I've always been a voracious reader. You'd think, what with my pursuing a Ph.D. in English, that my reading tastes would turn to the uber-literary, right? Nope. While I can certainly appreciate some of the literary classics (I'm a big fan of Dostoevsky, for instance), most of the time I'd rather be curled up with a good fantasy novel. For the last ten months, my particular focus has been urban fantasy, especially anything with werewolves, vampires, and/or plenty of irony (for the fellow ironically minded, I suggest The Good Fairies of New York by Martin Millar, by the way). Patricia Briggs and Kim Harrison are currently my fave authors in this genre.
Anyway, earlier this summer I got the itch to write my own urban fantasy novel. So I did.
I say this like it was that matter of fact. Don't worry, it's an act. I paced, sweated, told myself I was being totally foolish to be writing about vampires when I had a perfectly serious dissertation I was being paid (albeit very poorly) to work on. I also ranted at myself about how unlikely it would be that I'd write anything publishable, find an agent, find readers, yadda yadda yadda. In other words, picture the stereotype of the neurotic writer, add curly hair, an ignored dissertation, a love of cats, a patient husband, and you'd come up with me. But last week, all mental self-inflicted torture aside, I managed to finish the final words of my first draft.
I danced an absurd jig of joy--you know, the one where you're glad it's only your cats watching your rhythm-less hopping and swinging-of-arms? Yeah, that one. Then my writing-instructor self jumped in to remind me that revision is often 9/10ths of writing, and my rhythm-less state faltered even further. (No, I've never been good at letting myself celebrate, in case you were wondering--fits in with that whole neurotic thing.)
Anyway, now I'm alternating my time between coding transcripts for my dissertation, doing PurrPrints things, and looking over my manuscript. I'm also combing through my friends to see if any of them also read urban fantasy--but so far, I haven't found a one. They either stick with the literary stuff, or they don't tend to read fiction at all. Some of them are still being extremely kind enough to read through it and give me feedback anyway--but I'm still hoping to find at least one fellow urban-fantasy reader to give me feedback.
Hence the question in my title--do any of you happen to be big-time urban-fantasy fanatics like me? And, if so, do you perhaps feel like reading a not-yet-published book in that genre and giving me some honest feedback about it? Unfortunately I can't offer any reward beyond a great big thank you (both immediately and, should it get published, in the acknowledgements page), so I completely understand if there are no takers. But I thought it wouldn't hurt to ask, right?
Alright, this excessively long off-topic rant is now officially over :)
(p.s. - in a search on allposters.com for interesting vampire posters, the above image came up--you can find it here if you want to know more about it. It seemed suited to my topic and mood, so I thought I'd share)