Jump to content

Ask an Author 2.0 #31

Sign in to follow this  
Carlos Hazday


It’s that time again, folks. We’re running dangerously low on material for future issues, and I need your help. Think of something you’d like to ask any GA author and send me their name and the question. I’ll take it from there.

Privately, I answer most generic questions sent in. This one was tough. Is it wrong I’d like to meet one of my own? Anyway, I found the question and the responses of the authors I pose it to fascinating.


Is there a character you read about in a story on GA that you would like to meet? Get to know better? Take out to lunch? Who is it and why?




Okay, I'm not sure who asked this but they enjoy making my life hard. I read a lot of stories on here and couldn't pick just one. So I'm having a brunch to invite three of my many favorites.

First is Alexander Wellberg from Mistletoe and Handgrenades by KC Grim. Alex is just a sweet man whose life is turned upside down. I want to know what he fought with his grandfather about and how he is making out with Brice. He lost millions and is starting over. I want to know how the house was when he was finished with the repairs.I am nosey and he has the answers.

Next up is Peter Gregory from Second Shot by Andrew Q Gordon. I love Peter's determination. He is so down to earth and seems to have so much common sense. Would enjoy just making him a friend and maybe learning martial arts from him. One way to get in shape.

Finally, Skylar from Twice the Night Before Christmas by Aditus. I love a character that turns the expected on its head. He is so sick and as a vampire he can't drink blood. How does that even work? Skylar is sassy and determined to live his life, or is it his afterlife, the way he wants to. He is the type of man who sees things differently. I would love finding out his take on werewolves, elves, and the likes.

So a nice brunch, coffee, tea, and plenty of conversation. Those are my choices today. In a month that might be completely different. 



It all depends on whether I'm meeting them as myself or as another fictional character. Most of the characters I love are much younger than me, and I'd feel weird and out of place meeting them. So, assuming I'd be meeting them as myself, I'd pass. It just wouldn't feel right to meet them. If I can meet them as a character in the story, then there's way too many to mention. I often imagine myself as a side character in stories, interacting with the protagonist(s) and helping them out.

Having said that, there's one character I'd like to meet as I am. That's the bartender in chapter 1 of Dabeagle's You Don't Know Me. When it's time for me to move on, I'd like to meet him and see if he'll give me a second chance, too... I'd like to see what my life could've been like if I had lived as an openly gay man.



If I could meet a character I've read about in a story on GA, I think it would have to be Dalen Ashkevron in dkstories' Tests of Blood.  It is a FanFiction story of Mercedes Lackey that is pretty unique.  It takes place within the lore of the world, but much further forward than any story Mercedes Lackey has published thus far (including her yearly Anthologies. ie. official FanFiction). 

I find Dalen to be a very interesting person, in that he has power but he's conflicted by his family history and the fear of it repeating.  Underlying it all is the steel nerve to drive what is right. And he's basically a magical engineer. It would be hugely interesting to me to see the magical steampunk sort of world he exists in too.  How could you go wrong with a magical artificer making a locomotive?



I would choose, Aaron Keslin from Desert Dropping. Singularly he was the character that brought me to Gay Authors. I would like to meet him later in life, after he moved on from High School to see how he developed into a young adult. He had an interesting character arc. He was a bully, but one that had demons that made him mean, to the point where it was slightly irredeemable for their ages. He also had tender and romantic moments that kept you guessing and interested. It brought him to life and I would be curious to see if he still had that spark that made him interesting.


@Mann Ramblings

A few years ago, Cia wrote a series across a set of anthologies called Maze for Three, and I was kind of fixated on her alien shifter, Moshe. He was big, powerful, and kind hearted in a way I'd always appreciated. I guess I've always had a not-so-soft spot for honorable beast-men in sci-fi and fantasy. (I may have even written about one...)

So, to be honest, I wouldn't have wanted to take him out just for coffee.  (nudge, nudge, wink, wink...)


