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Monday, March 12, 2012


Spaceships and Sexy Men
Kris DeLake

When I was in high school, I fell in love.

With Han Solo.

I saw Star Wars (the original movie) on the day it was released. I used to argue with all of my female friends that Han, not Luke, was the sexy one, the one whose shoes (well, boots) would fit under my bed. My friends understood after The Empire Strikes Back, but it took them that long to figure it out. Me, I knew the moment I saw him.

By then, I already had a taste for space-faring bad boys. Because, honestly, if you really look at it closely, you’ll see that classic Star Trek’s James T. Kirk is a classic bad boy too. Yeah, he runs a ship and is a captain in a quasi-military organization, but he never follows the rules. And he sleeps with every pretty female alien he can find.

In grade school, I figured out that he just needed to meet me. Then all those other women would pale in comparison, and James and I would have marvelous adventures together.

Until I threw him over for Han Solo. Which I soooo would have done.

Fast forward to the start of my writing career. I went to Clarion Writers Workshop in Michigan, where I was told in no uncertain terms that space opera was not science fiction, and bad boys did not run spaceships. I became a science fiction writer (under my real name Kristine Kathryn Rusch), won a few Hugo awards, and also wrote a lot of Star Trek and some Star Wars so I could flirt with my real love.

Meanwhile, the romance genre changed. Back then, romances had to be about real people in real time periods. No spaceships. No werewolves. Real people, falling in love in the Civil War or in modern-day Connecticut. Gradually, vampires became sexy, and outer space became cool.

I could finally write my sexy space opera stories.

You won’t find James T. Kirk or Han Solo in Assassins in Love, but you’ll find echoes of them. And you’ll find something you didn’t see in early Star Trek—a tough female heroine.

So sit back and enjoy Assassins in Love. And as you read, imagine a John Williams soundtrack with lots of fast-moving spaceships on the screen. There will be more assassins stories. Because sexy men hang out in space. James T. Kirk taught me that.

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Debby said...

I loved Han Solo myself. Much better than Luke. I bet your books is great if there are echoes.
debby236 at gmail dot com

Barbara E. said...

I love Star Wars, Star Trek, etc. What could be better than that type of story with a tough female heroine mixed in. I'm in!

Barbed1951 at aol dot com