How do you make your werewolves stand out? Take away their meat. What an interesting idea. Here is Karenna Colcroft to talk a little about where the concept came from, and what it took to make it work.
Real Werewolves WHAT?
The cool thing about writing paranormal is that you get to make up your own rules. Of course, the flip side to that is that you have to make sure you follow those rules consistently. Otherwise, readers will thump you.
In my series Werewolves Don’t Eat Meat, I’ve developed an entire governmental structure for my werewolves; everything from individual pack structure to who runs the show for all the packs in the United States. And I’ve also created a werewolf who, as the series title implies, doesn’t eat meat.
Wolves eat meat. Werewolves, definitely, whether they’re in wolf form or human. According to the universe I’ve set up, werewolves can die if they don’t have enough protein, because they need the additional protein and other nutrients to fuel their shifts and their heightened metabolism. But Kyle Slidell, the main character of my series, was vegan before he was changed into a werewolf, and he’s just stubborn enough to continue refusing meat, even when he’s in wolf form. Fortunately, there are other sources of protein available to vegans, but it took a lot of research (and nudging from my editor) to figure out exactly what Kyle eats.
The whole thing started when a writer friend of mine asked, in reference to a heterosexual romance, how a werewolf could be vegan. Kyle and his mate Tobias Rogan, the pack Alpha, jumped into my brain to answer that question in a short scene. Not long afterward, when MLR Press editor goddess Kris Jacen issued a challenge for scenes involving whipped cream, Kyle and Tobias made a return visit to my head, and that was all it took.
The Real Werewolves Don’t Eat Meat series now includes two full-length novels, Salad on the Side and Veggie Burgers to Go, with the third novel, Hummus on Rye, tentatively scheduled for a July 27 release. There’s also a Christmas story, Tofurkey and Yams, which was released before Veggie Burgers but in the series timeline takes place between Veggie Burgers and Hummus on Rye. I have two more novels planned. All books are available from MLR Press.
The series has also spun off into a heterosexual romance series (as yet untitled), which follows some of the men in the City Pack, the Boston-based pack which neighbors the pack Kyle and Tobias belong to. For those who read hetero romance, the first novel in this series, Beta Test, was released in June from MLR’s sister imprint, Passion in Print. And the wolves have also spun off into a young adult series, tentatively titled Growing Up Shifter, which follows Tobias from his change at age fifteen until he becomes Alpha of the Boston North Pack. The first novel in that series, Fresh Meat, is tentatively scheduled for release sometime in the fall of 2012.
I hope readers have as much fun reading about my werewolves as I have writing about them. If you have questions or thoughts about my wolves, I’d love to talk to you in October at GayRomLit.
Karenna is offering up a chance to see how this series got started. Please comment below for a chance to win an e-book from her Werewolves Don’t Eat Meat series. Vegan or meatlover? Let us know your favorite vegetarian dish.
Open until Thursday, July 26th at 11:59 pm (PST). Winner will be selected and notified on Friday.