1. What is it that fascinates you about the law enforcement genre and careers? Do you touch on these themes in your novel, "Undercover Sins"?
My friends like to say it’s a uniform fetish, but I respect those able to handle a police career. Police get a lot of hate from those they’re protecting. I don’t touch too deeply on the seed of my love for the law enforcers in Undercover Sins, but I also didn’t paint their lives in a glamorous light either.
2. "World on Fire" and "Water Waltz" are more contemporary and paranormal respectively. Why do you enjoy writing in different genres?
I stick to what I daydream about, I guess. Law enforcement is my “real” genre when I want to stick to real life. But when I want to make up a world to live in, I venture into fantasy and paranormal. For Water Waltz I created a world built on all the things I love from early 1900s. Oh, and then added demons, angels, and devils to the mix.
3. What are you working on at the moment?
I’m focusing on a sequel for Water Waltz at the current time. I’m also rewriting (practically entirely) a few older manuscripts. One is another law enforcement type with a private investigator entitled Seeking Solace. The second—entitled Comatose—is another angel and human story unrelated to Water Waltz and focuses around a war.
4. As a fellow cat owner, I'm more than familiar with the feline need to sit on all the note papers ever, at the most awkward moments. Do you have any amusing cat and writing related anecdotes?
I had a cat that would jump on the chair behind me and try to “sneak” onto my lap. I guess she thought if she moved slowly enough, the laptop would magically disappear and she’d get my lap without my notice. It never worked for her that way, but I often rewarded her with lap time after her attempt was thwarted.
5. When and why did you begin writing?
It’s hard to say. I liked to write for as long as I remember, but I was never focused enough to stick to a plot. In 2006 I wrote my first m/m story—Seeking Solace—for an online forum. I’m now redoing it to publish. I had just lost my best friend and writing was a way to cope with the feelings I didn’t want to verbally communicate. The plot was entirely unrelated to my experience, but the main character dealt with a similar loss to mine.
6. What is the hardest part of writing?
Time. I work full time and I don’t always want to write when I get home.
7. Do you ever suffer from the dreaded writer's block? If so, what do you do about it?
Oh boy, do I! I used to fret about it and believe my writing life has ended, but I now ignore it and fill my time reading. I trust my muses will return from wherever they run off to when they feel good and ready. So far they always have.
8. Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?
I watch a lot of anime. Anime has a lot of angst and drama to fuel my plot bunnies. One line can pop a whole plot idea in my head. The ideas don’t always make sense from the place of inspiration though. The idea for Water Waltz came from a scene in the FX show Archer.
9. What are you reading now?
I finished Emperor’s Edge series by Lindsay Buroker. Not one from the romance genre, but still highly enjoyable. I have The Dragon Tamer by Ana Bosch on my list next.
10. How long have you been writing, and who or what inspired you to write?
I’ve been writing since I could make sentences. But I started writing m/m stories in 2006. I have a friend in Canada that pushed me into reading m/m and later she gave me that shove into writing it as well.
11. Do you have a favourite character from your books and why are they your favourite?
Can authors pick a favorite from their “children”? It seems almost cruel. But I do have favorites. Shhh.
Each story I tend to pick one out that I love above the rest. Currently my favorite is Fremont, the devil from Water Waltz. He’s headstrong and speaks his mind regardless of class or politeness. I also like his tail.
12. Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say?
I don’t hear from my readers all too much. I think the most feedback I received came from Undercover Sins and the chess scene. Mostly I get a comment and a snicker about it. I do love to receive comments letting me know how much a reader liked a novel of mine. Even just one sentence makes my day.
13. What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I need background noise and an outside distraction to drown out in order to focus on writing. I also do the best writing during the day or while in bed.
14. What dreams have been realised as a result of your writing?
I was asked for an autograph and a picture. That was the best feeling.
15. Final question, which I ask everyone I interview - if you were to come back as a plant in the next life, what would that plant be and why?
Oh! What a fun question! I think I’d want to be a lilac bush. I love the smell of lilac flowers.
In a land where humans are enslaved as sexual toys, angels and demons are in constant conflict with their playthings. The demon Varun works with STAR, an organization devoted to human liberty, and it’s a never-ending battle.
Two years ago, the angel Triste broke Varun’s heart by choosing to be his butler instead of his beloved, giving Varun no explanation and no hope. However, that doesn’t mean that Triste will simply sit back and watch as Varun takes the human Elden under his protection, and Triste’s secret investigation will unearth terrible secrets, including the kernels of a pernicious plot.
Despite appearances, Triste and Varun are still in love, and Varun may well risk everything to protect Triste and discover why the angel left him heartbroken. But a still worse danger hangs over them as they seek to calm the threat of a catastrophic war.
Buy it: here and from Amazon here.
Hayley B. James is a lifelong resident of New Mexico with no plans to pack up and leave just yet. She lives with her masochist cat in a house passed down from her grandmother. She grew up living in her fantasies but never writing any down. As a child she went to bed early just to have time to think of her stories before sleeping. After she found M/M slash online, she wanted to form her incoherent daydreams into something others could read. Supporting friends gave her the push she needed and encouragement to grow into a better writer.
Hayley reads mystery novels, real life crime and police procedure books, and the monthly police reports submitted online by her local department. On holidays she can be seen taking gifts to the fire and sheriff departments by her house. Hayley is fascinated by law enforcement but has never considered it a career path. She's happy being a professional inside of a small office and writing during her spare time.
Visit her at her blog: http://www.hayleybjames.com/; at Twitter: http://twitter.com/HayleyB_James; and at Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/HayleyBJames. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.