Bite Club welcomes Teresa D'Amario today, who talks about some of our favorite kinds of shapeshifters and what makes a story real—even when it's not real.
Women who turn into tigers, men who turn into wolves. Hidden compounds of creatures who are half men and half animal. The man you hire to work on your broken heater isn't really a man. He's wolven. Believable? Not really. And yet, authors have created worlds everyone loves to read, worlds where creatures that don't exist make our hearts pound in anticipation of the next page.
How is it any author, myself included, can create such creatures and make them believable enough for you, the reader, to use it to escape the world of today?
A taste of reality. Truly, that's the real reason the shifter and vampire worlds work. When you read of the fangs piercing the neck of his mate, or when tear through the words at record pace to see what happens when he truly shifts into the animal he hides inside, it's reality that keeps you there. It's reality that makes you believe.
The reality of the weaknesses of those animals. The strength of they hide within them. The understanding that the animal natures are little more than an extension of what we believe is possible in humans. A blending of human and animal to give us the ultimate in the paranormal romance heroes (and yes, in some respects the vampire is also grounded in reality). If I took a werewolf and made him fly, you'd have problems with that. Why? Because it's not grounded in reality. Canines can't fly. But if I have a canine able to smell your every mood, to track the most hidden foe, you can believe that. It's grounded in reality. Wolves have a better sense of smell than any canine except the bloodhound, so we can understand that being transferred to the werewolf.
Once I was reading a book with a dog in it, named Chance. Chance was a great dog. He could read moods, and was always there when needed. Then I got up, got myself a snack, and came back. I picked up my kindle and suddenly Chance was an angel. Now I found that to be a huge stretch. It wasn't grounded in reality. It wasn't grounded in the world of the book. It turned out I'd inadvertently CHANGED books and was instead reading a teaser of another book from a previously completed novel. (Yes kindles can do that when you aren't looking). But because the scenes didn't mesh with reality, I couldn't believe it. It's that reality that makes us enjoy the book without stopping and thinking "I'm sorry, I just can't believe that."
It's imperative for the author to ground their stories in the real. In what a canine is capable of. What the mind can wrap itself around. And as such, we research. We read, and we visit wolves in zoos, or as in one recently, tigers. We get the feel of those animals in ways we never could without it, and we translate that to the page. It's real. It's the way the world is, and as such, you the reader can enjoy it.
So when you read Blood Moon Betrayed, and reading about fangs sliding into his gums, hair sprouting over his arms, bones stretching, snapping, and locking into place, you'll be like the rest of us and be so lost in the story that the unbelievable won't matter. All because the unreal is grounded in the real.
Sean left his pack, searching for an inner peace destroyed when his one daughter was shot and the other kidnapped and tortured. Not to mention his mate had left him. He gave up his position as pack leader and headed out to the woods. But when he found a woman being beaten by two humans, he is jolted by the realization she's his True mate.
Caden lives in fear, and at last her terror has caught up with her. Her ex-husband has decided it's time for her to die. Just as she's about to breathe her last, a man tells her everything is going to be okay.
But how can it be, when her ex-husband still wants her dead?
And once Sean brings her back to his home, secrets are revealed, and it seems no one is going to be okay. For as the blood moon rises in the October sky, betrayal is in the wind, and upon it floats the scent of death.
Home Page: http://teresadamario.com
Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Teresa-DAmario/56021380226?ref=sgm
Twitter address: @teresadamario