People often ask me when they find out that I write paranormal fiction, why I write it. The short answer I give them is that I enjoy it and I read it and those are the stories that come to me. It seems simple. But the long answer is something far more involved.
Right from when I was little I was attracted to the mystical and mythical, the fantastical and purely far out. My mother used to watch episodes of the old Star Trek and Dr Who and The Twilight Zone while breast feeding me and my brother and I think somehow it seeped into my psyche. As I grew up, the programs we loved to watch together as a family were sci-fi and fantasy style programs and the movies we most loved were always the same. To this day, I still love Dr Who and Star Trek and Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Back to the Future, Tron and Gremlins – stories of the fantastical mixed with the larger epic themes I so loved in mythology and with strong story arcs for those that were series.
And the books I loved to read tended to be the same, with stories of mythology and retellings of ancient legends, of Gods and Goddesses and magic and faeries mixed in. I loved stories set on other planets, either in outer space about little green men or in some far distant time where pieces of our history were blended with pieces of mythology from all across the globe. Grimm faerytales were devoured alongside Aesops fables and stories of the Tuatha De Dannan. I loved ghost stories and stories of mediums and people who had been reincarnated and tales of the eternal fight between Heaven and Hell. I went through a gothic horror phase, reading the classics – Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, The Picture of Dorian Grey and Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde – as well as more modern versions by masters of paranormal suspense like Stephen King, Peter Straub and Anne Rice.
I loved Anne Rice’s Interview with a Vampire series, but it was her other books, The Mummy and her Taltos series that really influenced my reading choices as I moved from my teenage years into adulthood. I ‘found’ Raymond E. Feist and fell in love and from there a whole new world opened up before me. He mixed fantasy and mythology with an almost Stargate like travelling through worlds. He had magic and Elves and Dwarves and dragons and invaders from another world living alongside the average regular overshadowed by an evil so great it scared the Gods right through the entirety of his series. Just brilliant.
But I also longed for books with a fantasy/paranormal bent that had more romance in them. For years there was a dearth of such books and then holy guacamole, after the brilliant Buffy the Vampire Slayer hit our TV screens with her hot, forbidden romance with Angel, there was a surge in the kinds of books I longed to read to complete my literary sci-fi/fantasy/paranormal/romance diet. And this led to a resurgence of not only paranormal movies and TV shows with a romance bent, but more and more wonderful shows with a mix of scifi, fantasy and paranormal, hit our screens and sent me into viewing nirvana.
Vampire Diaries, The Originals, Teen Wolf, True Blood, Sanctuary, Warehouse 13, Haven, Lost Girl, Once Upon a Time, Torchwood, Dr Who, Stargate, Firefly, LOTR, Game of Thrones…the list goes on and on. Too much fabulous TV and not enough time to watch it, especially if I’m going to get through all the series I love to read.
For a nerdy girl like me, it is a wonderful time to be a reader and a viewer and I wouldn’t have it any other way. So, why do I write paranormal and fantasy? For my answer, see the above! J