Chinese Werewolves? Really?
A bit about myself before I start rambling away: I am from Singapore (born and grown-up), a medieval history major and a gardening fanatic. Likewise, I have two girls and I herd cats. I write SFF under my normal name and urban fantasy under a pseudonym. So, yes, I am a SFF writer from Singapore.
Why Chinese werewolves? Uhm, why not?
There are many urban fantasy series out there in the publishing world. Fantastic series, by the way – I love Charles de Lint’s complex worlds as well as grimmer ones like Jim Butcher’s and Simon Green’s. Yet, I found myself wanting more: a world I could resonate with and understand.
Cue 2009. I was pregnant with my second girl and brimming with ideas. I was already toying (and building a world!) with the concept of Chinese werewolves, set in Singapore. The main character would be a woman. She would be a mother with children. Her pack was central in her life. The wolves (Lang – Mandarin Chinese for ‘wolf’) followed the Chinese calendar, as much as their human counterparts. Twist: she was an ex-teenage vigilante. I have always wondered how Buffy would turn out, when she became an adult. What happens to heroines when they are past their ‘hero’ days?
So, come Nanowrimo 2009 – I was writing that novel.
I tried a few publishers before Wolf At The Door finally found a home at Lyrical Press. Then I started writing Obsidian Moon, Obsidian Eye – and suddenly, I have a series!
Southeast Asia is a perfect region for urban fantasy (and epic fantasy, by the way). Singapore is an island-state who prides herself as a cosmopolitan city with many races and cultures converging there for commerce and for personal reasons. Each race has its own unique mythology and legends – great source material for an urban fantasy different from the usual North American or British ones.
Take a walk on the wild side, Singapore-style. Mingle with the Myriad. Who knows, you might be walking beside a Lang.
Joyce Chng can be found at A Wolf’s Tale: http://awolfstale.wordpress.com where she blogs about things SFF, writing, YA and urban fantasy.
Her alter ego – J. Damask – has her author page at: http://www.lyricalpress.com/store/index.php?main_page=authors&authors_id=165&zenid=andqadld2v33eskrbb45mgc9s3
Her SFF and YA stories are easily downloadable from Smashwords:
She tweets at @jolantru