Looking for something new to read and short on money? You're in the right place, where I'll be featuring aspiring authors and their (free!) work!
This month meet Domi Sotto, author of werewolf romance Lone Werewolf!
Ancient magic and werewolves aren’t supposed to be center-stage for a pop-star!
When the music idol plucks Volya out of his orphanage, he is over the moon, star-struck and a little in love… until the very man who makes him dizzy asks him to use his werewolf instincts to break a curse.
As much as Volya wants to help, the price proves too steep. It’s learning why the ancient werewolf culture had rejected him and left him alone among the humans. It’s living through the violent ancestral memories. It’s becoming a wolf.
And it all hurts like the hellfire.
The more werewolf Volya becomes, the more he burns to confront his secretive tribe and fight his way back in against the injustice. He only wants to finally belong… and then his heart throws in a curved ball, forging the first soulmate bond of his life.
Alas, Volya cannot run with the werewolves and keep his human soulmate too.
He has to choose.
Meet Domi and read an excerpt of the book below!
Tell me a little bit about your writing journey. How long have you been writing, and how did you get started?
"I started writing in the last century, a good 30 years ago. I think I was pretty typical. Wrote tons of poetry as a teenager and a few stories with pen and on paper, some of them even finished. In my twenties I got into fanfiction for a videogame I was playing with angsty elves and the like, because it was the late nineties. Then I wrote and coded modules for this and the other video-games, which took me into my mid to late twenties. I tried original short stories too, learning to finish things. Finally, after taking a few years’ break, I decided to write a 50K novel and ended up writing far more than that. Far, far more."
Why fantasy specifically? Is it something you write often, or is this your first venture into the genre?
"I write fantasy when I don’t write sci-fi, basically. The non-speculative novels are still in the minority among my body of work. I figure that all stories are fantasies anyway, so why not just run with it, go as big and wild as it gets?"
What are your goals for your writing?
"I only have one goal–write a book so good that people can’t put it down."
What inspired Lone Werewolf?
"Two things. Firstly, the brutal Bronze age culture, the Yamnaya, who were the first horse-riders that we know of. Secondly, the sadness with which I watch legislation directed against people finding happiness in love. It upsets me when it is passed in any country, but in this particular case it was Russia."
Who is your favorite character in it and why? Tell me a little about them.
"It’s a hard question, but at the end of the day, I believe that each book is written because of one character, the protagonist. In Lone Werewolf, my main character is Volya Wolkov, and he surprised me with the amount of growing he did. I value his good heart and that he starts the story as an adolescent starving to be loved, and finishes the story as a man willing to offer love. At some point, his lover compares him to Peter Pan, but Volya finds a way to grow up. It’s a sad and, at the same time, powerful transformation."
With werewolves being so popular, what makes your version of them stand out?
"It’s Assassin’s Creed but with Werewolves. I’m afraid my werewolves stand out a little too much, actually. I tried to reimagine a lot of concepts, Alpha and soulmate’s bond, rework them to show ancient and existential conflict of us versus them. I don’t write about shame or submission to a powerful man. I write about the uncertain ways of love, discoveries and ancient visions."
Do you have anything else you’d like to say to the readers?
"Wattpad has a lot of everything, including some seriously good books. And a good book is the right book at the right time for the right person. Seek out those, and you’ll find a few satisfying hours, I promise."
At first, Volya didn’t realize he had a date with destiny at the principal’s office. And who could blame him? It was just before geometry. He was better at math than every other guy in his orphanage, so he was kinda looking forward to sitting together with his best mate Toshka. He planned to doodle or space out during the class, but nope, no dice.
“V-AAH-lya Wolkov,” the loudspeaker’s announcement blared down the halls of the three-storey building, like archangels’ trumpets. “To the principal’s office.”
The call had to be extra-loud like this, because Volya’s math teacher, a twitchy alcoholic, recently took to keeping everyone outside before the bell. This was to save his frayed nerves. Similar consideration wasn’t made for their nerves. The bunch of boys jostled in the dingy hall, twiddling their thumbs. Even with Volya’s top-notch, off-the-charts hearing, he could barely hear what Toshka was saying over the useless chatter of their other classmates. It was a decent approximation of being confined with ten monkeys, a rooster and a weasel in a sealed barrel.
Before the echo of Volya’s mangled name died down, heat rushed into his face. Thank God for the mop of curly hair that hung into his eyes and the burned-out halogen lamps in the hall. When he turned red, he turned very red.
“Sod off,” Volya muttered preemptively. Sniggering broke out on all sides of him, anyway. All conversations ceased, so he could hear Toshka’s breathing now. Which wasn’t much of a comfort, because it sped up in anticipation of trouble, intensifying to a bit of a whistle at the end of every inhale.
“Valya Wolkov,” the loudspeaker sputtered through the hiss of static for the second time. “To the principa—”
Volya pounded the wall behind his back with his fist. His name was V-O-lya, with an O, as in a word volya , yes, volya , the word that meant freedom, not Valya with an A. Volya was an idiotic name, all right, but was a little respect too much to ask for? He had lived in this stupid orphanage for long enough. They should have effing learned his name by now.
It was all he owned.