Many great authors have hailed from Memphis including Eternal Vigilance author, Gabrielle Faust. Although born in Memphis, TN, she now resides in Austin, Texas. Ms. Faust is definitely a woman after my own heart because she is a vampire enthusiast and a huge Kyle Schmid fan! Ok, all of you who know me, also know that I can’t resist the chance to mention my favorite vampire actor any chance I get. So, read the interview below and find out how Ms.Faust became interested in vampires and what she had to say about Mr. Schmid.
Can you tell us a little about yourself?
Where to begin? I was born in Memphis, Tennessee to an outspoken hippie political activist and a Taoist musician tai-chi instructor. We relocated to Austin, Texas when I was two where I have lived ever since. For ten years I pursued a career as an abstract painter and advertising art director until I made decision to chase my true passion of becoming a novelist. I published two collections of poetry, BEFORE ICARUS, AFTER ACHILLES and CROSSROADS before finding a publisher for the first book in my post-apocalyptic vampire series ETERNAL VIGILANCE. Three years later I am now awaiting the release of the third novel in the ETERNAL VIGILANCE series, as well as a new novella entitled REGRET, which will be released later this year by Dark Regions Press. Along with screenwriter/director Anthony Brownrigg, I am currently working on the screenplay adaptation of the ETERNAL VIGILANCE series, which we hope to secure funding for this year.
What made you decide to become and author?
Writing has been the greatest passion of mine since I was a small child. Both of my grandparents on my father's side were poets and playwrights and encouraged my interest in the art from the time I was old enough to pick up a pencil. While I studied creative writing in college, I made the conscious decision to pursue writing as a career about five years when I realized that my other career path of gallery art and graphic design, simply was not fulfilling me in the way I had always thought it was. I suppose you could say that writing is my "joy" and since dedicating myself completely to it, I am the happiest I have ever been in my life. There is absolutely nothing like crafting a story that you know other people are reading and allowing themselves to become immersed in, who are enjoying it as much as you are. Truly amazing!
For those who have not read your Eternal Vigilance books, can you tell us a bit of what they are about?
The ETERNAL VIGILANCE series is quite the epic saga. Currently there are three books with three more, a separate trilogy which will take place after the downfall of the Tyst Empire, planned over the next few years. The tale is told first person through the eyes of an ancient vampire, Tynan Llywelyn, who wakes up after a long sleep to find himself drawn into the rebel uprising against a global, technological empire who wants to become immortal by resurrecting a vampiric god. Cast in violence and conspiracy into the midst of a global war between magic and technology, mortals and vampires, in a new world he is still struggling to define, Tynan must make the harrowing decision to save the world he so bitterly detests or stand and watch as humanity is destroyed by a primordial evil beyond all imagining.
I have heard that you would like to see Kyle Schmid play the role of the character Tynan in your book if it ever goes to the movie screen. Is this true and who else would you like to see cast as other characters from the book?
Absolutely! Kyle Schmid would be perfect for the lead of Tynan Llywelyn. He has the poise and elegance, along with the strength of character to truly embrace the character and make him come to life on the big screen. Outside of Schmid, I have also pictured Charlie Hunnam, James McAvoy, Taylor Kitsch, Luke Goss, Daniel Henney, Jason Scott Lee, Sophia Myles, Julie Benz and Rose McGowan among the many actors I've envisioned as possible cast members for the film. The list of actors will be lengthy for this film.
Being a huge Kyle Schmid fan, I would personally love to see him as Tynan as would many others. When and how did you become aware of him as an actor and what qualities of his do you think will make him perfect for the role of Tynan?
I first took notice of Kyle Schmid when a friend of mine introduced me to the series BLOOD TIES a few years ago and I have to say he is the primary reason why BLOOD TIES is now amongst my top favorite series. Asides from his striking features, there is something absolutely mesmerizing about the way he integrates himself into a character. His performance becomes so easy and fluid that you immediately accept him as the role he is portraying as if he has been that person in real life. The role of "Tynan" would be perfect because it is a character-driven role that has many levels to it from that of an unwitting, torn anti-hero to a tortured philosophical leader to a seductive sexy vampire. It is a role that I would love to see Schmid's interpretation of because I know in my heart of hearts it would be simply stunning.
When were you first attracted to the vampire genre and was there anything in particular that pulled you in?
