OS: Welcome to Logan Meredith here today to share about Crossroads!
Hello and thanks to Open Skye Book Reviews for allowing me a chance to talk about my latest book, Crossroads. Crossroads is the newest release in the States of Love series by Dreamspinners Press. I’ve loved this series and am so pleased to be contributing the Indiana installment.
As a contemporary romance writer, I strive to make my characters and relationships feel real. One of my favorite parts of writing is developing my characters. I often spend many hours creating character sheets and back stories of my main characters so that I can judge their reactions and anticipate conflicts that might arise in their relationships. I’ve written characters who are based on actual people in my life but more often rely on research to bring authentic characters to life. Part of authentic characters is to make them less than perfect.
For example, one of my favorite traits to think about is how a character will handle conflict. This originated from a conversation I had with a friend. She said, “when I get aggravated, I’m a screamer, but if I stop talking, you know I’m really pissed.” Her partner was the opposite; they didn’t start yelling until they were furious. You can imagine how difficult it would be just to read the other’s person’s mood when trying to resolve a conflict in that relationship.
The old expression is “write what you know,” but I find that horribly dull. I love to explore characters have backgrounds vastly different than my own, whether it be a place of birth, gender, religion, race, ethnicity, or sexuality, I strive to make characters products of all these traits, rather than relying on stereotypes.
Both of my main characters in Crossroads had challenges. Marcus Light and Ethan Yoder are both millennials, which among other things, impacts how they view their careers, a central focus of the story. Marcus, who was raised in Indianapolis takes a very, “work hard, play hard” approach, while Ethan, was raised on a farm in a small-town. Ethan’s still has a common millennial outlook. For example, he places a high importance on his job satisfaction and expects to be rewarded for his efforts, but his upbringing makes his work ethic more, “work hard, play later.” I found it challenging to represent this generation to a Gen X reader and not have the characters feel entitled or lazy.
Another fun test from Crossroads was Marcus’s sexuality. I’ve written gay, straight, and bisexual characters, but Marcus is my first asexual character. I relied heavily on YouTube videos and the Asexual Visibility and Education Network (AVEN) to develop Marcus. There were many decisions to make. Was he sex adverse? Was he just asexual or also aromantic? Did he experience no sexual attraction at all or did he experience sexual attraction under certain circumstances? Part of Marcus’s story is his confusion as to his actual label so he couldn’t fit too neatly into any one box. My hope is for readers to share in Marcus’s confusion without feeling like his version of asexual isn’t as valid as a more stereotypical representation.
Ultimately the fun of character development in romance is creating two characters who are themselves full of flaws but are always perfect for each other.
Release Date: January 5, 2018
Blurb: Despite the best-laid plans, life sometimes has other ideas.
Ethan Yoder has toiled to escape his small-minded farming community, and he’s finally earned his degree and made it to Indianapolis—where he lands a job at a pharmaceutical company and meets handsome and successful Marcus. Marcus introduces Ethan to the fun-filled life of his dreams—fancy dinners, courtside seats at NBA games, even a trip to the Indianapolis 500. But Marcus’s happy-go-lucky veneer hides a man frustrated with a job he hates and his failure at romance due to factors he’s only beginning to understand. Ethan still has his eyes on the prize—a lucrative career—and he must figure out how to hold on to one opportunity without letting another slip away. If he and Marcus can come to a deeper understanding, their road might lead to a happily ever after.
States of Love: Stories of love that span every corner of the United States.
About the Author
Logan Meredith began writing as a teenager when beautiful boys started keeping her company at night. Unfortunately, the voices she heard were imaginary, and their conversations resulted in horrible insomnia. They only let her sleep when she started to type their words down. Thankfully, being awkward as hell and a head taller than anyone else in the school afforded plenty of spare time for writing.
At first she tried to make them play with characters from her favorite television series or books. She found her lost tribe with a ravenous, crazy group of fan-fiction lovers online and started sharing her stories publicly. Then something amazing happened—new characters arrived and demanded their own stories. Only they wanted their own world to play in and they wanted to find their true loves. So, between her day job and making time for her family, she tries to keep up with the demands from her beautiful men for their happily ever afters.
A native of San Antonio, Texas, and a graduate of the University of Texas-San Antonio, Logan is an accomplished cross-country mover, having honed her skills bouncing between five states. She currently resides in Houston, Texas. In addition to writing, she spends her time reading and rereading her favorite books, cheering for the San Antonio Spurs, playing Words with Friends, and procrastinating pretty much everything else.
Logan is a proud member of the LGBTQA community and vocal advocate for mental health awareness, suicide prevention, and equality campaigns.
Logan welcomes the chance to interact with readers.