The Storm Lords –released today, August 8th!
The heat took everything from Rowen: his parents, his voice when the local cure for heatstroke poisoned him, and the trust of his fellow villagers, who branded him a water thief. It would have claimed his life when he was deemed unworthy of precious resources and left in the sun to die, had not a strange man named Kristoff ridden in on the wind and told Rowen he had power.
Rowen works hard to become a Storm Lord, one of a secret magical group that brings storms to break the heat waves overtaking their world. But Rowen is starting his training at a disadvantage since he cannot speak and is much older than the other novices. The desire to please Kristoff inspires him to persevere even more than the threat of being sent back to his village to die should he fail. Still, he cannot gather rain, and when his abilities manifest, they are unlike anything known to the Storm Lords. Unless Kristoff can help him control his deadly powers, the entire world will be in danger.
Kristoff might be among the mightiest of the Storm Lords, but he’s never been a mentor before. For a chance to be with Rowen, he’s willing to risk everything.
The kind of books I like to write are also the ones I like to read.
I love fantasy novels. I've loved them since I was very young, and for a while I felt like I had read every major fantasy series in existence. Late in high school and college, I was hard-pressed to find something I hadn't read. But that wasn't the worst part.
It was really hard to find something unique. So many stories, while entertaining, felt derivative--I had seen it all before. There was nothing wrong with it, and I certainly enjoyed the familiar patterns. But I wanted something different. I wanted MC's who weren't all-powerful. I wanted diverse relationships. I wanted internal as well as external conflict, and enemies that were a bit different, or not even enemies at all, but something that couldn't be traditionally faced. I wanted the complexity of characterization from the romance genre worked into my fantasy novels.
Luckily, Ebooks started getting big just as I began to want a bit more out of my favorite genre. I was able to discover books that did things a little differently, including having diverse protagonists and unique experiences. The first time I read a fantasy novel that included an LGBT protagonist, I was overjoyed.
Of course, around this time I was also improving my own writing craft. Ideas, like they do now, were flowing, and I wanted to add my own spin to the idea of having diverse, romantic fantasy. I began to write and publish my own work with various M/M publishers.
DSP Publications is a unique imprint, and one I'm happy to write for. They publish books like mine--fantasy stories with diverse casts and M/M romance. Plenty of people around the internet have expressed interested in seeing genre works that are more diverse, and DSP Publications are where you find what you're looking for.
My book, The Storm Lords, has both a well-developed fantasy world and characters I worked hard to make relatable and fun to read about. Rowen, a mute young man from the desert, and Kristoff, a talented man who nevertheless must learn that all the power and skill in the world mean nothing when interacting with others and learning to teach. Both characters must build up their own confidence to not only succeed at using magic to help the world, but to succeed at their relationship. I had great fun writing the story, and I hope that people who are looking for unique stories like the ones DSP offers will enjoy it too.