Gary Gaugler: Your main character in The Garden of Fibs and Sin seems like a character you can love to hate. Is he anyone real? Are any of your characters based on real people or are they completely fictitious?
Jason Lloyd: Daniel is loosely based on a good friend of mine (I’m not naming any names, ha-ha!). They share similar characteristics and views, but I always embellish. My character, Daniel is what I would call an “anti-hero”. He can be sweet and an asshole, just like the real person he is based on. In the end, though, the audience will be rooting for him. Daniel is a character you’ll end up loving, just like my friend.
I base most of my characters on people I know, once knew, or have run into at some point in my life. No one is safe. I recently had a fan ask me a similar question about my characters. I ended up showing him some pictures of the people I used as inspiration and he was impressed with the physical similarities. I always warn people, “Be careful what you say or do around me, it could end up in a book.”
GG: What was your inspiration to start writing? Any favorite books?
JL: I started writing at a very early age and I have never stopped. I was really into reading the classics when I was younger, but my favorite books now are:The Perks of Being a Wallflower, I am Not Myself These Days, and Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe.
GG: Daniel Patrick Darling II has some very interesting qualities to him. If he were a cocktail or had a staple cocktail that he’d always be seen ordering… what would he be?
JL: In The Garden of Fibs and Sin, Daniel love Grey Goose Vodka (He takes after me). He drinks Grey Goose on the rocks in the story, but if he were a cocktail, it would be a Grey Goose dirty martini. His mind is filthy. It just suits him.
GG: Where do you get your ideas? What are you biggest inspirations when writing?
JL: I get my ideas from people around me. I like to people watch and I’m always listening. I keep notes of various ideas, people, quotes, and places on my phone. I’m constantly writing down ideas, poetry, and thoughts. Even the dirty thoughts. How do you think I write all those sex scenes?
GG: How many licks DOES it take to get to the center of a Tootsie pop?
JL: Ha-ha! I get impatient after too many licks and I just start gnawing on the damn thing.
GG: You have a book of poetry coming out which is very different from a romantic or fiction novel. What would be the last genre of writing you could ever see yourself writing?
JL: I’ve written autobiographical nonfiction, gay romance/erotica, and poetry, but there are a few genres I would have issues writing. I love reading young adult books and I would love to write one someday, but I think it would be hard for me to tone down the inappropriateness (ha-ha) in order to write one. I also would have difficulty writing science fiction. I don’t think my brain is wired for that.
GG: Your works focus a lot on love and lust. What are your thoughts on true love? Does it exist?
JL: I am a hopeless romantic. I believe most relationships start out with lust, but end in love. I do believe in true love or soul mates. I think there is someone for everyone. I hope to find mine someday. In my own special way, I’m writing a love story or relationship I hope to have in the future only minus the drama, and serial killer death scenes.
GG: If someone wrote a book about you, would it be drama, a comedy, a romantic-comedy, action film, or science fiction?
JL: Romantic-comedy, but a hilarious Romantic-comedy filled with penis jokes, cum gutters, vodka, and me falling a lot. Most likely I would be falling a lot because of the vodka.
GG: Tell me more about the Filthy Fibbers series as a whole. How many installments are you planning?
JL: I love campy horror and slasher movies that make you laugh every once in a while. The Filthy Fibbers series is about a wealthy socialite and heir to the east coast’s largest pharmaceutical company who mysteriously disappears following a fun night out. His best friends are then left to figure out what happened to him. The boys begin receiving threatening messages from an anonymous stalker clearly out for some revenge. Someone knows all their deepest, darkest filthiest secrets and is threatening everyone they hold dear. It’s going to be a dramatic-fun ride. The series takes place in New Hope, Pennsylvania. I grew up around there and it’s one of my favorite towns. I’ll mention some landmarks, restaurants, and shops in the book too. The anniversary edition of The Garden of Fibs and Sin (Filthy Fibbers, Prequel) is due out this June. The new edition has some added surprises: Brand new cover, I wrote an afterword for the book, fans had submitted questions that I answered, and there is a fun chapter snippet from the next book being released this Fall/Winter. All together I’m planning at least two more future books for the series, so there will be three all together.
GG: What’s your favorite character from a book (not yours) and why?
JL: One of my all time favorite characters from any book is, Charlie from The Perks of Being a Wallflower. He’s sweet and loveable, how could you not like him. He is also slightly damaged, but not broken. I have always identified with that.
