Seems like this meme is the next big thing! For those not aware, there’s a meme going around in which authors are participating — what’s the next book? It’s a tag sort of thing, and I was tagged by two wonderful friends and writers. The first, Rachel Gold, has addressed the transgender community with wonderful success in her book, Being Emily. The second, Orphan Maker.

the next big thing
Where did the idea for the book come from?

There was a New Zealand television show on that became all the rage among my friends in 2003 or 2004. It was called The Tribe. I’m for all things post-apocalyptic and I was able to locate a copy of one of the episodes online. I could only stomach about ten minutes of the thing before turning it off.

It was all…wrong! A band of children survivors using electricity and playing video games? Really? I demand a certain level of credibility factor in this particular genre, and was sorely disappointed by the modern conveniences available to a world of children.

While I had considered writing a post-apoc novel at some point, I hadn’t considered the “fatal virus kills all adults” before. Writing romance with children, however, is a federal offense (not to mention quite squicky,) so I fast-forwarded the timeline to five years after the virus swept over the world. From there it was just a matter of considering how far down civilization had fallen.

What genre does your book fall under?

Science fiction, lesbian romance, post-apocalyptic, young adult?

What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?

Ooooo, I like this question! How about checking out the Pinterest board I have for Orphan Maker? I’m big on visuals and have boards for most my stories there.

the next big thing
Marissa Loomis is being played by musician Heather Peace (with a slight hair color change.) And Gwen Grant stars Mila Kunis (unless I find someone better.)

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Can two plague survivors come together and find love despite overwhelming differences in culture and experiences?

But really…how can I leave it at just a single sentence? How about the book blurb to go along with it?

Ragged, starving refugees want to settle in Lindsay Crossing. In a world waking up from a devastating plague, control of resources—and people—is the key to survival. Marissa Loomis has grown used to fighting for herself and her family. The newcomers are a threat, but they can’t be left to die.

As the fragile society plans to grow by scavenging the deserted cities, newcomer Gwen finds herself torn between the man who saved her from starvation and the compelling woman who represents reason and power in what’s left of her world.

But what can Gwen make of the enforced secrecy about Loomis’s past, and the nightmares that erupt every night? Is there something worse than plague that has driven Loomis to the edge? Love, revenge, cruelty and honor swirl through this page-turning novel from the author of The Sanguire Series.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

the next big thing
This book is being published by Bella Books. It’ll be out January 15, 2013.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?

Years.

This is something that I started around 2007 or so. I ended up hitting a dead end about two thirds of the way through the book and set it aside. Eventually I worked out what the problem was, restructured the outline, and plowed back into the book.

Total writing time? Maybe about six months. It rarely takes me more than three or four months for a rough draft. The rest of the time is waiting for first reader response and editing.

What other books of the same genre would you compare yours with?

You know, I’m not sure. I don’t know that there are many post-apocalyptic lesbian romances out there. The only one I’ve read is After the Fall by Robin Summers, and it was fantastic!

Who or what inspired you to write this book?

For me, idea and inspiration are the same thing. This question was answered earlier when I brought up “The Tribe”.

the next big thing
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

If you like my previous books portraying crusty characters learning how to love themselves as well as others, you’ll like this one.

There’s angst, soul-searching, multiple culture clashes and the budding romance between two broken young women. A spurned lover and diminishing resources don’t make things easier, either.

Where should I go now?

I’ve tagged a few other writers to carry on the torch:

Beth Mitchum is a prolific writer, poet and musician who has published a number of lesbian romances. When not independently publishing her books, she’s the Editor in Chief for UltraViolet Love.

Thea van Diepen is a friend from Forward Motion, an online writing community. Her recent book, Dreaming of Her and Other Stories, is out on Kindle.

Oh! Last minute addition!! Robin Summers was kind enough to join the fun! I mentioned her novel, After The Fall earlier in this post. It’s a great post-apoc romance. Well worth the read!

Want a Free Copy?

What do you think about this post? I would love to hear from you! Click below and leave a comment…

Hey! Here’s a plan! I’ll give a way THREE copies of Orphan Maker by randomly selecting from the number of comments on this post! Sound like a plan? I’ll pick the three winners on Christmas Day!