When did you start writing? What was the first thing you ever wrote?
The first thing I ever wrote as a short story in fourth grade called “Rad Brad”. I still have a copy of the book. It was about an elementary school kid whose father was a government law enforce and his mother was a secretary for the United States Furniture. Brad was swimming in the family pool with his pet dolphin when he was struck by a mysterious ray of light that gave him super powers. Needless to say my fascination with science fiction has been present since I was a kiddo.
Did you have a role model who taught you that your own identity was unique or important? How did they teach you the value of your identity?
I didn’t have a role model that I actually knew, though I learn that my own identity was unique from listening to Janet Jackson’s Velvet Rope album. It came out at time that I was struggling with identifying who I was. I was a senior in high school and adulthood was around the corner and I didn’t know what the next steps for me was because I didn’t know who I was. The album, for me, was about self-acceptance and being true to yourself. Needless to say, shortly after I started the processes of coming out to my friends first and then my family.
What is one thing you'd like people to take away from your work?
With a science-fiction backdrop, Aberration at its core is about acceptance; whether that is achieving acceptance from others or accepting yourself for who you are – with all your wonderfulness and flaws.
Did you ever consider writing under a pseudonym?
Not really. And as you ask the question, it makes me wonder if I’m narcissistic and wanted to make sure people knew it was me who wrote Aberration. I’m going to hope that’s not the case.
Are any parts of your story drawn from real life?
There are many parts of Aberration that come from real life. For example, one race is called the Solraci which is my husband’s name spelled backward with an i at the end. One of the city’s names is Mirador which was a smaller building next to the 5/3 rd Bank building downtown. I would walk by it every time I came back from court and say it out loud in a deep voice. The way I said it made it sound so mysterious. There are many more, but I don’t want to give them all away.
Who was the most difficult character to write about? Who was the most fun?
The most difficult character to write about was any character that engages with another romantically. I was writing for a young adult audience and also trying to ensure my writing did sound cheesy. I hope I succeeded. The most fun, as horrible as this sounds, are my villains. I say this about stories in general. I think the villains are always the most interesting. Being a hero is easy; the character wants to do good. People as a whole strive to do good. But villains are their own breed. I find there is more depth to the villains, more of a story. I always find myself asking, “Why are you so mean?”
How do you write characters who differ from you (of another gender, sexuality, race, etc.) without being offensive or stereotyping?
While I hope nothing I wrote offends any of my readers, I’m sure I won’t be able to satisfy everyone. I do spend time doing research, but mostly I do run some of my ideas by my trusty group of friends to see if what I’m thinking is funny or offensive.
Are there any difficulties particular to being an LGBT novelist? Any joys?
I don’t really know. This is the only novel I’ve written and my job keeps me busy that I’m not really involved in the writing community. So I don’t have much to compare it with.
Do you have a personal motto?
What’s the one book you think all people should read? What is the one book you think all LGBT people should read (besides your own)?
The one book I think everyone should read is the one that appeals to their interest. I’m a huge science fiction nerd. So if I were to suggest anything, it would be of that genre.
Do you mind telling us what you’re working on next?
I am working on the sequel to Aberration. It is called Incursion. It is scheduled to be released November 2018.
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