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Monday, August 30, 2010

VBT My Immortal - Wendi Zwaduk

No hon, I'm a Vampire...”

Interesting title, eh? Well...there's a story behind it. Keep reading. You'll see.

When I write a story, I'm a cross between a pantser and a plotter. I know, I can't really be both at the same time. Funny, I have a way of finding paths around the expected courses and being original.
But about the pantser/plotter... Yes, I have a general—and I use that term loosely—idea of what the story will be. I know that there will be hugging, kissing, and that sort of violence. I know there will be a hero and a heroine (in most cases). And I know there will be some sort of issue they must work through in order to have that happily ever after they want.
Apart from that, anything is possible.

For My Immortal, I had this grand idea that Storm would be a private investigator—a human, PI. But as I started working out what his backstory would be, he propped his chin on my shoulder. I don’t mind having him peeking as I write. It’s kind of nice. I can ask him all sorts of questions and aggrivate him as much as he is me. (Did I mention he’s got a bony chin? He does.)
It was funny. As I wrote, he nodded and agreed with almost all the things I put onto the screen. He loved the idea of a rendezvous with Stevie. Actually he couldn’t stop talking about her. For a while I though I’d get to know her character better than his, even though he was right there.
I wasn’t far off.
I started writing the love scene and he tells me he can smell her arousal. Um...ok...that’s feasible.
“No, it smells like powder and spice.”
I furrowed my brow. Powder? Spice? Um, Storm, hon, what are you talking about? (At this point, the first shoe dropped and a strange feeling slipped down my spine.)
“My kind can smell their mate.”
The furrow deepened. Storm, sweetie, it is possible to smell that sort of thing, but what are you talking about... your kind? You’re a human.
That’s when the other shoe hit the floor.
“No, hon, I’m a vampire.”
Doesn’t that change things.
I drew a long breath and let it out. Despite my initial freak out that he’d pulled a fast one on me three quarters of the way through the manuscript, I actually felt a bit relieved. He was honest with me and not trying to fit a mold. Also, it opened up a few possibilities. I’ve always wanted to write a love scene involving the paranormal. Storm made it possible. I wanted to look at things from an opposite point of view—sleeping all day, stay up all night, see you at sunset, and oh yeah, I can’t eat anything.
I liked the new rules.
“Do you have any other things I need to know about?”
Would you believe the smart aleck said, “Besides the third eye sprouting out of my forehead? No, ok, there isn’t one, but...” He did. But I love him so it was all right. As he chattered away, he gave me the rest of his details and helped me shape his story into something stronger and more exciting to read.
So when an author tells me their characters just won’t behave, I tell them to take five minutes and just listen to what the characters have to say. It might make that stuck-in-the-mud story a whole lot better.
It did for me.

Blurb: What’s a girl to do when she finds out the man of her dreams is a 340 year old vampire?

Run like hell or offer her heart.

Being a vampire hasn’t been easy for Storm Richardson. He’s not programmed to kill or harm, unless he needs to feed. When he meets Stephanie “Stevie” Persing, he knows he’s found his mate. But if he crosses the line between work and play, he risks losing the only person who matters—her.

Stevie’s been in love with Storm since the moment she laid eyes on him. He’s brooding, intense, and her one weakness. But is her heart too steep a price to pay for his love, especially when she discovers his deepest secrets?

“What did he do to you?”
As she squared her shoulders, she took a deep breath. “He screwed Gypsy and then claimed he thought she was me. I don’t know how, since she’s five-nine and honey blonde. He said something about being shit faced and needing my comforts. I didn’t buy it then and still don’t even if it was pitch black when I caught them in my bed.”
Storm fought the twin waves of relief and anger. He didn’t like Ace from the beginning and the fact that the jerk screwed her good-for-nothing sister only confirmed his feelings.  His heart still ached for Stevie even if she was better off. Life tended to dump on her in garbage truck proportions.
 “Why did you think scum like that would make you happy? His name is Ace, for God’s sake.”
A lock of glossy, dark hair swept across her forehead when she looked away. “Actually his name is Herbert Axel Blake.”
He tried to contain it, but the laughter bubbled up on its own accord. She eyed him curiously than burst into giggles, too.
“Yeah, that’s his real name, Storm. I guess he thought Ace sounded cooler.”
Lust surged in his veins. He brushed her tresses from her eyes and trailed his fingers down her cheek. “It doesn’t sound cool at all.”
Her lips parted with a gasp. “I doubt I could’ve married a Herbert. It sounds too old-fashioned.” There was a definite catch in her voice.
He choked on his good humour. Too old school? What would she say when she found out he was 340 years old and grew up in Colonial Massachusetts? That was ancient history, even by his terms.
Deciding to try his luck, he pressed a question. “How about a Jacob?”
She crinkled her slightly upturned nose. “Who is Jacob?”
Flashing his best smile, he caressed her cheek with his thumb. “Me.”


Wendi Zwaduk said...

Yay! That's me. I'm so glad to have a release today and can't wait to talk all about My Immortal!


Anonymous said...

WTG Wendi! I love the excerpt. I've been looking for a good vampire novel and I think I've found it.

katsrus said...

Happy Release day Wendi.
Sue B

flchen1 said...

Congrats, Wendi--thanks for the terrific excerpt!

f dot chen at comcast dot net

Anonymous said...

Lovely to have you back with us, Wendi.

Wendi Zwaduk said...

Thanks ladies! I loved being here!