Author Jess E. Owen: Soaring to crossover success in fantasy and mainstream YA fiction

by Patch O'Furr

Welcome to Jess E. Owen, author of noblebright fantasy, and optimistic contemporary Young Adult writing (as Jessica Kara), whose book A Furry Faux Paw caught the notice of Dogpatch Press with a 2022 Ursa Major Award for Best Novel.┬áIt’s the story of a teen girl artist with a hoarder mom, facing isolation and family complication with the promise of a forbidden trip to a furry con. It stood out for reaching outside a typical insider science fiction/fantasy audience, with gateway appeal by using fandom as a setting for character building. It stood out even more as a furry teen story in the face of conservative backlash at books. A Furry Faux Paw was seen on a mainstream channel, before it was obvious that she was a furry insider — that’s well-rounded exposure! In fact, she laughed about her pen name maybe being too successful at separation from her best known fantasy series starring gryfon characters, The Summer King Chronicles. Here’s a creator worth interviewing about how her work gets around, one you might see soon at Anthrocon 2024.

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