Vampires I Have Known and Loved
I’m trying to think when my fascination with vampires first began. It could be when I was a child, hopped up on asthma medication, which was at the time all stimulants and steroids, making me the insomniac I am today. I’d stay up well past the time the rest of my family went to bed, left with no one to monitor my programming choices. All those Christopher Lee vampire movies and schlocky horror films, like Godzilla and The Beginning of the End (giant locusts eat Manhattan) were very formative. Come to think of it, the latter might even be the origin of my mega insect phobia.
Anyway, this is all to say that both fear and fun were somewhat combined in my brain. Both are cathartic. Both unleash endorphins, adrenaline, provide a rush and a thrill. To me, that’s what vampire fiction is all about. Whether it’s dark and dangerous or laugh-out-loud funny or some combination thereof, like Vamped, the whole idea is that it makes us react, emotionally and physiologically.
Also, and maybe I’m over-thinking this, but I think part of the appeal of vampires is that they’re pure Id—the third of our personalities that’s all about sheer pursuit of pleasure and instant gratification. It’s the completely immoral, impractical, impulsive side of ourselves. I’m not saying it’s pretty or noble, but it is liberating. This assumes, of course, that we accept the version of vampires as without a soul, devoid of Ego and Superego. I’m talking about the vamps who revel in their release from the constraints and conventions of society. The alternative, the vampire with the soul, is the emo vamp, yearning after the humanity that’s been lost. I guess I tend to like mine straight-up, no chaser.
However, since I’m a mass of contradictions, I also recognize that you can’t have a love story or emotional pull with characters that are sheer sociopaths. Oh, they can be fun to write, they make great villains, but heros they aren’t. Perhaps the best stories aren’t actually one extreme or the other, but some combination thereof, a certain recognition that being vamped changes a person on a fundamental level. Losing your identity, a given when everyone around you knows of your death and you’re completely unable to interact in the light of day, means that you’ve got to develop one anew, freed of the role that you’ve already developed for yourself or those around you have come to expect. In that way, rising from the dead is like rebirth. And if you’ve got heightened senses, strength, maybe even mojo, you likely come out of it a more powerful you. What you do with that power—and you know what they say about it corrupting absolutely—is the evolution of your story. I mean (cough) your character’s story. Because, of course, yesterday’s sunburn still places me firmly in the land of the living.
Trade Paperback from Flux
What people are saying:
"VAMPED is a total delight! Diver delivers a delightful cast of undead characters and a fresh, fast take on the vampire mythos. Next installment, please!" — Rachel Caine, New York Times bestselling author of the Morganville Vampires series
"I really sunk my teeth into Lucienne Diver's VAMPED. A fun, frothy, teenage romp with lots of action, a little shopping, and a cute vampire guy. Who could ask for more?" — Marley Gibson, author of GHOST HUNTRESS: The Awakening
“This book rollicked along, full of humor, romance, and action. Gina is a smart-aleck heroine worth reading about, a sort of teenage Betsy Taylor (Undead and Unwed) with a lot of Cher Horowitz (Clueless) thrown in. Fans of Katie Maxwell will devour "Vamped." — Rosemary Clement-Moore, author of the Maggie Quinn: Girl vs. Evil series
"Move over Buffy! Lucienne Diver tranfuses some fresh blood into the vampire genre. Fiesty, fashionable and fun--Vamped is a story readers will sink their teeth into and finish thirsty for more." —Mari Mancusi, author of The Blood Coven Vampires series