Q&A with Jordan Castillo Price

Hi Jordan!!! And a big thank you for agreeing to answer some questions, it seems fitting that you should be my first guest after the site’s hiatus – in so many ways you have been my first….

PsyCop was my first foray into the m/m genre (and what a first chapter in “Among the Living” – BEST opening chapter EVER!!); you were our first guest over at the PURLS forum and Jacob comes first – he is, and probably always will be, my top m/man – he reigns supreme!! 🙂

Hi Barb, sounds good to me, I like to get in first wherever I can!

Okay, on with the questions… So how was your trip to the UK author event?

UK GLBTQ Fiction meet was an event for authors, readers, reviewers and publishers, anyone in the UK involved in GLBTQ fiction. But it wasn’t only Brits in attendance. I met people from all over Europe, and even a couple of fellow North Americans. I had the privilege of delivering this year’s keynote address, where I talked about how strange it is to think that so many of us are devoting much of our lives and even making livelihoods in a genre that didn’t even exist ten years ago.

Are you planning on going to GRL 2013? I am DETERMINED to go next year!

I’m planning on it. It’ll be a blast to meet even more of my online friends in person.

You seem to come up with the most amazing ideas; not only in subject matter – where your imagination knows no bounds – from HAWT vampires to sexy chocolatiers or cops to magicians; but also in the publication side – do you ever think “Why??.. why did I start another monthly serial” do you find it hard to make the monthly deadlines, or is it good for both discipline and creative juices? I know I loved the concept of voting off characters in Magic Mansion.

I know why I did the serial, so no, I don’t ask myself “why.” It’s really important to me to continue to give things to my readers, special things, free things. It’s my top priority, to keep myself fresh in reader’s minds by giving them something every month. I didn’t anticipate the storytelling being as difficult as it ended up being, though. So my self-talk is more along the lines of, “I don’t see how you could estimate this project would take three or four days a month and it ends up taking three weeks.” I really thought it would be a funny lark with a bunch of weird stuff happening from the Bermuda Triangle. But of course you get into alternate dimensions and the technicalities of having a pilot protagonist and suddenly the book is a technical minefield of ways I could screw up and lose all credibility if I don’t do ten tons of research and planning. So the writing is going way slower than anticipated.

You have some the best characters, certainly some of my all time favourites (we’ve been over my Jacob love before) and Crash is one of those characters that just really connects with a reader. I know that you have done some short stories with him as the lead character – would you ever give him a full novel? I would love to read his story, maybe after you have completed Psycop.

Crash exists in the PsyCop series to mirror Vic. He’s the path not taken. He’s how Vic might have been if he’d never let on about his abilities, never landed in a psychiatric hospital, never endured Camp Hell. So as the star of his own book, I don’t think he’d work. He doesn’t have the backstory or the arc, and his voice isn’t really the right voice for a longer piece. It would be wearying to read a whole novel from his point of view. So I prefer to just enjoy him as he was meant to be, a really great side character. Someone to galvanize Vic and make him think. An uncomfortable ally.

You are the Queen of self publishing – again your creativity knows no bounds. It must be amazing to have total control over every single step in the publishing of your books; and your covers are always wonderful… but… would you ever contribute a story to another party? For instance, if Carina Press or Riptide (my favourite publishers) were to ask you to contribute a story to a collection they were putting together, would you?

It was a long process to disentangle my work from publishers, and now that I have my distribution channels all set up, it doesn’t make sense for me to go back to handing over the reins to someone else. I’m fortunate in that I enjoy many of the publisher aspects of the business. I like typesetting and ebook creation because I was a professional graphic designer before I was an author, and I have strong opinions as to how things should be. The creation of the cover art isn’t just an afterthought for me. It’s an intrinsic part of telling the story. So to give up the creation of all the visual elements is not something I would do.

Do you miss Chance? And the Petit Morts series as a whole? It was such a great series, and an inspired idea to have all these separate stories, from different authors but with one common theme.

Funny, I don’t miss Chance because he’s eternal, so I know he’s fine wherever he is. One of my favorite fantasy series was a shared universe called Thieves’ World, and the unifying element was a bar where all the adventurers hung out. My favorite element of that series was when authors would allow their characters to appear as side-characters in each others’ stories—when they overlapped. So when I proposed Petit Morts, I invented a shared character, as well as the shared but shifting locale of  Sweets to the Sweet.

