Author Spotlight with Bertena Varney




K.S.  Hello and welcome to the blog. I am very excited to have you here. Why don’t we start off with a small introduction? Tell us a little about yourself. 

Well, I am a single mother from Kentucky who decided to take her life long interests in vampires and make an academic career out of it. I used classes form graduate school and tailored them to be around vampire topics as much as I could. What I couldn’t do with that I studied on my own. I love pop culture and absolutely love trivia . I especially like the I love the 80’s shows on VH1. LOL. So basically I am a big nerd.

I am a sociologist, criminologist and educator by trade. I have master’s degrees in those areas and love going to school. I love teaching, doing lectures, and traveling.
What else about me? Well I am a workaholic and love to read ;)

K.S.  Any interesting writing quirks or stories you would like to share with my readers?
Well I do write as I think.. in lists and corresponding numbers. This OCD made it very hard for me to write this book. I tended to get caught up in the outline more than the writing as well. If you look, the book can be used as a text book which is an idea that I am toying around with. 


K.S.  When did you realize you wanted to be a writer? What sparked the desire to pen your first novel?

Well, I didn’t really say to myself that I wanted to be a writer. I enjoy teaching and researching and that was the next logical step in the academic world. I decided to write this first book when I realized all the work that I put into and realized that it would be a great resource for authors and vampire fans. It was fun to do so why not share it.

K.S.  What genre do you write?

I write non fiction vampire articles and books. I write for Examiner.com and the Vampire and True Blood Examiner and I love it.


K.S.  What would you say has inspired you most in your writing career? Or, who is your favorite author and why?

I really don’t have a favorite author. The only books that I have bought when they were released were the Harry Potter series and the Sookie Stackhouse series.

No one has really inspired me. I don’t tend to look at the author just like I don’t look at the actors’ real life. I immerse myself in the characters and the world that they live in.

I just decided to take my notes and put them into what I was using to help me research and publish it. I am not a trained writer and actually hated writing until I got to write about vampires. But, I have to do it when I am in the mood. That must be a scoria thing.


K.S.  What does your family think of your writing?

Most of my my family.. or extended family like parents and grandparents either don’t know or think that it’s all “evil” . My brother and his wife don’t really understand it and think I am weird. But, my brother told me he bought my book to support me but he would never read it.  I am very appreciative of this. It does mean a lot for him to do this. I sent my book to my parents and my mom makes my dad keep it outside the house but there is a longer story to that too.

My son who is in college asked for copies to give his friends and thinks I am really cool. He always liked his mom being a little different than the other moms. My six year old nephew thinks I am weird but he just says in a patronizing cute way, “ I love my Aunt Tena anyway” and ran and hid a book in his room so his parents wouldn’t find it. He marked the chapter that says Vampire and Children and promised that that is all he would read so he wouldn’t have nightmares. My sister in law are terrified of scary movies especially vampires.

As I have said since I was a kid I never felt like I fit in with my family.

K.S.  What was one of the most surprising things you learned while creating your book/s?

I have always read for enjoyment and for information not to compare what format is better or if this is perfect or the layout is perfect. If someone is going to read my books and complain about that oh well then they miss the whole point of my book.

 If they read my books (like all have so far) and love the information, essays, and links then that is why I wrote not to worry about anything but the vampire within the book. The vampire and information is the reason for the bookJ


K.S.  What inspires you?

My boyfriend. Simply put. I wouldn’t have completed this if it wasn’t for him. He kept encouraging me to finish this book after I gave up so many times. He finally almost threatened me in a loving way to get it done.

K.S.  Can you tell us a little about any of your novels?

Lure of the Vampire is a simple and fast reference book for any vampire writer or fan. There are links to my favorite young adult and adult literature, lists of movies, television shows, interviews with real vampires as well as with Hugo Pecos who created this cool alternative world called the Federation of Vampires and Zombie Association.

There are essays from myself and a few of my writing friends. There are links and information on history of the vampire as well as mythology.

