Stephen King explains how to make vampires ‘scary again’

The horror master offers tips on how to re-inject some bite into a genre ‘hijacked by a lot of soft-focus romance’

Here’s what vampires shouldn’t be: pallid detectives who drink Bloody Marys and work only at night; lovelorn southern gentlemen; anorexic teenage girls; boy-toys with big dewy eyes,” writes Stephen King in the introduction to his move into original comic book writing, American Vampire. “What should they be? Killers, honey. Stone killers who never get enough of that tasty Type-A. Bad boys and girls. Hunters. In other words, Midnight America. Red, white and blue, accent on the red. Those vamps got hijacked by a lot of soft-focus romance.”

King has clearly got a bit of a thing against the waves of romantically inclined vampires that have been proving so popular in recent years – in the past, he’s hit out particularly at Stephenie Meyer’s Twitlight books and the yearning teen romance that fills them. “Stephenie Meyer can’t write worth a darn. She’s not very good,” he said last year.

If you’ve been following by blog, you know that I wholeheartdely agree. I mean people have judged me on being a hypocrite because I like Harry Potter (but not Twitlight) but to be honest, JKR actually took the time to learn to write and she delivered a pretty damn good story. I also enjoyed reading the Vampire Diaries, despite them starting extremely boring and with an annoying protagonist, the characters developed and the plot was pretty good. Still I would recommend the Show instead 😛

American Vampire which is out next month is a fresh take on the vampire myth, producing a particularly American version which isn’t bothered by sunlight, sports rattlesnake fangs, and kicks the arse out of its tired European creators. “It’s all about giving back the teeth that the current ‘sweetie-vamp’ craze has, by and large, stolen from the bloodsuckers. It’s about making them scary again,” writes King. “Skinner Sweet [his American vamp] really sucks, and man, that’s a good thing.”

Coming from a man whose Vampire book Salem’s Lot gave me nightmares at 17 (SEVENTEEN!) this is a very good thing! I can’t wait to order my American Vampire copy :3

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