Skythane; by J. Scott Coatsworth—New Release Blog Tour
I probably say this every time I talk about Scott, but he is a driving force in the effort to bring Queer Sci-Fi and Fantasy to the world. To date most of his efforts have been to create a platform and give authors a voice. He’s written some very good short stories, but we’ve been waiting for his coming out party. And the wait is over.
Skythane is Scott’s first full length novel and it is the first in the series. So with that, I’ll turn it over to Scott:
Feet in Two Camps
When I was growing up, I was a voracious reader, tearing my way through my mon’s bookshelf of sci fi and fantasy. My formative years were, in large part, spent on Pern and Trantor and Rama and Middle Earth and Xanth. I was a solitary child. 😛
When I was growing up, though, there was a dearth of positive portrayals of gay men, both in popular culture and in real life. I remember the ones I was aware of at the time very clearly:
—The gay couple who lived down the street, whom no one talked to
—The guy on the TV show Brothers who was really nelly gay
—A made for TV movie about a teen who came out, gave his father a heart attack and got sent to reparative therapy by his mother
—The trilogy “The Chronicles of Tornor”, by Elizabeth A. Lynn
It was the last one that sparked my interest in merging my desire to write sci fi and fantasy with who I really was. I remember when I first read “The Dancers of Arun” and got to the sex scene. Even though it was fade to black, it made my heart sing!
It would be years, though, before I would come out and make it possible to write like that.
I came out to my friends and family in the early nineties, and the original few scenes of Skythane were written shortly thereafter, but it wasn’t until a couple years ago that I pulled that old story idea out of its folder to finish it, and ultimately to submit it for publication.
In the end, I figured out that I’m really happy writing all kinds of sci fi, from full-on romantic to mainstream.
It’s kind of fun having a foot in each camp.
My new novel, Skythane, is just out – and it combines my love of sci fi and secret reveals and MM romance. I hope you enjoy it!
Skythane; by J. Scott Coatsworth
Jameson Havercamp, a psych from a conservative religious colony, has come to Oberon—unique among the Common Worlds—in search of a rare substance called pith. He’s guided through the wilds on his quest by Xander Kinnison, a handsome, cocky wing man with a troubled past.
Neither knows that Oberon is facing imminent destruction. Even as the world starts to fall apart around them, they have no idea what’s coming—or the bond that will develop between them as they race to avert a cataclysm.
Together, they will journey to uncover the secrets of this strange and singular world, even as it takes them beyond the bounds of reality itself to discover what truly binds them together.
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Anne Caine
Release Date: 2/17/17
Rain hit the plas and ran downward in little rivulets, separating and rejoining like branches of time as the storm whipped itself into a frenzy over Oberon City.
Xander Kinnson lay on his bed, head thrown back, watching the tempest with a laziness that belied his inner turmoil and pain. Alix had left him and gone missing. A year had passed, and still he had a hard time accepting that simple fact.
His dark wings with their jet-black feathers were stretched out lazily to each side of his supine form, their tips extending past the edge of the bed. His chest heaved slowly up and down, and he breathed easily, as if he were utterly relaxed.
Nothing could have been further from the truth. Below the surface, under the deception of skin and sinew, his heart beat at a thunderous pace, and his mind raced for answers to Alix’s fate that slipped beyond his grasp.
The handsome trick he’d brought home rested his warm hands on Xander’s thighs, his hot mouth engaged elsewhere. Xander smelled the deep, masculine musk of him, slipping a hand absently through the man’s dark, tousled hair as the rain increased to a thundering downpour against the plas. The drops glistened, each an individual universe of shimmering light before running quickly out of sight.
A flash of lightning illuminated the room, thunder indicating how close it had been. As the heavy rain pounded against the arco’s walls, Xander rode the wave of pleasure higher and higher. Despite himself, he rose quickly toward climax, drawn up on the tide as the trick worked his cock. Unable to stop himself, he thrust his hips almost angrily upward into the man’s willing throat. Closer, closer….
He reached the crest, a pleasure so intense it burned through him like phosphorous, a white-hot fire.
Lightning flared again across the wet, black sky, followed by thunder so close it shook the bed. The storm had reached a fever pitch outside, and he arched his back in the air one more time, his wings rustling beneath him. As if in concert with the storm, Xander came, the release of his orgasm radiating from his hips along his spinal cord and down through his toes and the tips of his wings.
The rush of elation washed away his cares for a few brief moments. Xander shuddered, shivered, and shuddered again, and it was over.
For a while, he drifted in an oblivion that was blessed in its emptiness. The rain fell in a steady beat against the window, and he forgot to wallow in his pain. His mind floated free, with no responsibilities, nothing to worry about for those brief moments between sex and real life. This was what he needed. This lack of thought, this pleasurable oblivion where he could just be.
When he opened his eyes at last, the nameless trick was staring down at him, expectant.
“You’re still here.”
“I can do more, if you’d like,” the man said with a grin. Like Alix, he had no wings—a lander man.
Xander glared at him, annoyed. He was handsome enough, tall, dark-haired, with blue eyes and a light complexion. Strangely, he reminded Xander of Alix. The hair and eyes were wrong, but there was something about him, and that annoyed the hell out of Xander, for reasons he didn’t care to examine too closely. “Get out,” he said with a dismissive wave.
The man frowned. “I thought—”
“Oh right, your pay.” Xander took the man’s arm and slitted him a hundred crits from the wrist reader embedded in his own. Then he waved the trick away. “We’re square. Now get the fuck out of my flat.”
The man gathered his own clothes, but Xander didn’t give him time to put them on. Instead he hustled the trick out of the irising door, palming it closed on his hurt and angry expression.
I really have become a bastard, he thought, staring at his dim reflection in the shiny black door. It had been a long year.
He tapped the cirq in his temple with his left hand, and called out to his PA. “Ravi, any messages for me?”
About the Author:
Scott has been writing since elementary school, when he and won a University of Arizona writing contest in 4th grade for his first sci fi story (with illustrations!). He finished his first novel in his mid twenties, but after seeing it rejected by ten publishers, he gave up on writing for a while.
Over the ensuing years, he came back to it periodically, but it never stuck. Then one day, he was complaining to Mark, his husband, early last year about how he had been derailed yet again by the death of a family member, and Mark said to him “the only one stopping you from writing is you.”
Since then, Scott has gone back to writing in a big way. He has sold more than a dozen short stories – some new, some that he had started years before. He is currently working on two sci fi trilogies, and also runs the Queer Sci Fi (http://www.queerscifi.com) site, a group for readers and writers of gay sci fi, fantasy, and paranormal fiction.