I eat, drink, and breathe speculative fiction and historical fiction (LGBT and mainstream). When I open a book or watch a movie, I want my disbelief suspended in the best way possible. I want to revel in the writer’s imagination and enjoy his/her vision of how the impossible can be possible – and real. Give me fantasy, folktales, sci-fi, superheroes, gothic fiction, horror, and every gray shade within. Whether intentional or not, speculative fiction is more than escapist reading; it can work as a mirror image of the modern world, exploring contemporary values, issues, etc., while being detached from it. I’ve always likened speculative fiction to the modern world in cosplay costume.
Historical fiction tends to be treated like the red-headed stepchild, and I think that genre (and especially its writers – have you any idea how difficult it is to write a historical novel with limited information available about day-to-day things from different time periods?) deserve more attention and respect than what they get now. The LGBT community doesn’t exist in a 21st century vacuum. Their story goes well before Stonewall, Oscar Wilde, and Lord Byron. Historical fiction offers us some background context on LGBT struggles: where they are now and where they’d been. Romance allows them their happily-ever-after, but the difficulties they faced were real and don’t deserve to be erased, ignored, or dismissed.
That said, I look forward to giving Lisa a hand in bringing books from these genres (and their myriad sub-genres) to the front. The possibilities these books offer us are endless.