It is great for both guys and girls and the information is not geared at one type of vampire. In the Lure of the Vampire you will find the vampire that is meant for you.

K.S.  Where can we buy your novel?

Right now Amazon and soon it will be available on Kindle and Nook. I am selling a lot at fairs, conventions, 
and book signings. For a schedule of where I will be either friend me on Facebook or visit my website at http://www.bertenavarney.com


K.S.  Do you have a website, fan site, or Blog that we can visit?

I have lots. My other partime job is social media promotion so I love the internet

Twitter @tenavarney

Vampire  Newsletter to help everyone keep up with vampire news- http://eepurl.com/exZYQ


K.S.  Do you have any closing advice to aspiring writers?

Think about why you are writing. Is it for fun, as a career, as a school paper, etc. I think I have learned that I get too stressed out over the how and why of putting it together than realizing that all that matters if the audience I am writing for likes it.

There are thousands of books and when someone picks up your book- do they enjoy it? If  the answer is yes then good. It doesn’t matter if it’s a top seller, it’s if you are happy with your book.




Lure of the Vampire: A Pop Culture Reference Book of Lists, Websites and Very Personal Essays 

By Bertena Varney, M.A.
Paperback: 176 pages
Also available as an ebook
Publisher: Search for the Lure
Published: June 22, 2011
ISBN-10: 0615501567
ISBN-13: 978-0615501567

Lure of the Vampire is a pop culture reference book that begins with history and mythology and ends with modern living vampires. The author has provided "fun" lists like the Powers of Dracula, Real Live Vampire Murders, Television Shows and African Americans who have Played Vampires. There are also websites in each section that show the most popular vampire books and even children's shows and books. But, there is a personal twist when it comes to Lure of the Vampire. The author has provided personal essays from national and international vampire authors as well as her own. They range from a personal look at vampires in mythology to the romantic lust filled vampire. There are also interviews with various groups and individuals involved in the vampire community. Lure of the Vampire: A Pop Culture Refence Book of Lists, Websites, and "Very Telling" Personal Essays is a perfect quick to grab reference book for the vampire fan or author. It is concise enough to assist you in finding links to what you are looking for without our being too cumbersome and confusing.

Lure of the Vampire contains essays from authors: Denise Verrico - David MacDowell Blue - Charles E. Butler - C.J. Ellisson – BittenTwice – Elizabeth Loraine
Interviews with: Vampiric Council of New England, Vlad the Gothic Vampire Magician , Audrey Koogler, Vampire Priestess , and Hugo Pecos, creator of The Federal Vampire and Zombie Agency

Lure of the Vampire is great for any writer who would like to find fun facts to give their vampires in their story. For example, what powers have vampires in mythology possessed or the first literary vampires? There’s a section for that. 

What if you are a vampire fan who is looking for new YA or adult authors-  there is a section with titles, authors and their websites.

What about vampire games? There’s a section for that too.

Sections include: Mythology, History, Literature, Movies, Television, Recreation, Children’s Vampires, On the Web, Education, and Real Life Vampires. There are lists, websites, essays, and interviews included in throughout the book.

Lure of the Vampire: A Pop Culture Reference Book of Lists, Websites, and "Very Telling" Personal Essays is a perfect quick to grab reference book for the vampire fan or author. It's concise enough to assist you in finding links to what you are looking for without our being too cumbersome and confusing.

You can buy Lure of the Vampire at Amazon.com in print here- http://amzn.to/nwifDw.
Ebooks will be coming to Kindle, Nook and Smashwords soon.

Comments

Bertena Varney said…
Thanks Katie for having me today. I really enjoyed the interview and can't wait to talk to your followers:)
Sapphyria said…
I'm here to support Bertena and Katie!!

Please don't enter me--I've read, reviewed, and blogged about this masterpiece already. :)

Sapphyria
Denise Verrico said…
Keep on plugging, Bertena!