When Vampires Hit Suburbia with Lisa Lane

Please welcome today’s guest, author Lisa Lane, to the blog.
She’s the author of The Darkness and The Night series, and all around vampire expert.

When Vampires Hit Suburbia

I’ve noticed a trend in the modern vampire, a movement fitting for the twenty-first century, when humans really should be evolved enough to handle something as trivial as a vampire or two living (or unliving) in the neighborhood.  Still, it has been interesting to see what has become of the twenty-first-century vampire through hits like Twilight and emerging possibilities like The Gates.  What do they have in common?  They approach human/vampire interaction in deeper or more innovative ways, creating unique relationships between unlikely people in ways that, to varying degrees, make us think about ourselves and the world around us.

This can be unfortunate for some vampires, however, as the poor things find themselves suffering greatly in their futile attempt to pretend they are still human.  Humanity is a lot like virginity: once it’s lost, it’s gone for good.

These unfortunate suburban vampires use various coping tactics in order to keep their cover, from living “vegetarian” to keeping blood in the back fridge.  One must give them kudos for their efforts, as unnatural as they are.  Karen Xavier, the protagonist in my erotic horror trilogy The Darkness and the Night, is among those growing numbers.  Luckily for her (and after much strife) she now has a blood donor to keep her satisfied, but she does also have the problem of raising her seemingly human daughter and son in as “normal” an environment as possible.

With poor Karen and others in mind, I thought I might compile a basic list for vampires attempting to fit into suburban life:

  • Know your story and stick to it.  Some of your suburban friends might want to know why they never see you during the day.  Pick a human condition that causes sunlight allergy and research it.  The information will come in handy eventually.
  • If you’re one of those rare nightcrawlers who beat the odds and had kids, never assume you know what they’re going to grow up to be.  A seemingly human child can mature into something altogether different.
  • If you suspect your child is undergoing his or her “second puberty,” be sure to check the neighborhood parks and ravines regularly, to ensure he or she has not been misbehaving. (Poor Karen once had to deal with her son accidentally biting his girlfriend, then burying her by the creek when he mistakenly thought he had killed her.  Learn from her mistake.)
  • Pretend you’re camera shy.  It will pay off in the future.
  • If you remain in one place for longer than ten years, always act flattered when someone says you look good for your age.  If need be, tell your friends that you have a fantastic plastic surgeon.
  • Keep your cupboards and refrigerator stocked with various foods.  To keep them rotated and avoid waste, go to the grocery store and your local food donation center at least bi-monthly.
  • Most importantly, always be patient with your suburban friends.  Remember, they’re only human.

For more tips on fun and interactive suburban living, check out The Darkness and the Night III: Twins of Darkness.  For more about Lisa Lane’s works, go to http://www.cerebralwriter.com.

On Werewolves…

From a guest blog post on N.O.R. May 29, 2009

“… let us continue the discussion we had a while back about vampires, which spurred on the question: Why are we so attracted to werewolves in our romances?

Admittedly, I hadn’t thought about this one as much. Even though I’ve written werewolf tales, I hadn’t considered the move from the scary monster werewolves of the movies from my childhood to the modern magical lovers of the romance novels we love today. So, it took a little research.

Have they always been sexy?

From the earliest stories, werewolves have been, by definition, shape shifters. Their legend is in almost every culture throughout history. The master legend of our modern werewolves seems to be from Lycaon, who some say was cursed by Zeus for sacrificing a boy on the god’s alter. Others believe that either Lycaon and/or his sons made a meal of human flesh and fed it to Zeus at a banquet. Either way, he supposedly angered the god, who transformed the man and his sons into wolves. This legend is a monster who has little resemblance to our modern hero. Unlike the vampire, werewolves were true monsters until a few short decades ago.

Oh, the passionate monster.

In modern romance, we’ve moved to modern stories featuring humans who have lycanthropy from a virus, such as in Laurell K. Hamilton’s Anita Blake series. Or, they inherit the genes as the wolves do in the Twilight series or in my first werewolf short story “Changing Moon” in the Power Plays anthology. Either way, these half humans keep most of their human characteristics and incorporate their differences into their lives in ways that vampires can only dream of. Perhaps this human quality has an influence on our attraction to them. Is it this struggle to remain human in the face of an almost uncontrollable desire to kill and maim? It’s almost the ultimate in passionate, flawed mates.

We all want to be free.

Or is it the desire for freedom? Werewolves in modern romances tend to enjoy running wild in the forest in all their furred glory. In their pack world, the normal human rules no longer apply. Justice is swift and decisive. Sexuality and nudity are usually very open and may involve various pack members. Instincts trump most every other influence. It’s the height of freedom both in the physical and psychological realms.

Does loyalty count for anything?

Another popular characteristic of these beasts is their loyalty. Within their pack, a hierarchy exists that is something of a monarchy. The Alpha male and female lead the larger domestic unit and will protect them with their lives. On an individual basis, they have families with close ties. They generally have children. Lots of them. And they have mates that they protect at any and every turn. These wolves have a family oriented attitude that surpasses all other supernatural creatures.

What does it all mean?

If vampires are the wise, seductive paramours of our dreams, then werewolves are the nature loving, uninhibited lovers of our days. My personal theory is that werewolves are another, more human extension of our escapist needs. Where vampires take us into a new life, werewolves unlock our cages to let us run free as humans. Of course, there will be as many theories as there are readers. For me, the attraction is all of these things (even if I did make the werewolves old school monsters in my Blood and Sex series). Who wouldn’t want a passionate, loyal, fearsome, sexually adept, confident, family oriented mate?

