Monday, March 16, 2009

If it's got a brick in its mouth, it must be a vampire

Only last night I was saying to a friend that vampire novels still seem to be hot (I cannot believe they've made a movie of Let the Right One In*) and I ought to try to make some money by writing one ... and behold, this morning someone turns up with an absolutely cracking story just begging to be used.

I'm thinking a marriage of genres. Vampire romance has been done, and so has vampire crime, which is practically a tautology, but has anyone written a vampire western yet?

All ideas gratefully received.

*Here's my review of it for the SMH in March 2007:

Let the Right One In
By John Ajvide Lindqvist
Text, 528 pp, $32.95

This is an energetic, noisy, highly imaginative novel that blends the most extreme kind of vampire-story schlock-horror with a complicated and triangulated love story, a profoundly gory sequence of murders, and some rather good domestic realism about life in suburban 1980s Stockholm.

A number of contemporary scholars and critics including Melbourne’s Ken Gelder have written in detail about the complex cultural meanings attached to vampires, and Lindqvist, while he seems to be mostly having fun with the idea, has clearly also thought carefully about the issues of blood, death, infection and starvation that sit at the heart of the vampire myth, to say nothing of close connection between vampirism and eroticism.

Vampires aren’t the most logical creatures in the world nor the most emotionally straightforward, which makes for a certain amount of confusion in a book where so much happens, especially considering the violence of most of it. The book is clever and well written, but some of it is sufficiently gruesome to give even a strong-stomached reader pause.

BELATED UPDATE: James at City of Tongues saw this more than a week before I did, which just goes to show that I should update my blogroll more often.


Fyodor said...

I think that Lost in Austen show on the telly last night attempted to blend Georgian Romance with vampirism, with the first portrayal of Mr. Collins as a vampiric pedophile. Well, he looked like one, anyhoo.


TimT said...

'Blood in the Watership Down' - a fearsome tale about the hares that time forgot. Be aware of the hare scare!

Elsewhere007 said...

Hmmm...I'm more attracted to the idea of a gothic Venetian vampire, tho it could all be transposed.

If you're talking westerns, it should definitely be an outback western, given your huge knowledge of Aust lit and anxieties in the Aust psyche re: land/scape, etc. Or maybe a road-trip western (incidentally, my SA dentist friend does Bradley J Murdoch's teeth when she comes on junkets to the prison--ripe vampire teeth possibilities there. Apparently he bakes a good muffin). I think outback/romance/vampire/western thriller, myself.

Pavlov's Cat said...

Apparently he bakes a good muffin.

I bet.

Nice cross-genre suggestion there. Now I need to look closely at the various feedback you have received about the A plot and the B plot (? Storyline? whatevs -- I always think of Edgar, Edmund and Gloucester at this point, or is it Kent?) and cross-check that with outback/romance/vampire/western thriller, myself. Is there such a thing as a C, D and E plot? I also need to bear in mind that Baz Luhrmann has just done outback/romance/sort-of-western already.

I can haz vampire crocodiles?

Or maybe I could add some spec fic, grunge and road movie to the mix and turn it into a musical. How about The Strange Case of Nick Cave, Terence Stamp, Kickarse Captain Asteroid, Voss on Morphine and the Star-Crossed Vampire Crocs Live On Stage?

Anonymous said...

OK, Now I really want to know what the Voss on Morphine link was, and it doesn't work...

Pavlov's Cat said...

Yes, I thought I might've got that wrong. Try this.

Anonymous said...

George RR Martin wrote "Fever Dream" set on the Mississippi in 1857 and has been described as "Bram Stoker meets Mark Twain" - and is pretty damn good as I recall.

Vampires on the goldfields - think of all those undocumented people drifting from California to Australia following the gold and disappearing, mysteriously.

Hmmm, actually this isn't too bad. Get it together and you can sling in a trip to the US (for research) as a tax deduction.

Perry Middlemiss

M-H said...

Historical lesbian vampire detective romance (set in Old Sydney Town). Rogue Nation meets Claire McNab with incisive (har!) characters.

genevieve said...

