3 Chicks After Dark is the latest stop on the Boys in the Band blog tour, with authors Cecilia Tan, Paula Coots, Rowan Speedwell, and L.A. Witt. Each of these writers has brought a rock star to life in a recent romance release, so they got together to talk about music, musicians, love, and good old “sex, drugs, and rock and roll.” Today they answer the question: “What got you started writing about rock musicians? Why do they make good heroes/love interests?”
Scroll down for the answer and a chance to win a prize pack of all four books!
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WITH THE BAND by L.A. Witt
Hard rock band Schadenfreude is finally on the verge of the success that’s eluded them for the last several years. With Aaron McClure as their new lead singer, nothing’s going to stop them…except maybe a steamy, secret relationship between Aaron and bassist Bastian Koehler. Aaron knows all too well what can happen when band members get involved with each other. After all, his last band was a casualty of his last relationship, and Schadenfreude forbids band members from dating for that very reason. But Bastian is too hot to resist, and besides, it’s just sex, so what’s the harm? Their passion in the bedroom is rivaled only by their ambition as musicians, though, and pretty soon, it’s going to tear them, and Schadenfreude apart, if they can’t get back to playing with the band.
ANOTHER ROCK STAR by Paula Coots
Music is the driving force in Reed Lang’s life and he’s hit the jackpot when it comes to signing a major label deal and scoring a hit single or two. It’s never an easy task and certainly not for an out and proud gay man, even in this day and age. Now, it’s time to hire the backing band, shoot the videos, do all the promotion work and get out on the road. But what happens onstage is only half the show. When the wild energy onstage can’t be contained some become more than just hired hands. Friends. Mentors. Tormenters. Lovers. Surviving the circus of the music business, the rigors of the road, staying true to your art and discovering your heart show Reed that maybe there is more to life than being just another rock star.
DARON’S GUITAR CHRONICLES by Cecilia Tan
It’s the 1980s, the era of MTV, AIDS, and Just Say No. Daron Marks is trying to make it as a guitar player in an industry where the whole world is the closet. Keeping his sexuality a secret would be a lot easier if he hadn’t developed a huge crush on his band’s lead singer, Ziggy Ferias. In fact, everything would be a lot easier without his crush on Ziggy… except for fame itself. In the latest volume of Daron’s Guitar Chronicles (volume 5), Moondog 3 are on the road. Is the tour bus the pressure cooker that will meld them together or will the pressure blow them apart?
ILLUMINATION by Rowan Speedwell
Adam Craig is burned out. Lead singer of the hard rock band Black Varen, he’s tired of the empty life of groupies, paparazzi, and hotel rooms. Worse, a life in the closet. Miles Caldwell is a brilliant artist, tied by agoraphobia and social anxiety to his family’s lodge. Alone but for his parrot, he spends his days illuminating manuscripts and hiding from the complexities of life. Somehow, the man who’s never home and the man who never leaves it must find the strength to fight for a future together.
“What got you started writing about rock musicians? Why do they make good heroes/love interests?”
Cecilia Tan: Daron jumped into my head fully formed when I was a teenager. At the time I was going through my own issues with sexuality–was I bi? was it OK to have a silent crush on a straight girl? He came to me as an older character, mid-thirties, in the closet, in love with a much younger lead singer. It didn’t occur to me at all at the time that he was a coping mechanism for me figuring out myself. I was aware, though, that I was trying to figure out the puzzle that was the music business of the time. Why was it that the guys with the most makeup and the most harlot-hair were the supposedly most raging heterosexuals in the business, the metal bands and David Lee Roths of the world? Where had the sexually ambiguous figures of the seventies, like Bowie, gone? In the eighties even Elton John got married to a woman and absolutely no one was “out.” Pop music was my “culture” as a teenager and I felt that was desperately confusing. Daron was my way of trying to figure that all out, and rock and roll was a necessary part of the puzzle.
As for why rock musicians make good love interests for romance novels, well, they say you always should give your characters an interesting job or milieu–when “rock star” is your job, being sexy is a requirement. It’s a perfect match.
