Today I’m sitting down with Terry Spear and talking about her new Heart of the Wolf novel, A Highland Werewolf Wedding.
On The Run…
After werewolves Elaine Hawthorn and Cearnach MacNeill almost have a head-on collision on a foggy Highland road, they’re pretty well stuck with each other. It’ll be hours before anyone can get there to pull his car out of the ditch and they both have better places to be.
And Nowhere to Hide From Each Other…
The sexy little American brings out all of Cearnach’s big bag protective instincts. If she thought she was in trouble before, Elaine has no idea what kind of complications a hot Scot can cause…
Make sure you stick around to the end. We’ll be giving away a copy of A Howl for a Highlander.
Literary Escapism: I know you’re asked this a lot, but what is the Heart of the Wolf series? Can you give us a glimpse into this fantastical world you created?
Terry Spear: It’s all about hot, sexy, protective, loyal werewolves, some in packs, some loners, some bad guys, many good guys, the kind of men you want to take home to Momma, as long as you’re a werewolf, too. They come as Highland wolves and SEAL wolves, and Arctic wolves, and the Silver Brothers. They’re in a class of their own. They believe in HEA. Mating for life. Loving for a lifetime. How can you beat that?
LE: Why Elaine and Cearnach in A Highland Werewolf Wedding? What was it about them that drew you to them and want to tell their story?
TS: I loved Ian’s brothers when I wrote Heart of the Highland Wolf:
- Duncan, the youngest and a warrior (A Howl for a Highlander)
- Cearnach, the peacemaker; second in charge and friend of their deceased cousin Flynn
- Guthrie, their financial wizard of a brother (A Christmas Highland Wolf [title might change], coming Oct, 2014).
When Elaine came on the scene looking for her uncle’s treasure, Cearnach was the first one to intercept her, eons ago. Being his protective self, he was ready to take her into custody. She had other notions in mind. When he finds her again… he planned on doing his job as he first intended—and he’s not letting her get away for a second time. Love him.
LE: Can you introduce us to a few of the side characters that we’ll be meeting in A Highland Werewolf Wedding who will play an important role to/for Elaine and Cearnach? Was there any character that didn’t make as big of an impact on the story that you thought they would?
TS: Ghostly cousin Flynn wreaks all kinds of havoc. He still loves the lassies. A wolf teen, Logan, is already to date Elaine if Cearnach hasn’t claimed her. You know, wolf teen hormones gone amuck! Cearnach isn’t going for it. Calla is the friend who he has tried to talk out of a marriage, and she has her story with Guthrie in A Christmas Highland Wolf, October 2014. I would have loved to have more of Cearnach’s cousin, Heather, in the story. She’s been mentioned in a couple of them now, was trying to sneak off with a guy in Heart of the Highland Wolf and I think it’s time she found someone to love too… She’s got some way overly protective brothers also, so I can see trouble on the horizon already.
LE: Your site says you’ve done extensive research into wolf packs – what was your favorite reference when doing your research and why? Have you had the chance to observe wild wolf packs for any length of time?
TS: I really enjoyed learning about a wolf biologist who acted as a beta human, eyes not on the alpha, crouching, cap on his head. The wolf watched him, sometimes looking away, but always protective of the pack. The other wolves were watching him, doing their own things, not feeling threatened as the man remained crouched while the alpha was observing him. Then he saw the wolf tense, and knew he was going to lunge at him and grab for the bill of his cap, the wolf’s eyes trained on it. The researcher jerked his cap off just as the wolf leapt and the wolf snapped his teeth on air right in front of the biologist, landed a few feet away, turned and almost smiled. And that was it. He had outplayed the alpha and was accepted in the pack. I loved that story.
I read a lot of accounts, watched videos of biologists working with packs, getting to know them. I used one such story about a wolf biologist finding a male wolf shot to death, and his mate trying to raise a litter of pups, and no pack to help her out. Her pups would have been killed by other predators, so the biologist took her and the pups and placed them in an enclosure in the woods with limited human interaction. It had a happily ever after, just like in Seduced by the Wolf, which I based in part on that story. Only the wolf biologist is a werewolf, too! :-)
I’ve been to a wolf reserve in Texas and one in Nebraska. In the one in Nebraska, you can see the wolf trails they made, which is typical of the way they mark their territory also. It’s interesting to see their behavior, watching for the alpha’s direction, running with him, yet acknowledging he’s the alpha. They had a rabbit fur covered box as enrichment for the alpha to find and capture his prey.
They had another wolf they were planning to introduce to the pack, but they had to have a settling in period first where he would stay in a caged run and they could come up to the fence and check him out. If he works well with the pack, they can add him. I hope to go to the one in Ely, MN too.
LE: Why wolves? Was there any particular legend or mythology about wolves that was the root of inspiration for you that was used more than others or was there a wide source?
TS: I loved reading Call of the Wild and White Fang when I was a kid. I felt the plight of the wolves and that they should be able to exist just as humans did. I’d watched Wolfman and felt sympathy for him—that he was a person too, and needed loving. Kind of like Dracula. So when I began to write about werewolves, I based them on real wolves and added a human side, too. And in the case of humans, some are good and some are bad. They are comfortable in their wolf skins and human skins—the two make them who they are.
