Interview with A. E. Leitz

Do you remember the first story you read that had a really big impact on you?
Actually there were two "oldies but goodies" I found in a used bookstore and read just before I turned nineteen: "The Adventurers" and "The Betsy" both by Harold Robbins. I led a very sheltered life growing up (as I share in my book "From Sheltered to Show-Off"). I liked "The Adventurers" so much I looked for another title by Robbins, I didn't care what it was. Quite by chance it was "The Betsy" which gave me a better understanding of the politics behind the closed doors of big business, and as a result was a big help in my career moves.
Which type of writers inspire you?
All of the writers who have exciting tales in their stories. As for adventure stories, the first two that instantly come to mind are Stephen King and Dan Brown. You never know what twist or turn is coming next!

Mostly, I enjoy books that progress in an orderly fashion, includes "cozies" by writers such as Lee Child, Michael Connelly, and J. A. Jance. Procedural stories always intrigue me because there is a logical progression to the story's outcome.

For recreational reading, I enjoy "funny fiction" provided by the many books written by Janet Evanovich and Carl Hiaasen.
How did you get started writing erotic literature?
On one of my many road trips, I was thinking about the parties and situations my friends and I found ourselves in after high school. My mind started wandering and envisioned a fictional version of myself. One that had none of the restrictions that my real self had due the religious brainwashing I had when I was young.

I have always liked reading erotic literature. It make me feel free, and also makes me feel good. I'm also a hopeless romantic. I decided to start writing "soft" erotic books with a romantic thread running through, just the way I like them. Many other people also agree!

The resulting stories are the fun escapades my friends and I lived in my "alternate reality." I started making notes and eventually expanded them into the stories that are now available for your reading enjoyment!
Do you read any non-fiction?
I can still remember a surprisingly intriguing, well written non-fiction book I bought from Amazon a couple of years ago. It was recommended to me by J. A. Jance, "Breaking the Code: A Father's Secret, a Daughter's Journey, and the Question That Changed Everything" by Karen Fisher-Alaniz. And, it was the first book she had ever published!

I think it held a special interest for me because my grandfather also went through many mental ordeals and suffered PTSD in the "Pacific Theater" (as it was called) during WWII.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up not to far from the Pacific Ocean, in a very small community, where everyone new everybody else. My parents were ULTRA conservative Christians, so my first exposure to "real life" was through my friend Cassie. I was the original "Wild Child" in my class at the high school. In our sophomore year, Cassie and I both rebelled by going bra-less, in direct violation of school rules. I think that was the original spark to my current writing.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I really miss my younger years of growing up. (Everything before age 21!) By writing about my experiences during that time, I can not only re-live them, but my readers can also experience life through someone else's life!
How much research do you do?
Since all of my books are based somewhat on personal memories (and it seems I have zillions of them!) I draw on my own memory for most of my original research. If I don't remember the finer points of something, I use a search engine to verify the facts.
What's the story behind Truckstop Shower?
The plot behind the book is that a female fuel desk employee and a truck driver find love and romance, which begin as the employee boldly joins the driver for an erotic sharing of a co-ed shower at a truck stop.

I have a friend who is a truck driver owner-operator, as they are called, and I have ridden with him cross country on several trips. When told me a joke about his "Requesting Co-Ed Showers" from a particular truck stop chain, I thought it was hilarious and then developed it into an erotic love story.

I'll also mention that the truck stop chain has since remodeled all of their truck stops and no longer offer any "Co-ed showers." Sorry guys!
Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just see where an idea takes you?
I do work from an outline which starts in my mind's eye, then I write it down so I don't forget and important building blocks to the story. This is sometimes scratchy notes, and sometimes I using my laptop. The notes consist of a long list of incomplete sentences, which helps me determine the order of the sub-plots.

