Club Fang
So much this. Sure, it can make for good, fun, high-stakes paranormal drama, but honestly? If you’re going to ‘curse’ someone with immortality as a punishment, at least do something like include a Dorian Gray clause or make them age to the point of crippling and their bones turning to dust or something. Even being a ‘normal’ being, frozen in time and immortal could be punishment, but superpowers? That’s really not a punishment at all — and gives them ample time to plot and enact revenge on you, your cook, your gardener, your descendants, your country, your race, etc…

So much this.
Sure, it can make for good, fun, high-stakes paranormal drama, but honestly? If you’re going to ‘curse’ someone with immortality as a punishment, at least do something like include a Dorian Gray clause or make them age to the point of crippling and their bones turning to dust or something. Even being a ‘normal’ being, frozen in time and immortal could be punishment, but superpowers? That’s really not a punishment at all — and gives them ample time to plot and enact revenge on you, your cook, your gardener, your descendants, your country, your race, etc…

And I was hooked…

Rosi Golan - Can’t Go Back

I had some credit with Amazon’s mp3 store, so I nabbed a few tracks featured on The Vampire Diaries that I’ve wanted for a while and haven’t found on my usual sites. (And yes, generally I pay for music whenever possible — especially from non-major-label/lesser-known artists.)

I realize it’s pretty cliché that music from this show inspires the Club Fang writings, but if there’s one thing CW shows have always been great with (besides overpopulating tiny towns with unbelievably beautiful specimens of humanity), it’s finding good music for their series. TVD is no exception. One of the reasons I got emotionally attached to the show early on was the use of Sara Bareilles’ “Gravity” and Tyrone Wells’ “This is Beautiful” during important scenes. I may no longer be a teenager, but these ‘teens’ understand not only my musical taste but how essential it is to have a soundtrack to connect life to.

Songs from the series are far from my only writing inspiration, even for this series, but for the connective emotional tissue that is teens and the supernatural you really can’t go wrong with music from The Vampire Diaries.

Plus, mental images of Ian Somerhalder are always nice…

What music inspires y’all when writing? Are there certain genres/artists/tracks that work better for specific projects?

‘Well I know that, did I move and speak in your London, none there are who would not know me for a stranger. That is not enough for me. Here I am noble; I am boyar; the common people know me, and I am master. But a stranger in a strange land, he is no one; men know him not — and to know not is to care not for. I am content if I am like the rest, so that no man stops if he see me, or pause in his speaking if he hears my words, to say, “Ha, ha! a stranger!” I have been so long master that I would be master still — or at least that none other should be master of me.’

Dracula, Bram Stoker (via thoreauismyhomeboy)

Well, hello quote that all filmmakers seem to eternally ignore. He wants to blend in with society. Just because he sees himself as above other beings doesn’t mean he’s aiming for dominion via flamboyancy.  It’s far easier to kill a bunch of people and create more of your own kind if you start out slowly, subtly, and in a manner that doesn’t draw attention to yourself. Which is one of the major reasons he goes after the hunters and Mina — they threaten his carefully constructed plan to settle into a new place unobserved. 

I’m watching Grosse Pointe Blank for the first time in… longer than it should have been since the last time, considering how much I love this movie. It occurred to me: what if Martin and Grocer were vampires?
Yes, it’s a silly idea. I’m aware of that. However, it’s not a stretch really, given the current landscape of vamp characters. Martin would be that broody, unsatisfied vamp who really doesn’t care for his existence, or gets along with other vampires, but tolerates his station because it’s all he knows — until he meets the woman meant for him and decides there is something good worth living for, and then kills a bunch of people to get it. Grocer on the other hand would be the quintessential sociopathic killer vampire, because he’s basically that way anyway.
Then what I really want to see is Joan Cusack’s character as a vampire, because she would be the snarky sidekick gal pal and wreck shit and it would be awesome. We can just forget about the Piv for this one… otherwise he’d be like David Arquette in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Oh! And Alan Arkin as a vampire psychiatrist? How hilarious would he be?!? And the NSA spooks — they could be human vamp hunters, or vamp misanthropes; either way their hapless antics would be hilarious.
Also, that fight in the mini-mart followed by the huge explosion to the GNR version of “Live and Let Die”? Perfect fight scene at night with two badass vamps in flowing coats.
There, Hollywood, I just gave you another ridiculous idea for a movie based off another movie since that’s all you see as marketable these days: Grosse Pointe Blank — with Vampires!
— Lily

PS — all kidding aside, a movie where the government and/or professional killing agencies hire vampires as assassins could be pretty rad.

I’m watching Grosse Pointe Blank for the first time in… longer than it should have been since the last time, considering how much I love this movie. It occurred to me: what if Martin and Grocer were vampires?

Yes, it’s a silly idea. I’m aware of that. However, it’s not a stretch really, given the current landscape of vamp characters. Martin would be that broody, unsatisfied vamp who really doesn’t care for his existence, or gets along with other vampires, but tolerates his station because it’s all he knows — until he meets the woman meant for him and decides there is something good worth living for, and then kills a bunch of people to get it. Grocer on the other hand would be the quintessential sociopathic killer vampire, because he’s basically that way anyway.

Then what I really want to see is Joan Cusack’s character as a vampire, because she would be the snarky sidekick gal pal and wreck shit and it would be awesome. 
We can just forget about the Piv for this one… otherwise he’d be like David Arquette in Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Oh! And Alan Arkin as a vampire psychiatrist? How hilarious would he be?!? And the NSA spooks — they could be human vamp hunters, or vamp misanthropes; either way their hapless antics would be hilarious.

