Monday, February 10, 2014

The Life of a Male Romance Writer: A Guest Blog by Dylan Madrid

It’s not secret: what I do is very unconventional. I write love stories for a living. Whether they are about a single gay man looking for love in London or a female investigative journalist who is trying very hard to deny her attraction for a rough-around-the-edges male detective in Chicago – I tell tales about people falling madly in love. Sure, the love might start out as lust, but that only makes the story more enjoyable to read – and write.

I’m a minority in my genre. A quick glance down any author list of major romance publishers will reveal that I’m outnumbered by about 100 to 1. While some male romance authors make the decision to write and publish their work under a female pseudonym, I am one of the rare few who believes in the theory that what a reader really wants is a great story, regardless of the gender of the author. When a reader picks up one of my books, I want them to be intrigued by the content, not by who did the work.

My creative process is no different than my female counterparts. Like them, I spend hours upon hours sitting behind a computer crafting and revising, outlining and plotting. Like me, my characters are also unconventional. My novels are wide-ranging from gay romance to romance suspense to new adult fiction. I aim to write books that will appeal to readers who don’t often always find versions of themselves in traditional romance novels. I create characters that are just as complex, unique, and surprising as my writing career has been. I take risks on page and even greater ones by sharing my work with the curious public and often befuddled critics. But, as I teach my writing students to do, I believe in writing fearlessly. It’s really not my objective or life goal to forever change the romance genre, but I do feel my presence in the arena is needed and, for the most part, welcomed.

I’m often amused by the reactions I get from people I meet for the first tine when they ask the question, “What do you do for a living?” and I answer, with pride, “I write romance novels.” The expression is usually an odd mixture of surprise and pity. One woman actually said to me, “I’m so sorry. Did your other books get rejected?” as if I had turned to writing romance novels when my real writing career failed before it began. Typically, people are very intrigued what I do and find it refreshing. Sometimes I’ll get a very blatant “Why?”

My answer to that question is always the same: I write romance novels because love makes people happy.

Love in the Shadows 
Dylan Madrid

Genre: LGBT/Romance/Suspense/

Publisher: Bold Strokes Books

Date of Publication:  January 14, 2014

ISBN: 978-1602829817

Number of pages: 192
Word Count: 50,000

Book Description:

Quintin Pearson, an American living in London, has spent the last two years working as a magazine staff writer and nursing a broken heart. Craving a change in his quiet life, Quintin accepts an invitation to an exclusive party hosted by Regina Bremington, the U.S. ambassador’s glamorous wife. At the party, terror takes over when the electricity suddenly goes out and the ambassador is assassinated.

In the safety of a dark bedroom, Quintin meets a mysterious stranger named Luca, an Italian spy. Even though the two men can’t see each other, a spark is ignited that soon becomes a mutual lust. Within days, Luca arranges for them to meet again at a remote seaside town in Belgium. There, Luca confesses his true identity and convinces Quintin they must team up to bring the ambassador’s killer to justice.

Love in the Shadows was inspired by a dream I had and a song of the same title.

Original Version of the song by E.G. Daily:

New Version of the song  by Circuit 21:

About the Author:

Dylan Madrid is the author of the novels Mind Fields, Love in the Shadows, and Backstrokes. A California native, Dylan grew up in the Bay Area. He opted to backpack through seven countries before heading to college and spent a year living in Europe, primarily on the Greek island of Ios. When he's not dreaming about living on the Italian Riviera or running away to Belgium, Dylan teaches college courses in writing and the arts.

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