Thanks for stopping by to talk a little about your writing! Let's jump right in. When did you begin writing and why?
Thanks so much for having me, Dawn! I remember writing an “epic poem” back in the 3rd grade because a girl in another class did. Unfortunately, it was an epic fail. Things did fall into place in the seventh grade. Even back then, I wrote fanfiction! I continued writing over the years, but raising a family put it on the backburner. Then, in ’99, a friend encouraged me to write in the La Femme Nikita fandom. That led to more fanfiction, which led to slash. Another friend once asked why I wrote m/m, and it’s because no one becomes pregnant! (unless we’re talking about mpreg, which I’ve actually written.)
Do you have a favorite genre? Is it the same genre you prefer to write?
I still read het, (very rarely because I lose patience with it. Some of these characters are just too stupid to live) but I love m/m and I prefer to write that, whether it’s contemporary, historical, sci-fi, paranormal, or fantasy.
Do certain themes and ideas tend to capture your writer’s imagination and fascinate you?
Okay, don’t judge me, but I love taking het tropes and turning them on their head by having two men as the main couple—a wealthy boss and his employee, a poor little rich boy who’s ignored by his family but finds love with an even wealthier older man, or a couple that just doesn’t have to worry about money problems. See the connection here? In the movie Cluny Brown, Mr. Belinski tells Cluny he’s going to write about the murder of a rich man, and she remarks on what an excellent idea that is, because no one really cares about what happens to a poor man.
Do you have a favorite author who introduced you to the genre?
Anne Higgins is the author of the first Batman/Robin slash I ever read.
What advantages or challenges does a writer in your genre face in today’s fiction market?
Of course there are challenges. Just as heterosexual romances took a beating back in the day, so to do homosexual romances. Periodically objections come up regarding women writing m/m. But you don’t have to be a serial killer to write about one, and I like to think you don’t have to be a gay man to write about two men falling in love. I’ve always said they’ll have to pry my keyboard out of my cold, dead fingers.
Tell me a little about the characters in Best Laid Plans.
Best Laid Plans is a novel in three parts that are loosely tied to characters and events in my Spy vs. Spook and Mann of My Dreams universe. In the first novella, Enter Love, we meet Tad Jackson and Rush Dalton. Tad is bisexual, which irritates his father’s side of the family. They blame his father, who is living with another man. Rush’s family couldn’t care less about him. All they want is for him not to cause talk in their social circle. Tad and Rush fall in love and by the end of the novella, they plan to marry.
In the second novella, Could You be the One, we meet Billy Bob Bolt and Josh Cooper. Billy Bob works for Jack Jackson, Tad’s father, and has been nicknamed Ragg Mopp by the men of Jackson Construction. Josh Cooper is a friend of Jackson’s partner and frequently comes by the ranch to visit. To his surprise, he’s fallen in love with Mopp. Mopp is a sweet young man who barely made it out of high school. His family has thrown him out, not because he’s gay—according to everyone’s gaydar, Mopp is straight—but because he’d not religious enough. Things get even worse when he begins dating a girl they consider too worldly. Mopp likes Mr. Cooper a good deal and becomes friends with him. However, he wonders if his girlfriend could be the one.
In the final novella, Best Laid Plans, we meet characters from DC—Eric Jameson, Dr. Pandora Gautier, Deuce, Ace, Trip, and Stan. They want the young woman and her son, introduced in Enter Love, who have taken refuge with the Jacksons, and they’ll stop at nothing to get them. If readers have read The Light in Your Eyes, which is also part of the Spy vs. Spook and Mann of My Dreams universe, they’ll recognize Delilah Carson, and discover the truth behind her death.
Where’s the story set? How much influence did the setting have on the atmosphere/characters/development of the story?
The story is set in Savannah, GA in 2001/2002, and was written for a very good friend who lives there. One of my favorite things to do is bring characters from one book to another. (This is why I can tolerate Jaws 3. *cough*) Characters who have appeared in my Spy vs. Spook and Mann of My Dreams books also put in appearances in this story. Characters in this book will appear in the next Mann of My Dreams, Just the Way You Are.
If you had to write your memoir in five words, what would you write?
(If I could have used six words…: She came, she wrote, she published!) However: Family, friends, writing, reading, writing.
How often does your muse distract you from day to day minutiae?
