Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Promo & Tour: Shifter School by Gwendolyn Druyor

Title: Shifter School
Author: Gwendolyn Druyor
Genre/Age: Urban Fantasy/YA
Series: Wyrdos Universe
Publisher: Self-published
SynopsisShe’s gonna get them all killed.

So they locked her away.

Laylea has been hiding her entire life. She’s never been to school. She’s never had a friend her own age. She’s never known anyone else like her.

All that is about to change.  

In a world hidden from wyrdos and humans alike, shifters are still recovering from a vicious plot to destroy them all. They have two laws they live by now:

1) Hide  

2) Protect the children at all costs.

Laylea has just broken rule number one. But she’s only fourteen. So they’re sending her to school. Where she’s going to learn . . .

Anyplace can be a prison.

The Lincoln Park Shifter School is not your grandma’s uber-secret, underground academy.

A long, shrill scream drew Laylea back into the zoo. The guard who didn’t want to be called Beta was backing away from a tall black man in jeans, a button-down, and Fox sandals.

“Kyle!” Laylea screamed his name even as she heard KC screaming hers. “Kyle! You’re a good man! Think of Jeannie and KJ!”

The vampire looked her way. His familiar, affable smile appeared and he waved at her. “We’re just gonna have a talk. Get back to school, you reprobate.”

Then the smile melted away as though it had never been and Kyle stalked out of sight.

“Lee, come on.” KC yanked her out the entrance.

“No,” She tried to pull away but KC was strong. “I have to help him.”

“No one can help that guy now.”

Tears poured down Laylea’s face. KC was right. If Kyle had already killed a pack of werewolves, Laylea wasn’t going to be able to stop him from killing one guard. But she had to try. She hadn’t spent the last seven months hiding him from Dee and Morioka and everyone else just to give up on Kyle now. “I can.”

She yanked her arm out of KC’s grip and they both fell on the uneven steps of the plinth.

Five Favorite Movie Scenes
by Gwendolyn Druyor

This is going to be hard. I don’t need my day job anymore. I keep it because I love movies. I’m a tour guide at Universal Studios and I get to talk about my favorite movies all the time.

That said. . . 

My mind goes immediately to some of my favorite movies moments:
The park bench fight in The Bourne Identity.
“I do not think that means what you think it means.”
“I hate you, Uncle Jamie.”
“Eight is a lot of legs, David.”
Dr. Doolittle trying to counsel a Jack Russel on his OCD. 
The Fourth of July celebration in The Great Escape.
THE sword fight in The Princess Bride.
Every single time Hank Azaria is onscreen in The Birdcage

But as far as actual scenes go, well:

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Let’s start with the blooper that ended up in the final cut of The Birdcage. Hank Azaria’s character is crying over his Peasant Soup in the kitchen. The son has come in for the entree. Robin Williams steals a swig of whiskey from his son and then turns to hurry out. He FALLS. Hank Azaria stops crying and looks down to see if he’s okay. Robin Williams pops back into the shot “It’s okay. We’re alright. It’s fine.” and orders Hank to “Stop Crying!” Hank, like a trained actor, resumes crying. Robin yells his lines to his son while laughing and gets the hell off set. Pure joy.

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Then there’s the beautiful acting of Charles Bronson’s claustrophobic panic attack when Danny decides to go over the wire instead of through the tunnels in The Great Escape. He’s an actor known for strength and masculinity and his portrayal of uncontrollable (and totally understandable) terror moves me with its honesty. Mixed with the beauty of his friend Willie’s loyalty, the scene makes me cry, every time. I hate the ending of the film. So, I wrote The Great Escape into WereHuman: The Witch’s Daughter and let the family stop the film right after everyone escapes. [Really fun moment recently when I revealed to my mother, a mad fan of NCIS, that David McCullum (Ducky) plays the guy who figures out how to disperse the dirt in The Great Escape.]

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The first time I watched The Sting was during my sister’s graduation party in Medina, OH. I got to the end, rewound the tape, and watched it all again. Now, I get to work on the lot where it was filmed. I walk the streets they walked. [Watch Dr. Horrible’s Sing-a-long Blog and The Sting side by side. SAME SETS!] I love the Swap scene in The Sting. I love ALL THE SCENES. But the swap scene, where Robert Redford and Robert Earl Jones (Yes, Darth Vader’s daddy!) pull the first con that sets everything off is the first con I remember ever seeing. It may have taken me two viewings to grasp what was going on, but I’ve learned the best con movies are like that. The Sting changed my love of film and TV forever. 

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The Desk Set roof interview with Katherine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy is required watching for every smart woman. They’re both so clueless. It’s just joyful to watch them stumble along, misunderstanding each other in such simple, yet complex ways. The wordplay is classic but it’s their physical reactions that really sell the scene. 

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The final fight between Mal and the Operative in Serenity. It takes the entire film to make this scene work. It takes these two powerful actors building complex, intense characters intent on doing Right. I’m not a fan of bad guys. I don’t watch a lot of TV these days because bad guys seem to be the preferred character. I love Chiwetel Ejiofor’s Operative because he is not a bad guy. He’s in opposition to our heroes but he’s not evil. He’s layered. I can see myself in him as easily as in Nathan Fillion’s Mal, which makes the battle more visceral for me.

These might not be my favorite movie scenes of “all time” but they’re big ones in my life. I’m a fan of musical numbers and fight scenes especially because sometimes I feel so full inside of love or anger or frustration or joy and we don’t get musical numbers and fight scenes in real life to let those feelings out. Okay, maybe I do burst into song on occasion. But I’ve never sung a duet with the moon from inside a giant elephant. That’s what movies do for me. They let me get the huge feel out in a way I can’t in real life. Is that why you watch movies? 

Gwendolyn Druyor was born at the Quonset Point Naval Air Station Hospital, North Kingston, RI. The ID bracelet wrapped three times around her little wrist. She could swim before she could walk and read before she started school. 

She has traveled the world telling stories. After a year in Amsterdam writing and performing sketch comedy at Boom Chicago, she toured North America with Shenandoah Shakespeare and with the incredible educational show Sex Signals. From Paris, FR to William’s Bay, WI, you’ll find her gypsy life reflected in her books. If you met her on the road, read her closely, you may find yourself in there. 

For now, Gwendolyn lives in Hollywood with her Irish Jack Russell, Josh Lyman Zyrga, who is still pouting over the fact that she didn’t put him on the cover of WereHuman. 

For more information on Gwendolyn and her projects sign up for her newsletter at


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