Of the books I have penned, ‘Blood Feather Awakens’ was one of the most fun for me. It tells the story of Sam Daniels, a wildlife photographer who, while on assignment in the Amazon jungle, encounters a breathtakingly beautiful, but horribly deadly, prehistoric bird. Sam witnesses the blood killing of his guide, but manages to snap a couple of grainy photographs, which he takes to an ornithologist at the University of Washington for identification. That is just the beginning of the tale; Sam and Dr. Kate Beck, accompanied by three guides and tailed by a couple of fame-seeking paleontologists, venture back to the jungle to find, and hopefully capture, the murderous creature.
Why was this book so much fun to write? I would have to attribute it simply to the imagination involved in it. From Sam’s first encounter with the bird, all the way to its capture and return to the States, I found it was a subject I could really do anything with, if I so chose. I wanted to make the time in the jungle both horrifying, thanks to the evasive bird, and romantic, due to the blossoming romance between Kate and Sam. I also wanted it to be bloody, because let’s face it: If a massive prehistoric bird were to attack, well, it would be nothing but bloody.
I also thrived on creating realistic relationships between all of the people. For instance, even though Sam and Kate are in the company of jungle guides, all of them are in this terrible situation together. It was imperative that they talk and laugh, that they come to trust and depend on each other in a way that simply would not take place on a normal jungle tour. Everyone is frightened, but they are also eager. The tour guides are also angry that one of their own has been killed, and they want the threat removed before anyone else is harmed. Sam and Kate want the bird captured and studied; they want to keep it safe while ensure the safety of the world.
But then we have the two paleontologists, Dr. Harold Kreiger and Dr. Roy Hastings. These two men work at the University of Washington, just as Kate does. Since they are colleagues of hers, she takes Sam to see them when he brings her the photograph of the bird and recognizes it as ‘prehistoric’ in nature. But, just as she fears, these two begin to see how beating Kate and Sam to the punch will make them famous, and these two men try to get to the creature and locate it before Sam and Kate. This turns out bad for Kreiger and Hastings, but I have to admit, it was more than a pleasure to create the demise these two selfish men deserved.
Now, before going any further, I must inform readers that I never intended this novel to end well. It was never meant to be a sugar-coated piece of fiction, where everyone is happy by the last page, safe and sound, and living in their own little paradise, all the hardship with the big bird behind them. I wanted the truth about how dangerous this thing was in my own mind to be clearly conveyed; this bird can think, reason, and use logic. The humans which pursue it may outsmart it and capture it, but all it needs is a little time to sort things out and find a way to appease its own bloodthirsty nature. This thing was never meant to be captured; after all, it survived a meteor hitting the Earth millions of years ago, and it has managed to continue its species for the sole reason that ‘life will find a way’. The determination shown to simply survive needed to clearly reflect its ability to destroy, as well. I believe that I portrayed all of this clearly and concisely, especially at the very end.
So, what is ‘Blood Feather’? To put it simply, the creature is, indeed, a bird, but it is prehistoric, related to the ‘archaeopteryx’ but much larger. In my mind, when humans discover the bones of prehistoric animals, all we really can do is guess as to what their real appearance would have been like. With that being said, consider the speculative drawings available which are representative of this particular species’ appearance: Internet and book images show us, more or less, a feathered creature with the head and appearance of a dinosaur. Now, perhaps they did look like that, but I venture to say that it is likely we are off a bit in our assumptions. I did nothing more than to create my own creature, in my own mind. Some of its physical traits are the same, some are different. This is the reason Kate and the paleontologists are uncertain of what it is: They are stuck with an assumed picture in their overly-educated minds.
But exactly what Blood Feather is, is not important. The bottom line is that it’s a killer. It lives on flesh and blood, and it gets pleasure from the hunt and chase. It is airborne, so there really is no escape, and it has the ability to somewhat hypnotize its prey with its eerily human eyes. It is meant to confuse and terrify, which is precisely what I designed it for. Its beauty is deceptive; it will lure you in and then end your life. To be honest, this was the most fun for me: Writing about presumptuous humans who are scrambling around out of their element, trying to get the best of nature’s perfect killing machine.
I truly hope readers are as entertained by this story as I was by writing it. I tried to keep it light and simple without compromising fear or blood. I also wanted to tell a story that would keep the reader turning pages by avoiding long, drawn out descriptions or droning, pointless fluff. I think that those who read this fun, frightening story will appreciate it, in the end, for what I intended it to be.
ISBN-13: 978-0692734087 (Custom)
BISAC: Fiction / Romance / Action & Adventure