I have a confession to make. I grew up reading science fiction and fantasy and I honestly didn’t see the difference. From Dragonlance, to Justine Dare, Robert Asprin, to Eve and Rourke, I loved it all. They both had amazing worlds, fierce battles, the hero’s (and heroine’s!) journey. Who cared whether the characters were aliens or elves?
Then I started writing my first novel-length romance and suddenly, I cared.
Aliens. Definitely aliens.
And slick machines, clean and modern cities, intricate government and societal structures with plenty of intrigue to explore—the whole universe was mine to command. There’s something about telling a story that could potentially happen. Way, way, way in the future, of course. But science fiction of yesterday is science fact of today. Fictional technology is often (loosely) based on what exists in reality, just with more bells and whistles. It’s not a stretch to envision a human colony on Mars one day, whereas shape-shifters…not so much.
It’s not that I don’t like paranormal or fantasy elements. I just can’t explain them. My story brain wants to connect all the dots, and come up with logic to demonstrate how these seemingly fantastic feats like space travel and miracle technology occur.
Harry Potter uses Floo powder to travel; my people use ion drives in their starships. Ions are real. Floo powder is not. 🙂
This same drive to explain things is how MINDLINK, my April Carina Press release, was conceived. I watch a lot of Discovery and History channel after the kids go to bed and I’ve got a weird obsession with Ancient Aliens, which attempts to prove aliens are responsible for historical human accomplishments. I don’t believe any of it. After all, the people who made science fiction into science fact share the same DNA as those who created Machu Picchu and had names like Da Vinci and Galileo. I refuse to give credit for humanity’s greatest contributions to a bunch of little green men.
But it does make my brain go, hmm.
So what if the real story is the reverse? Aliens are so impressed by human achievement they want a couple of their own. And devise a way to get some via a list of volunteers presented to Earth’s leaders under the guise of an invitation to participate in the first human-alien universal summit.
That’s the premise of MINDLINK. I take that all the way to the end, when the aliens uncover secrets about their own historical accomplishments.
I’m not going to spoil the ending. Oh, wait, yes I am. The hero and heroine live happily ever after because at the end of the day, that’s the story I wanted to tell. Human, alien or elf, love is what makes the universe go round.
So…what about you? Elves or aliens?
Determined to revitalize her imploding career, blacklisted movie star Ashley V takes on her biggest role yet: posing as one of ten scientists invited by aliens to a universal summit. But when the aliens seize, strip and implant the entire delegation to extract their knowledge, she is quickly found out and sent to a cell to await recycling.
The alien research director designated ZXQ-One devised a plan to let the humans volunteer their best and brightest in a gamble to solve his people’s energy crisis. But he fails to find anything useful and winds up imprisoned alongside the fiery human woman who refuses to give up, and who insists on calling him Sam.
After an accidental link between their implants lets them share their thoughts, they find themselves drawn to each other. Sam will have to trust in her human compassion and forgiveness for his role in her capture, and Ashley will have to trust him with her deepest secrets if they are to have any chance at survival…
2011 Harlequin SYTYCW Winner | 2012 RWA® Golden Heart® finalist