The bulk of my work is categorized as Fantasy, but I've always wanted to write SF, specifically space opera. Hey, what GenXer doesn't have some sort of relationship with Star Wars and/or StarTrek or even Mad Max? However, the genre isn't exactly friendly to women in more ways than one. Yes, there are plenty of examples of women who pushed on anyway, and because of them I've always intended to be one. However, the idea of doing so has always intimidated the living shit out of me. Being told I wasn't welcome to try or even study in order to make the attempt didn't help. But I've never wanted to be one of those writers that simply does what they've already done. I enjoy challenging myself. I want to explore and learn and grow as a writer throughout my career. It's important. Naturally, that means I won't always be great at everything I try my hand at. I'm willing to take that risk, and hopefully, so are my readers. Mind, I've published one SF short at the start of my career, but Flash fiction hardly counts, right? So, I decided 2017 was the year I was going to face my fear.
After wrapping up Blackthorne, I took a month off to rest story-brain. (Hey, pulling all-nighters is fine in theory, but it takes its toll.) I spent the time reading SF by women, reading fiction and watching films with awesome female protagonists as well as studying liberal SF/military SF written by men. After some wonderful encouragement from peers, I made a hesitant first step, but it was like push-starting a muscle car on a flat stretch of road. Not much happened. I kept pushing, hoping for a hill. It seems I finally found the damned incline. The engine has coughed to life and is running in overdrive. I adore creative grooves. This is the joy in writing. This. Hell, yesterday, I didn't know what I was going to name the main character's ship and before I was 100% awake this morning I had it. I love when my brain does this. (I just wish I'd learn to trust that it will, eventually do so and stop panicking.) Professional writers can't count upon the manifestation of grooves. If you wait for your muse to whisper in your ear you'll never write, much less turn in anything to an editor on a deadline. But sometimes a story has to simmer a while. It's important to know when to force it and when not to. Much about writing is knowing yourself well enough to work well...if that makes sense.
Anyway, I hope your Friday is a good one, and that your weekend will be fabulous. I suspect mine will be spent typing for the most part and confusing my husband with my Jackie Chan style train-of-thought-changes. It 's a good thing. It keeps him on his toes. And you know what?
Fuck those guys that say women can't enter the SF clubhouse--particularly if they've been writing Fantasy.
is a Science Fiction and Fantasy author living in Texas.