Interview with Author KD Edwards

KD Edwards, author

K.D. Edwards lives and writes in North Carolina, but has spent time in Massachusetts, Maine, Colorado, New Hampshire, Montana, and Washington. (Common theme until NC: Snow. So, so much snow.)

Mercifully short careers in food service, interactive television, corporate banking, retail management, and bariatric furniture has led to a much less short career in Higher Education.

The first book in his urban fantasy series THE TAROT SEQUENCE, called THE LAST SUN, was published by Pyr in June 2018. The third installment, THE HOURGLASS THRONE, is expected in May 2022.

K.D. is represented by Sara Megibow at kt literary, and Kim Yau at Echo Lake Entertainment for media rights.

First of all, welcome to Geeks OUT! Could you tell us a little about yourself?

Of course! I’m the author of The Tarot Sequence series, an urban fantasy that reimagines a modern world with a very real Atlantis. The series is built around several broad concepts: LGBT+ inclusion, found family, humor, tarot card imagery, a lack of toxic masculinity, and lots of immersive world-building in a society that blends science fiction and fantasy.

Congratulations on your upcoming book, The Hourglass Throne! Could you tell us what it’s about and where the idea for the book came from?

It’s the third book in a continuous series and is being released May 17, 2022 – I actually have nine planned books (three trilogies). My largest motivation for the series was to create a wildly different type of society free from many of the biases in our own culture. There is no “gay” or “straight” – Atlanteans operate on a very broad spectrum of gender and sexuality. I wanted to tell a story that honors urban fantasy greats – like Ilona Andrews, Patricia Briggs, Jim Butcher – while also featuring a cast of characters that I would have wanted to read as a young gay man.

As a writer, what drew you to writing fiction/fantasy?

I read SFF almost exclusively as a teen, and then moved away from it in my 20s and 30s. When I hit 40, I decided the world…. Well, the world kind of sucks at times. So I turned my back on contemporary fiction and dove whole-heartedly into escapism. I want people to ENJOY these books, and escape from the grind of doom scrolling. I want people to laugh, and care about the characters, and get lost in the wonder of this city I’m creating – a city built from teleported human ruins from across the world. I love that element of SFF. It can be uplifting, and can present a World we deserve. 

Since Geeks OUT is a queer centered website, could you tell us a bit about the LGBTQ+ characters featured in your books?

In the beginning, I thought I was something special for having a book with a lot of gay men. My readers – my very kind, awesome readers – disabused me of that. Since then, I’ve taken it as a point of pride to really explore the depth of the queer community. My main character, Rune, is demisexual, and in a relationship with a man. Quinn is Asexual. Layne, who was introduced as a 15-year old male teen, now identifies as gender fluid and uses “they/them” pronouns. One of my newest central characters, Lady Death, has had relationships with women in the past. I’m only getting started, too.

Were there any books or authors that touched you or inspired you growing up? 

I have a complicated relationship with the books I read growing up. The SFF was so important to my development but, looking back, I can see how homogenous the material was. And how male. It’s so powerfully obvious that those stories lacked diversity. Some of those series I cannot even talk about – especially the ones where the hero’s journey is built on raping others or violence against women. 

The urban fantasy stories I read as a young adult fare better. JD Robb’s In Death series; Patricia Briggs’ Mercy Thompson; Ilona Andrews’ Kate Daniels…. I really adored a lot of the early urban fantasies. 

Where did you get your start in creative writing? What pulled you to fiction?

I can’t even remember a time I didn’t want to be a writer. Ever. I think the ability to escape this world and live in another has always been the draw, for me.

What’s something you haven’t done as a writer that you’d like to do?

One of the ways I manage a 9-book series is having huge, tent pole ideas for each book. That satisfies my craving for different sub-genres within SFF. For instance, I’ll have my Natural Disaster novel. I’ll have my Kaiju novel. I’ll have my Roadtrip novel. 

But given the constraints of the series I built, there are still stories I wish I could tell. I want to write a space station book. I want to write a post-apocalyptic tale….

What inspired you to incorporate Tarot cards and it’s mythology into your stories?