As for overall plot, it may sound strange, but I have will have either just the beginning or end in mind. That is to say, if I know how I want a story to end, but not begin, I may keep writing chapters starting at the end and keep adding chapters as a series of prequels.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
In the past I worked with an academic textbook publisher and did proofreading of college textbooks, so I was exposed to the traditional print media method. I also helped format a "Clinical Lab Guide" for a major hospital to help doctors to consistently interpret the test results from their local hospital laboratory.

Until self-publishing through ebooks became available, it was virtually impossible to get anything published for less than a small fortune, even though I knew all the steps and shortcuts. And the chance of finding an agent, and then actually selling anything (having books carried in-stock by a brick-and-mortar store) was less than zero.
Do you proofread/edit all your own books or do you get someone to do that for you?
I am quite experienced in the publishing field. I start out proofreading my own material, and then I have another editor do a line-by-line edit. By first proofing my own material first, I often re-work and tweak a lot. At some point I have to quit re-writing and say "enough is enough!" and turn it over to my associate.
When did you first start writing?
I did a some writing in high school, but the subject matter never interested me much. It wasn't until I started writing down my own life's experiences, then elaborating on them (with MUCH artistic license) that it really became fun.

In the past I have had a jobs writing software and technical writing. Sometimes on a late night project I could barely keep my eyes open, despite loads of caffeine.

Writing down my experiences and turning them into erotica is so much more exciting that sometime I find myself at the keyboard at two or three in the morning before I realize the time! Funny thing is, I can never sleep in, and I'm not really all that tired the next day.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I always check out the new releases at various online bookstores.
Do you listen to audiobooks?
I listen to audio books when I have to drive long distances. That also gives me a better idea of character voices in my head when I am formulating a story so the dialogue is more realistic. When I read an ebook by an author I've listened to via audio, the narrator used for that writer's style is automatically "plugged in" to my head when I read a print or ebook later by the same author.
Do you write full-time or part-time?
Currently, I am writing part time as I fit it into my schedule. It is a blessing in disguise that I am on the road a lot in my current job. I get a lot of story ideas while driving and work out the scenes in each chapter, then and I can jump on the computer in the evening and pound it out quickly. "Truck Stop Shower" took only three days to write (the first 90%), thanks to my pre-planning. The last 10% took a full week to add various details and smooth out scene transitions. Only then do I start proofreading for grammar and fine-tune the formatting for publication.
How many books have you read?
I've probably read or listened to more than 1,000 books in just the last 10 years. I read and/or listen to about 2 per week. I don't limit myself to any one genre, except to say I enjoy fiction more than anything else. Mature fiction, young adult fiction, mysteries, or whatever. The main thing is that within the first two chapters it must hold my interest and keep moving forward. I've probably put down 50 or more books that I just "couldn't get into."

One I remember in particular that I gave up on was written by a "creative writing professor" at some college. His primary story kept getting blurred by so many trivial details relating to the characters and their lives that I never figured out the plot (if, indeed there was one)!
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I like to spread my time among my many different groups of friends, their partners, and our various "toys:" quads, motorcycles, boats, houseboats. The people I'm with and our choice of toys for the weekend determine where we go. My idea of "roughing it" is traveling with a 5th wheel trailer, my female orange tabby cat, a full-size shower somewhere nearby, and my BFF boyfriend.
Published 2014-10-26.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Sexy Lexi: Exhibitionist Tells All
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 13,280. Language: American English. Published: November 16, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » Comedy/Humor, Fiction » Erotica » Literary Erotica
Lexi tells about growing up with very restrictive parents and very little supervision. She tells about becoming a nudist, then an exhibitionist, along with her best friend Trish. Follow the action on a holiday cruise as they wear very little during part of their voyage - sometimes only body paint. (First in the series).
Truckstop Shower: Finding Love Again
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 11,340. Language: American English. Published: August 12, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » Comedy/Humor, Fiction » Romance » Adult
A heartwarming story of two people who thought they would never share love again. A joke is shared between a driver and a cashier which leads to a daring plan by "SS" to provide a "co-ed shower." Follow along as the couple get to know and explore each other in more ways than friendship.