Sunday, July 24, 2011

Making a Werewolf

For those of you who have read my novel Lovestruck Succubus you know that the story begins with Azra's quest to find a loving relationship like the mortals she feeds upon with each attempt ending in death of the mortal man ... until she's cornered by Raif, but he's not so mortal.

Those of you who have not read the novel, might I suggest you give it a try.

What's Raif's secret to survival against Azra? Why, he's a werewolf, of course! He is a werewolf of my own making - more of a were shapeshifter, but in my mind, a werewolf nonetheless. Where did this strange shapeshifting were come from? The answer is simple. years of myth and legend.

A little werewolf history ...

Werewolves, in their current form have been around since the medieval times or the dark ages. Wolves became so large and overpopulated that unbelieving souls would think they had to be some kind of half-human half-wolf creature that would steal their livestock, and children, in the night.

Werewolves remained popular in children's fables and literature but real popularity came in 1935, when Universal made the movie "Werewolf of London" the first werewolf horror film. Back then, Werewolves were restricted to shifting during full moons, and could be taken out by a silver bullet. Really anything with silver was believed to work. In fact, The Werewolf in "Werewolf of London" was killed with a silver-tipped cane.

Nowadays, Werewolves can be beastly creatures, or humanoids with the ability to shift whenever they desire. In the Twilight series, Jacob was more of a were-shifter than a Werewolf. I like the depiction of the Werewolf as a shapeshifter able to shift into full-wolf form at will. Some people will disagree, but I like that Werewolves have been shown as teenagers, survivalists, and even romantic heroes and heroines in the recent past.

My Werewolf, my way ...

In my Immortal Desires series, Werewolves come in two classes. First, there are the naturals - those Werewolves born of other Werewolves. Second, are the ferals - those werewolves that began their life like everyone else, and were turned into a Werewolf through some form of blood transfer from another Werewolf.

I like the distinction because I believe that there is no such things as a classless society. There will always be the haves, and the have-nots, The oppressed, and the oppressors. Of course, I designed a flaw in my Werewolf class system. For instance, what if a natural creates a feral, and later, that feral has a child with another feral or natural - doesn't much matter at this point. That child would be a natural. Yes, I know this may create tension and conflict within my Werewolf society, but that is what makes a great story.

Family lineage is very important in my Werewolf society. The Alpha is normally determined through succession and is mated to a female of equal lineage. The mating is usually through arrangement between families, and is binding for the rest of their Werewolf lives. Which brings me to my next thought. My werewolves have immortal abilities but they age and die like mortals.

How can my Werewolves be killed? Well, not by a single silver bullet, but they can be killed. You'll just have to read my series to find out how. How they are killed (before their natural time) has much to do with how they were originally created.

How were my Werewolves created, you might ask? Think Van Helsing, Bram Stoker's Dracula, and Underworld thrown into a blender and left on frappe for a minute or two.

Now, be careful reading here. Because if you think too hard, you might just see my future series come full-circle before the remaining books are completed.

My Werewolves, Shapeshifters, however you choose to label them, were created in ancient times by Demons. Yes, Azra, my Demon Succubus, is part of those beings that created the first Werewolf. Demons created a kind of virus that they put into just a couple of humans in a time few can remember. They did this in attempt to rid the world of humans, Why, because the world was once populated by Spirits. Some call them Angels. When humans came along, some of these Angels took on the task of controlling human population and growth. The Demons were not happy with the task they had been given and figured, if they could be really efficient in ridding the Earth of mortals, they would again, be allowed to reclaim their status as Angels. They figured the best way to get rid of mortals was to get them to kill each other off.

Only, their plan did not work as well as they thought. the Lycanthropic virus they created simply did not propagate quickly enough and the Werewolf population never gained a strong foothold. So, The Demons just tolerated the Werewolf ever since. And, since the Werewolf was created by Demons, they were, for the most part, immune to some of the Demon powers.

