Did you hear? Well, did you?
Let me tell you, in case you didn’t. Xan, also known as @CrookedFang, from Twitter, is about to be published! Yes, his very first novel is due out in August of 2012. Not too far off if you think of it.
His writer, Carrie Clevenger, is a brilliant woman. She hatched a plan not too long ago and it’s all coming to fruition. Xan is finally getting his story, and I’ll just say this: he’s not your typical vampire. No, Xan is quite different. In fact, the reason Carrie and I became friends is a direct result of Xan and how atypical he is. Today, Carrie is one of my closest friends. I’m proud to know her.
How is Xan different? For one thing, he’s not interested in typical vampy things. He’s not off hunting in the night, feeding off society, or seducing strong willed heroines. He’s a bassist and he’s got a band. He’d really be quite happy just hanging out, plucking on his bass guitar and sipping on a bottle of Jack. Toss in a cute chica, and he’s all set.
In fact… Xan is so normal, you tend to forget he’s a Vampire. Anyone that has read Xan’s blog or hung out on Twitter with him knows this. I know it on a deeper level.
For over two years now, Xan and I have been friends. Now, before you roll your eyes at me or start to form opinions on my state of mind, let me explain it to you. I mentioned Xan in my last blog post that covered writing, fictional characters, and Twitter. I talked about what he was like when I first got to know him. He’s very different now than he was then. Before, he was quiet and reserved. And although he responded differently to me than he had to others, he also didn’t quite know what to make of me. To be honest, neither did Carrie. At one time she had dubbed me “The Vampire Den Mother.” I have to say, it was very exciting, talking to a ”real live” fictional Vampire. Come on, wouldn’t you be excited?
Never mind the fact that Xan is just cooler-than-cool and hotter-than-hot!
A lot has changed for Xan in the past three years. He’s evolved, and with that, his story is nothing like what was originally planned for him. If you had told Carrie three years ago that this is where Xan would be and this is what would be happening, she would have said you were nuts. Xan is alive and strong in her mind, and as a result of that, he’s gotten his way. What is it that has made Xan capture my heart and imagination? I suppose it’s how real and true his heart is. He’s a genuinely nice guy. Although he’s struggled at times with balancing his Vampire nature with his human side, his integrity wins out, time and again.
Xan is a regular guy with a not-so-regular personality. He represents the bad boy we all love to chase, as well as the heart-felt romantic we’ve always wished for. He’s low maintenance and cannot stand to be nagged by a woman. Still a typical male in every way, but way cooler. How can you not fall in love? It’s damn hard to resist his humor, his charm and his inherent sweetness. I know I can’t, and I’d never want to even try.
Like I mentioned above, give Xan a bottle of Jack, his bass guitar, and let’s not forget a cigarette, too. He’s content to just hang in the bar area of Pale Rider, where he lives and plays with his band.
Close your eyes for me. Can you picture him? He’s leaning against one of the back walls in the shadows of the bar. He’s six feet, five inches tall, and lean, though not too lean. Long black hair, grey eyes, and yeah, fangs, though he won’t flash them all that often…Fangs! (Just sayin’, folks.)
Perfectly at ease with his electric blue bass, “Sasha,” at his side, the faint glow of his cigarette barely illuminates his face with each pull he takes.
This is where I find him tonight. Xan and I talk quite often, he’s expecting me tonight and knows that I have some questions for him. I’ve decided I’d share our conversation with you.
WookiesGirl: *Enters in the back door of Pale Rider.* Hey there.
Xan : Ha, you found the place.
WookiesGirl: Of course. I think I need a hug or something…
Xan: Something huh?
WookiesGirl: Haha. Yes, of course.
Xan: C'mere girl.
WookiesGirl: *tackles you with a hug*
Xan: How you been? Heard you're all wanting to ask me questions. Mm you smell nice too.
WookiesGirl: Thanks. Yes, I do have questions. I had a crazy idea and your writer agreed. So, here we are. Plus it’s a chance to gush in print about how wonderful I think you are.
