August 21, 2013

Character Interview: Zach Kelly from When Love Takes Over @JacobZFlores #RLFblog

When Love Takes Over 
Jacob Z. Flores, welcome to Romance Lives Forever. We're excited to interview your character, Zach Kelly from the book, When Love Takes Over.
Genre: Contemporary gay romance
Publisher: Dreamspinner
Cover artist: Michael Breyette
Length: 270 pages
Heat rating (based on movie ratings): R
Will broken hearts keep a porn star and author apart or will love take over?
Zach Kelly's life is a shambles. His boyfriend of three years dumped him, and his writing career is going nowhere. On a whim, he heads to Provincetown, Massachusetts, to nurse his broken heart and figure out his next step. He's expecting to find rest and relaxation on the sandy beaches of Cape Cod. Instead, Zach meets a hunky porn star during a chance encounter at a leather shop he mistakes as a place to buy a belt that is definitely not for whipping.
Van Pierce is smitten when shy and inexperienced Zach crashes through a shelf of fetish gear. Though Van's got an insatiable appetite for men on and off the set, his porn persona, Hart Throb, hides a broken heart. He's struggling to find the reality the porno set doesn't offer, and Zach is fighting to find the fantasy that will set his writing on fire. The odd goofball and the suave beefcake may either find love amid Provincetown's colorful pageantry where summer never seems to end--or more heartbreak than either can imagine.
What are your main characters' names, ages, and occupations?
Zach Kelly is 32. He is a college English professor as well as a struggling author. Van Pierce is 28, and he is a star for Nasty Boy Studios.

Interview with Zach Kelly

Tell us about yourself.
Oh, boy. It's not a pretty story but here goes. My boyfriend of three years, Ben, recently dumped me. He gave me no explanation other than it was over. He was done, and he wanted me out of our apartment. I wanted to fix things, like I always try to do, but there was no fixing us. According to Ben. He was so cold and cruel that I had to leave, or I was going to lose it. It was the last thing I needed. You see, I work as a college English professor, but it's not what I want to do. I really want to be a full time author, but my writing career, well, that's going nowhere fast. I didn't know what else to do, so I boarded a plane for Provincetown, Massachusetts. I needed to get away and find out why my relationship failed and why my writing sucks.
Tell us about Van.
Van? Wow! Where do I begin? He's quite possibly the most attractive man I've ever met. He's perfectly tanned and his smile, well, it's a killer. It's one of those smiles that hitches up to the left, the kind that reveals he's both an angel and a devil merged into one. When I first saw him, I wanted to take him in my arms, but I just couldn't. I'm far too shy for that. Plus, he's a porn star. What could he possibly see in someone like me? I'm too awkward and imperfect for someone like Van.
What do you think is your strongest point?
Hmm. My devotion perhaps. When I make a commitment to someone, I see it through to the end. That's why I wanted to work things out with Ben. We'd been together for three years. We owed it to each other to try and work things out, but Ben wanted no part of it. What could I do?
But that's how I've always lived me life. For good or bad. I don't give up. I keep trying until no reason to try exists. I think that's a strong quality. Although others might call it a weakness.
What would Van say is your strongest point?
That's a good question. I don't know. Maybe my shy and clumsy nature. It's what attracted Van to me in the first place. According to him, I was very different from all the other men he'd met in Provincetown. Most guys come to town dressed in the same short shorts and muscle shirts. Not me! I arrived wearing baggy ass camouflaged shorts and an ill fitting blue and white T-shirt. I didn't think I looked that bad, but everyone else sure did. Well, except Van. He liked my mismatched look. He also found it endearing when I crashed through a rack of fetish gear and stumbled my way into his life. Who knew being such a klutz would get the attention of someone like Van?
What would Van say is your biggest weakness?
That's an easy one because we've talked about it a lot. He doesn't like that I've lived for other people for most of my life. It started with my father. He had this image of perfection that I felt I had to meet, and when I didn't meet his expectations, I felt like a failure. When I met Ben, I did the same thing. I did what he wanted and never really questioned it. I told you I was a hot mess, didn't I? But I'm working on it. Van's been helping me with that and so have my new friends Gary, Quinn, and Tara. They've been the best medicine for me.
What was it like where you grew up?
I grew up in a small town called Victoria, Texas. There, everyone knows your business, and being the son of a prominent doctor in town only made me more visible. It was hard living in my dad's shadow, especially once his indiscretions came to light. I don't like to talk about them though. It was pretty tough on me. Well, on my entire family really. I'm still trying to deal with everything, so needless to say, my childhood wasn't the best.
What do you wish was different about your life?
I wish I had more confidence in myself. I used to as a child. I challenged everything—my father, life, school, the world, but that only seemed to get me in trouble. I learned that it was just easier to go with the flow. But that hasn't worked out so well for me, has it? But I'm working on it. That's part of the reason I came to Provincetown. To find myself and the person I once was.
If you were given your fondest wish, what would it be?
To quit my day job and work full time as an author. It's really what I love to do. But I'm not quite there yet. And I need to figure out why. Reviews for the books I've published myself haven't exactly been stellar. They say my characters are two dimensional and that my plots are contrived and over-the-top. Maybe it's because I haven't really lived my life yet, which makes it difficult to create a fictional world. You have to live and have a life to be able to write believable stories. At least that's what I believe.
Describe a place of perfect refuge.
Right now, it's Provincetown. When I first got here, I was stressed and unsure. But now, well, let's just say being here has been good for me. The people here are great, and they are willing to take in a stranger and treat him like family. It's like my troubles in Texas didn't follow me to the Cape. I think that makes P-town a perfect refuge for most anyone.
As a child, who was your best friend? Tell us about him/her.
My best friend was Tommy Martinez. We've been friends since the second grade. We don't talk as much as we used to. Which is sad. But when I was a kid, we were inseparable. It was also kind of tough being his best friend. Tommy wasn't your average kid. He always had his shit together. Like he was an adult or something. Sometimes, I felt as if my dad preferred him to me because Tommy knew what he wanted out of his life and just went for it. Things were never that easy for me.
What do you wish I had asked you? Please ask and answer it now.
How about this: where do I see things going with Van? Truthfully, I don't know. I like him. A lot. Probably more than I should. But he lives in Provincetown, and I live in Texas. Plus, he's a porn star. What kind of future could the two of us possibly have?

