Time for Spotlight Saturday again! Joining us today is Nat Kennedy. She writes gay fantasy. Let’s find out more…
You write gay fantasy. What draws you to that genre? What’s your favorite part about writing in that genre?
I really discovered my love for reading when I found the fantasy genre. As a kid, I read animal books, and some of the Beverly Cleary, and that’s about it. Then I discovered Xanth, a magical place where everyone has a magic talent. The idea of this world with magic flipped my eager little reading lid wide open. I devoured all the fantasy that I could, even if it wasn’t 100% up to my tastes, because at the time I didn’t really have many options.
I was never much of a romance reader. I still liked my external/active plot. I wasn’t interested in a story that was solely about two people falling in love. Of the few romances I had read, the books were focused on women being saved and ‘oh, that brute of a man’. Maybe I just hadn’t found the good stuff, but what I’d found wasn’t for me.
About fifteen years ago I read some romantic gay fantasy. The stories weren’t just about the relationship, about the two characters finding love. There was plot. Guys were loving each other and doing things, not pining, not waiting, but being active. So, I found this subgenre and decided this was where I belonged. I wrote little stories for friends. Then longer novels. Finally, I decided to take the plunge. Last year I self-published two novellas for a greater urban fantasy series – the Wielder World.
My favorite parts? Plotting, worldbuilding, slow burn romance. Because there are other outside forces at work, it isn’t just about the relationship. The characters react to the fantasy plot slapping them about, forcing them to choose and act and then, along the way, they fall in love.
You have two books out in the Wielder World series, Edge of Desperation and Center of Deception. How many books do you plan on in this series? When can we expect the next one out?
Wielder World is a planned four book series, though honestly, if I get to that point and I feel there is more story, I will continue. The two novellas are openers, introductions to my three main characters: Reggie, August and Kyle. They are pre-romance, a way to explore the characters, define the world, and let you know what’s at stake. Following those is a short story treat, called Places Between, which focuses on a fourth character, Bethany, an agent for the government. After these shorter works, there are two novels. The next book, Afflicted to the Core, is in the editing phase. In this novel, the romance and heat ratchet up. The men fall for each other as they struggle against the twisted government, the shadow agency, and the Wielder cults. They’re knee deep in trouble, and along the way, they find love.
Expect Afflicted to the Core out this year, early fall.