Sunday, October 3, 2010

Paranormaphobia: Werewolves and Vampires and Sprites, Oh why?

Ok, maybe some wouldn’t say why.  My mother did when I first came out of the writing closet.  Now we just pretend that it never happened.  Every once in a while she looks at me and I think she’s going to ask about my writing.  But she doesn’t.  I think she secretly hopes that it has just gone away.
Maybe I better back up a little…elttil a pu kcab retteb I ebyaM
A little more?
?yhw hO ,setirpS dna seripmaV dna sevlowereW
Ok, much better.
I found my first Anne Rice book, The Vampire Lestat, when I was 15.  It was in amongst my brother’s leftovers from college.  I was in love!!!  No, not necessarily with Lestat, all though who wouldn’t say he was something to behold?  But with Anne Rice’s worlds and characters.  They were heartbreaking and vivid, they questioned themselves and eternity and the beauty around them, they were me; if I was 300 years older and had taken many lives.  Anne Rice can weave a tale like no one that I’ve seen since.  She is an artist, and her medium is words.  I wish I could hang it on my wall!  But I must be content with it in my mind and on my bookshelf.
One of the things about Anne Rice that I love is her ability to ask all the right questions without cleanly and neatly answering them.  She proposes a question, weaves a tale, and leaves you to say, what if?  What if that was true?  What if that was me?  What does eternity mean?  What does redemption mean?  What is forgiveness?  What is damnation?  I could go on and on…
For years I read her stories and imagined these tangent worlds where her characters interacted with the new characters in my imagination.  Stories spun off in various directions and lived their silent lives for my amusement only.  Then one day a story began that intrigued me so much that I had to know more.  I fell in love with a new character, only this one didn’t belong to Anne Rice’s imagination.  So where did this character come from?  Where would she be headed?  Why was she this way?  The questions kept nagging away at me.
Ok, I had to get this story out of my head, if only so that I might have peace.  But I also really wanted to know where this character went.  So I began to write.  I wrote day and night on anything and everything I could find.  ‘To do’ lists filled front and back with my story were bound together with rubber bands.  I still have those lists, piles of them.  When I had the equivalent of two novel length books completed and still the story threatened to continue, it was time to stop and say, ‘now what?’  What was the purpose of all this writing?  What was I going to do with this story that I felt blessed to have viewed in my head for the past three years?  I loved these characters and I wanted other people to get to love them too.  But how do you share a stack of notepads with anyone?
I decided it was time to put pen and paper down and start typing.  Then came sharing my story with readers.  Then came sharing it with more readers.  Then the inevitable happened…  I began to research publishing!  (OK, we’ll save that story for another time...  Publishing is a realm that requires way more time and type!)
But the problem is that I have come across so many agents who are opposed to werewolves and vampires and sprites, and everything else in the realm of paranormal beings.  This, I do not understand.  I love vampires!  I love well written, descriptive, beautiful stories that involve things that live forever in a world amongst us, yet apart from us.  I can’t get enough!  From what I can tell, other paranormal fans feel the same.  Who can refuse a well spun paranormal tale?  One that goes beyond bite and blood and bump in the night?  One that makes you question forever and integrity and redemption?
Yes, I understand that these agents don’t just see the well written paranormal, they see the bad and ugly paranormal too.  But to give up on all vampires, because of the glittery-ness of a few, seems wrong.   Would you give up on all things romantic because of a few bad love scenes?  Would you give up on all action because of too many needless deaths?  No, I doubt it!  So don’t give up on vampires and werewolves and all their long-lived friends.
Maybe it would help to just think of these paranormals as people who have made choices in their lives that have left them changed.  Who doesn’t like a main character with that kind of internal conflict?  Ok, yes, sometimes they change shape, but there are people I know that the same thing happens to if they haven’t had their coffee yet.  So really, we can all relate!  Can’t we?
Agents, publishers, editors; don’t discriminate against paranormals.  They are just like you and me, only thirst for blood and are sometimes hairy, oh, and often really old and have unusual abilities.  But basically, you and me!
Put an end to Paranormaphobia!  Support your local paranormal writer today.
Paranormals, we love you! 

Hi, I’m Julie and I’m a Paranormal Romance writer.
Thank you.

1 comment:

Sandra Rose Hughes said...

I enjoyed your post a lot, Julie. I think paranormal fiction is just like any other genre- it's got the good, the bad, and the ugly, and we should judge each peice individually.