We’re so pleased to welcome author Aidan Wayne and the tour for their latest release from NineStar Press, Grounded. Aidan has answered a few questions for their stop here today, and there’s also a giveaway, so be sure to check out those details below.
Q: When did you write your first story and what was the inspiration for it?
A: My very, very first story ever was a short story I wrote in the third grade about my sibling and I planting flowers in my mom’s garden. Illustrated and everything, and I think I might still have it somewhere. It was, as expected, inspired by my mom’s garden. Which has since grown to take over both her front and backyard with a mini vineyard, melons growing on trellises, and broccoli plants taller than a toddler.
I still try to include crazy witch-gardens in my books every chance I get.
Q: Do you have a writing schedule or do you just write when you can find the time?
A: It depends. I sometimes participate in writing challenges, in which case I make sure to set aside time to write at least a little bit everyday. But usually it’s just when I have time in general.
Q: Briefly describe the writing process. Do you create an outline first? Do you seek out inspirational pictures, videos or music? Do you just let the words flow and then go back and try and make some sense out it?
A: I almost never make outlines. I tend to start with a vague idea of what I want to happen in the story and where I want it to go, but ultimately the words flow and the characters talk and I do what I can with it. While I mostly write in chronological order, I often get scenes that I know will exist eventually; I write those out and piece them into the story later.
Q: Where did the desire to write LGBTQIA+ stories come from?
A: I like happy endings and I like communication and I will always want more stories that feature both, especially for LGBTQIA*, since I personally feel there will never be enough of them. My first published story pretty much represented a lot of my feelings: Loud and Clear was about a man with dyslexia so bad he couldn’t read, meeting a man with a stutter so bad he preferred to be mute. For things to work, communication—in all senses of the word—was absolutely key. And it did, of course, end happily.
Q: How much research do you do when writing a story and what are the best sources you’ve found for giving an authentic voice to your characters?
A: All the research. All of it. I’ve found my best sources are people. I read a lot of blogs and watch a lot of vloggers, and I talk to people who have personally experienced things. I once called up apple orchards to ask about about the harvesting and upkeep process. Ended up getting in touch with a ninety-five year old apple farmer who planted the trees for his orchard with his father before WWII. I still count that as one of the most awesome things that’s happened to me as a writer.
Aside from that, for general facts, the internet is incredibly helpful. I’m in the middle of writing a story about a character who is an actor in a Broadway show. I have learned so much about Broadway and New York in the process.
About the Book
Author: Aidan Wayne
Publisher: NineStar Press
Release Date: August 21
Heat Level: 2 – Fade to Black Sex
Length: 120 Pages
Genre/Categories: Contemporary, chefs, children, contemporary, sports, gay, pansexual, trans
Buy the Book: NineStar Press || Amazon || Smashwords || Barnes & Noble || Kobo
Blurb: Between raising his daughter Camille, his work as a full-time pastry chef, and his hobby of capoeira, Baz’s life is pretty full. He may be a little lonely, but he’s too busy to think about it all that much.
When his cousin Alaina introduces him to Terry, another capoeira student, Baz is instantly drawn to him. Though quiet and withdrawn, Terry ends up being a fun, interesting person who Baz can’t help but fall for. And when Baz does things, he doesn’t do them halfway.
Terry is a successful voice actor and a talented martial artist. But the fact that he’s shy, on top of being a trans man, has kept him from really dating. He likes Baz, he does—he just doesn’t want to mess up their friendship by failing at romance. Still, Baz is nothing if not stubborn, and Terry is willing to give things a try.
Baz was going to throw up.
It was finally time for the Roda Capoeira showcase. Baz’s martial arts school put on a demo once a year, and he was one of two people demonstrating advanced flips. He was ready, he’d been practicing for weeks, the show started in ten minutes, he was the eighth performer out of twelve, and he was going to seriously throw up if he thought anymore about performing in front of an audience. He was fine with regular capoeira games, the fighting dance performed in a rodacircle. But for some reason this felt a lot different from playing a game with his regular group.
Maybe it was because Andre and Aunt Emma had collaborated with the local community broadcast system, so there were television cameras around.
There was a quick rapping on the dressing room door—three sharp knocks to warn them all before it was pushed open. Someone Baz had never seen before walked in, looking for all the world like they belonged there.
“Terry!” Lydia, who was closest to the door, immediately rushed at them, throwing her arms around their neck. They looked tiny next to Lydia’s five-ten frame but didn’t buckle after being practically jumped on. “Oh my god, Terry, you’re back! Guys, Terry’s here!”
Baz turned to get a better look, grateful for the distraction, as all of the eleven other performers made their way toward the door and the short dark-haired newcomer, who quickly disappeared underneath a multitude of hugs. Dee, who had been putting on their makeup, practically tripped over themselves to run forward.
“Hey everyone,” Terry said, muffled under Dee and Alaina. “Missed you.”
“I’m glad you made it. Welcome back.” Andre grinned, clapping Terry on the back.
“Well, I couldn’t miss the showcase,” Terry said, smiling down at the floor. They spoke quietly, but in a way that carried. “And I’ll be coming back to classes finally. Got my schedule changed around. Just wanted to tell you all that I’m here. Put on a good show so I can see what I missed?”
“Yeah, of course,” Lydia said.
“I’ll let you guys finish getting ready. See you all soon.”
They left with a wave and a bunch of goodbyes, with a promise to Andre they’d come backstage again after the show.
Baz caught Alaina’s arm as she made her way back to the mirrors to finish helping Dee with their makeup. (Dee used they/them pronouns, so when it doubt, that was what Baz had learned to default to.) “Who was that? I’ve never seen them before.”
Alaina looked delighted. “That was Terry. I think I’ve mentioned him to you before? He’s the guy who does Tae Kwon Do and likes all the same bands as you. You’d be great friends. I’m so glad he’s back—I’ve been dying to introduce you. And, you know, see him again.”
“Has he been coming to capoeira for a long time?”
“He’s been pretty off and on. But it sounds like he’s going to be back.”
“Five minutes till curtain, everyone,” Andre called. “Let’s get into our seats.”
The performers all rushed around finishing up last-minute touches, and Baz was distracted enough by the commotion and the rest of the showcase that his nerves died down, at least a little bit.
About the Author
Aidan Wayne has been a jeweler, paralegal, neurofeedback technician, and martial arts instructor. And that’s not even the whole list. They’ve been in constant motion since before they were born (pity Aidan’s mom!)—and being born didn’t change anything. When not moving, Aidan is usually writing, so things tend to balance out. They primarily write character-driven stories with happy endings, because, dammit, queer people deserve happy endings too.
Aidan has several plants: Viola and Baby V., the African violets; George, the ponytail palm; Antigone, the orchid; and an unidentified succulent, the-plant-that-has-not-yet-been-named-but-is-often-called-Steve. They live with their plants on the seventh floor of an apartment building. The building has an elevator, but Aidan refuses to acknowledge its existence.
Follow the Tour
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8/21 Urban Smoothie Read
8/21 Boy Meets Boy Reviews
8/21 Happily Ever Chapter
8/22 The Novel Approach
8/23 Hearts On Fire Reviews
8/23 A Book Lover’s Dream Book Blog
8/24 Bayou Book Junkie
8/24 Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews
8/25 love bytes reviews
8/25 Stories That Make You Smile
8/25 Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words