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25 Apr 2013

V is for Vampire...

Yeah, sorry, this vampire obsessed freak is going to ramble on about them. *blushes*.  But no, I'm not going to gush about the latest hot vampire.  I'm not even going to talk about those type of vampires.  The ones who use too much body glitter, like to attend high school and make blood drinking sexy for some insane reason.

I do write about vampires and have done so in the past.  But my interests lie in that folkloric vampire who was a menace.  Demonic.  Fear.  Not very attractive and more urban legends to scare the townsfolk. 

I bought this book a few years ago when I started plotting Beast Inside.  Vampires: A Field Guide to the Creatures that Stalk the Night by Dr Bob Curran.  The author was inspired to write this book after noticing what the vampire is like in modern culture, acknowledging how the idea of this creature has changed since the likes of Dracula, Carmilla and all the way to the present day with the Salvatore Brothers, Edward Cullen and Angel.

And in response to our modern day vamps we get a book that explores where the myths actually came from, looking at different lore and belief that involved vampiric-like creatures.  And that's what I love, more so than the supposedly handsome and alluring creature we get in modern culture.  Even if you don't like vampires this is a great book to have if you're looking for some monster inspiration.  And if you do like vampires, this is great for exploring different folklore.

Some of my favourites:

Assyrian Ekimmu

A type of ghost, meaning 'that which is snatched away', typically from a violent and untimely death.  The Assyrians believed their dead entered the House of Darkness, eternally shut away in darkness.  But there were some who didn't pass and as a result of being refused entry they became violent and hostile towards the living, even known to attack.  Some descriptions have the Ekimmu as walking corpses and there was also confusion to when the Ekimmu appeared but some accounts do have them as appearing only at night.  The Ekimmu took certain forms, the most vicious being the alu which again was a creature who had a violent or untimely death.  They were known to be thin, pale and had scabbed lips.  They also drank the blood of those who were dying.

Leanan Sidhe

A vampiric type of fairy.  Tales of these blood drinking fairies appeared in Irish folklore and also in the Western Isles of Scotland.  They were known to inhabit ruined fortresses and abandoned churches in the Scottish West where they attacked passers-by.

The Draugr

In Norse/Icelandic mythology the draugr was a term for the wandering and vicious walking dead.  They were recognised by their skin colour being death blue or corpse pale.  There was also a reek of decay and corruption from these creatures.  They were known to have immense strength and could increase the size of their bodies.  The draugr killed their victims by crushing them either eating them or drinking their blood.  In some cases a victim of a draugr was known to become one as well.

6 comments:

  1. I love vampires have ever since I watched Interview with a Vampire when I was a kid. I started writing a Vampire book before twilight came out, but after that I was too scared to try and put it out. Maybe one day.

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    1. I have, ever since I watched a dubbed version of The Little Vampire German TV series.

      I'm with you on feeling a tad worried about trying to publish my vamp book. It's not even romance, it's all horror. But I do feel people will judge it because it's about vampires and there's such a bad rep to them now because of pnr.

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  2. I have no interest in the shiny vampires. The vampires I remember are the ones from the old Hammer movies, and, of course, 'Salem's Lot. That was back in my younger days, you understand. Before I was not really into horror. And before I was not really a fan of Stephen King. ;)

    I actually have an idea for a vampire story. Probably more of an NA than YA story. We'll see if it ever makes the light of day... or the glow of moonlight. :)

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    1. Give me 'Salem's Lot over the broody, shiny ones any day. :) Vampires aren't vampires anymore.

      Vampire? NA? I hope you do get round to that one day, Colin. :) I'm already interested!

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  3. Great! I did a similar post today myself.

    I'll post a link to your post so my readers can read some more.

    --
    Tim Brannan
    The Other Side and The Witch
    Red Sonja: She-Devil with a Sword
    The Freedom of Nonbelief

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    1. Excellent! I'll be reading that after work today! =D

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