Sometimes an author names their book something you honestly wish you’d thought of yourself. In this case, when I saw that Ivy L. James has a debut holiday novel called ‘Make The Yuletide Gay’, I immediately cursed myself for not having thought of that title myself!! But it’s clearly a testament to how talented and intelligent Ivy is, as you will see in this interview!
Hey Ivy - tell us a little more about yourself! Who are you and what do you do?
I'm Ivy, and I write queer romance and poetry!
How did you become an author?
I wrote my first story on Post-it notes as a kid, and my first novel at 15. For years I dreamed of publishing, and it finally happened at the end of 2020 with my lesbian holiday romance novella "Make the Yuletide Gay."
Who’s your favourite character that you’ve ever written?
My favorite character so far is probably Rhiannon Bordeaux from my Virginia Is For All Lovers series. She's super smart but a little odd, and she has intense social anxiety. So far she's only been a side character, but she'll get her own book soon.
Do you ever experience writer’s block? If so, how do you overcome it?
For me, writer's block either comes down to "I'm afraid" or "something's wrong." If it's fear, I have to do some soul-searching to deal with that. If it's story-related, I have to back up and rework to get things in order. Sometimes that means a complete rewrite (looking at you, "Love, Lorena"!)
What do you consider to be the hardest part of writing?
For me, the hardest part of writing is that first draft. I'm a slow drafter, but I love editing.
And how about the most rewarding?
The most rewarding part of writing is finishing. It could be finishing a manuscript, revisions, or even just a single scene. I enjoy feeling like I've wrapped something up.
What is one piece of advice you wish you had listened to, either in life or with regards to being an author?
Write what YOU want to write, not what you think other people want. (I've spent way too long struggling through a manuscript of what I thought I was supposed to write, when I could've been breezing through any of the other ideas I wanted to work on because I loved them.)
You’re putting together a party. Which characters from the Sapphic Fiction genre would you invite?
How can people connect with you?
authorivyljames.com / @AuthorIvyLJames on Twitter, Bluesky, Instagram, TikTok
Finally a light-hearted one. What ice cream flavours and toppings would you put together in your ultimate sundae?
Sweet-cream ice cream, gummy worms, chopped berries, chopped snickers, and chocolate drizzle!
If you enjoyed this interview, then make sure you’re following my social media accounts (@kblakemanwriter on Twitter and @katherineblakemanwriter on Instagram) to get all the latest updates! And if you want to support my own Sapphic Fiction journey while you’re here, The Summer We’ve Had is available now, and Love You However is coming on March 22nd!