My Werewolves do have the ability to shift at will, and in any form between human and wolf. The first shift occurs on the first full moon after infection. On this first shift, my characters shift into full wolf form and must hunt and take their first kill. From this point on, my Werewolves will need to shift occasionally and hunt in order to tame their wild nature. When they try to withhold the shift, it can happen slowly and painfully. If they plan to shift into full wolf form (the form they take in order to run fast or hone in on prey by smell alone) must remove their clothing or it will be ripped from their bodies.

Sex? Yes, please. My Werewolves can have sex just like a normal person, but they have the option of shifting into any form from human to wolf during the act. Nothing like a little freaky Werewolf sex to liven things up.

So, there it is, Werewolves as I see them. Werewolves interacting with Demons, or at least, one Demon Succubus. If you think you might like my brand of Werewolf, Try my novel. And, please, if you like it, let me know. I love to interact with readers. In fact, one reader told me they were interested in the relationship between Joe and Lexi Johnson, my tracker/hunter team of Werewolves. The comment grew into a story idea, and soon I will publish the story of how Alexis and Joseph met and fell in love.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Women of Strength

“It is our choices that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.” – J.K. Rowling

I like the above quote, and I know that J.K. Rowling has had to make her share of character-defining choices. The writing of her first Harry Potter novel was interrupted in 1990 by the death of her mother. A marriage lasting only three years left her a single parent living on assistance by the end of 1993. She suffered from depression, even contemplated suicide at one point, but continued to write. Her real success did not come until 1997 when the publisher, Scholastic, brought her novels to the vast American market. Joanne Rowling made her choices from a position of strength. Her actions, then and now, show a strength of character worthy of emulation.

Sarah Buel, co-founder and co-director of the National Training Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence, did not just happen into this position. After escaping a life of domestic violence, Sarah could have just gone away, and lived her life in obscurity. She chose instead to become an attorney to better help battered women and abused children. In addition to performing her duties with the Center, she continues to run a legal clinic for battered women.

The two women mentioned above are truly worthy of mention, and serve as a beacon of strength, but I would submit that a countless number of women you might never hear of display strength. Who is it that you would like to emulate? I think that many of you would agree with me in my choice of example in how to be strong, and make choices that strengthen character.

I grew up in a poor family but rarely went without food, clothing, and school supplies. Unknown to me until much later in life, my mother’s strength and sacrifice shielded me from such suffering. One year, we all (I have a brother and a sister) had to purchase used shoes at the local Salvation Army Thrift Store, along with our usual back-to-school clothing purchases. Although our clothing was mostly second-hand, we had always gotten new shoes each year for the start of school. We later found out that Mom used the money saved to buy a used freezer from a neighbor. Of course, we did not understand this at the time, and were deeply hurt.
We later realized that the freezer allowed Mom to buy food in bulk, and therefore, at a cheaper price. Like I said before, we seldom went hungry, and we later knew it was because our Mom sacrificed much more than just one year’s worth of new shoes. She had sold some of her precious heirloom jewelry to buy that freezer. She spent our youth making tough choices to shield us from the harsh realities of our destitution. Many times since then, Mom served as a guidepost for my own choices, and I know that I could never thank her enough in my one lifetime for her choices, her sacrifices, her strength. Rest her soul.
Women of strength are inspiring. Women who are faced with difficult choices that determine their character are intriguing. These traits I found so desirable in Joanne Rowling, Sarah Beul, and my own dear Mother, that they became the basis for my main character, Azra, in my novel, Lovestruck Succubus.
I wanted to show Azra as a women of strength and unwavering determination in her quest to experience love as a normal, mortal person. Of course, I could not make it easy. I threw numerous roadblocks in front of her like being pursued by a police detective, bounty hunters, and finally, her own need for sustainment. In the end, I would hope that her actions proved her a woman of strength, and a role model, like my Mother, others would honor and emulate.

If you like stories about women of strength, a heroinne that does not need saving, please give my paranormal erotic novel, Lovestruck Succubus, a try. Download it from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Smashwords, or buy it in paperback.
Also, look for my other stories, Pleasure Doing Business or Window Treatment at all the above locations. Or, Download my short story, The Fifth Beauty for FREE from Smashwords or Barnes & Noble. You can also find my stories at Apple ibooks, Sony, Kobo, and Diesel Books.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Author Interview With LK Watts.

