Mary Ann Loesch the author of Nephilim has cruised by toady to discuss Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance with us. Lets give her a big Diva welcome!
Urban Fantasy or Paranormal Romance: Which one are you writing?
I’ve been writing steadily for the last seven years, and often people will ask what genre I write. When I say urban fantasy, many of them will nod, smile, and move on with a vaguely puzzled expression on their face. A few will be brave and ask for a definition of the genre. But though I’ve been writing urban fantasy for a long time, it’s still sometimes a difficult thing to define. It is constantly evolving, just as the fantastical worlds in it do, and it’s the subject of great debate between authors, publishers, and readers. I think the only way to solve the debate about what urban fantasy really is would be to have Oprah Winfrey read an urban fantasy novel and promote it in her book club.
But alas, Oprah doesn’t read urban fantasy and the book club is no more…
That’s okay. Writing a genre that is always redefining itself is fun. In case you aren’t sure what urban fantasy is exactly, here’s a brief definition: Urban fantasies are stories with otherworldly creatures in them which take place on earth. They typically occur in modern times, and usually the setting is a city or well-populated area. There can be a sprinkling of romance between characters, but it doesn’t necessarily have to have a happy ending. A mystery will unfold during the tale, keeping the reader turning the pages. Many times the story will arc over a series of books. Of course, there are exceptions to all of the things I just stated, but those are the basics. A few examples of current urban fantasy titles you may recognize are any of the Sookie Stackhouse novels by Charlaine Harris or the Dresden Files by Jim Butcher.
For me, the appeal of urban fantasy is the mix of romance and plot. Ah, sweet, sweet romance! But unlike many readers, I don’t always need a happy ending. Let’s face it, friends, happy endings aren’t always realistic, and sometimes they aren’t even interesting. As a writer, you have to be aware of your feelings on this subject because it definitely affects the genre you write in.
So how do you know if you are writing urban fantasy or its close cousin, paranormal romance? If you like the strange and unusual but need your characters to be united in lust, love, or holy matrimony at the end, you’re probably writing paranormal romance. In these cases, the romance drives the plot forward and the story is more centered around the characters romantic feelings for each other rather than the action. If your novel falls into that line of thinking, then you are deep in paranormal romance territory.
Typically, the romance does not drive my books. That doesn’t mean I don’t like it though! One of the greatest tricks an author can pull out of their writer’s cap is the ability to make your readers sense the underlying tension, the hint of romance, and yet never fully deliver it. Making the reader long for that hidden lust or love to come out can be a powerful plot device that enhances the mystery you are creating. Always leave them begging for just a taste more!
In my urban fantasy, Nephilim, my main characters definitely have the “hots” for each other, but it isn’t the driving point of the story. I’ve tried to weave in their lingering looks and naughty thoughts in a way that makes the reader want to see them get together, but yet, still focus on the main plot. Have I succeeded in this endeavor? Well, you be the judge and let me know what you think!
Here’s a brief synopsis of Nephilim which is available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Borders, Manic Readers, and many other online stores.
When sin stains your soul, he tattoos your skin…
Tattoo artist Nathan Ink is more than he seems. An angel living in secret on earth, he forces his clients to face their flaws by tattooing images of their sins on their bodies, but this glimpse into the soul often results in his clients' deaths. Although Nathan avoids the other angels, when they ask him to keep an eye on Faye, a nephilim being stalked by another of her kind, he reluctantly agrees.
The angels have kept Faye in the dark about her stalker, but to keep her close to Nathan, they've tasked her with investigating the high mortality rate of Nathan's clients. Despite her distaste for his methods, she finds herself fighting a growing attraction to Nathan, and discovering he's not a rogue after all forces her to question her own mission. When Faye learns her stalker is another nephilim who intends to use her to breed a new race of hellish beings, teaming up with Nathan may be the only way to prevent a genocide.
Contains strong language and violence
Be sure to check out the other blogs participating in this giveaway!
May 7 - The Jeep Diva - Review/Giveaway/Guest Post
May 8 - Paranormal Wasteland - Review/Giveaway
May 9- Romancing the Darkside - Review/Guest Post
May 10 - TE Garden of Books - Review/Giveaway/Interview
May 11 - Sara's Point of View - Review/Giveaway/Interview