Today we’re joined by R.J. Seeley. R.J. is an amazingly prolific author who has a number of books available. They’ve written over twenty novels. R.J. writes mostly LGBTQ young adult fiction, although they have dabbled in some other genres. They have a real love of writing and show no signs of slowing down any time soon. My thanks to them for taking the time to participate in this interview.
Please, tell us about your art.
My art is writing. I’ve been writing for years so, at this point my art ranges from full blown novels, to short stories, 10 page free e-books, and beyond. I write mostly LGBT young adult/new adult, although have ventured occasionally into the adult genre, and tend to write romantic relations, if any, between boys. At this moment I have 27 books available, but by the end of 2016 that could be a completely different story, as I am on a rebrand, edit and redesign year.
What inspires you?
Practically everything. Which I know sounds a bit like a cop out, but really. I will be walking down a street and will be hit with inspiration, my friends all find it humorous, and all try saying things to see if it strikes inspiration. I usually can write from anything, and that usually means I write ON everything.
What got you interested in your field? Have you always wanted to be an artist?
I always think I became a writer by accident, but, when I look back on it, I really always have been, I’ve always created stories and wrote them. School actually made me think seriously about writing, when I was 15, and we did a creative writing module, the spark just lit, and I was off. Within a year I’d wrote my first full blown novel, coming in at 500+ pages, Choreography. From then on, they just continued to flow out of me.
Do you have any kind of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in your work that you’d be willing to reveal?
I do a few things, but I think I’ll share my most ‘noticeable’. I like to connect things, so, all my characters aged between 11-18 all attend the same school, a huge number of them are in the same class, I will have characters from other books popping up, just for cameo roles, because I never think of my characters as done. I also like to hide Easter eggs, so, having a character from a book not yet released pop up, to give my readers a hint at what’s coming.
What advice would you give young aspiring artists?
Don’t let bad reviews stop you. This has been a big piece of advice, I think I’ve needed over the last year, as I suffer with dyslexia I get a lot of negative reviews, some not even on the story, but, I would definitely say it’s my best piece of advice. Don’t let the bad reviews stop you, you write/create for yourself, and you’re brave to share it, some people won’t like it, but that’s just how things work. Focus on the good reviews, the good comments, the ones that make you smile!
Where on the spectrum do you identify?
I identify as aromantic. After a long hard few years of trying to figure out where I fell in the spectrum I finally feel being aromantic is right. Like a big comfortable jumper!
Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field? If so, how do you handle it?
I tend to counter ignorance with fact. I tend to try and make someone understand. I’ve also had a lot of ace ignorance from friends to do with my field, unfortunately, as some decide that if I write a sex scene occasionally there is no way I could be ace. Some of their comments I ignore, others I challenge.
What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?
I think it has to be ‘You make sex jokes, I thought you were asexual’
A lot of people believing that because I can laugh and joke about sex, I must want it, it can range from downright amusing to frustrating depending on the comment.
What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?
Asexuality is valid. It took me until I was 17 to figure out I was asexual. Once I did, I felt ten times better, don’t worry that you don’t have the same urges as your friends, don’t worry about anything. You are normal. You are valid.
Finally, where can people find out more about your work?
I have a website, which is www.rjseeley.wix.com/writer, and I also have my blog www.rjseeley.wordpress.com. You can follow me on Twitter RJseeley or find me on Facebook, R.J. Seeley and keep up to date there. 🙂
Thank you, R.J., for participating in this interview and this project. It’s very much appreciated.