Welcome to the wide crazy world of TJ Klune
As you can see, this is a blog (a blog, you say? You're like the only person in the world that has one!). Here are my promises to you: I promise to up date this as much as I can. I promise that at some point, you will most likely be offended. I promise you may suffer from the affliction the Klunatics know as Wookie Cry Face. I also promise to make this some place where you can see how my mind works.
You've been warned.
You've been warned.
Saturday, March 26, 2016
What's Next; Or, How I'm About To Go Dark
Can we all agree that I know comedy?
That's not meant to sound like I'm bragging. It's really not. I can be funny. I can write funny stories. I have an ear for whip crack dialogue and snark. I like it. I like being able to make people laugh. I love having people feel the warm fuzzies when they read my books.
The last three books I've released were part of what I considered to be my "Happiness Trilogy." The Lightning Struck-Heart, How to Be a Normal Person, and The Queen & the Homo Jock King were all exactly what I needed at the time. I needed to find a reason to laugh again, to find a reason to feel good about my writing again. And what better way than to feel good than by doing something I was good at?
I am good at comedy.
Which is why I had three comedic books in a row come out.
They are safe, because I know people like my sense of humor. There's really little risk involved, especially when Queen was a sequel to one of my biggest sellers, and Lightning had a gay sassy unicorn. Normal was probably riskier than the other two, given that it dealt with asexuality, something that I was surprised to find not a lot of people had heard of before.
Regardless, they were safe. I was safe.
But that's over now.
My next four books are decidedly not comedies. Oh, sure, they have comedic touches to them, but comedy is not the focal point of the books. Yes, they are all romances, but I went in a different direction.
Some of my readers, especially the newer ones, probably don't know that I can go dark when I need to. It's been almost years since I've released anything that wasn't tonally comedic or family angst. In 2013, I released Into This River I Drown, which would go onto win the Lambda Literary Award for best gay romance the following year. A little after that, John & Jackie was released as part of anthology, and then again on its own two years ago.
Comedy comes easy for me. And I'm sure I could safely rest in a little comedic nest and write nothing but and be okay with it.
The problem with that is that I never want to be just okay with something. Writing is about growth and maturity. I always want to find ways to stretch the boundaries of what I'm capable of. I don't want to write just comedy because after a while, I'd get bored of it. And lazy which, in my opinion, is the worst thing a writer could become. When an author doesn't take chances with the types of stories they write, they run the risk of phoning it in. Readers can tell that shit, and I don't ever want to be accused of being a lazy writer.
Withered + Sere and Crisped + Sere are the results of that need, that desire to expand on what I'm capable of. Originally written as one story, it became too big for a single novel, which is why I split it into two. These books are a romance, but it is a slow burn (shocker, I know, coming from me), so it will be spread out over two books. In fact, the plan there is to have four books altogether, so it will continue on in them as well. I want to keep as much as I can under wraps about these books, but I will say that W+S and C+S comprise a beginning, middle, and end. There is resolution reached. It comes out April 19th. Book II resolves most everything in Book I and comes out in August. Promotion for this is going to kick off starting in the next week or two, so look forward to that.
(also, both these books are illustrated, and Jesus Fucking Christ, are the illustrations amazing.)
Wolfsong comes out June 20th and just might be the angstiest thing I've ever written (and yeah, I realize that I am the author of the BOATK books and River, so take that for what it is). It also happens to be about werewolves. I don't even know. One day, I sat down at my computer and thought, huh, what subgenre could I try next? Then I started writing, and by the time I'd finished, I'd somehow come up with a decade spanning novel of love and loss, of betrayal and heartbreak. And werewolves (still not sure how that part came to be). It's the story of Ox and Joe, but it also is about family and the choices we make, and how far we go to protect the ones we love. There will be so much Wookie Cry Face. I'm not even joking. You'll get your happy ending, but holy shit am I going to make you work for it.
And then in October (maybe November?) is Murmuration. A murmuration is a flock of starlings that fly in these extraordinary clouds of thousands of birds, like this:
If you've never seen them in flight, I would recommend going to YouTube and looking it up. It's absolutely insane to see, and thematically, it represents what this novel is. I am going to keep as much of this book a secret as I can. Not because I'm a dick (well, maybe a bit of a dick,) but because I don't want any spoilers about this book to somehow get out. It's the most romantic thing I've written. It's also the most fucked up. By the end, I will have shattered your heart and put it back together, even though a few of the pieces might be missing.
And even Destiny of Dragons, the sequel to Lightning, isn't just a comedy. Sam, like my writing, needs to grow up. Lightning, to me, always had a razor's edge laying under the candy-pop Technicolor sunshine that was the world I'd created. It was sass and snark, but it always seemed just a hop, skip and jump away from becoming a little darker, which is what I tried to do with it. I could have easily just written another straight forward sequel to Lightning, but I think I owe you more than that.
I don't want to be a lazy writer.
I don't ever want to phone it in.
Which is why we're going into the dark now.
So I can show you what I'm capable of.
Don't worry, though.
It'll be all right.
Withered + Sere Pre-Order: Click Here!
Add on GR: Click Here!
Wolfsong on GR: Click Here!