Sunday, December 11, 2011

STORY BEHIND THE STORY - Lee Hayes - Author of 'The Bad Seed'




Lee Hayes is the author of Passion MarksA Deeper BlueThe Messiah, and the editor of Flesh to Flesh, an erotica anthology. He is a native Texan and was awarded with a master’s degree in public administration from Baruch College in 2005. He resides in Washington, D.C. and can be reached via his website

Urban Reviews:  Can you tell us a little about The Bad Seed?
Lee Hayes:  Certainly. The Bad Seed is a wickedly delightful novel that consists of two novellas, each dealing with a diabolical character that would be deemed as a “bad seed.” The novel puts a modern spin on stories dealing with lust, lies and madness. The first story, “I Guess That’s Why They Call It the Blues” deals with a insanely beautiful, but damaged young man who marries a much older, wealthy man and plots to kill him so that he can inherit the old man’s fortune. This story is a powerhouse of emotions and deals head-on with the issue of gay marriage. The way I see it, straight spouses have been plotting to kill each other for money since the beginning of time. Now that gay people are winning the right to marry this is an issue that I’m sure someone somewhere will have to deal with, sooner or later. Blues Carmichael, the title character, goes about his business of killing without pause, even as his conscience tells him to stop.

The second story, “Crazy in Love” deals with a hyper-sexual high school student who develops a fatalistic crush on his reclusive male high school English teacher. Brandon Heart proves himself to be just as maniacal and conniving as Blues in the previous story. Brandon is typical of teen that has no boundaries and has set out to define the world on his terms, whatever they may be. He has set his mind on conquering his teacher and will not let anything or anyone stand in his way. Being told “no” is not something he deals with well; it only fuels his rabid desire for conquest. Brandon possesses all the tools necessary to achieve his goals: extremely good looks, a sculpted body and a dangerous and delusional mind.

Be careful when reading these stories; it’s like Prince sang “the beautiful ones they hurt you every time!”

Urban Reviews:  Where did the ideas for these particular storylines come from?
Lee Hayes:  I wanted to take some fairly common themes that we’ve seen before in books and movies, put them in a blender, mix them up and come out with something completely new and fresh. “I Guess That’s Why They Call It the Blues” was really born from the on-going gay marriage debate in this country and around the world. As gay people fight and win the right to marry they will have to face and deal with some of the issues that have been common in straight marriages for centuries.

The second story really came from me thinking about what would happen if a male high school student developed a crazy crush on his male high school teacher? We’ve seen this story several times in movies where the high school girl falls hard for one of teachers and the drama that she brings to his life. I wondered what kind of havoc a gay male high school student would wreak in the same scenario. They say hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, but in The Bad Seed I’ve seriously upped the ante!

Urban Reviews:  Was The Bad Seed the hardest book for you to write? Why or Why Not?
Lee Hayes:  The Bad Seed was extraordinarily hard to write because this story is not structured the way most books are where you have the protagonist that readers will root for and the antagonist that readers will hate. This story puts the “bad seed” at the forefront of the novel and puts readers in the unconventional position of trying to determine if they want the bad guy to succeed. So, the challenge in writing these stories was to create villainous characters with just a touch of humanity so that readers, even if it’s in a small measure, will want the characters to win. Readers will definitely have a visceral reaction to the characters and their actions, although I’m not entirely sure what that reaction will be!  Is it love or is it hate? Or, will they love to hate them? Will they pity them or feel something entirely different? Those questions are left for the reader to determine, but the one thing I am certain about is that they will enjoy the bumpy ride as these two deadly characters leave swath of destruction down several lives.

Urban Reviews:  Is there anything you try to avoid or include when you write about gay characters?
Lee Hayes:  Yes, I typically avoid the run-of-the-mill “coming out” stories or the over-played stories about the brother who is on “down-low.”  My characters are three dimensional people who are fully vested in their lives and they don’t have issues with their sexuality. I depict gay people in meaningful relationships dealing with real issues and not the kind of gay men we love to see on television, such as the flamboyant hairdresser or the high-heel wearing, sassy, finger-popping gay man. Gay people are not a monolithic group in spite of what we often see. We come in all shapes, sizes and colors with varying levels of masculinity from thug boy to drama queen, there’s room for us all. Please don’t mistake my previous words as me having an issue with effeminate gay men; my above statement was to show that that is the only representation of “gayness” we see on television and often in books. I can tell you that gay people are so much more. I’m happy with anyone as long as they are being their authentic self. My novels depict gay people as who we are in our everyday realness as doctors, lawyers, businesspeople, retail workers, cashiers, struggling students, etc.

Urban Reviews:  Which of your characters in The Bad Seed is most/least like you, and in what ways?
Lee Hayes:  I hope neither (LOL)! Each character is so full of piss and vinegar that I hope I’m nothing like them (LOL). Blues and Brandon are the kind of men your mother warned you about. If you see them coming your way you should move to the other side of the street. Their beauty lures in their prey, but once they have you they will destroy you. So, if you see them coming, RUN!  LOL. I hope people don’t run from me!  (LOL).

Official Author Website: 
Order your copy of The Bad Seed today!

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