Today’s guest post is from Tempeste O’Riley, here to talk about her inspiration for her latest release, Desires’ Guardian. Don’t miss the giveaway link below!
Inspiration and Insanity…
I’ve been asked many times what the inspiration is for a story or for a certain character, and Chase and Rhys are no exception. However, their journeys inspiration was a lot different than that of James and Seth, so I thought I’d talk about Desires’ Guardian and what led to certain parts of the story. In Desires’ Guardian you travel along with Chase Manning and Rhys Sayer as they work through past pains, current fears, and their wobbly attempt at a relationship.
Once I realized that Chase would have his own story—which was about three chapters into Designs of Desire by the way—I knew his partner would have to be just as strong and contrary to what people perceive him as to handle Chase. The whole time I worked on Designs of Desire I had that thought in the back of my mind, as well as Chase’s development as James’s story progressed.
And before you ask, yes, I knew the secret of Chase’s past long before I began Desires’ Guardian. When I created Rhys, the character screamed out that he was perfect for Chase, but only if he could learn to see past Chase’s façade. Chase was all for this, until Rhys opened his imaginary mouth the first time, lol. You see, the characters write their own stories, I’m merely the biographer of imaginary people. (See, like the title says, insanity.) I know that sounds nuts, but trust me, most authors will tell you their characters are real, at least to them. We live in their heads and hearts as we write their stories, after all. But, the point is, I knew what I was walking into when I agreed to write the story, though I didn’t expect it to be so hard in places to write or experience.
The inspiration for certain parts came from events in the news or in my life. Others came from close friends who’ve shared their pasts and pains with me over the years. None of what you read is “real” as in, happened just as I wrote, but it is real in that these things can and so happen. I take from my imagination and from reality to form the world, people, and happenings in the story. Not an easy thing some days.
In the end, Chase and Rhys did little I expected or planned them to do. I am a panster, but because the next book in the series (Temptations of Desire, set to come out in September) happens at the same time as Desires’ Guardian I had to plot some. That about drove me insane (and we already established authors are a bit bent to begin with, lol). In the end, though, inspiration, stubborn men that don’t really exist, and the insanity that’s me, all came together to form Desires’ Guardian, a story I hope you will take a chance on and love. I honestly put a little of me into everything I write, and hope the end result is something others will find the truth in and enjoy along the way.
“James, it’s time.” Seth’s voice broke their moment, startling both men. “Gather up your Chase and hurry, please.”
Chase looked over to Seth, confused about what he was referring to. The show isn’t over, so where is he taking Jamie, and what does that have to do with me?
“Oh! Oh, good. Come on, dear.” James pushed him toward Seth and then maneuvered on his forearm crutches to follow behind. Chase followed obediently, confused but moving with the flow of bodies around him.
“What’s going on, guys?” he asked once they were at the front of the gallery. He looked around and noticed there was a large covered frame that hadn’t been there earlier.
Rhys’s brother, Dal, sidled up beside Chase, bending to whisper into his ear, “He’s got one last painting to reveal, but it’s a special one. I heard not even Britt”—the owner of the gallery—“has seen this one.”
“Really?” He peered up at Dal, again noticing how much he looked like Rhys, only a couple of inches shorter and a few pounds lighter.
“Shh… he’s getting ready to speak.”
Chase realized James now stood in front of the painting, smiling again.
“First, let me thank everyone for your warm reception and the wonderful turnout. As some of you know, I don’t really do speeches, but this last painting is special. I debated showing Inner Light, but in the end decided others needed to see the subject as I do.” James moved to the side, releasing his grip on one forearm crutch. He touched the sheet but didn’t move it yet. “You see, sometimes when people reveal who they truly are inside, we find a vile, rotting corpse, but other times, what we find….” He trailed off and touched a recessed panel.
The sheet, which Chase realized was actually a curtain, slid aside to reveal a painting of… him! Well, it was him, but not him at the same time. The artistry was magnificent, but over half his face a lion was superimposed. The lion part even had his ear cuff clipped to the furry ear. Chase gaped, barely noting the gasps and clapping that burst all around him.
Chase moved to the side, trying not to attract attention as questions and praise swarmed James. He couldn’t stop staring at the painting, trying to see how it could possibly be a representation of himself, but couldn’t. He wasn’t powerful or strong like a lion. And while he knew he was decent looking, the man in the painting had an ethereal beauty that dumbfounded him. It was both humbling and uncomfortable to look upon and hear Jamie’s voice in his head saying that was how he saw him.
Chase was startled out of his thoughts when two of his friends, Simon Tyler and Dale Miller, nudged him. “Chase! Did you know about the painting? It’s amazing,” Simon gushed.
Chase shook his head. “I didn’t. He can’t really see me that way, can he?”
“With as much as you’ve done over the years to help and protect him, yeah, I think that’s exactly how he sees you,” Dale replied. “Of course, he’s obviously blind. But then, if he showed you as you really are, no one would buy his artwork.”
Dale and Simon cackled, and Chase glowered at the both of them.
“Maybe he’s trying to make up for conning you into working with Rhys,” Simon suggested.
“Harrumph! I still can’t believe I said yes, but you really think all this was planned? Seriously?”
“Eh, ignore Simon.”
“We’re going out tomorrow night to forget about the sexy ox, so don’t sweat it,” Simon said and winked. “Now, go congratulate James and smile. You look totally wrong with the scowl on your pretty face,” he instructed, turning Chase and pushing him toward the now advancing James.
Desires’ Guardian by Tempeste O’Riley
Desires Entwined series book #2
Most people see Chase Manning as the party-boy twink he seems on the surface. Only James, Chase’s BFF, knows the depth of his loyalty and the extent of the wounds Chase carries inside. When Chase meets Rhys Sayer things don’t go well, but he can’t shake his attraction to the huge, sexy man.
Rhys is a man of contradictions and fear—a strange combination for a PI and bodyguard. He’s in a bad place emotionally when he sets eyes on Chase for the first time. When Chase puts the moves on him, Rhys insults him, thwarting any possibility of a relationship. Rhys doesn’t see himself as a complicated man, but he dreads the very kind of connection he desires.
Just as they’re trying to overcome their uncertainties, Chase is put in harm’s way. Luckily Rhys and their friends have all the right talents to help Rhys save the man of his dreams.
Other Desires Entwined series stories:
About the Author:
Tempeste O’Riley is an out and proud omnisexual / bi-woman whose best friend growing up had the courage to do what she couldn’t–defy the hate and come out. He has been her hero ever since.
Tempe is a hopeless romantic that loves strong relationships and happily-ever-afters. Though new to writing M/M, she has done many things in her life, though writing has always drawn her back–no matter what else life has thrown her way. She counts her friends, family, and Muse as her greatest blessings in life. She lives in Wisconsin with her children, reading, writing, and enjoying life.