Saturday, March 7, 2009

claire thompson - DIK day 3 - Book Giveaway


Today is my last day on the DIK blog and I would like to show my appreciation by offering a free download, by random draw, to one lucky person who comments on this post. You can either choose my newest book Polar Reaction or any book in my backlist. The winner will be announced tomorrow. Thank you ladies for your warm welcome to a newbie at blogging.

Now on to today's post:

A Golden Boy – Johnny Wilson – What makes him such an appealing hero?
Of all the books I’ve written (and I’ve written plenty) I’ve never received as much feedback about a particular hero as I have for Johnny Wilson, one of the two protagonists in the Golden Boy/Golden Man series. What is it about Johnny that so captures the hearts and minds of my readers?

Golden Boy was the first m/m novel I wrote. I had just become aware of the rising fascination of female romance readers with the intimate lives of gay couples. I decided to have a go at the genre, adding my particular bent of BDSM to the equation.

I found myself wondering why women would want to read about gay male lovers. When I began to think it through, the thought of alpha males connecting with one another on an intimate, passionate level had the potential to be very sexy indeed. First the imagery itself is very powerful—two strong, sensual man tousling, touching, kissing, making love in ways women find exciting and perhaps taboo. Gorgeous male bodies pressing together in hot, muscular passion…excuse me while I go for a quick cold shower…

I realized the potential for guiding my readers past their comfort zone, but in a way that would leave them breathless. I wanted to take my readers by the hand, leading them into the heated waters of explicit male/male sex—from first kiss to final consummation. They would become voyeurs of a world they, by definition, could not be a part of. Yet through my stories I hoped to draw them in, to let them connect for a moment with a different lifestyle, a different world.
Beyond the physical imagery, I wanted to explore the difficulties and intensity unique to men as lovers. I wanted to capture the unexpected gentleness and honesty shared between men who are not afraid to be vulnerable.

As our story opens, Johnny Wilson is in serious denial—not only of his sexual orientation, but of his sexually submissive nature as well. This gave me an opportunity to delve into the dynamics of “coming out” along with finding the courage to commit in a loving D/s relationship.
Johnny, until his world is turned upside down by the quietly confident, fiercely sexy Eric, had always defined himself as straight. His controlling domineering father would never have permitted any other definition. The conflict generated within himself and later with his family adds a new dimension to the already difficult terrain of gay love and a D/s lifestyle.

His love interest, Eric Mendez, has to come to terms with a new kind of man. Eric is used to playing the BDSM scene, using pretty boys for his pleasure but never letting them anywhere near his heart. When he first sees the devastatingly handsome man at the gay underground club where he reigns as king, his heart is captured in an instant. Unaware Johnny is only just beginning to understand his own impulses and desires, he promises himself to find the elusive golden-haired stranger and make him his own.

When they do finally connect, Johnny, na├»ve, innocent and aching to learn, is an entirely new sort of challenge for Eric. Used to savvy, worldly men who can fend for themselves in the ways of sex and submission, Eric realizes the enormous responsibility of becoming involved with someone who trusts him so completely. The usual rules he’s applied to his D/s affairs no longer apply. For the first time in his life he’s faced with something far more dangerous than whips and chains. He’s faced with the possibility of a real connection and the chance it will break his heart.

In writing the story, I wanted to get behind the tough, sexy alpha hero that is Eric and explore his gentler side—his romantic impulses and the tenderness love engenders in him. I wanted to explore the conflict between the new lovers, with Johnny pulling back, uncertain of his own desires, and Eric forcing himself to go slow, even when Johnny presses for more.

I think ultimately readers connected with Johnny because of his vulnerability, and then his courage in exploring his true nature. They felt included in his journey, a silent partner rooting for him. I think Johnny brings out the maternal instincts of my readers (myself included). We want to take care of him and protect him from the hard cold world waiting for him. He’s the archetypical son we have to protect, while at the same time, the sexy, hot lover we wish to seduce…but we’ll have to leave that to Eric! Still, a girl can dream…


Jenre said...

These sound like very interesting books, Claire. Different perhaps than the usual alpha/beta dynamic usually found in m/m.

jessewave said...

Hi Claire
I just wanted to say how happy I am that the ladies are getting to know your writing, and to thank you for joining us on the island.

I don't want my name in the hat for a free book for obvious reasons (I have most of them)*g* but I know that whoever wins will get a terrific book.

Lea said...

Thank you so much for the synopsis and rationale as to what you think is interesting womem romance readers in m/m themed books.

This is a new genre for me but you have certainly piqued my interest.

"Golden Boy", does sound like a wonderful story.

All the best.

Kassa said...

Thank you so much for the discussion of the dynamics involved in your books. I just finished Polar Reaction and was pleasantly surprised to see a discussion over here on the same book!

Golden Boy has piqued my interest for sure.

Unknown said...

I'm reading Polar Reaction now. I'm new to your books and also to the m/m theme too. But really enjoy both. I look forward to reading more of your books and really enjoyed reading what you had to say on the blog.

Anonymous said...

Hi Claire,
I just have to say that I love Johnny, he's just so genuine and trusting.
I just read your post on Polar Reaction. I want to read it even more now, lol.
Best wishes.

Anonymous said...

I'm fairly new to the genre so I enjoyed reading your thoughts on trying to see what intrigues female romance readers when in comes to a m/m romance. I've wondered the same thing on occassion, so it was nice to hear someone else's POV on it.

Your stories sound wondeful! Good luck to all the commenters :)

Unknown said...

Claire, since having a peek at your posts this week I've been noodling around the excerpts and blurbs for your backlist, and wow, they all look so yummy. I'd love a chance to win something, but either way I'll be doing some sampling!

Sarah said...

Sounds super interesting and nice covers!!

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