MARGO ST. AUBIN TAKES OVER THE BLOG TODAY. MARGOT’S STORY, HOW TO TRAIN YOUR WEREWOLF, WAS INCLUDED IN TUSCANY BAY BOOKS’ PLANETARY ANTHOLOGY SERIES: LUNA. IN ADDITION, MARGOT ALSO HAS A STORY IN THE VENUS EDITION OF THE SERIES. TODAY SHE WILL TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT HER STORY IN LUNA.
…or, Why “How to Train Your Werewolf” appeared in the pages of Luna
This is a round-about story involving a reluctant writer, too many unfinished novels, and an orphan werewolf.
Back in the sands of time, Superversive called out for submissions for the Luna Anthology. At that time, my most recent Work in Progress was an unfinished novel about a teenager who is put into a mental institution because he thinks he’s a werewolf. The twist being that the kid is right, and most of the staff at the mental institution are gravely mistaken. Then they find out just how wrong they are in the most violent way. But now, his foster home is at risk if they find out it’s true! So he has to fix that. At the same time, he also must figure out how to live with his condition. There has to be a way to live with it without risking his new to him family and lose the precious few friends he has…
This was my way of getting something positive out of a harrowing experience.
The themes are perfect for this anthology. There’s too much introspection and character development to really make a good short story. While I do believe in madness, I also believe that “there is more between heaven and earth, Horatio, than exists in your philosophy.” It also involves exploring the effect of what you want to see versus what is really there.
This book meant a lot to me, because I spent some time in a mental hospital as a teen. The reason primarily being that I was given Prozac after a trauma. I became suicidal while on the drug. They took me off the drug and were so astonished that I was no longer suicidal that they gave me every assessment and personality test they could think up. I even saw the top expert in Schizophrenia in the United States, and several world-class psychologists. They tried to find one diagnosis that fit me. They held me in-patient until my insurance ran out. They couldn’t find a diagnosis that fit. My shrink literally said she wanted to make my belief in God an entry for the DSM, and implied everyone who believed should be there, too. So out of this experience, the themes of madness, dreams, horror and illusion are fairly personal to me.
At any rate, I really wanted Jason (my orphan werewolf) to be in this anthology. Because he’s more than just a murder floof with an attitude problem. He likes to think his way out of problems. Being a werewolf doesn’t respond well to overthinking. Instinct vs intellect is a part of his challenge. Then I realized this was a bit of flotsam left over from that novel that I really wanted to write.
It takes place after the rampage was over. Our teen realizes he was lucky to not be in jail or dead. He takes a long look at the aftermath and decides he needs help with self -control. Being a country boy, his best friend decides to take him hunting. So they go out to his grandmother’s house. What better to soothe a city werewolf’s heart than lots of woods, plenty of game, and epic peace and quiet? They don’t count on the deadly criminal gang who wants to empty the isolated farmhouse so they can hide out off-grid… This doesn’t mix well with “Anger Management for Monsters 101.”
I decided to turn it into a story for the Luna Anthology.
Being married to one of the editors didn’t mean I was a shoe-in. My work had to pass muster for the second editor, L. Jagi Lamplighter Wright. She has been an editor in mainstream publishing for over 25 years. Plus she’s a formidable writer in her own right, penning one of my favorite YA books in existence. With “The Unexpected Enlightenment of Rachel Griffin” series, she knocked Harry Potter off its perch in my estimation. She is the sweetest person in the world. But through experience, skill and discerning eye, she is still intimidating. I sent it in with my fingers, toes, and eyes crossed.
To my shock, she enjoyed my work. She even helped edit it for me. I heard rumors that Luna sold in part because my story was in it.
Then, tragedy struck: The Publisher went under! So most of my published work went under with them. Fortunately for us writers, Tuscany Bay liked these anthologies well enough to pick them up.
They did this before I even started shopping around! There is much happiness to go around. I hope you enjoy my take on the teenage werewolf goes to the woods– and finds trouble. Again?!
– MARGOT ST. AUBIN
Margot St Aubin has tried everything from web designer for a law firm, security guard for a famous auto company (among other places), a clerk at the Borders home office, to learning to code. No one told her that pythoness had anything to do with well poisoning. If you ask nicely, she makes book covers. She loves to travel, which seems to mean getting stuck in foreign countries, being harassed by the secret police, and being shut out of famous landmarks by burly men with machine guns. Juggling words and harassing fictional characters is overall more satisfying. For her sins, she is stranded in New York city for the duration. She is hopeful that messages in a bottle will lead to rescue soon. She lives in a bunker with her family at an undisclosed location in Queens.