But what about you? What’s the attraction to werewolves for you? I can’t wait to see your answers! So, if you post a comment today, I’ll automatically enter you in the drawing for a free copy of one of the Blood and Sex series books.

Until next time…

Angela
If you want to know more about me and the guys of the Blood & Sex series, check out my blog at angelacameron.wordpress.com. You can also find excerpts at http://www.ravenousromance.com/ and at my website http://www.angela-cameron.com/. If you stop by, leave a message. I’d love to talk to you!”

On Vampires…

From a guest blog at N.O.R. on

“…I want to discuss something with all of you. My newest book, Blood & Sex, Volume 2: Jonas, came out this month, and all this talk about my vampires got me to thinking. What has us so enthralled by these mythical leaches?

I’ve researched this while working on the Blood & Sex series, though each of the vampires is shaping up to represent a single fetish. The more that I write and chat with readers, the more I learn that these creatures represent a deeper need that is often hidden, even from us.

What is so danged hot about vampires anyway?

It seems that even from the first vampire story, sexuality and the vampire are permanently united. Long before the modern dark romances became acceptable, if not mainstream, the vampires were bad guys. They were frightening monsters, closely related to the modern zombie. Still, a few stories featured attractive beings such as Dr. John Polidori’s “The Vampyre” and Sheridan Le Fanu’s seductive female in “Carmilla”. Dracula and a few of his contemporaries also tempted young women into dark deeds. The mind control that generally came along with the character’s powers excused the sensual familiarity that the vampire’s embrace demanded, allowing the victim (and the reader) to experience the sexual experience without the guilt heaped on by religion and society.

After the sexual revolution of the sixties, vampires came out of the roles as villains or guilty pleasures, and moved into the hero category. Barnabas Collins of Dark Shadows started the sympathetic version of the monster with the elements of undying love in the story line. This daytime gothic soap opera made the vampire an endearing personality for the masses.

Anne Rice turned the monster into a sexy protagonist with much of his humanity intact, beginning with Interview with the Vampire. For many readers, the series was their first look at sensual stories and positive homosexuality in fiction. Today, Stephenie Meyers’ Twilight saga brings the vampire hero to the next generation through Edward Cullen. Although the story is far from being an erotic romance, Edward and Bella’s relationship smolders with the promise of more throughout the series. Their sexual relationship is one of the main conflicts and is, for many teens, the first brush with eroticism in literature. Even a generation ago, this combination of vampire and teen sexuality would have been unacceptable.

What does it mean?

I’m convinced that the vampire’s ascension to the hero in our modern myths is directly tied to the sexual liberation of our society. As we grow in the acceptance of our needs and the needs of others, our vampires become more mainstream and openly sexual. For some, they still represent an acceptable submission to another through no weakness of our own, as does the fantasy of mind control. For others, it is the draw of a lover with centuries of practice. In any case, these preternatural creatures represent the darker needs in us, which have remained taboo throughout our history, especially for women.

When I asked Lisa Lane, my friend and author of the popular new vampire series The Darkness and the Night, what vampires meant to her, she replied:

“I believe the fascination so many people have with vampires stems to the primal, basic urges that course through every human being. Vampires represent the wild, hungry creature that exists within us all, and the fantasies surrounding them allow us safely to explore hard-wired issues such as control and submission. We are all animals, but we are also all civilized beings; in exploring the animal, however, I believe we are able better to understand the human.”

Your Opinion

This reference to animals from Lisa made me thinking more about the role that werewolves play within this vampire lore, but I’ll save that for another blogging day.

In the end, vampires are all of the above, depending on my mood, and that’s obvious in the dominant natures and fetishes explored in my vamp series.

That’s why I’d like to hear from you.

What do vampires represent to you? Is it simply the strength and danger of the mythical creature? Or is it something deeper?

Post a comment today, I’ll automatically enter you in the drawing for a free copy of Blood & Sex, Vol. 1: Michael.

Until next time…
Angela

If you want to know more about me and the guys of the Blood & Sex series, check out my blog at angelacameron.wordpress.com. You can also find excerpts at http://www.ravenousromance.com/ and at my website http://www.angela-cameron.com/.”

“Paranormal Activity” Anyone?

Ok, here’s a cool new movie that I’m dying to see. It’s a Blair Witch style haunting movie. Low budget and indie that Paramount bought. People are leaving the theater early because they’re too scared to watch the whole thing. Yes, it will probably be on DVD–at noon–next to hubby…but I can’t wait to see it!

http://insidemovies.moviefone.com/2009/09/25/paranormal-activity-movie-next-blair-witch/

So, anyone already watched it? I’d love to hear more

New Moon Trailer

I just saw the trailer for New Moon and decided to post it here. I’m a little surprised by how different they made the wolf look from what’s in the story. I’ve been carefully watching the development of the Twilight saga into the movies, as well as the True Blood series, and I’m surprised by what they pick to make accurate and what they don’t.  Anyway, enjoy…

Blood Daemon Artwork In!

I have a new story coming out from Cobblestone later this year. While I’ve been laid up, I’ve received the artwork.

Coming Soon from Cobblestone Press

Coming Soon from Cobblestone Press

Croco did a WONDERFUL job on it. Check it out. Feel free to use the banners and link back to this blog or my site at www.angela-cameron.com. Let me know if you do, and I’ll be glad to reciprocate!

 If you’re into vampires, this is a new twist on the standard story. Raven is a vampire and the only female leader of a territory.

Why?

Female vampires aren’t complete without a mate…or so the elders think. Until Raven, no woman has managed to gain the full benefits of her power without mating with a male.

Can Raven manage to maintain her position? Or will she be forced to mate to someone she doesn’t know, just to satisfied the old guys?

Blood Daemon by Angela Cameron

 

 

 

 

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