It looks like I will be doing at least two author interviews near Blood Toy’s launch later this month. One of the most curiously difficult questions to answer on my last interview was “Why did you choose to write this particular genre?” I haven’t reinvented the wheel or anything, but Blood Toy straddles a few genres.
It is not just a vampire novel. The chief baddie is a vamp, but as reviewers have pointed out, there is a large cast of characters, many of the paranormal variety. It is not just erotic, but there is enough erotica in it that one reviewer implied it made her other adult books seem like they belonged at the kiddie table. And I have said repeatedly it is NOT a paranormal romance, but there is a relationship in it.
What makes Blood Toy a dark urban fantasy is the abuse element explored throughout. When I first introduced Diane Woods to Christopher Desollador, I was 16, and so was she. We knew Desollador was a bad news. We couldn’t change him, in part because he didn’t want to be changed, but mostly because we wouldn’t have wanted him any other way. In fact, in every rewrite, he became a little more sadistic and Diane’s reactions to him a little more conflicted. It wasn’t a choice so much as an evolution.
It could have been just their story, and I contemplated going down that path, but that would have made Blood Toy something else. A paranormal romance or dark erotica along the lines of Kitty Thomas The Last Girl maybe? The cast of characters, the POV shifts and the complicated mythologies hinted at in Book 1 are central to the series, if not the book. Initially Desollador was not even my chief baddie, and when it comes down to it, he still isn’t. He is just the most immediate and confusing threat to Diane.
I don’t know what made me choose this genre. I have always loved fantasy—urban, epic, traditional—and horror. Then I had this brief obsession with bodice rippers and erotica. When I set out to write the book I wanted to read, I chose my favorite elements of each genre, threw them into a blender and made myself a power smoothie. Blood Toy is what came out. And I sincerely hope you love it as much as I do. Because I did not write this to sell. I edited it to sell. But I wrote it simply…to read.
(Which is a good thing since I am currently reading it for the nine millionth time in an effort to catch any little typos that made it into the final files.)