I would like to introduce my good and dear friend, Catherine Lundoff, the Goldie Award-winning author of the collections Night’s Kiss and Crave as well the short fiction collection A Day at the Inn, A Night at the Palace and Other Stories and the fantasy novel Silver Moon (www.catherinelundoff.com)

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Thank you for stopping by my blog and for being my inaugural Other Voices guest.

Questions:

1.     How would you characterize your fiction?  Are you writing for/to a particular audience or audiences?

I write in several genres: science fiction, fantasy, horror, romance and erotica, and with all that, I hope I am writing for a range of different audiences. Most of my protagonists are lesbians or bi women, which I think tends to pigeonhole my work into “lesbian fiction.” At the same time, I’ve had work reviewed poorly because it was marketed as “lesbian fiction,” and the reviewers felt that all lesbian fiction had to be romance and all my work didn’t fit comfortably into that category. Given those response, I think I write first for myself, since after all, I’ll likely be the reader spending the most time with the story, and second for the kind of readers who like work that’s just a bit different, work that falls outside some of the formulas that dominate genre fiction.

2.    Silver Moon, which has gotten a good bit of attention, including being an award finalist for the Goldie Awards and the first-ever Bisexual Book Awards, offers its readers an intriguing and arguably unique perspective on werewolves. “Women of a certain age” are the werewolves, yes?  Why and why is this significant and important?

Well, I’m a middle-aged woman myself and there are precious few of us appearing as protagonists in science fiction, fantasy or horror. I wanted to write a character that I could identify with. And amongst the joys of middle age, come a variety of physical changes not unlike those associated with transforming into a werewolf. I thought: why not? Most female werewolves in fantasy and horror are quite young, and the transformation is often keyed in with first or early menses. I wanted to deal with the other big physical “change in life,” and in doing so, apparently came up with something approaching an original idea. I was quite surprised that no one seems to have done it before me.

3.     I hear a sequel is in the works?  Any teasers?

Book 2 (working title: Blood Moon) is in progress as we speak and I’m planning a third book after that one. Then, we’ll see.

From Chapter 1 of Blood Moon (Women of Wolf’s Point 2):

Erin Adams looked out at the mountains and tried not to think about what was in the trunk of her car. At least the mountains around Wolf’s Point were still as beautiful as ever. She wondered if she’d ever get the chance to run through them again, feel the wind in her fur, the ground flying by under her paws. The Pack at her side.

That thought was enough to make her look back at her car. Erin rubbed her aching forehead with one hand and closed her eyes. This was, without question, the worst thing she’d ever done. Even if she couldn’t remember doing it.

But maybe there was still time to call Shelly and get her help to figure a way out of this mess that she’d blundered into. That was what Pack Alphas did, or so Shelly had always told her. But that might make Shelly an accessory if they got caught. When she got caught. The Pack couldn’t afford to be without its Alpha so soon after they got her back from the aspiring werewolf hunters of the Slayer’s Nest, not to mention what it would do to Pete and the kids.

 Maybe there was someone else. Her thoughts turned to Becca, waded through a jumbled mess of emotions and came back with a single realization: they’d suspect her first. Becca was her friend, her housemate. Her…something they still hadn’t defined, but which felt more like girlfriend every day.  Her stomach did a slow, leisurely flip when she thought about that and she almost smiled. But this wasn’t the time to think about Becca. She couldn’t afford to be distracted, to be vulnerable. Not now.

Whatever she did, she mustn’t call Becca. She couldn’t take the other woman down with her. Maybe there was another solution, a way to hide what had happened. But that would leave her to carry the burden of what she’d done, alone. And what if the body was found? The regular wolves would probably get blamed for it. Their state senator was already pushing for a hunting season on wolves; that would put things right over the top.

 She couldn’t think of any other Pack member who’d be able to do anything about this situation, not more than she could do herself, anyway. And it wasn’t the kind of thing she could call her sponsor about. So she was on her own. There was nothing for it but to lie in the bed she’d made for herself.

  She pulled her cell phone out of her pocket and dialed a number. “Hi. It’s Erin. I’ve done something…I need…can you come up to Spruce Point? Yes, it’s important. I want you to see it before Sheriff Henderson does.”

 She clicked the phone off and glanced toward the road. Nothing to do now but wait.

4.     What advice do you have for new and aspiring writers?

Learn to love rewriting. Then learn to recognize when to stop. Yes, I know: easier said than done. But the thing about creating something you can be proud of is that you have to revisit it again and again, to see its flaws, and see where it can be polished and fixed. Knowing when it’s done is more about “done for now,” the best you can do at this point in your writing. It will probably never seem perfect and it probably shouldn’t: there should always be room for, and recognition of, the need to improve. That said, that which is never submitted cannot be accepted. Send your work in when it’s the best you can do, and learn from the process.

5.    Is there a question you wish you would be asked and if so, what is the question and what is your answer?

Where do I see my writing going in terms of genre, style and theme? Mostly because I think having to answer questions like that would make me think harder about the overall direction of my work. Up until fairly recently, I hadn’t given it much thought: my process was to get inspired, write a thing and send it out. Now I’m transitioning from being a pantser to being an outliner in terms of my writing process, and writing longer rather than shorter pieces, I’m trying to plan longer term. I’ll let you know how it turns out, as soon as I know.

6.     Anything else you would like to say? Comment on?

Thank you so much for having me in as your first guest!

And thank you, Catherine, for agreeing to be my first guest and for stopping by and for your thoughtful and intriguing answers.

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