*laughs* Frequently. While I’m riding in the car—of course I can’t do this when I’m driving—I’ll often scribble notes on shopping lists, and every night before I fall asleep. That’s why I keep a notebook on my night table. I also carry a notebook with me, even when I go walking. And when I don’t have a notebook, I record whatever my muse has just told me on my cell phone.
What do readers have to look forward to in the future from you?
In April, Dreamspinner is publishing Whither Thou Goest, the sequel to the alternate reality historical Call Me Church.
Right now I’m working on Book 3 of Mann of My Dreams, which I’m calling Just the Way You Are. Once that’s done, I want to finish the Civil War western I’ve had on the backburner for a couple of years. And then there are a number of book that belong in a surreal universe, similar to ours but not quite the same.
Of course I doubt I’ll get them all done by the end of this year, but they’ll keep me busy. ;-)
The distance between Savannah, GA and Washington, DC is less than six hundred miles, but it might as well be the distance from the Earth to the Moon when it comes to the people who live in those cities. In Savannah, an ordinary family is making friends and falling in love, but they’re about to find their lives disrupted when they come into contact with some of the most ruthless and unsavory people who just so happen to call DC home.
Tad Jackson fled from his mother and his bigoted grandfather to live with his father Jack, who happens to be gay and who shares a house called the ranch with his lover, Tom Weber. Tad finds the home he needs, as well as the love and support, to become a confident and kind young man. Rush Dalton is the scion of a wealthy, socially prominent Atlanta family. However, he too has fled, from their emotional coldness and unreasonable expectations. Once he arrives at Pulaski and Jasper University in Savannah, Georgia, he’s chosen for an internship at Jackson’s construction company. That’s where he meets Tad. Tad knows that he's bisexual and wants Rush; Rush knows that he wants Tad. Now all Tad has to do is convince Rush that he really does belong in this family—and in Tad's bed.
Could You Be the One:
Billy Bob Bolt, known as Ragg Mopp at the Jackson Construction Company where he works, has the usual baggage: his family not only thinks he’s lost his way to Jesus, but they aren't happy with January Stephens, his brand new girlfriend, who's had too many boyfriends for their liking. What would really cause their heads to explode is the fact that the family he's staying with are gay. Mopp has become friendly with everyone at the ranch, including Tom Weber's friend, Josh Cooper, who’s also gay and who he likes very much. Trouble crops up when Mopp's girlfriend suspects him of cheating on her with the latest addition to the family, a young woman and her son who have a troubled past. When Jan gives him the ultimatum: marry her or they’re through, Mopp starts to wonder if he was wrong in thinking she was his one.
Best Laid Plans:
Everyone is making plans in Savannah. Rush Dalton and Tad Jackson plan to live happily ever after, while January Stephens plans to ease the hurt of a declined marriage proposal with alcohol. Josh Cooper's plan is to conceal his feelings for Mopp. And Mopp? He simply plans to get his life back on track—if not with his girlfriend, then in holding tight to Josh's friendship. Meanwhile, Eric Jameson arrives from DC with plans of his own. He intends to elicit information from Jan in an effort to come into contact with Babe, the woman who’s taken refuge with her son at the big house called the ranch. Babe plans to stay away from anyone who might try to take her little boy away from her and return him to the mysterious Dr. Pandora Gautier. Deuce Pettigrew’s only plan is to keep the man he treasures safe and in one piece. But the thing about plans is—sometimes they just don’t work out the way you expect them to.
“COME ON, RUSH. I want you to listen to this CD. It’s their last studio album—All About Chemistry.” Tadder seemed unaware of his condition.
Relieved to have an excuse to leave the kitchen, he followed Tadder down the hall, through the family room, and down another hall. Tadder’s and Becca’s bedrooms were at the far end of the house. Rush had never been in either of those bedrooms, although he’d had some pretty hot fantasies revolving around Tadder finding him alone in the house, dragging him into his room and stripping off his clothes and having wild monkey sex with him.
Did Tadder really want to listen to music with him? Did he maybe want to do something more? Maybe something physical?
No, of course not. Why would he want to do anything with someone like Rush, who was older, shorter, and inexperienced, who was ordinary and… ordinary?
“I should really go to my room and change out of these clothes.”
