Hello all. This is Lynn, and I’m coming to you as a featured blogger for The Coastal Magic Convention. This PNR/UF con is happening in February in Daytona Beach. My featured author for this month is Vaughn R. Demont. I had the pleasure of reading his novel House of Stone a while ago and absolutely loved it. He’s an author not to be missed. For our spotlight post, Vaughn was kind enough to answer a few questions for us…
Vaughn: Honestly, I could say the ideas come from everywhere, or get spiritual and say they come to me while I’m meditating, but I swear it’s mostly from watching TV and asking myself how I’d rewrite the scene or rework the storyline, but that’s mostly for scene ideas. Ideas for stories tend to get easier the more work you’ve put into your setting, since there’s always an angle you can try, or a conflict you’ve unwittingly created that you need to address. House of Stone has an event at the end that had major repercussions on the setting that’s only beginning to show now in the Broken Mirrors series. Most story ideas, I believe, come from answering the questions about your setting and canon that you should be asking yourself. The harder the answer, the better the story will probably be.
Lynn: Which character/storyline was your most surprising to create?
Vaughn: Probably Chuck the Incubus, from “Let the River Run”, which is in my anthology. The concept started out so simple, and it was, really, but I probably had to do more research for him than any other character, including listening to so much Joni Mitchell and Carly Simon (hence the title) I’m surprised they don’t haunt my dreams, and looking of covers of TV Guide from the 1970s for one throwaway line of description.
Lynn: Which of your characters do you identify with the most?
Vaughn: James and Spence, honestly. They’re two different aspects of my personality, which yes, makes the prospect of writing romance between the two of them a little weird. 🙂 James is grounded, serious, a little whiny, but he’s been through a lot and is trying to put his life back together, while Spencer is upbeat, optimistic, but still has enough common sense to recgonize a tough situation. He’s been through just as much as James, a couple readers have argued he’s been through worse, but he’s always got hope that tomorrow will be better than today. It’s one of the things I admire about him, and try to aspire to.
Lynn: How do you balance your apparent sense of humor with traditionally serious themes in your writing?
Vaughn: “You gotta laugh, right?” That’s the line I bandied about in Coyote’s Creed, but every story needs a little humor, if only to break the tension. I think it comes from Joss Whedon being one of my primary influence, as that guy can really show emotional gravitas and still manage to inject humor into a serious scene without taking away from the dramatic weight of it. Mostly it’s about recognizing the line and knowing when and when not to cross it.
Lynn: In all of literature, what book would you have loved to have written?
Vaughn: Not so much a book as a scene in particular. I’m a huge fan of Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files, pretty much the flagship urban fantasy series, but there was a scene in Cold Days where the series protagonist, Harry Dresden, is asked his opinion of gay people and… let’s just say if there’s any scene I would even think of rewriting, it’d be that one. I can’t speak for the gay Dresdenites, obviously, but for me it could’ve gone better. I actually wrote an open letter to Mr. Butcher on my blog about it, and I still hate that I did it, because he’s probably my favorite writer.
Lynn: Who are your “go to” authors in the MM genre?/What would readers find surprising about you?
Vaughn: Honestly? They’d probably be shocked that I don’t really read M/M. Most of the books I read are UF to keep up with conventions, or I watch TV series with my boyfriend, who thankfully is into a lot of the same genres that I am, though I probably have to get a little more into comic books to even things out on my end (though I do love Arrow). There are some gay writers and readers of M/M, but I think it’s safe to say that the genre’s not really for gay men, but rather for the women who make up about 90-95% of the readers, writers, and reviewers of the genre. It’s why I’m writing Urban Fantasy, really, because I want a story where someone like me saves the world, and I think it’s awesome to be writing in a time where that’s encouraged.
Lynn: And finally, what are you looking forward to the most when you attend Coastal Magic in February?
Vaughn: Mostly? The book signing. If even one person comes up to me to get their book signed the trip will have been worth it, hands down. It still blows me away that I actually have fans (now called the Damned Coyotes), and I’d love to shake their hands and thank them all for their support.