Paula Coots: I was warped when I saw David Bowie and Mick Ronson on TheMidnight Special when I was eleven years old. Their amazing onstage chemistry blew my little mind. Not only had I never seen anybody look like those two, I’d never heard anybody sound like them, either. Their “otherness” touched the alienation that was already making itself known inside of me.
Rock musicians make good heroes/love interests because good musicians are passionate about music. To learn your instrument well borders on obsessiveness. I think having your body in tune with an instrument, and therefore the creative energy that flows through it, connects the musician with pure sexual energy. And hey, they are usually messed up, conflicted and maybe just a little crazy.
Rowan Speedwell: I like to turn tropes on their heads. The idea of a rock star who doesn’t want to be one was irresistible. Plus, it’s such an artificial lifestyle, there are lots of opportunities for drama.
The thing is, playing music is for real musicians what writing is for real writers–not something you like to do so much as something you HAVE to do. The stars who have the longevity are the ones who realize this and are able to keep that in focus and avoid the superficiality of the lifestyle. Adam can’t do that because Adam’s first love isn’t rock music. He LIKES rock and roll, but doesn’t LOVE it, at least not enough to keep his head in the game. That’s where he becomes vulnerable. And it’s that vulnerability that not only leaves him open for bad influences, but also for love.
L.A. Witt: There’s something incredibly attractive about someone who can work a crowd of 50,000 people and play awesome music. As a somewhat failed musician, I have a tremendous amount of respect for anyone who can not only play, but play well enough to rock the house like that.
Don’t forget to enter the giveaway for a prize pack including all four ebooks below!
About the Authors:
Paula Coots: After seeing David Bowie and his lead guitarist, Mick Ronson, when she was eleven, Paula knew what she wanted to do with her life. Her plan was to play lead guitar in a band and hopefully make it big, and then after that focus on writing. Well, she didn’t “make it big” as a rock star, but she has had her share of traveling band adventures as a lead guitarist over the past twenty five years. And now she writes!
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PaulaCootsBooks | Twitter: @PaulaRCoots
Rowan Speedwell lives in a tarpaper shack in the North Woods, without so much as cable TV to keep her warm. She is allergic to publicity and loathes marketing, so her books only sell one or two copies. If you have one, she thanks you, as your purchase enables her to buy cat food for her diabetic feline companion, Kimball O’Hara.
Webite: www.rowanspeedwell.com | Twitter: @RowanSpeedwell
Cecilia Tan mostly writes erotica and science fiction/fantasy, but she started writing Daron’s Guitar Chronicles back in the eighties and is still writing it today. She is the author of Slow Surrender, The Prince’s Boy, the Magic University books, and many other novels and stories. She was inducted into the Saints & Sinners GLBT Writers Hall of Fame in 2010 and is currently a nominee for the RT Magazine Career Achievement Award in erotic fiction. She lives in the fantasy utopia of Cambridge, Massachusetts with her three cats and her partner of 23 years.
Daron serial website: http://daron.ceciliatan.com | Blog: http://blog.ceciliatan.com | Twitter: @ceciliatan | Facebook: thececiliatan
L.A. Witt is an abnormal M/M romance writer currently living in the glamorous and ultra-futuristic metropolis of Omaha, Nebraska, with her husband, two cats, and a disembodied penguin brain that communicates with her telepathically. In addition to writing smut and disturbing the locals, L.A. is said to be working with the US government to perfect a genetic modification that will allow humans to survive indefinitely on Corn Pops and beef jerky. This is all a cover, though, as her primary leisure activity is hunting down her arch nemesis, erotica author Lauren Gallagher, who is also said to be lurking somewhere in Omaha.
Website: http://www.loriawitt.com | Blog: http://gallagherwitt.blogspot.com | Twitter: @GallagherWitt
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Other stops on the Boys in the Band Tour: Dec 4 Sinfully Sexy Books | Dec 6 MM Good Book Reviews | Dec 10 Pants Off Reviews | Dec 11 Mrs. Condit Reads Books | Dec 12 Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words | Dec 13 3 Chicks After Dark | Dec 14 Sid Love | Dec 16 Em Lynley’s Literary Love Shack | Dec 19 Joyfully Jay | Dec 18 Boys in Our Books | Dec 23 Elisa Rolle’s Reviews and Ramblings