Ylva author Roslyn Sinclair is here!
She’s giving away one copy of The Lily and the Crown to one lucky winner. More details are below.
Please welcome Roslyn Sinclair.
Before we begin, thanks so much for stopping by today for a chat.
Thank you so much for inviting me! I’m happy to be here.
You live in Georgia. What’s your favorite thing about living there? Least favorite?
I like being relatively close to Atlanta (takes me about 45 minutes to reach midtown) and all the access to the area’s rich culture and history that entails. Plus, huge bonus: I’m local to Dragon Con, which will make an appearance in my next book!
My least favorite is a tie between my state going red in every election and the murderous summer heat.
Does teaching keep you in the loop of the latest slang and trends? Which ones have you picked up and which do you find utterly silly?
Oh gosh. Honestly, social media does more for that than my students do—Tumblr’s where I tend to pick up the latest slang, memes, etc. If I ever mention them in class, my students look horrified. Once their English teacher is using them, they’re obviously no longer cool.
I have to keep myself from using “j/k” and “btw” in actual spoken conversation, though those have been around for a while. I’m definitely over “the ____ reading this” meme.
You write in longhand at your kitchen table. How long does it take you to complete a novel and what’s your process of transferring the story to your computer?
Well, to use a silly answer, it depends on how long the novel is. I don’t have as much time for my longhand process anymore, but it’s unbelievably helpful. I write for a predetermined length of time, and when I stop writing, I make sure that I make notes about what I want to start with next, so I don’t stare at the draft and go “Wait, what happens now?” Every few days, I type it all up myself.
The great thing about doing it this way is that it’s basically writing two drafts. In longhand, I just write out anything that comes to me and don’t worry so much about style or correctness. I’m just getting words on the page. When I type it up, I notice when I’m repeating things, when something sounds clunky, if something needs expansion or cutting, etc.
Tell us about your latest release?
My new book is a sci-fi romance titled The Lily and the Crown. It’s from the POV of a lonely, nerdy botanist named Arianna Geiker who lives on a remote space station on the edge of a galactic empire. Her father is an important imperial official who’s asked for the post as a way to defend the empire from marauding space pirates, especially their cunning, dangerous queen, Mír.
One day, Ari’s father presents her with a captured slave who is haughty and commanding, but who develops a curiously soft spot for Ari. Coincidentally, this is about the same time that Mír disappears from the public eye. Hmm…
Don’t let the words “sci-fi” fool you—the story is set in space, and there are ships and lasers and planets and so on, but the book is mainly a romance. With lots of sex.
What inspired you to write The Lily and the Crown?
The story started as the Devil Wears Prada fanfiction that I wrote under the pseudonym Telanu. At the time, I was in the middle of writing a gigantic story that eventually became the fanfic Truth and Measure, and I was running dry on inspiration. I needed a break. I got this idea about space pirates, and well, there you are. Originally, TLatC was a novella of 50,000 words (the novel is nearly twice that length), and when I finished it, I was all refreshed and ready to tackle T&M once more. It was tremendous fun.
What’s the last great book you read?
I’ve read some good stuff recently, but what immediately leapt to mind when I saw your question was Queer: A Graphic History by Meg-John Barker and Julia Scheele. It’s a fully illustrated, accessible introduction to queer theory and how it’s evolved over the years. Since queer theory can seem impenetrable and frustrating to newcomers, I found this approach refreshing and insightful. There’s also some crossover with feminist, postcolonial, and race theory. It was published in November 2016, so it’s pretty up-to-date.
And if it seems like its appeal would be primarily limited to an academic audience, I’d argue to the contrary and suggest anyone can and should give it a try!
Which authors have you influenced you the most?
Both professional and fan authors have influenced me. It’s really hard to pick, but the fan author who’s probably influenced my style the most over the years is a wonderful writer called Nym. She’s the author of Bed of Thorns, which (last time I checked) is the most popular story about a male/female pairing on the fandom website Archive of Our Own. However, I met her through the Harry Potter fandom, where I was blown away by the deceptive simplicity of her style and the way that she weaves it expertly through her characterization. She “disappears” from the story, her authorial handprint invisible until a particular turn of phrase or brilliant observation makes you stop and read something twice. Until then, you’re just living what’s happening along with the characters. It’s a trick I’ve always longed to master, and her popularity is 100% deserved.
We haven’t shared the same fandoms in a while, but I revisit her stories again and again. They’re real gems.
It’s even harder for me to pick a professional writer who’s influenced me the most. In this case, I might stick to individual works: The Handmaid’s Tale, The Tempest, Winter’s Tale (Helprin, not Shakespeare), The Road, and the Harry Potter series. And lots more! What many of my favorite books have in common is an element of the unreal, the fantastic, even if they’re not actual sci-fi or fantasy novels. Chronology slips back and forth, leaving the reader unsteady and de-centered from time. Or we face a dystopia that seems so disconnected from our own world (although the circumstances grow more eerily possible every day).
When you aren’t writing or reading, how do you spend your time?
I have a fun little car, and I love to drive around the twisty mountain roads that are about an hour away from where I live. I enjoy cooking and hanging out with friends. And, of course, I spend way too much time online…
Thanks so much for chatting today.
I appreciate the invitation! It’s been great chatting with you.
THE LILY AND THE CROWN
Release date: December 20, 2017
Romance / Science Fiction
Ariana “Ari” Geiker lives an isolated life on an imperial space station commanded by her father. The skilled, young botanist rarely leaves her living quarters, where she maintains an elaborate garden. When an imperious older woman is captured from a pirate ship and given to her as a slave, Ariana’s perfectly ordered life is thrown into chaos. Her nameless slave is watchful, intelligent, dangerous, and sexy, and seems to know an awful lot about tactics, star charts, and the dread, marauding pirate queen, Mir. What happens when the slave also reveals an expertise in seduction to her innocent mistress?
The Lily and the Crown is a lesbian romance about daring to risk your heart with someone you shouldn’t.
MEET THE AUTHOR
Roslyn Sinclair is a writer and teacher currently living in Georgia. Though a Southern girl, she’s found writing inspiration everywhere from Kansas City to Beijing. First thing in the morning, before she goes off to prep lesson plans, you can find her writing her books in longhand at her kitchen table. When she’s not writing or teaching, she’s probably reading, taking long walks, or going for a drive on the twisty mountain roads near her home.
CONNECT WITH ROSLYN SINCLAIR
Enter here for a chance to win a copy of
THE LILY AND THE CROWN
All you need to do is fill in your email, check the box confirming you aren’t a robot, and hit enter.
Thanks so much for stopping by today.
Best of luck to everyone who enters the giveaway.