Tuesday, March 15, 2011


I love vampires (hence, the email address). I teach my students how they represent their contemporary culture. Movie posters of Nosferatu and Dracula hang in my classroom.

Promotional Picture for Dracula Film

My obsession began with the film Lost Boys (Kiefer Sutherland, if you happen across my blog: Will you marry me?) released in theaters during the summer before my freshman year in high school. I went to see it eight times; I listened to the soundtrack a hundred times.

In high school, I read Stephen King's Salem's Lot, which drew me away from the pop-culture sexiness of these creatures and mesmerized me with their evil, horrific side.

In college, I devoured Stoker's Dracula, Le Fanu's Carmilla, and nearly questioned my sexuality after reading about Geraldine in Coleridge's "Cristabel." 

Then I discovered Anne Rice. Her seductive writing had me wishing I was a gay man living in the 18th Century. She truly revolutionized the vampire in a way that I find engaging and culturally relevant. But, regardless of how sensational she portrayed the vampire life, the tinge of sorrow and tragedy associated with immortality made her readers voyeurs: titillated through observation but not quite ready to shed our mortal coil.

Now as the Twilight series and those of the same vampire vein infiltrate our culture, I wonder: What in the Hell happened?

Don't get me wrong, I think Stephanie Meyer is a great writer. She understands her audience and yet she doesn't write down to them.

I am all about the vampire evolving to fit its contemporary culture, but I am disappointed by the vampires of today.  I don't want my vampires to be in love; I don't want my vampires to propose marriage. I don't want a vampire with eighty-something years of experience to fall in love with a seventeen-year-old high school girl.

True Blood?  The Gothic Pleasantville.  But, the HBO series (sorry, haven't read the books) balances the tender and the terrible of the vampire.  I do like the angle of the vampire blood being a hallucinogen drug to us humans and becoming part of the illegal drug industry. Oh, and there's some pretty nice eye-candy (Alexander Skarsgard, if you happen across my blog: Will you marry me?)

But fairies and vampires--I think I'm out.

I'm dark. I like the forbidden. I like the idea of evil. If it's not "appropriate" or if I'm not supposed to do it--I really, really want to do it. Now that vampires are appropriate and popular, I find my interest waning.

I know. Real mature.

When I gripe about the current condition of the vampire, my friends usually suggest that I write a "respectable" vampire story. I finally did, a short piece entitled, "Rosemary for Remembrance" which was instantly accepted and published in an online magazine and is now available for download on Barnes and Noble's website. Even with that success, I resist a vampire novel because I feel like if I produce one now, I'd just be lumped with the mainstream vampire madness.

And, quite honestly, I didn't have a story line.

But, I think I do now.

A woman is found ripped apart in her Long Beach apartment. This is the first of a string of murders that span over LA and Orange County. The investigation leads detective Dr. Alan Zotikos to Fiona Blake, a history doctoral student at UCLA, who is protecting a secret concerning the killer's identity . . . if anyone would believe her.

During her research for her doctoral thesis, Fiona stumbled across a secret society of vampires whose mission is to both witness and record the most critical moments in history. This society not only houses the truth, but also controls how these events will be documented by the human race. These vampires, who call themselves The Chosen, keep their posts until too much life skews their objectivity and then they select their replacements. One of The Chosen who has rejected his mission and in his search for the perfect human to make his vampire companion begins a killing spree that threatens the secrecy of the society itself.

Weighing her passion for truth, her faith in history, her hunger for answers to history’s mysteries against the love for her fiancé, her growing attraction for Detective Zotikos, and her desire to stop the renegade vampire's murders, she must decide whether or not she will try to substitute herself in place of the next Chosen or expose them.

So, what do you think? I admit that "The Chosen" is a bit cliche, but that's all I have for now. I'd love some feedback: which historical mysteries would you like to see featured? If you read this blurb on the back of a book, would you be tempted to buy it? 

Please comment!


  1. I'm totally down for a Vance Vampire novel.

  2. Bite me - with your story! Or - you've bitten; now write. Sounds very interesting and can be real metaphorical - though for things like greed, which - our society is rife with right now. It sounds like an interesting venture in thoughtful vampire lore, rather than the silly unconscious Meyer joke; teenage girls have never had a more dangerous time than now - the threat of boring, dead relationships and love triangles - in which women are picking the WRONG guy, because he is - what, pale, hot, and caucasian? Okay - enough brain drain on Twilight. It is easy pickings.

    I think the greed stuff could be good - and you could include some education analogical criticism as well - the contradictory elements in higher education - advancing free thought while at the same time, often suppressing or preventing free thought, or producing propaganda.

    All that fem. stuff - I don't know; but I'm down for smart, strong women; perhaps there's some gender issues in it - and - sort of good men, bad men, too - don't hate! Faludi - where's she been? - but she wrote her book on men, thinking it would be - just expose how grotesque men are - but her conclusions were actually quite - masculinist - she really seemed to express a kind of sorrow or empathy for men - at least in the 1990s.

    Alright - enough ranting; I have altogether too much work to do and am kinda angry about it, but have to do it anyway.

  3. Ok, I don't know much about historical mysteries but I would definitely be intrigued by the kind of book you are describing. However, if I saw that on the back of a book, it wouldn't tempt me to buy it. I'm sorry. There are just so many vampire books out there and it's almost not worth the energy expended picking through the pile. If someone reviewed it and compared it to "Sunshine" or some other similar amazing vampire book, I would be tempted. My problem is that your summary is kind of confusing in that I had to read it three times to understand it. That being said, I can tell this is just a working description of the book you're proposing.

    OK so that all being said, I definitely think you should go for it. I think a vampire society is an excellent way to discuss history in an interesting way, and what is better than history, romance, and vampires? They're made for each other. And clearly you're passionate about Doing It Right, so... yeah. Do it.

  4. Cory and Callie, love the feedback. Very helpful!

  5. I can think of no one better to write a vampire novel than you. However, if you have any kind of romance develop between a human and a vampire, I will shoot you. Vampire+Vampire love, fine; human+human love, awesome; Vampire+Human love, I find the shotgun.

  6. Hmmm historical mysteries theres a ton! Black Dahlia murder mystery might me a cool throw back to L.A in the 40's... No one ever figured that one out and its pretty gruesome.. Vampires could have done it and "covered it up" :o With Vamps that control the way history is recorded.. you could get into all kinds of conspiracies, jack the ripper, World War II, why rock'n'roll legends die at 26, maybe throw in the holy grail too? lol Jk I know I got carried away... :D

    I'm sure whatever you write will be awesome... I definitely will be looking forward to it!


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