To believe the falsehoods 18th century London society told him molded a man of means, seemed to be the life of Thomas Franklin Commons.
Just as the meaninglessness of his everyday life seems inescapable due to an arranged marriage, he meets Wesley Ashfield; a curious and carefree man who forever changes Thomas’s perception of the meaning of life, love, and the struggle to be true to one’s self.
I started writing from a young age. It all started with journals. I would sit down and spill my feelings and daily activities onto paper. I still enjoy going back to those. It takes me back to where it all began for me as a writer.
When I was 14 years old, I started experimenting with short stories. I’ll be honest with you, they were terrible, but the passion was there. There was room for improvement, and I knew if I kept working at it, I would get there. It would be years before I penned my first novel.
Like many other authors, I did not start with fanfiction. I got my ideas from the people around me and through classic literature. Jane Austen was a big inspiration for me. Since I am a history buff, I decided to put all my focus on historical fiction. I immersed myself in classic literature and period dramas. This is where my characters Thomas and Wesley came from.
I consider a lot of my work controversial in a way. I write deep, human stories that are emotionally driven and cover topics that are touchy for some readers. I try not to leave anything out. I want my readers to view the things I write about from a different perspective. For example, my novel is about two gay men living in the 18th century who have a hidden romantic relationship with one another, but they are eventually caught and arrested for sodomy. During this time in my novel, being gay was a crime. I wanted to shed some light on what it may have been like for someone in their position. Although this story is romantic, it’s also tragic. Readers are faced with reality rather than a fairytale ending. How the ending of my book is perceived depends upon the reader.
Inspiration comes in many forms. As authors, it all depends on what we’re writing about and what works for us. For me, I get my inspiration through music. If I can find that one song that connects me to my characters, I can begin my journey with them. It’s like starting a new relationship. The first draft is when I really get to know them. The second draft with when we start to become friends. Anything after that, I consider them family. However, there have been times when I just couldn’t click with my characters. That’s when I start something new.
Being an author is hard work. I always say that if an author is out to make money and become famous, they’re in for a huge disappointment. The best part of being an author is when you can reach your readers on an emotional level, and for that to happen, you have to be passionate about your story. Only then is it truly rewarding.
The Secret Life of Thomas Commons is now available through print on demand.
You can reach Brittany on Twitter and through her website!