It's funny, because in deference to conventional wisdom, I spent my struggling writer years trying to suppress my naturally baroque literary voice and write clean, spare prose. I finally gave up and embraced my baroque tendencies when I wrote the Kushiel series.
We may not have demon fathers dangling offers of infernal power before us, but everyone understands what it means to struggle with temptation or resist the urge to give in to our baser natures.
Clearly, I'm drawn to characters with inner conflicts.
I started a novel in the back of a notebook, and it was great because it looked like I was taking notes. And I just, I kept it up, it was sort of fantasy, it was part soap opera. It was utterly dreadful, but that's how I got hooked.
When I started really writing fantasy, one of the things I noticed was a real absence of sexuality in the genre at all. And it's such a profound part of the human experience that it's a really big thing to leave out.
I don't really consider my work, on the whole, 'fringe' in my own mind; science fiction and fantasy have been pretty solidly in the mainstream for a while.
Having a literary agent makes a huge difference in submitting work. My agent has access and tremendous passion.
I have always loved fantasy; I think probably stepping through the wardrobe with Lucy in C.S. Lewis's 'Narnia Chronicles' was my first exposure when I was really little.
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