Time to switch it up.
Jason Lloyd: We clearly write two different types of genres. I lean more towards the gay romance/erotica side and you’re more science fiction/gay fantasy. How did you choose this genre?
Gary Gaugler: I think they’re interesting. I’ve always liked video games and action movies. For me, my attention span is pretty short so I need a Star Wars or an X-Men to hold my interest versus an Anna Karenina.
JL: In your first book’s blurb, you said, “Imagine a world where being gay is not only accepted but expected.” How do you think the world would be today if the gay and straight roles were reversed? Like, straight people would have to come out of the closet instead of gay people or there would be straight pride parades instead of gay ones.
GG: I think it would perfectly mirror the world we have now. I believe you’d have people that were accepting of the “straights” and those that weren’t. It’s human nature, unfortunately, to fear or hate something you don’t understand.
JL: What character in The Emerald Gates of Eliantar do you identify with the most and why?
GG: I would say probably one of the nameless, drunk peasants in the background that doesn’t get to be involved in any of the excitement of the books.
JL: How did you choose characters for The Woodland Tombs of Eliantar? Do they have a connection to people in your real life?
GG: Absolutely not, although I may borrow a trait or two from people I know or have known. I find that characters are much more interesting if you make their personalities extreme ends of the spectrum. To me, it’s not enough that this person is going to be an angry person. They need to be a fury and have sort of an ungovernable rage.
JL: I know I always have a favorite scene in a book I have written, what is a favorite part of yours?
GG: You’re going to love this, since you write gay erotica. The climax is my favorite part of both books. Throughout the writing process you’re assembling all of these components as though it’s a chess board and when you get to that chapter or chapters, it’s hugely rewarding as a writer to finally clash it all together.
JL: If you could have any mystical power or superhero power what would it be and why?
GG: I tell myself that I would want telekinesis so I could be like Marvel’s Phoenix and just wig out whenever I was ticked off. The reality is, I would want telekinesis so I wouldn’t have to leave the couch.
I base most of my characters on people I know, once knew, or have run into at some point in my life. No one is safe.
JL: Since you love writing about fantasy and alternate worlds, what are your favorite fantasy books, movies, or tv shows that inspire you?
GG: I love the classics like Alice in Wonderland and The Wizard of Oz and their film versions as well. They’re a great starting point I think. Before it became a singing extravaganza, Gregory Maguire wrote Wicked which was a very dark and very adult retelling of Oz. I honestly think that is it the book that inspired me to do this.
JL: Do you have any strange writing habits, like writing in the dark or writing naked (send me a picture if this the case *wink*)?
GG: My secret writing confession is that I’m kind of a monster when I write. I am seriously embarrassed of how cranky I am to those around me while I’m working. Absolute silence is a must and God help the person (poor Steve) that breaks that silence with a question about what I’d like for dinner. [Ed. Note: I don’t know that he’s that bad…]
JL: Authors usually have certain scenes they have issues writing. Sometimes it’s a fight scene or action scene. Sometimes it’s a love scene or emotional scene. Was there a part of The Woodland Tombs that was hard to write?
GG: Yes, absolutely. I really feel overwhelmed writing love scenes. I have read and watched many love scenes in books and movies and I’m not prude about it at all, but when it comes time to write it, I feel like I’m a teenager in health class again.
JL: Inquiring minds want to know if you’re into any fetishes? Hey, I write gay erotica. You know I had to ask at least one dirty questions.
GG: I feel like this isn’t the first dirty question. My fetishes include getting into pajamas and ordering a stuffed crust pizza… and none of that is innuendo.
JL: What can we expect in the next installment of your series and when will it be available?
GG: The goal is to crank out one of these each spring for summer reading. Going forward, I’d like to switch points of view and have some books told from other character’s perspectives. Like the Harry Potter books, I’d like to the series to get darker with each installment. This may be a fantasy world, but it’s a very long way from Alice’s Wonderland or Dorothy’s Oz.
Copyright 2016 The Gay Journal All Rights Reserved
I would like to thank The Gay Journal for allowing me to digitally reproduce this article.
For more info on Gary’s fabulous books, check out his website:www.Eliantarbooks.wix.com
For more info on my dirty smut (books), check out my Book Page.