As it's my first historical romance I thought I'd answer some questions about why I've started writing in this different genre of gay romance.
What was the inspiration behind Finding Home?
I watched a soapy Australian TV drama set in the 1950s, called A Place To Call Home. I loved the gentle feel of it. This combined with how difficult it would have been to be gay then made for interesting ‘what if’ questions for me.
What was the hardest part to write in Finding Home?
The relationship between the men while they were in public. Although I’m used to not being too demonstrable in public with my boyfriend, I’ve never known a time when it was actually illegal to be gay. So how did men signal to one another they were that way inclined?
Why was this the first historical romance you’ve written?
I’d always shied away from historical romance because I worried about the research needed. I also enjoy popular culture, so writing something without those modern references felt less like myself. However I realised I could include popular culture references from that time too, which was lots of fun. I also worried that it would be harder to give the men a genuine happy ever after if it was set in a period in the past. Because for me a HEA is critical. I won’t write a story without one since I’m such a romantic at heart. I also used to mistakenly believe that historical romances would feel like a history lesson to read, or have lots of historical detail serving not much purpose to the story. But having read some of my friends’ wonderful historical category romances I found this to absolutely not be the case. The historical setting is a background, the place in which the story happens; the romance, the characters are just as important as in a contemporary romance.
Was it harder to write a historical then you’d previously thought?
There was more research to do. There were issues such as language to ensure the phrases used were appropriate to the characters at the time. It wasn’t as hard as I’d anticipated, but it was certainly more difficult than writing contemporary. With contemporary I rarely do much research – except for the jobs of the characters, or perhaps the setting – so this felt more involved certainly .
What were the characters like to write?
Once I had the vision of each character’s physical appearance in my head, and their job, I worked out their back story. Their back story clarified their emotional wound and therefore their conflicts and issues with a relationship. Layered on top of this was the wider societal issues of being gay when it was illegal. Which was interesting as an external conflict to add to the characters’ journeys.
What helped you make the decision on how to write the sensual scenes in Finding Home?
I always believe a sensual scene should, just like any other scene in a story, move the plot forward, develop the character, or develop the romance. I’ve written a range of sensuality in my stories from complete fade to black, as in a young adult novel, to detailed and at length explicit scenes. For me, it has to feel right for the characters and the story. As the feeling of the story was like a gently dramatic heart-warming TV drama, and being gay was illegal, it felt appropriate to me for the sensual scenes to be private and between the two main characters. Hence I wrote the unresolved sexual tension, the tightening of trousers, the kissing, the emotions, but ended the scenes at that point.
Finding Home - A Sweet Historical Gay Romance
- opposites attract
- small town
- hurt / comfort
- forbidden love