Interview with Jess K. Hardy, Author of Love in the Time of Wormholes

14 Sep 2021

What’s the story behind the story? What inspired you to write the Ignisar Series?

Sunny, the main character and single point of view in Love in the Time of Wormholes, came to me after reading Dark Age by Pierce Brown. Pierce put his character Victra through some serious pain in that book, especially regarding the death of her child. I was rattled after reading DA and turned, as I often do after reading heavier stories, to romance to help lighten things up. Only this time the romance story was my own. Sunny shares several qualities with Victra. They’re both brilliant, capable, blunt women with great big walls built up around them. Wormholes was my therapy after Pierce broke my heart, and Sunny was my attempt to give Victra a happily ever after while working through the trauma of losing a child.

I am a pantser on an almost unforgivable level, so that’s all I had at the start. Only Sunny. Everyone else arrived as my secondary characters usually do, stumbling into my subconscious making loads of noise until they somehow wound up right where they were supposed to be.

What’s your favorite scene from your new release, Love in the Time of Wormholes?

There are several options. The rogue pleasure pods. Talking Garran down in the ballroom. Every scene with Elanie the bionic (the star of book 2, by the way.) But my favorite scene is probably the rain scene in the sensory room. It’s the only scene I have ever written out of order but I just had to get it out. I had to have that resolve moment where Sunny finally forgives herself. And the allusion to Arrakis for a sci-fi lover like me was such a perk. It is probably the most powerful scene I’ve ever written and I still cry whenever I read it.  

If you had to write a blurb for the last book you read, what would it say?

Haha. Ho boy. Well, uh, something like, “A summer job on the farm heats up when a milkmaid falls for her minotaur.” Yep. I’m reading that book.

What romantic couple from literature makes you swoon? Which one is over-hyped?

Sean Bell and Zenobia Iverson from Sinner by Sierra Simone absolutely level me. I’ve read the book five times at least and I just have so much love for those two. Also Chiara and Mason from Katie Golding’s forthcoming Relentless, the third book in her MotoGP romance series. I was lucky enough to read an advanced copy of this book and these two chaotic babies are absolute steamy perfection.

I’m not a huge enemies to lovers fan so I’d say those relationships, in general, are overhyped, but I don’t have a specific couple I’d throw onto the flames.

What’s your favorite genre to read? Is it the same as your favorite genre to write?

It’s a toss-up between romance and science fiction/fantasy. I tend to go back and forth but I have been reading romance a bit more heavily lately. I’m definitely feeling a pull toward space at the moment. And yes, these are also my favorite genres to write in.  

Do you have any quirky writing habits? Where did you write Love in the Time of Wormholes

Sadly, my writing habits are in no way interesting enough to warrant the use of the word quirky. I work over 40 hours a week in my day job so I write whenever and wherever I can. On the couch while my husband and son watch TV, in the car when we’re going out of town or driving into the mountains, in bed after my husband falls asleep. I love writing outside on my deck with a glass of whiskey, but I have a massive bee phobia so that never lasts as long as I want it to.  

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

I recently received this hysterical and on-point advice from my dear friend and the author of the Under Red Sky series, J. Calamy, after I’d spent too much time reading reviews of my books. She said, “Man, you need to log out and have your dog change your passwords.”

Perhaps this is better advice on how to survive as an author as opposed to strictly writing advice, but it’s still pretty stellar. It’s also no surprise that I’m a huge Pierce Brown fan. He once recommended, as advice to new authors, to, “Howl like a motherfucker.” I’ve never forgotten that and actually have, in the privacy of my own heart, howled to get me through tough scenes. It helps. A surprising amount.  

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