We asked Wayne Josephson about Emma, vampires, and writing, and today he answers those questions. Be sure to check out his guest post featured last week for a chance to win an autographed copy of Emma and the Vampires, this month’s featured selection.
Other than Emma Woodhouse, which character did you enjoy developing to live in this new vampire filled version of Emma?
I especially enjoyed developing two characters. First, Harriet Smith, because she is as clueless as Emma that she is surrounded by gentlemen vampires. And Robert Martin, the vampire farmer who woos her. Harriet coos about Robert, “He is so strong he can lift a cow over his head, and when his hand touches mine he sends a chill up my spine!”
In vamping things up in Emma’s world where did you draw inspiration for your vampires other than Twilight?
I am a great fan of vampire comedy movies, and these have inspired me in my writing. Some of my favorites include Vampires Suck (2010), with Matt Lanter, from the producers of the Scary Movie series; Fright Night (1985) with Roddy McDowall, about a vampire who moves next door, remade in 2011 with Anton Yelchin; and Mel Brooks’ Dracula: Dead and Loving It (1995) with Leslie Neilson.
What other classics might you consider mashing up, and what monster would you introduce?
I would like to mash up Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility and Franz Kafka’s Metamorphosis. The comic possibilities are endless as Mrs. Dashwood and her daughters, Elinor and Marianne, attempt to hide their brother Gregor (who has inexplicably been transformed into a giant insect) from the wealthy gentlemen suitors who call on them. Of course, Mrs. Dashwood hopes these gentlemen will marry her daughters and spare them the hideous fate of ending up as penniless old maids.
What does a productive writing day look like for you?
My most productive time of day to write is early in the morning. I feel rested and alert, and the house is quiet. I arise about 5:30 am, make coffee, and settle into my leather recliner with my laptop. My fingers fly over the keyboard until about 7:30, when family members begin to wake up. Then I move to the living room, sit on the sofa, and continue to work until about 10:00, albeit a little less productively. Normally I write for four or five hours a day. By then, my brain has turned to mush.
What writing “quirks” do you have or would like to have?
In terms of my writing environment, I need absolute quiet. I can write only at home, sitting in my favorite chair. I am very organized and rather compulsive, and I always outline the chapters of my book ahead of time—I function best when I have a blueprint or roadmap of where I’m going. During the actual writing process, I’ll often close my eyes and visualize a scene, watching the characters conversing and interacting, then put the results down on paper.
Sometimes I wish I could allow my writing to be more spontaneous and free-flowing, but so far that hasn’t been the case and I’m probably too set in my ways to change.
Tell us about any other of your works that might interest the mashup readers?
I recently completed an ebook mashup, Pride, Prejudice and Moby Dick. When a hurricane sinks the pleasure ship carrying the ladies and gentlemen of Pride and Prejudice, they are rescued by the whaling ship Pequod, commanded by the brooding Captain Ahab. They find themselves on a hilarious voyage to the Pacific to chase the great white whale, Moby Dick. Mr. Darcy’s pride is greatly humbled as he rows a harpoon boat and shares a hammock with the cannibal Queequeg. In the end, romance wins out over the perils of whaling.
What questions might you like to have answered? Any we didn’t think to ask?