Thursday, August 10, 2006

Past Redemption Cover

Past Redemption

Book 2 in the vampire chronicles appeared in the stores in April. It is available everywhere. Book 3, Beneath the Skin, is coming out in February 2007 . . . and three more episodes will follow. Happy reading!

Jung, the Shadow Self, and the Vampire Within

We all have a darkside. When I write about vampires, I am really exploring our relationship to the dark, socially unacceptable parts of our being that exist within us, but that we don't want to acknowledge.
If you have ever said, "Oh I would never do THAT." You are fooling yourself and ignoring your Shadow Self, because every human has the capacity to do THAT, whatever THAT is.
Jung, simply put, believed that all our positive aspects had an opposite which we usually suppressed or denied--otherwise normally law-abiding young men could not go to war and kill, for example. The violent, the twisted, the cruel, the aggressive, the animal self are all alive and active inside all of us.
For my heroine Daphne Urban, her vampire self is her shadow self. It is promiscuous, amoral, and dangerous. It hunts down humans. It is immensely powerful. And that is the point...the Shadow Side has a purpose. It is powerful. It is what helps us survive. It keeps us from becoming victims because it will fight, not submit.
If we embrace our Shadow Self, and give it expression in non-harmful ways to yourself or others (art, music, writing and other creative acts), it can set us free, as Daphne is set free when she transforms into a bat. To deny our Shadow Self is to not know ourselves, and be at its mercy. To realize that even the sweetest, kindest person in the world has the capacity within herself to murder, for example, is both disturbing...and enlightening. Because knowing we have the Shadow Self lets us make choices to use it in positive ways. Viva Jung!

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Bats again. . . and night noises

The heat continues now in the dog days of August. A cicada chorus outside my open window fills the night with an eerie chirping. The bats have returned too, diving around the lamppost in the yard. These are small bats, dipping and soaring as they hunt mosquitoes. Last year larger ones dominated the sky. I wonder if they perished over the terribly cold winter we had. I prefer to believe they just moved down the road a bit. Bats only have one offspring a year, reproducing so slowly that all bat species are now endangered. So losing even a few from this area is disturbing.
As the temperatures climbed toward ninety today, I was sitting in front of my computer in the small room I call my office. I was writing about vampires again and once again the characters took over, carrying my heroine from present day New York back to London in 1808, to the night where she first saw Lord Byron, loved him, and sealed his fate. I hadn't expected to go there, to a masked ball in an elegant mansion in Regency England, but that is where I was led as Daphne Urban remembered the passion that haunts her still...
Ah well, the night air here is still heavy and hot. Time to get away from the computer and wander outside.
Savannah

Friday, July 29, 2005

Book 1 of the Darkwing Chronicles

THE SKINNY ON BATS . . . AND VAMPIRES

I don't know why people are so afraid of bats. Bad press? In truth they are gentle creatures and of vital importance to the environment. They range in size from tiny (the world's smallest mammal) to pretty doggone big--the flying fox has a wingspan of over six feet. And yes there are vampire bats. They live only in Latin America, so how bats and Count Dracula ended up mixed in our collective unconscious, I don't know.
And in my stories, vampires are much maligned too. Of course some of them are pure evil, preying on humans to preserve their immortality, but the vampires of my fiction are humans who have been "transformed." Now they are more than human: they are a type of dark angel who contain within their souls (assuming they do have souls) the potential for tremendous good as well as the risk for horrifying wrongdoing. With great power--which they possess--comes the danger of great corruption. Yet my Team Darkwing--the new Fab Four of Daphne, Benny, Cormac, and Bubba--are striving to be superheroes. They are superspies, recruited as a deep black operation by an unnamed U.S. Security Agency and committed to "truth, justice, and the American way." Sure any of them may slip... who among us is perfect?
But for the real deal about bats, the Bat Conservation International has been putting out the truth since 1982. You can take a look at their website www.batcon.org. Heck, I think bats are as cute and cuddly as a baby seal anyday.
Hugs from
Savannah

Wednesday, July 27, 2005


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Tuesday, July 26, 2005

BATS AT DUSK AND DAWN

Four bats were swooping around the chimney top last evening when the last dying light left the sky. I sat on the deck watching, thinking of the Darkwing Team and what their next adventure would be. The sky faded from royal blue to black and still the bats flew in jerky dips and dives, silhouetted against the lightpost in the front yard. Ancient they are, so clearly not of our times but of some more mysterious past, giving rise to the idea of the vampire, to me the embodiment of the human dark side . . . the hidden parts of us we try so hard to pretend are not there, but exist within each and every one of us. And the sad thing is, the dark side is not evil, but simply wild . . . and we need to acknowledge our wildness, connect to our primitive heritage, and let go the artifacts of our society and return to our core. To fly with the bats in an ancient hunt for freedom . . .
This morning predawn, the bats still flew, vanishing at last when dawn's soft pink glow began to creep over the mountains across the valley from where I stood watching quietly in the silent gray light.
Savannah

Monday, July 25, 2005

Beyond the Pale

Hi, I'm Savannah Russe, author of the Darkwing Chronicles, a contemporary vampire series. Book I, Beyond the Pale, came out back on June 7, 2005 and now I'm hard at work on book 2, Past Redemption, scheduled for release next spring.
A lot of readers had questions about my vampires, and I'm hoping this blog gives us a way to communicate--for me to answer and you to ask, comment, and contribute to the story as it unfolds.
First of all, one reader asked for a more detailed description of what Daphne Urban looks like when she transforms into a vampire bat. That description is going to be in Past Redemption for sure, but to the specific question of does she have wings that are part of her arms...
No. Her arms remain free to both embrace and to attack with. The bat wings emerge from her back, like angelss wings... Her fingernails do however become longer and clawlike, making it doggone hard to dial a cellphone.
Second, one testy reader felt Daphne was too much of a pushover when it came to Darius and his treatment of her. I can only plead that Daphne may be a vampire, but she is also a woman, and she's crazy nuts in love with Darius. Her head says sure, tell him off, forget him, move on with her life. . . and her heart is breaking. She's willing to forgive and forget, as long as they can be together again. Maybe not all women are fools when it comes to the man who steals their hearts, but I sure am, Daphne is, and not just most, but I have to say all the women I know just lose their reason when it comes to love. Sure we hurt too easily and stay long past the time we should walk away...but when we fall in love, we want to love forever and with all our being.
And last, in defense of Darius, that gorgeous hunk of man-- Daphne did, after all, hide the teensy weensy little fact that she was a vampire from him. And worse, far worse, in his eyes, she took away his identity. Everything he was, she changed not only with her love . . . but with her bite. As a warrior, Darius believed that dying in battle was the honorable way to go...and instead, he became the being Daphne created, not the man he made of himself. But Daphne's not the only woman who set out to change a man (to save him, naturally) and lost him in the process...
Can he forgive her? Does he still love her? Can he accept his new identity and see it her way? I think they have a rocky future unless love, true love, conquers all.
Well, that's enough for today!
Day is here, and I need to wait for night when the bats awake...
Savannah