@Renee Stevens

Just one? Argh! You don't make this easy on me. I don't get to read on site as much as I'd like to, but there are still a few characters that really stand out in my mind. I'll be honest in that as soon as I read the question, my mind screamed Davis Retic (also known as Dav) from Cia's story Hypnotic. I personally love the depth that Cia put into the character. There are so many dimensions to him that I'd love to learn more about him. To most, he comes across as nothing more than a very dangerous Carthera, but the more we learn about him, we learn that, while his reputation is definitely deserved in some aspects, there is so much more to him. He was fascinating to me and he has stuck in my mind since the first time I ever read Hypnotic.

Receiving this question actually made me go back and read my two favorite Carthera stories, and then I questioned my answer. Why? Because I'd also love to meet Bashta, from Cia's other Carthera story, Two of a Kind. I loved Bashta from the start of the story and just kept wanting to learn more about him.

Geez, who am I kidding. I'd love to meet the majority of the Carthera. They are fascinating and I'd love to hear lots of stories about them! These are by no means the only characters that I've loved, but they are the ones who stand out immediately in my mind.



There are several I can think of, but I'd have to say Jonah from @aditusRed Running Shoes tops the list.  There's something endearing about him, despite his penchant for running when things get tough.  His quirks and spontaneity would keep things interesting, and he seems like he'd be a loyal friend.  I'd love to sit down over some lunch or a cup of coffee and talk about life, dragons, or whatever else strikes our fancy.  

My other choice would be Ben from @Cole Matthews's stories.  When I edited So Weeps the Willow, I frequently commented "I adore Ben!"  I also threatened Cole with torches and pitchforks if anything happened to him.  Ben seems like a down-to-earth, friendly guy who would be fun to hang out and chat with.  


That’s it for this month. Remember if there are no questions, there’s no blog. Come on, y’all, I’m begging here.



My apologies to @Valkyrie for leaving her off the blog. She answered the question before anyone else, and I screwed up. Sorry, Val.

