Today I am interviewing Nathan Crowder, author of the new novel, Ties that Bind.
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DJ: Hi Nathan! Thanks for agreeing to do this interview!
For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?
Nathan Crowder: I started off writing poetry. Just awful poetry. From there, I tried writing horror short fiction. Now, to be fair, I was in junior high/high school, and it was all bad and not remotely scary. I’m thankful my parents gave me encouragement and freedom to suck at something for a while so I could learn how to be GOOD at it. Everything I’ve achieved as a writer has been a result of that, despite the fact I don’t think they ever really got what I was writing about.
DJ: What is Ties that Bind about?
Nathan: Short answer, Ties that Bind is about human trafficking. Fun! Longer answer, it is about three women: one a wealthy dilettante hero, one a compromised, hard-scrabble vigilante trying to make up for her father’s sins, and one is the right hand for Cobalt City’s premier crime family. It’s about them confronting their privilege and complicity in the very real world of human trafficking, and how they can make a stand.
DJ: What were some of your influences for Ties the Bind?
Nathan: A few years ago, there was a flurry of news articles and first-person narratives from people who had escaped human trafficking. I was troubled that the reality of trafficking and human slavery was far more widespread and ignored than I’d ever realized. It’s an institution, a multi-billion dollar industry, and it’s right under our noses but we never think to question it. As is often my way, when I find out about this kind of injustice, my brain wishes there were heroes to step up and fight it head-on. It’s kind of a central theme of mine. So I considered which heroes I had kicking around Cobalt City who would make the most compelling lenses to view the situation through. Continue reading