Shelter-in-Place Sale!

My publisher, NineStar Press, continues to rock! As the pandemic intensifies, with people stuck at home and the economy crashing, NineStar extended the 40% off all books indefinitely!

That’s right, you can now read about Thomas and Xavier meeting in The Vampire’s Angel; or about the divine quest upon which Xavier goes in The Vampire’s Quest! If those two goody, goody vampires bore you, then spice up life with Charon and his lust for living beyond any rules in The Vampire’s Protege! And don’t forget about Simon. You think the pandemic is bad, wait until he teaches you about the real nature of Santa Claus in Santa Is a Vampire! Here’s the link to my author page, where you can buy all of them: Damian Serbu Author Page!

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NineStar Press and the Pandemic

It’s a small thing at first glance. But I am an anxious person in certain situations, and a hypochondriac. So the pandemic has my nerves on edge. I have taken various steps to help myself, by being informed from reputable sources; but also by limiting my media intake – no news for me once I get to dinner; by removing certain phone alerts. We’re also disinfecting, social distancing, trying not to get too concerned about store stocks being depleted.

So what’s this small thing, and why am I writing about it? Another thing that helps to calm me is to look for positives amid the chaos. They exist! And it’s not by way of sticking your head in the sand to seek them. I like videos about kids and pets interrupting virtual meetings because people are home! (Now more people understand the life of a writer, FYI!) And to see kindnesses happening, such as getting groceries for neighbors or people giving up the last toilet paper to an elderly couple. Those things brighten my spirits and give me hope. They will not change the world, or save us from the virus. But they show a goodness in our human spirit that can lift us for a moment.

Link to NineStar!
Link to My NineStar Page!

My press, NineStar Press, which I have LOVED since they first brought me aboard, is doing one of those things, too. For the month of March, while so many of us are sequestered and maybe feeling isolated or wondering what in the hell to do with ourselves, the press has EVERY BOOK at 40% off, and some books are free. So while you’re hanging at home night after night, grab a book from NineStar at a great discount! All of my titles are included, FYI. When I heard about this sale, it made me happy. One of those things that won’t save people, cure the virus, or stop the panic people may feel. But it is a kindness, a way to say as a small business that we’re in this together and should help in whatever way we can. If someone feels they can buy a book because of the discount and it gives them a few hours of release from the stress, then helping that one person is worth it.

And – for those anxious like me – reading a good book is still a great form of escapism! I just wouldn’t recommend reading any books, fiction or nonfiction, about a pandemic . . .

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The Realm of the Vampire Council – Book V

I wanted to dash off a quick update about my writing in progress for everyone!

As previously announced, first and foremost NineStar Press and I are in the midst of editing and preparing The Bachmann Family Secret for publication this July! Can’t wait to share it with all of you!

However, that does not take all of my writing time. In fact, quite often I sit around and wait to hear from my editor or someone, dive into it for a little bit, and ship it off again. In the meantime, I am on the outlining stage for my next novel, which will be Book V in the Realm of the Vampire Council Series. I tentatively titled it, The Vampire’s War. I am so tempted to expound upon it . . . But I can’t. Not yet. Stay tuned!

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Oscar Best Pictures

As some of you may remember, Paul and I go to see all the Oscar Best Picture nominees every year. I like to post my ranking of the movies before the Gay Super Bowl. I’m a bit late this year, because we just saw the last one this morning!

What expertise do I possess for publishing such a list? None. Absolutely nothing. Except we’ve been doing this for probably twenty years. And I enjoy it. And it gives me something else to share with all of you, and to chat about.

Ranked from my least favorite to my favorite, along with my inane commentary:

Marriage Story: This should not be a Best Picture nominee. It’s a mediocre film about how famous people get divorced. And why are all the women in it portrayed as so nasty? So, not my favorite.

Parasite: First, I own my bias: I’m not a subtitle fan, because I feel I miss half the movie. That’s not the fault of the movie, but it biases my judgment. That being said, the story itself is not that inspiring or engaging. The commentary on class is important and well told, however. Best foreign film, yes. Best Picture – eh.

The Irishman: Maybe I’m just bored of epic gangster movies. Because the acting was good. The story well told. But this one was much toooo long. And the varying ages of the actors throughout was not always convincing. It left me feeling like a lot of effort went into telling the same story yet again . . . with a lot of the same actors.

Joker: I said this right after I saw it: This movie is a good movie about contemporary society, and at least one way that angry white men become extremely violent white men. Phoenix is extremely good in it. But I rank it lower because it bills itself as a comic book movie – it’s supposed to be about Joker. But it ends up not being a comic book movie at all. So that annoyed me. As if it was labeled about The Joker to pull people in and did a bait and switch.

Now we get to the movies I think all deserved a Best Picture nomination. Above, maybe the last one but nothing before it. Moving forward, these movies definitively deserved the nomination.

Little Women: The story is well told, following the novel closely but giving us some updates so the Victorian moralism doesn’t choke us to death. The pace is well done and the acting all solid. The bouncing back and forth in time could get confusing, especially during the first third of the movie, but I found this one charming and a pleasure to watch with its love and connection and messaging.

Once Upon a Time . . . in Hollywood: I always leave a Tarantino movie thinking, he is out of his fucking mind. But his movies capture my attention. They are funny, especially when you think this is NOT funny as you laugh out loud. He comments on society, Hollywood, and humanity in crazy ways. Very good acting. Wicked and weird.

Judy: Disclaimor: Yes, I know. This movie was not nominated for Best Picture by the Academy. I write novels, so I get to change reality when I want to. Because this one deserved a Best Picture nomination. Of course Zellweger better win Best Actress or I will lose my mind tomorrow. But the movie itself told a painful story about the human condition and a gay icon in a loving way without glossing over the harsh reality. So it makes my list. Take that, Hollywood.

