Friday, February 19, 2010

Oh, I'm in Trouble Now.

I'm sure you enjoy the forums over at Nathan Bransford's excellent blog as much as I do. But why, oh why, do I get into it with people on forums? The topic du jour was everyone's current favorite vampire series. Okay, not everyone's. Back in the day when I was reading about vampires, it was Anne Rice for me. I partook, and oh, did I enjoy. I wasn't a big fan of Lestat. He was a bit too wild for me. Armand was my favorite. Good stuff, and good writing. I still peruse sections of Queen of the Damned, The Body Thief, and The Vampire Armand, just for the pleasure of the writing.

So what is about to go wrong for me over at Nathan's place? Well, some people were discussing everybody's fave LDS vampire tale, and I waded in with a few opinions. I'll be honest; I could not get past the first page of the first book. A description of clothing and weather? All on one page? Be still my heart. I didn't follow the story much until the movie came out, and then I did a little research about the entire series. I found a detailed plot summary. My reaction ran along the lines of "Wait, what?"

I remember Anthony Bourdain describing his first taste of iguana tamales. He said they made him want to "stick my head in a bucket of lye and jump off a cliff." I was also reminded of the reason my mother won't let my father tell dirty jokes in her presence: "I don't want to have that kind of thing in my head."

Yeah, like that.

I know what you're thinking: "That's a good story, Grandma!" And I admit it, and it is my point: I am too damn old for that vampire series. Not because I'm not interested in the age group; the protagonist of my new novel is thirteen. I am too old as a reader.

Through high school, I read science fiction. Through college, I read plenty of romance novels (as I remember, you order them by the pound). But the day after I graduated from college I went to the excellent Chaucer's Books in Santa Barbara and bought Thomas Wolfe's Look Homeward, Angel. From that day to this, in the fiction category, I have read almost nothing but literary fiction.

That's more than twenty years.

If Armand returns, I'll be there. Otherwise, I'm sorry, but there is no going home again.

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