Hi guys! Today I am so happy to welcome back author Kate McMurray. Kate is here to talk to us more about her new book, Show and Tell. She has also brought a copy to give away to one lucky commenter, so be sure to see the details at the end of the post. Welcome Kate!
I’m a very practical person in life—I like lists and plans and outlines and I’m totally that friend who calls eight times to confirm we’re still on for dinner Friday—but in writing I sometimes jump right into the deep end without thinking it all out first. That was what happened when I started outlining Show and Tell. I thought, “Okay, there’s an antique shop and the owner is a reincarnated God. But… from where?”
I thought at first that surely there was a myth in Greek mythology that fit the story I was trying to tell. I kept going back to Castor and Pollux. They were two brothers, one immortal and one not. When Castor, the mortal, is killed, Pollux asked Zeus if he could share his immortality. Zeus granted the wish by making both immortal in the constellation Gemini. I liked this idea, one immortal sharing immortality with a mortal. But Castor and Pollux were brothers and my characters were lovers.
I spent a lot of time poking around different pantheons, never quite finding a myth that suited my story. But this is fiction, right? Fiction is all about making stuff up. So I created a myth.
Sort of. I borrowed liberally from Celtic mythology. I started with Aengus, the god of love and youth, the Gaelic answer to Venus. In Show and Tell, Dan goes to see a professor who explains that the Celts had an oral tradition and what survives is filtered through the Romans and then later Christians who wrote down what they encountered. This is true. The stories also vary depending on which group of Celts you’re looking at; the Irish and the Welsh had different gods and origin stories. But Aengus was my jumping off point. Irish Celtic mythology is riddled with stories of Aengus’s romantic exploits. So I thought, well, it’s not completely outside of the realm of possibility that Aengus could have had a male lover.
Show and Tell tells the myth of Aengus and Caoimhin, a myth that exists entirely in my imagination. Aengus comes to Earth one day and falls instantly in love with a mortal fisherman. When the fisherman grows ill and dies, Aengus makes a bargain with his father, the Dagda, the (actual) leader of the Irish pantheon. The way that bargain plays out in the modern world is at the crux of Show and Tell, so I won’t tell you much more. But my contemporary characters, Dan and Malcolm, do run into a handful of gods, both “real” (as in, from ancient mythology) and imaginary (as in, from my brain).
The best fantasy is plausible, even if it isn’t. Sure, dragons and wizarding schools and reincarnated gods don’t exist in our world, but the best stories about them are grounded enough in reality that we believe they do when we’re reading.
Kate McMurray is the author of several m/m romances, including the recent Rainbow Award winner Across the East River Bridge. When she’s not writing, Kate works a nonfiction editor. She also reads a lot, plays the violin, knits and crochets, and drools over expensive handbags. She’s maybe a tiny bit obsessed with baseball. She lives in Brooklyn, NY, with a pesky cat. Visit her on the interwebs at www.katemcmurray.com.
One of the few joys in Dan’s life is the TV show Junk Shop, a reality show about antiques hosted by the handsome and charismatic Malcolm Tell. Then an old music box turns up, and Dan’s sister encourages him to try to get on the show and meet the object of his affection. He does, and his life changes completely.
When Dan and Malcolm first meet, they have a sudden vision of a couple from the past. Is it a glimpse at a past life or something else entirely? They agree to work together to figure out what is going on, and they stumble upon a forgotten Celtic myth that may explain everything. If the myth is true, then Dan and Malcolm could be a pair of lovers who have been reincarnated over and over again over two thousand years. That seems impossible, but it’s hard to deny that something very strange is happening.
As Dan and Malcolm work to find the truth, they fall for each other hard. But searching for who they really are puts them both in grave danger, and they find themselves racing against time to keep their happily ever after.
Kate has brought a copy of Show and Tell to give away to one lucky reader. Leave a comment for your chance to win. The contest closes on Sunday, January 13th at 11:59 pm EST.
- By entering the contest, you’re confirming that you are at least 18 years old.
- Winners will be selected by random number.
- If you win, you must respond to my email within 48 hours or another winner will be chosen. Please make sure that your spam filter allows email from Joyfully Jay.