Phil Athans is that rare exception to the rule…he can, he does, and he also teaches. I’ve had the pleasure of taking a couple of Phil’s classes at the Writer’s Digest University, and I’ve also read his new book, “Completely Broken”. If you can read this work without a strong emotional response, you should probably be on a watch list somewhere, or at the very least, a perfect bunk mate for Hannibal Lecter.
Phil is that good.
In a recent blog, Phil expressed his strong dislike for vampire stories, because they’re generally the same old things rehashed over and over again, and he is right. Stoker set the bar high with “Dracula”, and it’s really difficult to tell as powerful a story without revisiting Stoker’s work.
Oh, and no. “Sparkling” has no place here, never has, and never will. Nope.
I decided to take Phil’s challenge to heart, where he asks authors to try and put a unique twist on the classic vampire tale, and wrote the story “Test Case”, where I’ve tried to put an entirely different character into an untenable situation and then express his take on it.
Just this morning, I received an email from Steph Ellis at the Horror Tree with a contract, stating that she and Stuart Conover, publisher, both loved the story, and would like to use it in their Trembling With Fear section. Needless to say, it was signed and returned with a note of thanks and a smile.
I’ll be sure to post here when it’s released, and then everyone can judge for themselves how I did with my new angle on the timeless vampire tale. Until then…