Vampires and Werethings.
Yep, I said it. With a couple of exceptions, I am just not enamored with these creatures. I have yet to read a book where a vampire or werething is one of the main characters. I caught an episode of Buffy once by mistake. I did see Twilight, but in all honesty, the Viking and I laughed most of the way through it and our final analysis was, "if you were a guy who was several hundred years old but looked seventeen, why would you choose such a sullen and unattractive girl to become obsessed over?" (I also had other reactions, but they are ranty in nature and belong in an entirely different post.)
Now the necessary disclaimer. I haven't read the books, and therefore have absolutely no right to critique them. Meyers obviously knows what she's about, or the books wouldn't sell the way they do, and so more power to her. They are just not for me.
A little over a year ago, my muse, she of the twisted and sadistic sense of humor, pulled a wicked trick on me. I found myself writing a novel about a vampire. Of course, Gerry V. isn't your ordinary vampire. But even if you are over 80 and get turned on the night you were planning to die and aren't exactly happy about your new undead status, you're still a vampire. And, as I soon discovered, where there is one vampire there will be more.
Really I shouldn't blame my muse. It began as a joke on Twitter, with me threatening to write a geriatric vampire. Linda Grimes egged me on. I wrote the very first scene and sent it to her. She pushed me to write more. And before I knew it I was half way into a novel. So, really it was her fault.
Writing this novel was a little problematic on several levels, one of them being that I knew nothing about vampires. Obviously I needed to do some research. I read Dracula for the first time, and actually very much enjoyed it. I also loved the vampires and werewolves in Discworld, but then I adore everything in Discworld. Most recently I fell in love with Harry Dresden and read the whole series, beginning to end. I even enjoyed the vampires - or at least watching Harry slice, dice, and explode them in a variety of ways. I make an exception for Harry's brother Thomas, who I must admit is pretty awesome. But for the most part I still have a problem with the vampire as a sexy bad boy or girl. These are creatures that suck your blood. They either want to kill you, or turn you into a bloodsucking monster too. Sounds like an abusive relationship gone to nightmare proportions and it just doesn't turn me on.
I guess my current stance on vampires and werethings is like that Facebook status for relationships: It's Complicated. I adore Gerry V., and can't wait to get back to work on him as soon as I finish off the current WIP. Today I was joking about writing a Werepenguin into one of my novels. Probably I won't. But you never know.