Today I would like to highlight a new author on the scene. Laura Watts is the author of the wonderful book: Confessions of a Backpacker: My Adventure Down Under. Laura wrote a kind of travelling memoir of her time living and working in Australia. It's a good read, funny, poignant, and even heart wrenching at times. Here's a few questions Laura answered so we can all get to know her a little better:

1. When did you realize you wanted to become a writer?
When my travelling days were over and I decided I wanted to write a book about my experiences. It was only as I began to write that I realised how much I actually enjoyed the process, and decided to write other books.
2. Is this the only job you’ve had?
I wish it was! I’ve done quite a few things from working in a psychiatric ward to working in pubs. My favourite job other than this has been working in a library.
3. Have other work experiences made you more determined to follow a writing career?
Definitely. There’s nothing quite so satisfying as working for yourself. You’re the one in control; you don’t have to answer to anyone else. That’s the best bit.
4. What genre do you write?

At the moment I am currently writing a memoir about my days travelling Canada. My first book is also a memoir about travelling Australia and New Zealand.
5. Have you written under more than one genre?

No, not yet but I plan to do so. After my current book I want to take a break from writing so I can spend more time reading different kinds of books to decide what genre I want to write in next.
6. Where do you get your inspiration for writing?
Everywhere! I have a very active imagination which is the best thing to have while writing, but it can be frustrating when I want to switch off my brain to go to sleep. As for getting inspiration for my first books, I kept a detailed diary of both travelling accounts.
7. Do you ever dream of your next book?

I don’t think I ever sleep enough to dream! Sometimes I’ll have dreams, which will inspire stories to go into my next book, but I don’t ever dream about the actual book.
8. Describe the highlight of your writing career.

Definitely selling books on Amazon. That has been fantastic.
9. Have there ever been moments where you’ve wanted to give up?

Absolutely not. This has been one of best things to ever happen to me. I am not giving up on it at all.
10. What’s been the worst thing to happen to you regarding your writing?

I think the stress of having to constantly market, it’s never ending. I didn’t realise at the time when I was writing how much work I would have to do after releasing the book.
11. Have you always believed in yourself, or have you let negative comments get you down?

I take no notice of nasty comments if they are just meant to be spiteful. Constructive criticism is another matter entirely, I can listen to that no problem because I can learn from past mistakes.
12. Who is the author you’d most like to be and why?

I like being me, even if I don’t sell millions of books. I’m very proud of my achievement. I didn’t know at first whether I would come this far.
13. Can you name the drawbacks to being a writer?

Definitely! The lack of time for doing anything else with your life.
That’s why if you want to become a writer you must enjoy it because you don’t have a lot of time for anything else. That’s a major downside if you have a family.
14. What’s your typical writing day?

Well, I usually work a 6-7 day week. I’m always doing something. Most of the time I write in the mornings and then spend the rest of the afternoon marketing. I sometime work at night too, depending on what I am doing. Sometimes I’ll market for the whole of the day, other days I’ll spend mostly writing. It’s pretty full on.
15. What’s the most outrageous thing you’ve ever done?

You’ll have to read my first book to find that one out!
16. What do you do when you finish writing a book?

Have a glass of wine to celebrate, and try to have a day to myself to relax a bit. Then it’s straight on to my next book.
17. Do you hire an editor or do you do that job yourself?

I hire a professional editor, I wouldn’t want to publish anything if it wasn’t edited to a high standard. It can be a costly process but I believe every penny is worth it in the long run.
18. What do you do when you receive criticism of your work?

Take it on board if it’s constructive. Otherwise, if it’s nasty I just ignore it.
19. What’s your best tip for other writers?
Listen to constructive criticism. You’re never going to learn otherwise.

20. What’s been the most helpful advice you’ve ever received?

To do plenty of research on the topics you want to know. If you plan and research, you’ll do well.

Please support this author and take a look at her book: Confessions of a Backpacker: My Adventure Down Under

It's so easy to give the book a chance at just $0.99 USD by following any of the links below.

Amazon (US)
Amazon (UK)

Visit Laura's Blog:
LK Watts Confessions