Melanie Nowak interview and giveaway
Melanie: A few things came together to bring ALMOST HUMAN’s venomous vampires to life (or undeath, if you will). I’ve always been interested in bats. Vampire bats have a anticoagulant in their saliva called “draculin” (named after Count Dracula!) that keeps blood from clotting. I had the idea that such a thing would be useful for vampires as well. It would also be useful if they had something to keep the victim calm, like a drug.
2. Why did you choose a college campus as your setting?
Melanie: Felicity, one of my main characters, has been somewhat shy and withdrawn, and views going away to college as an opportunity to mature into a confident young woman. For her character, a large part of the story is the beginning of her transition from teenager into true adulthood. Going away to college is her first experience away from home, being forced out of her shell. However, this is not a “Young Adult” series. Many people consider “Young Adult” literature as appropriate reading for the ages of 13 and up. This book is truly meant for ‘young adults’ of 17 and older, as there is some explicit sex in the series, beginning with book 2. The series also deals with some very mature concepts, and underneath the fun and romance there are some situations that really prompt the reader to think things over, examining their beliefs and opinions. College is the setting, but in a very realistic way. It is not meant to give the series too ‘young’ a spin.
Melanie: Honestly, all of the characters in this book are really me! It may sound strange because my characters are pretty diverse, but it’s true. Each of these characters has been taken from the seed of something within myself. I have been lucky enough in my life never to have been sexually abused or addicted to drugs - but everything that goes into making up the personalities for my characters, how they feel and react to things, has come from some little grain of dealing with something in my own life - magnified. At some point in my life I have totally identified with and "been" these people. Even if it didn't outwardly show - this is how I felt and wanted to react.
4. How many books will be in this series?
Melanie: I have been thinking about my characters and their story for years, and have already planned their future for many books to come. I have decided to write my ALMOST HUMAN series as a succession of trilogies. The series will continue chronologically with the same characters throughout, but each trilogy will have a new focus and storyline that follows through its three books.
Melanie: Well, that would have to be vampires, wouldn’t it? Although I have always been greatly intrigued by shapeshifters, dragons, unicorns, fae and mermaids as well.
Melanie: Of course my own vampire Cain is very dear to my heart, but if we are talking about before I began writing my own… Spike from Joss Whedon’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer television series, and both Lestat and Louis of Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles were the undead men that touched my heart ;-)
Melanie: Difficult to pick a favorite… I think I’ll go with Stephen King’s Pet Semetary. The movie was haunting, but (as always) the book was better. Scary/creepy as heck, but also such a human story too, that you can emotionally relate to. I guess I’m sort of hung up on the idea of loving someone so much, and feeling grief and loneliness so overwhelming, that you would try to bring someone back from the dead. Must also be why I connect well with vampires!
Melanie: Vanilla (with caramel or butterscotch!)
Melanie: I enjoy the King, but it is definitely Beatles for me!
Melanie: I’d need pages to answer! I have always had very long and vivid dreams. As a child, I got into the habit of spending a few minutes lying in bed each morning, going over every detail of my dreams that I could remember before they slipped away. Now, I always remember my dreams, and most of them are crazy so I couldn’t even pick one to tell you about, LOL. I will say that I also get some of my ideas for my books from dreams. When I go to bed, I lie awake and think of a part of the upcoming story that is unwritten, letting it play out in my head. I get the best ideas in that hazy state between being awake and asleep, and often the story carries over into my dreams. It’s not always in a way that I can use, but it does often unlock small aspects that lead me into a good direction for writing. I keep a notepad by the bed so I can scribble a few words to remind me of things.
Melanie: I didn’t make any formal resolutions this year. I always try to live by the Golden Rule: Do unto others, as you would have them do unto you, and the Wiccan Rede, which is: An it harm none, do what ye will. Basically, treat others as you would want to be treated, and live and let live. I think those are good resolutions for everyone to always keep in mind.
Melanie: I am currently writing Volume 2: Descendant of Darkness, for the second trilogy, and hope to release that book in 2011.
Melanie, Thank you so much for stopping by today and answering my questions. Also, Melanie Nowak has generously offered to giveaway a copy of Almost Human The First Trilogy to one of my readers. So now to the giveaway.
- This giveaway is for US addresses only.
- You must be 17 or older to enter
- You do NOT have to be a follower to enter, it's appreciated but not necessary
- You MUST fill out the form below to enter. I love comments but it will not enter you into the giveaway.
- Any questions, please feel free to contact me.
- Ends January 20, 2011