My desk changes from time to time. At the moment it's just wide enough to fit my laptop. It's shiny white plastic with a few coffee ring stains on the surface but it does the job. I also have a lovely view of a harbour here.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in a suburb where all my friends were only a few streets away from each other. I think that's why most of my characters have close bonds with family and friends; it felt very important where I was growing up. When I was younger I only wrote about stories set in similar towns; I couldn't picture anywhere different.
I loved where I lived but I think it's changed a lot now.
When did you first start writing?
Now that's a difficult one to answer. I know I started very young, exactly how young I'm not sure. I have a very vivid memory of sitting in my bedroom, in bed with a notebook on my knees and the sun shinning through the window. My old bedroom has changed a few times since then, so it must have been when I was about 5. I know it was a silly story about surfing. I still have that notebook.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
A few things. Elle May - for those who don't know - is a pen name. At the moment I am in the process of sending off a manuscript to publishers under my real name. The outcome hasn't been very rewarding and it's very disheartening when you have poured so much love and time into your book baby, and a publisher doesn't even have the decency to issue a response.
I started writing erotica privately, just to stretch my skills. Then after a while I decided to post a few things on Literotica and shortfiction. The feedback I got was so positive and it really made me think about what to do next. So, here we are.
Last year I also attended a talk by Joanna Penn. It was all about self-publishing and making a living doing it. I had her at the back of my mind all the time, pushing me forward.
Why do you choose to write under a pen name?
I think mostly because I don't know what's going to happen in the future. I'm not ashamed to be writing erotica but I know I want to release other books for children later on, and I don't want my erotic fiction hindering that.
It's also a little exiting having a pen name, it's a different side of me I don't see much.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I love being somewhere else for a while. I love the fact that writing, just like reading, can transport me to another time and place. It's great being able to explore a different world or create different people. You can be someone else.
I also love that sometimes the stories don't end up as you expected them to, even as a writer. Sometimes the characters force you to take it in a different direction. You can do all the planning you want, but until you actually put pen to paper, everything can change.
What is your writing process?
It differs from day to day.
The first book I wrote, I planned and planned. I had the whole story arc on paper and wrote it that way. Another story started by me sitting down one day, starting at chapter one and I didn't stop writing. I didn't even edit it after each day like I try and do normally. I decided that I was just going to let my creativity come out on the page. I did have a basic idea of plot line but that was about it.
For 'The One Exception' I had the characters and the situation in mind, but I only came up with the idea of an ex-boyfriend showing up much later on in writing. I enjoy being spontaneous like that; I think having to know where your story is going at ever stage can hinder your creative spark.
What are you working on next?
I've just started working on a futuristic/space erotica tale. It's going to be in Volumes, so volume 1 will be free and the others you will pay for.
The protagonist is a woman and at the beginning she is just supervising the release of a new robot. Who knows where the characters will take me then. I'm hoping they'll be a chapter to suit everyone.
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First in the Forbidden Future Series. Naomi must battle with her inner desire towards a robot she designed. Will she give in to her desires and risk losing her job in the process?
A hot erotic short story.