Got candy canes? Got hot chocolate? Got the roast beast? My characters are always up for a good time. After spending a lot of their existence wading through ectoplasm and smacking down ghouls, they need a break.
Ravenous is set in the contemporary world in a mid-sized city, so the residents are faced with all the thrills and spills of the modern holiday season. The werebeasts and vampires are no exception. After all, pretty much every culture has a big winter festival of some description, so why should the non-human species be any different? Besides, since coming out into the public eye, most of the supernatural citizens of Fairview are just trying to fit in. If that means putting up Christmas lights, many would make the effort if only to keep their human neighbours happy.
Each of the non-human species have their own style. Werewolves are very family-oriented. They have a big, exuberant celebration, with lots of everything. Lots of food. Lots of kids. The biggest tree ever. There are outdoor games that track mud and melting snow into the house. The alpha female grumbles about dirty floors and extra laundry. After sleeping off dinner, they all go outside for a good howl and then do the dishes. Since the weres have lived among us all along, their celebration is, in many ways, fairly similar to ours. Still working on your gift list? Wolves are easy to buy for. They enjoy gag gifts, power tools, sports gear and big-screen TVs.
My heroine (appropriately named Holly) is a witch and celebrates on the Solstice. That’s the turning point of the year, when the longest night is honoured with the fires of the Yule log and the bright light of candles. Yule marks the start of the sun’s return, a journey that will eventually bring a new harvest to fruition. A time of hope, it’s naturally a season for get-togethers, food, and presents. Have a witch on your list? Ornamental or practical items for the kitchen, bath, or garden are always a hit.
Vampires are the most interesting. They’re a bit like tigers with the added complexity of human personalities. Predators though they are, they still feel a relationship with whatever traditions they grew up with, but how they kept them would depend on the individual. Alessandro, my vampire hero, can be quite the generous Santa. Nevertheless, think twice before getting under the mistletoe with any of the coffin crowd. What to give a fangy friend? Vamps never say no to personal adornment. A gift card to a trendy boutique is sure to please.
There are other species, like the ghouls and demons, that just don’t call holly jolly stuff to mind—but we’ll ignore them for now. There are plenty of challenges and more than enough darkness for the other 364 days of the year. Even dark heroes—perhaps especially them—need to see the sparkle of lights once in a while.
And that’s the best moment of all–when everything’s wrapped, baked and ready, and I can sit and stare at the tree. What’s your favorite moment of the season?
Bright blessings for the holidays and all the best for the New Year.