Also, that fight in the mini-mart followed by the huge explosion to the GNR version of “Live and Let Die”? Perfect fight scene at night with two badass vamps in flowing coats.

There, Hollywood, I just gave you another ridiculous idea for a movie based off another movie since that’s all you see as marketable these days: Grosse Pointe Blank — with Vampires!

— Lily

PS — all kidding aside, a movie where the government and/or professional killing agencies hire vampires as assassins could be pretty rad.

Real Vampires Doing Actual Vampiring…

(Title courtesy of the brilliant Cleo over in LJ land)

Out of my own personal obsession, as well as for general novel research purposes, I added a tag tracker on Tumblr for ‘Dracula.’ It’s been an interesting tumble through posts, but the general feeling I get is that even here vampiring fans fall into two distinct categories:

The OMG vampires is so sexy with their eternal youth and hotness and the biting, but usually not really biting, and… unf, ungh, hoooootttt! Camp

The vampires are evil bloodsucking beings (and sometimes total BAMFs), so stop making them into twats! Camp

Personally, I fall in the middle of those polarizing opinions ‘cause who am I to argue with the concept of staying young and sexy forever — oh, except that whole immortality ain’t all it’s cracked up to be aspect. However, I’m also of the mindset that vampires drink blood to survive, and possess at their core a desire for the blood of the ultimate prey: people. 

This isn’t to say you can’t have vampires trying to be good un-dead beings; it’s that if you’re going to take away their most fundamental reason for existence (predators of humans) you either better have a damn good reason for it, or stop calling them vampires. 

Also, stop making them sparkly pussies. That’d be great, too.

TL; DR — I don’t buy in to the whole ‘I’m a vampire but I never hurt people unless they beg me for it, or they’re really evil’ shtick. That’s like saying ‘I’m a rapist, but I don’t go around trying to rape people unless they’re horrible people or they want me to rape them.’ (In which case it’s no longer rape, genius.)

My point in all this rambling is to say that in our little ‘verse, vampires don’t go around ripping people’s throats out, usually… and we have reasons for it. Yet sometimes they do. Pretty much every vampire in our world has, at one time, gone on a total predatory bender and slaughtered a bunch of people. They’re not out for world domination like the baddest of the bad vamps (see: Dracula moment coming below); they’re predators who act on their natural instinct and it’s a combination of outside influences and internal conflict which finally reign them in — and yet it doesn’t mean that urge to rip some throats out doesn’t rear itself now and again.

So back to the Dracula tag: one of my biggest gripes with those who perpetuate the whole Vampires As Tortured Sexy Beasts mentality is they like to cite how sexy Dracula was, and how subtextually (or blatantly, depending on whose opinion you’re reading) Mina and/or Lucy were totally gagging for him.

To show I’m just as good as all those subtext-loving fools (some of them in ridiculously high positions of academia) at using direct citations to back up my opinions, here’s a couple quotes, followed by my notes, directly from the book I’ve been annotating as I re-read it:

He was very pale, and his eyes seemed bulging out as, half in terror and half in amazement, he gazed at a tall, thin man, with a beaky nose and black moustache and pointed beard, who was also observing the pretty girl. He was looking at her so hard that he did not see either of us, and so I had a good view of him. His face was not a good face. It was hard, and cruel, and sensual, and big white teeth, that looked all the whiter because his lips were so red, were pointed like an animal’s.”

Note: Not the kind of guy you’d GO ON A DATE WITH then, huh, Mina?

Suddenly the horror burst upon me that it was thus that Jonathan had seen those awful women growing into reality through the whirling mist in the moonlight, and in my dream I must have fainted, for all became black darkness. The last conscious effort which imagination made was to show me a livid white face bending over me out of the mist.”

Note: THIS IS NOT SEXY (also, not a dream…)

Kneeling on the near edge of the bed facing outwards was the white-clad figure of his wife. By her side stood a tall, thin man, clad in black.

Note: She’s in white. He’s in black. How much more obvious can we get with the good vs. evil metaphor and yet people still think Drac’s an OK guy? SERIOUSLY?!

His right hand gripped her by the back of the neck, forcing her face down on his bosom. Her white night-dress was smeared with blood, and a thin stream trickled down the man’s bare chest which was shown by his torn-open dress. The attitude of the two had a terrible resemblance to a child forcing a kitten’s nose into a saucer of milk to compel it to drink.

Note: A far cry from her begging for it…

I was bewildered, and strangely enough, I did not want to hinder him. I suppose it is a part of the horrible curse that such is, when his touch is on his victim. And oh, my God, my God, pity me! He placed his reeking lips upon my throat!

Note: You mean she didn’t want to make out with him? WHHHAAAAA?

And just so you don’t think I hold Stoker’s novel as a holy tome for Dracula (which I do, but also know its many, many flaws):

He cannot go where he lists, he who is not of nature has yet to obey some of nature’s laws, why we know not. He may not enter anywhere at the first, unless there be some one of the household who bid him to come, though afterwards he can come as he please. His power ceases, as does that of all evil things, at the coming of the day.

Note: Stoker and the gypsies just made it up, so it’s the rule! It’s the Hellmouth! The TARDIS is part of events now so you can’t use it to change things!

— Lily