Welcome to the site, Kelly. Most people will know that this isn’t the first time you and I have spoken; it is, however, the first time I get to play the part of the Person In Charge. (Don’t mind if I take full advantage of it.)
For those who might not know, Kelly has a new novel out and I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that I’m thrilled to all hell over that fact. So what better way to show some support than have Kelly stop by and answer some questions for us?
Help yourselves to a drink, get comfy, and we’ll get started.
Henley: Let’s start this interview off right. Top or bottom?
Kelly: Oh for you, baby? There’d be both.
Henley: *chuckling* I’m betting there’s a bit of you in each one of your characters, even if it is just the fact you love to bare-knuckle fight for screaming crowds.
Kelly: Oh, so that WAS you who followed me home that night. Whew. For a second there, I thought it might have been somebody creepy.
Henley: *pauses, thinks, continues* Using your two main characters, Nathan and Fury, what one characteristic for each can you relate to personally, and how did that relation make the story better?
Kelly: I think with Nathan it was wit, if I could dare to say I possess such a skill. I do tend to combat situations with humor, though, and Nathan definitely did that in the novel more than once. I think it added a levity to the novel that it needed in places. And with Fury it’s the desire to protect the people he loves and trying desperately to keep said loved ones out of bad situations, even if he needs help or even if they want to be there to, in fact, help him. The desire to keep Nathan separate from his chaos lended a lot of the tension to the novel without which I wouldn’t have had… well. A novel.
Henley: Asking an author who their favourite character is ranks right up there with asking a mother to name her favourite child. Everybody’s got one, but nobody wants to admit they do. So, just to make things awkward, who’s your favourite character in FIGHT and why?
Kelly: Probably Fury, though I’m going to tell you why I love each of the main characters in turn, since you made the mistake of giving me this file and the floor well before deadline. I love Fury because of his oh-so-human contradictions. He’s Ferdinand the Bull; a vicious, ferocious fighter and imposing man who really just wants to smell the flowers, enjoy life, and help people. He was a bitch to make talk while writing the book, and any time he did speak up, he surprised me. I love his looks, his tattoos, his past… Yeah. Fury… he’s my favorite.
Nathan I adore because he tries so damned hard. And I love anybody who is willing to make sincere, honest change for the good of himself, his life, and his loved ones. Nathan’s a fighter, possibly even more so than Fury, and he never gives up even when he wants to.
Laura’s a hard-ass, but she’s an honest hard-ass, and I love her for her human moments. Those few lines of text that told me she was hurting on levels so deep that she didn’t know she had them.
I love Greg Moore for being a classically kind father-figure with a few twists. The book needed that guy. Same goes for the good Reverend and his wife, Vikki.
And Hellabeth… the name says it all, doesn’t it? I love her because she’s got the best line in the entire book: “Last time that happened we had dead people. You want to be dead people, asshole?” Gotta love it.
Henley: Indeed. It’s been suggested that you might enjoy the occasional bit of cinematic erotica in a certain niche genre. Would you say partaking in this experience has been beneficial to your creative outlet for this novel, and why or why not?
Kelly: Suggested nothing, I’ll say it: I dig porn. With heavy earth-moving equipment, even. Sincere digging, here; no spade-in-the-garden kind of crap.
And of course I especially enjoy it when I get to watch it with my favorite Canadian gentleman boy toy. Who shall remain nameless except to say his last name rhymes with “Finley.”
But as for porn specifically helping me write this book… you might be surprised to know that it was a very tame .gif image that helped me mold Fury into the man we see on the pages. It’s even safe for work! And it can be found right here (Fury’d be the guy on the left):
…of course there was another one involving rimming that helped me find, ah, inspiration, shall we say, for one of the steamier moments in the novel. Nothing like watching a man’s eyes roll back into his skull because something feels just that kind of good.
Henley: *takes a moment*
Kelly: Oh take all the time you need. I’ll be you know. Right here. *waggles eyebrows*
Henley: You have a stunning talent for world-building, and what I refer to as weaving webs. Now that the world of FIGHT has been created, can you see yourself weaving other stories into it?
Kelly: I don’t want to close doors before I’ve even finished building the frame, but I think FIGHT is going to be a stand-alone novel in its own little world. I like where the characters ended up, and I think the main story that needed to get told was written.
Henley: Did you know what message you were trying to get across to your readers (with FIGHT) when you first started writing it? Or did it come to you as the story developed? Without spoilering, can you share a bit on what that message is?
