LOVE BEYOND THE STARS
By Kaylan Doyle
Two days ago, my best friend (of twenty-six years) finished my Sci Fi novel, SURVIVORS’ DREAMS, and paid me the ultimate compliment. She said I made her laugh, I made her cry, she fell in love with the characters, lusted for hunky Razr and didn’t want the book to end. Then she said something else, a bit more disconcerting. “Kaylan, I’ve known you forever, thought I knew you well. Where in the heck does this stuff come from?” It gave me pause. It made me think. Did I even know?
I was the girl at slumber parties who told the bloody ghost stories that sent other kids screaming for the house and the safety of the adults. For me, I’ve always been more interested in fantasy, outer space, aliens, supernatural powers and strength than the ordinary life I lead. Through those stories, I could become the characters, if only in my mind. Because I love the places (and still do) the genres took me, my non-business writing has always centered primarily on the fantastic. It seems to be in my DNA.
It’s not just the science fiction, I have two more novels coming out later this year, both set on Earth – one an urban fantasy and the other a dystopian adventure caused by a natural disaster.
I believe the two prime drivers for people (and thus story characters) are the emotions of love and hate. In the name of these things the most wonderful and the most awful acts are committed. Selfless sacrifice or selfish atrocities occur. Why then would my aliens, since their ancestors emigrated Earth several millenia ago, not possess all our good and bad traits? Their relationships are as complex and twisty as those we wrestle with in our own lives. My otherworldly animals also exhibit behaviors found in our beloved pets or in Earth’s wild creatures. These things simply happen elsewhere, on another world, in another galaxy.
So back to my friend’s original question, “Where did SURVIVORS’ DREAMS come from?”
One morning, at 3am, Rak’khiel (Kel) and Helrazr (Razr) shimmered into my mind, morphous and teasing. Human-yet-not, whispering a story they wanted told.
My chilly dark house made my bed too attractive to leave. My response was a grumpy, “Oh please, not right now.” But they demanded and sleep eluded. I got up and began to scribe their words.
“We have problems,” they said. “We’re lost, perhaps the last of our kind, in another galaxy – alone, without a way home. You must help us solve our problems.” And one step, one piece at a time, together, we did.
As with life, along their journeys, every character in SURVIVORS’ DREAMS struggled with losses – family, friends and even their homeworld. Their differences created mistrust, desire, jealousy, anger, erroneous assumptions and a struggle to make sense of their dire situation. But as we messy humans do, and Kel and Razr’s ancestors were Terran, a way is found to co-exist and cooperate. To work together toward a common goal. Survival is a powerful motivator.
The majority of my stories begin this way – with my subconscious playing the “what if?” game while I’m sleeping. The pressure of the words building behind my eyes, behind my closed lips, sends me to a legal pad, to my netbook or a combination of the two. I’d like to say I have a plot, a well-crafted outline – actually I often do. Instead my characters, the story lines simply go where they will. I often know (or think I do) what I want to happen.By this time, they have become real to me. Because they live in my mind, they are more stubborn than I, and they always win. This is as it should be, because it is their story after all – it will be told in their own time, and in their own way. And, I confess, they are always right – it’s always a much better book for my having listened.
I do hope you will enjoy this adventure, and my other novels as much as I love creating them. I’d be delighted to receive your comments.
Kaylan Doyle’s debut novel, SURVIVORS’ DREAMS, is available through Amazon (print and ebook), ebook also available through Barnes and Noble, Sony, Apple, iTunes. She’d love it if you liked her Facebook Author Page.
AUTHOR BIO: Kaylan Doyle lives in the Pacific Northwest. She enjoys spoiling her husband and two wonderful cats. She loves Coen Brothers and Quentin Tarantino movies, lifting weights, watching football, and reading in all genres.