  • Like 12
  • Love 9
Sign in to follow this  


Recommended Comments

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Similar Content

    • By Wesley8890
      Recently i came across a story on a different site and liked it so i started reading more from the author. The site on which i was reading was a free site that operates on donations. When i reached a certain part in a story, it asked to go to the authors site for a special chapter. I did so. When i wanted to read the special chapter however i found out you had to be a member of the site. I went ok lets see if they offer free membership, turns out they dont. So i figured the special chapters probably has no bearing on the story. However as i started to read the next chapter it referenced a key event that happened in the special chapter. At this point, as a reader, i became a bit angry as if youre going to tease an special chapter you should tell us if it has any influence on the story. I felt cheated because it involved the engagement of two major characters and the next chapter its like oh yeah they got engaged. They also had a crossover between stories and would just say after so and so happened. They would make these allusions to events in the first chapter in each story involved after the special/cross -over happened. My question is as an author do you feel that it is right to do that to a reader just for the sake of money? And to readers how would you have reacted?
    • By Renee Stevens
      I can't believe it's already March. Not only that, but it's the first Wednesday of the month, which can only mean one thing. It's time for another Ask An Author feature provided to us by Dark. If you have questions you want to ask your favorite authors, but don't want to ask the questions yourself, you can always send your questions to Dark for inclusion in the Ask An Author feature.
      Ask an Author #47
      Welcome back to another quirky question and answer session with your favorite authors!
      In AtA #46, we heard from authors Comicality, Mann Ramblings, Mikiesboy, and Parker Owens.
      Today in AtA #47 we hear again from authors Riley Jericho and SkinnyDragon, plus Craftingmom, and Roberto Zuniga.
      It’s been quite a while since we’ve had the pleasure of quizzing lady craftingmom (way back in AtA #34, fall of 2015). She had just finished Lie of the Serpent, a story revolving around protagonist Bryan finding his missing fiance. I, like many others, found myself fighting tears several times. Craftingmom does love a good tear-jerker! Since then, she’s been promoted to Promising Author and gifted us with more than half a dozen more stories. Currently she’s working on a sequel to “Guarding the Line” called Finding the Line[/url. While I haven’t read it (you know I’m not a big fan of teen romance), the reviews are intriguing. I think everyone has had that one crush you just wish you’d said something to, but what would have happened if you’d actually gathered the courage to do so? If you have read the original, this is the same story but from the opposite point of view, and it’s just beginning! you can flip back and forth between them or read all of Brady’s story first. But buyer beware! Craftingmom writes character-driven stories. You’ll certainly feel the drama as if you were the protagonist yourself. You can also catch her at her other sites; she’s really branched out over the past few years. Look for her pen name Taylor Ryan, if you want her M/M stuff.
      To Craftingmom: What sort of things do you do after dealing with the darkest parts of your stories?
      That's a tough question. I'm not really sure I do anything specific afterwards. I do go through a bunch of tissues while writing them. I think since I tend to do most of my writing between midnight and 4am, the fact that I get to crawl in bed with my husband and cuddle up with him helps too. Before bed, my girls also crawl into my bed and beg me to read to them. Mind you, they are 13 and 15, so the fact that my 'teens' still want to be with me and have me read to them is very comforting.
      One other thing my husband and I usually do is, when we are eating out, if any first responders come in to eat, we'll pay for their meals. (When 12 walked in at once, that was a little more overwhelming!) It's not something I do specifically because of the dark subject matter I write, but I do think about how these people help the kinds of souls that I write about, and it's a small way of thanking them for their service.
      Back with us again is Author Riley Jericho, most well-known due to his epic saga An English Teen, Circumcised in the USA. Riley flirted with us for four years before finally completing his saga last fall (Sept 2016). He writes to us from all the way over there in Manchester, UK. Although a quiet, private person, Riley is quite friendly, do don’t hesitate to swing by his profile and say, wish him a belated birthday (Jan), or poke him about writing us something new, not that I’m one to talk. Still, who knows what random comment or thought will lead to the next big story?
      To Riley Jericho: How do you feel about your stories being so popular and well received here on GA?
      I'm a Brit. It's genetically impossible for us to accept compliments, so that's a tough question! The truth is, I value every chapter read, and drink in each review, answering them methodically. I love hearing what people think and it also feeds me with many new ideas.
      Some of my least-proud moments here on GA have been the times I've disappointed readers. I think you know what I mean, and even though my reasons and situation were very real when I disappeared for a long while, I'm also very sorry for doing that—and thanks to all who sent hugs and kept looking out for me.
      So in answer to your question, it astounds me that most of my readers still stuck around! And yes, I'm extremely grateful my stories are well received. That said, I've learned the lesson that you have to write because you want to. Sometimes there will be lean times when it comes to how well readers respond. It's only when the story is important to you, do you keep writing.