He sighed, his erection deflating. Well, that just went to show how interested Tadder really was. He backtracked to another hallway that led to his bedroom. Mr. Jack had built so many additions to this house that its original shape and style was obscured.
He opened the door and padded across the carpeted floor to the closet that held his shirts and trousers. He toed off his shoes, then reached for a pale blue shirt.
“I’ve never been in your room before.”
Rush let out a yelp and wheeled around, dropping the hanger with the shirt on it and pressing a hand to his chest. “What are you doing in here?”
“Well, that’s rude.”
“No, it isn’t. It’s a simple question.”
“Well…” Tadder flushed a little, which was kind of interesting. Why was he blushing? “I was afraid you’d use that as an excuse not to… to listen to music with me.”
“I was coming back.”
Rush nodded. He’d just stay in Tadder’s room a few minutes, soak in memories to hug close to him when he was a lonely old man in his lonely one-bedroom apartment, and then he’d—
“Earth to Rush! You in there, boy?”
“Oh. Sorry. What did you say?”
“I said hurry up and get changed. Becca will have that meatloaf ready before we know it, and then she’ll call us to fix a salad and set the table. And there will go our alone time.”
“Just give me a minute.” He stooped to retrieve his shirt, his thoughts whirling. This bedroom didn’t have an attached bath. Should he take his clothes down the hall and get changed in that bathroom? Should he strip in front of Tadder and put his clothes on in front of him? He worried his lower lip.
“Here,” Tadder said as he took the clean shirt and draped it over his shoulder. “Let me help you get started.” He raised his hands and got to work undoing the buttons.
Rush stood there, frozen with desire.
Tadder brushed the shirt off Rush’s shoulders to have it land on the floor and stared down at his torso. “You’ve got Pepto Bismol on your undershirt too.”
“That’s okay.” He reached for the shirt on Tadder’s shoulder.
Tadder cupped Rush’s cheek in his palm. “That has to be sticky. Now raise your hands.”
Rush did as he was ordered, and the shirt he held flopped over his face. Jesus, could he be any more gauche? “I’m sorry.”
Tadder brushed it aside
Oh my God! He’s staring at my mouth. Does he want to kiss me?
“Yes, I do want to kiss you.”
Rush had said that out loud? “Excuse me while I drown in a puddle of mortification.”
“Don’t, babe. If you don’t want me to kiss you, then I won’t.”
“Oh, fine. Put it on me.” In a fit of bravado—did Tadder really want to kiss him?—Rush thrust the clean shirt into Tadder’s arms and yanked his undershirt up over his head.
But then he spoiled it by clutching the undershirt to his chest.
“Don’t be embarrassed. I’ve seen you shirtless plenty of times in the pool.”
That was right. God, he was being such an idiot “Just give me a minute.” He dropped the undershirt, took back the blue shirt from Tadder, and shoved his arms into the sleeves.
Buy links: Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Best-Laid-Plans-Tinnean-ebook/dp/B01B8YP7K4/ref=sr_1_10?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1454376448&sr=1-10&keywords=tinnean
Tinnean has been writing since the 3rd grade, where she was inspired to try her hand at epic poetry. Fortunately, that epic poem didn't survive the passage of time; however, her love of writing not only survived but thrived, and in high school she became a member of the magazine staff, where she contributed a number of stories.
It was with the advent of the family's second computer – the first intimidated everyone – that her writing took off, enhanced in part by fanfiction, but mostly by the wonder that is copy and paste.
While involved in fandom, she was nominated for both Rerun and Light My Fire Awards. Now she concentrates on her original characters and has been published by Nazca Plains, Dreamspinner, JMS Books, and Wilde City, as well as being self-published. Recent novels have received honorable mention in the 2013, 2014, and 2015 Rainbow Awards, and two of the 2014 submissions were finalists.
A New Yorker at heart, she resides in SW Florida with her husband and two computers.
Ernest Hemingway's words reflect Tinnean's devotion to her craft: Once writing has become your major vice and greatest pleasure, only death can stop it.
She can be contacted at:
Live Journal: http://tinnean.livejournal.com/
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Tinnean/e/B004QS65KQ/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1391469662&sr=1-2-ent
If you'd like to sample her earlier works, they can be found at http://www.angelfire.com/fl5/tinnssinns/Welcome1.html