Yep, I’m Still Happy About Some Things
First and most importantly, Happy Five Year Blogiversary to Lisa and the TNA crew! Thank you for all you’ve done and continue to do, for the conversations you encourage and the space you’ve built.
A lot can happen in five years. A lot has happened in five years, and this past year has been Alice in Wonderland bizarre on so many levels. Political and social upheaval, changes in the industry, the loss of far too many iconic creative people—I was going to blog on one or several of these things. But there have been too many posts like that and none of those felt right for a celebration.
Instead, thought I’d talk about some of the things I’ve been happy to see this past year:
- Pleased as punch to see more and more readers and writers of speculative fiction. (I’m pleased that more people understand what speculative fiction is.) Urban fantasy. High Fantasy. Space opera. Xenological SF. Historical Paranormal. Near-future SF. Steampunk. Cyberpunk. Slipstream. Alternative Universe. And on and on.
- Glad to see more readers and writers who are actual geeks and nerds instead of just seeing them (us) used as a romantic trope. I’ve met more people this year with wonderfully specifics areas of expertise than ever before.
- Deliriously happy to see more diversity in queer fiction and romance. It’s slow growth, granted, but it’s no longer impossible to find main characters and supporting characters across the LGBTQIA spectrum, characters who are POC, characters from diverse religious backgrounds and even aliens who aren’t perfect copies of humanity who just happen to be a different color.
- Happy to see successful new startup presses after all the recent shutdowns. The industry needs a healthy collection of publishers in order to thrive.
- Encouraged to see so many authors taking charge of their own destinies, picking up the marketing reins, making schedules and plans, understanding author persona in this not always brave new world.
- Grateful to see support and people listening to marginalized groups. No, it’s not universal and we’re always going to have bouts of drama and strife, but it’s not just “in our genre.” Every creative genre has conflict and always will. But there are a lot of writers out there willing to listen, to learn, to take steps to write fully-realized characters outside their own experiences.
- So freaking pleased to see all the brave genre mashing out there, the leaps of faith, and the realization that not all queer genre fiction needs to be romance. Romance can be a genre or it can be part of a story arc. (You got romance in my science fiction! No, you got science fiction in my romance! The more Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup stories, the better.)
We need our stories and our storytellers now more than ever. Our continued growth, our continued refusal to be shoved back into the closet, our continued need to tell our stories all will help inspire those around us, will help foster understanding where there’s even a half-open ear, and will help get us through. I’m grateful for the bloggers, the reviewers, the readers, and for everyone brave enough to stand up and tell a story.
Published since 2006, Angel’s cynical heart cloaks a desperate romantic. You’ll find drama and humor given equal weight in her writing and don’t expect sad endings. Life is sad enough.
She currently lives in Delaware in a drinking town with a college problem and writes Science Fiction and Fantasy centered around queer heroes.
For more info, please see Angel’s Website.
Willem’s lost his job and his boyfriend, and now possibly his mind when his cat calls him a nitwit.
Willem’s father never approved of his artistic talents, his choices in life, or the fact that he’s gay. When the only thing Horst leaves to Willem is the family cat, he thinks it’s his father’s last insult from the grave. That is, until the cat starts talking to him.
Though Willem’s lost his boyfriend, his home, and his job, Kasha, who claims to be a magic cat, reassures him that all will be well. All he needs is Willem’s trust and a good pair of boots. But giving boots to a talking cat has unexpected consequences when odd events ambush Willem at every turn, such as the appearance of a handsome stranger in his arms at night. While he begins to suspect Kasha’s plans might be dangerous for all involved, how can he distrust such a charming kitty in cowboy boots?
Reader Advisory: This book contains a scene of flexible autoerotica.
Publisher’s Note: This book has previously been released elsewhere. It has been revised and re-edited for re-release with Pride Publishing.
A huge bear at the door, a handsome, naked stranger in the snow, magic fish, enchanted beards—and Rowan thought his life was odd before.
Content with the quiet isolation of their lake house, Snowden and Rowan Hadley survive on summer jobs and winter hunting, unable to move on since their parents died. Their peace is shattered by a strange, human-acclimated bear who insists on following Rowan like a giant hunting dog and again by the discovery of a naked, surly stranger in the snow.
Both bear and man lead the Hadley brothers into a strange, surreal world where sorcery and RPG software intertwine. Curses and magical traps lie in wait around every turn. Rowan and Snowden will need to adjust their view of how the world works, and quickly, if they want to live through rescuing their enchanted princes.
Publisher’s Note: This book has been previously released elsewhere. It has been revised and re-edited for re-release with Pride Publishing.