Friday, July 27, 2012

Our Fascination with Vampires - Jess Haines

Hello there!  Jess Haines here.  I’m the author of the urban fantasy H&W Investigations series (HUNTED BY THE OTHERS, TAKEN BY THE OTHERS, DECEIVED BY THE OTHERS, and the recently released STALKING THE OTHERS). 

As cheesy and ridiculous as most media involving vampires can be, I love them dearly.  Movies, TV shows, games, books—even music videos—there’s a little something for everyone. 

One of the first books I read about vampires was by R.L. Stine (I believe it was GOODNIGHT KISS). When I was younger, I loved reading his Fear Street novels, and devoured as many of them as I could get my hands on.  After reading this one, he sparked my interest in reading more about vampires.  Soon, I was reading Bram Stoker, Anne Rice, and watching movies like Interview With the Vampire and Fright Night. 

What was it about them that made them so fascinating?  As much as I’ve always loved fantastical things, vampires drew my interest like nothing else. Was it their power? Their charm?  A fascination with the dead?  Maybe all of those things and none of them. There’s something compelling about a creature that has no life force of its own, and must subsist on the blood and flesh of others in order to survive.  We see animals and insects like this in nature, such as ticks, bats, leeches, and lampreys. There is even a type of bird that lives on the Galapagos Islands called a “vampire finch” that supplements its diet of insects with the blood of bigger seabirds.

It’s also been said that the penetration of the vampire’s fangs is supposed to have some bearing on oral fascination. And why not? There is something to be said for the variations of aggression that can be alluded to when referring to the mouth, lips, teeth, tongue, and biting; whether to fight or in sexual play, it’s not hard to see how reading or watching movies about that might remind some primitive part of us about the darker side of nature.  The psychological implications are many and varied, but they are what you make of them.

Depending on the lore the book, movie, etc, used for their vampires, they can be smart, sexy, rich, suave, lonely, selfish, sensual, frightening, dangerous, beastly—or some combination thereof.  They might present a false front, an image of being cool, collected, and enticing their victims with promises of pleasure or power.  Others hid in shadows and pounced when their prey least suspected, too weak or monstrous or ugly to do otherwise.  Either way, they have always drawn my interest and left me wanting more.

What do you think?  Who are some of your favorite vampires in movies, books, and video games? If you’re a fan, what draws you to them?

Want to talk to me about your favorite vampires? Visit me on the web:

Thanks again for having me, Lee!


Karen H in NC said...

I don't read a lot of vampire themed books but the 2 that I did read and enjoyed were The Vampire Who Loved Me and After Midnight, both by Teresa Medeiros. In film, I liked Dracula starring Frank Langella as the Count. He hasn't aged all that well, but back then, he was totally hot! And I loved Moonlight, the short lived TV series starring Alex O'Loughlin as Mick St. John, a vampire PI.

Eli Yanti said...

my fave vampire is bones (jeaniene frost's book), he is totaly great vampire, strong, smart, handsome, rich, protective, posessif, and really care with cat :)

Barbara E. said...

I love vampire stories, from the light hearted to the dark and deadly ones. Lynsay Sands and Kerrelyn Sparks write great examples of the former that I really enjoy and Jeaniene Frost and Jaye Wells are my favorites for the latter.

Pat Cochran said...

The only concert I remember attending that
was anywhere near rock was Fleetwood Mac
and Men At Work. Before that we saw Harry
Belafonte, then the Stan Kenton Orchestra.
Does that date us or what?

Pat C.

Pat Cochran said...

OOPS! Right comment, wrong blog! So sorry!!

Back to your topic:

Only have begun to read vampire tales of
late, Caridad Pineiro, Terri Garey, among
others. Favorite TV vampires: Angel and
Spike on the Buffy shows.

Pat C.

Mary said...

I love vampires, they are probably my favorite paranormal aspect of the books. I read paranormal romance because I love vampires and want to read them in ways that only an author with a wild mind can think up. I've read different vampire stories and after reading the book was like, Now I never would have thought of that.