Thursday, June 30, 2011

Finished Editing Book Three

It was a bittersweet moment when I read the last sentence of the last book.  BLOOD FEUD will now be passed on to my proofreader and copy editor.  But the good thing is, it shouldn't be long now until I start the actual publishing process.  Yeah!

And, as much as I hate doing it, I will also have to start being my own PR person and set up book signings and tv spots locally.  I'm going in with the attitude of HAVING FUN.  Hopefully I'll sell books along the way.

Will post progress reports as I begin publishing the Charleston Vampire Chronicles! 

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Vampire Power Play

In my third novel, BLOOD FEUD, my characters get tangled up in a mystery that continues to grow deeper as they try to solve it.  They surprised me with all the twists and turns they threw at me.  Yes, my characters sometimes take the reins and create their own stories.  It's fun.  It's the part of writing that I enjoy the most.

Here's a bit of their conversation from Chapter 32

Chapter 32

Marcus moved to the refrigerator and grabbed two bottles of blood, and this time I did not refuse. I had a feeling I was going to need all the strength I could get to listen to whatever it was he was about to reveal to me. He took his bottle and sat at the kitchen table. I pulled the chair out opposite him and sat down as well. I took a long drink of the blood and let it go down cold. It hit my belly like a punch to the gut, but soon fanned outward to set my insides moving on that glorious internal roller coaster ride.
"Travall is the reason I split from Vanguard," Marcus said. "As you've just said, he's not family, and yet Bishop granted him so much power, and so much leeway, that it pissed me off, for centuries. I finally couldn't take it any longer. Bishop gave me no explanation where Travall was concerned. To this day I don't understand the relationship there. I don't know why Bishop gave him the power he has. And worse still, I watched for years as Travall misused that power. I've confronted Bishop about it more times than I can tell you, and Bishop always took Travall's side," Marcus said.
I took another drink and just let my mind chew on the information Marcus was telling me. The fact that Travall was not family, but had been granted a prestigious position of power made me question Bishop's motives. There had to be a connection between him and Travall.
"Do you suppose they were lovers?" I asked.
Marcus literally choked on the blood he was swallowing. He regained his composure. "Where the hell did that come from?"
"Like you said, Travall is not family. Bishop has to have a motive. I don't think it's unthinkable."
"Travall is not that old. I'm older. If Bishop had a relationship with him, I'd have seen it. Neither of them have that kind of bond. And as you know, we don't consummate our love in a physical sense, it's all through the blood."
"I know, I'm just thinking out loud. Could Travall be the son of someone Bishop loved in the past? Could he be family of someone Bishop cared about? There has to be a connection."
Marcus finished his bottle of blood and set the empty down with a bang. "There's something else you need to know."
I looked at him. I began to realize he was a master at leaking bits and pieces of information to me. I wished he would just lay it all out on the line. But it seemed he had to reveal things at his own pace, and that was a bit infuriating.
"I suspected Travall of killing your husband," he said.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Vampires, Who Do You Love?

I grew up with vampires.  I was a Dark Shadows groupie.  I ran home from the school bus and sat spellbound as Barnabas Collins stalked around with his cane and that ring on his finger.  I loved it.  Jonathan Frid was my first taste of the undead.  My mind was warped forever.

Of course I liked Dracula and I stayed up late nights watching old B movies with Bela Lugosi and Christopher Lee.

Then came Cliffhangers in the 1970's.  Michael Nouri was a stunning vampire and I was once again spellbound to watch him on television each week.  But that was a short lived show.

Moving on, I fell in love with Forever Knight and Geraint Wyn Davies. I liked the flashbacks when they'd delve into his past.  I loved Janette, she was awesome in her role as the barkeeper.  And I even loved  Nick's mortal partner, Schanke.

The Lost Boys, what can I say.  Keifer Sutherland as a vampire was weird, but the storyline was cool and I enjoyed it.

I never really got into Buffy, I didn't see many of the episodes but need to pick them up sometime and give them a go.

Oddly, Tom Cruise was an okay Lestat, I was expecting to hate him in the role, but I didn't.  I much preferred Stuart Townsend's portrayal of Lestat in The Queen of the Damned.

The more recent, Moonlight, with Alex O'Loughlin was a fantastic show, with a great storyline going, and then CBS cancelled it. 

I am one of the few who is NOT a True Blood Fan.  I couldn't get past the nudity and sex in the first season and turned it off.

On the other hand, I've really enjoyed The Vampire Diaries.  Ian Somerhalder is FANTASTIC as an immortal, he's got the look, the moods, the humor.

Can't abide the Twilight vampires.  Robert Pattinson is just butt assed ugly and that turned me off from the get-go.

So those are some of my favorite and not so favorite on screen vampires.  I'm sure some of you have your favorites.  How about it?  Who did/do you like.  What undead blood sucker turns you on?

