Friday, October 20, 2006

Marry Me, You Vamp!

From the Vampire Vixen’s chat list, J.C. Wilder (once again) had something interesting and provocative to say, “I heard Virginia Henley speak many years ago and she made the statement, ‘Women would love to sleep with my men but they'd be crazy to marry them.’ - I feel that way about the vamp. They're dark, deadly and ultimately sexy but one would have to be crazy to truly trifle with one.”


That’s part of what irks me when readers of TD&D complain that my vampire character is morally reprehensible. I want to say, “Well, Duh. He’s a vampire. He EATS people.”

I totally understand the appeal of the romantic, tragic vampire. I think, however, it’s easy for post-Buffy fans to forget that the traditional vampire is a killer. He can have remorse, but he still needs to kill to survive. Most vampires aren’t like Angel. They may not be soulless (depending, of course, on the author’s rules regarding such things) but neither are they without sin. (You may say Angel had his Angelus, but I’d counter that in many respects those were two completely different people – one entirely possessed by a demon and the other burdened with a soul. I liked both, though Angel was more interesting to me because he was more self-aware and introspective.)

Anyway, it’s in the sinner that I find interesting literary ground. This question of can a killer be a “good” person interests and excites me. When I sat down and conjured up Garnet, I wanted this question to be central to her personality, too.

I love romantic comedies, and I always knew that I wanted TD&D to have some light-hearted, if not downright humorous moments. However, I didn’t really want a silly, vacuous heroine. I wanted someone who would be equal in strength (ala Garnet’s magic and Lilith, who, if unleashed could eat the vampire for breakfast) AND in emotional depth (she has her secrets and her darker side, too.)

Would I really want to marry Sebastian? No, not particularly. He’s a decent enough sort, a day-walker, and filthy rich… but he still drinks blood and he’d need a source for that blood and it couldn’t be me – not forever, anyway. Plus, I’m not sure a vampire would ever be able to settle down and lead a truly normal life. There is, after all, no statute of limitations on murder...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I just read your book, Tall, Dark & Deadly and absolutely loved it. I had a hard time putting it down. I have to agree with what you posted. There is no way I would have anything to do with a vampire. I love to read paranormal books that include them romantically, but there is no way I would trust them and I think the heroines in the books who do are idiots. I think you and Charlaine Harris are the only two authors whose books I've read that honestly reflect the very predatory nature of the vampire. They are hunters and they feed on people.

Thanks for a great read and I can't wait to read your next book.