I am delighted to welcome Jamie Deacon on the blog today. His debut novel, Caught Inside, is one of my books of the year, and you can read my review here.
Jamie Deacon lives in a tranquil spot close to the River Thames in Berkshire, England, and has always been just a little out of place—the only redhead in a family of brunettes; an introvert far more at ease with dogs than with people; a connoisseur of simple pleasures in a society intent on the quest for wealth and fame. Despite an outward cynicism, Jamie is a romantic at heart, and, when not immersed in a book, can mostly be found writing emotional stories where young men from all walks of life are thrust headlong into the breathless, euphoric, often painful whirlwind called love.
Welcome, Jamie. Tell us a little bit about you…
Thanks so much for inviting me here today! If I were to sum myself up, it would be as an incurable book junkie who prefers the company of a select few to large gatherings, drinks way too much tea, has a weakness for desserts (especially anything involving cream), and is somewhat of a geek when it comes to watching TV quiz shows.
Your inspiration for Caught Inside?
Since I spend so much of my free time reading, it probably won’t surprise anyone to learn that this is where the inspiration for ‘Caught Inside’ came from. The moment I picked up ‘Don’t Let Me Go’ by J.H. Trumble, I fell in love not only with this captivating novel, but with the genre of m/m romance in general. Those few short chapters where Nate and Adam explore their attraction to each other in secret caught my imagination, and Luke, Theo, and the whole tangled mess of their relationship was born.
How does it feel to be a debut novelist?
Incredibly exciting but also kind of surreal. The idea that the characters who lived solely inside my head for so long are finally out there in the world, is taking a while to sink in!
Where and when do you write?
I find I’m more creative in the mornings, so that’s when I get most of my writing done. I do have a desk in the corner of my living room, but I confess my favourite place to write is curled up on the sofa with my laptop.
Are you a planner or a pantser?
From now on…definitely a planner! I started writing ‘Caught Inside’ when I had only the vaguest outline of where I wanted the story to go, and I certainly paid for it with my sanity later on, given the number of rewrites I had to tackle.
Do you do any research?
For ‘Caught Inside’, I had to do a ton. Surfing, which forms such an integral part of the story and Luke’s character, is something I knew virtually nothing about, but it was crucial to me that I made the descriptions both vivid and believable. I’m particularly indebted to fellow author Jere’ M. Fishback, a surfer himself, who read my earlier draft and helped me add that extra layer of authenticity.
Do you read inside your genre or out when writing?
I read a variety of genres all the time. Young and new adult are my favourites, although I’ll read any sub-genre—contemporary, historical, dystopian, LGBTQ… There’s something about YA and NA fiction, the rawness of the emotion, how the characters are just discovering themselves and what they want in life, that really appeals to me.
Your author heroes?
Oh, my ultimate hero has to be Benjamin Alire Saenz. He writes with an honesty and poignancy that, for me, is in a class of its own, and his prose touches my heart like no one else’s. I’m also a huge admirer of Jennifer Niven, Bill Konigsberg, and Rainbow Rowell.