My own writing has always involved archetypes. I’ve been working on Tarot Sequence for close to 10 years, but the archetypes of Rune and Brand pre-date that by many years. That’s what I love about tarot cards – they’re built on human archetypes and appetites, like Love, Fortune, Nature, Death. My focus is on the major arcana cards, in particular. Given the unique identity of each major arcana card, it seemed like a good idea to build a nobility system around it. My main character, Rune, is the sole remaining heir to the fallen Sun Throne. These novels represent his journey in reclaiming his birthright.

Your last short story collection placed your characters into the COVID pandemic and under lock down. How did your own experiences during that time inspire that work?

Oh my God, those stories SAVED ME. I was just as lost and scared as everyone else during the start of the Pandemic. Putting Rune and Brand through quarantine was my way of coping with it. And it snowballed from there – the response I got from readers also looking for a distraction, or meaning, was fantastic. So I decided to make the stories canon – and haven’t regretted it.

Aside from writing, what do you enjoy doing in your free time? 

The Pandemic has changed everything. I moved from a workplace-based day job to work-from-home status. (And I love it.) I also stopped reading books in favor of watching international TV. It really opened my eyes to how perspectives change globally. It expanded my tastes, and gave me new ideas and ideas. I really, really need to get back to reading – but the TV habit still persists for now.

What’s a question you haven’t been asked yet, but wish you were asked (as well as the answer to that question)? 

Hah! If you knew my readers, you’d know that there are very, very few unexplored questions. My readers are amazing, and supportive, and vocal. I am so freaking blessed. They exchange ideas with me, ask questions, make artwork, provide music recommendations… So I’m honestly at a loss at what question I haven’t been asked.

I suppose one question I don’t get often: The series is based in New Atlantis, formed after the fall of Atlantis during the Great Atlantean War. Every now and then a reader asks if I ever intend to take the story back to the abandoned homeland. And the answer? Oh yes.

Finally, what LGBTQ books/authors would you recommend to the readers of Geeks OUT?

I am really loving David Slayton’s Adam Binder series. TJ Klune is one of my favorites. Lynn Flewelling’s Nightrunner books. Gideon the Ninth is magnificent. I know I’ll regret not spending more time on this list….so many suggestions that they bottle-neck in my brain. Oh! Hero by the late Perry Moore remains hugely influential for me. Gregory Ashe is a prolific sci-fi and mystery writer, and I love his Hollow Folk series.

The Geeks OUT Podcast: Disney Gay for Pay

The Geeks OUT Podcast

Opinions, reviews, incisive discussions of queer geek ideas in pop culture, and the particularly cutting brand of shade that you can only get from a couple of queer geeks all in highly digestible weekly doses.

After a little break, the Geeks OUT Podcast returns with Kevin and Jon Shutt, as they discuss Jamie Lee Curtis officiating her trans daughter’s wedding in cosplay, the trailers for Roar and Men, and celebrate the queer and ally employees who participated in the #disneywalkout in This Week In Queer. 

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BIG OPENING

KEVIN: Pride comes to Marvel and DC again

JON:  For her daughter’s wedding, Jamie Lee Curtis will officiate in cosplay

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DOWN AND NERDY

KEVIN: X, The Lost City, Star Trek: Discovery, Minx, Kirby & The Forgotten Land
JON: Archane, Star Trek: Picard, The Witcher, Clone Wars, Horizon

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STRONG FEMALE CHARACTER

New trailer for Roar

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THIS WEEK IN QUEER

Across the country Disney employees staged a walkout to protest the company’s support of “Don’t Say Gay” bill’s sponsors

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CLIP OF THE WEEK

New trailer for Men

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SHILF

• KEVIN: Oscar Isaac
• JON: Moon Knight

Flame Con Retrospective w/ James Tynion IV

The Geeks OUT Podcast

Opinions, reviews, incisive discussions of queer geek ideas in pop culture, and the particularly cutting brand of shade that you can only get from a couple of queer geeks all in highly digestible weekly doses.

In our final celebration of the 300th episode the Geeks OUT Podcast, Kevin sits down with the prolific writer, James Tynion IV, as they reflect on the very first Flame Con in 2015. They discuss the many books James has worked on in the 7 years since, how the industry has changed, and what projects he has on the horizon.

