So just who is Jan Stryvant?
Who am I and what do I write?
First off I do not write 'Harem'. I write Men's Action and Adventure Stories. THAT is what I write. Yes, a fair bit of stuff that I write as 'Jan Stryvant' (more on that below) has 'Harem' aspects to it. But it's not primarily harem. It's action adventure with a strong male lead. I also like to have strong female leads and love interests. I'm not a fan of 'cardboard cutout' characters and especially not for the women in the story either. So why are there harem aspects in the story? Because it was fun. Because it helped move the story where I wanted it to go, because I have a fairly large fanbase (of both Men and Women) who enjoy my putting it in stories. Also I'd like to point out that when the reverse is done in Romance stories for women audiences No One Complains. As for the spicy or explicit scenes in the books? It was brought home very clearly to me that in this day and age the readers expect it. Hell, if they still did telephone books these days you can bet there'd be a sex scene in them. My only goal has to stay away from just pure gratuitous ones (Well, Dan's Inferno had a bunch of those, or at least I tried to make them that way - but then that series was fan service for a bunch of folks who'd been very kind to me - plus it was fun to do that for once).
In short, I write to entertain and I write primarily for men. I'd forever happy and grateful to my women readers, who are legion, but most writers these days are women and most books are written for women (in the fiction arena) so I felt it was only fair to write something for an audience that is underserved and often ignored.
As for WHO I am? First off, I'm older than I look (Well at least in most pictures!) and I've been around. A lot. I was in the service after college. I have an engineering degree, I've worked in aerospace (defense), medicine (research) and industry (test & measurement). I ended up a program manager and in management. I have some very different hobbies. I used to own, raise, and train big cats. So yes I like big cats. I've had a few. I've also dealt with other wild animals in and out of captivity (my sadly now deceased ex had something of a menagerie that I managed on the side for years). I used to be very into cars and wrenched on a lot of them. I still wrench on motorcycles. I'm a licensed pilot (though not current right now). I've taught scuba, martial arts (Kenpo), and a lot of other stuff. One of my hobbies is making guitars. The list goes on and on. There's other things as well, but I typically won't talk about those in public.
Yes, Jan Stryvant (pronounced YON Strī-vant) is my pen name.
Back in 2017, I decided that I wanted to write stuff that was different than what I had become known for. But I knew, from experience, that there would be issues if I did so. My 'brand' avoids certain themes, and yes, I tend to avoid detailed sex scenes (because of certain advice from back when I started out). So I told my fans on my blog that I would be starting a second 'brand' under the name of 'Jan Stryvant'.
Yes, if you do a search, or even just look at the name, it isn't all that hard to figure out who I really am because I honestly never intended it to be. It's just a different 'brand' from the same author (me). If you like the stuff I write under one 'brand' you'll probably like the stuff under the other. Unless of course sex scenes bother you. Or if the lack of them bothers you.
Also, I wanted to try and branch out more into LitRPG, because I'd been reading a lot of it and found that I was really enjoying it. The Valens' Legacy series has some LitRPG aspects to it, as well as a fair bit of 'Harem'. One of these days I may just write a more hardcore LitRPG story. Because as a genre, it's pretty cool (and I've played a LOT of RPG games, including online ones). My first big series under my real name was very much based on table top RPG game and used to be considered LitRPG, but with the prominence of MMORPG's it got moved out of that category.
So that's how I ended up with Jan Stryvant, because I wanted to write something different, but I was afraid if I didn't separate it somehow, there'd be issues and grief and all of that. Yes, maybe a smarter man could have figured out a better way around it, but I didn't. I also didn't expect things to go as well as they have for Jan Stryvant, but as writing the Valens stories has been a blast, I'm kind of happy with it.
Still want to know who I really am?
My real name is John Van Stry. I'm a SF&F author, best known for my Portals of Infinity series. If you've enjoyed my stuff written under my Pen Name, you might wish to look at that as well.
If you have any other questions, by all means drop me an email, and I will try answer them, when I can.