April 3, 2010

Sue's Interview with LeeCullen about 'Lords Of the Gangland'


OK let me start off by saying, simply this: I do not know if I can be funny with this post. I will do my darndest to lighten things up, because this particular story covers some pretty serious shit



YES, There is a rape in this story. HOWEVER, the rape is NOT the biggest part of the story. It is a small part of the story, AND it is vital to the plot of the story, and FITS with the characters their motivations and all that jazz...

SO WHY?? SUE,WHY would uber PC Sue recommend a fic in which Edward rapes Bella??

It is not for the pervy reason.

It is because this story is that damn good!!!

THIS Edward is an Edward you can hate and you do not feel like shit about it (So far). This Edward reminds me of the bad guy in Charmed. You remember he was the cute one!! Played the Devil, or something evil FUCKHAWT but still evil yeah.....(picturing fuckhawt evil guy right now give me a moment...ahhhh)

I personally feel that this particular fic has gotten a really bad wrap and I cannot let that happen!!!

NOPE, not on my watch!!! This is a good fic that can be enjoyed outside of the one small teeny tiny non PC portion of it...


HELL NO!! Were you not paying attention to the Theme of Week??

OK, let me try to stop bullshitting, and maybe actually explain myself.

Things I like about this fic

1) Lee is upfront about there being rape in this story. That shit does not just sneak up on you. It is right there, top of the page you read this:
Warning: Rape is involved in one of the later chapters. It is not physically violent; it is more about one person’s absolute control over the other. But it is still rape so if this topic offends you, please stay away.

Myself, I find that damn awesome it warns you up front, no bullshit.

2) When she depicts this rape it is from the victims (Bella) POV. YUP inside Bella's noggin. Now shocking as this may sound, I have read more than FF (IKR!!)...This depiction is well thought out, and goes with everything (I've read) that victims feel during a rape. Bella separates herself mentally from the actions. She FEELS guilty about her bodies responses. She rationalizes, AND SHE HATES HIM...YOU READ THAT RIGHT!!! Bella does NOT fall for him !! (yet)

(brave shit there LEE, BB thanks for that!)

3) This story is a mystery right from the first chapter. Seriously, you have no IDEA (at least I didn't) WHY she is being kidnapped. WHY she is being taken. WHO IS SHE that she is so important??

SO SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT ( I totes know this is too late, but tough shit!! It is my schtick and I am NOT gonna let THIS one get swiped!)

Bella, a teacher, living alone gets kidnapped by a mob guy (you all do know that I dig the Mob right cause GoodFellas is like my guilty pleasure movie. I got this thing for Ray Liotta and ....OK OK I will get back on topic) Edward, is the Mob guy who kidnaps her along with his gang his thugs.

The thugs beat her, because she put up a fight. So, she is unconscious when she is taken.
She wakes up in a room she does not know.... after some healing time (it is unknown at first how long that takes).

She finds out she is being held against her will, and she has a choice. Be treated as a guest, or a captive..AS a guest, she has to eat dinner with Edward every evening. She basically has the run of the house (with the exception of a few rooms) she cannot have contact with the outside world...

WHY is she being held captive? WHY was she taken?

Her estranged father is also a gangster boss guy, enemy of Edward

Confused yet??



Sorry, could not resist.

SO LET's allow Lee to tell me more and answer my questions !!

Where did you get the idea for this story?

Hmmm, it’s a combination of many things:

- My perverted mind that craves a very bad and hurt and cryptic and damaged Edward.

- My obsession with The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand. Howard Roark, the main character, forces himself on Dominique Francon, a woman who by no means is either weak or dumb; and the relationship develops into a very deep and passionate affair that goes beyond just that. Anyway, I always wondered if it were possible to begin a relationship in such a manner and have it grow from there. I seriously doubted I could pull it of, maybe I still do…

- Now, I originally wrote a draft of the story with a very different actor in mind and then let it dust in my laptop files. The GQ pictures of Robert Pattinson made me dug it up and rewrite it. BUT, I never intended to use RP as the character, he is too goofy and sweet and nervous, he could never have the cool demeanor needed in any respectable gangster. I have to agree with you there I do not see Rob as this bad gangster dude I see someone else entirely .... (Sue thinking now about bad dude from Charmed...whatshisname??..who cares...)

