For me inspiration can come in many forms, a passionate embrace beside a waterfall, a young man surrounded by a feast or a captive bound to a rock. The one thing these all have in common is they are photos that have inspired me to take up the metaphorical pen and put their stories to paper.
When I find a photo that intrigues me, I try to come up with a good, i.e. plausible, story to explain how my characters arrived at the situation depicted in the photo. I ask myself who are they and what could have happened to bring them to this point in their lives. Where are they going next?
The first photo is Scott and Kevin from Controlled Fall. They go from friends to lovers while trapped at the bottom of a ravine in New Zealand. The second photo inspired my first published short story, “Legends” about a very special birthday present. The final photo is Alexios, an ancient Greek youth who catches the eye of one of the immortals in Alexios’ Fate.
I truly enjoy puzzling out their stories and ironing out all the wrinkles in the plot. I also love the research. I will often spend a lot of time chasing down little items that only appear once in the story. Even something that may only occur in one sentence can break the spell that I, as an author am weaving around the reader. I don’t want anything to break them free before the story is completed. Logic bombs and inaccuracies are my pet peeves and I would hate to subject others to them.
Once I have the basic framework for my story, I sit down and let the characters tell me their tale. I don’t plot it out in advance. Sometimes this means that I head off in an unexpected direction, but the piece is usually better for that. I have only once insisted upon sticking to “the plan.” In “Legends,” one of the kouroi tried to join the action and I had to stand firm. M/m/m is hard enough to write without adding another man to the mix.
Look for “Legends” in the Breathless Press anthology Ad-dick-tion. “Controlled Fall” can be found in the Goodreads M/M Group’s anthology. I’ve nearly completed my current work in progress, “Alexios’ Fate.”
If you would like to see the photos that have inspired these works, take a look at my photo album Inspiration Photos for My Works In Progress on my Facebook author page: http://www.facebook.com/KaylaJameth
The room was amazing. The walls were a lush sunset red painted with imitation windows showing scenes from mythology. An inlayed stone mosaic of a scene I didn’t recognize and would have to ask Jack about covered the floor. I could only read a few of the Latin inscriptions. Amphorae in stands lined one wall. I was pleased to see none of them had flat bottoms. Some red-figure vases adorned a series of alcoves, but the piece de resistance lay in the dining area.
There were two plush coffee colored couches for reclining and a carved wooden table set in front of them. But probably the most striking thing in the room was the naked young man amidst the food, his smooth golden skin in bold contrast with the colorful food arrayed around him. His dark hair and eyes completed the vision of Mediterranean perfection.
I watched Jack recline on the couch and mirrored him. He plucked a grape from the table and pressed the sphere against my lips. I opened obediently for the fruit and pulled his long fingers into my mouth as well; licking and sucking on Jack’s fingers as he inhaled sharply through his slightly parted lips. The salt on his skin and the tart grape a perfect start to the evening.
When he withdrew his fingers, I swallowed the grape and reached for one of my own to feed to him.
The Greek god on the table chuckled and said, “If you keep that up, there will be no need for me.”
He began feeding us both tidbits from the table slowly exposing more of his smooth caramel skin as he did. His fingers brushed against my lips and periodically slipped into my mouth under the pretense of being licked clean. I could see he received the same treatment from Jack, murmuring his pleasure with every swipe of Jack’s tongue.