Senior Year Bites
Series: The Clanless, Book 1
J. A. Campbell
Genres: YA Urban Fantasy
Published: July 7, 2014
Untold Press www.untoldpress.com
Thanks to an innocent game of Truth or Dare, I wound up sleeping in a graveyard. Probably not the brightest thing I’ve ever done, but thanks to a couple of well-placed fangs, I’m here to tell the tale.
Vampires might stalk pop culture, but they’re just myths, right? Yeah. Not so much…
Everything seems a lot more difficult when you’re a nocturnal creature of the night, especially school. I was managing, but couldn’t keep it hidden from my friends. Steph decided that we should be cool, like superheroes, and fight crime.
I’m a vampire, not a hero. Living in a sleepy New England town, crime is a little harder to come by. At least it is until a serial killer moves into the area. He’s got the authorities stumped, but then again, the cops don’t have a teenage, blood-sucking, non-hero on their team. It doesn’t take long for me to discover the world is full of monsters. I may be one of them…but will I turn out to be the hero, or the killer everyone is looking for.
I had plans for my last year of high school. I was going to find a boyfriend, go to a few dances, and though I hadn’t told my mom yet, take some beginning paramedic courses in the spring. I wasn’t entirely sure what I wanted to do with my life– wasn’t that what college was for? I liked the idea of being a hero, like my dad, and saving lives every day. That had been the plan anyway, but a sleepover and a late-night dare had changed everything.
interview Q & A 🙂
Where did you get the idea for SYB?
Way back in the day I had a dream about a girl who got turned into a vampire her senior year of high school. While chatting with a good writing buddy on IM I shared my fun dream. We had also been discussing the concept that two writers can take the same idea and write it, but what they come up with will usually be completely different. Both of us thought my dream was cool, and wanted to test the concept, so we both wrote a thousand words or so based on my dream. They did turn out quite differently, and I ended up continuing to write until the novel was finished.
Do you plan to continue this series and if so, how many will be included?
Yes. The sequel, Summer Break Blues, is available from a different publisher in ebook format. The third, and final book, still exists only in my head but I have it on good authority that I’ll be writing it this winter.
Was there a particular reason or meaning behind SYB?
Hmm, not per-say. I did want to explore the idea of friendships, and I borrowed heavily on a friendship I had in high school.
I noticed that Meg, the main character struggled with being a “hero.” Was there something personal to her need to save ppl?
She wanted to be a hero like her father. He was a firefighter. She felt she’d lost any sort of ability to follow her dreams once she became a vampire. Turns out she just had to look at things differently.
The end was left open-ended, and while I loved the story, can you tell us hopeful romantics if Meg and Tad end up dating?
LOL, well, they do go on some dates. You’ll have to read the second book to see how that turns out.
Meg kicks serious butt! I loved her determination and vow to keeping her friends and family safe. I enjoyed the way you wove other mythical creatures into the your story. If the series continues, is it possible to see more Fey or Vampires or Elves?
More Fey, who are Elves in this world essentially, Vampires, a Werewolf, the Selkie.
Anything you’d like to add, or share with your readers about you or your characters?
Well, let’s see, I really like to write about strong friendships and not giving up on each other easily. I feel like the people you surround yourself with is very important and I tried to write some good friends for Meg. Friends I would have liked to have. Steph is totally secure with her life, well, as much as someone her age can be. She’s driven and very idealistic. Meg, she’s loyal, but really confused. Understandably. Ann is a good kid but she’s not nearly as secure in herself and doesn’t like to feel completely overshadowed. Alexander is actually fairly terrified of Meg, which is why he’s such an ass to her for a while.
If there’s anything else anyone wants to know, feel free to leave questions in the comments. I’ll swing by a few times to answer them.
“Hi, Johnny. How are you?”
“Fine. Mom tells me you’ve turned into a vampire.”
I choked. “What?”
“I can probably teach you some, but it will be different for you. Vampire society is more lethal. The Sidhe are not less dangerous, just less quick to kill. There are plenty of other things they can do to make your life miserable. Death is too easy. Vampires, well…they are killers. That’s what they do. Staying alive is a complicated dance through politics.”
Julie has been many things over the last few years, from college student, to bookstore clerk and an over the road trucker. She’s worked as a 911 dispatcher and in computer tech support, but through it all she’s been a writer and when she’s not out riding horses, she can usually be found sitting in front of her computer. She lives in Colorado with her three cats, her vampire-hunting dog Kira, her new horse and Traveler-in training, Triska, and her Irish Sailor.She is the author of many Vampire and Ghost-Hunting Dog stories and the young adult fantasy series Tales of the Travelers. She’s a member of the Horror Writers Association and the Dog Writers of America Association and the editor for Steampunk Trails fiction magazine.