First off, let me thank JM Dabney for the space today! I really appreciate it. Welcome back to the Acceptance blog tour!
When I first wrote Devotion, I hadn’t given a lot of thought to religion. I knew the wolves were tied to and guided by the moon, but beyond that—and that they followed more than one god—I didn’t think too much about it. Then, in Patience, I was a little blindsided by the fact that Jamie was actually quite devout. Well, crap. Now I needed to actually decide what they believed! Did I want to create a whole new religion? Hell no. For all I can be creative in world-building, I did not want to try that. But then what?
I ended up deciding on the Roman pantheon, which I talk about here . So, when my jaguar shifter came along, it was almost a no-brainer to go with the Egyptian gods for their beliefs. Quincy is pretty devout, probably as much as Jamie is, and so his religion and customs are very important to him. That meant I really had to get things right. Besides that, the Egyptian gods and myths are everywhere and most readers have at least heard of some of them (even if only in popular culture).
The difficulty came with having to pare down the number of gods I would include. The Egyptian pantheon is huge. When all is said and done, there are over a hundred. Clearly, I wasn’t going to include all of them. So, I did what I did with the wolves, I focused on what aspects of life were important to Quincy (and the jaguars) and worried about those. I still didn’t use all of the gods they would have followed, nor all the customs they would have observed, but there were a few.
The gods that made it into the story are:
Bastet (of course--above, right). I could write several blog posts on her alone. Often associated with protection, Bastet started out represented by a lioness (during the Second Dynasty), rather than the domestic cat she became in the Late Period. She is sometimes referred to as the gentler side of Sekhmet, the lion goddess associated with war and fighting. Along with her previous incarnation of a lioness, this is why the jaguars chose to use the word pride to represent their social organization. (Point of interest: there is no actual word for a collection of jaguars because jaguars do not have social groups. They are entirely solitary. So, I had to pick something.) In the fifth century, BC, the Greek writer Herodotus equated Bastet with Artemis, which cemented my use of her for the jaguars’ patron goddess.
Hathor (left)—Goddess of love, among other things. Since the jaguars are often a bit more solitary than they should be—at least Quincy’s pride was—many didn’t give Hathor any real thought. A lot of the jaguars didn’t believe in love and focused instead on their solitude. Quincy, of course, had other ideas, not being nearly as solitary as the rest of his kin. It is his belief in Hathor that helps him accept that Miles is really a destined mate.
Thoth—God of wisdom, whom Quincy prays to more than once in an attempt to figure out what to do about something.
Osiris—God of the underworld—was mentioned several times, especially in conjunction with facing him after death. One of the holdovers the jaguars had from the ancient Egyptian customs was the focus on the afterlife. While the jaguars aren’t quite as obsessed with it as the ancient Egyptians were, they did take it seriously.
Seth—in Acceptance, I focus on Seth as the god of Chaos and trouble.Quincy, in cat form, runs to clear his head and is described as running as if Seth is chasing him. It wasn’t exactly conscious but it was the idea that he could outrun the chaos in his head. Later, during the Beautiful Festival of the Valley, Quincy talks about how the cats refuse to stay at the cemetery past sunset, worried Seth would cause trouble for them. Seth is sometimes called simply “Set” instead. I chose to go with the “h.”
Thank you again to J.M. Dabney for the space to talk about Quincy’s religion. I hope you enjoyed reading about his gods and beliefs. Be sure to follow the whole tour for lots more bits about the story, some great exclusive excerpts, and lots of opportunities to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway!
Follow the tour here: http://www.grace-duncan.com/acceptance-blog-tour
Dr. Miles Grant acknowledges that his destined mate could be either gender even though his bisexuality cost him his family and his pack. Luckily he found the Forbes Pack, who happily accept him just as he is. What he never counted on was finding his mate in Pittsburgh or for his mate to be another species entirely—a cat!
Quincy Archer isn’t just any jaguar shifter. He is the heir to the leadership of his pride. Destined mates are nothing but legend to the nearly extinct and generally solitary jaguars, and Quincy certainly never expected to find one for himself, much less a male… or a wolf.
However, finding each other and coming to terms with their species is the least of their worries. Quincy is expected to select a proper female mate, father a cub, and take his place as heir to the pride. Except Quincy refuses, having no interest in women or leadership and knowing he isn’t right for it. But his father will stop at nothing—not even attempting to kill Miles—to get his way. Quincy and Miles must overcome many obstacles to stay together as the destined mates they’re meant to be.
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Grace Duncan grew up with a wild imagination. She told stories from an early age – many of which got her into trouble. Eventually, she learned to channel that imagination into less troublesome areas, including fanfiction, which is what has led her to writing male/male erotica.
A gypsy in her own right, Grace has lived all over the United States. She has currently set up camp in East Texas with her husband and children – both the human and furry kind.
As one of those rare creatures who loves research, Grace can get lost for hours on the internet, reading up on any number of strange and different topics. She can also be found writing fanfiction, reading fantasy, crime, suspense, romance and other erotica or even dabbling in art.
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