Sunday, March 16, 2014

THE DEPTHS OF EVIL: A backgrounder on the influences that led to the writing of the novel

Like most novels, THE DEPTHS OF EVIL is the result of many influences.

The idea came as I walked along a beach in Thailand at night. I wondered what it would be like if people began to come out of the water ... and not just people, but vampires. And not just vampires, but vampire children. Seemingly innocent and helpless ... until they attacked en masse and dragged me into the dark depths of the tide, never to be heard from again.

Since JAWS, I have been abnormally afraid of water, especially ocean water. Who knows what horrors lurk beneath the surface, what beasts, what leviathans, what monsters? 

Why not, I thought, write a novel about vampire children who live underwater, who emerge late in the night to prey on unsuspecting beach-goers?

The vampire children who inhabit THE DEPTHS OF EVIL are not sweet, pretty vampires like the ones gracing the pages of TWILIGHT. Neither do have the grace and charm of Lestat. No. They are nasty, their sweetness and innocence lost to the demands that their insatiable hunger places upon them. They are vicious little killers.

The second influence that led to the writing of this novel was an abandoned mining town where I lived with my family as a child called Edward's Lake, just outside West Branch, Michigan.

Incredibly, the place now has its own website.

Here's a photo of the lake itself:

We lived in the house at the turn in the road that goes down to the mining facility. It was abandoned in the 1970s when we lived there: wild, rough, not the clean-cut looking place in this photo.

As I kicked around the plot for THE DEPTHS OF EVIL, I decided to have a team of journalists investigate such an abandoned town, and I made up a backstory -- that many people had gone down into the abandoned town and never returned; that many children in the area had gone missing over the years with no one knowing quite why. My team of journalists planned to do a feature story.

From there, it was only a small step to place my nasty vampire children in that lake ...

What happens when the team of journalists visit the lake on a hot July day? Well, you'll just have to find out for yourself ... believe me, it isn't pretty.

THE DEPTHS OF EVIL, published by Double Dragon Publishing in Canada, is available in ebook format, with a print version on the way.

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