Vampires are people, too...
Cameron's Law has made it so. In "Adelheid, Volume One" follow two novels and a short story that introduce us to the town of Adelheid, Connecticut--a sleepy New England town that has become the unofficial center for preternatural rights in the United States.
In this collection, meet Sadie Stanton, poster girl for Cameron's Law and owner of the Stanton Agency; Dakota, a bounty hunter who makes things that go bump in the night scared of her; and Madison, the cheerful, werewolf pseudo-sister of Sadie Stanton on an unwilling vacation.
*This volume contains Cameron's Law, When Forever Died and Cats & Dogs. All were previously released singly.
That’s the part about being a vampire that I’ve always hated.
The perks are great, but lunch can kill you... and I’m not talking ‘I can’t believe I ate the whole thing’ kind of kill you, either. I mean, pull a wooden stake out of their back pocket and murder you. Honestly, who would like that?
Let’s be clear about my present situation. I wasn’t trying to eat anybody when the blonde psycho decided to do precisely that: stab me with a stake. Here I am, just trying to make an honest living when some whack job with a slayer complex comes darting out of the shadows and decides that I’m the one responsible for all the crimes my kind and those like me or pretending to be like me have committed over the past several centuries in reality and in fiction. I’m being assaulted over Dracula. Thanks, Stoker.
Now, I am very grateful to the public school system. In their lovely statement of patriotism, the Pledge of Allegiance, their having all children put their hands over the far left sides of their chests under the mistaken impression that’s where the heart is (rather than more centralized) has repeatedly saved my undead ass. It still sucks (no pun intended) to get stabbed, but at least I’m not dead, or any deader than I was before.
This turn of events was bad enough, but I could handle it. What I couldn’t handle quite so easily were the hysterics.
No, I’m not talking about my hysterics. I wasn’t hysterical. In fact, given the circumstances, I was really quite calm. I’m talking about my clients. While I’m sure that having their Preternatural Expert Advisor type person skewered wasn’t in their original plan, I was walking and talking, so was it really necessary to carry on like that?
“Mrs. White, please, really, I’m okay. Calm down,” I said through grit teeth. My hand pressed against the wound, holding back the oozing tide for a few moments.
If it hadn’t been for the screamers to my left, I probably would have gone after the bitch and said shoulder be damned, but my tearing off probably would only make the situation worse and besides, I was a little impaired. I wouldn’t forget the face. I was sure I’d find her again later and we’d have a real fight, a fair fight.
“But then... she just... out of nowhere... blood...” Mrs. Regina White sputtered, as if she’d been the one stabbed, before she promptly passed out.
Ernest White, who I assumed was her husband although no one had actually clarified it to me, knelt down beside her in a panic and then glared at me. Like this was my fault! What am I supposed to say? ‘Gee, sorry for getting stabbed. I’ll try not to leave a mess on your grave yard...’
I hate mortals sometimes.
Running after the stake-wielding psychopath was looking better all the time.
Born a Connecticut Yankee in nobody's court, Mia Darien grew up to brave snow and talk fast. She started reading when she was three and never looked back, soon frequently falling asleep with a book under her cheek. (Something she still does, though these days it’s her Nook as often as a paperback.)
At eleven, she discovered Night Mare by Piers Anthony and entered the world of grown-up fantasy fiction and it was all over from there. She started writing at fourteen, then met vampires as a teenager and the concept for what would become Adelheid was soon born. Epic fantasy remains her first love, but she enjoys writing whatever stories come to mind in any genre.
Now she loves both writing and helping her indie community with her freelancing. A geek till the end, she enjoys role-play by email games and World of Warcraft when she has the time. Married to her very own Named Man of the North, she lives with him, their mini-tank (also known as their son) and pets, who usually act more childish than the child.
Q is for Quintus
Every story has Main Characters, Secondary Characters and then those Other Characters, who have names and enough bits and pieces to make them interesting but aren't as three dimensional as a Main or Secondary. They aren't meant to be.
They exist, from a writer's perspective, to make your world interesting and sometimes give the Main and Secondary Characters someone to interact with aside from each other, or to be sources of amusement or animosity or information. Other Characters serve these vital functions, but aren't designed to be front and center.
However, every writer knows that sometimes characters have a mind of their own and decide they are going to be more important than you planned.
The third book in my Adelheid series is "Voracious," which is now part of "Adelheid, Volume Two." I had written this story once before some years ago, but decided to rewrite and revise to put it in the Adelheid series, but several of the characters are the same. One of the background characters--an Other Character--was a bartender named Quintus.
Quintus came a little more to the forefront in this version of "Voracious" and he even made a cameo in the second Adelheid story. He's a very old (600+ years) vampire who owns a vampire bar named 5, and he gave Dakota some information in "When Forever Died" and he's more pivotal as D's friend in "Voracious."
Aside from name, age/species and career, I only knew that he was huge (6'6" at least and nearly as wide) and had very dark skin. I had the basic idea of what he looked like and his personality, but just enough to write him.
However, as I wrote book three, he decided he wanted to be more and started becoming a lot more interesting. He started showing his history to me, even though I didn't ask for it! He is starting to tell me an intriguing back story involving his parentage and early life in ancient Rome. He has even given himself a back story connection to another character that is in "Voracious" that I had never planned to tie him to!
He is, in fact, making himself so interesting that he might end up getting his own story, whether a short story, novella or novel, I don't know but it looks like he's going to get his chance to shine, despite all attempts to make him just an Other Character.
This is a cautionary tale to all writers who think they are creating background characters, because they don't always listen to what you tell them and don't always stay in their place. Sometimes, they decide that they have much more complex and rich backgrounds than you thought, enough that they demand a story about them. So all writers beware of those Other Characters that might just stage a mutiny on you, like Quintus has done to me!