The Love That Motivates Laura Anne Gilman

Author Laura Anne Gilman writes urban fantasy and fantasy novels, but she also delves into series romance. Read on to find out why this award winning author is so excited to write for Harlequin's Nocturne line.

When people hear that I write paranormal romance for Nocturne, they tend to ask "why?"

It's not that they're putting down paranormals (those people I just ignore) but they don't understand why, with my two-book-a-year schedule on the fantasy side (200,000+ words!), I would also want to write a category romance 'on the side.'

The short answer is: because I enjoy it.

The longer answer is that I am, deep in my cynical, pragmatic heart, a romantic. Romance novels haven't always hit the spot for me (hey, it's a wide genre, not everyone likes everything) but the idea that there's someone out there who will "get" you and have your back (as well as your heart), no matter how odd, awkward, or fanged/cursed/doomed you might be?  Oh yeah.  Throw in some suspense and physical danger, a touch of the Outsider, and I'm There. I like being able to give that feeling back to my fellow readers.

Second: Writing paranormal romance is fun. Sometimes, the research and process of a 100,000+ word novel with intense world-building and half a dozen plot-twists, each part of a series with the attendant continuity issues, can get pretty hairy: am I going to be able to hold everything together, and not shred my brain in the process? (Answer: Nope. I finish each book feeling utterly shredded for about a week after.)

By contrast, starting with known parameters of a paranormal romance (he's X, she's Y, danger and mayhem ensue until Love Kicks Ass) there's more time to do what I call writer-play -- focusing on the character's emotions, their instincts, their reactions, and their personal growth out of -- not just the adversity, but how those two characters interact, one-on-one. 

And -- even as I drive the characters further into terrible situations, I know it's all going to end happily, and well.

Sometimes the writer, as well as the reader, needs that guarantee.

-Laura Anne Gilman


Laura Anne Gilman writes paranormal romances under the name "Anna Leonard."  Her most recent book, The Hunted  was realeased in April 2010. You can visit the author online at or follow her on Twitter: @LAGilman.