A Prepublished Novel in the Process of Revisions and Rewrites

Monday, October 13, 2008

Please welcome Michele Flagg, author of Retribution! Book I, The Champion Chronicles.

Hi Dayana! Thanks for inviting me as a guest blogger. I’m a Black Rose author with The Wild Rose Press. My first series, The Champion Chronicles includes Book 1: Retribution! and Book 2: Consequences. Book 3: Inheritance is still wrapping up. Please visit my web site, www.Mflagg-author.com to learn more. Since it is paranormal peak season, I’ll offer some words about “good” vampires who leave a lasting impression. So it’s back to the 1960s. We can certainly time-travel, right? If you weren’t around then, think of this as a previous life experience!

I went to a strict, all-girls Catholic high school. Imagine the surprise when one of our assignments was Bram Stoker’s Dracula. Required reading!? Good literature aside, it’s a demon! I’ll be saying Hail Marys until 1970! Well, Stoker’s words sent chills down my spine. So much so that I closed the book at page 10 with my heart racing and took a failing grade. Unthinkable if you know me, but true!

A year later, enter Barnabas Collins on Dark Shadows. That vamp had mystery, as well as a bit of good in him. Hmmm… After conning my sister Linda into taking me and my best friend into Manhattan, we met the actor who played him, not once but quite a few times. Maybe that’s where the fascination with good vampires starts.

During a particular low point in my life, I stood in a bookstore searching for something to take me away from hideous reality. A woman approached, saying “Read any Anne Rice?” A blank stare and a slow shake of my head was the answer. She thrust a book in my hand, which was over a decade old, whispering, “Trust me…it’s really good.” While watching my children swim like crazy fish in the pool, I devoured Interview with a Vampire. Thank goodness for the pizza delivery man!

Louis intrigued me. That vamp had passion, mystery, and sorrowful good in him. Did the desire to create my own vampire begin here? Nope. Keep reading.

In 1999, my teenage son introduced me to another vampire. Wait a minute? Don’t vamps lose their souls? Zoom to 2005. Laboring through completing a second masters in two years while teaching full-time, I vowed that as soon as this was over, I’d do something different. Call it a whim, but I decided to create my own vampire…and maybe I’d redeem him, just for the heck of it!

My son and I discussed vampire lore. “Write it, Mom,” he said. Okay, I thought, maybe ten pages of run-on sentences. But I had my own surreal drama churning. Linda listened to depressed ramblings as only a loving sister would. “Forget it all…just write,” she said. I did. My daughter echoed the mantra. I got so involved with my paranormal love story that I didn’t even realize I’d given my parents’ names to my main characters. Embarrassing, but totally true! Other people from my life morphed onto the pages. When I stopped, 120,000 words filled a file on my laptop entitled, Retribution!

Michael Malone, my good vampire, is mystically enhanced (Hey…it’s my paranormal world and I can do what I want). He reclaimed his soul in 1890. In 1990, the vampire sees a girl with her father just before dawn. Years later, he realizes that she is his salvation. But Alana’s now a Guardian of Souls who destroys demons that lurk in the night. To further complicate Michael’s undead life, he has fathered a human son, tricked by a dark seer. The newborn is taken away from Michael and raised in safety. Alana turns 21, and Michael cannot contain love for her anymore. He sleeps with the innocent woman, who breaks a timeless vow. But more importantly, the beast within Michael resurfaces. They never speak again until… Michael’s road to redemption turns bumpy. His son is made to pay for the sins of the father. Lukas, at 13, hunts his undead parent. Alana moves to Portofino. Michael makes a deal with Evil on earth to save Lukas. He calculates revenge. When vengeance is served, Michael is thrown into the depths of near-insanity and begins to weave a tale of redemption with the angel Helena. Only Alana can save him. Thus, Retribution! begins.

Why did I write about a vampire? It’s fun! The creation of a paranormal world offers plenty of wiggle room for interesting characters and supernatural twists rooted in reality. Of course, I can also guarantee the happy ending. Book 2: Consequences takes up Michael’s quest for redemption. Book 3: Inheritance reveals Lukas’s destiny. I love a “good” vampire story. Let’s hear it for the vamps that take us out of this world and into theirs!

I am eternally grateful to my editor, Callie Lynn Wolfe, for her guidance and belief in this new writer, and to The Wild Rose Press, for allowing me the chance to share my stories.

So if you know a “good” vamp, let’s hear from you! Leave a comment and it may entitle you to a Wild Rose Gift Certificate, which you can use now—or for the release of Retribution! The Champion Book Chronicles: Book 1. I know…shameless self promotion! Thanks again for having me, Dayana.

It’s been an interesting new “first” for me!

Mickey Flagg


  1. Congrats on the book, Mickey! I can't wait to read it!


  2. Excellent post! I agree. It's your story. Do what you want. Especially in the way of enhancements. Isn't writing paranormal fantastic for that reason? ;) Skhye

  3. Great story teaser. Can't wait to read the series--and Vampires aren't in my usual reading matter! I admire anyone who does world building--great imagination Michele!

  4. OMG! I haven't heard Dark Shadows mentioned in years. Barnabus was the sexiest man on t.v. back then.! Thanks for posting. Going to have to check the story out! Good Luck, Michele!

  5. Hi Mickey,
    Congratulations on the book! I can't wait to read it. Your creativity shows in everything you do.
    Good Luck,
    Toni Hindie

  6. I can't wait to have the book in hand and read the real thing! I know it's been a journey for you, but one I'm sure was worth it. I am so excited for you!
    Wishing you all the best! Stephanie

  7. Good vampire? Well, it brings to mind a quote from Rice's The Vampire Lestat -- "I was a good marksman when I was a young man, a good actor on the stage. And now I am a good vampire. So much for our understanding of the word 'good.' "

    I personally like my monsters to be monsters. Some humanity is all right, some remnants of what makes mortals "moral," but ultimately these are totally different creatures, predators on a far higher scale than we. Don't you think?

    But if I understand your criteria correctly, I offer a few "good" vampires:

    Coppola's Dracula
    Bill Compton
    Eric Northman
    Most of Rice's vampires
    Drak Jr (my first toothy love, LOL)
    Michael from The Lost Boys

  8. Great post, Michele! Your story sounds fantastic.
    Good vamps? I've read so many great vampire stories, but Anne Rice's Louis sure captured my imagination, as well as Barnabas Collins. Who can forget him? Dawn Thompson also wrote a great vampire trilogy and her vampire characters were memorable.
    Long live vampire romances! Keep them coming!

  9. Mickey,
    I love your post. I'd have to say that this is not my genre, but I'm looking forward to reading your book.

  10. I love fantasy and science fiction, I have never read any stories about Vampires and you have peaked my interest. I look forward to reading your novel.

  11. Great post, Michele

    I've written [as yet, unpublished] Fantasy-bording on SciFi. Though Hollywood's vampires never really scared me, I found Barnabas Collins enthralling. I found Anne Rice's Interview with a Vampire sensual and it was my first literary endevour in the genre. Of recent, though on celluliod, the Underworld series definitely sparked new interest for me.

    I never considered writing about vamps or weres until I found out about and tried for TWRPs Got Wolf? contest back in August. I missed the deadline due to a plot point that I simply could NOT figure out in time. I also forgot the second rule of 'consumation.'

    Because of how my storyline rules developed, there just wasn't going to be any consumating! And seeing as how I re-read said contest rule at the 11th hour, mine was so fully entrenched and would have entailed too much rewrite.

    Maybe after I get the were out of my system, I will attempt a vamp!

    Thanks for sharing your time here,

    Blessings, Laura

  12. Vampires ARE fun! Right now my favorite, hands down, is Edward Cullen. I am completely caught up in the YA "Twilight" series. I also love an old vampire trilogy by Linda Lael Miller: Forever and the Night, For All Eternity, and Time Without End.

  13. I can't wait for the book to come up Micki! My favorite vampire is Angel from the "Buffy" and "Angel" tv shows. His brooding nature somewhat resonates with me.

  14. Absolutely nothing beat Dark Shadows. I thought Josette was totally beautiful. I still remember the tune her music box played.

    Elaine Cantrell

  15. Hi Mickey,
    I never dreamed 20 years ago I'd even pick up a vampire book, but have read several excellent ones in the last few years. Yours sound like winners.
    Best of luck.

  16. As the person who recognized this talent first.. and a long time ago. I can only tell you this will be so worth your time. If this book is half as great as its author you are in for an amazing time.

  17. These comments are wonderful! Let's keep them coming! I'm impressed by those who remember Barnabas! Susan and Dre, I couldn't agree with you more. Schye, what a lovely comment. I'll let you know who wins the gift certificate at the end of the month! Looking forward to reading more great comments such as these!
    Mickey Flagg

  18. Congratulations on your book! You are woman of many talents and I wish you all the best. I have never been a person interested in vampires however your blog peaked my interest. Who knows, maybe there is more to vampires than I thought.

    Johan Palacio

  19. Nice post. Your journey is coming full circle and I am so excited to get my hands on your book. After reading your post, even more so than ever! The idea of vampires conjures up such interesting feelings...a mixture of fear and excitement. It has been quite some time since I read a vampire book. One of the last was many many years ago by Poppy Z. Brite. I am looking forward to reading your book.Your talents have once again taken you on a voyage in celebration of all things creative. The world is waiting to hear from you.

    Peace and love, Jo Ann

  20. I love vampires, Michele, and your book sounds great! Some of my favorite "good" vampires are from Lynsay Sands's Argeneau series. Her vamps always make me laugh.

    I'll be sure to check out your series. :)

  21. Gee, I was sooooo stuck on watching Dark Shadows when I was growing up! I hope to write a vampire romance one day.

    Great blog. I also visited your website:)


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