Gabriella Hewitt


Monday, July 4th, 2011
Meet An Author Monday — Xakara

HAPPY 4th of JULY!

Today on Meet An Author Monday is Xakara!

Writing From the Middle: Bi/Pan/Poly

Thank you for having me today, Gabriella.

Being here is a wonderful way to celebrate today’s release of DAWN’S EARLY LIGHT (PsiCorps #2). As the second volume in my PsiCorps Chronicles the new book picks up six months after the end of GHOST OF CHRISTMAS PAST (PsiCorps #1), a few days before the Fourth of July. It’s centered around U.S. Marshal Mackenzie Matthews and his attachment to the agents in his care. Marshal Matthews and his partner Marshal Kincaid Ides are introduced in GHOST OF CHRISTAMS PAST and there is a direct follow-thru in the seeds of interest sprinkled between Mackenzie and Quintus and those hinted at with Mackenzie and Kincaid.
Rather than focus solely on the new release, I’d like to explore my writing as a whole and how the prevalent themes I work with as a backdrop are utilized in the PsiCorps Chronicles. The shorthand version of what I write would be ménage or in the case of PsiCorps, ménage-a-more. Slightly more informative would be the phrase, “non-traditional romance”. But I think the longer spiel is the best, I write Multicultural Bi/Pan/Poly Erotic Paranormal Romance. I just love the look on someone’s face when I say it. *Smile* Usually, I have them on everything but the term Bi/Pan/Poly and since PsiCorps is a beautiful example of this particular exploration, I’ll break down how it’s explored in both books.

First a few quick definitions. Bi/Pan/Poly is short for Bisexual/Pansexual/Polyamorous. Bisexual has a few definitions, traditionally it’s considered to be the active attraction to both men and women. The prefix of “bi” implies two and over time has come to imply equal attraction, but neither are necessarily true to those who use the term to describe themselves.

Pansexual is broader in scope, it circumvents the implied gender binary of the term bisexual, while also taking gender out of the equation entirely. It conveys a potential attraction to all gender expressions, as well as all interpretations of traditional gender expressions. Femininity, masculinity, the space in between, the spaces outside; it’s all acknowledged as a spectrum and regardless of where someone falls upon that continuum, they are a potential mate based on their individuality, rather than their gender identity, gender expression, or genital configuration.

Polyamory literally translates as “many loves”. It is a form of non-monogamy that acknowledges the ability, and perhaps even necessity, of loving more than one person at a time in an open and mutually consensual agreement. This has countless permutations, in particular I focus on polyfidelity and the creation of poly-households and intimate networks.

All of these things come with societal connotations, but I chose to forgo the angst of these concepts and place the stories in established worlds so that they might shine for the love stories they are, rather than the political commentary that they could be.

In GHOST OF CHRISTMAS PAST, the idea of psychic triads is introduced as a standard, mainstream convention and polyamory has found its place in society. High psychic ability creates a resonance best balanced between three or more people. And although not every triad, compass (four partners), or circle (five or more), becomes sexual partners, having someone able to feel your thoughts, emotions and passions as their own leads to relationships more often than not. The inevitable family structures that resulted have become a cultural norm and are promoted among Psis, (those with high psychic scores), to optimize their psychic ability. There are clear references to the fact that poly rights as a whole, rather than just an exemption for Psis, were fought for and won sometime in the last twenty years, but the world at the moment we enter it, already stands tall on its new cultural viewpoint.

In DAWN’S EARLY LIGHT, the underlying poly themes are further explored with the idea of intimate networks. Our expanding group is emotionally or sexually intimate, but not in an equal and all-encompassing manner between them. Many of them are metamours, that is, connected through a shared lover, without being lovers themselves. The growth of this intimate network into a family is at the heart of book two and beyond.

The erotic factor is conveyed as much through a pervasive sensuality born from familiarity, compatibility and genuine affection, as through actual love scenes. In both books there are more sensual scenes than sexual scenes, because polyamory is about the relationships and interactions, not solely about the sex. That said, the sex in the PsiCorps stories is a lot of fun to write as I watch the relationships unfold. The still untitled third book has the most scenes so far, but I believe that sex should be treated as a character and this is hir time onstage, so it’s appropriate.

The love scenes in PsiCorps are predominantly male-male because there are more male characters in the series. This is in part intentional and entirely accidental. I chose to write MMF, (or MMMF, MMMF-MMM), to explore male bisexuality which is constantly overlooked. Men in society, and especially in romance, are treated as either gay or straight, ignoring the bisexual population entirely. Ménage, or more acurately polyamory, is a growing subgenre that finally acknowledges that place in between. Being bisexual does not automatically mean being polyamorous, but to show it on the page within the context of a loving relationship requires a poly context. Otherwise, the character is perceived as gay or straight based on the relationship they end up in and it defeats the purpose of having a bisexual character. In my case, I also wanted to do poly-positive and sex-positive stories so there will always be at least three love interest in my work.

