Prism Book Alliance® would like to thank Lynn Kelling for stopping by today.
Title: Caged Jaye
Author: Lynn Kelling
Publisher: Forbidden Fiction
Cover Artist: Original art by Natalya Nesterova. Cover design by Siol na Tine.
Genre: Contemporary, Crime Fiction, Drama, Gay, Gay Fiction, Thriller
It’s Jaye Larson’s nineteenth birthday, and all he wants is to spend time with his boyfriend, Kris, and his mother — the people he loves most, who make life worth living. But faced with his mother’s demons, the imperfections of his relationship with Kris, and dangerous, homophobic strangers, one by one, all of Jaye’s dreams are soon derailed. Plunging into a waking nightmare, shortly after going to bed alone, Jaye wakes in an alley, pinned down by two men with slow, bloody rape and murder in mind. It’s just the start of Jaye’s fight for his life, and his sanity, as time and time again, he’s forced to make impossible choices to survive, no matter what it costs.
Writing Non-Romantic Erotic Fiction
Caged Jaye is a prequel to a romance novel. That means it takes place before either of the two star-crossed lovers – Jaye and Dixon – ever meet. So, way back when I was merely coming up with the idea for this book, I knew it couldn’t be a romance. But if not that, then what?
At first, I thought it would be profoundly limiting to have no romantic pairing in my sex-filled, erotic drama. In my experience, readers don’t usually take kindly to the notion of reading a book all about the solo sexual escapades one half of an established couple. It comes across as cheating. Whoever the MC sleeps with is doomed to be instantly disliked, right?
That’s what I fought, right from the start, with Caged Jaye. It’s already known that, while incarcerated, Jaye barters his sexual services to a thug named Cash in exchange for protection. Cash sits right in the readers’ sites, and not only because he fills the spot in the relationship Dixon should have held, but because he isn’t even a nice guy. Cash owns Jaye. It’s prostitution or slavery, not an equal partnership. From the outside looking in, Jaye is victimized, and Cash is the Bad Guy for multiple reasons.
This is why I had so much fun doing everything I could to get readers to like Cash. The saddle of “romance” had been lifted from the story’s back, leaving it free to roam into new pastures where anything could happen.
I’ll be honest with you, going into writing Caged Jaye, I expected the whole process to be an uncomfortable struggle. I had no romance to bring characters together. I had an MC in prison, losing his mind and constantly under violent threat. It was a recipe for disaster.
And I loved it.
My goal was clear – get Jaye through this shit. Find a way to allow him to survive. Who has time for sweet-talking a lover or gazing into one another’s eyes when it’s life or death, every moment of every day?
I wrote Caged Jaye faster than almost every other book I’ve written. The more danger flew his way, the more obstacles he faced, and the scarier it got, the more the story flowed and the quicker I needed to find the end. It was exciting, freeing, and exhilarating.
Jaye is on his own, so we all root solely for him. His perspective is the only one that matters. There’s clarity and tension.
There’s also a ton of sex—sex that’s dark, dirty, and desperate. Issues of consent are always at play. Sexual activity is a bargaining chip used to add value or trade favors. Politics come quickly into play, pitting man against man, or group against group. With his body as his only form of currency, Jaye is empowered in new ways, just as his vulnerability is constantly under siege.
In a lot of ways, that leaves the sex meaning even more than it does in a typical romance. It isn’t someone’s feelings at stake – it’s someone’s life, someone’s sanity, their freedom and ability to say no when someone else wants in.
But even though the romantic element in Caged Jaye is missing, that doesn’t mean it isn’t important to the reader or the larger arc of the story. The reader, going in to Caged Jaye, knows Jaye eventually finds his man. There is more story to tell. So the daunting horrors waiting for Jaye in behind bars are a little more palatable. The fear is assuaged. Like a rollercoaster in a theme park, we can take the ride knowing where we’ll be getting off, and that we’ll be more or less in one piece.
I had a hell of a good time giving Jaye his adventure. He gets through it on his own, without the support of his man. I hope readers enjoy the thrills in store, knowing Jaye will be in good hands when the journey is through.
About the Author
Lynn Kelling began writing in order to tell stories that aren’t afraid of the dark, don’t hold anything back and always strive to be memorable, forging lasting attachments between character and reader. Her inspiration comes from taking a closer look at behaviors and ideas lurking at the fringes of life—basically anything that people may hesitate to speak of in mixed company, but everyone wonders about anyway. Her work is driven by the taboo in order to expose the humanity within it. Lynn is an artist, designer and lover of any form of creative self-expression that comes from a place of honesty and emotion, whether it’s body art or opera. She has had multiple novels published, has written over seventy works of erotic fiction of varying lengths, and always has several novels in progress.
Monday, April 11th:
Tuesday, April 12th:
Wednesday, April 13th:
Thursday, April 14th:
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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