Xan: Cool, well I'm all yours baby.
WookiesGirl: Yes. This, I do know. Table?
Xan: Sure. I got a whiskey shot set-up at my usual table. Feeling strong?
WookiesGirl: Always… Either that or I'll get all glossy eyed and the interview will be forgotten in favor of other activities...*wink*
Xan: Hmm. Alright then. Works both ways for me!
WookiesGirl: Hehe... Me too. Alright so. I've got some questions and we'll just go one at a time if that’s cool. Yes?
Xan: Yeah I think I'm ready. Just let me know when you're recording. I'll clear my throat with some booze.
WookiesGirl: Take a sip now... I'll take notes as we go.
Xan: You look good tonight.
WookiesGirl: Aw…You think? Thanks sweetie.
Xan: Yeah you always do, even in those cute feetie PJs you do. Ha.
WookiesGirl: Haha... and... You always look good, in my opinion. Got me all smiley now.
Xan: Thanks, I just get dressed.
WookiesGirl: Ha. Okay, let's do this so we can have some you and me off the record time.
Xan: Rock 'n' roll.
WookiesGirl: Okay so... the book. Do you end up being in the spotlight with the band? How do you feel about that?
Xan: I think Charlie needs to up my whiskey rationing. I hate the spotlight. All those people looking at me. It's intimidating as fuck.
WookiesGirl: The whiskey helps I am sure. You prefer being in the background then?
Xan: I'm not really leadership material. I do best when given a job and am left alone to take care of it. In the band, I handle a lot of the business, including any external bookings because we have to be careful where we play. I like bass. It's a nice easy job, and I still get to do what I love to do, and that's play music.
WookiesGirl: In a way having your story written, puts you directly in the spotlight.
Xan: The book is from my point of view, sure. But I'd say the other people in it really make the story. I just kind of get myself in trouble a lot.
WookiesGirl: Haha. Yes, that you do, Xan. If Charlie won't up your whiskey rationing then I'll just have to bring you some, too. So, you said you handle the bookings? It makes me wonder how you balance being a vampire and yet having to be in the public eye with the band.
Xan: Oooh, that's a hard call. I generally play it off as fake, or a gimmick. Since my band is called Crooked Fang, it works well enough. My friends think I'm just some slacker that hates daylight and parties all night. Man, if they only knew the truth huh?
WookiesGirl: No kidding.
Xan: I still do stuff during the day, just stay in the shade.
WookiesGirl: Yes.. You and I figured that out a while ago. Rainy days work really well.
Xan: Still risky because the sun can peek out at really inopportune times. Heh.
WookiesGirl: Good thing my back porch provides ample coverage. Hey, ya know what’s funny? These questions I am asking you. I already know what your answers for many of them will be, but your fans don't so I figure, it’s cool to share with them the parts of you I get to see.
Xan: Fans? I don't have fans. I have people that are bored enough to read my shit.
WookiesGirl: Oh honey.. You have fans. Trust me.
Xan: ...I'll take your word for it.
WookiesGirl: Pfft.. Everyone loves you Xan. In fact, @divine_pk told me last night that she officially LOVES you.
Xan: Loves me? We haven't even gone on a second date!
WookiesGirl: There was a first date? Somethin’ you need to tell me?
Xan: ...No. [Shifts eyes]
WookiesGirl: Mmhmm… I see. Ahem… Okay, take another drink because you may not like this next question. Tell me about your sire please?
Xan: Hmm. She was a bitch? I mean when you see a hot girl at a bar and you hang out, only to wake up dead, that kind of fucks with you. To make matters worse, she was a little screwy in the brains. Turns out she's a Roman vampire, but she wanted all the other Roman vampires to be purebred, whatever the fuck that means. She exterminated all the ones she didn't make over the course of a few hundred years, or that's what she told me. [Shrugs] I just thought her ass looked good in red leather.
WookiesGirl: Haha. Fair enough. Do you ever see her now?
