I got this interesting email from my pal Cap’n Crusty yesterday:
Just what is it that (some) women find so alluring about vampires? Come on, these are blood-sucking corpses who, if they don’t kill their victims right off, will either enslave a them or, if they’re “lucky”, turn them into a similar creature, doomed to wander the night forever, cower in a coffin from the daylight, and even worse, condemn one to an eternity without garlic!!!!!!
My answer? It’s all about forbidden love.
We are complex creatures and nothing speaks to that so much as our predilections and varying appetites when it comes to sex. I learned a lot during my years of teaching erotic writing workshops for women (and only one for men). The study of how men differ from women–in all ways–is mandatory for any fiction writer, especially when it comes to bedroom scenes.
In part, what I learned from leading those weekend workshops was this: Women want to have deeply significant sex with the man they love in dangerous, public places, and men want to have a joyful romp with no strings attached in their own beds.
Power is an aphrodisiac to women. So is the forbidden. Vampirism is both. Sometimes women just succumb to the passion, eschewing the consequences, and therein lies the attraction.
We go to bed at night, open a book and leap into the skin of the characters we’re reading about, living vicariously through their mistakes and missteps, wishing we could be them, glad we’re not. What young girl wouldn’t want the singular attentions of a thousand-year-old, worldly man, no matter how dangerous? Don’t we all remember wanting to date the cool guy at school, especially if he was a few years older? Well, take that to the extreme. Very cool (cold, actually), much older. Very flattering.