Thursday, May 4, 2017

Guest Post & Giveaway - A Honeyed Light by Freddie Milano

A Honeyed Light
by Freddie Milano
Genre: M/M Paranormal Romance

Kunal, relative newcomer to the strange town of Harmony, has his hands full preparing for Diwali. That should be enough to keep anyone's mind preoccupied, but Kunal can't really ignore that he's nearly thirty, single, and still buried in the closet.
Out of town at a gay club one night, he bumps into Oscar, proprietor of Harmony's only sex shop, and figures his secret is now officially out. What he doesn't expect is a slow seduction, or to have to decide what it is he really wants in life.

How did you come up with the town of Harmony?

Harmony was actually a group effort. My two friends, to whom A Honeyed Light is dedicated, were instrumental in coming up with this small haunted town in Virginia that was home to an eclectic group of people, as well as the ghosts of those who came before. Each of us has a hand in some of the background characters, the ghost stories, and the way Harmony came together. You'll find out more about Harmony as the series continues, so I don't want to give too much away now!

When creating a character, do you come up with the visual concept or the written concept first?

It depends. Sometimes I visualize a character -I see a face I really want to write about and I build around that. But sometimes I have a solid idea of a plot and then need to figure out what character would fit in there. So really it's the chicken AND the egg.

Kunal was one of those that the written concept came up first. I wanted to write about the holiday of Diwali for a collection from Less Than Three Press, because I didn't want the collection dominated by Christmas stories. So then I decided to write about this Indian-American character struggling with his sexuality in this weird haunted town, just trying to celebrate his birthday and his favorite holiday.  After I got his concept nailed down, I went looking for visual representation.

 Enter: Shahid Kapoor

Which character is your guilty pleasure?

I'm going to have to go with Olli. She's fun and spunky and doesn't really care too much what people think of her. She's got a lot of qualities I like to think I have, or that I wish I had. But honestly, I just think she's fun to hang around with. And she's super fun to write!

Plotter or pantser?

Plotter. I outline, I write character profiles, I find pictures, I do a ton of planning. But that's not to say that what I outline is what winds up happening. I leave wiggle room because sometimes these dang characters have a life of their own and stuff happens I wasn't expecting that works better than my planned outline. I did stick pretty close to my outline for A Honeyed Light though.

Is there anything you really wish you could do, character-design-wise, that you feel is outside your current skillset?

Yoooo, I wish I could cook like Kunal. He is really good at it and has been doing it his whole life. He also enjoys it way more than I do. I just want to be able to have gulab anytime I want to be honest.

Freddie Milano lives with her partner-in-crime, two adorable and devilish cats, and far more ideas than she really has time to set down on (electronic) paper. She’s been writing since she could hold a pen, though most of the embarrassing stories thankfully never made in onto the internet, and can stay safely buried.
She loves wine, Korean pop music, tea, chocolate, coffee, mythology, and both video and tabletop gaming. An ESFJ surrounded by introverts, Freddie has learned the art of socialization in moderation. Besides, staying in just leaves her more time to write.

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