LE: The second book in your Heart of the Jaguar series, Jaguar Fever, comes out in August. How closely tied are your jaguar and wolf series? Can one be read without the other?
TS: They are both shifter worlds, but they can definitely be read separately. In Jaguar Fever, zoo man Thompson pops up for a fun visit. He’s had trouble with missing wolves from the Oregon Zoo in the past (Heart of the Wolf, Seduced by the Wolf) and now he believes Maya Anderson, who is co-owner of a garden shop outside of Houston, is his missing jaguar because she posed for pictures in her greenhouse and put it on the Web. Do you know how much trouble you can get into by posting pictures on the Internet? Well, her brother warned her. Jaguar Hunt (June 2014), the story I’m currently working on gets more into the story of the missing jaguar.
LE: With all your research into the wolf dynamic, what made you decide to jump into the life of a jaguar?
TS: My editor. She wanted me to start a new series. So I suggested a companion series to the wolf series, only this time big cats. I’ve had a lot of fun learning about jaguars, and their smaller versions—the housecat—and the differences between the two, just like I did with wolves and dogs. Most people have had dogs or cats growing up, so they can relate to them. It’s interesting to note that jaguars don’t vocalize a whole lot. Not like housecats. Why? Because cats have learned to vocalize to get their human’s attention. And I’ve had to do a lot of comparisons between jaguars and wolves. In a future story, there will be a meeting of the two. I do a lot of research on jaguars—watch videos of them in the wild, hunting, ambushing, and other jaguar traits, plus have read about numerous accounts. In one scene in Savage Hunger (Book 1 in the series), Connor is hunting dinner and I based that scene off a video taken of a jaguar hunter the prehistoric catfish in the jungle. They separated the two jaguars at my zoo for a while and the one was roaring and roaring, just so upset. It’s interesting to see how they will behave when they are separated. In another case I read about, a jaguar and lioness had been raised together. Every time she came into estrus, they moved her out of his pen. They would be really upset roaring for each other not eating. Then they didn’t catch her in time and she had jaglions. Now, they have enclosures next to each other, and they’re happy. They’re wild, but they’re only “human” too.
LE: When you’re not writing, what are you reading? Have you found an author that’s new to you or one that the rest of the world really needs to find? Is there a certain niche in the fantasy genre that you prefer to escape to? If so, why that one or if not, why not?
TS: I read a lot of Regency and Highland romances. I don’t write Regency, but I do write medieval Highland romances. My period of time is much earlier than most Highland romances I read. I love historical. I read just about anything. SciFi romance, YA paranormal, romantic suspense, contemporary romances, etc.
LE: And my favorite question to ask: Which authors do you read and/or think “Damn! I wish I had thought of that”?
TS: Truly, I don’t. I love creating my own worlds and though I loved things like Jurassic Park and Galaxy Quest, Star Wars, Romancing the Stone, The Princess Bride, the concepts lots of fun and I love them… but to me, it’s like a fun escapism from my own way of thinking, but I would have to come up with something that was my own.
Meet Terry Spear!
Bestselling and award-winning author Terry Spear has written over fifty paranormal romance novels and four medieval Highland historical romances. Her first werewolf romance, Heart of the Wolf, was named a 2008 Publishers Weekly’s Best Book of the Year, and her subsequent titles have garnered high praise and hit the USA Today bestseller list. A retired officer of the U.S. Army Reserves, Terry lives in Crawford, Texas, where she is working on her next werewolf romance and continuing her new series about shapeshifting jaguars. For more information, please visit www.terryspear.com.
- Heart of the Wolf
- Destiny of the Wolf
- To Tempt the Wolf
- Legend of the White Wolf
- Seduced by the Wolf
- Wolf Fever
- Heart of the Highland Wolf
- A SEAL in Wolf’s Clothing
- A Howl for a Highlander
- A Highland Werewolf Wedding
- A SEAL Wolf Christmas (Sep 24, 2013)
- Silence of the Wolf (Feb 4, 2014)
- A Christmas Highland Wolf (Oct, 2014)
Thank you Terry for taking the time to stop by Literary Escapism!
Terry is giving away a copy of A Howl for a Highlander. To enter, all you have to do is answer this one question: If you could have a wolf or a jaguar shifter make the scary weather fade into the background, which would you prefer and why??? Remember, you must answer the question in order to be entered.
Even though I’m not giving the additional entries any more, you can still help support the author by sharing their article, and this contest, on your blog, Twitter, Facebook, or anywhere you can. After all, the more people who are aware of this fabulous author ensures we get more fabulous stories.
The winner must post a review of the novel someplace. Whether it is on their own blog, Amazon, GoodReads, LibraryThing or wherever, it doesn’t matter. Just help get the word out.
The contest will stay open until August 15th at which time I’ll determine the winner with help from this snazzy plug-in that I have.