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Monday, February 23, 2015

When it's yours to give away

The kind of mental and emotional calisthenics it takes to wrap myself around the dynamic I so love to write can be exhausting at times. It often leaves me with the undeniable truth that I am woefully out of shape. I’m not talking about physically, of course (though that is also, sadly, very true) I mean when it comes to exercising that mental/emotional muscle that gets a submissive person’s mind around the ideas their soul embraces without much trouble, I am decidedly out of practice.

I have a lot of decent theories, but I always second guess myself and wonder if that’s enough. Can I accurately write about how it feels for the character to physically do the things being asked if I have to stretch so far back in time to remember the sensations myself? If no one is ever there to be that touchstone for that part of me, can I convince readers that my character has found the love he can completely trust to be his? The question, in other words, I guess, is can I write what I don’t know or can barely remember?

The age old argument that Stephen King never dressed up in a clown costume and murdered people comes to mind. Yet he wrote about it convincingly enough that people around the globe have dire clown phobias.

That’s right. I blame Stephen.

Whatever the case, he was able to sufficiently imagine that creepy clown’s mind-set enough to convince people of its authenticity. A scary enough proposition, if you ask me, that he could understand that kind of mind-set, but he could. And he conveyed that understanding pretty darn effectively. I can’t tell you how he did that, but I can say that if he can be a devilish clown for a book, then it shouldn’t be such a stretch that I can trust instincts that are already there to inform my writing about what it might be like if…

So I write my stories from the submissive point of view because even if I can’t put myself in their position—more’s the pity—I can imagine it, and dig into what I would hope it would be like (for the good bits) and examine my own greatest fears of how it could go wrong, and figure out how to fix them after the fall. What would I need to recover from that? What would I hope for in a Dom to set me at ease enough to trust again? Can it even be found there? Would having a Dom help or hinder the regrowth? What would it ultimately feel like to give that trust after not trusting for so long?

Sometimes, my doubts tell me I can’t possibly write what I haven’t experienced, or haven’t experienced in a very long time. That is where research comes in very handy, of course. But at the end of the day, I write stories that are the emotional journeys of the men I write about. I know emotions. I understand feelings. I can draw from what I know about trust, about broken trust, about learning to live and love and be something under my own terms, that makes the world an okay place to live in again. That is my experience, and it’s mine to share, just like, when they finally recover from the trauma and the hurt, my guys can rebuild their hearts and souls so they also have something of their own to give.

That is the essence of the "Family" of the Rainbow Alley books, especially Jimmy's tale from broken, demoralized and injured beyond hope of living a normal life ever again, into a meaningful existence under his own power, with a Dom who accepts his hurts and his triumphs as Jimmy's own to keep or to give up to Cliff's tender (if strict) care.


Jimmy's been hiding from his troubled past for a long time—in drugs, drink and dangerous sex. It's always been easy to find oblivion in the restraints of men who don't really care who he is or where he's come from. When tragedy puts him in a wheelchair and forces him to fix his legs—and his life—he's not so sure he has it in him to even try. Belligerence is the only weapon he has left.

Cliff is a physiotherapist with a big heart...and a dominant streak a mile wide. The instant Jimmy Phillips rolls into his clinic, he sees a submissive headed straight for self-destruction and every protective instinct kicks in. Ignoring the dangers of getting intimately involved with a client, Cliff takes Jimmy under his wing and pries under the broken man's guard. Getting behind the anger is a challenge the Dom in him just can't ignore.

What he finds is so much more than he bargained for. Now that he's reopened all of Jimmy's old wounds, he's not so sure he has what it takes to help his new submissive heal. All the control Cliff can muster can't hold Jimmy's crumbling world together, and now Cliff faces not just the loss of a sub, but his own fears that he was never worthy of Jimmy in the first place.

Jaime has been writing for various publishers since the fall of 2008, although she's been writing for herself far longer. Often asked why men; what’s so fascinating about writing stories about men falling in love, she's never come up with a clear answer.  Just that these are the stories that she loves to read, so it seemed to make sense if she was going to write, they would also be the stories she wrote.  

These days, you can find plenty of free reading on her website. She also writes for Freya’s Bower, Jupiter Gardens, and Total E-Bound. 

Spare time, when it can be found rolled into a ball at the back of the dryer or cavorting with the dust bunnies in the corners, she's probably spending crocheting, drawing, gardening (weather permitting, of course, since she is Canadian!) or watching movies. She has a day job, as well, which she loves, and two kids, but thankfully, also a wonderful husband who shoulders more than his fair share of household and child care responsibilities. 

She graduated some time ago from college with a Fine Arts diploma, and a major in textile arts, which basically qualifies her to draw pictures and create things with string and fabric. One always needs an official slip of paper to fall back on after all....

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