Tell us a bit about yourself.
I’m an Aussie author who’s loved fantasy since before I even learned to read—as a tiny thing I loved fairy tales and was terrified of wolves. Maybe there’s a connection there. Wolves do get a pretty bad rap in fairy tales. My parents tried to convince me that there was no reason to be afraid of wolves, since there aren’t any in Australia. But logic and phobias have nothing to do with each other, and my fear of wolves continued into early adulthood. My big brothers used to delight in howling outside my bedroom window at night, or locking me outside in the dark.
How long have you been a werewolf fan?
Remember how when you were a kid you used to pick at scabs on your knees, and even though it hurt, you couldn’t seem to stop? My feelings about werewolves are a bit like that. Though I found wolves (and werewolves) so frightening, I was perversely drawn to them as well. I did eventually stop being afraid of real wolves, but werewolves continue to scare and delight me in equal measure.
What was the first werewolf movie you ever saw or the first werewolf story you ever read?
The first—and only!—werewolf movie I ever saw was An American Werewolf in London. I knew going to see it was a bad idea, but I allowed my friends to talk me into it. Big mistake. I still have horribly vivid memories of some of the more gruesome scenes in that movie.
Why did you decide to write a werewolf story?
There’s just something so compelling about werewolves. There are a million stories and films about them, so obviously a lot of people find them fascinating. Maybe it’s because they’re primal terror all mixed up with man’s best friend. Sure, they’re terrifying, but they’re also loyal and fiercely protective. You’d want one on your side in a fight. I had a character like that in my trilogy The Proving. He started off as the terrifying attacker, but quickly grew to take on the role of protector and much more, despite being intended for a walk-on role. He was just so much fun to write that I ended up giving him his own story.
Would you tell us about your latest werewolf story?
Moonborn is that story, about the werewolf Garth.
Garth grew up as the human stepson of the pack leader, always looking in at pack life from the outside, wanting to be part of it. It seemed like such a great idea to get his werewolf brother to turn him. Or, at least, it did until he was stuck up a tree in the middle of nowhere, losing blood by the bucketload, with a crazed werewolf waiting for him to fall.
And that was even before the pack leader found out what he’d done. The risk of dying from the Change hangs over Garth—but suddenly dying looks like the easy option, compared to living as part of the pack. Because Garth’s never been the kind of guy who follows the rules, but now he has to learn fast or lose everything.
A small sample of Garth’s attitude in Moonborn:
Trevor hoisted the backpack containing the heavy length of chain and the first-aid kit onto his back as if it were empty, and Garth felt the familiar stab of envy at his baby brother’s strength.
“Wish this was silver,” Trevor said.
“What the hell for?” Garth locked the car and headed off down the trail. Long fingers of shadow stretched ahead of him on the rough earth. Only an hour or so until sunset. They needed to move if they wanted to be well away from civilisation before the moon rose. “I’m not bringing that shit anywhere near you. One scratch and you’re dead.”
“I’m just worried.” Garth cast a glance back at his brother. Trevor’s young face showed a strange mix of emotions: nerves at what they were attempting warred with the thrill of his first time out under the full moon. “I don’t want to hurt you.”
“Can’t make an omelette without breaking some eggs.”
Trevor pushed up beside him and gestured impatiently. “I mean really hurt you. What if—what if I can’t stop?”
“That’s what the chain’s for, genius. Relax, would you?”
Marina Finlayson is a reformed wedding organist who now writes fantasy. She is married and shares her Sydney home with three kids, a large collection of dragon statues, and one very stupid dog with a death wish.
Marina’s website: www.marinafinlayson.com
Connect with Marina on Facebook: Marina Finlayson
Buy on Amazon: Moonborn