I'm on a fantasy writing kick (proof being that my next three releases are all magic and fantasy and I'm working on a fantasy romance novel right now) which isn't the norm for my. I love my spaceships and aliens, oh, and blowing stuff up. Love that last one. So, the lack of SFR writing in my life has got me wondering...why?
What is fantasy romance giving me that science fiction romance isn't right now?
I still get to play with complicated worlds, smart heroines and brooding heroes--though I'm swapping the hand cannon for swords and crackling blasts of magic.
I think it has to do with the nature of the world building and what that drives the plot and the characters to become. Fantasy pushes me into creating stories that involve power struggles--court intrigue--as I can restrict myself to a city and force people to expose old truths when something first explodes within their world, breaking apart the old, accepted order.
Put people in a confined space and...shake. I could do that on a spacecraft--a tin can in vacuum--but that situation is more immediately life threatening and with no clear way for me to see romance and an HEA. And I have to have my HEA. It's addictive. *twitch*
DARK DEALINGS started out as a complicated love life story, but its fantasy setting almost necessitated my pushing deeper until it also became awash with political manoeuvrings as well as my first murder mystery. That surprised me! This novel isn't out for a while --26 November 2012-- but since I just got my cover finalised *squee* I thought I'd share a peek...
There are monsters in the city. And one of them is her…
Ava Kalle's empty soul devours magic. And her hunger is deadly. She's sharp, quick and can live in shadow, making her work as a spy for the Mages a natural choice. She lives on the fringes of society and likes it that way.
When the man she loves takes another woman for his mate, the darkness in her heart unravels and she'll do anything to get him back. She makes a dangerous deal with a fire elemental, Heyerdar, who has a vested interest in agreeing: together they'll use forbidden magic, harnessing their sexual energy to drive the couple apart.
But soon their pact pushes them both into a dark sexual obsession. One that Ava may not be able to control…
And sneaky excerpt *shhh*:
Heyerdar gave a low, rumbling laugh and released his grip on her. The pressure of the stone at her back eased, and she could pull away. She resisted the need to rub her arms, knowing that his hard hands had left bruises.
“I want him alive and you want her.”
His gaze was on her again, fury and pain a wild mix before his eyes became flat gold. And there’d been something else she couldn’t name. What he was confused her. He sat in his leather padded chair set before the cold hearth and waved her to the opposite chair. He curled his fingers, a casual flick, and a spark of fire started in the grate.
That had taken no effort. It was little wonder he was the emperor’s Left Hand. In the growing firelight, there was a wildness to him, an animal strength. That would be it. Fallon would crave the power and not the beast that gave it to him. She wanted force and beauty. Perfection. The perfection that was Reist.
“I want to break them up. Reist is mine. He is and always will be.”
“You fucked him?”
Ava kept the blush from her cheeks. It was none of his business what she’d done—or hadn’t done—with Reist. “I’m a thief. I can twist any gift, any spell to my will with enough strength.” She focused on him. “You have a vested interest in giving me that strength.”
“Why?” He sat back and watched her, his eyes hooded. She knew she was playing with a predator, but she had no choice, not if she wanted to get her man.
“I can cast illusions.”
His brow furrowed. “Illusions are illegal.”
“Going to tell on me?”
He grunted. “Carry on.”
“I can spin a veil, push it between Reist and…her.” It was still hard to speak her name. And she doubted Heyerdar would appreciate the names she wanted to call her. “Break them apart.”
“You want a demonstration of what I can do?” A sharp smile lifted her mouth. “Of what we can do together?”
“I know what I taste like to a thief.” He tugged at his linen collar and exposed his neck, the hard line of muscle and brown skin. “You still want to do that?”
Reist, Eleta, the images in the treatise swirled through her thoughts. It was something she hadn’t thought through, but if she didn’t grab her chance then even with the thief ruling her she would lose her nerve. He was her only chance to break Reist from Fallon. She could weave illusions so Reist would think of her more as she wanted him to, more than as a thief of magic, the lowest of the low. And she’d chase need through Fallon, remind her of Heyerdar’s power, his…virility. Fallon had slept with him for half a year. She had to still have some need for him. The whole thing would be fucked up but she had nothing to lose. Heyerdar could still say no.
“There are other ways to take the power I need.”
He frowned. “That’s not just illegal, it’s taboo.”
Ava lifted an eyebrow. He knew about consuming. Had everyone known about this method of taking power but her? “They’re caught up in the wonder of each other. Their absolute perfection. It’s not a part of the harmony of magic. And if we have to use something…unethical to return the balance, then I’m good with that.”
“How much power?”
She had him.
Kim Knox brews sex, magic, darkness and technology in a little corner of North West England. She writes erotic science fiction and fantasy romance for Carina Press, Ellora’s Cave, Samhain Publishing, Cleis Press and others.
SYNTHETIC DREAMS and BITTER HARVEST are available now from Carina Press.
AT THE SORCERER'S COMMAND, UNDER THE LION'S CURSE and DARK DEALINGS coming soon