Theresa Milstein in... Fangtales

Fangtales!

Sounds delicious, no?

Fangtales, edited by Berni Stevens, is the third YA anthology by Wyvern Publications, after Dragontales, published in 2009, and Mertales, published in 2010.

Fangtales visits the terrifying realms of the most popular creature ever to grace the pages of fantasy fiction. The vampire. The tales are fresh, original and scary enough to send delicious shivers down the spine of every reader. Lose yourself in the blood-soaked pages of Fangtales, where a best friend mysteriously disappears, a small child roams the woods alone at midnight, and a terrified girl seeks help when her house is surrounded by hungry vampires.


Theresa Milstein's Allured features in Fangtales, and I'm lucky enough to have her stopping by today to answer a few questions about the story - and more.

Which is the most embarrassing book, movie or TV show that you love?

Where to begin. I watch too much reality TV. I've watched LA Ink, NY Ink (I have two tattoos, maybe that's why). The Soup is one of my favorites. I'm really into cooking shows. Most are pretty normal like Top Chef and Chopped, except for Hell's Kitchen. The most embarrassing? First season of The Jersey Shore. (Should I even admit that?) By the second season, I despised myself.

Getting a good review from which author would make you freak out the most?

Just one? Okay, I can do this. J.K.RowlingLoisLowryJudyBlumeNeilGaiman.

Would you like to be one of your characters, or do you the writer torture them too much?

I do torture my characters too much to want to live their lives. Besides, what makes me able to write YA are my vivid memories of what it was like to be a child and teen. I'm not living those years again. I'm no fool.

Have you secretly chosen actors to play your main characters?

If I tell you, it's not a secret. [good point! but we really wanna know...]


I created an older Italian character, and used Fabio from a previous season of Top Chef. In my book, he's Antonio. When I saw the show where they had former Top Chef contestants, I kept getting confused why they called him Fabio.


Another time, my vampire protagonist who was based on a contestant named Alison from America's Next Top Model. (Oh no, I just admitted another embarrassing show. But I don't watch it anymore. I swear.)


Other than that, I use my own imagination or an amalgamation of two or more people, living and/or famous.

How many times did you rewrite Allured?

I don't keep track. I probably looked it over at least 10 times, maybe 20. Then I gave it to my critique partner, Aubrie Dionne. When I edited based on her suggestions, I sent it to Judy Mintz. After I edited from Judy's critique, off it went to Wyvern Publications.

Which scene(s) in Allured were most difficult to write?

The end of Allured was the most difficult to write. That's when the complete mystery is revealed. Some of it was thought and some was dialogue. I had to find a good balance.

How did you come up with the idea for Allured?

Beats me. Seriously, that's kind of the answer. I read the guidelines for submissions for Fangtales and did some research about the rules of traditional vampires in Bram Stoker's Dracula. Then I just looked at a blank page. A sentence sprang in my head, and I wrote to see where the story would take me. I write in the fog, with a vague sense of where I'm going. Sometimes I know the final destination (sort of) but I have only the foggiest (sorry) notion of how to get there.


The original lines are not far off from this final version:

"I twisted a golden curl in my usual alluring way. Guys loved it when I did that. I lowered my voice, so Reid had to lean in to hear me, his elbows propped on his knees. I locked his green eyes with my gaze."

Do you keep a journal?

No. I've tried a few times in my life, but then I lose interest. For a time, my blog felt like a journal, but I've done fewer essay-like posts since I started working full-time and returned to graduate school. I'm having a hard time squeezing in any writing.

Who was the last person that haunted you?

Nobody, thankfully. Sometimes, I'll get a whiff of a certain coffee scent, and feel like I'm in my late grandmother's kitchen. Or I might have a strong memory of someone who died out of nowhere. In those moments, it's like those people are with me.


I like to write spooky, scary, fantasy but I'm a wimp in real life. I'd like to be placed in Gryffindor, but there's no way The Sorting Hat would place me there.

Deniz, thanks for interviewing me on your blog and being a part of my Fangtales tour. I've appreciated your support ever since we became blogging buddies.

***

Thank you for being here, Theresa, and I wish you the best of luck with Allured and all your writing!
I'd like to be in Gryffindor with you!

Meanwhile, back to NaNo for me - it's helping me no end to keep up my ROW80 goals. Hope everyone else is having a good writing week.
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