Tempting Freebie – Introduction to Keira Andrews and Leta Blake

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Hi! This is Leta and Keira, authors of the Tempting Tales series from Ellora’s Cave. We published the first book in the series, Earthly Desires at the end of June, and are hoping the second book will be out before the end of the year. These novellas are erotic, m/m tales inspired by fairy and folk tales. We’re giving away an electronic copy of Earthly Desires, so please comment if you’d like to win it!

We decided that answering some faux interview questions might be a fun way to introduce ourselves.

1. What is it about fairy and folk tales that inspires you?

Keira: I love that many of these stories – particularly fairy tales – are larger than life, with epic journeys and romances. There’s so much freedom in the fantasy genre to create and expand on worlds that are so different from our own. Yet the characters face the same struggles we do, and we can connect with their struggles. I’m also a sucker for a happily ever after!

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Art by Threadless. Buy a t-shirt from them.

Leta: Keira stole my answer. Haha! Actually, to go a bit further with it, the most inspiring thing to me about fairy tales is how deeply erotic and symbolic they often are. On the surface, a story like Little Red Riding Hood, for example, is about a child on her way to Grandmother’s house with a basket of goodies who is waylaid by a dangerous wolf and the potentially terrible outcome of that. Generally, people see it as a tale of stranger danger, but it’s a highly charged tale of sexual temptation at its core. It’s not just the fear factor of the scary bad wolf that sends a thrill up the reader’s spine, but the fact that an elemental part of us recognizes the sexual awakening within the story and wants Red to be lured by the wolf to whatever outcome might befall her.

Fairy tales and folk tales are already sexually charged, and finding a way into those stories, so that I can play with the symbolism in ways that are fun or new-to-me, is very inspiring.

2. Why have you chosen to re-write the tales with homosexual characters, specifically m/m couplings? Do you plan to ever branch out to f/f tales?

Keira: We all grew up with these stories of princes and princesses, and we thought it would be exciting to reimagine the tales with two male protagonists. We also really dig hot guys having sex together. 😀 We’re focused at the moment on m/m, but I’m certainly not opposed to f/f, which is underrepresented in the romance genre, in my opinion.

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Art by Natalia Lopes.

Leta: There is definitely an appeal to hot men together, but, for me, the larger interest has always been in imagining how archetypal situations feel different and play out in different ways when the sex or gender of the protagonists are changed. I enjoy thinking about the various ways that Sleeping Beauty is a different story when Beauty is Beau, and he’s a very handsome dude. Because changing up the genders and sexes can be so much fun, I do hope to one day look at the f/f side of things and to possibly explore some trans characters within fairy tales settings. At this point, though, it appears that the first four stories will definitely be m/m. I have a story featuring a more gender-bending character in mind for Fall 2013, though, if our insane writing schedule goes according to plan. And I’d love to do a f/f tale in 2014, perhaps.

3. What was your favourite fairy tale as as child? Has it changed as an adult?

Keira: As a kid my favourite was Cinderella. I loved the Disney movie and that everyone was mean to poor Cinderella but she rose above it and found her prince. I actually don’t think it’s changed as an adult. I do have more appreciation for the darker tales that freaked me out as a kid (Hansel and Gretel was so upsetting to me!), but at heart I’m a hopeless romantic.

Leta: As a child, my favorite was The Elves and the Shoemaker. Now that I’m older, I think I like the more terrifying and symbolically erotic stories like Bluebeard, Rapunzel, or Red Riding Hood.

4. What other writing do you or have you done in the past? What can we anticipate from you aside from Tempting Tales in the next few years?

Keira: I’ve written a number of contemporary and historical romances, as well as a YA novel. Along with our m/m fairy tales, I’m working on a post-WWII historical at the moment. Also have many other ideas, so you can expect a variety of books in the future!

Leta: In the next year, in addition to the tales, I hope to finish my LGBT-themed coming-of-age book set in the recent past of the 1990s. I sincerely hope to find a good home for it in 2013. I have several novels of magical, speculative, and contemporary fiction in the works as well, and hope to have them completed over the next couple of years. I am eager to get these books out into the world. Some of them have really taken their time coming to fruition. In the end, I hope those who read them enjoy the stories as much as I’ve enjoyed writing them.

Don’t forget to comment to win an e-book of our first book in the Tempting Tales series!

Leta Blake and Keira Andrews write fairy tale inspired m/m erotica and romantica with Ellora’s Cave. Check out Earthly Desires, the first book in the series, available for purchase at AmazonBarnes and Noble, and Ellora’s Cave.

About Leta Blake

Author, mother, wife, and working on becoming stellar at life.

Posted on October 9, 2012, in Keira Andrews, Leta Blake and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 21 Comments.

  1. Hi Leta and Keira!

    What an interesting twist on the fairy tales!! Sounds intriguing!!

    Hugs,
    jan

  2. I love fairy tales, but I prefer the originals, not the we-have-to-take-the-scary-stuff-out versions you often find now. It’s amazing how dark and brutal some of them are, especially Russian fairy tales, but the hero still overcomes all the obstacles;).

    • Tina, are you familiar with Deathless by Catherynne Valente? It’s a really wonderful book based on the Koschei myths and brilliantly executed. If you’ve not read it, I think you might enjoy it given what you say here about liking the brutal and dark Russian tales. 🙂

  3. You’ve created an intriguing twist with the fairy tales. Can’t wait to read it.

  4. I too love the blood-and-guts original tales, rather than the sanitized versions, and I’m dying to see how you twisty ladies interpret them in the m/m setting!

    • We love all that, too. Our first book, Earthly Desires, is a more whimsical read, but our second book is a darker tale. It should be out in a month or so. 🙂 Thanks, Anya!

  5. It was very interesting to read your replies about this. I find awesome changing the genre of the protagonists and for example, I’ve always loved Cinderella so I’d love to read a m/m version of it 🙂

    • I’m glad you enjoyed our interviews! 🙂 If you win, we really hope you like our book. We had a good time writing it and love it when our readers have a good time reading it.

  6. Sounds like a great book. Please include me. Thanks!

  7. Nothing better than messing with archetypes! I also love reading the unedited versions of Grimm’s Fairy Tales–bone chilling stuff. Thank you for a chance to win your book!

    • We love the bone chilling Grimm’s stuff, too. Our first book, Earthly Desires, is more whimsical, but the next one is darker. Thanks for registering to win! We’ll announce winners on the 15th! 🙂

    • Urb! I’m pleased to announce that you’re be the winner of our book. Let us know what format you’d like to receive and we’ll send it your way.

  8. I love to look at things in new ways, from different POVs. Whole new worlds and insights emerge. That’s why stories never get old. Glad to be blogging with you ladies.

  9. So nice to “meet” you, Leta and Keira.

  10. So nice to meet you both. I love the idea of the m/m twist on fairy tales. This is not something that I have seen before but I really like the idea of 🙂

    • Thank you! We’ve really enjoyed playing around with these stories, and the change in dynamic when making it m/m makes it all the more fun!

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