Happy Sunday! I’m back home in the Pacific Northwest and life is returning to normal. Woo! Today, we have a guest blogger who lives in my piece of the world, Louisa Kelley. We met this summer at Pride Northwest (Portland, OR), and had a great conversation about lesbian fiction and our place in the publishing world. She recently released her first lesbian fantasy romance, Unbidden Romance, with Loose Id and is pleased as hell to have done so. I don’t blame her. 🙂
Heartbreak is real life, right?
by Louisa Kelley
Someone asked me recently where I got ideas for my stories. From my own life? Movies? Imagination? Hmm…I reflected on my current writing journey. Where did all those ideas come from, anyway? Beyond my own admittedly geeky, dragon-obsessed, rather fevered imagination, how else did the ideas roll? My first female to female romance, Unbidden Dragon, was recently published. How did all that happen?
I’m a gay woman fantasy romance writer, with a previously published paranormal trilogy which features the standard M/F romance. My publisher had made me take out a same-sex kiss in my first book, and at the time, had little interest in lesbian (non-ménage) romances. So I waited. Doors were opening and I wanted to be ready. Ideas percolated.
I love romance and fantasy so much. Writing the trilogy allowed me to create a sensuous world of dragon shape-shifters and use that world in the writing of a female-oriented love story. As my dragons say: “It doesn’t matter who you love, only that you love.”
The initial rush of inspiration for Unbidden Dragon, came from the writer’s standard – heartbreak. I was involved with someone, yet there was a woman from my past who continued to lurk in a tiny corner of my heart and damn it, I wanted her gone. I wrote the first scene from the view point of a shape-shifter female who is getting over a very ill-advised affair with a human woman. The writing was cathartic; I had control of the narrative. Nice.
Then, there was love. Love is the classic driver for story and inspiration; the ultimate muse. New love appeared and my two-year journey of book creation flowed and changed with the status of my romantic life. I admit as I wrote the last few scenes, I was surprised by tears and a welling of unexpected emotion. The internal journeys of the characters carried traces of my own heart. As my characters triumphed, so did I.
The story was done, but the writing journey not quite over. Something a friend said gave me a prompt for a poem, and suddenly I was writing poetry about heartache and loss. This too, was cathartic. For me, ideas for the writer’s journey cluster like a storm and part for the sun, over and over again.
Bio for Louisa Kelley:
Romance and science fiction took firm hold of Louisa Kelley’s imagination at age nine, when she read the books Little Women, by Louisa May Alcott, and the Narnia series, by C.S. Lewis. She is convinced the genre paranormal romance, which developed years later, came into existence purely for her benefit. After all, it’s what’s been in her heart all these years.
She resides in Portland, Oregon where, in a strangely perfect combination of rainy winters and urban skyline, her writing inspiration abounds. Meet the sexy world that’s been evolving in her fevered brain…She’d love you to join her in some over-the-top sexy adventures with the Draca; dragon shape-shifters of a very different kind.
Member of Romance Writers of America
Member of Rose City Romance Writers
Member of Portland Lesbian Writers Group (PoLeWG)