Colleen Gleason Q&A: Sexy, scary vampires and happily-ever-afters in Regency Draculia

Colleen Gleason, author of THE VAMPIRE VOSS

Author Colleen Gleason

Colleen Gleason knows how to merge sexy and scary in her novels. We like that. Today the first in her Regency Draculia series, The Vampire Voss, hits shelves. The first of a rapid release of three novels set in 1800s London featuring dark vampires, lords and ladies, balls, murder and teeming with romance. Tomorrow we’ll post our review of The Vampire Voss, but today Colleen was kind enough to indulge our questions about vampires, balancing seductive and scary and happily ever after for the bad boy and the society girl.

Vampire Book Club: There aren’t exactly “good” or “bad” vampires in your novel, but two distinct factions. Can you explain how the two vary and the division?

Colleen Gleason: Well, all of the vampires, or, as they call themselves, the Dracule, were personally invited to join the ranks of immortality by Lucifer himself. Each person who accepted, in doing so, for all intents sold his/her soul to the devil.

Now that they are living this vampiric life—feeding on humans for their blood, living an immortal life with power and pleasure—there are different perspectives on how to live among their mortal counterparts.

There are those who live with no conscience whatsoever, unconcerned with any repercussions, and who take without thought or without care. These vampires feed on their victims until they die, or leave them to die. They haven’t any care for mortals at all.

The Vampire Voss by Colleen GleasonAnd then there is the other sort of perspective—a live and let live mindset. The vampires must have blood to live, but they don’t have to destroy the person on whom they feed, for example in order to do so. Just as we don’t have to butcher the cow to have its milk or cheese, these vampires can live and let live in that sense. They still have a bit of a conscience.

Vampire Book Club: The Draculia vampires are a tantalizing blend of seductive and scary. Was it hard to balance the two elements?

Colleen Gleason: In some ways, no, not really. When one thinks about the kind of person a Dracule would be—someone who was willing to sell his/her soul to the devil for whatever reason (Lucifer is very good at manipulating a person to believe it’s the right decision, of course)—and someone who can live forever, who has power and pleasure beyond the comprehension of us mortals…I think that sort of person can’t help but be scary. After all, they have no reason to care about anyone other than themselves.

To balance that scariness, however, is the very element that makes a vampire seductive…not only the ability to enthrall, but also the whole fang-penetration/sexual aspect of his/her life. That penetration in the most erogenous of zones, that taking so intimately, particularly at the hands/fangs of a handsome, confident being….how could one resist?

To me, those two sides of the coin are instrumental to my Dracule, and why, in the end, they have to fight for love.

Vampire Book Club: What brought about the idea of noble vampires in Regency-era London?

Colleen Gleason: Quite honestly, it was my publisher who suggested a sexy, dark vampire series set in Regency London.

The idea of the Regency era is very common in romance, and I think the same reasons that attract readers to this time period (the balls, the dance cards, the theater, foggy mysterious London, the manners and of course the brooding dukes and the naughty, rakish viscounts) are also what make a vampire element so compelling.

Who doesn’t want to imagine that at a masquerade ball, one of those sexy masked men is really a vampire, waiting to lure an unsuspecting debutante into the corner…where he can remove her gloves and nibble on her wrist?

The Vampire Dimitri by Colleen GleasonVampire Book Club: Voss is definitely the bad boy. What makes him a good match for a society girl like Angelica?

Colleen Gleason: Well, even though Angelica is a society girl, she’s not a complete fuddy-duddy (not like her sister, anyway). She wants adventure—in small doses—she wants a sexy, handsome, loving man to want her, she’s social and enjoys being around people. She’s also intelligent and we all tend to love the “normal” woman who brings the bad-boy rake to his knees.

Except that any “normal” woman wouldn’t be able to do that…there has to be something about her that makes him love her. And with Angelica, it’s the wisdom beyond her years that makes the difference for her and Voss, the wisdom she’s gained because of her Gypsy Sight.

Vampire Book Club: Voss and Angelica’s own hang-ups cause more grief than the vampire end of things (which I loved). Why was it important for them to get in the way of their own happiness?

Colleen Gleason: Because, in the end, it’s all about who they are as people—what their morals, beliefs, strengths, and philosophies are. If we’re going to believe in their Happy Ever After, we have to know that as people they are right for each other.

And because they’re people, they have to work through their differences in philosophy, morals, beliefs, etc., in order to grow into someone the other person can love.

Vampire Book Club: With The Regency Draculia series and The Envy Chronicles (written under penname Joss Ware), you step to another time-period. What is it about a time and society away from our own that’s so appealing?

Colleen Gleason: I think for me it’s all about the world-building. I get to go to another place and make it what I want it to be.

I also like to take modern-day concepts and drop them into a different time and place, just to see what happens. And it works the other way: no cell phones, no motorized vehicles, none of the conveniences we rely on…how does that make their conflicts different and more or less compelling?

Vampire Book Club: Will we continue to interact with Voss and Angelica in the coming novels?

Colleen Gleason: Yes, indeed. Voss and Angelica will appear in Dimitri’s story, as well as briefly in Narcise’s story.

The Vampire Narcise by Colleen GleasonVampire Book Club: I was a bit enamored with Dimitri. What can we expect in his story – The Vampire Dimitri (releases April 19) – and will it involve the other Woodmore sister?

Colleen Gleason: I’m so glad you enjoyed Dimitri. I confess, I have a soft spot for the brooding, cranky hero, just because I love to see them meet their match. Yes indeed, Dimitri is going to have his hands full with Maia planning her wedding under his very nose, disrupting his household, opening curtains to let that dangerous sun blaze in, and—gasp—rearranging the books in his library.

I had a lot of fun with Maia and Dimitri, and I hope my readers will too!

Thank you so much for having me here today!

Vampire Book Club: We loved having you. Readers, you can order a copy of The Vampire Voss from The Book Depository or Amazon. For more on the Regency Draculia series and Colleen’s other works, check out her website.

The three novels in The Regency Draculia series are: The Vampire Voss (released today), The Vampire Dimitri (out April 19) and The Vampire Narcise (out in June). Also, if you are game for some post-apocalyptic romance, try Colleen’s The Envy Chronicles series written under the name Joss Ware.

3 Responses to “Colleen Gleason Q&A: Sexy, scary vampires and happily-ever-afters in Regency Draculia”

  1. As a writer, I like my vampires to have human qualities despite being immortals with the power of life and death over us mere mortals. Thanks for the great post.

  2. Kristin says:

    Loved the interview! I’ve been wanting to read this series for awhile!

  3. Annabel says:

    I loved the interview! I’ve read the first book already and the other two are on my TBR list.


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