Monday, June 27, 2011

Can Vampires and Dogs co-exist?

Can Vampires and Dogs co-exist.  I think probably not in most cases as dogs are very sensitive to what vampires are.  However, I have featured a Great Dane in my first novel, BLOOD THIRST.  He was an awesome dog and he became a vampire dog.  Tragically, it did not go well for him, but he certainly is an endearing character.

In my third novel, BLOOD FEUD I've added a few more dogs.  Rhana and Laser are Border Collies.  They are owned and loved by one of my immortal characters.  Although they aren't the stars of the book, they do have their moment to shine.

Here is an excerpt from BLOOD FEUD, featuring Rhana and Laser.  Enjoy.

Chapter 18

We met up with Elisha Hatairik once again. She was seated at her desk and she looked up as David ushered me into her office. We both sat in the straight-backed leather chairs across from her.
"I'm glad you're going to be joining us," she said. "We just need to do a little bit of paperwork to process you, then I'll answer any questions you may have."
Her tone was sincere and as she flashed me one of her mirthful smiles.  Her demeanor put me at ease immediately.
Movement caught my eye and I glanced down. A tail wagged under her desk, I saw it going back and forth. It was black with a white tip and long feathery hair. "Do you have a dog under there?" I asked.
"Two," she said. "Rhana, Laser," she called their names and both dogs eagerly appeared beside her. They stood on hind legs, propping their front feet on either side of her chair, and gazed at her with complete love in their expressions. They were Border Collies. Their markings looked identical: same black coats, same white blazes, same white paws, same white tip on the tails. I couldn't tell them apart.
"Rhana, bring the bag please," Elisha said. The dog on her right jumped down and went under the desk again. When it came out and rounded the edge of the desk, I was elated to see that it carried my bag in its mouth.
"My bag! Oh my God, you have my bag!" I took the bag from Rhana. I dug around inside and found that everything was there.
"I had it cleaned for you. Everything that could be salvaged, was," Elisha said.
"Oh, you don't know how much this means to me." I said.
"Laser, go get the gun," she told the other dog.
Laser trotted out of the cubicle and came back about a minute later with my Ruger held carefully in his mouth. He set it in my hand and cocked his head inquisitively.
"Thank you Laser," I said.
I swear the dog winked at me and then he moved back to Elisha's side.
"Where did you get such smart dogs," I was impressed.
"I found a breeder outside of Savannah. Her dogs excel in the breed ring and at performance. Rhana and Laser are very special, aren't you?" she said. The dogs eagerly accepted her praise.  "A lot of dogs won't tolerate us, immortals that is, but these two are amazing. At times I think they're smarter than me. I have to come up with chores for them to do everyday, to keep their minds busy." Elisha beamed as she spoke about her dogs.
I watched as she gave them a silent hand signal. Both dogs immediately sat beside her wheelchair and watched her intently.
"Now, let's get your signature here, and here," she said. She slid several papers across her desk.

Update on my Vampire Chronicles

If you haven't heard, my publisher backed out of the contract for BLOOD DIVIDED and therefore I am moving forward to epublish the entire trilogy.  BLOOD THIRST, BLOOD DIVIDED and BLOOD FEUD make up The Charleston Vampire Chronicles.  I'm very excited to be working on this publishing venture and I know some of you are waiting eagerly to read the new books.

As we stand right now, BLOOD THIRST is being copy edited.  The cover design is done and as soon as we give it one more read through it will be published via and also (printed copies)  This novel is a revised edition.  It was originally published in 1989 by Pinnacle Books, a division of Kensington.  It is the story of Angela Trenton, aka Ainjul, and told by her. She is brutally attacked and left for dead, but endures and is turned by a kindly black vampire named Elijah.  Through Elijah she learns that Matthew Trenton was the vampire who attacked her, and she vows revenge.  When she finally confronts Matthew she finds out she looks exactly like his long dead sister, Maria.  As she learns of Matthew's past she has a change of heart and revenge takes a back seat.  She knows she needs Matthew because she has to find out how to live among the world of the undead.

I've actually had folks as me If I am L.J. Smith (creator of the Vampire Diaries) because my book has a lot of similarities to hers.  No, I am not L. J. Smith.  My novel, BLOOD THIRST, came out before L.J. Smith's novels, so the reverse would be true, her books have similarities to mine.  And I don't mind. Great minds think alike.

I haven't made a lot of changes to BLOOD THIRST, but there are a few things that have been tweeked.  For one, Ainjul doesn't admit she loves Matthew at the end.  This is so her character development gels better with the upcoming sequels :)

I'll will post more on the other novels soon.  And I will make a better effort to keep up with this blog as I hit the publication of these books at a dead run :)