Xan: No. I got fed up with her six years ago and left. Surprisingly, she let me go. I don't know where she is anymore. She isn't at the old place. Maybe she just finally self-destructed.
WookiesGirl: Probably for the best I think.
Xan: Yeah, it is. She's a psycho in her finer form.
WookiesGirl: From what I remember knowing about her, I would totally agree with that assessment. So who is Jack?
Xan: Jack Pearson?
Xan: Jack, or Jackie-boy, as I like to call him is head of the Nesferata vampires. He runs a black-market operation he calls the Core. I have no idea what kind of fruit it was before it rotted. [laughs] He's big tattooed-and-pierced motherfucker with a Creole accent and a penchant for treating women like property.
WookiesGirl: Sounds like some bikers I know. Ha!
Xan: From what I heard, he comes from the jungles where they do a ritual hunt to create new Nesferata, on religious grounds, of course. It's a weird system, but they get away with it. They are the only kind permitted to steal vampire blood.
WookiesGirl: WOW. So they are vampires too? But not the same as you, you said Nesferata? What does that mean?
Xan: Nesferata are sort of vampires, but they're still alive. So they're different. Technically they are dead and yet very much alive. It’s an interesting twist I suppose.
WookiesGirl: Interesting. Maybe we can explore that further another time.
Xan: Yeah. Best I can describe is I'm something else. Not alive, not dead, just something else.
WookiesGirl: I suppose it depends on who you ask. You're special. That's how I see you anyway. Always have.
Xan: [smirk] Thanks babe.
WookiesGirl: You know I love ya. So, tell me about Nin?
Xan: Nin...in this book I meet a woman that has it out for me. I won't go into specifics, but I will say that I didn't know there were Nesferata women. Jack's disrespect for the females won't allow it, but then again, she exists, so there's that. She comes in and helps me out a little I guess. Depends on what your definition of 'help' is. [laughs]
WookiesGirl: Haha. Helps you out? Hmm, but if she is Nesferata, based on what I know of you, you don't much like them. What makes her different?
Xan: She has a nice rack?
WookiesGirl: Hahaha! So do I but that's beside the point.. *wink*
Xan: No seriously. I end up meeting her fist-first. From her angle [rubs jaw] Ow.
WookiesGirl: Ah yes. Yet you go back for more. Why is that? Notice I'm not letting you off the hook on this one.
Xan: We're looking for the same thing and she keeps getting in my goddamned way.
WookiesGirl: Damn women!
Xan: You said it, not me. [Winks]
WookiesGirl: Well, I set myself apart I suppose. I think I'm the only female/human you tolerate for longer than 5 minutes.
Xan: You and Sasha, yeah.
WookiesGirl: I'll take that. Alright so, let’s see. Ah, yes. How do you manage feeding? I mean you've got a lot of groupies; do you just take your pick?
Xan: The care and feeding of a vampire? …I mean yes. I just borrow a little from here and there. Sometimes I vamp out unexpectedly and take more. Twenty seconds is bad for drinking. I usually do about ten-to-twelve.
WookiesGirl: Ha… Well, I mean, I know what you are and I'm always willing to supply, but most people don't know. How do you handle that?
Xan: If I'm bad and in public I'll take somebody in the bathroom. Nin makes fun of me for doing this in the story, but hey, it works.
WookiesGirl: You can't exactly start sucking on necks in the open. Although, I suppose in a dark bar it might just look like a hot and heavy session in a corner.
Xan: Sometimes yeah. Or I'll take from a hallway commitment. That's what I call the girls I like, but not quite crazy enough to take them upstairs to my room. But most vampires have a passive ability to stick victims in a trance. I think it’s called thrall.
WookiesGirl: Can you do that?
Xan: Yeah. It just comes naturally. It's not really something I can turn off.
WookiesGirl: Hmm… I don't think it's…Well… Have you used that on me? I'm gonna say no. Yeah, never mind, don’t answer that. I don’t think I want to know. Heh.
WookiesGirl: Why don’t you take them up to your room?