Is it a definite “no” to a print run of the last Petit Morts batch?

That’s correct. It’s not viable.

I read somewhere on the interwebz that we may yet get some new Mikey and Wild Bill; is that right? As I said to you before – your depiction of Wild Bill was incredible – he was what vampires should be – Dark, Sexy, Sparkle-free!

I had thought about a third story arc for Michael and Wild Bill, but I realized that taking the story farther would completely negate their HEA. I decided I didn’t want to do that. There is a new bonus short I wrote to celebrate the second edition re-release of Elixir, Channeling Morpheus 10. It’s called Jackpot.

Any subsequent stories would be shorts like that, “where are they now” visits with the characters that don’t unravel their hard-earned ride off into the sunrise.

Okay, before I pin you down with the PsyCop question you have been dreading… here are just some silly random questions to relax you LOL

Tea or coffee?

Coffee…though I’ll drink anything…

Wine or beer?

Except wine. Unless it’s champagne in a mimosa. But I’m always happy with beer.

Which Supernatural hottie – Sam or Dean?

I’m a Dean girl. I like the bad boys.

Pizza or Chinese Takeaway? Or other…

Anything where I don’t have to do the dishes afterward.

What is the last movie you saw?

The Number Twenty Three. After I’d had the Netflix disc for something like four months—and then it turned out I’d already seen it. But I enjoyed it all the same.

Now… down to the nitty gritty… and trust me, it is not in my nature to nag – I am only asking because people would want me to 😀

When are we likely to get the next PsyCop novel?

It’s hard to say. I really want to do it right, and I’m more focused on quality than on trying to guesstimate how long it will take. My concern is that if I give a date and the date approaches, and there’s a portion of the book that needs reworking, I’d be tempted to leave something iffy as-is rather than keep honing, polishing or rewriting, all for the sake of meeting a date. And that would be a shame.

For all that I wax lyrical about Jacob, I’ve got to tell you Victor has to be one of the most compelling characters, ever! His insecurities are just so touching, I want him as a friend. Every time I spill food down my front (which is often!) I think of him J Is it hard to get back to these guys? Or are they always floating around in your head?

Thank you so much for the kind words about Vic. Some readers love him and some readers love to hate him. I had a Victor Bayne moment myself on the way to the UK Meet, where I cracked an egg and it didn’t just break like a normal egg, it exploded toward me as if we were in a wind tunnel, and got all over the shirt I was planning on wearing.

Vic’s voice is really easy in a way that other characters aren’t. Michael from Channeling Morpheus was so cold and angry and young, he was hard. Ernest from Zero Hour was so sweet and naive, he was hard. And Elijah from the upcoming Mnevermind 2 is so atypical, he’s particularly hard (though rewarding.)

Writing Vic, it’s like slipping on my favorite shirt and being thrilled it still fits just like always. It’s like falling into a conversation with an old friend you still love as much as ever.

Was PsyCop 6.1 a way for you to get back into that world? As you start writing book 7 in earnest (she asks hopefully)

I hadn’t really intended it that way. I just enjoy Halloween and wanted to put out a Halloween short of some kind, and I figured Vic seemed like he would enjoy Halloween too, and that PsyCop fans would be eager for a visit. But it turns out it is helping me figure out some plotting issues that were sending me in circles before, so it’s helpful.

With a series this developed, I think this is the point where it’ll either get really good, or jump the shark. And I am NOT jumping the damn shark. PsyCop 7 will be worth the wait.

Well that’s a wrap! Thanks so much for answering the questions – I tried to hold back on my gushing, but ya know – Crash, Chance, Jactor, Wild Bill and Mikey – these are characters that totally inspire a full on gush; so really, if I embarrassed you then you have yourself to blame! That is my day to day logic LOL thanks again Jordan xxx

There is a copy of PsyCop 6.1 up for grabs to one lucky commenter on the blog site, so comment away! If you have already read it then please still comment, and you can select a single story from Jordan’s extensive back catalogue.