Friday, November 4, 2011

Barry Manilow and Vampires - You're Kidding Right?

You're reading this title and I'm guessing your wondering what in the world does Barry Manilow have to do with vampires? Let me just start out by saying I'm really not crazy because by the time you read how I connect these two completely different things in my mind you might be considering it. I promise there's a point to my rambling so let me just get to it.

I was a very introverted child growing up. The girl with freckles and buck teeth that everyone used to laugh at, yeah that would be me. We didn't have much when it came to money when I was young but we did have music and our imaginations. Being this shy kid who was always being picked on I fell in love with Barry Manilow because I related to him on some deep emotional level. I discovered that we were alike when I mentioned a song to a particularly cruel child in class one day. Barry, while making hit records, was the one star that people would always make jokes about. This kid remarked that Barry would be the only guy who'd ever like me because he was just as much of a nerd as I was. Of course that made me really just adore Barry Manilow.

So what does that have to do with vampires you might ask? As the years went by my imagination grew and I started having dreams about a man I still write about today. The first night I dreamed of him we were dancing in his castle to a Barry Manilow song. My dream guy was a vampire and so I just somehow correlated my beautiful vampire with the beautiful music of my favorite singer/songwriter. I wouldn't start writing for many more years but I did start singing.

Singing was eventually what pulled me away from being the nerdiest girl on the planet earth to this woman that men were actually fawning over. I wrote to Barry Manilow several times, I have to say he never returned my fan letters but I forgive him. I wanted to be just like him and make beautiful music that helped other people understand it was okay to be different. Between Barry Manilow and my dream love Rafe I managed to survive puberty.

I spent ten years on the road enjoying a great career in music before I decided this just wasn't the life I wanted to raise a family in. When I decided to give up on music I knew there had to be some alternative way to entertain people and stay at home with my children. I was still having these incredible dreams of my Rafe and I decided that writing about him would be a great way to do both the things I loved. With that thought in mind I sat down one night and started writing Tears of Crimson, which would later be changed to A Night at Tears of Crimson. I bet you're a mind-reader on this question. Who's song was playing when I first sat down to write my very first chapter? Barry Manilow! Wow you've got some extraordinary perception skills.

The soothing sound of his music relaxes me at first and then I allow myself to get lost in the beauty of his words and voila, magic happens. Don't get me wrong I love all types of music from rock, pop, metal, country, and jazz. Barry Manilow is always my first choice though when it comes to getting down to some serious writing.

There you have it. Whether or not Barry knows it he has become a vampire inspiration. I guess it's true that he writes the songs because he definitely wrote the songs that gave me the push I needed to make my book happen. I bet you'll never look at Barry the same way again! Ten fangs for the man that makes the young girls cry, and thanks for making me smile.

Michelle Hughes
Paranormal Romance Author   

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