J. C. Conway writes romance, science fiction and fantasy short stories and novels. He is also a civil litigation attorney specializing in complex, long-tail insurance liability cases. Hearts in Ruin is his first published full-length romance novel. The following excerpt is from the interview he gave to The Theissen Review:
TTR: The majority of your writing focuses on science fiction, romance and fantasy. What about genres interests you so much?
J. C. Conway: First, I write science fiction because I was raised on it. I grew up during the space race. My earliest pleasure-reading books were about Tom Swift, Jr., boy inventor. In 7th grade I moved on to E. E. “Doc” Smith’s classic space operas like the Lensman Series, and later discovered the legions of writers that really challenged basic assumptions. They amazed me with their vision. To me, good science fiction involves plausibility or extrapolation, however remote. Since change is inevitable, it is illuminating to explore human reactions to change, even if it’s only to show that certain traits (for better or worse) might always remain the same.
I write fantasy for similar reasons. My introduction was through C. S. Lewis, J. R. R. Tolkien and the early version of the fantasy role-playing game, Dungeons & Dragons. I later discovered T.H. White and other imaginative authors creating fantasy worlds from different aspects of myth and legend. Fantasy removes the plausibility of science fiction and instead creates a rich backdrop of nature or magic, which works much better for some stories.
I discovered romance much later. You would not have caught me reading it in my youth. But that was a mistake. In honing my writing skills I encountered many romance writers in classes and workshops. Through them I found a strong writing community whose skilled members help and encourage each other enthusiastically. I also learned more than half my plots are riddled with romance. Human relationships are a deeply-rooted part of our psyche. People change as a reaction to each other. I love the personal depth of a good romance, and I have learned it’s a genre that is both passionate and fun.