Raven Takes a Pearl
Fantasies in Color
Sharon Lynn Fisher
Genre: Steampunk Erotica (BDSM)
Publisher: West 26th Street Press
Date of Publication: Oct. 29, 2014
Number of pages: 45
Word Count: 12,000
Cover Artist: Rafido
Second novelette in the Fantasies in Color series by RWA RITA-nominated author Sharon Lynn Fisher ...
Pearl knows it was Raven who stole her mama's heart -- a beautiful quartz stone given to her by Pearl's father right before he died. She sets off alone to the crow-man's keep determined to bring back the stone, but she's caught by a servant and taken to the tower.
The dark-winged ruler of the keep isn't at all what she imagined, and he isn't about to let Pearl go before unlocking all her mysteries -- mysteries she never dreamed her body possessed.
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About the Author:
An RWA RITA Award finalist and a three-time RWA Golden Heart Award finalist, Sharon Lynn Fisher writes stories for the geeky at heart — meaty mash-ups of sci-fi, suspense, and romance, with no apology for the latter. She lives where it rains nine months of the year. And she has a strange obsession with gingers (down to her freaky orange cat). In addition to her erotica stories, she’s authored three science fiction romance novels for Tor Books: Ghost Planet (2012), The Ophelia Prophecy (2014), and Echo 8 (2015).
How did you come up with the title?
That's a great question, as this story was different for me, process-wise. Usually I come up with story titles before everything else, and the whole story sort of unpacks from that. But in this case I was well into the story before I started working on the title. I wanted something that would hint at both the fantasy/steampunk aspect and the bondage element. The original title was "Raven Binds the Maiden." I chose RAVEN TAKES A PEARL because of the fun double-meaning (I won't spoil by explaining!).
What are some of the references that you used while researching this book?
Part of the inspiration for this story came from a book I'm reading on mythology, TRICKSTER MAKES THIS WORLD, by Lewis Hyde. According to Hyde, when the trickster figure (Raven, Coyote, Loki, etc.) enters the picture, everything changes. That's certainly true in the case of Master Raven!
I also looked at pages of Google images to find inspiration for dressing my steampunk heroine. That was tons of fun!
What do you think most characterizes your writing?
Probably that I almost always include some geeky aspect. In RAVEN, the hero is an inventor and a tinkerer, and really a geek at heart. I also typically explore the question of what it means to be human via characters that are marginalized due to being only partly human. Almost all the stories I've written include these elements.
What was the hardest part of writing this book?
Honestly this story was like butter. I have no idea why. It was just one of those stories that rushed right out of me. And that is definitely not true of all of them. But these two main characters really sprang fully formed from my mind. The setting, too, is incredibly vivid — like a place I've been before. In a way I have, because RAVEN is sort of a dark sister to a sweet steampunk romance I wrote, A HEART FOR COPPER (a CYOA type story on SilkWords.com). They are set in the same world, and both have an inventor hero and share the theme of awakening.
What did you enjoy most about writing this book?
I think the steampunk and fantasy elements. I've always been (probably always will be) a speculative fiction writer, and I LOVE world building. Loved creating visuals of both Pearl's world and Raven's keep. I also really loved finding Pearl's voice. It's very different from other heroines I've written.
Do you have a specific writing style?
Hmm, I'm not sure! Normally I'd answer this question with something like I did in the question above ("what characterizes your writing"). Since I already said all that, I guess I'd just add that my critique partner says I'm the master of the twisty plot. I quite like that!
What are your current projects?
My next release is my third book from Tor, ECHO 8 (). It's a sort of paranormal, suspense, sci-fi mashup (with a love triangle!). I also have an in-progress novella on Wattpad — RED: LOVE IN THE TIME OF FLESH-EATERS (free read). Finally, I hope to be starting my third novelette in this series very soon! In my day job I'm editorial director for (and a partner in) SilkWords.com, an interactive romance and erotica publisher.
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
When I write I'm thinking first and foremost about entertaining readers, but larger themes do tend to creep in. This one definitely explores what it means to be human, as well as the theme of awakening. Pearl's awakening is sexual on the surface (it's erotica after all), but on a deeper level it's about finding the courage to leave our safe place and discover who we really are.
Visit her at www.sharonlynnfisher.com
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