Author's Comments
Out of character comments by Lycanthrophile and Julie about their writing process
When I first approached Lycanthrophile, it was a tiny bit weird. I hadn't played around with the World of Darkness in about two years, and RP'd just as infrequent. Writing had become a personal thing rather than RP, so it took a lot of guts to step in and get my feet wet. Naturally, I feared the worst with most other people. I feared not finding that connection or feeling out of place to the point to where my writing would stumble and sound stupid. But this particular writer was none of the above. The character, Carl Dane, reminded me of something that I missed and adored. Like picking up a favorite novel that I hadn't seen in ages, that old spark rekindled, and I wanted to submerse into it. I wanted to remember what it was like to be Toreador more than simply a predator of the night.

. . and the funny part was then, I wasn't playing a vampire artist that gets entranced by shinies. I was the writer behind the tale of Alpheus deVries, a runaway whose lineage haunts him and horrors terrify him more so than fangs and blood.

It was, for it's short time, very dramatic and beautiful.

Time passed before we collaborated again. Schedules conflicted, but like I said, we connected as fellow writers and became friends because of it, so the fact that we weren't role-playing didn't matter. It wasn't until I found this community called Tenebrae Nostro that I somehow managed to drag the poor writer back into the madness. Thing was, this wasn't the story of Carl and Alpheus. Because I was the first to join TN, I went in with the Alpheus's LiveJournal timeline that meant at that time he was in his mid-20s, going by the name Gideon Thrace, and recently reunited with a different vampire.

In a way, I kind of blame Adam Balister for the creation of Michael Luther. If Adam and Gideon weren't together, Gideon probably would be with Carl, and Caine only knows where that would've gone. Michael was only in my head as a quiet voice with a strong background thanks to White Wolf's Predator and Prey series. The book had only recently been finished after I decided to pick them up again for reference, we were in the midst of figuring out what the fuck to do with Carl, and I said one night, "What about Michael?"

The rest is, well, history. Inspired to come back to the World of Darkness in the vision of the most passionate clan of vampires, House Van de Nacht was born, and one NaNoWriMo turned to MONTHS later, we wrote the madness called Savin' Me. It was a delight, and if no one else get the time to read the whole thing, I don't give a shit. It was moving, there was plot, and characters were born, developed, and died, and just those facts keep the story going.

But if you do, thank you.

Special thanks to Lycanthrophile for allowing my thoughts to run rampant, even when it seemed to go nowhere. Those unusued chapters mean something even if they remain in GoogleDocs. Also, thanks to J. Loveland for allowing Adam to totally cause Gideon to be as emotionally screwed up as he was in ONE chapter - it was awesome and impossible without the emerald-eyed bastard on his mind. And everyone at Tenebrae Nostro, especially the mods and player of Frost, for creating an awesome setting and start point. All of you are extraordinary and without one, I don't think this story would've worked.

- Julie C. Thio
"Hey, Lycanthrophile, i just found this RPG group.  And I think Carl would be a good fit..."

That was my introduction to Tenebrae Nostro.  No hint of the madness to come in those simple words.

I'll be honest.  My response was to say no.  I was in the middle of writing a Supernatural Big Bang story and unsure if I would make the deadline.  The last RPG I had joined outside of a few close friends had ended because of  a lack of time on my part, and I had no desire to see something wither on the vine again.  I was dealing with a personal issue that was taking up a lot of my time.  I just couldn't see taking on another project at that moment.  So I politely (I hope) declined and continued on writing as Julie and I kept on talking.

Fast forward about three months.  Julie mentioned Tenebrae Nostro again.  And this time, I was in a better frame of mine.  So I looked things over and said yes.  But there was a problem.  Carl and Gideon had known each other in a different game, so we wanted the characters to have a past.  Except that Gideon was already involved with Adam.  I wanted Carl to have or develop a relationship with an appropriate level of angst, but I wasn't about to suggest that we break Gideon and Adam up.   So Julie mentioned this character called Michael from a book that she had just read.  I did a little research online and read the ebook.  

I devoured it in one day.  I then went out and bought a paperback copy.

It's not great literature by any means.  But something about Michael Luther's situation and the events Julie proposed that would lead him to LA resonated with me.  It would be a perfect match for Carl and force him to grow as a character.  Which meant that I would have to grow as a writer.  Just the challenge that I wanted.

In the three months it took to write Savin' Me, Julie and I have written almost 90,000 words which made it into the story, plus probably another 90,000 in background, discarded scenes, and plots that were started and discarded.  I have developed Carl's backstory in more detail, several significant NPCs who were little more than painted cardboard have become characters in their own right, and spent time in the not so easy art of realistic world building.

So thanks to Trinity for creating the playground that allowed us to run rampant, thanks to Frost's mun for giving us the perfect set up, and most of all to Julie for poking and prodding me into becoming a better writer.  I couldn't have done it without you.

Lycanthrophile