Charlaine Discusses True Blood and Sookie’s Sex Life
May 20, 2010 by Janet McIntosh
The UK’s Metro recently sat down and talked to Charlaine Harris about True Blood. Charlaine is the author of the Sookie Stackhouse series, which is where the HBO series was adapted from by Alan Ball. The interview with Charlaine began with asking her how she began writing the series. Charlaine has written mysteries for several years and had two other series’ under her belt before she began feeling like she had something more to offer. Charlaine explains that she came up with the idea of writing about a woman who was dating vampires. She figured a mystery that included romance and the supernatural would intrigue readers, and boy was she right! Charlaine admits that the hardest part was trying to sell the story. It took Charlaine’s agent two years to sell the book. The biggest problem they faced was where to categorize it. Was it a mystery, a romance, or sci-fi? When asked if she ever considered abandoning the project Charlaine had this to say:
“No, I had a taste of what I wanted to do. The change of scenario was invigorating. With mysteries you have to have a dead body, clues and a denouement, and I found the conventions restrictive.”
Charlaine was then asked what she felt readers expected from her books. Of course we want vampires but Charlaine has noticed that there is always a demand, especially amongst her younger readers, for Sookie to have sex. As most of her readers know, that doesn’t happen in every book. This is also a one of the biggest differences between Charlaine’s novels and the HBO series. Charlaine sees this difference but explains that this is where her and Alan Ball’s approach to the story is different. Another difference between the books and the show is that Alan Ball has added many extra characters. Charlaine explains that this is because you can’t have Sookie on the screen all the time and that Alan Ball has proven his talent with the unique characters he has added to the story and she feels she went with the right person when it came to adapting the books.
Charlaine was then asked if she finds it easy to turn the books out. Charlaine answered saying:
“I wrote two books a year for three years, which was hard. A book a year is easy. Some are hard no matter how many years’ experience you have. They become hard when I’m growing tired of the characters or can’t think of new things to do with them.”
Charlaine went on to talk about her writing habits. She admits that she is quite disciplined when it comes to writing. She goes to her office at 8:00 am and will work until 4:00 pm just like a normal office worker would.
Charlaine goes on to discuss with the Metro the current craze with vampires. Charlaine jokes that she wishes she knew, because had she known she would have written vampire stories a long time ago. Charlaine does give one theory though. She thinks that vampires represent the erotic. She also sees that there has been a rise in people reading urban fantasy novels and that meshes with the vampire fad.
The interview then begins to focus on Charlaine’s background and how she began writing. Charlaine has been writing since she was in highschool. When she married her second husband she was given the opportunity to write full time so she took a creative writing class and the lady who taught the class worked at a huge publishing firm who thought they should buy Charlaine’s book. She has always written mysteries because she grew up reading them. She was a huge fan of such authors as Jane Austen, Edgar Allen Poe, and Arthur Conan Doyle. As the interview came to a close Charlaine was asked what impact the success of the show has had on her. Charlaine answers by saying:
“My bank account’s a lot healthier. It’s also fun to meet people from other walks of life, such as producers, directors, actors, wardrobe people. It’s interesting to see how it all works.”
Charlaine was also asked if she has attracted a crazy fan base due to the show and the novels. Charlaine explains that she has some of the most delightful fans but admits that she comes across a few fans who are a little too into the story and do get upset when the story doesn’t go the way they want it to. Charlaine’s newest chapter in the Sookie Stackhouse series, “Dead in the Family”, was just released earlier this month and Mrs. Harris continues to bring fans a phenomenal story once again!
(Photo Credits: Todd Williamson/WireImage)