The Plausibility Factor
Dragons. Imperial Were-Panthers. Stargazers. Sex Demons and shifters of every description. Reality is greatly over-rated.
I love to visit the imaginary worlds that exist only in my mind. Writing fantasy and science fiction requires a great deal of attention to detail. Even though nothing I write actually exists, I have to make the premise plausible. People have to be able to believe that the worlds I create could exist, and that's why writing these stories is so much fun.
When I started the Imperial Were-Panther series, I knew that I wanted to create a line of cat shifters. I used panthers because I love the sleek, dangerous look of them and thought they'd make wonderful heroes. Then, I needed a reason for them to exist, a job if you will. Since they were going to be heroes, they needed a heroic job. After a great deal of thought, I made them guardians of the Imperial Throne, who had given up their privileged position and decimated their own species in a valiant effort to save humanity. I had a lot of fun writing those books, and there are several more on my to-do list.
The Stargazers weren't entirely a figment of my imagination. The ancient legends of witches who could feel the earth's ley lines, harnessing the power of the Earth for their own purposes inspired this series. The twist is that the Stargazers can see the lines of power between the heavenly bodies. That was the big picture, but I needed to add all the little details, such as how they physically managed to do that, and the side effects of their talent. There needed to be pros and cons to being a Stargazer, as there is with everything in life.
I've written other stories featuring creatures that you aren't likely to meet in your day-to-day travels, and each one had its own unique challenges. It's the little things that make science fiction and fantasy plausible to the readers and more fun for the writers.