Xan: Hmm, why don't you take every man to your house? I mean it's like that. I really need to be into you (no pun intended) to trust you around my things, you know?
WookiesGirl: Yeah I get that. Sometimes it’s just a need and sometimes it’s a NEED and then some…
Xan: It's complicated.
WookiesGirl: Most things are.
Xan: I hate complications.
WookiesGirl: *shrug* Part of life.
Xan: I like it nice and easy. I mean, I'm easy. It's all easy. It can be easy, just people are full of drama sometimes. I don't want to invite that into my life more than necessary.
WookiesGirl: I agree. Sometimes shit’s unavoidable though.
Xan: [laughs] Tell me about it, especially in my life. I'm a shit's unavoidable-magnet.
WookiesGirl: Me too! Okay, so you said drinking for 20 seconds is bad. What happens? I mean obviously you can take a life right? Has that happened to you?
Xan: What do you think?
WookiesGirl: I think maybe, yes.
Xan: I used to do more than that though. Gained a slight reputation as somebody those little unwanted bastard vampires should look out for. Those I took out in droves. My sire was all about the nobility of our kind. It still gets me jobs, but I'm mostly retired from the extermination business.
WookiesGirl: Ah yes. I have to say I'm relieved that you're not as involved in that anymore.
Xan: I didn't like what I was turning into.
WookiesGirl: It hardened you.
Xan: A lot. I don't have much respect for my kind these days, probably partly because of that. But I've seen the living do some fucked-up shit too that makes me look downright cuddly at my worst moments.
WookiesGirl: Heh. Yeah, that is for damn sure. If I had to pick between some of the people I've crossed paths with? I'd choose you. Hands down. Every time. Good and bad exist in any race... or species, I suppose.
Xan: Definitely. But I'm not exactly friendly either. I don't really like socializing much. I have to because of my band, but I'm still a private person. If you came into Pale Rider I wouldn't really look very approachable. I mean if I didn't know you already.
WookiesGirl: Right, of course, unless they are like me. I'll approach anyone, for the most part, as you well know.
Xan: You're probably the most extroverted person I know aside from Serv.
WookiesGirl: You say that like it’s a bad thing.
Xan: I was meant to meet you. We'll leave it at that.
WookiesGirl: Agreed. We're almost done… just a few more questions. Tell me what you fear?
Xan: I guess I fear a few things. There's little things like spiders. I hate spiders. Then, there's big things like, worry for the future. I fear change, and I know eventually it'll come in a major way.
WookiesGirl: I think we all fear change, to one degree or another. Life is just life. Wonderful and scary, and a pain in the ass. Oh, and I hate spiders too.
Xan: Hairy little eight-legged bastards. Ick.
WookiesGirl: Yes GROSS. What about the future worries you?
Xan: Shit, the future in general. I'm not going to die anytime soon. Everything is just going on without me and here I am stuck in time, just like I was in 1985. My best friend Scott is fifty-one. He used to be younger than me. I think you can see where I'm going with this. It's not me, it's the rest of the world. I'm just in a fucking vacuum.
WookiesGirl: Yes, I understand. I don't like to look at it too closely though, so let’s move on from that subject. What about dreams, Xan? What are your dreams?
Xan: The difference for you is you're changing right along with the rest of the world.
WookiesGirl: Yes and sometimes I think I'd rather not. But that’s a different discussion all together. *smile*
Xan: Dreams? You mean future aspirations, or like when I sleep?
WookiesGirl: Future aspirations, and sleeping ones too, I suppose.
Xan: I don't dream often. When I do, they aren't good ones. Being reminded of life before this is painful. As far as future aspirations...here is where I'm happy, but I'll have to move on before long. I look like I'm twenty-seven, and ten years from now I'll look the same. People start questioning that eventually. I'll have to pull up roots and move someplace else and start over to live another life for a little while again, then move on. Rinse and repeat.
WookiesGirl: Hmm. I think that sucks. It's part of it all though, the life you live now.
Xan: Part of the fun of being immortal.
WookiesGirl: I'll have to get a bigger house. You can just come and live with me.
