Prism Book Alliance® would like to thank Marina Ford for stopping by today. Please give them a warm welcome.
Author: Marina Ford
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Alexandria Corza
Genre: Gay Romance
Release Date: 01/20/2017
Friday, 23 January
The cat funeral.
Yeah, that happened today. I went and participated in—aided and abetted?—a cat funeral.
London life is tough on idealists. In an ideal world, after years of flirtation, Leo would be cosily settled down with Jack, his long-time crush. In an ideal world, Jack wouldn’t now be engaged to a woman. And in an ideal world, Leo would move on.
When handsome new neighbour Alex moves in opposite Leo, an opportunity to do so presents itself. But Alex is probably straight, working class, and poorer than Leo. While Jack’s engagement unravels, and Leo’s friendship with Alex deepens, will Leo manage to find happiness with the right man? Or will he succumb to his enemies: self-doubt, family expectations, and pride?
Told in diary form, this is both the story of a love triangle in London and the chronicle of a man’s struggles to confront his self-image and overcome his insecurity.
Recent Release Spotlight with Marina Ford
We are here today to talk about Lovesick. What can you tell us about it?
Lovesick is the story of Leo Taylor, a historian who works as a lecturer at a London university. He’s a bit of a neurotic mess, and has recently discovered that the man of his dreams, a colleague at his department, who’d been flirting with him for years, has just got engaged. Leo would really like to have a boyfriend, but his problem is that he overthinks things just a tad, and he has a very specific picture of what he wants, which isn’t always exactly what he can get. He befriends and eventually falls in love with his neighbour, Alex – but Alex is not a high-achieving, high-earning, upper-middle-class sort of fellow, nor is his sexuality as clear cut as Leo’s. In short, Leo has a lot to learn before he can get his Happily Ever After. The story unfolds through his diary, and is light and comedic in tone.
What about Lovesick makes you the proudest?
Lovesick is a reaction, on my part, to the romantic comedies which I grew up with. It’s a traditional romantic comedy in that two people meet and fall in love and end up together, with some jokes thrown in. However, I’m a little tired of the well-worn tropes of traditional romantic comedies. I’m not a fan of love at first sight, or of the couple that meets and immediately hates each other until they’re suddenly in love, nor of the couple that quarrels and bickers for the entirety of the plot only to end up declaring never ending love to one another. Lovesick is the romantic comedy I’d like to read: it contains both the friendship that precedes the relationship, as well as the actual relationship. It deals with how two people get to know one another even after they’ve decided to be together, and how they adapt to one another. It deals with adjusted expectations and the sacrifices that have to be made when you want to be a couple. Leo really wants a boyfriend, but when we first meet him in Lovesick, he isn’t really ready to have one. And I’m proud of how he makes me feel at the very end, like he’s earned his happily ever after.
If you could give one piece of advice to aspiring writers, what would it be?
Write. Write every day. Write about nothing. Write about anything. Write what tickles you, and amuses you. The more you write, the better you become. Also, keep a notebook on you at all times. When an idea strikes you, write it down. Don’t stop writing your current story to start the next one. Write your idea down and then leave it for when you’re done with your current project.
What do you think is the most rewarding thing about writing M/M versus other genres?
Like many fans of MM fiction, I’ve been a reader of traditional romance beforehand, but I’ve grown tired of the enormous, all-powerful, super rich duke, who lusts after the feisty, glass-wearing governess at first sight. At some point this scenario begins to stretch credulity. MM allows you to drop traditional gender roles and expectations entirely, and to focus your romance on other things – compatibility, interests, sexual attraction, circumstances. If it’s a historical romance, it produces new and interesting obstacles for the couple. Even in contemporary romance, there are new and interesting sources of conflict to explore, and that makes for exciting stories.
How important are secondary characters to your story telling? Do you actively try to have women characters in your M/M to balance the male focus of the MCs?
Secondary characters are always tremendously important to make a story feel like it’s grounded in something real. Some of these are women, but I don’t write them as female deliberately in order to balance the book. Mostly, it feels realistic to me that women would form part of the MCs friend groups, families, and work environments. I also draw on personal experience, and on my own friendships with gay men.
If you could be any Disney character who would you be, and why?
Belle from Beauty and the Beast. She was the first character in anything I’d seen as a kid, who spoke to me. She loved books, and she was independent, selfless and brave. In short, she was a kickass female heroine, who saves first her father and then the beast himself.
If you could have a conversation with any famous author, who would you want to get writing tips from and what skill of theirs would you like to emulate?
Jane Austen. From her letters it appears as though she’d actually give very practical writing tips. Her wit and sense of the ridiculous, her skill in observation and ability to construct a sentence filled with humour and irony, to the point that you can read her novels over and over again, each time discovering something else to laugh at or think about, is something I’d love to learn.
If you had to be a cat, dog, or a rat, which would you choose and why?
I’m a total dog person, but if I had to be any of the three, I’d definitely be a cat.
What are you reading right now and what is next on your to-be-read list?
I’m reading Daphne Du Maurier’s The House on the Strand at the moment. I find it fascinating how writers of the past manage to sneak in homosexual undertones and innuendo into seemingly straight stories. I’ve got a pile of books to read now that my friends and family have been so kind as to give them to me as Christmas presents.
Rapid Fire Time
Batman or Superman? Batman
Top or Bottom? Bottom
Favorite Color? Green
Australia or England? England!!!
Light saber or a Sonic screwdriver? Light saber. Nobody has yet cut a Darth Maul in half with a Sonic screwdriver, so this really is a no-brainer.
Sushi or pasta? Sushi.
Rock or Country? Rock
Music or TV/Movies? TV/movies
Sex or Chocolate? Waah!
Reading or writing? WAAAAH!!!
What are you working on? What is next?
I’ve a few books, which I will look to get published soon, but I’m mostly interested in seeing how my debut novel does. This is all very new for me, and I’m excited and anxious to see if others love it as much as I do!
About the Author
Hi, I’m Marina Ford, a thirty year old PhD student, living, working and writing in England. Writing love stories makes me feel like I’m falling in love over and over again, and so that’s why I do it, and that’s the feeling I’m hoping to share. Besides reading and writing, which is what you are most likely to find me doing, I love walking my dog, visiting pubs with my friends, and having long, passionate discussions about books and movies with my husband. This is my debut novel, but I hope to write and publish more romance and comedy in the future.
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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