October 6, 2009

Preternatural Fiction.

I started writing at a very young age and I’ve always been intrigued by the paranormal. I remember when I was five years old and the neighbors across the street moved out of their house. I was convinced that when people moved out of their houses they left a ghost behind (don’t ask me why).

What did I do?

I sneaked over to the house to investigate, peeking through windows, trying to look under the door. Trust me, I’m fully aware of how strange that sounds, but I was seriously convinced that I was going to see my first ghost. I’m pretty sure I didn’t see a ghost. No, what I saw was most likely a shadow. The shadow was enough. My entire tough, “I’m going to see my first ghost,” attitude fell away and I was suddenly a child again, a child that freaked herself the Hel out and ran home to mummy.

One thing I retained into my adulthood has been my imagination. Fortunately, I’ve learned not to turn it against myself. There’s a fine line between reality and fiction, but let’s face it - fiction is just so damn fun. It’s especially fun when you’ve got a gun carrying female protagonist that happens to be, not only a preternatural private investigator and a practicing witch, but a lycanthrope trying to keep her “disease” under wraps.

In Kass’s world, life is just a little different.

Ever looked at your colleague and thought that she/he looked like a bacon cheeseburger? Ever tried to keep that hungry look out of your eyes? Well, Kassandra has. It’s fun being in a character’s head when she’s kneeling beside a body thinking, “Dear Gods, please don’t let my stomach growl,” while surrounded by a bunch of blue uniforms.

I write what interests me. I write what I’m passionate about and what I’d like to read. I’ve always adored stories with a strong female protagonist that knows how to hold her own and how to handle a weapon.

The idea for Kassandra’s story came to me years ago. I wasn’t ready to write the book then and her image wasn’t clear in my mind. A year or two later, when she finally came to me and I could see her clearly – I got sucked into her world.

I’ve had people ask me, “Why do you write lesbian fiction when you could make it onto the New York Times Bestseller list by writing hetero-fiction?”

In the words of Kate Clinton, “Let’s get one thing straight . . . I’m not.”

I think that if you’re a writer and you’re writing something that you’re not passionate about – you’re wasting words. You should write what you’re passionate about, what you feel strongly about. If you’re not passionate about what you’re writing, how can you expect your readers to be? If you can’t feel it, how are your readers going to? Chances are they won’t.

Another suggestion I’ve received was, “Why not just leave sexuality out in general?”

To which, all I have to say is this:

Where’s the fun in that? If, by chance, somewhere down the road I’m inspired to write a story with zero element of sexuality (which is highly unlikely), then I’ll do it. As it is, that’s just not the type of writer I am.

Why should someone stifle who they are for someone else’s sense of satisfaction? What good does it do any of us to pretend to be something or someone we’re not? It doesn’t. It does so much more harm than good in most cases. It especially causes harm to the self.

Yes, in life there are times when it is wise to remain silent and times when it is wise to speak out and stand up for yourself and who you are. I am not saying stand up and fight fire with fire – I’m a firm believer that fighting fire with fire is one sure way to burn down a house.

What I am saying is this – don’t be afraid to be who you are, don’t be afraid to follow your dreams, and never give another person the power to trample over them.

Follow your inspiration and let the muse be your guide.

Brightest Blessings,

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