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A Wolf By Any Other Name... by Chaaya.Chandra

As I mentioned in an earlier journal, I'm working on a FAQ to go at the end of the next novel. There's this really annoying question that, honestly, I hardly ever get asked, but apparently someone else does. I think the fact it does get asked so often says a lot for how our media portrays the furry community. I've heard of some pretty strange stuff, I'll admit. I heard strange stuff while I was in the Army too, and I'd hardly call it an active part of their culture. So here's my answer from an author's perspective. While you're reading it I want you to answer for yourself: why did you chose the animal you did or even why furry at all? I'd be interested in hearing some answers, but as always, my ego isn't tied up in hearing responses. It's a personal enough question, I'll be surprised if I do get an answer.

Why wolves? Why not humans?

From what I'm told, this is the most frequent question the publisher gets. Please, please, please, quit asking it. Seriously. To fully understand, you need to know the basis of the "steampunk" genre. There're a few different interpretations, but at its core you have a steam-based society. That's the steam. You also need the punk.

Punk refers to a counterculture--something that's at odds with the "normal." In other words, if you have a nice world where everything is gears and goggles and steam-powered gadgets, you still don't have true steampunk. You have to establish a part of that world that's off by itself and running at odds with the rest of society.

In Terah, that role is filled in many different ways. Sparks are not considered normal at all, partially accepted, but not normal. Atheist clerics are a new thing that hasn't happened during the time in the novels, but those are also very counter-culture. And the main thing, especially as far as the novels go, is the wolf people themselves, the vykati. Their culture is not generally accepted and is very different than the human cultures around them.

Without vykati you don't have the punk, and since the steam in that era isn't as established as it is in the game timeline (we're over 100 years before the game timeline), you'd end up with just post-industrial fantasy.

Besides, what kind of silly question is that? Is the next question going to be, why does Sajani like black armor? Oh oh oh, maybe it'll be: why does Ginger have ginger colored fur?

A Wolf By Any Other Name...


13 July 2020 at 13:14:47 MDT

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