Today I am so pleased to welcome J. Scott Coatsworth to Joyfully Jay. Scott has come to talk to us about his latest release, The Gauntlet Runner. He has also brought along a great giveaway. Please join me in giving a big welcome!

gauntlet runner banner


How I Escaped the Pandemic

In late 2019, I faced a dilemma. I had finished Dropnauts, my Liminal Sky: Ariadne Cycle spin-off, and I wasn’t sure what I wanted to tackle next.

I had three possibilities: Coredivers, the sequel to Dropnauts; the fabled Middle Trilogy ie: the books between The Ariadne Cycle and The Oberon Cycle; or a new sci-fantasy series based on the world I created in The Last Run and refined in The Emp Test.

I chose the latter, in part because I was in the mood for some fantasy after writing so much sci-fi, and I dove in.

A few months later, the whole world shut down.

We writers are curious beasts. Many writer-folk I knew stopped writing altogether during that dark period, overwhelmed by what was happening in the world and finding it impossible to tap that creative impulse.

For me, it was the opposite. Tharassas was an escape, a place I could go visit that didn’t require face masks, that wasn’t a mirror of our own, suddenly plunged into darkness. On Tharassas, I could explore, both the amazing world and the people and creatures that populated her.

It became a way out for me, a pressure release valve, a welcoming landing place where I could shirk the loads that weighed me down here on the earth of Covid-19 and just have fun.

Sometimes I carried the darkness with me. A part of me thinks that what afflicts Aik in the series is a cousin to the darkness that lived in our own souls throughout that first dark year. The source may be different, but the darkness is much the same.

And yet in my own fictional world, I held the keys to overcoming it. It was empowering, freeing in a way that’s hard to explain now that the world has spun around on her axis a few more times and things don’t seem as dire.

Still, I will always be grateful for the time I spent in the midst of a pandemic, light years away on a world with a green sky. I hope you find refuge there too.


gauntlet runner coverA GUARD AND A THIEF. WHAT COULD GO WRONG?

Aik has fallen hopelessly in love with his best friend. But Raven’s a thief, which makes things… complicated. Oh, and Raven has just been kidnapped by a dragon.

Now Aik is off on a quest of his own, to hunt down the foul beast and make them give back his … friend? Lover? Soulmate? The whole not-knowing thing just makes everything harder.

Meanwhile, the world of Tharassas is falling apart, besieged by earthquakes, floods, and strange creatures no one has ever seen before. Aik’s ex, Silya has gone back to Gullton to do try to save her people as the Hencha Queen, and Aik’s stuck in a caravan with her mother and a damnable magical gauntlet that won’t let him be. He has to find Raven, before it’s too late.

Things were messy before, but now they’re much, much worse.

Series Blurb:

The Tharassas Cycle is a four book sci-fantasy series set on the recently colonized world of Tharassas. When humans first arrived on planet, they thought they were alone until the hencha mind made itself known. But now a new threat has arisen to challenge both humankind and their new allies on this alien world.

Both the prequel and book one are on sale for just 99¢:

Universal Buy Link:


J. scott coatsworth bio photoScott lives with his husband Mark in a yellow bungalow in Sacramento. He was indoctrinated into fantasy and sci fi by his mother at the tender age of nine. He devoured her library, but as he grew up, he wondered where all the people like him were.

He decided that if there weren’t queer characters in his favorite genres, he would remake them to his own ends.

A Rainbow Award winning author, he runs Queer Sci Fi, QueeRomance Ink, and Other Worlds Ink with Mark, sites that celebrate fiction reflecting queer reality, and is the committee chair for the Indie Authors Committee at the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA).


Scott is giving away a $20 gift card with this tour:

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