We’re always listening out for great new fantasy romances around here, so when our good friend Daniel R. Marvello mentioned his new book First Moon, I knew my readers would be interested too. First Moon (The Ternion Order Book 1) released a few weeks ago and though it looks like a bit of a departure for him, I think you’ll find it interesting. So when I extended my invitation, he decided to tell us a little about the romantic thread to First Moon.
A Little Romance with Your Fantasy
When I set out to write fantasy adventure stories, adding romantic elements was not a high priority. Yet readers comment on the relationships between my male and female lead characters nearly as often as they do any other aspect of my stories. Apparently, I can’t help myself.
While I lay no claim to writing romantic fantasy, I do believe that every story (of any genre) benefits from including a little romance. As a reader, I don’t care much for obsessive swooning, but nothing does more to make a story a page-turner for me than putting a relationship or love interest at stake.
To one degree or another, all stories are about people and their relationships. But there’s a reason that romance is the biggest selling book genre: most of us enjoy a good love story, and most of us want a happy ending.
For me, a big part of character development is figuring out how the characters relate to each other. Their motivations often mesh in surprising ways. The result can become a rivalry, an opposition, or an attraction that affects how the story progresses.
At the same time, circumstance often has a big influence on how relationships develop between characters. In fact, I believe it should have a big influence, because characters who don’t react realistically to their circumstances don’t feel like real characters.
All of the romantic relationships (fictional or otherwise) I can think of depended upon circumstance. Or, as my wife often quotes, “geography is destiny.” Her use of that quote originally referred to a competition between a physically remote relationship and a nearby one, suggesting that the nearby relationship is more likely to win out. But it can also mean that putting two compatible people in close proximity to each other is likely to result in a connection.
Drawing from Reality
I’m a story planner, but I don’t plan down to the scene level. My stories evolve in many ways as I move my characters from one major story beat to the next. I know where everyone is going, but the details of how they get there develop incrementally. In my stories, the romance subplot germinates from one of those details.
I often discover that some event from my own life or someone I know fits perfectly into the story. I modeled the marriage proposal in one of my books on my real-life proposal to my wife. (This anecdote will show you just how romantic I am not.)
Back in October of 1990, my girlfriend and I were driving to Yosemite for a several-day vacation. All of the deciduous trees were turning color and the lateness of the season meant we were virtually alone on the road. Driving up the curves toward the park was surreally beautiful. As I drove, I was thinking about how much I enjoyed spending time with the adorable woman who sat next to me. We had fun with each other all the time, and I wanted to keep doing things with her forever. It was in that moment that I knew I wanted to marry her. The connection from my brain to my mouth formed before I gave it much thought, and I declared my perfectly logical conclusion: “We should get married,” I said. “Okay,” was her answer. And that is the story of our oh-so-romantic betrothal.
I may not have set out to write romance into my books, but I’m glad things have worked out the way they have. Character development is not just about exploring the passions and motivations of a character in isolation, it’s about how characters with different (or similar) passions and motivations interact.
We humans influence one another. Our interactions drive our emotions, to both good and bad effect. My favorite stories acknowledge that and celebrate it. Relationships can take many forms, but I believe including a little romance makes the characters richer and the story more engaging.
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After being dumped by his fiancé, Kyle Nelson is ready for a rebound fling. But a one-night stand turns into a catastrophe that leaves Kyle with violent dreams and disturbing physical symptoms.
Kyle is approached by an attractive witch named Amanda who tries to convince him that he is in danger of turning into a werewolf and that his only hope for a cure lies with her secret society, the Ternion Order.
Initially writing Amanda off as a lunatic, Kyle reconsiders her offer after he attracts the attention of the local pack and learns that his fate will be sealed on the next full moon.
First Moon is a contemporary fantasy adventure of approximately 78,000 words.
You can get First Moon at these retailers:
Thanks for this glimpse into your new series, Daniel! We look forward to reading it, and wish you all the best with it!
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Daniel R. Marvello Biography
Daniel R. Marvello writes magical fantasy adventure stories. He lives deep in the forest of the North Idaho panhandle with his wife of 20+ years and a small collection of wonderful pets. His professional background is in database and software development as well as technical writing.
Daniel’s fiction writing was inspired by his love for reading magical fantasy and his years of enjoying fantasy role-playing games. His fiction works include The Vaetra Chronicles, a high fantasy adventure trilogy, and The Ternion Order, a contemporary paranormal fantasy series.
To learn more about Daniel and his Vaetra Chronicles and The Ternion Order, see his website at: http://www.danielrmarvello.com/
You can also follow him on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DanielRMarvello
and Twitter: https://twitter.com/DanielRMarvello
or add First Moon to your Good Reads TBR lists, here.