What Inspired my story?
Colorado inspired my story. I’ve always loved walking in the woods, even growing up in the Midwest, where our woods are mixes of deciduous and pines. The smells in our pine and aspen forests here are so fresh and complex and they change with the seasons. The birds in Colorado are less varied, I miss the red cardinals and blue jays. Still, you can't beat the occasional wildlife sightings, always from afar! I’ve seen pronghorns, mule deer, mountain goats, bighorn sheep, elk, moose, foxes. Luckily, I’ve never met a bear or mountain lion on my walks. There’s a thrill at seeing these beautiful animals in their natural habitats, and I wanted to bring that into my story. I also wanted to honor the history and ways of the first peoples who lived here. That led me to conceive of my secret society of Netahs who can turn into animals, which I propose as predating even the known native populations, while also influencing their sensibilities to care for the land and its bounty. Human/animal combinations and transformations have been a part of human mythology for as far back as we've been able to record our stories, and they can be found all over the planet. Mine is merely a variation on a theme!
Keep your eyes out for Book 2! I'm calling it The Netahs, Down in the Valley