YA and children’s author A.J. Culey is visiting today, with a fun article previewing the events to come in her newest paranormal humor book, The Trouble with Antlers, which releases June 23, 2016.
Human Proofing Shifter High
by Norris Raccoon
Moving through the chaos of construction at Shifter High, it’s increasingly clear that the school has the greatest burden of all the buildings in Shifterville, in terms of preparing for our newest human arrivals. Bad enough that the only applicant for our veterinarian position is a human, but for him to have a teenaged daughter is an absolute disaster for Shifter High and its principal, Steve Armadillo.
Armadillo has had to empty out the prized trophy case in the school’s main hall, removing his own championship trophy for claw put. All the other school awards, including its ten pawball championships, seventeen 100-yard burrow medals, and twenty wrestling (predator and prey class) trophies are no longer displayed in the great hall of Shifter High. When asked what will replace these items in the case, Armadillo simply replied, “Something human, no doubt.”
The cafeterias are also undergoing a transformation. No longer labeled herbivore, carnivore and omnivore, these cafeterias will now be known by the generic titles of A, B and C. Let’s hope incoming freshmen don’t become confused. No herbivore wants to be trapped in a cafeteria full of hungry carnivores.
The art classroom no longer has art displaying shifters in mid-transformation. The music room’s shifter songbooks have been locked into a storage closet, no doubt to be replaced with more human-friendly songs. No more school chant about the triumphs of all species working together. No more predators vs. prey songs for Halloween. No more Shifter Clans Gone By to ring in the New Year. It is truly a sad day for Shifterville and its teenaged residents.
While the high school is being human-proofed as swiftly as possible, it is obvious Principal Armadillo has quite the challenge in front of him. When asked what his plans were for the school crest, with its human silhouette morphing into those of a turaco bird, a jaguar and a hedgehog, Armadillo simply threw up his hands and shouted, “Do I look like a miracle worker?” and stormed off.
One thing is for certain. Armadillo will need to work miracles this summer if he intends to keep his newest student, the human named Amelia, from discovering the truth of Shifterville and its residents.
Norris Raccoon is a reporter for The Shifterville Times (formerly known as The Daily Shifter).
A.J. Culey was not born a shifter, much to her dismay. Despite her limitations as a human, she enjoys spending time with cats, bunnies and other animals. She hasn’t met a shifter yet, nor has she had any antlers spontaneously appear in any classroom she’s taught in, but she hasn’t given up hope that it might one day happen. In the meantime, she has fun writing about the possibilities.