All month long Reading Between the Wines Book Club is taking you BEHIND THE AUTHOR! Find out what your favorite authors do when they're not writing the books we love to read. Some just might surprise you! Our first guest is historical and paranormal romance author, Terry Spear. Welcome!
Creations of Characters, Worlds and…Bears!
By Terry Spear
When I was a kid, I made up stories, shared them with my friends, and took creative writing in high school, in addition to English literature. But I also was the only one in my family who really learned to sew. My mom did some when she had to, but neither she nor my grandmothers sewed.
I began with embroidery work, cross-stitching, and every Christmas I'd get some kind of craft pictures to create—embroidered pictures, pillowcases to embroider, tea towels. I hooked rugs, made quilts, and when I was in high school, learned to make dresses. And I was creating cloth dolls and bunnies. But my parents were creating carriages for dolls and they asked me if I could make an old-fashioned teddy bear to display on their doll furniture for the doll and teddy bear shows that they were attending.
That was the beginning of Wilde & Woolly Bears.
When my kids were little, I was teaching them to read and making up my own children's stories. I was also creating teddy bears—some selling to stores all over the States, some winning awards for dressed bears, most unique bears and best of show. Some were featured in Teddy Bear Review Magazine, The MacNeill Galley, Texas Monthly Magazine, and Texas Co-op Magazine. Some were in newspapers and in the Spectral Vision Film's The International Teddy Bear Collection.
I create all kinds of different bears—the Celtic Clan Bears for Scottish roots, since I love all things Scottish. I write both Highland medieval and Highland contemporary wolf romance, mainly because I have Highland roots. The Steampunk Bears were a new creation because a friend wanted one for her daughter. And I ended up with nine more orders for them. My fanciful, colorful Rainbow Bears and Sherbet Bears are a big hit. And the more standard brown teddy bear is too, though even so, I have one that is like a faux rabbit fur, and another black tipped, grizzly bear fur, which gives them a special uniqueness. I made a Red Dragon Bear—red fur bear with a red and black dragon cloak—and that was a hit. So now I've ordered some dragon fabric in blue and gold, purple and gold, and black and gold and will make some new Dragon Bears up as soon as I get the fabric in. I've sold a lot of wizard bears with their wizardly cloaks, old world Santa Bears, and even Jester Bears. I make mostly faux fur bears—though most of the fur is expensive--$20-$45 per yard, I also make mohair bears and that gets up to $145 per yard. But some collectors only want mohair, so I began to make a few of those.
I've made everything from a pirate bear with a peg-leg (won first place for most unique bear) to vampire bears. And they've found homes all over the world from Canada to Australia, France, Belgium, Wales, South Africa, Russia, China, and Kazakhstan and all over the States.
I've made bears for authors to giveaway to their fans for new book releases and I've donated bears to raffle baskets and at Facebook parties to celebrate my own releases. Who wouldn't want a unique teddy bear to call their own?
What I love about them is that each is a unique creation, just like the characters in my stories. They all have their own personalities, so for me, creating a new bear is truly a new bear. Not just a copy of ten others before her.
Like creating stories, I find the ultimate joy in creating the bears and in the end, love sharing them with the world! For years, I've been known as the Bear Lady, and only more recently, the Wolf Goddess, with the creation of my werewolf series. As long as no one calls me a Cougar (because of my cougar shifter series), we're good.
Thanks so much to Crystal for having me here today to talk about my bears and books! I'm giving away a print copy of A Highland Wolf Christmas to a U.S. winner, and an ebook copy of Highland Rake to a winner located anywhere. Also, an audiobook copy for Winning the Highlander's Heart.
As Terry mentioned above she is giveaway away three great prizes today! To enter, just leave a comment on this post letting us know; do you have any hobbies that you do in your spare time? If so, what? If not, feel free to leave a question or comment for Terry! :-) Then be sure to fill out the rafflecopter below. Good luck!