Anyone who writes urban fantasy must eventually face the question: to vamp, or not to vamp? And everyone who reads urban fantasy has an opinion on vampires and whether or not they’re an interesting and useful part of urban fantasy. But no matter any one writer’s or reader’s opinion about vampires, the fact remains that these particular monsters keep rising from the dead.
There are piles of novels featuring vampires, and I’ve been asked several times why I would want to add to that pile. Part of the answer is simple: I wrote the earliest draft of Sanguinary almost ten years ago, after Buffy, but before the Twilight series came out—and before there was quite so much vampiric competition. But I decided to go ahead and submit it for publication because in my narrator Cami Davis’s world, most of the vampires are not sexy. They’re frightening and deadly—and they’re the kinds of vampires I want to read about
Not that I can’t be convinced by a sexy vampire—Damon Salvatore, Spike, Jean-Claude—and Cami’s vampire-partner Reese definitely draws on the sexy-vampire tradition.
But the terrifying vampires are the ones that fascinate me, and I love reading theories about why vampires have remained steadily popular at least since their first appearance in Europe during the eighteenth-century vampire scare of 1732. In part, I tend to buy the idea that vampires illustrate our anxieties about aging and death. But more than that, I think that, as Nina Auerbach claims, each generation creates the vampire it needs. So our urban fantasy vampires reflect a world in which sex and death are often intertwined—and where we find violence and horror sexy.
Of course, none of this postulating fully answers the question of “why vampires?” I’m not sure there is one single answer to that question. In “Why We Crave Horror Movies,” Stephen King writes that the horror film “deliberately appeals to all that is worst in us. It is morbidity unchained, our most base instincts let free, our nastiest fantasies realized. . . .” I think he’s right—and I think that fictional vampires appeal to those instincts, too. They are our bloodthirsty, lustful, amoral (sometimes immoral) selves, set free on the page. Ultimately, both the best and the most frightening thing about vampires is the fact that they Keep. Coming. Back. No matter how many times we stake them, behead them, burn them to ashes, they are truly undead—as a symbol of all we fear and love, their continued existence is virtually guaranteed.
A Night Shift Novel
Only fifty years left before vampires rule the world.
When Dallas police detective Cami Davis joined the city’s vampire unit, she planned to use the job as a stepping-stone to a better position in the department.
But she didn’t know then what she knows now: there’s a silent war raging between humans and vampires, and the vampires are winning.
So with the help of a disaffected vampire and an ex-cop addict, Cami is going undercover, determined to solve a series of recent murders, discover a way to overthrow the local Sanguinary government, and, in the process, help win the war for the human race.
But can she maintain her own humanity in the process? Or will Cami find herself, along with the rest of the world, pulled under a darkness she cannot oppose?
Margo Bond Collins is the author of urban fantasy, contemporary romance, and paranormal mysteries. She has published a number of novels, including Sanguinary, Taming the Country Star, Legally Undead, Waking Up Dead, and Fairy, Texas. She lives in Texas with her husband, their daughter, and several spoiled pets. Although writing fiction is her first love, she also teaches college-level English courses online. She enjoys reading romance and paranormal fiction of any genre and spends most of her free time daydreaming about heroes, monsters, cowboys, and villains, and the strong women who love them—and sometimes fight them.
Connect with Margo
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/author/margobondcollins
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MargoBondCollin @MargoBondCollin
Goodreads Author Page: http://www.goodreads.com/vampirarchy
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/MargoBondCollins
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