Hi, you're talking to Fiona Glass and I have a new book out at Riptide Publishing, called Necessity's Door. It tells the story of Jake, a cop who goes undercover as a male prostitute to trap a nasty new crime boss with a liking for rough trade, and finds himself being sucked (sink, line and hooker?) into the lifestyle he's forced to lead.
So, why "Necessity's Door"? It's an odd title, and not obviously linked to the plot or the name of the main character, or anything like that. And yet, when you know the secret, it's perfect for the story.
Usually I like to start off with a title even before I've set pen to paper (or finger to keyboard, in these days of modern technology). The title and the idea come hand-in-hand and are inseparable, because in many ways the title is the story. But for some reason this particular story fought back. I first wrote it several years ago and even then I struggled to think up a really good title for it. It went through about three before I went back to 'the number I'd first thought of', but I was never really happy with it.
When I came to rewrite the story for Riptide I still wasn't entirely convinced by that original title, but stuck with it anyway as a working title, just to get the story into their slush pile. Needless to say, although they liked the story, they weren't convinced by the title either and asked me to change it. I was quite happy to come up with something else... except that I couldn't! I played around with all sorts of variations on rents and mortgages - an important theme in the book - but nothing really seemed to hit the spot.
Quite often I base my titles on quotations - from books, poems, or letters by famous people. I have two different dictionaries of quotations and scour them on a regular basis - and it was at this point that I turned to them. The Little Oxford Dictionary of Quotations is particularly useful because you can search by theme, so again I set to work with mortgages, rents, payback, and anything else I could think of. At first I drew a blank, so I widened the search to vice. After all, if a male prostitute, however undercover, isn't involved in vice then I don't know who is!
And I struck gold, with this quote from Daniel Defoe's famous novel Moll Flanders: "Vice came in always at the door of necessity, not at the door of inclination."
It was perfect! Jake was being swallowed up because of the necessity of his job, not because he wanted to, and that necessity was leading to further temptations in a life of vice. I wanted to use that quote!
Of course the whole quote was far too long for a book title and even shortening it to The Door of Necessity was a bit of a mouthful, so I turned it into Necessity's Door, and the good people at Riptide loved it too. And the rest, as they say, is history. You'll have to read the book for yourselves, though, to find out just how much it suits the story.
by Fiona Glass
Being an openly-gay detective in Birmingham comes with its share of problems. For one, the pay is awful. For another, Jake always gets stuck with the crappy undercover jobs. Like posing as a prostitute to catch the new crime boss in town—a man notorious for rough sex with pretty young rentboys.
Jake’s latest op is fraught with difficulties, all of them men. Like his partner, Mac, who he’s secretly fancied for months. And his new client, Graham, who he keeps sleeping with for reasons far beyond maintaining his cover. And of course there’s the target, Frank Warren, who’s much harder to lure than Jake had anticipated.
The longer the job drags on, the tougher it gets for Jake to juggle his own needs with those of the job. They may be closing in on Warren, but Jake’s heart—and moral compass—are slipping through his fingers. Mac is there to back him up, but is he really the man Jake needs? Tough to tell among all those lies Jake's been telling himself and everyone else.
Like the sound of it? Want to read more? There’s an excerpt and further details at the Riptide Publishing website, so feel free to click on over there and have an explore.
During this blog tour I’m holding a little contest with a variety of prizes. There’s a perfect-bound (ie print) copy of my earlier gay cop story ‘Any Means Necessary,’ a print copy of Radgepacket Volume 2 which contains my gay short story ‘Rock and a Hard Place,’ and various bits and pieces of general swag!
All you need to do is answer the following three simple questions, the answers to all of which can be found in Necessity’s Door. When you have the answers, email them to me personally here and I’ll put all the correct entries into a hat (well, actually a willow-pattern bowl, but who’s checking...) and the first correct entry drawn from the bowl at the end of the blog tour will win the prize.
Here’s the questions:
1. What is the real name of The Blue Baboon gay club?
2. What colour is Frank Warren’s hair?
3. How much does Warren pay Jake for sex?
Think you know the answers? Then get emailing and good luck! I’m looking forward to hearing from you. And in the meantime if you’d like to find out more about me and my work, then please just drop into my website (http://www.fionaglass.com/) or my blog (fionaglass.blogspot.com).