Piper Maitland lives with her husband on a farm in Tennessee with three bratty Yorkshire Terriers, a Chinese Crested, and assorted farm animals. She has also written novels under the name Michael Lee West. Visit her online at www.pipermaitland.com.
Bats, big teeth, and blood drinking are beloved staples of vampire lore. Classic literature and horror films have reinforced the immortals’ unusual qualities: they sleep in coffins during the day and stalk the living at night. If a pretty girl accidentally invites a vampire into her house, she can chase him away with garlic, crucifixes, or holy water.
When I wrote my first vampire novel, I wanted to retain the core traditions and debunk others. Since myths and magic arise from undiscovered science, I decided to combine these elements. Drawing from my background in nursing, I created vampires with a human-like physiology. They would have DNA, reproductive systems, and beating hearts.
But how did vampirism originate?