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*Podcast is available now, video premieres on YouTube (3/11) at 2:30pm.

Flame Con Retrospective w/ Kevin Wada

The Geeks OUT Podcast

Opinions, reviews, incisive discussions of queer geek ideas in pop culture, and the particularly cutting brand of shade that you can only get from a couple of queer geeks all in highly digestible weekly doses.

We’re celebrating the Geeks OUT Podcast’s 300th episode with a look back at the first Flame Con back in 2015 with host Kevin and the hotly in-demand artist, Kevin Wada. They look back at that first year, reflect on how things have changed for both Kevin and the Industry, and discuss some of the projects that he has coming up.

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*Podcast is available now, video premieres on YouTube (3/10) at 2:30pm.

Flame Con Retrospective w/ South Street Art Mart

The Geeks OUT Podcast

Opinions, reviews, incisive discussions of queer geek ideas in pop culture, and the particularly cutting brand of shade that you can only get from a couple of queer geeks all in highly digestible weekly doses.

In the continued celebration of 300 episodes of the Geeks OUT Podcast, Kevin sits down with Nicole and Nicole from the South Street Art Mart, a queer indy art market located in Philly. They reflect on being there at the first Flame Con (2015) under a different entity, how things have changed for them in the past 7 years, and discuss why they come back to Flame Con year after year.

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*Podcast is available now, video premieres on YouTube (3/9) at 2:30pm.

Flame Con Retrospect w/ Hazel Newlevant

The Geeks OUT Podcast

Opinions, reviews, incisive discussions of queer geek ideas in pop culture, and the particularly cutting brand of shade that you can only get from a couple of queer geeks all in highly digestible weekly doses.

In this celebration of 300 episodes of the Geeks OUT Podcast, Kevin sits down with Hazel Newlevant, for a look back at the first year of Flame Con (2015) while discussing their work, favorite memories from that inaugural event, and how things have changed for them and the industry in the past 7 years.

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*Podcast is available now, video premieres on YouTube (3/8) at 8:30pm.

The Geeks OUT Podcast: #300 – The Rise of a Flamepire

The Geeks OUT Podcast

Opinions, reviews, incisive discussions of queer geek ideas in pop culture, and the particularly cutting brand of shade that you can only get from a couple of queer geeks all in highly digestible weekly doses.

In this celebration of 300 episodes of the Geeks OUT Podcast, Kevin is joined by his original co-host, Jake Weatherman, and frequent co-host Jon Herzog, as they reflect on the past 7 years, look to the future, and tease our bonus Flame Con Retrospective episodes. *Podcast is available now, video premieres on YouTube (3/8) at 7pm.

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**This episode is dedicated to our friend and frequent guest host, John Jennison who passed last month. 

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“It Is Sometimes A Mistake To Climb; It Is Always A Mistake Never Even To Make The Attempt. But Is It Really So Bad, To Fail? If You Do Not Climb, You Will Not Fall. This Is True. But Is It That Bad To Fail, That Hard To Fall? Sometimes You Wake, And Sometimes, Yes, You Die.” – Dream (Sandman)

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The Geeks OUT Podcast: Give Peacemaker a Chance

The Geeks OUT Podcast

Opinions, reviews, incisive discussions of queer geek ideas in pop culture, and the particularly cutting brand of shade that you can only get from a couple of queer geeks all in highly digestible weekly doses.

In this week’s episode of the Geeks OUT Podcast, Kevin is joined by Teri Yoshiuchi, as they discuss their thoughts on Peacemaker, get excited about all the Star Trek shows getting renewed & coming soon, and celebrate all the nominees for GLAAD Media Awards in This Week in Queer.

