**Heads up: this article contains discussion of domestic violence and violence against trans...
Writer Spotlight: Necko Fanning
When BlakeWrites put out its first call for submissions, Necko Fanning was one of the first proposals I received. Right away, Necko and I just clicked. We realized that we had similar communication styles, writing goals, ambitions, and personal interests. In short, we just clicked. Working together over the last year, Necko and I have become close friends, and I'm thrilled to have him as a part of the BlakeWrites team.
I've had the fortune of getting to know Necko, and we wanted to share that good fortune with each of you.
Where are you from?
I'm originally from Montana. I grew up in Wolf Point, Montana on the Fort Peck reservation. I lived in Chicago for about two and a half year until recently I relocated to Ann Arbor to finish my degree. My heart is still in Chicago if I'm being honest.
What do you do in your free time?
I'm so unexciting it's almost sad: I love reading anything SF / Fantasy, comic books, or LGBTQ+/diversity oriented; I workout (begrudgingly), play Nintendo Switch with my boyfriend, and I'm involved with a lot of veteran's groups through the University of Michigan.
What are your favorite topics to write about?
Nerd culture and masculinity. I feel that these are two fields that often don't get their "hay-day". Nerd culture is so important to me because it's really where I found my first group of like-minded friends in the gay community. And in today society, talking about masculinity has never been more important. In our shifting political and social climates it can be difficult to misconstrue masculinity with "bad", and doubly so to really separate positive masculinity with hyper- or toxic masculinity.
Are there any blogs, podcasts, or vlogs that you can't get enough of?
Anything LGBT related I love but currently, I've been listening to a lot of "The Brain" and the New Yorker's Fiction section.
What's something you've written or worked on that you're particularly proud of?
Well, in my "off-time" I write a lot of fiction myself that focuses on LGBT protagonists. I've just finished my latest novel about a world of witches at war and I couldn't be prouder of it. Aside from that I'm proud of everything I've published through BlakeWrites! In particular, I think "Living With the Land or Conquering It" was a challenging piece that I had to work extra hard to create. I'm very proud of the final product!
What would your dream job be and why?
Author / Editor. I know in the publishing world people often try to keep these two separate but there's just so much that I love about literature that I don't know how I'm supposed to pick just one. There are so many incredible people with incredible ideas out there. Being able to workshop their writing and help them better themselves as writers would just be so rewarding on a daily basis. But, then again, I don't think all my ideas are that terrible either!
Why do you write?
I don't know how to pin it down to just one thing. Writing started out as an escape and a way for me to learn about the world around me. I'd read a book and fall in love with the characters so much that I'd want to create my own stories. At first, it was simply a way of coping with my environment. But then I realized how much I was learning about people while I was writing. To truly write about something you have to develop some knowledge of it. Which require research. The hardest things to write about are people. So, my research has always been very interaction based. Because of these interactions, I've learned the power of writing and also what's missing from it. I use writing as a place to open discussions, to defend others, and to (hopefully) create those fictitious hero's we all need to read to become the people we are.
What do you hope readers get out of your work?
I hope readers get insight, laughs, and enjoyment from my work. My focus is always either to inform or entertain (sometimes both when the subject-matter allows for it). I hope my readers look away from their screens feeling like they have something to mull over, or at least that they've gained something from having taken the time to read my work.
We have to ask... boxers or briefs?
Anything else you'd like BlakeWrites' readers to know about you?