What was your inspiration?

I guess I’ve sort of answered in the previous question, but whenever I need further inspiration? I go to ROBsessed and drool for a while, that always gets the creative *ahem* juices flowing. AHHHH yes looking at the Robporn definitely gets the .."creative" juices flowing

Is there anything you would want readers to know specifically?

The many references from Federico Garcia Lorca’s poetry, it’s a key factor for everything, I think. How Bella feels for Edward, both the longing and the pain and the unknown, her escape, her love for poetry and the fact that they share a love for his poetry in general. That book of poetry is very meaningful.

Why should readers read your story?
Now, that I really can’t answer. I wrote if for myself, and I posted it because I wanted to make sure I was not an absolute freak who needed to check herself into the cuckoo’s house. (If you cuckoo then so is Sue I do not know if you want to take that as a glowing reference or not...) Besides, what’s the point in keeping at writing if no one will ever read it? But I never expected the response I’ve gotten, it is so much more than I ever would have imagined or wished.

BTW just so you know I am not fond of your Edward right now I hope he does something to redeem himself!! I am curious about his motives for things but I cant really ask about that much.

I know this is not a question, but I really wanted to comment on this. Not liking Edward is part of the point of the story. I know it doesn’t make much sense, and that’s why I never considered him as the main character or writing from his point of view. He IS a pretty scary guy, and so it would be close to impossible to relate to him the way we can somehow relate to Bella.

He kidnaps Bella and almost has her killed in the process, he then holds her in his house against her will, rapes her and was apparently planning on killing her all along… he is no prince in shining armor. I guess that’s another exercise in writing I wanted to take on: how far can I go with a character without completely loosing my audience or his soul? Does he redeem himself? I don’t know, I guess you’ll have to tell me that in a couple of chapters. But he is not 100% bad, that much I can tell you, and I do hope that just like Bella, the reader can find it in themselves to eventually forgive him. He’s had it tough, I think that much is evident by chapter 11, agree?I do agree that he has at least earned some benefit of the doubt after chapter 11 his motives are more clear now and he does not look PURE evil it is now easier to ..not necessarily LIKE him but understand him

(thanks for doing this really!)

Seriously? It's me who should thank you! As to why you'd like to interview me is beyond me ;)

Lee hon Seriously WHY Rape? I know you have a reason and did not throw that in there just for the sake of having it be there can you tell us WHY this is integral to your plot or do we have to wait for that info to be revealed?

All right, I'll answer as best as I can. It's integral to the plot because otherwise, seriously, it would have been too easy for Bella to fall in love with Edward. The brutal way in which she was captured and the rape makes it oh-so-very-hard. Also, there are a couple of other semi-reasons:

1. I wanted a dangerous Edward, a REALLY dangerous Edward, someone who is very much walking the dark side.

2. I like redemption, I do. I loved the fact that Bella, the real character from the books, was always able to look past the fact that these creatures were vampires and had each done their fair deal of horrible things, and STILL love them.

3. Again, The Fountainhead... yep, he forced himself on Dominique, how is it possible that it is still kinda hot? I can see why she would pursue him, perverted as I may be, I do.

Now, in case you are wondering, I did NOT do it just for the sake of being controversial. Had I wanted to just piss people off, I would not have given as many warnings as I did. I get so many reviews saying "well that wasn't so bad, I expected much worse from your avalanche of warnings", and I’m glad I seem to be scaring off the people I may offend. Really, that is not my intention.

