I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Wynne Channing, a national newspaper reporter and young adult novelist. Aside from interviewing herself, she has interviewed everyone from Daniel Radcliffe and Hugh Jackman to the president of the Maldives and Duchess Sarah Ferguson. The closest she has come to interviewing a vampire is sitting down with True Blood’s Alexander Skarsgard (he didn’t bite). She briefly considered calling her debut novel “Well” so then everyone would say: “Well written by Wynne Channing.” Haha. I chatted with the hilarious author about her vampire novel What Kills Me and more. Check it out!
Can you tell us a little about your book What Kills Me?
Of course! The story is about a prophecy which warns of a girl destined to cause the extinction of the vampire race. My heroine, Zee, is just a normal 17-year-old girl in search of adventure when she falls into a well filled with blood. But being hunted to the death by every vampire in the world wasn’t the kind of adventure she had in mind. I think a summer romance or bungee jumping would have sufficed.
How does What Kills Me differ from other novels about vampires?
When I wrote the novel, I didn’t try to make my vampires extremely different — I didn’t give them tails or blue skin (ooh, there’s an idea: Vampire Smurfs!) — I wanted to create realistic characters and a fast-paced, thrilling plot. The vampire empire in What Kills Me is ruled by an Empress; every vampire has a sacred duty: warriors, clerics, swordsmiths, pages, etc. It’s a world of order and tradition — one that does not welcome Zee’s arrival.
What inspired you to write about vampires?
Vampires are everything that we want to be. Eternally beautiful and ageless. Powerful and mysterious. (Well, maybe that whole drinking blood and having no soul thing might suck… I’m happy drinking my root beer and not having to worry about damnation.)
What is one thing you would like people to take away from their experience of reading What Kills Me?
I hope they had a fantastic ride. I hope they laughed when Zee and her reluctant ally, Lucas, butted heads (which they do about everything). I hope they were tense when characters fought for their lives. I hope they related to Zee’s spirit and her bravery. Most of all, I hope they want to continue the adventure.
What is your favorite vampire book, movie and/or show?
I loved Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Joss Whedon’s a genius.
Who’s your favorite fictitious vampire (other than your own)?
In Buffy, I was on Team Spike. (Throw back: “Have we met?” Buffy’s mother asks him. “Uh, you hit me with an axe one time,” Spike replies. “Remember, ‘Get the hell away from my daughter?'”
I also used to really like Eric Northman on True Blood before he lost his memory and got all soft. (I’ve interviewed Alexander Skarsgard and he’s as nice as Eric can be evil.)
Tell our readers why they should check out your book – in 3 words: (bwahaha)
Life favors bravery.
And finally, what other projects are you currently working on? Any goodies we should watch out for?
By day, I’m a feature writer at a national newspaper so I’m always working on something fun. By night, I teach Latin dance and I’m working on the sequel to What Kills Me.
Blurb for What Kills Me:
An ancient prophecy warns of a girl destined to cause the extinction of the vampire race. So when 17-year-old Axelia falls into a sacred well filled with blood and emerges a vampire, the immortal empire believes she is this legendary destroyer. Hunted by soldiers and mercenaries, Axelia and her reluctant ally, the vampire bladesmith Lucas, must battle to survive. How will she convince the empire that she is just an innocent teenager-turned bloodsucker and not a creature of destruction? And if she cannot, can a vampire who is afraid of bugs summon the courage to fight a nation of immortals?
You can pick up your very own copy of What Kills Me here.