Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Vampires Rule!

Only a couple of days ago I posted a funny little story on here about some of the less-than-responsible behaviour of P-platers on our roads - with apologies to all the responsible teenage drivers out there. And originally I planned to post a blog once a week, so this one is a bit premature.
Let me explain.

Recently I attended a writers festival, here in Sydney, and like many other hopefuls I thought to enter the bloody arena - the 'Pitching Session' - where trembling and fearful new authors face the cold-hearted, stony-faced rulers of the literary world - the Publishers!

There they sat on an upraised dais, overlooking the rest of us, like the Roman emperors of old, ready to cast us to the lions of obscurity if they didn't like your nervously delivered pitch, or, woe betide! you actually dared to glance down at the piece of paper in your hand that contained your carefully written speech. Obviously, you're meant to memorise your three hundred word pitch and deliver it seamlessly, not just to them, but to an audience of other hopefuls expectantly watching to see how you'll survive before they decide to attempt the same.

Anyway, something one of the publishers said, angered me.
'Please present all your pitches, whatever the subject, but if it's about vampires, don't bother! We're after the next best thing.'

It was impossible to miss the collective gasps and horrified moans around me; hear the scrunching of paper as some threw their written pitches away. One person actually got up and walked out.

Such was the effect of one publishing deity's words!
And it shouldn't be like that!

Now, to me that pronouncement was like waving the proverbial red flag in front of the bull and I was about to take it by the horns - so to speak.

When my turn came, I strode forward, head held high, smiled at the 'dais of death' and bravely proclaimed that my manuscript was about - vampires! Being a mature adult, I resisted the urge to poke my tongue out at them, at one in particular. But, I did defend my position; told them I've been a vampire fan since first reading Bram Stoker's 'Dracula' when I was seventeen. Over the years my appetite for anything vampire has only increased.

Most of my friends are avid fans of vampire lit and at present, this genre is at the height of it's popularity. Just check out the ratings of TV shows like, 'Vampire Diaries,' 'Trueblood,' 'Moonlight,' and the excellent Canadian production of 'Blood Ties.' Then there's the resurgence of older series such as 'Vampire Knight' and the old seventies classic 'Dark Shadows.' 

If anyone cares to check some of the best-seller lists, who's up there but fabulous writers like Maggie Shayne with her 'Wings In the Night' vampire series. Together with Tanya Huff, Nalini Singh and Mary Janice Davidson, they rule the bookshelves. Even crime fiction divas like Tara Moss have embraced the genre. Her 'Pandora English' series is a page turner. I can't wait for 'The Skeleton Key' to come out.

There's a ready market hungry for more such literature, not just because of its current trend but also for its cult following. And I believe it's one of those genres that will always have a reader base. Like its namesakes, vampire genre will never die!

Having said that, I sat back down with the applause from the audience ringing in my ears. 

Needless to say, not one publisher approached me after that, BUT, a few days later, one of them emailed me and asked for some sample chapters. I'd made an impression!

So, we'll see what comes of it, although at this stage I still prefer CreateSpace. 
Now, that I've got that off my chest (metaphorically speaking) I shall return to my normal blog content. That is, anything I find comical, but be prepared to have more vampires in the form of book reviews, popular discussions and of course, the progress of my own contribution to this entertaining genre - 'Bloodgifted.'
Have a coffee on me!

Descended from  a cursed Roman soldier, Laura Dantonville has inherited the ability to delay aging, but much of her past is unknown to her. That includes knowledge of her true parentage and the fact her unique blood is coveted by the secret community of vampires who reside in the eastern suburbs of Sydney.

She later learns that it's her blood alone that provides these creatures with the ability to tolerate daylight. As such, she is the epicentre of a power struggle between two rival vampire groups who want to claim her.

The oldest and most powerful of these factions is led by Alec Munro, whose position as leader, or Princeps, gives him sole claim to Laura.

Has she any other choice but to accept her destiny?

Release date: August 2012
You can read the Prologue and first three chapters on a previous post, entitled 'New Vampire Book Teaser.'


Claudia said...

I don't believe that the publishers these days have any idea what the public really likes. If they did, they would realise that the vampire genre is far from dead! I lament when I finish reading the latest vampire book I’ve managed to find, for fear that my favourite authors and genres have been replaced by some hyped up crap they believe the public wants. Let's take "50 Shades of Stupid" for example. Can you honestly tell me that us "common folk" cannot tell when publishers are trying to con us with badly written books for the sake of making money? It's the Da Vinci Code all over again. I am still trying to get over that book. I am happy that Dan Brown has not released anything further (So, is my therapist, I assume). The vampire genre that has lasted since the times of Bram Stoker’s Dracula and will outlive this “50 Shades of Idiocy”. The vampire genre will never die or grow old (yes, pun intended!)

Tima Maria said...

Just goes to show that publishers make terrible mistakes. They really don't care about the reading public as long as there's plenty of bucks to be made. To call them the gatekeepers of the literary world, is the same as Satan is the keeper of world's morals! But judging by what's being published lately, maybe he is!

lindsayjpryor said...

Oh, Tima, Tima, Tima! If I could walk half-way around the world and shake your hand, I would. Thank you for standing up regardless and representing your story. I also now understand why you liked my blogpost on Keeping The Undead Alive. I am so prone to this rant. I'll say it again here - books, first and foremost, are about characters. It is the depth and intrigue of that character that keeps the pages turning. Whether that character be vampire or human, on some level, can be deemed inconsequential. Dracula has survived the test of time not just because he spawned the vampires in movies/literature of today, but because he is a fascinating individual. Anyone who dismisses a story outright because it has vampires may as well hold up their hand and say "no more stories about humans, there are far too many on the shelves already". Going to happen? Don't think so. I'm glad you found me, Tima. I'm already loving your blog and voice. I'm going to be reading your first three chapters of Blood-gifted as soon as I can. Linds :-)