When I started writing The Combat I was a Stokerist. Everything I knew about vampires I’d I learned on t.v. And that’s a pretty confusing smorgasbord of facts. I stuck to my Bram Stoker roots; the vampire is the villain. He tries to seduce the heroine away from her true hero.
So when I wrote The Combat, I gave my heroine Gabrielle her own hero; a Guardian protector. He’s a gargoyle who comes awake when called to protect an innocent. I wanted to write a scary story, and vampires provided a perfectly horrifying bad guy.
But that didn’t stop me from having problems. Other than the whole “I vant to suck your blood” and “sunlight will make me burst into flames” thing, I felt a little bit lost when it came to writing my vampires. Could they eat garlic? Touch silver? And what about their physical form?
I consulted two girlfriends who are die-hard Buffy fans. What do you call it when a vampire gets all evil looking? Is this his demon form? Is he technically considered a demon when he gets all “vampy” as my friends call it?
My husband and I are huge fans of Reaper. I absolutely love Sam, Andy, Ben, Sock, and whoever cast Ray Wise as the devil is absolutely brilliant. Ben’s girlfriend in season two is a demon--not a vampire, but a true demon. She’s a fallen angel, and a shapeshifter who takes the form of a really cute girl, but her demon form is quite monstrous. So if demons are technically fallen angels, what do you call a vampire when he gets all eviled-out?
These may sound like unimportant issues, but when you’re trying to write a book (that turns into three books) and keep your facts straight, you gotta know what you’re talking about.
Because vampires have always been bad guys in my world (and gave me nightmares as a kid) writing a book where a vampire wasn’t a bad guy took some effort. But The Combat broke me in, and The Collision was born. Vampires are still bad boys and it takes a special kind of woman to match them, but thanks to romance novels and HBO’s True Blood, I’m beginning to see the appeal.
Vampire novels are hugely popular, so I’m curious to hear what fans of romantic fiction think. Who are your favorite authors, and what do they call their vamps? What are your favorite vampire traits? What is plausible to you, and what isn’t? What do you want to see in your next vampire hero?