Lesfic Book Club: Art of Magic

For our April 2021 meeting of the Lesfic Book Club, we discussed Art of Magic by KJ. If you weren’t able to make it, check out the transcript below.

A couple of notes on the transcript:

If you want to join us live, we discuss lesfic novels every month at http://lesficlove.com (sign up or follow me on Twitter to find out what we’re reading next). Some chat participants requested that their names be obscured, so below you’ll see that everyone has been anonymized as Reader 1, Reader 2, etc.

KJ  4:02 PM

Hey everyone. It’s 6am! I’m awake Sort of.

Reader 1 Today at 4:04 PM

What kind of research did you have to do for this book?

KJ  4 minutes ago

The tumour stuff, for sure. Lots about that because I wanted to get it correct. But then Facebook algorithms kept sending me ads for private hospitals.

The inference stuff I researched then used a lot of creative license.

Reader 1  2 minutes ago

I think you did quite well with what you worked up regarding the inference and such

Reader 2 Today at 4:04 PM

Such a delicious concept. However did you come up with the idea?

KJ  2 minutes ago

I had this idea that if you could SEE love, what would it look like? I know love has been explained in physical interpretations, but what it look like if it fell out off the canvas, out of the tubes of paint, and into real life?

Reader 3 Today at 4:07 PM

I enjoyed your book – Art and Magic – great combo! Your use of imagery was amazing – how do you do that??

KJ  < 1 minute ago

I work in pictures, in film, when I write. It’s a delightful way to see a scene. I also draw and paint so I worked hard to marry the two. Something that is particularly ‘me’ is my imagery. So that’s lovely of you to comment on it.

Reader 4 Today at 4:10 PM

Reminded me of a book i read years ago about a boy who experienced life in colors rather than words

KJ  < 1 minute ago

Yes! Synesthesia. That’s where I started. Then ‘pushed’ it further.

Reader 5  1 minute ago

If you had to pick just one, would you choose visual artist or writer?

KJ  < 1 minute ago

Gah! That’s impossible. Nope, both.

Reader 3  2 minutes ago

you tie them together so well, it was very much like reading the script of a scene

now if only we could get music to play while we ‘watch’ too!

KJ  < 1 minute ago

:smiling_face_with_3_hearts: the scenes such as Cath’s arrival in the carpark, the dome of colour, the first sketch scene…they were so visual and fun to write.

Reader 6 Today at 4:16 PM

KJ. I really enjoyed the book too.  I think the front cover was amazing. Probably one of the best I have seen. Who are your go-to authors?

KJ  < 1 minute ago

Soooo many! My author list is now ridiculously long. But I like to read Cari Hunter, Cheyenne Blue, Clare Ashton, Melissa Brayden, but I have found so many new (to me) authors in the last 18 months

Reader 7 Today at 4:18 PM

And I have a question. Since you are so visual, have you thought about writing for tv/movies?

KJ  < 1 minute ago

I HAVE! But thinking about it is all I got to.

Reader 7  4:18 PM

I’m eating with my family but need to say, if you haven’t read KJ’s reviews of books, you are missing out. Follow her on goodreads 🙂

Reader 3  4:18 PM

I liked the immediate connection between Cath and Rica and loved that Cath drove like a speed demon in Rica’s kick a#$ car!!

Reader 1 Today at 4:17 PM

If you had to pick a genre other than romance to write in, what would it be?

KJ  < 1 minute ago

I’m writing a psychological thriller/mystery at the moment. It’s incredibly difficult but I’m loving it.

Reader 5  2 minutes ago

Ooh, fun! If it’s not a spoiler, are you planning to add in magical/paranormal elements like in Art of Magic?

KJ  < 1 minute ago

No paranormal in this one. But it’s Felicity and Tal’s story. So there’s mention of Tal’s gift but only in passing. It’s not important to this story as much.

Reader 8 Today at 4:17 PM

I liked the way Cath was familiar with Rica’s art before they knew each other… which leads to two questions: 1) Have you ever had the experience of meeting an artist whose work you knew before you met them? and 2) Not a question, but a thank you for not leaving it for ages before Cath clued in to the link between Rica’s surname and the signature! 🙂

KJ  < 1 minute ago

:joy: Yep. Cath got it.

And no, I haven’t. That’s be awesome, though.

Reader 5 Today at 4:26 PM

When you’re working on something new, does the plot or the characters come to you first?

