{Guest} Matthew D Ryan

Vampires from a Guy’s Point of View

Vampires abound in fiction. The success of the “Twilight” series indicates that there is a large market for depicting vampires as strong love-interests with something of a dark shadow on their souls. In essence, vampire chic lit. As a guy, I don’t find such vampires very interesting. As a guy, I’m usually looking for a subtext of violent conflict in my vampire stories, and with few exceptions (one being the Underworld movie series), I’m not much interested in romantic stories involving vampires.

Though there was some romance hinted at in the original “Dracula” by Bram Stoker, that was typically “proper” Victorian human-human romance. Dracula was not seen as a love interest in any way. There may have been some repressed sexual overtones—I’ve seen references that claim the book was about homosexuality, and others saying it was about rape (I think the latter is somewhat more plausible)—but I see the book as primarily a work of horror. Count Dracula was a monster; he had no redeeming features. He did not sparkle, like Edward Cullen, he did not ruminate like Anne Rice’s Lestat. He simply fed, killed and damned.

It’s been several years since I’ve read Dracula, but I seem to recall the action was kind of tame by modern standards. Still, this is the character that I, as a male reader, want to see in a vampire. Anne Rice’s Louis and Lestat held some interest for a brief period of time. Conceiving of a vampire as a reflective killer torn apart by angst was an original twist when it first came out. But nowadays that has become almost cliché, and in ways, it was the first step to humanizing the vampire which eventually gave us “Twilight.”

No, as a guy, when I read about vampires I want to see evil explored. The vampire as the prototypical villain with a host of supernatural powers to aid his fell designs. When one humanizes the vampire, as much vampire chic lit does, one has a tendency to lose many of the supernatural traits that mark them and make them interesting. At the very least, the powers in question become reduced in significance. The fact that a vampire can be incinerated by sunlight makes it a potentially beatable foe. How does that compute with sparkling? All the original powers (and weaknesses) of the vampire gave it a unique and compelling flavor that is slowly being whittled away by the process of humanizing them.

I, for one, prefer the vampire as a monster. It’s my “inner dragonslayer” perhaps. The beast that can control the weather, transform into a wolf, and escape as mist presents the hero’s challenge. It is a foe whose diabolical nature reverberates through the ages. It is a foe that leaves destruction in his wake. It is a foe that must be defeated or else all is lost.

About the Author

Matthew D. Ryan is a published author living in upstate New York on the shores of Lake Champlain. He has a background in philosophy, mathematics, and computer science. He also has a black belt in the martial arts and studies yoga. He has been deeply involved in the fantasy genre for most of his life as a reader, writer, and game designer. He believes he saw the legendary Lake Champlain Monster (a.k.a Champy) once and he has a cat named Confucius.

 Contact

Matthew D. Ryan
Author of Drasmyr: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/131156
Check Out My Blog: http://www.atoasttodragons.com

About Bek Harrington

Writer, author, vampire fan and historical enthusiast. You'll often find me crusing the internet under the guise of my alter ego, 3000 year old vampire "Bektamun"

Posted on 28/06/2012, in Guests and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. Thanks for letting me guest blog today. It’s been fun working with you.

  2. Your welcome Matt. I really enjoyed your post, gave me a lot to think about before I start on my next project.

  1. Pingback: Guest Blogging at Rebeka Harrington’s Blog « A Toast to Dragons

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