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A Writer's View
I’ve never thought of it before but maybe the main character of Shifter School came into being because my Irish Jack Russel, Lyman, sleeps with me. Even if he decides to sleep on his super fluff (aka. The comforter I kicked off the bed when I got hot the previous night) I’ll wake up to Lyman pushing all four paws against my head. (I fear he may be a cat.) He must be romping through my dreams.
I used to take my dreams for granted. I’ve always wanted to tell stories. For as long as I can remember, I’ve lived for stories. I got detention in grade school for reading James Michener’s The Covenant under my desk (during reading class). By junior high, my mother had instituted the no reading for pleasure during the school year rule. Then, in eighth grade, I grudgingly went to an audition for the school play and landed the female lead; a sexy, brash, outgoing spitfire; Maria de la Concepcion de Colina e Diego.
At this point in my life, I didn’t speak in public unless I was forced to. Like, I didn’t converse with people outside of my family if I could avoid it. I had absolutely no clue that this character was hiding inside me. Nobody would have dreamed that I play Maria. But I did and I got laughs! And a new dream was born.
I dream of writing and of acting, of creating stories and bringing them to life. And that’s what I do. I write and I narrate audiobooks. I used to think that everybody had dreams that drove them into the tiny little office to type tales that never existed before or pushed them to study or train or practice to do something grand. But I’ve found that a lot of people don’t have dreams or, at least, haven’t found their dreams yet. Worse, I know people who ignore or have abandoned their dreams.
Find your dream! Yes, look inside, inside the world you’ve already built for yourself. And look outside! Look out at the worlds you’ve never experience. Go see a movie that makes you uncomfortable. Eat in a neighborhood where you look different. Strike up a conversation with a stranger. Find a dream and make our world better.
So they locked her away.
Laylea has been hiding her entire life. She’s never been to school. She’s never had a friend her own age. She’s never known anyone else like her.
All that is about to change.
In a world hidden from wyrdos and humans alike, shifters are still recovering from a vicious plot to destroy them all. They have two laws they live by now:
2) Protect the children at all costs.
Laylea has just broken rule number one. But she’s only fourteen. So they’re sending her to school. Where she’s going to learn . . .
Anyplace can be a prison.
The Lincoln Park Shifter School is not your grandma’s uber-secret, underground academy.
Enjoy an Excerpt Normal fourteen-year-olds don’t wake up thinking about death. But Laylea wasn’t anything close to normal. She woke up composing a letter to her adopted parents telling them all the things she’d never get the chance to say in person. Sometimes she thought of writing a letter to her brother, Bailey. Some mornings she imagined leaving a letter for her birth mother too, in case they ever found her. Laylea had been composing the morning letters ever since she’d gone to a veterinarian’s office on a case last summer. Waiting in the lobby for the tech she was following, she’d read every pamphlet the clinic had. Including one that said the average lifespan for a twelve-pound terrier was thirteen to fifteen years.
She’d been fourteen for eight weeks now.
About the Author:
She has traveled the world telling stories. After a year in Amsterdam writing and performing sketch comedy at Boom Chicago, she toured North America with Shenandoah Shakespeare and with the incredible educational show Sex Signals. From Paris, FR to William’s Bay, WI, you’ll find her gypsy life reflected in her books. If you met her on the road, read her closely, you may find yourself in there.
For now, Gwendolyn lives in Hollywood with her Irish Jack Russell, Josh Lyman Zyrga, who is still pouting over the fact that she didn’t put him on the cover of WereHuman.
For more information on Gwendolyn and her projects sign up for her newsletter on her website.
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