Brandon Witt’s outlook on life is greatly impacted by his first eighteen years of growing up gay in a small town in the Ozarks, as well as fifteen years as a counselor and special education teacher for students with severe emotional disabilities. Add to that his obsession with corgis and mermaids, then factor in an unhealthy love affair with cheeseburgers, and you realize that with all those issues, he’s got plenty to write about….
CC: Have you written characters that are someone you know?
BW: I have! A lot of my characters are taken from someone I know, actually. But, The Imperfection of Swans was directly taken from my best friend. It’s even his picture on the cover. The book was inspired by Kevin’s struggle with anxiety and eating disorders, as well as his dream of opening a wedding dress shop. I also used his experience growing up in an Italian family. I was so honored that Kevin was willing to let me use so much of his life to directly and indirectly inspire that novel. And, it was an amazing experience, even after all of our years of friendship to get to know him on a completely different level as I interviewed him on multiple occasions. I understood aspects of him I’d never fully grasped before.
CC: What do you like about being a Featured author at GRL?
BW: I LOVE GRL. Though I was a nervous wreck the first time, it’s now such a comfortable place. It’s one of the few places I really fit in. We are all there for the same reason. It’s amazing to have people want to talk to me because they enjoy my work, and it’s humbling to meet authors face to face that I look up to so greatly. This may be my last year to attend for a while, due to finances, and that thought saddens me greatly. But, I love it. Love it, love it, love it!!!
CC: If you could spend time with one of your characters, what would you do?
BW: Easy! I would spend time with Brett Wright, who is one of the main characters of my Men of Myth series. He is part merman, and I’m DESPERATE to go be with him and his mer family under the ocean. Writing that was so wonderful, every moment was so vivid that it almost felt like I was there. Almost. If I could have the chance to really live among the mers….. I wouldn’t have to think twice. (except for my whole terrified of sharks, thing. Though, Brett would protect me.)
CC: What has been the best review of one of your books?
BW: My favorite is when I get emails from readers thanking me for writing about characters that they feel reflect their own lives and struggles. I often get reviews that some of my books are too dramatic or over the top—like my character with the eating disorder, the one who was a recovering alcoholic and drug abuser, the one who was a survivor of child abuse…. When I get emails from people about those characters and they tell me that I obviously ‘get it’ and that they were touched, changed, or felt seen because I wrote a character that mirrored their own lives… Wow! It doesn’t get better than that!
CC: Have you ever had a trailer made for one of your books?
BW: Oh. My. Lord! I completely forgot about this. I think I blocked it intentionally. Yes. I had a trailer made for my Men of Myth series. I paid $100, which was a ton of money at the time (sadly, it still is a ton of money). It was trailer company, so I had very high expectations. I was so excited and waited weeks and weeks. Then it came in. I cried. Later I laughed. I never showed it to anyone. Never advertised it. I was so humiliated. It’s horrid. Even some names and such are pronounced incorrectly. I hadn’t thought of it in years. It took a few minutes, but I found the link. I’ve never shared this before. So, here you go! See if you can get all the way through it without cringing. (I just tried to watch it. I made it about 15 seconds!)
Please refresh to get the video above.
Brandon’s Most recent release, Son of Money
Randall Morgan, youngest son of one of Seattle’s wealthiest families, rejected his family’s money to live free of their control and pursue his career as a photographer. To make ends meet, Randall does erotic photography and massage—a secret he keeps from his family so he can remain a part of his young niece’s life. But the price of that relationship is high, and Randall is slipping under his family’s thumb.
Noah Carroll is the spokesperson for the Seattle Humane Society, and the city holds a special place in his heart. When fate intervenes during a pet adoption at the humane society, Noah finds himself face to face with his first love—Randall.
While Noah and Randall are not the teenagers they once were, the flame of a first kiss long ago draws them together. Their romance is just beginning to grow, but someone is out to destroy Randall and expose all he keeps hidden.
When secrets and rumors thrust Randall into the public eye, his relationship with Noah isn’t the only thing that comes under threat.
Come back next week, when we interview Tina Blenke.