Monday, September 1, 2014

I've got a visitor: Black Hurricane @PridePromo @EricaPike #guestblog #bookcontest

I love when people come and visit me...I get to dress up in as little clothing as possible and sit back and enjoy the view...

Please welcome Erica Pike to my blog today! She is here to share some insight into one of her main characters in her series Boston Boys. I love learning tidbits straight from the author's mouth about a series and a character that I get invested in...

So is the metaphorical mic, please take us away...

Black Hurricane is the third book in a series called Boston Boys. The series centers around a group of friends living in Boston and their path to finding love. Each book can be read as a standalone. However, many like to start at the beginning, and the order is: A Life Without You, Absolutely Eric, and Black Hurricane. Most characters make cameos in each other’s books, some more than others. A character that tends to steal the spotlight in every book is Eric Wesley, but he got his own love story in Absolutely Eric.

When I was looking for ideas for a guest post, I asked friends on Facebook. One said:

Why did Eric do a complete 180 from book one to book two?

This is not the first time I’ve seen this asked. It didn’t feel like Eric did a 180 to me, because I already knew the character so well, and knew that behind the snazzy retorts and confident words was a young man who was pretty naive and not very experienced with life. Everyone who’s read the books knows that although Eric is a great person, he’s pretty vain, and there are things about him that he doesn’t reveal to just anyone. We all do that - or most of us, especially when it comes to people we’re only just getting to know. You don’t want them to know your weak points; you try to emphasize your strong points (or what you think are strong points), and most of us put up a mask of how we want to be perceived. But that’s only part of the explanation.

See, I write these books from a single point of view. In ALWY, it was Adam’s view (the whole time), in AE it was Eric’s, and in BH it was Jazz’s. I do this because I like to keep a mystery about the other guy in the book. But since these are different points of view, people experience other people differently. No two people will experience me the exact same way, and only a small handful of people know me so well that they practically know me better than I do.

In A Life Without You, Adam is in his first semester of college, and that’s where he meets Eric. He starts off with some pretty heavy preconceived ideas about Eric, based on his look and flamboyancy. Some like to keep an open mind when they meet new people, but not Adam. In fact, Adam didn’t really want to be around Eric most of the time, so part of the way Adam sees Eric is with contempt or annoyance. My characters tend to be internally flawed, and Adam’s biggest flaw is his general distrust of (and often hostility to) people. He’s had a very difficult past and has had to go through rejection after rejection from his own family (this is something you’ll get to know better in future works). So when he falls in love with Jesse, he gets extremely possessive of him. You’ll see how he’s always protective around Jesse in the other books, so even though Adam and Jesse have worked through their issues, Adam’s distrust and negative outlook on people is always there. Because of this distrust and general negativity, Adam’s pretty emo. Eric even calls him on it more than once and dubs him Emoman.

Fast forward to Absolutely Eric. Here we’re in Eric’s point of view throughout the whole story, and because we’re in his head, he can’t hide anything from us. We see his insecurities, his personal flaws (foolhardiness being one of the bigger ones), and his sometimes naive outlook on life. We learn that beneath the confident guy is a guy who doesn’t really know what he’s doing and is very inexperienced when it comes to love. When he has the choice between getting to know a quiet, decent guy or going after what seems like a hot, confident guy, he immediately chooses the book by its cover. To be fair, Alex is extremely clumsy around Eric and can’t think of one interesting thing to say, so Eric quickly writes him off as “hot but boring.” See, Eric’s out on a mission: to fall in love, and he’s not wasting his time on someone he thinks he can’t enjoy life with. Eric’s nature is brash, fast, and nothing gets in his way.

Some people wonder how someone like Eric would “allow” Rafael (the hot, confident guy on the dance floor) to beat him up. Eric never “allows” it. This is an outsider-looking-in perspective when it comes to domestic abuse. “Why don’t you just leave?” “Can’t you see what he/she’s doing to you?” The problem with domestic assailants is that they take their time. It happens once. You’re shocked, but your partner apologizes thoroughly and you figure it’s just a one time deal. It was an accident. But then it happens for the second time, and your partner apologizes and promises it won’t ever happen again. Not everyone stops to think “Hang on a sec. I’m in an abusive relationship!” No, it happens gradually until the victim can’t see a way out, and sometimes even thinks that it’s his/her own fault. This does not only apply to physically abusive relationships, but psychologically abuse as well. So, Eric, being a young, inexperienced guy, becomes a victim. It happens, and it can happen to anyone because the assailants can be so cunning and sweet in between.

Anyway, let’s fast forward yet again, this time to Black Hurricane. Now we’re in Jazz’s point of view. He’s known Eric a bit longer and more intimately than Adam. Jazz is also a whole other personality. Eric, in Black Hurricane, comes off as an adorable figure, because that’s how Jazz sees him.

So, there are a few factors involved in Eric’s difference in personality, but the main ones are different points of view, and then how Eric wants to make his friends perceive him. I can promise you that he’ll come off a little differently through Cal-Al’s PoV, and through Rick’s PoV (or Benji’s - still debating on which one gets the PoV).

Let's learn a little something about Erica Pike: Erica lives in Iceland with her adorable little twin boys. She often says that her real name sounds like Klingon to foreigners. Seriously, if “Eyjafjallaj√∂kull” looks like a random strings of characters, it’s nothing in comparison to Erica’s name.

She’s been writing for several years, or ever since reading became an obsession. Aside from a business degree, Erica has taken English courses at the University of Iceland and gulped down anything that might help her in her career as an author. She takes great interest in English, but will break every single grammar rule for the sake of The Voice.

Check Erica out here:

Black Hurricane
Cover Artist: Scarlet Tie Designs
Publisher: MLR Press

We've got blurbage: Twenty-three year old Jasper Jones fell in love with Dean McQueen at fourteen, but after a disastrous relationship, Jazz would like nothing better than to see the rock star choke on his own vomit.

After a catastrophic reunion, Dean seems bent on destroying Jazz’s life. It all started when an impromptu bar performance ended up on YouTube and Jazz became an internet sensation overnight. The name “Jazdean” keeps popping up in headlines and the paparazzi stalk his every move. To make matters worse, Jazz is about to end up on the streets for the second time in his life.

In a desperate attempt to keep his home, Jazz signs a deal with Dean’s band, Black Hurricane, to perform at a couple of concerts. It feels like one of Dean’s feeble attempts to get Jazz back, but painted into a corner like he is, Jazz has no choice.

Pick Black Hurricane up here: 

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1 comment:

  1. I was curious about Eric's character arc, too...great post!

    Trix, vitajex@aol dot com