Growing up, my absolute favorite series on television was Dark Shadows. Having been born the year it debuted, I didn’t see it in its original glory. I unearthed it ten years later when it went into syndication on WTBS. It aired at 10:00 pm, Central – which also happened to be my bedtime. But my horror show loving dad had put a TV in my room and every night, I’d bid the fam goodnight, shut my door and secretly turned on Dark Shadows.
I adored the melodramatic Gothic goodness, the unrequited love, time travel, vampires, witches, werewolves, and ghosts. My favorite part of the series was when Victoria Winters traveled back in time to the 1700s where she got unwittingly caught up in the love triangle between Barnabas Collins, Josette DuPre, and Angelique Bouchard.
The wonderful foggy cemetery scenes, dramatic music, long dresses, coiffed hair, wolf’s head canes and greatcoats beckoned my romantic nature like a siren song. Even as a 10 year old, I sided with the plight of the villainess, Angelique, who also happened to be a powerful witch. After all, Barnabas had toyed with her affections. Don’t we all wish we could hex a trifling man once in awhile?
Because Angelique was portrayed as such a villain on the show, I (at that tender age of 10) began writing Dark Shadows fan fiction, featuring Angelique as the heroine. And, I gave her a sidekick gal pal named Gwendolyn Wyse. (If you’ve read the third book in my Phantom Lovers series, Watchkeeper, you’ll recognize Gwen’s name.) Reverend Trask, Collinsport witch hunter extraordinaire, and his protégé, (a character of my own making) Geoffrey Static, became my villains who suffered taunting only a 10 year old could dream up (Rev. Trash lol) and the occasional cauldron-induced curse rife with eye of newt and wing of bat.
I enlisted the help of my best friend, Karen Murphy Merrigan, and together we illustrated and wrote pages and pages of Dark Shadows stories featuring our witchy heroines. We even were given permission by our favorite teacher, Mrs. Hudson, to put on a Dark Shadows themed play in which I (of course!) played the part of Angelique.
Fast-forward forty years… (just like time travel on Dark Shadows!) and I discover, Lara Parker, the lovely actress who played Angelique in the original series on Facebook. And to my delight, I learn that she has written several Dark Shadows books. After visiting her website, I learned she’d be in Memphis signing her latest book, Wolf Moon Rising.
I most definitely had a fangirl moment when I got the opportunity to meet her and show her my childhood Dark Shadows fan fiction.
Have you ever met your favorite actor, actress, or author? Or someone who inspired you when you were a child?
Comment on my post to be included in a drawing for a free download of Watchkeeper and to be entered in the grand prize giveaway, a Kindle Fire HD 7 Tablet!
Meeting your favorite author or actress is such a treat. So is taking away a signed book, or two, or ten!
This month we’re celebrating our Romance Readers Luncheon, where there’ll be several authors hosting tables, greeting fans, and signing books, by giving away books and other goodies, including the grand prize of a Kindle Fire HD 7" Tablet. To win the tablet, be sure to comment throughout the month. On September 30, we'll draw from everyone who commented (exception: Southern Magic members and international commenters are ineligible - sorry) and announce the grand prize winner.
If you wish to attend the luncheon, be sure to register and pay before October 27 at www.southernmagic.org/luncheon/html.
When: November 2, 2013, Saturday, 11 a.m.
Where: Harbert Center in downtown Birmingham, AL (free parking)
Who: The keynote speaker is NYT bestselling author Jeaniene Frost! The welcome speaker is NYT bestselling author Christy Reece who also writes as Ella Grace.
Why: We’ll be giving away lots of free books, and you’ll have opportunities to take home a basket full or more. Plus you’ll have a wonderful lunch with a published author. The list of authors can be found at www.southernmagic.org.
Good luck, everyone!