Kyle Taylor is my guest today to promote Exposition. I agreed to be a hostess for this tour because this book sounded fascinating. I had the opportunity to ask Kyle some candid interview questions about writing this book. The answers gave me a peek into a gifted and interesting life. Thank you for being my guest today Kyle Taylor!
What interested you in writing M/M romance in a historic setting?
I had just watched The Age of Innocence, a luscious film by Martin Scorsese for the umpteenth time and I was thinking to myself how much I wished there was a sumptuous, gay epic film to enjoy. Maurice certainly comes to mind, but I thought, what an excellent challenge to see if I could write a story in the vein of what I desired.
Tell us something behind the scenes from writing this story
The whole set up for Exposition started with a conversation I had with an elderly apprentice of Frank Lloyd Wright. I was writing a piece for an architectural magazine and we got to dishing outside the old archives annex at Taliesin West, Wright’s winter residence in Scottsdale. This man was a young apprentice in the late 1940’s to the end of Wright’s life in 1959. In a gentlemanly and discrete sort of way, he revealed this hidden gay world of Wright’s apprentices during that time. That stuck with me, these gay men and women who hid their sexuality – Wright was actually more accepting, but his last wife, Olgivanna was not. That conversation stayed with me.
A year or two later, I was writing another article about the World’s Columbian Exposition of 1893 in Chicago. All of the early ‘starchitects’ had their hand in its design. These top tier architects had some pretty interesting private lives! Stanford White enjoyed entertaining underage showgirls in his secret penthouse at the top of the old Madison Square Gardens. Louis Sullivan was rumored to have been a closeted homosexual. Frank Lloyd Wright wound up having a sensational affair with a client’s wife and running off to Europe with her. I thought, this is the perfect setting to explore the hidden lives of gay people in this bombastic Gilded Age in the midst of constructing the magnificent spectacle of a world’s fair.
Tell us about a scene in the book that moved you in some way and how.
There is a scene in the Exposition, where the hero, Benjamin Wyatt has tea in l’orangerie with the lovely debutante, Evelyn Van Buren. The Wyatts and Van Burens so desperately want Benjamin to marry Evelyn. Benjamin has already begun his affair with the dashing electrical engineer, Spencer Bowles. In the glass hot house, surrounded by lush greenery, Adam is presented to his Eve. Benjamin tries his damndest to fall in love with Evelyn. The shoe clearly doesn’t fit, but he fools himself to thinking it does. I’ve had lovers and career choices where I’ve made the same mistake for sure. It is painful to watch because Benjamin just fights internally forcing himself to make this thing work even when it isn’t who he really is.
Tell us something we wouldn’t guess about your characters, an interest, a hobby, some point from their life.
It is alluded to in the story off and on that Benjamin is an excellent horseman who loves to play polo. I once worked at a Chicago country club that had Daniel Burnham as a member. Daniel Burnham is Benjamin Wyatt’s boss. Anyway, the club had an old polo field that was turned into a golf driving range by the time I worked there as a kid. In my mind, I imagined when Benjamin was younger, he would spend his leisure hours on the back of a favorite horse playing polo at that club.
Here is a little trailer I made up for Exposition, just for the book tour. I hope you enjoy it! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9xvW01V732E
Thank you so much for this wonderful opportunity. I will be setting up a final giveaway for the tour for everyone – not only the $25. Amazon gift certificate, but I will also put my first novel, Billion Dollar Dreamer, on Amazon, free to download for the day for your readers to enjoy. Here is a trailer I made to show it off: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XuWyCUp7YBs
Find Kyle on Facebook at :https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002247108853&fref=ts