Today we interview author Megan Morgan, of The Wicked City, about the urban fantasy genre.
PYN: Tell us about your latest book.
Megan: The Bloody City is the second installment of the Siren Song series, sequel to The Wicked City. The story focuses on June Coffin, a Siren who lives in a world where paranormal people are known to the public and struggle to be part of society without discrimination and fear from ‘normal’ people. It’s not easy, of course. There’s also tons of study done on paranormal people and a lot of science involved—but in Chicago, where the story takes place, there’s also a lot of corruption and nefarious intentions where ‘science’ is concerned and paranormal people end up being more or less ill-treated lab rats.
June is extremely reluctant about what she is and she hates her position in the paranormal community. She wants to be left alone and to pretend she isn’t part of it. However, she’s going to have to do a lot of growing up and redefining who she is. In this book, some huge terrible things have already happened to her and she has to figure out how to be strong and find her place in the world. This book also introduces my version of vampires, who differ drastically from the classic romantic vampire trope.
What is the mythology behind sirens?
I didn’t really use the classic mythology of Sirens. June doesn’t fit the stereotypical creature lounging by the sea luring sailors to their death. Instead, ‘Siren’ is a colloquialism in this world, so applied because June can influence people to do things with her voice. She hates it though, because it made her life hard growing up and affected her family quite negatively, before she learned how to control it. The technical scientific term for what June has is ‘aural captivation,’ but people also call her a Siren. It’s also not gender-specific, as her twin brother is also a Siren.
How would you define urban fantasy?
A little bit of romance, a little bit of action, and a whole lot of freaky otherworldly-ness. I write romance as well and I think urban fantasy differs because, while it often has romantic elements, there’s less focus on the romance and more on the action and world-building. Sometimes it’s a lot sexier than traditional romance would be. I love paranormal stuff too, so it’s the perfect genre for me. Most urban fantasy seems to have elaborate paranormal worlds where the author makes up new and interesting rules for the creatures. It’s a lot of fun. Urban fantasy is scary and sexy!
I notice there are a lot of tattoos on your book covers for The Wicked City and The Bloody City. What’s up with that?
June is a tattoo artist and she did most of her own work. She’s a bit of a rebel and punk. In The Wicked City, someone accurately suggests to her that the reason she’s so wild and colorful on the outside is to draw attention away from what’s inside her. She tries to deny it, but it’s completely true.
What other fun/interesting paranormal legends did you turn up in your book research?
I have a bunch of different creatures in my world: shapeshifters, vampires, telepaths, Sirens, succubi, telekinetics—all kinds of people! Alas, I don’t have any werewolves, but you never know. I tried to do something unique with all my paranormal people and explain them ‘scientifically.’ I didn’t do a whole lot of legend research and just created my own rules. However, I did do a lot of research to try to find ways to explain them that would seem realistic and medically-oriented. I had to learn about how hormones and receptors work, because that explains the bulk of paranormal powers in my world. Vampirism is also caused by a virus, and I figured out how that would affect skin cells and blood to give vampires their classic traits such as being hurt by sunlight and needing to drink blood.
What’s next for you and your writing?
The third book in the series, The Burning City, comes out in May of next year. I’m working on a fourth book right now. I’m also working on a paranormal romance series, and I continue to write romance and erotic romance, both paranormal and contemporary. I have a bunch of novellas published in those veins. You can check out all my work at my website: http://www.meganmorganauthor.com
On the run…
It’s been four months since the head of the Institute of Supernatural Research was murdered. But that doesn’t mean June Coffin is out of hiding yet. In a world where being different can get you killed, it’s best to keep a low profile. Especially for a Siren who can control other people with the call of her voice. That goes double if your powers might be inexplicably growing…
On the hunt…
But June isn’t the only one trying to clear her name. There’s Sam, the charismatic paranormal rights leader, and Micha, the first human on record to go paranormal. All of them must bargain with a mysterious vampire named Occam Reed if they want to stay alive.
Out of time…
As tensions increase between humans and paranormals, June must decide who to trust. If only she could hear the song inside her heart…
All Romance Ebooks: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-thebloodycity-1886258-237.html
Megan Morgan is an urban fantasy, paranormal romance, and erotica author from Cleveland, Ohio. Bartender by day and purveyor of things that go bump at night, she’s trying to turn writing into her day job so she can be on the other side of the bar for a change. She’s a member of the RWA and author of the Siren Song urban fantasy series from Kensington Books, as well as numerous other shorter, sexy works.