      Author Roberto Zuniga is the better half of Albertonothlit, who you might remember appearing in this blog once or twice. In addition to writing, Roberto is an amazing artist and has created book cover art for his husband. Mexico certainly has its challenges when you’re gay, but these two almost make it seem like a fairy tale. An interesting tidbit for those Star Wars fans out there: Roberto’s birthday is Star Wars Day! (May the 4th) Now you’ll always remember. According to his friends, this is one sweet man, and he can also write a mean story. Roberto has several stories that are in progress, but I think the hidden gem in his collection is Bred for War. In this story, there are two countries at war. They’ve been at war so long that their entire economy has slowly become only about the war. What will happen when two soldier-boys from opposite sides meet? They’ve been raised from birth to believe their enemy is “evil.” It’s a devilish conundrum for the main characters and the world Roberto has created makes my inner sci-fi geek purr.
      To Roberto Zuniga: First, congrats on your husband being promoted to Promising Author! So, when it comes to writing, have you two collaborated on projects or bounced ideas off each other?
      Not really. Carlos is very secretive when it comes to his writing, I think it's basically a matter of wanting everything to be perfect before he shares it with anyone, including me. I have been lucky enough to get to read many of his works before everyone else (LOL) and I've also encouraged him to carry on and publish. Take Earthshatter for instance -his new novel published by DSP-, I loved him so much I wouldn't stop bothering until he accepted to publish it LOL. Something I do have to say is I love his finished products and drawing for those projects.
      Regarding my writing, pfffff! I'm so messy! Ideas can flow through my mind sometimes, scenarios, particular characters. Sometimes I share some of my ideas or tell him I feel conflicted about this or that character, but he usually advises to work it the way I feel I should. We do read each other's work and encourage each other to keep on writing, since we both enjoy it so much.
      Author skinnydragon comes back to finish up our blog for the day. Skinny is the author behind https://www.gayauthors.org/story/skinnydragon/18weeksoftwoey]18 Weeks of Twoey and has recently begun a sequel that is generating a lot of attention. Unfortunately, Skinny received bad news at the end of 2016. Send him some love and well-wishes. I feel blessed to have been able to be on the periphery of his life the last couple years. I hope that he is able to maintain the strength of body and mind long enough to see his bucket-list completed. Headstall I think said it best: “I just want you to know, though we've never met in person, you have impacted me from the first interaction. You are one of the bright lights in my life, skinny … I wish I could hug you for real... I really do.”
      To skinnydragon: What motivates you to write? For example, do you hope to publish or is it simply a creative or artistic outlet?
      That’s a good question. It is an artistic outlet, in a way. I certainly never intend to publish - ever. I am not a writer, which should be pretty plain to any reader. I’m an artist. I was challenged by a mentor/writer, when younger, to write a back story for a few things I painted. In doing so, I discovered it helped improve everything I subsequently drew. Now I do it all the time and they have become the germs for a few story ideas. Some stories may even get written and make the journey from my laptop to GA.
      That’s it for now! For more info on these authors, go check out their stories, post in their forums, and/or catch them in chat!
      I’ll see you next time, with authors JackBinimbul, mikiesboy, palantir, and WolfM!
      I’m always in the market for new questions! Simply PM me (Dark).
      Until next time!
    • By MrM
      For the next time you feel unproductive: 
    • By FormerMember4
      The Author/Reader relationship is important. Symbiotic in many ways. There’s no content for readers without authors. There’s no feedback and audience for authors without readers. We all know it’s a balancing act.
      On GA stories I love to see engagement. On characters, plot and anything in between. You sometimes see things you missed. There can be a downside... The dreaded Spoiler! Often just a lucky guess.
      As a writer, Does it frustrate you when a reader foresees plot course? Do you feel the need to rewrite? Are you pleased to see the guessing?
      As a reader, Do you guess a possible future for story? Do you only comment up to current chapter??
      I have seen some good guesses recently. It got me thinking! *no wisecracks from peanut gallery*
    • By Myr
      I'm observing, as of late, a certain amount of pushback from Authors on how they want their stories to look.  I'm certain that this has long been a sticking point between Publishers and Authors.  Authors want one thing and Publishers want another.  When Gay Authors first started, we had custom websites for each author.  Every author had their own look, their own feel, their own navigation.  At the time Gay Authors was just that, a collection of independent authors doing independent things.  Technology steamed along and a software called eFiction came out and we started using that to allow authors to post their own stories.  It quickly grew and allowed Gay Authors to grow because the staff was no longer tied up making custom websites.  This went along for a couple years growing and growing until finally, we needed a new solution.  So, I wrote specifications for software that would fully integrate with our forum software and features and would fix all the problems of eFiction, putting all authors into one place, with a consistent look and feel for Gay Authors.  We called it GA.Stories at the time to fit with Invision Forums naming scheme.  IP.Blog, IP.Forums, etc.  The rollout was... not fun.  A lot of hosted authors threw outright tantrums.  Several left Gay Authors in a high drama huff.  My patience in that timeframe still needed vast improvements.  I've learned since.  