Vaughn R. Demont. Writer, gamer, waffle-addict.
Coastal Magic is a super casual, urban fantasy and paranormal romance focused convention in Daytona Beach, FL. With panels designed to start interesting discussion, and meet & greets with fun themes, we’ve got something for every fan. Join us for reader, blogger, and author shenanigans, and lots of “supernatural” inspired activities. Saturday’s charity book sale and signing is open to convention attendees, and FREE to the public. Come take a bite out of the beach with us!! Feb 5-8, 2015
THIS CONTEST IS CLOSED
Coyote’s Creed (Broken Mirrors: Book One): Always have an ace up your sleeve.
If con games were taught in high school, Spencer Crain would be on the honor roll. As it is, he’ll be riding the edge of failure to graduation next month. Then Spence gets the news that his long-gone father is not only dead, but was a Coyote, one of three clans of tricksters in the City.
With a near-catatonic mother on his hands, Spence couldn’t care less about the Coyotes’ ongoing feud with the Phouka and the Kitsune—until it lands on his doorstep. Suddenly he’s thrown headfirst into a dangerous world he knows next-to-nothing about. His only guide is Rourke, dashing King of the Phouka, plus a growing pack of half-siblings, a god, and Fate herself.
As Spence embarks on a journey to learn the Coyote’s creed, the truth about his heritage, and how to handle his growing attraction to Rourke, he wonders when his life turned from TV sitcom to real-life danger zone. And what price must he pay to survive the next roll of the dice…
Lightning Rod (Broken Mirrors: Book Two): Always stand. Never fall.
If I could offer one piece of advice now, as I fall past the eighty-fourth floor of Victory Tower, with the sky above me the swirling eye of a crimson hurricane, the blade of a goddess stuck in my thigh, and a man I used to love preparing to end the world, it would be this: Magic is not the answer to your problems.
Sorcerers have always been feared in the City, their origins as unknown as the nature and extent of their power. When James Black, a young man fleeing an abusive lover, becomes a sorcerer, his old life is erased from existence, and his new life is indebted to powerful entities.
Escaping the man who abused him was supposed to be the end, but the very magic that freed him has put him on a collision course with the gods and the Sorcerer King himself.
And only one of them can survive.
Community Service (Broken Mirrors: Book Three): Never forget what you are.
The King is dead, long live the King. And, uh, could you float him a couple bucks?
Life as the only human sorcerer isn’t all it’s cracked up to be for James Black, the Lightning Rod. Between gremlins in the closet, paladins crashing through skylights and working spells in a storage locker, hunting a body-hopping spirit is a welcome distraction. If only he didn’t have to partner with a Coyote.
After being punted to the curb by his roommate (with benefits), things are looking dire for trickster Spencer Crain, until an old friend offers him a shot at a big score scamming the best of marks: a vampire. Thing is, he’ll have to work with his worst enemy to pull it off.
With lives in the balance, James is learning the hard way what being a sorcerer really means—and that he picked a hell of a time to quit smoking. Spencer is faced with the choice between his future and his friends. Yeah, like he’s never seen that movie before…
House of Stone (Standalone Novel): A modern knight, a noble quest, and a magical sword. What could go wrong?
Welcome to the City, where gods run nightclubs, goblins hire out as mercs, sorcerers work their magic, the Fae hold court over every neighborhood…and humanity is blissfully ignorant of it all.
For minor Fae noble Richard Stone, life is going well. He has a decent fiefdom (okay, it’s a slum), a budding acting career (okay, so it’s porn), and one of only five magical swords in the City. An arranged marriage is barely a blip on his worry meter—until his family blade loses its magic. The shame of it puts his noble standing in jeopardy.
To regain his status, Richard needs help. Fortunately, his new bride is a sidhe knight and his servant Simaron has, er, his back. Together they embark on a quest to find the demon who slew his father, investigate a conspiracy that goes to the highest echelons of Fae nobility, and discover a secret family legacy that could ruin his House.
All while keeping up appearances to a society that demands perfection. And they say a noble’s life is easy…