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When I was first considering this novel, I was thinking about the concept of how a human and a beast could develop an emotional relationship.  I was tired of the dynamic found throughout fantasy literature, television and films where a helpless female protagonist becomes drawn into the world of the monstrous male other, which ultimately dominates her entirely.

Fantasy as a genre needs to have more examples of heroines retaining their strength in relationships with inhuman male characters.  These are stories which are often taken by teenage readers as depicting their romantic ideals.  This is one of the reasons why I switched the genders of the traditional trope, and made my human character male and my beast female, turning that dynamic on its head.

The other reason was that while considering the dynamic between human and inhuman relationships I drew inspiration from my experiences in falconry.  Instead of a human becoming dominated by the monstrous other, in falconry they form a partnership of mutual respect. As the female bird of prey is larger than the male, a falconer admires, even loves, their female birds for their power, their violence, aggression (directed appropriately) and hunting prowess.  She is a force to be reckoned with and respected because the falconer knows exactly what those feet are capable of.

Bestial expresses these concepts, and it was important to me that my female character embodied the sort of violent power of a female bird of prey, and would not be dominated by a relationship with a male character.  This is ultimately her story, describing her journey of self-discovery.

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