      I know @C James is one of the authors that was greatly discouraged by the lack of customization available in the original GA.Stories.  The Rich Text Editor of the time, which is actually an early version of what we use now, didn't have the robustness it has today.  C James has a lot of cool pictures that fit his story and the editor simply choked on them.  (BTW, pictures work great now even allowing text to wrap around them properly)
      Anyway, the original move to GA.Stories taught us some painful lessons and we used those lessons when we upgraded the site to Forums 4.1 with the new version of Stories.  I'm frustrated with the slow pace of updates from our programmer, but you get what you can afford and the pool of programmers that can integrate with the forums is small.  
      But that brings me, finally, to my point.  We have set up a story hosting system that purposely segregates different types of data so that we can present the best consistent look to our readers.  Further,  by keeping things separated, when we make a software update for a format change, we can update the entire site in one go, instead of having to worry about how it affects certain stories that our outside the standard.  Another very important aspect of this is the Chapter Text Controls.
      Those controls do not work properly when authors mess with formatting a lot.  We've got some code in place to try to mitigate it, but honestly one of the oldest computer sayings out there applies here perfectly:  Garbage In, Garbage Out.  We have not overly restricted the Rich Text Editor yet to allow for the maximum convenience to the Authors.  Some authors have been abusing this on purpose or because we haven't been clear enough.  So, I'm making this post for our authors here and we'll work to make things clear before we post it wider.
      In the system, we have specific fields for everything.  This allows us to have a consistent feel for everyone.  It allows us to leverage features, like Series.  I saw a story note the other day linking to the next story in the series.  I about hit the roof.  We have a Series feature specifically for that.  There is a blog Tuesday Jan 9th detailing that. 
      We make these rules clear to authors in the Moderation Queue:
      Any notes for a story belong in the Story Note text field and will be displayed on the Story Detail/Table of Contents Page Chapter Text field is for Chapter Text ONLY.  There is to be no notes, no repeating of the chapter number and chapter title.  No repeat of the Table of Contents. Chapter Text ONLY. Chapter Note field is for Chapter notes you want to appear before the chapter text.  It shows up in a noticeable box on the chapter page. Chapter End Note is for notes that you want to appear at the end of a chapter.  It shows up in a noticeable box at the end of a chapter page. Chapter Text should be posted clear of formatting except for: Bold - This can be used sparingly for emphasis.  If it is used for more than a handful of words, then you are using it wrong.  Your writing should provide the required emphasis, not the formatting. Italics.  Same as with bold.  The exception here is that in Fantasy, Sci-Fi and FanFictions, italics often indicates mental communications instead of verbal. Letter format - There is a button in the editor for this so that you can tag a block of text as a letter.  This is used in some fiction to show a written letter format. IM/Texting Format - There is a button in the editor for this so that you can tag a block of text as being IM's or Texting.  This is used in some fiction to show texting, IM's and emails. Rarely, but center and right justified might be used. Formatting you should NOT be using and why: Font Style - This does not usually work as intended and sometimes conflicts with the Chapter Text controls. Colors - There are people that are color blind or seeing impaired and the colors mess with the Chapter Text controls. Size - Members are able to set their own preferred size when reading with the Chapter Text Controls and setting a text size, especially a larger one, really messes that up. Nothing else really either because of how it'll look across various devices. Pictures can be used in the chapter text, but they need to be uploaded to the site somewhere else first.  Typically in the Gallery.  Pictures should be used to enhance and emphasize your story.  Resizing, and assigning title to the picture are also important.  (just double-click inserted picture)  
      FanFiction.net and Fictionpress.com solve these formatting issues by restricting all formatting to just bold and italic and stripping everything else when you paste.  We can do this as well.  It would solve a lot of our problems from a technical aspect.  I'd prefer allow authors to handle it themselves.  We will be working with software updates to clean this up.  Authors that need to be reminded of these issues may find themselves back into the moderation queue.  We're not making these rules arbitrarily.  They are to accommodate reading on various devices along with support for people with disabilities.
      Simple advice for posting into the system:
      Write in your program of choice Use these settings: Please check your spacing! - Do a search for ^p^p and replace with ^p. After the find/replace, select all and go to paragraph formatting. Your line spacing should be single, and your after spacing should be "auto"
      Do not indent - Whether it is by tabs or you have it set for a first line indent, please remove all indentation.
      Use Size 12 Times New Roman Font
      Paste into the chapter text editor Verify bold and italics if required. Add your image(s) if needed, being sure to double click on the image and naming it. Selecting left or right for alignment will let the text flow around the picture.  
      Let us know here why you're using chapter text for anything other than chapter text.  There might be opportunities to improve existing software structure.
  • Create New...

Important Information

Our Privacy Policy can be found here. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue..