I wanted to come up with some interesting questions to ask E.B. Hood, the author of Melabeth. The first question below may seem a little rude out of context, but it is based on some research I did as to what question an author would like to be asked, and a commentary I saw from an author about other authors on social networks asking you to buy their book without bothering to explain why anyone should. That said, let’s find out a little more about E.B. Hood and Melabeth.
Why should we buy your book?
Do you like action? A little romance? What about mystery? Humor perhaps? If you have been waiting for a book with vampires set in a backdrop of reality, wait no more.
Ok, ok, that was in my big announcer voice. If you like to read, I like to entertain. I have had a great deal of positive feedback from readers young and old alike. I am not doing this for gain or glory. What means the most to me, is when someone as really enjoyed my story. If I touch someone’s heart, then that would be to me, true success.
How early did you begin writing? Had you written much before Melabeth?
I began writing Melabeth in November of 2011. Surprisingly, I had never written anything more than an email before Melabeth. I am a voracious reader; my younger brother was the aspiring writer. My brother Nick passed away from brain cancer at the age of thirty one. He had only finished one short story, which I hope to publish this summer. I tried writing in honor of my brother’s memory, and found out two things. One, I love it, and two I am surprisingly good at it; I have always been a story teller, I guess it came naturally.
Why did you choose to write a vampire story?
I have always been captivated by vampire stories. My favorite books are Dracula and the Lord of the Rings. I have a saying, “I love a story told, in the backdrop of reality.”
Are you a believer in vampires or anything supernatural?
I do believe in the supernatural. I have not personally encountered any vampires, but I am open minded, just in case I do.
You use the word “warlock” for a male witch. But actual Wiccans find this word deeply offensive. Were you aware of this?
The simple answer would be, no. It is viewed differently throughout time and by various people. The early Christian Monks translated this word to mean, “Oath breaker” and who would want to be that? Newer translations bring the meaning to “spell singer” they warded off evil spirits during religious ceremony. Of course there is the simple modern definition: “Male Witch.” I believe this best matches the description I wanted. I had never heard that wiccans found the word offensive. In my book, being a Warlock was a male witch, not the Christian translation.
Among the most unique aspects of your vampires is their eyes. Can you tell us what went into that choice?
In a lot of movies vampire’s eyes glow. A cool effect, but I wanted a more organic feel. Being creatures of the night, large eyes would naturally capture more light and allow for better night vision. I also thought there should be tell-tale signs of vampires when they are trying to blend in. The idea that their fangs would come out, along with claws and elongated fingers, but their eyes would always show what they really were.
What led to the choice of a female lead?
That was the hardest choice, by far. I almost didn’t write this story because I was nervous about writing from a female’s point of view. No one has had a problem with my interpretation of a young female. The overall theme of the Melabeth series is about forgiveness. The bigger the sin, the more forgiveness needed. I have a daughter; therefore when Melabeth is victimized, it is my worst fear, for her and all women. I personally believe we live in a time when woman are free, yet more abused than ever.
What influences led you to choose the decades the story takes place?
I’m afraid I can’t answer this question, but I can say this; it will make sense by the end of the third book.
Who would play Melabeth in a film? Thoughts of any other casting choices for other characters?
I had pictured Dakota Fanning, but not all red eyed, acting like a Vulcan. Emma Watson would be a great choice as well.
Do you have a routine when you’re writing? Music? Atmosphere?
I wish! I work full time and have three kids. I write wherever I can. I could write during a tornado; interruptions-I am used to. In fact, I don’t think I have written for more than a hour at a time.
What have you learned writing Melabeth that you’ll apply to the sequel?
Shorter chapters, and avoid using the word, “said.” Its better when you use descriptive words instead.
What advice would you give aspiring authors?
Three things. First… write. Second, get a group of your peers together and let them read every chapter you write. They encourage, give you ideas, and bug you, “Are you done with the next chapter?” By the way that’s a good sign, because they are really into your story. Third and final thing, “storyboard.” I love detail and intrigue, and you can always tell when a writer doesn’t storyboard.
That wraps up our interview with E.B. Hood, follow him on Facebook!
New Melabeth art below by Dan Olwell