I BTW loved the way you treated it in here as the violent atrocious act that it is

It's important that the reader does not forget how terrible Edward can be, and it is also important to remember that rape is rape is rape. This IS fantasy, I seriously doubt any sane relationship could develop from a situation like this. Also, this is why I needed the characters to not be 'normal', or at least not have a 'normal' upbringing. It's the kind of situation one might actually see happening among creatures of the under-world.

Was it Edwards Motive to fall for her and get her to fall for him or was that a screw up?

The screw up was the fact that he's always been in love with her... I think. That's where his plan went astray. Now, did he want for her to fall in love with him? Maybe not as far as love, but crave him, grow obsessed with him.

WILL we see EPOV soon?

EVERYONE begs for an EPOV, it is only a handful of readers that beg me NOT to do it. I never for a second considered writing this from his pov. Can you imagine his thoughts before he rapes her? While? After might actually be enlightening, but everything else would just make everyone hate him, and there is no way they would ever forgive him, I think. His mind is too twisted with pain, the whole thing from his pov would just be hell. Now, every day I grow more fond of the idea of an epilogue from his pov. A short one, but still.

Lastly, I don't even think I have the talent to write him well! It would take a certain amount of skill to have such a horrible main character and have the reader still relate and sympathize with him. I couldn't do it.

Do you believe in HEA?

If you want a one word answer, the answer is: no. Now, don't throw anything sharp at me just yet. Let me explain. I don't believe in HEA in the sense that I don't believe anything could ever, or should ever, be perfect. I do believe in ying and yang, and so for one person to experience happiness, they have to experience pain. Yes, sorry, I do believe that. Will my characters live happily ever after, fuck no! But they will find great joy in many things...so no puppies kittens and Rainbows WOOOOHOOO thanks!

Does Bella really love him or is this a Stockholm Syndrome thing I mean he had her for like 4 months!

Have you ever had a dog? I know, I'm not trying to insult either dogs or humans, but how long did it take you to grow attached to it? A day? A week? Given the opportunity, you can grow attached to anyone, you don’t need Stockholm Syndrome for that. And in very canon fashion to the Edward / Bella dynamic, they are meant for each other, lock them up in the same house for a certain period of time, and they'll end up looking at each other with doe eyes.

Now, the rational part of the brain is more difficult to convince, Bella needs to fight these feelings for a while, she owes it to herself, her sanity and her pride. And so does Edward, how can he love someone that came from the person he hates the most?

If you see throughout the story, these two have a great deal in common: they love reading and poetry, they love music, horse back riding, good food, culture… wow, they are kind of snobs, aren’t they? Told you- meant for each other. Had they met under ‘normal’ circumstances, they would have hit it off right away. That perhaps is what keeps this from being a solely SS relationship.

OH and A Q from another long time fan Molls

Will he attack her (BTW this was consensual sex) at the table again THAT shit was HAWT!!

LOL! You have NO idea how much I want these two to have sex again. That is one thing they are awesome at! ;) Sex will come (pun intended), but Edward needs to mend first...


NOW Lee does not think she is funny and while I KNOW she can be. We are again talking about some seriously unfunny stuff....

HOWEVER, LEE is an extremely intelligent woman who writes her well thought out story with grace. SO IF you, like me, can overlook a violent act which is NOT meant in any way to be anything about love cause it is not (and remember like drugs and slavery IT HAPPENS IRL no laws seem able to stop it!).

I loved interviewing Lee she is awesome funny fun to chat with I feel like I made me a new friend!! And I need all the hoors I can get!!

SO GIVE IT A CHANCE!!! Love it, hate it, whatever, drop me or Lee a line!! We would LOVE to hear from you. ALSO remember if you hate it be CONSTRUCTIVE not hateful authors get really persnickety when people start pouring on the haterade SO don't.



Kelly said...

Can you tell me if this fic is finished? It doesnt say complete. I really want to read if based on yuor review but am scared of investing in something that will never finish.

Sue said...

Hi Kelly ,
it has been a LONG time since I have read this story I know it was updating a bit here and there over the years as far as I know it is not complete
I was reading this fic when it first started posting and that was in spring 2009

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