K.Z. Snow is probably the most loyal follower of this site as she and I hooked up (no, you pervs, not in that way) 😆 when I opened my blog almost 6 years ago. To say that the blog was obscure would be an understatement, and she tried to cheer me up by saying shit like “If you build it, they will come” 🙂 or words to that effect.She was so insistent I almost believed her … but it turns out she was right.
K.Z writes books that are outside the norm of M/M which means that her stories will stand the test of time because they aren’t fluff – they entice the readers into her worlds and make us wonder at her imagination. Her stories have actual plots (imagine that!), her characters are nuanced and three dimensional, and her writing is difficult to categorize which is the best thing I can say about an author. You never get the same old tropes written in the same way from her; if it’s a well-known trope she gives it a totally different twist. She’s brilliant and I hope that those readers who haven’t discovered her genius and don’t yet see what I see in her writing will give it a second and even third look, because it’s definitely not the same old same old.
As a parting gift to M/M readers I wanted to do this profile so that those of you who are unaware of this author’s books will have a wonderful treasure trove of new stories to plunder. 🙂
Here, in her own words, is K.Z. Snow
Many bittersweet thanks to Wave for inviting me here. I know this is a helluva month for her. But Wave and I go back a ways, so she’s nice to me. 😀 (Actually, she’s nice to me because she’s an incredibly loyal and giving lady.)
Many of you are probably asking yourselves, Who the hell is this person? I don’t blame you. I’ve never been The Next Big Thing and I’m not insanely-prolific. But I’ve been published in the genre for quite a few years, primarily through Loose Id, Dreamspinner Press, and Liquid Silver Books. Most recently, I was a contributor (what an honor!) to Josh Lanyon’s excellent guide, Man, Oh Man: Writing Quality M/M Fiction.
Before I eased my way into this niche, I wrote other stuff, from poetry to mainstream novels to m/f romances, with varying degrees of success. I also worked as an editor at two brick-and-mortar publishing houses. And before that? Well, let’s concentrate on my qualifications for conducting the interview below.
I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time acquainting myself with dicks—the good, the bad, and the ugly. To borrow and rewrite a few lines from Spill the Wine by Eric Burdon & War, I’ve known big ones, tall ones, fat ones, small ones. Limp ones, stiff ones. Even crazy gay ones.
Don’t scoff. It’s been a labor of love. I’ve literally lost sleep over it.
After countless years of playing with, pondering, and envying this part of the male anatomy—and trying not to become impregnated by it, ‘cause dicks are sneaky that way—I realized I’d never taken the time to sit down and actually talk to a dick (except the two-legged kind, and those conversations are hardly worth recounting). That’s how the interview below came about. I hooked met up with two loquacious dicks, Leroy (cut) and John Thomas (uncut), and let them run off at the mouth … so to speak.
Dueling Penises – an interview by K.Z. Snow
Thank you all for your kind attention. As a show of gratitude, I’ll share an invaluable lesson I’ve learned on my long journey from full obscurity to partial obscurity.
Dicks come and go, but books stay with you forever.
KZ’s novel The Zero Knot won a second-place Rainbow Award last year in the Young Adult/Coming of Age category. Her novella Xylophone was a genre Top Pick at All Romance eBooks earlier this year and is currently a finalist in the Eppies (winners TBA).
To give you a sense of her writing here is a short list of K.Z. Snow’s books:
A Story in the Mongrel Series
Hunzinger’s Mechanical Circus, a rollicking seaside carnival where imagination meets machinery, shines as the only bright spot in the dreary city of Purinton. A shadow is cast there one day when a tall, cloaked figure approaches the stand of Will Marchman, a young patent-medicine salesman. Fanule Perfidor, commonly known as the Dog King, isn’t welcome at the Circus. No resident of Taintwell is; they’re all Branded Mongrels, officially shunned. But Will is beguiled by the stunning, mysterious Perfidor. Their mutual wariness soon gives way to desire, and a bond forms.
Soon the naive but plucky pitchman becomes embroiled in a dangerous quest. Fanule suspects Alphonse Hunzinger and Purinton’s civic leaders are responsible for the disappearance or incarceration of countless Branded Mongrels. But why? As Will’s passion and regard for his tormented lover grow, he’s determined to help Fanule get answers and prevent any further persecution… or worse. They just have to stay together—and stay alive long enough—to see their plan through.
A Story in the Mongrel Series
When vampire Clancy Marrowbone returns to Purin province after nearly two years, he intends only to visit with his dear friend, Fanule Perfidor, and find out how his former lover, the mortal Simon Bentcross, is faring. But two developments change Marrowbone’s itinerary: the appearance of a drastically altered man from his past, and the reawakening of his passion for Simon.
Both of these unexpected reunions become increasingly complicated. The connection between Simon’s new creation, a bathysphere-like submersible, and a clandestine underwater-research project results in Marrowbone and Bentcross becoming hunted men. But sometimes, it takes danger to make a star-crossed affair seem worth saving.
Daren Boothe’s most significant secret centers on an unlikely object: a xylophone. That secret led him to develop his professional alter-ego, a sensual, androgynous dancer. When Dare begins his second (and considerably more wholesome) job playing clarinet in a polka band, he meets a young man who takes his grandmother out dancing. But Dare knows the man has his own secret.
Jonah Day immediately recognizes the clarinetist. Three years earlier they crossed paths in a therapist’s office, but they both abandoned that route to mental health. Neither was ready then to open up about the psychological traumas that haunted them.
In an attempt to heal their wounds, Dare and Jonah turn to each other. Understanding and empathy come instantly, accompanied by ambivalence about their growing attraction. But the repercussions of victimization are many. Soon, the very experiences Dare and Jonah share threaten to drive them apart.
Eighteen-year-old Jess Bonner is casting off pretense—and, with it, some friends from his past who aren’t particularly trustworthy. In just a few months he’ll be starting college, and it’s time for him to admit the truth: he’s gay, not bi, and only one of his old friends holds any kind of real interest for him. When Dylan Finch, aka Mig, follows his lead and puts some distance between himself and the old crowd, he and Jess give in to a mutual attraction that’s been building for years.
But navigating a fledgling relationship isn’t easy for beginners, and forces they can’t seem to control keep tripping them up: sexual appetite, personal insecurities, fear of discovery, and more. They need clarity. They need courage. Just as they’re on the verge of finding both, a vindictive act of jealousy sends one of them to jail. All their hard-won victories are in danger of falling to dust. And the only way to save what they have is to recognize it for what it is… and fight for its integrity.
Second Place: Best LGBT Young Adult / Coming of Age
Machine, the final novel in the fantasy-steampunk Mongrel trilogy, will be released by Dreamspinner in the spring. KZ’s new work-in-progress is a contemporary story of personal education (what in German, and snooty academic circles, is called a Bildungsroman). Titled Resurrection Men, it’s about an on-again, off-again homeless youth named Elijah whose boyfriend was the victim of a drive-by shooting. To fulfill a promise he’d made, Elijah is looking after his boyfriend’s Black stepfather, also homeless, while trying to pull his own life together.
K.Z. Snow’s contact Information