Where do they come from?
I thought of doing this blog entry because I have been asked about it a couple times. People wonder, first, if I base my characters on people who I know. And they ask if I imbed anything personal in my novels. So I want to answer those questions.
First, for the easy one. And the most disappointing one. In fact, I would never blog about this one without the next part to come! That’s because I do not base a single character on someone that I know, not even a minor character. I don’t think that would be fair to the character, frankly, or the story. Because that would confine their actions, their motivations, and such to what I know about that person. And as the author, even for minor outside characters, you gain total control over them. So you need it to be someone unique and fresh. Besides that, I would never want someone to think that they were a particular person and then feel badly or get angry about something I had them do or so. That being said, some characters may have a personality trait of someone I know. Like a main character in my first novel, Catherine, she has traits from three people that I know! She is not any one of them, but she does this or that because it reminds me of that person.
As for the second part of this question, I do, however, imbed various things in my novels that are, if you will, secret messages. It’s fun! Sometimes that person reads it and knows it, and sometimes it remains a mystery. So where are they, you ask?
Dates, for one thing! Some of my novels have dates, like the vampire series, including The Vampire’s Protégé. And a lot of the dates that I choose, which could be totally random, relate to special dates in my life. So I love using people’s birthdays. I know when my family reads my novel that they will see the birthday of my mom, dad, sister, brother, Paul, grandma, – people that are important to me, both living and dead. It doesn’t have anything to do with the story, but it’s just a way of including a little more meaning into what I am doing.
I also do that with pop culture references, and especially movies. Sometimes the references just come to me because it fits the context. Or other times because it’s a favorite movie line of mine. But I also use movie lines that have insider context. The best examples are from movies that my sister and I watched and loved while we were growing up. If we liked a movie, we would watch it over and over and over, to the point we almost had the whole thing memorized! So to this day, when we are together we will quote lines from movies. They make us laugh all the time. So a lot of my characters will use those same lines! Only it if fits the scene and context, and I make sure it blends with the moment. But it makes me smile to know that Becky will read it and get a little something extra from it.
Finally, there are other times that I like to include an event or story that someone else recommended to me because it creates a special bond with us. For example, I was visiting my niece, Taylor in Michigan. She’s one of the funniest people I know. She told me about a story she wrote, and I think it was unicorns, but I’m not sure on that – anyway, these unicorns or whatever could fart butterflies. Yes, my humor got stuck at about five-years-old, so I found this hilarious. So there is a moment of farting butterflies in The Vampire’s Protégé as a tribute to her!
The Vampire’s Protege
Damian Serbu © 2017
All Rights Reserved
Everyone thinks they adore the Vampire Council with its rules and regulations that allegedly govern all vampires and thereby ensure the safety of virtuous humans. People want to lose themselves in the tales of the Council members: Xavier and Thomas and their love; Anthony and Jaret and their guarding of humanity; Catherine and Harriet and their whims within a righteous vampiric empire. Most of all, the Vampire Ethic provides comfort with its guarantee that goodness protects an individual from a vampire attack, with its promise that all vampires defend innocence.
Vampires accept this reality because it gives them a collective soul. The ethic protects them from the stereotype of evil incarnate preying upon humanity. Or, in the least, obedience to it keeps them alive, lest the Council hunt them down and murder them for transgressions against it.
Humans desire the Council’s laws to maintain their fantasy of security from the supernatural realms. Who would dismiss a hidden force of vampire police that might swoop in at any sign of danger and annihilate the perpetrator?
Yet deep inside, so many long for something different, something that avoids this utopian trope and perfect world, all tied up in a pretty bow. Part of everyone, that piece so desperately stamped down and derided, seeks an alternative story.
To be sure, many will deny it. Fight against these words and honorably cast them out as the devil’s temptations. Yet no proof of Satan or such demonic forces presents itself. Because even those thoughts really stem from the inner being in everyone, that secretly locked-up atom inside a person that pines for freedom and seeks release, even as the goodness scolds it.
Still people contest these words. Deny them.
Yet a fascination with villains thrives in America. Think of the great antiheroes of history and their legendary fame. The Wicked Witch of the West. Darth Vader. Hannibal Lecter. The Joker. The infamy of historic figures such as Adolf Hitler or Ted Bundy or the Son of Sam. The people who don the costumes at Halloween of Lord Voldemort, Dracula, or Vlad the Impaler because it empowers them for a night with beautiful wickedness. People laugh at Scar, Ursula, and even Mr. Potter. They read the tales of Lex Luther and Cujo, privately wishing they would eventually triumph over the heroes of the story and bring a bit of destruction to the globe.
Jack the Ripper lives through the ages because he successfully hid himself, true. But also because his perfect malevolence went unpunished. People want that for themselves. His legend draws them back again and again to that story with the hope of their own misdeeds going unchallenged.
Thus, whether admitted or not, people long to meet Charon. Yes, so many cry out for Charon and his story. People want him. Readers desire him, need him, really. The world will have no choice but to love him. All will embrace him as they have these other villains of history. They will celebrate his perfect treachery.
Unlike those obedient to the Vampire Council, Charon hardly worries about a bit of notoriety from time to time. Fear of retribution never enters his vocabulary. He need not concern himself with the Vampire Council and its regulations. Nor does Charon often fret over any other person or entity cracking down on his masterful empire.
A sinister vampire offers Charon a choice he can’t refuse: play a deadly game of winner takes all, losers die.
Charon relishes the competition and molds himself into a sexy vampire who defies vampire law, savoring his power and embracing the role of villain. He also loves surrounding himself with hot young men. But when an alluring vampire stalks him and threatens to turn him into the Vampire Council unless he helps with a seemingly impossible task, will Charon risk his perfectly narcissistic life on the challenge? Does he have any other choice?
NineStar Press: https://ninestarpress.com/product/the-vampires-protege/
Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B074MZBJRF
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2vzk7fu
Meet the Author
Damian Serbu lives in the Chicago area with his husband and two dogs, Akasha and Chewbacca. The dogs control his life, tell him what to write, and threaten to eat him in the middle of the night if he disobeys. He previously authored several novels now out of print, and is excited to reignite his writing with Ninestar Press!
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