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BIG OPENING

KEVIN: In an interview Joss Whedon shows his ass productions delayed due to Omicron

TERI:  Xbox is in talks to acquire Activision-Blizzard

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DOWN AND NERDY

KEVIN: Injustice, Scream, Peacemaker, Euphoria, Yellowjackets, Archive 81
TERI: The Witcher, Stay Close, Wheel of Time, D&D Wild Beyond the Witchlight

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STRONG FEMALE CHARACTER

Reports seem to suggest Batgirl will feature DCEU’s first trans character

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THIS WEEK IN QUEER

The GLAAD Media Award Nominations announced

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CLIP OF THE WEEK

Paramount+ announces premiere dates and renewals for Star Trek: Picard, Discovery, Strange New Worlds, Lower Decks and Prodigy plus a new trailer for Star Trek: Picard

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THE WEEK IN GEEK

MOVIES

• Netflix orders sequel to Chicken Run
• A sequel to A Christmas Story is officially happening
• Roku orders Weird Al biopic starring Daniel Radcliffe
• Disney developing a live-action adaptation of The Aristocats 
• Due to COVID Black Panther 2 production is paused after returning, but it looks like Winston Duke’s role is expanding considerably

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TV

• New trailer for Moon Knight
• AppleTV+ orders Monsterverse series based on Godzilla & King Kong movies
• New trailer for Severance
• The cast is revealed for Rupaul’s Drag Race UK vs. The World 
• Sadly Y: The Last Man fails to secure a new home
• Netflix makes it official Squid Game is returning for at least a second season
• New teaser for Joe vs. Carole

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COMIC BOOKS

• Marvel to release two ongoing Captain America books
• DC announces they’ll be killing the Justice League in April

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SHILF

• KEVIN: Steve & Sam & Bucky & John
• TERI: Captain America(s)

The Geeks OUT Podcast: My Safeword is The Batman

The Geeks OUT Podcast

Opinions, reviews, incisive discussions of queer geek ideas in pop culture, and the particularly cutting brand of shade that you can only get from a couple of queer geeks all in highly digestible weekly doses.

In the return of the Geeks OUT Podcast, Kevin is joined by Geeks OUT President, Nic Gitau, as they discuss the toll Omicron is taking on tv productions & the Grammy Awards, the new trailer for The Batman, and celebrate record making and current Jeopardy Champion, Amy Schneider as our Strong Female Character of the Week. 

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BIG OPENING

KEVIN: The Grammy’s along with numerous tv productions delayed due to Omicron

NIC:  According to rumors Okoye will be in queer relationship in Black Panther 2

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DOWN AND NERDY

KEVIN: The 355, The Book of Boba Fett, Superman: Son of Kal-El
NIC: Power Born of Dreams: My Story Is Palestine; Alice in Borderland; Dafne & The Rest (Todo lo Otro)

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STRONG FEMALE CHARACTER

Trans Jeopardy champion Amy Schneider making history

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THIS WEEK IN QUEER

New merch seems to confirm America Chavez will be queer in Dr. Strange 2

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CLIP OF THE WEEK

New trailer for Moonfall

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THE WEEK IN GEEK

MOVIES

• Director of Luca toyed with making it explicitly queer
• Pixar’s Turning Red now to debut exclusively on Disney+
• Sony delays Morbius yet again until April
• Newly added to the public domain, Bambi and Winnie the Pooh
• New trailer for The Batman and new looks at The Riddler/Penguin

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TV

• New trailer for Archive 81
• New trailer for Getting Curious with Jonathan Van Ness
• Netflix developing a Scott Pilgrim anime series
• The SATC revival And Just Like That… becomes a queer meme
• New trailer for season 2 of Resident Alien

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VIDEO GAMES

• Sony announces the new Playstation VR2
• President of Square Enix espouses the greatness of NFT’s & blockchain

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SHILF

• KEVIN: The Riddler
• NIC: Selina Kyle

Geeks OUT Presents: Serving Magical Person Realness

Geeks OUT Presents: Serving Magical Person Realness

From Sailor Moon to Yuri on Ice, anime, manga, and graphic novels have been evolving platforms for the showcasing of LGBTQ+ characters and themes. Sit with us, as a panel of editors, artists, and cultural commentators, discuss the works that sparked their interest in Japanese visual media, as well as the nuanced spectrum of queer representation, discussing the historical significance of censorship and queer-coding to the canonical representation of queer identities today.

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Geeks OUT was proud to present a panel at Anime NYC this year featuring Kiara Valdez (Associate Editor at First Second), Erica Friedman (founder of Yuricon), Princess Weekes (Assistant Editor – The Mary Sue), and moderated by our own Michele Kirichanskaya.

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Please enjoy this video recording of our panel.

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