I was first introduced to vampire literature by my mother in fifth grade when she gave me her copies of Interview With the Vampire and The Vampire Lestat. I had always been a fan of vampires since I could remember, having been enthralled with vampire movies and television shows such as Nosferatu, Dark Shadows and Fright Night, but I had never actually read a vampire novel before that point. I was instantly absorbed into Anne Rice’s tales and the tragically romantic portrayal of her vampires’ world. After the first two novels, I eagerly devoured any piece of vampire literature I could get my hands on, and still do to this day. While my view of vampires and, thus, my attachment to their world, has evolved over the years to have a much more vast and intense perspective, initially I believe my attraction to the literary genre stemmed from my association with their inability to ever truly feel at home in a human world. Their innate loneliness and isolation was something I identified with as a child, having grown up in a very dark and tumultuous household. As a child I not only felt their pain, but longed to have the power they held, not only over mortals, but over time and life itself. It was mesmerizing and addictive…
Who are some of your favorite authors?
There are so many amazing authors, but a few of my favorites are Michael Marano, Kim Paffenroth, Storm Constantine, C.S. Lewis, Barbara Hambly, Brian Lumley, Anne Rice, Katherine Kerr, Poppy Z. Brite, Marion Zimmer Bradley, William Gibson, Hunter S. Thompson, Leonard Cohen, Neil Gaiman...the list goes on and on!
As an author do you think this vampire trend will continue much longer or do you see it dying out soon (sorry for the bad pun), and resurrecting itself again in another 5 years and do you buy the explanation as some people say that during times of bad economy that people lean toward the vampire genre as a form of escape and comfort?
Most genres are cyclical. In my observation the vampire genre in particular appears to cycle around every ten years. Right now we are at the apex of the new craze so I would expect we have at least another four or five years of solid fanaticism before it begins to wane. The fans are always there, but it is the studio and publisher interest we have to keep fanning in order to extend the wave as long as possible. For me, vampires, outside of writing, are a life long passion. Regardless of "trends" I have been studying the genre and the lore for as long as I can remember and will continue to do so. As for the sociological and psychological aspect of people's gravitation towards the horror genre in times of civil unrest and economic hardship, I agree completely. When people see their lives spinning out of control they reach for an escape that is either far better than their own reality or far worse to make them feel more at ease about the current state of society. With the vampire genre, vampires are the ultimate escape from reality in that they are immortal, beautiful, usually portrayed as independently wealthy and far removed from any of the daily threats or concerns we experience as human beings existing in a mortal society. It is an irresistible fantasy that many, despite the more unfavorable aspects of being a vampire, would readily trade their current lives for.
As a published author, as well a poet, do you have any advice for other writers aspiring to be/get published in print, esp. as it pertains to poetry? Especially as several (many?) publications pass on, or are not as readily accepting to publish poetry, as they would say, short stories or novellas?
My key advice points: Develop a thick skin and never give up. The publishing industry is a brutal one. A friend of mine equated it one time to having your soul slowly ripped out through your nose. Not to frighten anyone, but you have to learn how to take your blows, the criticism and the rejections because EVERY author goes through hundreds of them, if not thousands, in their lifetime. It's just the nature of the beast. Just as in the music or film businesses, the publishing world also has a lot of shady characters living amongst its shadows, people posing as publishers or agents who do not necessarily have your best interest at heart. Keep your eyes open, read everything before signing it and always ask for advice. This all said, never give up. As Marilyn vos Savant once said "Being defeated is often a temporary condition. Giving up is what makes it permanent." If your dream is to become a published author keep at it. Take the advice of editors and agents and learn from your harshest critics to make your work the best it can be. If you believe in something great enough, it will eventually happen, but have patience. As for poetry...I forget who said it but you'll never get rich off of poetry. I write poetry and have two collections published. However, I write poetry because I love it dearly. Short stories, novellas and novels are always the most likely to be published and most widely read.
What things can we expect from you in the future and is there anything else that you would like to add?
The next two years are going to be absolutely magnificent! The third ETERNAL VIGILANCE novel, as well as my new demon novella REGRET will be out in late September. I will be touring heavily, appearing at various different events and conventions over the next few months leading up to the UnDeadCon, Memnoch Resurrection & Endless Night vampire festivals in New Orleans where the official release parties will be held for the above mentioned novels. I will also be touring heavily in 2011 on my new book tour, so be sure to check the Appearances section of my website to see where I'll be each month. Hopefully, we'll have news about the movie adaptation soon so that is yet another item to keep an eye out for. Regular updates and news can always be found on www.gabriellefaust.com. Thank you so much for the opportunity to be featured in your column. I deeply appreciate the support of you and your readers! XOV'''VOX
If you have read Ms. Faust’s books, comment below and tell us who you would like to see cast as some of the characters if Eternal Vigilance goes to the movie screen.