As many of you know, I went looking for character models for both Lem and Anderson before I started to write what turned out to be my best-selling gay romance novel, Cold. I thought I needed these to help me build the characters correctly and strengthen their draw for potential readers in a prison setting. Of course, in doing this, I never told the models I used what I was doing or asked for any of their input.
Recently I reached out to the character model for Anderson and surprised him with the news, not knowing that he had previously read one of my books. He loved the idea and was gracious enough to allow me an interview. I know I have teased fans relentlessly about his identity. (The only hint I gave was that he was one of the Cocky Boys.) But only one person got his name right. So let me introduce you to the beautiful Antonio Manero.
Below are a few questions from readers which were posed about his thoughts on the book, and a few more questions which came up after it was suggested that he play the role of Anderson in a movie version. (We asked that he put his psyche (since he would be playing the role of Anderson) into his answers and reply with what he thought Anderson would say to the questions.)
Questions from readers of Cold:
How did you feel when Brandon revealed that he had used you as a character model for Anderson? Did you find any similarities?
Having read, The Value of Rain (suggested by fellow writer Lichen Craig) I was astounded with his work. To be a character model for someone like Brandon who has such a way with words, I felt honored.
Early on in Cold when Brandon describes the physical attributes of Anderson, I think I read that paragraph a hundred times. Having never met Brandon, I couldn’t believe how spot on he was with my physical features, personality traits, and to some degree even my family….but that’s another story….
You saw the picture Brandon used as a character model for Lem. Readers would like to know what you thought and if you fantasized about being with Lem as much as they did? (Details please!)
Haha….let’s just say that picture of Lem’s inspiration and I became very familiar with each other 😉
The gym I go to has A TON of Lem types, so I get horned up real easily when I work out. Recently, I have been working 24/7 which means I hadn’t had sex in a while and I was incredibly horny. One night in the gym showers while no one was around, I actually re-enacted the masturbation scene Anderson does in the shower. While thinking of an older, brawny, solid muscle man like Lem, I just went to town! It was one of the best orgasms I have had in a while!
Brandon said you wanted to play the role of Anderson in a movie version of Cold, is that true? And why?
That is true! I want to be Anderson because I feel I have such a strong connection to his character. Also, it’s probably just me being selfish but…I want to meet whoever is cast as Lem…
Questions assuming Antonio played the role of Anderson in the film version of Cold:
What do you think hurt the most – the betrayal of Anderson by his former lover, Jacob; or the fact that the relationship was over because of the legal battles? Do you question if Jacob loved Anderson?
I would definitely have to say the betrayal of Anderson’s former lover is what hurt the most. Nothing hurts more than being stabbed behind the back by someone you think loves you.
Before prison, before Jacob… I was never the type that approached men. It wasn’t because I felt like I needed to be desired/ lusted after… I just was horrible at deciphering signals so I never knew who was/ wasn’t interested. I think that is why I fell so hard for Jacob, because he approached me then swept me off my feet…
It’s hard for me to question whether Jacob did love Anderson or not, but to me it seems like Jacob loved the idea of Anderson, more than Anderson himself. Jacob seems to be more invested in his fantasy relationship rather than truly investing himself in Anderson (faults included). But that’s just me…
Can you tell us more what you (as Anderson) were thinking when you finally gave yourself to Lem in the shower? I know you were terrified but wanted him. What finally gave you the guts to approach him…curiosity or something to prove for yourself?
I wish I could write something more prolific and inspiring but the fact of the matter is my temporary bravery came out of pent up lust/ desire for sex. After not being interrupted masturbating in the shower… every time after when I stepped into the shower, my craving for something physical expanded. Yes, I was terrified of Lem and the solid mass that towered over me. Physical touch was something I was desperately craving and in a momentary lapse of judgment, I took the plunge and approached Lem.
What next…you’re out (of prison)…so what’s next for you?
I ask to be driven to a bookstore. Not only do I need to pick up a book on how to take care of this small tree, but I also plan on buying some magazines, books, anything about wildlife for Lem. (Maybe something about the Porcupine Mountains?) I need Lem to know that there is something waiting for him outside those prison walls…besides my pert little butt… I know he doesn’t want me to come back and see him, but if I can’t I will drag my sister to bring them to Lem for me. Either way, I am making sure he has something new to read/ look at.
Hmmm…I might also raid my old bedroom closet for that Polaroid camera I had…take a couple snapshots and insert them into the pages of a book… God, Lem still makes me feel like this even when he isn’t physically near me…
Do you think of Lem all the time?
B: So there you have it, my real-life inspiration for Anderson. Isn’t he gorgeous? And he’s ready to step into the role of Anderson when we hit the theaters with Cold (if that ever happened). Make sure you stop by Antonio’s twitter and wish him a Happy Birthday. It is coming up on Wed.