It’s barely three years since I found out this genre even existed. At that time it probably barely did! Back in May 2008 a friend on Live Journal reviewed several m/m historicals, most romances, one erotica. I was gobsmacked. I didn’t know these existed. I’d read gay fiction of the literary variety. I’d read plenty of slash on the internet. I was aware of this Yaoi stuff from Japan, but that there were actual real m/m romance books, which seemed to be primarily aimed at women readers amazed me.
So I got hold of specific books mentioned in her reviews. And then got hold of more. (It’s not so easy getting them as paperbacks in the UK. They’re sometimes horribly expensive and you can only get them from a limited number of places. Thank goodness I have an ebook reader now.) And after I read some I started thinking, I could write one of these. Not historicals, but by then I’d found that there were all the other genres available too. It was around that time I was thinking about starting to work on a novel to submit for publication. I figured I’d found my niche!
The first full on m/m story, with actual sex in it, I did was for NaNoWriMo 2008 and it didn’t really fit as romance and anyway, it wasn’t all that good. I started reading more romance, of both the m/m and m/f variety, to study the genre, and just because it’s fun! I’d never been a big romance reader, but I am now. Oddly enough, despite my own books being science fiction so far I quickly gravitated to historicals and still love them the most for reading for pleasure. It’s not so much the period detail I’m keen on, it’s the difficulties and dilemmas which are totally alien to us now but were near insurmountable obstacles to people then which interest me.
In Spring 2009 I started planning a definite no question about it romance, which eventually became Liar’s Waltz. So in less than a year I’d gone from not knowing the genre existed, to starting a novel intended to become part of it. And now in just under three years I have one book out and another one sold, another one drafted and just started another draft this weekend. All thanks to a short series of reviews by an LJ friend. Funny how something that’s almost random set me on the path to achieving one of my biggest dreams in life.
How did you find the genre?