Speaking of incisors (and objects inserted to avoid inappropriate biting) - I have a bendy one the orthodontist left alone when I was seventeen, and boy does it fucking hurt if I bite my lip accidentally.

As you were.


Francis Xavier Holden said...

I also need to bear in mind that Baz Luhrmann has just done outback/romance/sort-of-western already

Ah yes but that was bloodless. Although it sucked the life out of me.

Elsewhere007 said...

You can have ensemble plots following diff characters, like that Robert Altmann film and the Magnolia one. That's different to multi-genre, obv. Film a bit prescriptive.

Pavlov's Cat said...

How about a multi-genre ensemble? One storyline/character for each genre, all subtly reflecting and/or contrasting with each other and all pulled together over the last three chapters into one stonking great narrative loose end tying fest?

And it's a musical, don't forget. Imagine what an OTT production number the finale will be.

I do want to keep the Vampire Crocs in Love. They can end up together forever, transformed into a designer handbag carried by Terence Stamp (en femme, naturellement), eating ice-creams on the banks of the Todd with Bryan Brown, also en femme to play Laura from Voss (isn't she supposed to be tall and plain?), in some sort of Nevil Shute hommage cameo thingy.

Helen said...

I'm going to buy it for my vampire-lovin' girl, to counteract the sugary Twilight binge she's been on. And she loves teh gory, so no worries there.

Elsewhere007 said...

'And it's a musical'? It sounds vaguely exhausting. Let's talk about it at Teh Wedding.

Anonymous said...

Billy the Kid versus Dracula (1966)

Director:William Beaudine

T agline: The West's deadliest gunfighter! The world's most diabolical killer!

Plot: Dracula travels to the American West, intent on making a beautiful ranch owner his next victim. Her fiance, outlaw Billy the Kid, finds out about it and rushes to save her.

B Smith

Zoe said...

Spotted at twitter- "The Melbourne Police Museum reputedly has a 19thC vampire hunting kit in its archives, but not on display."

db - mebullo OMEN OR WOT?

saint said...

Would like to answer your question at LP Kerryn, but you know, there's a redactor on board there who would do the ACMA proud. And the first rule of censorship is that you can't talk about censorship.

Nabakov said...

"Or maybe a road-trip western "

- Near Dark
- John Carpenter's Vampires

Why not vampires on ice?
'White Fang'

19th century Australian revolutionary vampires?
'Blood On The Wattle'

19th century Australian vampires redeemed?
'For The Term Of His Natural Life'

On Her Majesty's secret bloodsucking service?
'Tomorrow Never Dies'

Vampire navigators?
'Blood Meridian'

Chinese vampires reenact King Lear over dinner?
'Eat, Drink, Man, Woman'

Vampires regret strenously playing MOR jazz-funk?
'Blood, Sweat and Tears'

Not to bright Southern vampires get religion?
'Wise Blood'

IRA dynamite throwing vampires caught up in a Mexican revolution?
'Duck, You Sucker'

Astronaut vampires?
'Blood On The Moon'

Final episode of an increasingly self-consciously ludicrous Aussie soap opera starring Jeremy Sims' buttocks and much other cleavage that introduced alien vampires to spice things up?
'Fangs For The Mammary'

Eastern European oligarch buys up property in England?

There's probably an after dinner game in this. Or at least a bloody crossword. One that'd certainly be more fun than "Watch Saint Whinge Around The Blogosphere".

Pavlov's Cat said...

Vampires on Ice is definitely a goer, whichever sense one is using the word in. Both, even. Vampire Crocs on Ice?

As for Saint, I can't help wondering what sort of person gives himself a nom de blog like that. Particularly considering his behaviour.

Nabakov said...

"Particularly considering his behaviour."

Whaddya mean "his"? you unthinking patriarchal oppressor? Willfully blind bitches come in all sexes.

Incidentally this comment capchta is "switypet".

Now that's gotta mean something to someone here. Looking at you tortoiseshell lounge machine voguing at the top of this blog.