Hi guys! Today we are super lucky because our good friend L.A. Witt is here with us once again to talk to us about her upcoming book Search Me! I reviewed this book yesterday and it will be released by Carnal Passions tomorrow.  

Hello L.A.! It is so nice to have you back here at Joyfully Jay!  You are becoming a regular around here so it is so nice to chat with you again.

Glad to be back! I’m going to take over that chair in the corner. We’ll just call it my chair. And if anyone sits in it, there’ll be hell to pay… [Ok, chair is officially reserved! You can help keep the cats off the keyboard.]

Today we are talking about your new book, Search Me.  This book is the third in the series and features Nick and Andrew, who we first meet in Cover Me.  What made you decide to revisit these characters and come back to them in this book?

Two things. One, I realized the way things happened in Cover Me would leave them with a lot of emotional stuff to sort through, and over time, I started realizing both of their personalities would result in a lot of guilt and a lot of bottling things up. The second was when I wrote Trust Me. I had Nick and Andrew in the background, and I couldn’t even put them on the same page without some obvious tension brewing between them.  Once I was about halfway through Trust Me, it was clear that things were not okay between Nick and Andrew, and I couldn’t leave them hanging like that.

The first two books in the series include both the romance as well as a police investigation, whereas in Search Me the sole focus is about Nick and Andrew.  What made you decide to change things up for this book?

Mostly because with their personalities, any kind of case or what have you would have given them an excuse to not focus on their problems. Nick and Andrew are pros at ignoring entire herds of elephants in their living room, so the only way I could get them to hash it out was to take them away from their demanding, distracting jobs and force them to deal with it. Nick still isn’t speaking to me…

Are there any plans for more stories set in this world, or do you think that things are wrapped up for the four men?

I’m not 100% sure either way. I really like the four guys, and I’ve built this world that’s really fun to play around in, so there’s a possibility of more. I don’t have any books planned yet, but that could change at any time.

You have visited Joyfully Jay a few times now but I don’t think we have ever talked much about you as an author.  Can you tell us how you got started writing and about your first published book?

I’ve been writing as long as I can remember, but it was NaNoWriMo 2008 that, combined with the opportunity to write full-time for three years, got me started writing seriously. It was also my first time writing romance, and I found my niche, so I stuck with it. Three years and thirty-some-odd books later, I couldn’t imagine doing anything else.

<br<>My first published book was Between Brothers, an erotica novel I wrote under my hetero pseudonym, Lauren Gallagher. That was published by Carnal Passions (the same publisher as the Cover Me series, incidentally) in 2009.  A few months later, my first M/M, Rules of Engagement, was released by Dreamspinner.  And the rest, as they say, is history.

You are a very prolific writer and seem to keep quite busy (30+ books in three years!).  How much time do you spend writing?  Do you work on more than one book at once?  How long does it take you to complete a story?

I’m at my desk from about 8 am until midnight, 5-6 days a week.  Now, some of that time is spent screwing off (maybe an hour or two), and I usually spend the mornings catching up on paperwork. I take a couple of hours off in the evening to have dinner and watch cartoons with my husband (yes, we watch cartoons. Don’t judge us.).  All told, I probably spent a minimum of 8 hours a day writing, and sometimes up to 16 hours.

As for completing a story, it varies a little.  Novellas usually take 4-8 days to write. Novels are about 2-6 weeks, with longer books (100K+) taking 5-8 weeks. Editing is usually a day for a novella, 2-3 for a novel, maybe 4 for a longer novel.  Right now, I’m working much slower than that because I’m in the process of moving, and have been since early October.

I generally only work on one book at a time, but lately I’ve been working on one and tinkering with another. This usually happens when a particular plot bunny won’t leave me alone, and I have to exercise it a little just to make it shut up. I’m doing this right now, as a matter of fact. My current project, Where There’s Smoke, is my main focus, but For The Living and Mission: Compromised are both nagging like crazy.  So I make myself write 5,000 words (my daily word quota) of Where There’s Smoke, and if I still feel like writing after that, I’ll work on one of the other two projects. But I absolutely have to make sure one book is the primary focus, and it must be priority, otherwise I’ll never finish anything.

You write both m/m books at L.A. Witt and erotic het romance as Lauren Gallagher.  How do you balance your time between the two?  Do you work on both types of stories at the same time, or do you go back and forth? 

I haven’t been balancing it as well as I should for the last few months. The vast majority of what I’ve written has been M/M, mostly because I was spending some time re-evaluating which direction I want Lauren to take. Do I want to keep her focused on contemporary? More BDSM? More ménage? Maybe some other subgenres? There will definitely be more Lauren in 2012, though. L. A. isn’t going anywhere, of course, and will still be my more prolific name, but I haven’t written a Lauren book since the end of 2010.  In fact, there’s a good chance I’ll be working on L. A. and Lauren books simultaneously for a while. I’m doing that right now, as a matter of fact. (Mission: Compromised is hetero)

Can you tell us any more about what you have coming up?

As of right now, my Coming Soon list is a little sparse, mostly because of all this moving nonsense. Wreaks havoc on productivity, let me tell you.  I have two books coming out in January, though. The Given & The Taken, which is book #1 of the Tooth & Claw series, will be released by Samhain on January 3rd.  Noble Metals, a steampunk novella, will be released January 4th by Carnal Passions.

I have a couple more releases in 2012 that I can’t talk about yet, but keep an eye on my website for more details.  I may even have some F/F coming out for those who like stories about the ladies.

As far as what I’m planning on writing in 2012? A little of everything.  The second and third Tooth & Claw books are on the agenda, along with a couple of science fiction stories and of course plenty of contemporary.  Really, it’s anyone’s guess, because I never know what plot bunnies will pounce on my skull during the night and chew their way into my writing brain.

How can readers find out more about you or your books?
Plenty of places to find me!

Thank you again for coming by.  It is always so much fun to have you here and you are welcome back any time!

Thanks for having me! Always a pleasure!

Once again L.A has generously brought with her a copy of her new book to give away to one lucky commenter.  To enter to win a copy of Search Me, leave a comment below by Friday, December 9 at 11:59 EST.  

  • By entering the contest, you’re confirming that you are at least 18 years old.
  • Winners will be selected by random number.
  • If you win, you must respond to my email within 48 hours or another winner will be chosen. Please make sure that your spam filter allows email from Joyfully Jay and leave your email address if it is not in your profile.
Thanks again to L.A. for stopping by today!