The last couple of years have shown us that nothing stays the same. Unless you happen to be an author of fiction, where the prevailing wisdom errs on the side of producing a recognisable genre product to ‘build your brand’. At the time of writing, I’ve published five books, and whilst they all contain a rich vein of humour, none would be considered outright comedy. Until now.
That notorious couple of years, including pandemic horror and the spectre of loss, resulted in the desire for a more light-hearted approach. Added to that, I’ve always been a lover of fantasy and, to some extent, Young Adult fantasy, and have long wanted to swap the obligatory teen Chosen One for a woman of more mature years, like myself, complete with bodily woes, a truck load of past disappointments and a wise, if snarky, head on her shoulders.
Thus was born, A Wolf So Deep and Mangy, with even the title riffing off those YA staples. Out goes the flouncing, immature, but gorgeous teen, beautifully coming of age, and her staggeringly handsome beau. (Don’t get me started on the modern tendency for the love interest to be borderline abusive, redeemed by good looks and power – but that’s a blog for another day.) In comes grey hair, the menopause and sciatica. And I’ve not even touched on that infamous mangy wolf.
Whilst I’ve loved writing all my books, for different reasons, this one has been the most fun, probably because Edi(th) Breaker-Smith is the closest character to yours truly I’ve produced. In another first for me, I’ve written the narrative in first person present tense, jumping straight out of the baggage bound mind of Edi, with her incredulity at all those beloved fantasy tropes, such as instant love.
It’s been such a riot, that what started life as a novelty premise standalone has morphed into the prospect of a series of satires. I’m simply not ready to let go of this gaggle of off kilter, shape-shifting characters.
I’ll be adding a twist or two, though. Well it wouldn’t be one of my books otherwise, would it? I have a brand to uphold, after all.