In the Evening Wolf series, the lead characters are all women. That is because each one of the books tells the story of the female line of ‘cunning folk’, healers and midwives of old, going back through the centuries.
Each female is strong in different ways, but all share an inherited ‘gift’ of sight and, they all have certain powers. In my stories, those powers are an ability to make things happen, good and bad.
My females are not inherently bad, nor do they set out to harm or hurt others. But they will protect themselves and their loved ones. Because of the history attached to their ancestors, which was that two of their female descendants were accused of being witches, and were tried and executed for killing a number of people, children included, this imagined evil was deemed to have run through the blood line and was therefore inherited. All my female characters in the lineage suffered at the hands of others because they were descended from Esobel and Eva, the sisters hanged and burnt at the stake.
Esobel is the current book I am writing. It is set in the 1600s and is where the Evening Wolf series begins.
It is not entirely just about writing the stories of this female line of cunning folk in my books, but also about creating the female characters … all of them different, that is what interests me. Exploring different aspects of womanhood is fascinating.
Someone once asked me if any of these females were me. None of them are, but as I write, I become them. It’s quite an odd feeling, but one, I would think, other writers experience. But then I also ‘become’ the men in the stories as well (although not the nasty ones … of course).
As a woman, I like the idea of powerful women, and, writing fiction, you can make them as powerful as you like. In real life, I don’t think it is easy, as a female, being powerful. I am a mature woman and have had many experiences in my life. I can honestly say that I have never felt ‘powerful’; strong at times, but never someone with power. Maybe that is why the women in my Evening Wolf series are given this attribute. Maybe, deep down, that’s how I would like to be.