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I don't aim to be a 'gay author', or have my books shelved under the LGBT sign. I just want to tell the stories I have in my head. The fact those stories contain a healthy amount of gay characters is no different than any other author writing about what he knows. The fantasy genre tends to break that convention somewhat, particularly if you're writing in a completely fabricated world. A Puerto Rican author wouldn't necessarily be writing about Puerto Ricans in the Mythical Land of Aguachufrita, except maybe for the lulz.

But I digress. I'm writing a fantastical story set in the real world, where you DO have Puerto Ricans, and Asians, and gay people in a specific cultural setting.

Since I begin with a set of characters as individuals somehow inhabiting this tale together, I don't start out by telling the audience where their sexual preferences lie because more often than not, it's not important to the plot, or not important in chapter one. I never thought of the impact this would have on the story.

Some of the comments I got were regarding Lincoln Guelcher's seemingly random appearance. And once I stepped out of the story and took a look at that, the Dan-Link connection did seem a little strange. Dan, for all we know at the time a 20-something slacker, somehow has this direct connection to a Private Investigator in his mid-30's.

For an instant I flailed, trying to come up with some explanation, something in both men's past that would have caused them to meet.

Then I came to my senses and looked back at the very first inklings I had of this story. I took a look at my own life and what elements of that I drew into the story. I'm not as young as Dan, but in my own circle - mind you, not my inner circle, but certainly within my circle - are men 10 to 20 years older than me whom I only met because we're all gay. And we run into each other at different parties hosted by other gay men. Do I talk to them outside of these parties? Not really. Could I? Sure. And if my best friend were in trouble and I knew one of them may somehow be able to help my best friend, I would call them up in a heartbeat. It's the same with any subculture, even fandom.

So, I have a choice to make. Leave it in the air, play with the reader's expectations and let them suspect Link for a few chapters, or put it all out in the open from the start. I don't even have to make this decision right away. It's simple enough I can retcon it later. I just thought it was interesting how something I took for granted was odd to some.

Attention to detail, I has it. Sometimes. LOL

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
pega
Jul. 11th, 2009 06:39 pm (UTC)
I see what you're saying, but doesn't that apply to anything? Does this friendship/acquaintanceship (is that even a word) need to be explained? Why is it so unusual for these two to be connected? To use a real life example - do you find it necessary to explain how/why you and I are connected and why we know each other? Because let's face it, in a superficial look how and why would you be friends with a 40something mother of 4?

I haven't read, so it may be a valid point that needs to be addressed, but I don't see where every connection has to be explained. The world is made up of many different kinds of people, and even in a certain person's (character's) immediate circle, they aren't all going to fit a certain shape/size/mold. So why should it be explained at the outset, instead of during development in the tale?

Just me throwing in my two cents ;)
elven_wolf
Jul. 11th, 2009 07:21 pm (UTC)
That's why I'm thinking just let it be for now and see how it lays at the end.

It's just something people have commented on and since it seemed odd for them to do so, I had to analyze it to death. You know me better by now. LOL

They say the first three chapters are the hardest, and boy, they ain't kidding. But they're not the be-all and shouldn't be treated as such.

Don't mind me, I'm just musing. It is interesting to think about how people perceive things... because in a sense you're playing with their consciousness when you're telling a story. On one hand you are just telling a story... but in a very real sense you're also manipulating a part of a person's brain. And while every brain is different and you can't control them all the same way, it's something to think about.
pega
Jul. 11th, 2009 08:13 pm (UTC)
LOL Yes I do know you better by now, but you also know me well enough to know I'm going to argue the other side just for the hell of it sometimes. ;)

I still say, finish the whole thing and then go back to rework it. Too much editing now is going to kill the story before it even begins. :P
elven_wolf
Jul. 11th, 2009 08:18 pm (UTC)
Indeed.
(Deleted comment)
elven_wolf
Jul. 11th, 2009 07:22 pm (UTC)
YES! I charge you with writing this tale. And... GO!
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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