KJ  < 1 minute ago

Characters. Every time. I’m better at writing them.

Reader 2 Today at 4:22 PM

Did you always plan to write books in the same universe? I read Coming Home recently and adored it, and thought that Cath could do with her own book. Then….

KJ  < 1 minute ago

Yep. My WIP is Felicity and Tal’s story.

Reader 4 Today at 4:27 PM

Have you ever done anything with ESP?

KJ  4 minutes ago

I like to think I can see colours around people. I don’t know. But Art of Magic was my first foray into things beyond the norm.

Reader 9 Today at 4:29 PM

First thank you! Awesome book and the only thing that kept me sane this past week as we do our home renovation project I’m moving furniture even now. For my question, since you are such a creatively inclined  person in many ways, what songs do you think of or did you think of while writing? Or do you attribute to Rica and Cath? I always find myself signing songs or thinking of lyrics and wondered if you had a soundtrack to your books.

KJ  2 minutes ago

I feel bad when I answer this question when it pops up, because I know I surprise people when I say that I write in complete silence and I don’t attribute music to any character. :grimacing: I’m sorry!

Reader 9  < 1 minute ago

Oh no I get that completely! I have ADHD, if I tried to do work with music there would be work

Reader 1 Today at 4:28 PM

If all your characters were pulled into a superhero comic book world or a magical fantasy comic book world what would all their powers be?

KJ  < 1 minute ago

:exploding_head: That’s such a cool question. Well, Rica’s is there already. Cath? Probably the getaway driver.

Reader 2 Today at 4:30 PM

Are you as mad a driver as Cath? :laughing:

KJ  5 minutes ago

:joy::joy: I’m an excellent driver.

Reader 2  1 minute ago

Modest too

Reader 1 Today at 4:19 PM

Or what about writing for comics or graphic novels?

KJ  < 1 minute ago

I haven’t thought about that. I will now

Reader 3 Today at 4:34 PM

Do you plot out your stories?

KJ  < 1 minute ago

Oh my god. I’m the worst at plotting. I’m a complete pantster. Say that, however, my current work in progress is a mystery thriller thing and I HAVE to plot it.

Reader 2 Today at 4:38 PM

How did you decide to give Rica those calming / healing abilities?

KJ  < 1 minute ago

She told me to. I’m serious! My characters talk to me. Plus I knew I needed a character who was not just the complement to Cath’s personality but could find that part of Cath that was buried.

Reader 5 Today at 4:42 PM

The scene where Rica helps Cath discover her own abilities was like a full stop, put the book down and take a few breaths moment – it was so good

KJ  < 1 minute ago

thanks! Is that the ‘done of colour’ bit? That took AGES to write! I wanted to get it exact. Word choice, everything.

The nipplegasm scene was quicker to write, and fun, but again I had to get that right as well.

Reader 5 Today at 4:42 PM

What would you say your own influences are?

KJ  < 1 minute ago

e.e.cummings for his ability to say so much in so little text – he was like a poetic precursor to Twitter. Also other lesfic authors for sure.

Reader 8 Today at 4:49 PM

If you had to teach at the school: what subjects would you most wish you could teach? and what subjects would you want nothing to do with teaching?

KJ  < 1 minute ago

I’m a teacher by profession. :blush: Primary school for the majority of my career (so what Sam does) and English in secondary (Cath). I have taught visual art.

I could never teach Maths. I wouldn’t have the faintest idea.

Reader 2 Today at 4:50 PM

Is there a plan for an audiobook for Art of Magic? I experienced Coming Home through audio and thought the narrator did a great job, definitely complementing your story.

KJ  < 1 minute ago

I’d love to hire Ruth again. But it depends on finances. It’s incredibly expensive the way I do it because I insisted on an Australian narrator and that means independently hiring one, because the audio companies don’t have any. So we’ll see. Fingers crossed.

Reader 5 Today at 4:57 PM

Which of your books would you recommend for someone new to your catalog? Or which is your favorite that you’ve written, if it’s possible to choose? 🙂

KJ  < 1 minute ago

Probably Coming Home. It’s the most traditional contemporary romance.

My favourite? Each one for their own reasons. Learning to Swim is very very personal and it was my first.

Coming Home continues to surprise the heck out me.

Kick Back for its Aussie-ness

Art of Magic because first time in first person.

Reader 5 Today at 5:01 PM

Is it time for caffeine or more sleep, KJ?

KJ  < 1 minute ago

Both?!

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