That intention aside, I didn’t make the characters predominantly male on purpose. Once I have two, I’m open to whatever comes about. In PsiCorps, it just so happens that they came to mind as men and I went with it because it rang true. Since I’m not confined by gender or gender expression, every story can be told in its own truth, rather than forced to fit a preconceived notion of what romance can be. It’s the freedom of non-traditional romance and since freedom of the mark of this 4th of July holiday, I’m happy to have had the chance to share this glimpse with all of you.

Enjoy the blurbs below and leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of GHOST OF CHRISTMAS PAST or DAWN’S EARLY LIGHT. Please remember to leave an email or other contact information with your comment.

~Xakara

GHOST OF CHRISTMAS PAST

Blurb:
U.S. Marshal Mackenzie Matthews has spent the last six months on the most important witness protection assignment of his career—protecting PsiCorps’ own. The four agents under his care in the program have always had his admiration but now, under such close quarters, they’ve earned his affections as well. Bonds formed after a dramatic showdown on Christmas Eve and the concerted efforts in its wake to build a sense of normalcy around his pregnant charge has Mackenzie that happiest he’s been in years and the most frightened.

He dances along the edge of the poly relationship between the agents, soaking in the emotional intimacy and physical affection, but turning a blind eye to something more. He’s been alone in the world since the death of his cousin six years ago and all he has, the most important people in his life, he owes to her. The remnants of an intimate network that once held his cousin close to its heart surrounds him. His Resonance Partner Kincaid, once a part of her Triad. His new found crush Quintus, once her closest college. And his long term fascination Riley—now pregnant and emotionally vulnerable—her best friend for years. He stepped in and took the assignments to honor her, but he knows the ghost of her hides in his smile and haunts the ones she loves. The ones he loves now too.

To push for more not only questions his integrity as the lead marshal on the case, but it threatens the surrogate family that has engulfed him a sense of home. Mackenzie is the only one that can see the danger in every step he takes—so he stands in place. He soon learns that he’s the only one not willing to move forward. In a whirlwind of revelation as the country celebrates the stars and stripes, Mackenzie is faced with what it means to truly be free. He’ll learn that sometimes, no amount of caution can save you from what’s meant to be. Sometimes, no matter how deeply you bury secret desires in the darkness, it takes but a single kiss to reveal it all, by the dawn’s early light.

DAWN’S EARLY LIGHT

Blurb:
Four years after being gunned down by the city’s most infamous crime boss, Empath and PsiCorps Agent Torrin St. James wakes from a coma to find that he’s seemingly lost everything. Entered into the WitSecPsi program, as part of his cover Torrin is believed dead by the members of his psychic Triad, Resonance Partner Riley Valin and Psi Anchor Sky Roarke–his fiancé. Faced with nothing but the cold comfort of justice in testifying against the crime boss, Torrin convinces his Handler Quintus to help him barter his cooperation for a chance to break protocol and see Sky and Riley before the trial.
Two days before Christmas, in a secure safe house hours outside the city, PsiCorps makes arrangements for Torrin to see the two people he loves the most. It’s everything Torrin’s wanted from the moment he opened his eyes, but when the time finally comes he’s left to face a multitude of truths and a symphony of sorrows. After four years the loves of his life have moved on, his Handler Quintus has been keeping secrets, and there’s a high-level leak in the agency he’s given his life to. The entire world has turned upside down and Torrin doesn’t know if he has the right to fix it, but he’s about to find out. Isolated in a safe house, under the worst storm of the season and no way to turn back, he’ll learn if their feelings for each other are still passion incarnate or if he’s just a ghost from Christmas past.

Available Now at LSB
Author Bio

Xakara is a new transplant to beautiful New Mexico. She lives overlooking the Sandia mountains with her long time sweetie and a handful of friends that are like family. Never found anywhere without a book to read or a notebook to write in; she knew she’d be an author at nine years old when someone missed one of the daily installments of the stories she told on the playground and told her to write them down.

Equally splitting her time between the worlds in her head and the world around her, she manages to find her way through life with a smile and zen-vibe that carries her and her heroines through the tough times. She smiles every time she tells someone she knows that she writes erotic urban fantasies and they reply, “I always knew you would”.

Becoming a paranormal romance author was a happy accident when she chose to write a short novella to clear her mind of edits on her first urban fantasy novel. Now she finds she enjoys the focus on the relationships and loves traversing the two genres, and finding new ways to define both.

She always loves to talk to fans and new friends and can be found several places, waiting to catch up.

Twitter
Facebook
GoodReads
LiveJournal
Website
Email: Xakara@Xakara.com

Powered by Linky Tools

Click here to enter your link and view this Linky Tools list…

16 comments to “Meet An Author Monday — Xakara”

  1. Jean Marie Ward
    Comment
    1
      · July 4th, 2011 at 1:48 pm · Link

    What timing! DAWN’S EARLY LIGHT qualifies as Christmas in July, literally. :grin: Best of luck with the book and on your first New Mexico Fourth!