Kelly: I knew I needed to write the book in order to help myself get over a very particular brand of heartbreak. I needed to be reminded of virtues I admire and treasure; needed to get lost in a story that I could steer toward, at the very least, a happy-for-now ending.
But I’d have to say the message is BE YOURSELF. No matter how weird. People are complicated critters who don’t always make good choices or even make choices at all. Sometimes it’s just going with whatever current you happen to fall into and praying you find a canoe and a paddle along the watery way. I think what I wanted most was to write a story that really showed how being true to who you are is hard as hell and will absolutely upset the balance of your universe, but eventually it’ll shake down to the good. The truth has a way of cutting out the clutter and leaving what really matters. And, in this case, that was two men who’ve made mistakes but who still want to try. To find love, to find hope, to find a path that will better themselves and others.
Henley: OK, Kelly. It’s August.
Kelly: Like, from THE GIFT?
Henley: NO! As in the season.
Kelly: Oh. Damn. Okay, right. All caught up now. Continue.
Henley: As I was saying… It’s August. You’re sitting on your back deck doing your best to avoid the sun–
Kelly: As I would be. Totally. Delicate, I am. Oh so delicate. That turning to ashes shit really sucks.
Henley: (be grateful it’s not sparkles) –and you get a call. It’s a bigwig from Fox Entertainment. They want to make FIGHT into a movie. They’re going to let you choose the actors (yes, we’re pretending it actually happens like this), and they’re also going to let you choose the way they format the story (i.e. animated, real-life, some rad mix of both). What are you going to tell them?
Kelly: I love this question. Mostly because I’m a huge fan of the Cinnemax show, BANSHEE, and they just introduced a character on there that is a *spitting image* of Fury. His name is Geno Segers, and you can see him looking oh-so-Fury like over here:
Minus the red-and-black braided mohawk, but that guy actually *is* 6’4” and about Fury’s weight. I nearly fell off the couch when I saw him.
As for Nathan? I’m thinking someone like Alex Pettyfer (from MAGIC MIKE and ENDLESS LOVE, http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1641117/) or Chris Pine (new Captain Kirk, among other roles, http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1517976/).
And it’d be live-action, all the way. Heavy emphasis on the action. 😀
Henley: How many of these did you say you were going to do again? Because I could probably do this all night. I have no doubt that things could start getting a little personal, though. *slides open drawer, pulls out tape measure, and lifts an eyebrow*
Kelly: Keep trying, sweetheart, but mine will still be bigger.
Henley: You know? I believe that.
Kelly: Of course you do. Of all people, you even have more of a reason TO believe it. *grins* Now then… Maybe it’s time to talk about the book, itself?
Henley: Sure! Can you tell us what it’s about?
Kelly: Well, I could tell you. Or I could let Lego Fury and Nathan tell you themselves.
Kelly: …see? They’re so much better at this explaining thing than I am.
Henley: That was awesome!
Kelly: Thank you! And you know what ELSE is awesome?
Henley: Other than us?
Kelly: Yep! A contest!
Henley: CONTEST? WHERE? WHEN? HOW?
Kelly: I’m running a contest to celebrate the new release over on my blog. I’m giving away three ebook copies of the book, and those winners will also receive a free MP3 file of me reading one of the juicer bits of my novel, (and don’t worry; I’ve got years of experience reading erotica and doing my very best When Harry Met Sally routine). And one other lucky winner will be eligible for the GRAND PRIZE: the ebook, the audio file, and the Lego versions of Fury and Nathan featured in that video up above. All details are over on my site.
Henley: So comment here to enter to win, dear readers! And don’t forget to include your email info so Kelly can let you know if you’ve won. Now for the last and all-important question: Where can we buy a copy of FIGHT?
Kelly: You can get your copy RIGHT HERE! And here’s a little more about the book and me, myself, and the sarcastic I.
To Nathan Hunt, honesty is anything but the best policy. Telling the truth has gotten him nothing but heartache and pain; so lying about who he is and what he wants seems to be the only path to job security and friends. Hell, it even brings him a hollow kind of happiness.
Except, that’s not much of a life for any man. Especially one with Nathan’s passion. Desperate to cure his self-made misery, Nathan agrees to go along with a con that will score cash for Nathan to start over. There’s just one problem: lying is getting harder by the day. And a con who can’t lie, is a con who gets caught.
Nathan’s attempts to distract himself from his moral quandary lead him to a mysterious, intoxicating man named Fury. The Mixed Martial Arts fighter knows a thing or two about lies and pasts better left buried. He and Nathan have something else in common – they both want to be with someone who lets them be themselves.
