I met Tracy via a writing group on facebook where we discussion the little details of marketing our books and the joys and frustrations of being an author. I’m happy to add a fellow science fiction writer to the list of authors being interviewed here on No Wasted Ink. I hope you’ll enjoy her interview as much as I have.
My name is Tracy Angelina Evans. I use the full name because many know me as Tracy, but some know me as Angelina. It’s a long, convoluted story. Besides writing, my greatest love is music and, to me, the two are really inextricably linked. My main character Cadmus Pariah, for example, was spontaneously born out of a song called ‘Deeply Lined Up’ by a band called Shriekback. Ever since I can remember, I’ve been one to have “causes.” If I am fond of something, I will do my best to persuade any and all that they should, too. My family have long contended that I should have been an Evangelical preacher because of this trait.
When and why did you begin writing?
I began writing during my first grade in school, mainly to cope with loneliness and with the bullying I endured beginning then. It was an escape into a better world for me.
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
In the early 80s, when I transitioned from writing animal-based stories, to stories revolving around human beings. My fascination was with science fiction and fantasy, and that is what I began to focus on myself.
Can you share a little about your current book with us?
The third book, of the trilogy known as ‘The Vampire Relics,’ focuses on the third and last relic to be found and utilized in an attempt to redeem those Vampires who want to return to mortality and earn a place in what many would call Heaven. That book is finished and is being edited as we speak.
The book I’m writing now, deals with the remaining Vampires on Earth, including Cadmus Pariah, who has now been raised in power to the title of Plenipotentiary of the New Hive. It centers on his struggle to recapture the emotions abused out of him for decades, and what he does to each individual who brings out said emotion. The working title for the book is called The Harming Tree, which is an actual musical instrument created by Barry Andrews, who gave me permission to use the name.
What inspired you to write this book?
I have always had a love affair with Vampires, and began to properly study their lore in the late 80s. It fascinates me that so many different cultures hold the same myths and legends about a supposedly mythical creature. My aim was to bring that together and kind of explain their genesis by way of much older teachers, often called the Elfs or Elves. The development of Cadmus Pariah and why he does what he does was a major motivator for me as well.
Do you have a specific writing style?
A friend of mine quipped that I was a Method Writer, because I delve into each character as I write them. Sometimes that can be extremely painful, considering the fates of Cadmus and Faust the Confessor. Some would call it Purple Prose, but I prefer Poetic Prose. The noun-verb-noun style that Hemingway inspired, has always left me wanting. Russell Hoban outshines many modern writers because of his love of the word. His passing was a loss to us all.
How did you come up with the title of this book?
Each book is the name of one of the three relics; thus, the Chalice, the Blood Crown, and the Augury of Gideon.
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
That there is a world unseen that roils around us, that is much older than we are, and is responsible for who we are today.
Are experiences in this book based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
I tend to anchor some characters to real life people. I don’t know of any writer who doesn’t, but I know plenty who deny they do. Cadmus, for instance, if very heavily anchored to Barry Andrews. He know this, of course, and I think he’s a bit perplexed to have such a vicious entity be his “demon child.” They’re nothing alike really, so please don’t judge Barry by the dastardly deeds of Cadmus Pariah.
What authors have most influenced your life?
JRR Tolkien, Clive Barker, and Russell Hoban (schizophrenia anyone?)
If you had to choose, is there a writer would you consider a mentor?
I would give my left eye to be mentored by Clive Barker. He isn’t a mere writer, but a world creator. He paints his realms, then writes about them. I find that fascinating and I admit that I do covet his abilities.
Who designed the cover of your book? Why did you select this illustrator?
Stacey Lucas drew the cover of ‘The Chalice’ simply because she was the absolute best at committing Cadmus to paper. For the ‘Blood Crown.,’ I wanted a bigger scope and to offer the reader a hint of both Cadmus and Orphaeus. Amanda Cook, an artist in Los Angeles, was responsible for that cover. She will also being doing the cover for ‘The Augury of Gideon.’
Do you have any advice for other writers?
Write what brings you the most joy, even if that joy inspires a level of discomfort. Listen to your characters; they have a lot more to say than you give them credit for. They will often write it for you, if you only give them the chance.
Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Despite some of more extreme scenes in the books, I hope the overall essence of ‘The Vampire Relics’ gives you Good Dreams.
Tracy Angelina Evans
Duncan, South Carolina
I try to interpret the myth that has intrinsically created our society, a myth that never died, we just choose to no longer see it or acknowledge it.