I'm delighted to welcome author Jessica Subject back to my blog today. She's the queen of sexy, slightly naughty aliens, and she's brought one along for a visit (his name is Bryce). Before we get some much-needed alone time with her hunk from space (Google likes organic keywords...bear with me), I figured we should learn a thing or two about science fiction, science fiction romance, and writing in general (i.e., I needed an excuse to goof off and make pretty graphics).
Balancing Sex and Sci-Fi
by Jessica E. Subject
Because science fiction romance combines two different genres, there are many assumptions from both sides. Some Sci-Fi readers believe that SFR is sex with aliens, sex in space, or something similar, that no research was involved in creating the story at all. On the romance side, some readers believe that SFR is too technical, or has too much world building and becomes boring with all the unnecessary details. While some of those assumptions are true with some of the SFR books I’ve read, SFR ranges from one extreme to the other. My favorites always fit right in the middle with just the right amount of world-building and hot sex. I guess the key is--there can't just be hot sex.
For example, besides those from Earth, I included at least seven species of aliens in Bryce, from planets across the universe. I found the inspiration for some on Pinterest, and others from my own mind. I keep a record of each species and which characters are which in a notebook, on a spreadsheet in Excel, and on a board in Scrivener. I keep each up-to-date so I have all the information depending on where I’m writing. The characters who are part of the Galactic Alliance are mostly humanoid, but each has at least one or two characteristics that makes them distinctly different from us on Earth.
There's quite a bit of plotting involved in writing as well. Bryce is the rewrite of a story I wrote at the beginning of my writing career, before I was published. It began as an alien living on Earth story, but after several edits, and a letter from a bestselling, well-respected author, who is also a friend, I decided to take the story from what it was, and make it better. Bryce went from being an alien who worked for the local police force to being an alien hunter sent to Earth to destroy the Erebus who had been spotted there. Lindsay was a woman who found out her father came from another planet in the first draft, but in the final version, she’s the long lost Princess of Hemera who escaped to Earth when her planet was invaded by the Erebus.
by Jessica E. Subject
A dedicated Defender…
Bryce fell in love once, but after Lalia was ripped away from him, he locked his heart from feeling anything for anyone else. Instead, he devotes his life to the Galactic Alliance, killing every bloodthirsty Erebus he comes across.
A shunned princess…
Lalia Comosova fell in love with the wrong man. When her parents learned of her transgressions, they sent her to Earth to hide her error in judgment from the rest of the kingdom.
A second chance?
When these lovers are reunited after many years apart, they have a chance to find happiness together. But fate steps in and threatens to rip them apart as it did years ago.
Bryce raised his crossbow, lining his sights on the creature standing amongst the bushes, its branch-like tentacles undulating in the gentle breeze. Focusing the crosshairs on the alien’s torso, he drew in a deep breath. He had one shot. If he missed, the Erebus would cry out and alert the natives of Terra to its existence, resulting in more casualties. At first glance, no one on the planet, also called Earth, would believe an Erebus anything more than an overgrown bush, but Bryce knew the truth. He’d trained to hunt the creatures from childhood.
Each step carefully placed, he advanced until he stood twenty feet from the Erebus, no chance to miss the shot. With a slight movement of his finger, he squeezed the trigger, sending a zuranium-tipped arrow racing toward the alien.
“Quinn, would you grab me another garbage bag?”
Fornax. The creature lunged toward the female voice, Bryce’s arrow stuck in one of its tentacles. A kill, but not instant.
He loaded another arrow. At the risk of being seen, he charged through the hedges. He had to cut the Erebus off before it had a chance to kill the Terran. He leaped over metal furniture and large urns, keeping his focus on the creature.
“What the hell? Get out of my yard!”
The woman rushed him, but Bryce darted around her. When the Erebus lumbered in front of him, he raised his weapon and fired. A clean shot to the middle. The creature dropped like a fallen log, crushing the furniture it landed on.
Bryce loaded the crossbow again. No time to celebrate the kill. He had to worry about the possibility of other Erebus in the area, along with the Terran woman who had seen him. Instead of running away screaming, as he’d expected her to do, she stared, wide-eyed in horror. Not at him, but the Erebus. Her body trembled as she shuffled backward, mumbling incomprehensible words.
An unexpected sense of familiarity washed over him. He couldn’t draw his attention away from her slim figure, the way her long brown hair flowed over her shoulders. Far more attractive than he’d pictured the Terrans when others talked about them. He took a closer glance. Lalia? How had she traveled so far from home without anyone knowing? She was no stranger, and definitely not Terran. Or, perhaps she was simply a doppelganger of the woman he’d once loved. He had the sudden urge to comfort her, relieve her worry. Hold her in his arms the way he had many years ago. But what if the missing princess had somehow made her way to a planet unaware life existed beyond their own? After she’d left Hemera and him behind without so much as a goodbye, he’d searched everywhere. Though not once had he thought to look on Terra.
A ground-shattering bellow pierced the night. Bryce spun around, finding himself face-to-face with another Erebus. It stared at him with beady red eyes. Thick black goop dripped from its mouth.
Bryce raised his bow, but the creature slammed him with one of its tentacles, flinging him back. The Erebus lunged at Lalia.
Rolling to his knees, Bryce aimed and fired. He hit the alien from behind, launching it forward. Onto his former lover. Slinging the bow over his shoulder, he raced toward her. The creature’s tentacles still pulsed, even though dead. Careful not to trip himself up, he shoved his hands under the creature’s torso and heaved it off her.
Lalia stood immediately and wiped the black goop from her clothes, as if she hadn’t been flattened by an alien. “They weren’t supposed to follow me. I was supposed to be safe here.”
About Jessica E. Subject
Jessica E. Subject is the author of science fiction romance, mostly alien romances, ranging from sweet to super hot. Sometimes she dabbles in paranormal and contemporary as well, bringing to life a wide variety of characters. In her stories, you could not only meet a sexy alien or two, but also clones and androids. You may be transported to a dystopian world where rebels are fighting to live and love, or to another planet for a romantic rendezvous.
When Jessica isn't reading, writing, or doing dreaded housework, she likes to get out and walk with her giant, hairy dog her family adopted from the local animal shelter.
Jessica lives in Ontario, Canada with her husband and two energetic children. And she loves to hear from her readers. You can find her at jessicasubject.com.