Posts tagged “publishing

Literary Spotlight: Ken Harrison, Publisher of Seventh Window Publications

With fewer of the big publishing houses making a concerted effort to produce new gay fiction, I’m happy to see Seventh Window Publications, founded by Ken Harrison, focusing on that market. Authors such as Drake Braxton, Eric Arvin, Jeffrey Ballam, Xavier Axelson and G.L. Roberts , among others, have found a home at Seventh Window, and the imprint has many titles in the pipeline.  Ken Harrison graciously sat down with me recently to talk about the state of publishing, gay books, and some of Seventh Window’s upcoming titles.

Ken, I appreciate your taking the time to chat!  First, how did Seventh Window Publications come to be? 

I started out as a writer, and Seventh Window began when I realized that I didn’t want to write. That’s a strange realization, mostly because even as a child, I had always wanted to be a writer. But once I started to get published, I realized that I had to be out there, front and center, seen and heard. Which is was not what I wanted. But I could not leave the work that I love, so I began Seventh Window, which allows me to pursue my passion in a way which fits me personally.

How do you see Seventh Window fitting into the larger publishing landscape?  What role do you see Seventh Window playing?

Some of the most exciting fiction comes from the small press.  A small press will take chances, mostly because a small press is usually working for the sheer love of publishing. When a small press finds a book they like, it doesn’t try to fit it into a mold, but embraces it for what it is.

What kind of work appeals to you?

Myself, I like dark romance. You know, stories about people falling in love that you wouldn’t normally think of as typical romance. Because of this I’ve published authors such as Xavier Axelson, Drake Braxton, and GL Roberts. These authors created stories about people who have been hurt by life and somehow still find a reason to love, which I find inspiring.  There’s something about an author who is willing to show a character with very few—if any—positive influences in their lives, yet finding the positive, finding love.

Are you yourself a romantic?

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I Have a Need for Solitude

I’ve been in an odd mood lately.

Aside from the time spent with our family, which I love, I’m finding it hard to be positive or upbeat these days, which is just not like me.  I tend to let things roll right off my back, but am finding this funk hard to shake.

I notice it most when I’m alone, whether in the car, running errands, or just hanging out.  It hovers, enveloping, and at times grows so strong it makes my heart race.

Partly this feeling is caused by economics.  It’s hard to be enthusiastic about work — or anything else — when you’re getting paid a whole lot less than you’re used to and, indeed, far less than you are worth.  Especially when finances are tight, prices are skyrocketing, and you have that added pressure of trying to stretch your money to the next paycheck.

Part of this is impatience.  After 10 years spent writing my novel, I want it to be published and in people’s hand right now.  And yet with agents and publishers having 3-month turnarounds, there is nothing remotely expedient about this process.

Part of this is political.  When I voted for Obama, I voted for change — and leadership.  While I like some of what he has done, I was hoping for more.  I wanted to see him dismantle the big behemoths — education, healthcare, defense, environment — and start from scratch.  Put together blue ribbon panels and have the experts — not politicians or lobbyists — tell us how we can do things better.  We need to start again, from the ground up, and actually solve problems — no more patches. (more…)