T.J. Deschamps - A Modern, Queer Retelling

T.J. Deschamps - A Modern, Queer Retelling

T.J. loves to build worlds with words while raising three precocious teens in the Pacific Northwest with her spouse, a tech nerd who happens to be a doppelgänger for Denzel Washington. She loves cons, lifting weights and parenting ind conventional ways. She also might be a dragon. As our Author of the Day, she tells us all about her book, Tam Lin.

Please give us a short introduction to what Tam Lin is about.

The story is the first in a series about three ill-fated lovers bound to the queen of the fairies, each for separate reasons. Tam Lin is a teaser fairy tale retelling for a much larger world and bigger story yet to come.

What inspired you to write about someone who travels to Ireland to get over a fight with his boyfriend?

I started writing the story after I took a trip to Ireland and went on many tours myself. I wanted to create a world that reflected how Ulster has long ties to Scotland. Many Irish, Scottish, and Welsh myths have similar roots akin to how Greek and Roaman mythology is interrelated.

Tell us more about Tom Lane. What makes him so special?

Special? No. The beauty of Tom Lane is that he isn't special. He's a disaster queer who doesn't know what he wants from his life. It's everyone around him that's amazing, and he has an incredible past, but I don't want to get into that...spoilers!

Why did you pick Ireland as the backdrop for your story?

Ireland is featured, but so is Seattle and the Otherworld.

Besides writing, what other secret skills do you have?

If I told you, I'd have to kill you. Kidding! I'm a big ol' nerd and have lots of hobbies.

Which of your characters was the most challenging to create?

Tom. I wanted to make him interesting but not entirely loveable. He's a bittersweet main character.

Do any of your characters ever take off on their own tangent, refusing to do what you had planned for them?

I've always found that notion sort of silly. I plot and outline before I write. My imagination might go on tangents, but the characters are creations of my mind with a purpose. I did not expect Fergus to steal my attention, so much so he gets to be the outset narrator for the rest of the series.

What is the best writing advice you've ever received?

To learn all the rules, the tropes, and other writing and genre expectations so that you can break them well.

How do you go about making your characters relatable?

I don't believe all characters should be relatable. I believe their predicaments should be interesting and that carries the reader through the story.

Tell us more about the book cover and how it all came about?

I wanted a fairy ring or fairy circle. Anyone familiar with tales of fae will know exactly where this story was headed and want to leap through with Tom.

In which way is this a retelling?

It is more of a continuation of what happened to Tam Lin after he broke his vow to the queen of the fairies.

Do you have any interesting writing habits? What is an average writing day like for you?

I have a pretty structured schedule: writing, editing, and marketing my work.

What are you working on right now? I'm working on the third book of the Faerie Tales series Vow Unbroken that will come out a few months after Warrior Tithe, the sequel/prequel to Tam Lin. I'm also revising Eastside Hedge Witch, a very different story set in the Seattle suburbs.

Where can our readers discover more of your work or interact with you?

They can go to my website https://tammydeschamps.com, follow me on Twitter @MmeDeschamps, Facebook https://www.facebook.com/TJDeschampsauthor, or Instagram https://www.instagram.com/writer.reads/