Xan: Probably would be safer.
WookiesGirl: Yep. I'd protect you. Fuck everyone else. Haha. Okay, let’s talk about Twitter.
WookiesGirl: You've got quite the following. Everyone loves you. How do you feel about all of that?
Xan: Twitter is one of the coolest things out there. It's a soapbox, a megaphone, or a great big chat-room. Admittedly, I enjoy getting to know people on it.
WookiesGirl: It’s a playground.
Xan: Yeah, there you go. It's a hotbed of links, passive aggressive vague statements, jokes, feelings, and well when you follow enough people, it must be kind of what being God must feel like, just kicking back and reading all of these random thoughts, hopes and dreams as they flow by.
WookiesGirl: Don't forget the drama. And personally, I'm very glad you landed on twitter, else we'd not have met.
Xan: And the drama. It has caused a great deal of headaches during the time I've been on there.
WookiesGirl: For both of us.
Xan: Figuratively of course. I don't get headaches anymore. And yeah I met you on there, so it's been worth it.
WookiesGirl: Aw. Yes, totally worth it. Okay, last few questions. Let's talk about music for a minute. Crooked Fang being a cover band, what sort of songs are your favorites to play?
Xan: We play a variety of shit really. Sometimes we'll take requests. Serv has a range like I've never heard before and he knows about a zillion songs.
WookiesGirl: But, what are your favorites?
Xan: My favorites? As in what I like to play or my favorites in general?
WookiesGirl: Both I guess. You guys must play some that you love because they are your favorites in general.
Xan: Well yes and no. I'm into shit like Danzig, Type O Negative, Concrete Blonde and stuff. Serv likes to sing Def Leopard, Poison, Chevelle and other rock-type stuff.
WookiesGirl: Ahh. Does the band ever play the stuff you love?
Xan: Yeah, but I have to sing usually so I don't push the issue. I like all kinds of music, and we've done a full range from 50s doo-wop to Green Day.
WookiesGirl: Okay, and by the way, I love your singing. Okay, last question. You've got this new music thing going on. Sort of like a soundtrack for your books. Tell me about that?
Xan: Yeah, it's something Carrie Clevenger always wanted and somehow managed to get going. What can I say? It's music. I love music, so it works well I think.
WookiesGirl: I agree. I personally, am very excited. It’s good right, this new way to have your fans/readers hear you? They get to know you more. Like a little bonus piece of Crooked Fang to add to the world we live in.
WookiesGirl: She's a pretty smart lady. The guy she is working with is pretty creative and I see so many good things coming as a result of the collaboration. I see good things for you too.
Xan: It's been a lot of fun so far.
WookiesGirl: Well hell, if you can't have fun, what's the damn point then, right? So that’s it. The interview is over. We can now be officially off the record. You have anything else to say before I put my pen down?
Xan: I just want to thank everybody that's read, tweeted about, posted on Facebook about, or blogged about Crooked Fang. None of this would have been possible without them. I hope to live up to their expectations. Seriously people, thanks. I'm at a loss to tell you how much your emails and comments and friendship means to me.
WookiesGirl: Wonderful. Simply wonderful! Oh wait.. Damn, I do have one more question.
WookiesGirl: Um... what do you think about my sparkly tank top? Haha.
Xan: [Laughs] VERY eye-catching. I found myself distracted. [Grin]
WookiesGirl: Hmm... Were you now? I do like being a distraction.
Xan: At least you're the one that sparkles. [Laughs]
WookiesGirl: Oh that’s for damn sure! Plus, you can bite me without killing me… sort of… Erm… you know what I mean.
I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I loved writing it.
Look for more things from my friend, Xan, coming soon. And please check out his Facebook page.
He's got a collaboration piece written with Nerine Dorman called "Just my Blood Type." It's a free download via a link on GoodReads. You can get it here: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/11810756-just-my-blood-type
Look for another collaboration piece between Carrie and Nerine, featuring Xan, coming soon.
Take care, lovelies.