Meet my character: Flynn Keahi from “Happiness and Other Diseases”

About The Meet My Character Blog Tour:

IndieReconNomineeI was invited to participate in the Meet My Character blog tour by Emmy Z. Madrigal, the author of Sweet Dreams.  Her blog is and you can meet her character, Rob Malloy there. He’s been nominated for an award at IndieReCon for Best Book Boyfriend, if you care to vote for him. Emmy asked for participants with something romance related, and I have a Dark Romance / Paranormal Romance kind of Dark Fantasy coming out, Happiness and Other Diseases, so I bit.

My blog’s topic is dark speculative fiction, focusing on horror, although I also write about dark fantasy, and apocalyptic and/or dystopic science fiction and other types of dark sci-fi.

Happiness and Other Diseases is also up for an IndieReCon Howey award, for Best Cover.

Meet the Character

Answer these questions about your main character from a WIP (work in progress)Happiness 5

Q.  What is the name of your character?  

A. Flynn Keahi

Q. Is he/she fictional or a historic person?  

A. He’s a fictional character. He’s in his mid-twenties, born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, Asian/Pacific Islander. He works at temp agencies at computer graphics and desktop publishing gigs. He loves video games. He’s a nice guy who has had a difficult life. He’s really easy going and patient with others, but he has a history of mental illness and self-esteem problems. Maybe he is more understanding towards others because he’s been through so much.

Q. When and where is the story set?

A. It’s a dark fantasy that takes place in two places. Part of it is set on Earth in the San Francisco Bay Area, mostly in Berkeley, California. The other part takes place in the Demos Oneiroi, which is a part of the underworld in Greco-Roman mythology where the dream deities reside. Because my central protagonists, Flynn Keahi and Charlotte Metaxas, are both diagnosed with mental illnesses and meet in a psychiatric hospital, there is a slight blurring of lines between the fantasy worlds and things that could be imagined, This gets cleared up pretty quickly.

It takes place sometime between the start of the recession in 2008 and the present.

Q. What should we know about him/her?

A. He’s had a hard time getting stable since he started to hallucinate and was diagnosed with bi-polar disorder in his late teens. Getting sick forced him to drop out of college. He was homeless for several years. He’s just starting to get back on his feet again when supernatural enemies begin to interfere. He’s also pretty kinky, which is to say, he’s submissive and masochistic and he feels very embarrassed about his sexual proclivities. He’s uptight about his sexuality, but extremely laid back about just about everything else. He’s reached a point in his life where he is trying to accept himself and reach out to others.

Q. What is the main conflict? What messes up his/her life?

A. He has to deal with internal and external conflicts.

In terms of internal conflict, mental illness has previously disrupted his life. He’s just getting back on his feet again and is afraid of a relapse and things falling apart. Before we meet him, he has had to drop out of college, and has been homeless. Now he rents a cheap place in Vallejo, a lower rent part of the overpriced Bay Area. Vallejo is practically next door to Napa, where we just had the Bay Area’s biggest earthquake in twenty five years. He works temporary jobs through agencies.

Because of his history, no one takes him seriously when he begins to experience problems of a supernatural nature. The Greco-Roman pantheon messes up his life. One of the dream deities who live in the Demos Oneiroi has been tormenting him in his sleep. When some of the gods intervene on his behalf, things get very messy. His fate becomes entangled in their conflict. They send a demigoddess named Charlotte to protect him, and the two of them fall in love.

Q. What is the personal goal of the character?

A. He just wants to have a normal life. Find a girl, hold down a job, maybe settle down and get married and have kids. He wants all of those things he thought he could have before he got sick. Now, he feels like he’s damaged and that they will all be difficult, maybe impossible to attain. Charlotte is in some ways a bit insensitive because she isn’t entirely human. She comes on too strong, and she’s a little intense. But her love for him is in some ways very ordinary. He wants that. He wants to be loved and accepted. His struggle with her is, can be accept the love of someone who is really less sensitive than he is. I think their courtship is very role-reversed.

He also wants to be noble and heroic, like the characters in the games he plays. He has a very nurturing attitude towards others, but he’s not that great at taking the best care of himself. Charlotte is very protective towards him, so in a way, she plays that knight in shining armor role. She’s worried about him because she thinks he gives himself away too easily. 

Q.  Is there a working title for this novel, and can we read more about it?

A. It’s called Happiness and Other Diseases. Here’s the book description:

Flynn Keahi has had a rough year. His nightmares are starting to manifest in reality, but no one believes him. Terrifying creatures are trying to cross out of dreams into the physical realm. Only Flynn can stop them – but doing so might cost him his life. Complicating matters further, one of these creatures cannot help wanting him — in every forbidden way. Will she be able to save him from his fate? Can she even protect him from herself?

It has a Facebook page here : 

Q. When can we expect the book to be published?

It’s coming out October 18, 2014. You can preorder the eBook on Amazon, and soon on Barnes and Noble and Kobo as well. You can pick up hardcover or paperback editions on the day of publication. If you’re local to the Bay Area, there is book release party at The Dark Entry in Berkeley.

Next Week’s Meet the Character Authors

Serena Toxicat

Serena Toxicat slinks across the dimensions as a writer, translator, singer, dancer, actor, model,  painter, tattoo collector, peer counselor, group leader, cat socializer, NLP life coach, psychic reader, energy healer, and ordained priestess in the Fellowship of Isis. Published in anthologies and magazines, she wrote the books “Evangeline and the Drama Wheel” and “Paper Wings,” and award winning plays and poems in English and French. Her parallel recording projects are Starchasm and Catbox Theory.

Selah Janel

Selah Janel has been blessed with a giant imagination since she was little. The many people around her that supported her love of reading and curiosity probably made it worse. She writes in all genres, though she favors all types of fantasy and horror. Selah has three e-books through Mocha Memoirs Press, a short story collection published with SH Roddey, and her work has appeared in various magazines and anthologies. Her new book Olde School, is the first in the Kingdom City Chronicles series and is out now

Paula Ashe

A writer of dark fiction, Paula resides in the Midwest with her wife and too many pets. She has published a number of short stories, a novella, and two academic papers in two anthologies. She teaches creative writing, freshman composition, argument, and world literature at a community college. Paula is also a PhD student in the American Studies Program at Purdue University. She has a BA in Creative Writing (minor in Psychology), and an MA in Composition and Rhetoric (Women’s Studies graduate certificate) from Wright State University. While free time is fleeting, Paula finds time for horror movies, loud music, black feminism, and all things Hellraiser.

Elva Nelson-Hayes

Elva Nelson Hayes is a native of Oakland California. She is the author of The Unnamed , The Island Love Song, and is currently working on her third book Love Lost and Lessons Learned. She hosts an annual literary event called The Ladies of Literature which promotes literacy and highlights women who write in Oakland and the Bay Area.  She is the founder of a book club called The Oakland Page Turners. She produces and hosts a local literary-themed television show called ‘Today’s Community Spotlight.’

Elisabeth Delana Rosa

Elizabeth Delana Rosa has always been a writer. When she first learned to write in kindergarten, she wrote about pigs who “groo” wings and became “butterfys.” She knew back then she would have a love affair with writing. Now that love flows over into writing blogs, reviews, poems and fantasy novels. Elizabeth is a big nerd. She loves Fantasy, YA, Paranormal Romance, and Sci-Fi books. Her dream is to promote authors and help them succeed, while writing her own YA and NA Fantasy Novels


~ by Sumiko Saulson on August 26, 2014.

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