Ford v. Ferrari: I think the acting made this movie. It was extraordinary. The pace was extremely good, too. And not just because it’s about racing. In fact, I am not a big racing fan. If it had all been about racing, I probably would have fallen asleep. Instead it tells a gripping story with racing as the prop. It’s intense and fun and powerful.

1917: Everyone says this is the favorite to win, and I can see why. With brilliant cinematography and a moving story, you sit in your seat and from beginning to end feel captivated. It contains major surprises, emotional ups and downs, and gives one of the most realistic portrayals of World War I in a long time. That said, and this is the historian coming out in me (no pun intended), what the main character keeps surviving time after time gets to be too much, as if a Superhero took over a movie that is supposed to be realistic. Still, this was extremely well done and was narrowly beaten out in my mind.

Jojo Rabbit: I headed off to this movie holding my nose, wondering how on earth someone could make a movie about Nazis into a comedy. There is nothing funny about Hitler. And genocide. And much of Nazi Germany. But despite that being the buzz about the movie, that’s not what it does. It tells a story about the humanness in everyone. It is a growing up tale, and about the indoctrination of people into awful belief systems. And it celebrates resistance, even amid the tragedy. Original. Funny. Painful. Outstanding. Definitely my Best Picture for the year.

Which, of course, means nothing. But at least I captured your attention to the bitter end. Thanks for reading.

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Ghost Novel Release Date!

As I previously mentioned, NineStar Press and I will be releasing my next novel this summer, The Bachmann Family Secret! We’re in the editing stages now.

Good news: the release date is set for July 27th! I am already excited to share it with everyone! The date could be moved if something comes up, but we are on schedule and I doubt it will get behind.

Please watch in the coming weeks for more information: the book blurb, more about the characters, how it relates to my vampire novels, and, of course, the fabulous cover that NineStar always produces!

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New Year Announcement

Hey, All,

So – Paul and I officially moved into our new place and are pretty much settled in! In addition to loving the new house, it feels wonderful to get back to routine and especially to writing and the work on my novels!! The building process took me away more than I anticipated.

Let’s kick off the New Year with a huge announcement! Coming this year – THE BACHMANN FAMILY SECRET: A COMPANION NOVEL TO THE REALM OF THE VAMPIRE COUNCIL SERIES!! My editor and I are finalizing additions I am making to it right now. More later!

Happy New Year!

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What a way to kick off the holidays!

First, Paul and I moved into our new house. It’s been . . . exhausting but exciting at the same time. I still have to pinch myself every now and then, to remind myself we actually live here now.

Second, and even more exciting – the 2018-19 Rainbow Awards were announced on Dec. 7th. Santa Is a Vampire received a tie vote for third place in the Best Gay Humor category! I am so excited to receive this mention and inclusion, I could explode!!!

If you didn’t check it out last year, then – here’s to finding out in 2019 the truth about Santa! Click the links below for more information:

To purchase it: Santa Is a Vampire

To read the Best Gay Humor category: Rainbow Awards – Best Gay Humor

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Quick Status Update!

Hi, All,

A quick update, especially since I know I have been more quiet than usual on social media and in my blog of late!

First, the super exciting news: NineStar Press agreed to publish my next novel! We’re still working on a release date – I’ll keep you posted. Needless to say, I am SUPER excited to share this ghost story with you!

Second, an explanation: my less active presence will continue for the next couple months. Paul and I are in the midst of moving. We built a new house – we’re thrilled about it. But the construction took a long time, we’ve been living with a friend, and we’ll finally possess our new home Dec. 6th. It’s been hard keep up with everything: full time jobs, personal life, and my writing during this transition. After the New Year, things should settle down and I’ll be back at it!

Thanks for checking in. Happy Thanksgiving!!!

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A Lambda Literary Mention

Sometimes, a seemingly mundane or small thing can mean a great deal. That happened to me recently. Lambda Literary, long a champion of LGBTQ+ literature, published an article for Halloween about ten horror novels for our community that perhaps are under the radar. William Johnson, the author, included Santa Is a Vampire! It meant a lot to me to discover my name on the list, and my book included! Enjoy the article.

Lambda’s “Spooky Deep Cuts”

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Basement Dwelling

This blog entry begins with some crucial context: Paul and I are building a new home, and for the last couple months have been living with a friend because our house sold and the new one won’t be done until November.

More specifically, we elected to live in a friend’s basement. The rent is good and, most importantly, our LOUD dogs can live here without getting us evicted. With our two and my friend’s two, there are four dogs in the house, so it’s like constantly living in a doggy daycare.

But I digress – the reason for boring you with the above has to do with what this has inspired in my writing. You see, living in a basement reminds me a lot of being a vampire and hiding from the daylight. Lurking in the shadows, comfortable but hidden.

And I am in the midst of writing my fourth installment in my vampire series, The Realm of the Vampire Council. I had no idea when we embarked on this temporary living situation that it would leak into my story. Of course, that should not surprise me. After all these years, the Muse still surprises me with where she find inspiration?! Come on.

But, alas, she did it again. I assumed I would enjoy hanging with my friends here, watching four dogs frolic about, and get ready to move. That’s all true – but . . .

The setting has become the spot of a scene. (I can’t say more, what with spoilers and all.) Thoughts pop into my head about what a vampire would do or think, all because I am living underground. More eerie, I don’t get as many of my ideas from my usual places. I often think of things to write while on my jog. Not so much here. Or when driving around. Not really. It’s the basement, calling to me.

Maybe it’s because of October, with the spirit world closer to us. Or my brain is all frazzled from its lost routine and a unique environment. Or the Muse switched things up just to fuck with me – she LOVES to do that. Probably all three.

Happy October, everyone!

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