If you read f/f NA/Romance, it’s pretty impossible not to know Rebekah Weatherspoon, but how well do you really know Rebekah Weatherspoon? (Also, not to brag, but I just got to see her on several panels at RT and she was freaking fantastic; if you ever get the opportunity to hear her panel somewhere, DO IT.) How could I not beg to pick the brain behind not only a seriously epic collection of diverse romance, but the entire #WoCInRomance site? (PS she also had a new release just this past weekend: check out So Right, the sequel to So Sweet, which share a bi heroine in an m/f relationship!)
I usually avoid asking authors about their inspiration because I know it gets asked to death, but you have a paranormal lesbian sorority series, and I’m sorry but I must know where the idea for that came from. Must.
Ha! I don’t know where the idea came from, I remember exactly where I was when the idea came to me. I was driving down Wilshire Blvd and I hit the intersection at New Hampshire Ave (I’m from New Hampshire, you see). The idea popped into my head and I remember thinking this is so ridiculous and over the top I’ll be kicking myself if I don’t run with it. So I did.
You’re one of very few writers of f/f NA, and bless you for it. What have been the biggest challenges and awesome moments of publishing it?
Honestly, I don’t see any challenges. I think a lot of my work is outside of the mainstream. I write a lot of women of color and being a woman of color I face the same challenges walking down the street or going to the bank. It’s just another day.
What’s a particularly conscious choice you’ve made in your representation?
I’ve made the choice to write women of color, particularly young black women. I feel like young women of color (tween-25) almost NEVER seen themselves on screen or in literature. And if they are screen they are sometimes played by an adult. I love Arden Cho something fierce, but she was like 28 when she started playing a 17-year-old on Teen Wolf. I know that sort of thing messes with the teen mind. In writing NA, I wanted to give younger women a most realistic portrayal of themselves. Even if there are vampires involved.
What’s the first queer representation you saw in any medium that really stuck with you, for better or for worse?
Oh man, I really have to think. When I was growing up none of the LGBTQ terms were in my vocabulary. My parents just had friends that were married to other women, but they didn’t tell me they were lesbians so I didn’t have the words for it. BUT I think Ricky on My So-Called Life stuck with me. Ricky was gay and out and Latino and living in a mostly white town, but he was also so cool. I remember really wishing that Ricky could find his own happiness outside of Angela and her family. I’m sure he’d have it by now.
What’s something you’ve seen in LGBTQIAP+ lit that’s really stuck with you, for better or for worse?
Uh, there’s a lot of racism. That kinda sucks. Also a lot of different flavors of misogyny and transmisogny and transphobia that sneak in. When I came out I remember being really excited and then extra bummed that a lot of what I was seeing in the straight/cis community was presenting in every aspect of the LGBTQIAP+ community as well including our literature.
Which of your books has queer representation?
What’s your favorite of your covers, and why?
You can’t make me choose. I won’t choose. (Blogger’s note: This is legit; her covers are fanfreakingtastic. You can scroll through them all here.)
What are some of your favorite queer-centric things on the Internet?
Tumblr. Aint nothing queerer than my tumblr feed.
What do you do when you’re not writing?
Watching TV. I’m super boring, but I’m also kind of obsessed with consuming media. To be a writer or to work in entertainment you have to know what’s going on. I watch a ton of TV and a lot of movies.
What are your favorite LGBTQIAP+ reads?
- Split by Mel Bossa
- Light by Nathan Burgoine
- Such A Pretty Face and The Caretaker’s Daughter by Gabrielle Goldsby
- Awake Unto Me by Kathleen Knowles
What would you still love to see in LGBTQIAP+ lit?
A lot less of the crud I mentioned before with the bigotry, etc. and I NEED more queer New Adult reads, and I would sell my grandma for more erotic queer lit of every kind. Queer erotic fairy tales, queer erotic sports romances, queer erotic romantic comedies. Make ’em queer, and sweet, and extra porny.
What’s up next for you?
Self-pub wise, after I wrap up the Sugar Baby series in the fall I’ll be working on some space lesbian erotic romance. There’s not enough erotic romance in space, featuring lesbians.