Monday, August 22, 2011
Where my ideas come from: Blood Crimes
Back in 1997 I was still trying to work with the agent who had given me the Silence of the Lambs ripoff plot that I transformed into Bad Thoughts, and now he gave me this really cheesy vampire biker script that he wrote that he wanted me to novelize. There was no way I could've written a decent book off the script he gave me, but it got me thinking about putting vampires in a noir world--although not supernatural vampires, but more along the lines of the ones from I am Legend where a virus creates vampire-like changes in a person. The more I thought about this, the more excited I got by it, and I worked out an extremely harboiled/noir script based on this idea. When I showed this new script to my agent, he was not happy and that ended up being the final split between us.
Fast forward to 2006. I'd just finished Pariah, and my Blood Crimes script (then titled Vampire Scripts) had been on my mind for the last 9 years where I'd been wanting to turn it into a series of novels, and so I wrote my 8th book. Unfortunately, my agent at the time had her hands full trying to sell Pariah and Caretaker, so she didn't want to take this on. When I later switched agents, he fell in love with it, as did a lot of younger editors we sent it to, but the problem was the vampire genre had been hijacked into teen/women romance genre with the success of Twilight and True Blood, so it became impossible to sell a hardcore crime/horror vampire novel. The book also generated a lot of excitement with the film people I showed it to, but we ran into that same problem where until the Twilight and True Blood dominance wears off, there's no way of doing anything with it in Hollywood.
Anyway, I decided to put this out myself as an ebook, and reader reaction has been great. I know the book is going to upset any Twilight fans who stumble on it, but I'm getting emails from readers who tell me they hate vampire books but love this book. I'm also seeing readers really digging seeing vampires taken back to real horror, and written in a tough-minded violent adult style. Blood Crimes is the first of what I'm hoping to be a 5-book series.