    • Xakara
      Comment
      1.1
        · July 4th, 2011 at 2:07 pm · Link

      Thanks, Jean Marie! I see it as Christmas in July too! :)

      It’s actually my third year in New Mexico, but that’s still plenty new here! It is a new experience this time around as this is the first 4th without all of the celebration due to the wildfires.

      Happy 4th!

      ~X



  2. Mara
    Comment
    2
      · July 4th, 2011 at 10:47 pm · Link

    I love the premise for these books. What a cool world you’ve created!
    Mara
    marajbrandon AT earthlink DOT net



    • Xakara
      Comment
      2.1
        · July 5th, 2011 at 1:33 am · Link

      Thanks, Mara! I had no idea what would unfold when I first wrote down the idea of a federal agent waking from a coma to find his family had gone on without him. I’m so grateful I didn’t stand in its way and let it flow the way it needed to.

      I’m excited about having another book out and a third on the way, expanding the world and getting a chance to see how others see it.

      Good Luck on the drawing!

      ~X



  3. Holdt
    Comment
    3
      · July 5th, 2011 at 1:32 am · Link

    Beautiful write-up and exposition on the series. I simply have to get my hands on some copies!
    Xakara, I love your explanation/affirmation of the difficulties in perception faced by bi/poly/pansexual men in the context of monogamy – it’s spot on and so delightful to read from another person’s standpoint.

    I very much look forward to finding a copy of Dawn’s Early Light, and if I can’t find it locally, I will definitely be purchasing a copy online!

    <3!



    • Xakara
      Comment
      3.1
        · July 5th, 2011 at 1:44 am · Link

      Thanks so much, Holdt!

      I’m so sorry, I don’t think I mentioned that both books are ebooks, out through Liquid Silver Books. If you don’t have an ereader, you can get a Kindle app for the PC, Mac, iPhone or whatever else you’d like to read on.

      I’m so glad my viewpoint made you happy. I’ll be doing a “Writing From the Middle” series that will deal with several aspects on Bi/Pan/Poly writing. I’ll make sure to announce it on FB and Twitter so you can take a look. :)

      ~X



      • Holdt
        Comment
        3.1.1
          · July 5th, 2011 at 2:41 am · Link

        See, now that’s even better! *grin*
        I love ebooks! Thanks for the info – I’ll check the publishers site out pronto.



  4. Krystal Larson
    Comment
    4
      · July 5th, 2011 at 1:53 am · Link

    This looks like a great read! Thank you! edysicecreamlover18@gmailDOTcom



    • Xakara
      Comment
      4.1
        · July 5th, 2011 at 2:28 am · Link

      Thank you, Krystal! I hope you enjoy it when you finally get a chance to read it. Whether you win it or buy it, I’m more than happy to hear feedback on the series. :)

      ~X



  5. Sherry S.
    Comment
    5
      · July 5th, 2011 at 4:48 am · Link

    Your books sound like they would be great reads.

    sstrode at scrtc dot com



    • Xakara
      Comment
      5.1
        · July 5th, 2011 at 3:03 pm · Link

      Thank you, I’m glad you think so! :)

      ~X



  6. Lindsey E
    Comment
    6
      · July 6th, 2011 at 5:36 am · Link

    I enjoyed the first book and am glad to see there will be more in the series. I loved Shifting Passions and had been waiting for stories when I realized you had the book out with LSB. I need to reread and get immersed in the PsiCorps world.

    linze_e at hotmail.com



    • Xakara
      Comment
      6.1
        · July 6th, 2011 at 12:10 pm · Link

      Hi, Lindsey!

      Thank you so much for your comment and your compliment. I’m thrilled to know you enjoyed both books and are happy to reenter my PsiCorps world for the longer haul.

      Another Therian World release is coming in October, A WAY TO A DRAGON’S HEART. And, fingers crossed, when I come back to talk about it, I’ll also be able to discuss two other Therian World novels or novellas coming right after it. So both worlds will be getting their due over the next year.

      I can’t wait to know what you think about all that’s around the corner. :)

      ~X



  7. June M.
    Comment
    7
      · July 7th, 2011 at 2:04 am · Link

    Your books sound really good and unique. Thanks for sharing with us.

    manning_j2004 at yahoo dot com



    • Xakara
      Comment
      7.1
        · July 7th, 2011 at 2:08 am · Link

      You’re welcome, June. And thank you for coming by. Your comment was so well timed that I’m feeling incredibly generous.

      I’m definitely picking more than one winner! :)

      ~X



  8. Xakara
    Comment
    8
      · July 7th, 2011 at 3:25 am · Link

    Thank you to everyone that commented! Winners have been chosen and contacted. If you didn’t win, or are coming late to the thread, feel free to continue the conversation, but for further chance to win a PsiCorps Book please join in on another Writing From the Middle segment at Beyond Romance.

    Thanks again!



Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Gabriella Hewitt » Blog Archive » LGBT History – Xakara

Leave a Reply




XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

:wink: :-| :-x :twisted: :) 8-O :( :roll: :-P :oops: :-o :mrgreen: :lol: :idea: :-D :evil: :cry: 8) :arrow: :-? :?: :!: