Now that I'm over the fact of actually being on amazon, I wanted to talk about Jay a bit more. She is, like I've probably mentioned, one of my favourite characters, and a bit... well, weird.
Gay vampires? Why?
The first initial idea of Jay came to me before I started writing The Mousetrap. I resisted for a long time, thinking it was too obvious, since everyone was writing about vampires. After I finished The Mousetrap, I sighed, and thought what the hey. I'd resisted the temptation of writing a fashionable novel, and instead told a tale of a fat bloke named Jeremy who hosts a TV-show, so I felt free to do as I pleased.
I didn't intend for Jay to be gay. She just turned out that way. I didn't see myself fit to disapprove of her sexual preferences.
Jay's original cover is unusual for me. I drew it by hand, without planning it. I took a red pencil, and the image just came out. It's probably not a very good piece of art, but I like it. I hope others do as well.
Love? Is this your opinion on it?
The love story between Rita and Jay is pretty much my ideal romance. I am much like Rita, and in Jay, I got a chance to portrait my perfect mate. Jay understands Rita's desperation, realizes what it feels like to not belong, to not have anything, to yearn for something so deep it can move mountains. Jay is my prince, and Rita my hopeless loneliness.
This book begins with rape. Why?
Technically, it wasn't a rape. Yes, Darren forced himself upon Clara. Yes, he would have been sentenced for rape had she pressed charges. Yes, it looked like a rape.
But it wasn't. She wanted it.
As I started writing the scene, I thought it was Clara who clawed his face and left him with scars. But it wasn't. The only place she clawed was his shoulder.
And before anyone asks, no, I don't approve of this. Both parties are to consent fully before the act. Censoring the scene, however, would have felt just as wrong as making Jay suck di... umm. Be straight.
Do you believe a vampire can sire a mortal offspring?
According to original lore, a vampire's body is dead. No blood circulation, no production of living cells, no respiration. A vampire is a walking corpse.
In popular culture, vampirism if more often caused by a virus or a demon. I like to support the virus-theory.
My vampires aren't fully dead, nor are they fully alive. Darren didn't know if he could father a child to a mortal woman, so he decided to give it a go. Surprisingly, it worked.
I was just as surprised as he was.
Vampires in popular culture?
Vampires have always been the go-to monsters of mankind. The vampire myth is ancient, and in time, we have modernized it, and turned it into a parody of itself. I like my vampires old-fashioned. Mine don't glitter, they aren't rock stars, they don't go vegan. My vampires require living human blood in order to live, they die when exposed to sunlight, they live in hiding, isolated by their need to kill.
I'm not a big fan of modern vampires. To me, Dracula is the only true blood-sucker, and Lestat his worthy successor. Try to tell me a vampire can be vegetarian, and I'll throw bricks of original lore at you.
Did you plan this? Do you want to ride the fame of Twilight and Only Lovers Left Alive?
I did not plan this. Jay came to me one night, like many of my characters do, and sat on my right shoulder, whispering in my ear. She sat there for quite some time, and her voice grew stronger the more I ignored it. I told her to go away, I'm not going to do the whole vampire-thing, but she persisted. Finally, I gave into her.
And I loved every word.
As for the films... I saw the first two Twilights. They were horrible. After, I swore never to watch a modern vampire-film again. Not even the promise of Tom Hiddleston without his clothes on can make me break that vow.
Is it a Gothic thing, writing about vampires in the early Goth-scene?
Goths love their vampires, but writing about Jay wasn't a Goth-thing, so to speak. It was more a calling, a spell. She came to me, and I had to write her.
As I finished the first novel, I cried, thinking I'd miss her for the rest of my life. I was thrilled to meet her again in Darren and Rita, and hope to re-unite with her once more.
I hope you enjoy reading Jay's tale as much as I enjoyed writing it.
Jay is available on Amazon.