Sunday, August 31, 2014
Hello everyone, sorry for the slow updates recently. I had planned on another post today, but life has a way of kind of being really getting in the way sometimes. Especially when you're going back to college. I started attending my first university this week. Prior to that the past few weeks have been chaotic with my wife getting a new job.
She got her Bachelors Degree last spring at the same university where I'm going now. She studied to become a high school math teacher. This summer had been a rough one for us for several other reasons as well, including her taking special summer courses for her credential to be come a teacher. I had to drive her around a number of places including a couple of schools where she was interning. A lot of that driving meant time away from the keyboard both for this blog and the novel itself. There were a lot of things to be done around the house that only I was available to do (cleaning, laundry, errands, etc.)
I also had to go through some skin cancer surgery, which didn't always leave me in the best of shape to be working on things.
These last two weeks, I was spending a lot of time on the novel itself thanks to my wife's new job. She had to go through the interview process, be offered the job, accept it, and went through a couple of weeks of training at the new school so she could settle in. Now the location of her job was in another town about 1/2 an hour away from where we currently live, which is actually quite a nice drive.
But even better, the town where she's working has the most beautiful library, where I parked myself for hours working on the book. I'm happy to announce that the 1st draft is almost finished. I'm within pages of finishing it off. Once that's done, I'll be doing a second draft to iron out certain issues such as clarity of thought, spelling, making sure the story flows, and finally getting to work on the actual cover.
After the 2nd draft is completed it will be going to my proofreader/editor. Then I will do the 3rd draft at which point it will be unleashed on some willing Beta-Readers. Once I hear back from them, a final draft will be completed and the book will be released.
How long will all that take? I don't have a clear idea yet, but the release will happen between late October and early December. That much I can tell you. It will all depend on how long it takes for others to get back to me (editing, beta-reading, etc.) Once the 1st draft is completed the second one will come fairly quickly.
So hang in there, the actual novel is coming. I will be posting more blog entries by the various characters you'll be meeting in the book very soon. Some will be funny, others interesting, a few tearful, but I'll try not to leave you bored.
A new post will be here in a week. From what the characters are telling me, we'll be hearing either from Nathaniel, Lisa, or Marisa. Or someone completely new. Some characters can get kind of pushy.
For now I bid you a pleasant week. Come freely, visit frequently, but always leave a bit of the happiness you bring to this blog. (paraphrased from Bram Stoker's Dracula). This is my copy. As you can see, I've read it a 'few' times, give or take...
Friday, March 21, 2014
My sincerest apologies for not updating the untold chronicles of Nathaniel and company. I've been very busy these last few weeks working on the 3rd and 4th drafts of my second book "The Ship" which is coming out in May during the Memorial Day Weekend. Naturally, a lot has to be done between now and then to get that book in proper shape. So it's taking up a lot of my time.
That said, I want to reassure you Nathaniel, Marisa and many others will be posting here again soon. In the meantime I thought I'd share a little of my inspirations and thoughts on Nathaniel's personality.
I've been a long time fan of Doctor Who since the 1960's when I saw my first Dalek. Naturally, I became fascinated with the series and the many incarnations of the Doctor and his companions. But what really struck me sometimes was the concept of someone having such a long life. While the Doctor is not immortal, he has been around for centuries and he's always kept himself busy. Each incarnation makes reference to some famous person they'd met years ago such as Houdini, Einstein, HG Wells, and many others.
In a lot of vampire fiction I've seen over the years, it seems many of the undead spent time staked or sleeping while the centuries passed them by and they awakened into a whole new period so different from the one they remembered. For them there is the storyline of adapting and becoming familiar with how the world has changed, in addition to whatever mischief they were about to unleash on others.
I didn't want that for Nathaniel. I wanted him to be a man who has witnessed and been part of the changing times. Like the Doctor, he loves seeing how humankind is moving forward, making new discoveries and even getting to be a part of it.
However, there is still an old-world charm about him as well. He still carries the lessons and values his parents instilled in him when he was growing up. He'll use modern idioms and phrases, but there's still a lot of mannerisms that make one think he doesn't quite fully belong to this era. I took some inspiration from Dark Shadows vampire Barnabas Collins, in this respect. Barnabas was originally intended to be a villain who would be destroyed when the show ended in a few months time. But his brooding nature, and tragic past, endeared him to viewers so much the show went on to last for several more years, with him becoming a dark guardian angel to his descendants and the town they lived in.
Barnabas Collins was also one of the first good-guy vampires ever seen either in books or on television and has been a huge inspiration to those creating heroic undead. However, he was also one of those vampires who was locked away and never fully fit in with the modern times.
I've been careful to make Nathaniel a mixed bag of old and new world. If you were to meet him you'd find him funny, amusing, a bit dry in his sense of humor, but quite enjoyable to be around. But he does have his moody side. He's outlived a lot of people he loved and watched over. But he doesn't get bogged down in the past, because there's always so many new things happening and new people to meet. In this respect, he's a lot like the Doctor. He remembers and respects the past, but knows he can only move forward with the times.
He's also used his long life to keep busy. Nathaniel is a man of many talents, because he's had the time to study and develop numerous skills. He paints, has done stage work, plays several instruments, has worked various jobs and has gone to a number of colleges and holds several degrees including a doctorate and three masters. I won't go into detail about what he's studied because that will come to light in the novel. He chose his studies carefully and with a purpose.
I really gave a lot of thought about his life when I came up with him. What kinds of things would you do if you had an extended life-span that lasted centuries and you were fairly young all the time. How many hobbies and skills could you learn? What kind of talents would YOU want to develop. Give it some thought and share some of them with us in the comments below.
Finally, I wanted to share a final image with you. If I ever got the chance to see The Vampyre Blogs get turned into a movie for the theater or television, the person I'd most like to see as Nathaniel is Derek Hough. His normal expression is kind of intense thanks to the arch of his eyebrows. But he has such an animated personality, I could so see him going from intense to funny to moody all quite convincingly. So if you've been wondering what Nathaniel might look like Derek's my choice. Well that's all for now. I hope to have Marisa or another new character post an entry in about a week or so. So stay tuned, there are a lot more stories to be told. Until then, happy reading everyone and thanks for sticking with me.