About Jacob Z. Flores

Jacob lives a double life. During the day, he is a respected college English professor and mid-level administrator. At night and during his summer vacation, he loosens the tie and tosses aside the trendy sports coat to write man on man fiction, where the hard ass assessor of freshmen level composition turns his attention to the firm posteriors and other rigid appendages of the characters in his fictional world.
Summers in Provincetown, Massachusetts, provide Jacob with inspiration for his fiction. The abundance of barely clothed man flesh and daily debauchery stimulates his personal muse. When he isn't stroking the keyboard, Jacob spends time with his husband, Bruce, their three children, and two dogs, who represent a bright blue blip in an otherwise predominantly red swath in south Texas.


  1. What a picture painted for the dressing room ans store. Very funny! Great interview as well.
    debby236 at gmail dot com

    1. Thanks, Debby! And thanks for stopping by. :)

  2. I used to live in MA as a child and occasionally went to the Cape, but I missed out on P-town. Love the book cover!

    1. Susan, I love MA. OBVIOUSLY! And you should visit the Cape. It's so beautiful, and the people there are wonderful. It can get a bit crazy, but it's a fun crazy. Not crazy crazy. :)

    2. I previously posted a comment, but I think the Internet ate it. So I am reposting. Sorry if this publishes twice:

      I love MA. Obviously. And you should totally visit the Cape, Susan. It's beautiful and the people there are wonderful. It can get crazy, but it's a fun type of crazy. Not crazy crazy. :)

  3. Thank you for the interview with Zach. It was really interesting to see his perspective on things.
    Freakgrly at aol dot com

    1. Thank you for stopping by, Megan. I had fun interviewing, Zach. He's a bit of a mess, but who isn't sometimes? :D

  4. Aw, I just want to give Zach a hug--don't sell yourself short!


    1. He won't, Vita. He's just got some growing to do, and boy, does he grow! LOL!

  5. I am looking forward to reading this book. I love when there is a level of humor incorporated in the story.

    1. Thanks, Lisa. Lots of the events I include are based on real events. Some of them are just too darn funny to believe! :D


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