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Works in Progress

Coming March 1st!

Novel:An Empty Embrace
Release Date: March 1st, 2024
Available for Preorder or add it to your wishlist!
About the Author:When not caught up in his own personal fantasies about courageous heroes, flamboyant villains, or ancient magics, Cyril spends his time inches from a monitor playing videogames, trying to make his friends laugh with silly voices during D&D sessions, and flirting with his boyfriend to the point of obsession. As a trans-masculine nonbinary person, Cyril is passionate about the continued fight for bodily autonomy in all forms, intersectional justice for minorities, and opulent gothic fashion. The quickest way to get his attention is by mentioning vampires, but if you don’t have a few free hours to discuss the ins and outs of vampiric mythology it’s best not to bring it up at all.

Cyril’s Writing Journey and Inspirations

Cyril’s foray into the world of writing began in 2019, at the tender age of 24. What started as a personal outlet for self-expression soon blossomed into a deep and passionate journey, culminating in the creation of “An Empty Embrace.” Cyril shares, “Writing ‘An Empty Embrace’ helped me conceptualize the kinds of relationships I was interested in cultivating and held me through the heartbreak of a failed partnership.” But the depth of Cyril’s narrative doesn’t stop at personal catharsis; it dives into the realm of the gothic and the erotic, inspired by a lifelong fascination with the vampiric lore found in the works of Bram Stoker, Anne Rice, and Stephenie Meyer.

A pivotal moment that set the stage for “An Empty Embrace” was Cyril’s experience running a Dungeons and Dragons campaign titled Curse of Strahd. This endeavor ignited a desire to intertwine the elements of high fantasy with the shadowy allure of gothic horror, creating a rich, multi-layered narrative.

Q & A
What inspired you to blend high fantasy with gothic horror in An Empty Embrace?
My greatest inspiration came from running a homebrew version of the “Curse of Strahd” campaign. The thrill of merging high fantasy’s boundless imagination with gothic horror’s foreboding, emotional depth seemed like the perfect way to tell the stories I was yearning to tell.
How did you navigate incorporating erotic elements into a gothic horror narrative?
As easily a vampire seduces its prey. I’ve always been drawn to the darker side of the erotic as an exploration of desire. I love the theatrical intensity of a gothic romance but feel that many stories shy away from the more physical, carnal pleasures. I aimed to embrace these elements, fully and explicitly, especially when considering the unwarranted demonization of queer sexuality.
Can you discuss how your literary influences shaped your writing style and narrative choices?
I read and reread “Twilight” in my tween years, and it shows. Before that, the vampire Lestat de Lioncort held my fascination, but it all started in grade school when I found a copy of Bram Stoker’s “Dracula” in my school’s library. I admire all these authors for their ability to evoke the eerie, romantic, and often tragic elements of the gothic genre. However, I also wanted to carve out my own space, blending traditional gothic motifs with uninhibited, erotic themes and high fantasy’s limitless boundaries.
How has your personal journey influenced the characters and themes in your book?
Much of the emotional core of the book stems from my own experiences with relationships and the search for connection. The characters embody different facets of these desires and fears, making their journeys deeply personal, if not universally relatable.
What do you hope readers take away from An Empty Embrace?
I hope readers find themselves lost in the world I’ve created, connecting with the characters’ struggles, passions, and triumphs. I hope my queer and trans peers are comforted knowing that another voice in the sea of voices stands in solidarity with them. But more than anything, I want to share the beauty that can be found in the dark, the erotic, and the mystical. And, perhaps I’ll inspire others to explore their own boundaries and desires.

Join us in celebrating Cyril Mezden’s “An Empty Embrace,” a novel that promises to whisk readers away to a world where the boundaries of fantasy and horror blur, creating a mesmerizing tapestry of dark romance and adventure.