Together, they undertake a journey that proves honesty is more dangerous and more difficult than either of them could have imagined. And as they combat addiction, thugs, guns, and their own inner demons, Nathan and Fury can only hope that their battle to be together will be worth the bitter fight.
Nathan registered the look of dulled shock in Duke’s eyes, and a presence manifested next to them. Nathan shoved Duke away but didn’t do anything else. He was too busy staring up at Fury and fighting for control.
Fury leveled a gaze on Nathan but didn’t say a word or lift a hand. He had on jeans, a checkered shirt, and a long coat that was stretched taut across his shoulders.
“Oh, hey…hey, Fury.” Duke straightened his clothing, but he was the rabbit cornered in the hunt. “Didn’t… Man, I didn’t see you.”
Fury swiveled his head and glowered. Duke backed up, smart enough to read a cold trail. “We cool, man. We all cool, here. Nate? You know where to find me if you need me, right?”
Nathan struggled to make his vision stop bleeding red and didn’t answer.
“Cool. It’s cool.” Duke smacked his lips and jogged off in the other direction.
Nathan would have sighed in relief and slumped against the wall, but Fury returned his focus to Nathan, who suddenly had sympathy for those insects pinned to boards for display.
“Ah…” Nathan cleared his throat. He wiped his palms on his jeans and tried to think straight. “Um…hey.” Fury still said nothing, and Nathan tensed so he wouldn’t squirm. “You had a great fight. Earlier, I mean. Inside…in the…not out… Right.”
Fury blinked. Slowly. His eyelashes were so dark and thick, it looked like the guy wore mascara. He wasn’t exactly an attractive man in the traditional sense. Too much forehead, eyes too close together, big, crooked nose…
“Duke’s an asshole,” Nathan babbled. “Harmless, usually. Just fucked up tonight.” Nathan had no idea why on God’s green earth he was defending Duke. Or maybe he was defending himself. Trying to be smooth after a tweaked-out piece of shit cornered him in a parking lot, and Nathan had to tamp down the urge to kill Duke with his bare hands? Christ, what was wrong with him? Nathan took anger out on himself, not others.
“He sells some decent weed, if that’s your thing,” Nathan tried to joke, laughing feebly. Fury only had three inches of height on Nathan, but Fury might as well be the size of skyscrapers.
“It’s not,” Fury said in his characteristic growl. “My thing.”
“Oh.” Nathan coughed. Of course, he would try to push weed on a teetotaler. That was Nathan’s style, right there. Smooth. “Well. Sure. Not with what you do for a living, right? Can’t be good for the—”
“I got other things.”
Nathan shut his mouth with an audible clack of teeth. Fury still studied Nathan, hands loose at his sides, shoulders at ease, expression neutral. If the fighting thing ever failed, Fury had a bright future in poker. “That right?” Nathan asked.
Fury nodded, and again, it was slow. “Yeah.” Fury looked Nathan up and down, just like he had after Nathan had spotted him on the weight bench. Must be trying to place him. No way was it anything else.
“You were at the gym,” Fury said at last.
With the threads of recognition in Fury’s tone, Nathan’s logic died, and he got sucker punched by hope. Stupid, untimely, insipid, teenager-with-a-crush hope. “I…uh, yeah, I was. I think.”
“You think?” Fury asked with what might have been amusement.
“I do. Think,” Nathan replied with more assurance. It was easier to come by when he told himself this conversation wasn’t really happening.
Fury finally quit inspecting Nathan and glanced around the parking lot. “You headin’ back inside?” “I…I don’t think so.”
Fury stared at something far away. “You interested in some more action?”
“Always.” The answer flew from Nathan’s lips before he could catch it. The symptoms of the panic returned, but they hurt a little less. “What you got?”
Fury shoved his hands into his pockets. “I got somewhere to be.” He took a few steps toward the row of cars, and he paused, raising his eyebrows at Nathan. “You comin’?”
Do all you do in and for love. Many thanks!
Kelly Wyre enjoys reading and writing all manner of fiction, ranging from horror to romance. She used to work in advertising but is now happily chained to her writing desk. Kelly relishes the soft and cuddly and the sharp and bloody with equal amounts of enthusiasm. She’s a coffee addict, a workaholic, a chronic night owl, and loves a good thunderstorm. Currently Kelly resides in the southeastern United States.
And if you like FIGHT, try the New Amsterdam Series!