If you love vampire stories with a strong and badass female lead, you’ll most definitely want to check out Chris Denmead’s Vlada A Dracula Tale. This is a gender-swapped version of Dracula with its own special twists and dark magic. Read on for details about Vlada, where you can buy it, information about the awesome upcoming audiobook, his favorite vampire stories, and more!
PopHorror – Hi Chris! How is 2021 treating you so far?
Chris Denmead – Good after several starts and delays and BS, I finally got Vlada a Dracula Tale published. I’m going to learn how to ride a motorcycle and get vaccinated!
PopHorror – Sounds like fun! How did you get involved in the indie horror scene?
Chris Denmead – Through my Radio show. Dr. Chris Radio of Horror, its a 13-year-old Horror radio show and the longest-running horror show in New England on the dial.
PopHorror – That’s awesome! How long have you wanted to be a writer?
Chris Denmead – Longer than I’ve been a Horror host in New England. I have written stuff here and there.
PopHorror – Before Vlada, what other pieces had you wrote?
Chris Denmead – Poetry and 5 audiobook scripts based on the Erotic Rom-com Graphic Novel, Sunstone, a children’s Halloween book, a Vampire E-Book, as well as 3 comic books.
PopHorror – Tell us about Vlada A Dracula Tale.
Chris Denmead – It’s the story of Dracula that you’re familiar with but we gender-swapped the cast. Some of the story elements are the same and we added a NEW character plus gave some more personality to certain characters. We also changed up the characters in different ways, like Vlada has three husbands instead of Brides and they are White, Black, and Asian. Our Vanhelsing is a Black Woman. We wanted to do it as 3 separate comics but decided to homage Bernie Wrightson’s Frankenstein and do it that way. Keeping the style as a comic and having comic artists like Tim Vigil and Tim Seeley work on it.
PopHorror – What was the inspiration behind it?
Chris Denmead – A Shakespear play I saw and they gender-swapped the cast. I said, “Ooohhh I want to do that but with Dracula” and NO ONE had done it before.
PopHorror – The illustrator for Vlada is Kent Hunt. How did you meet him?
Chris Denmead – He came on my radio show in 2013 for an interview when he was a guest at the Boston Comic-Con.
PopHorror – His work is fantastic. His art pairs beautifully with your words. Wouldn’t you agree?
Chris Denmead – It’s amazing. He has such majestic gothic detail to what he did. He was really trying to homage the late great Bernie Wrightson, to who we dedicated the book alongside the late Author Jack Ketchum… a good friend of mine.
PopHorror – Now that Vlada is published. What are your goals for it?
Chris Denmead – I want it EVERYWHERE. I didn’t write it for fortune and glory. I wrote it to tell a cool story based on a classic story with love and homages to some great Vamps like Regine from Fright Night Part 2. I want it in libraries and in the hands of teenagers and adults. We also kept the sex and violence to a Pg14 rating for us to be able to reach a wide demographic.
PopHorror – That’s a good idea. What do you hope readers take away from it?
Chris Denmead – Strong female characters who kickass. A really cool gothic story with a Female Vampire, which I still don’t think there are enough of them and there should be more.
PopHorror – Couldn’t agree more! I’m guessing your fan of vampire stories, so what are some of your favorite vampire books or movies?
Chris Denmead – Traci Briery’s The Vampire Memories, Tomb of Dracula by Marv Wolfman and Gene Colon, Fright Night Part 2, The Castlevania video games, The Hammer Horror Films, Goodnight Kiss 1 & 2 by RL Stein,
My favorite Vampire movie ever is My Best friend is a Vampire. And I do a Vampire movie-by-minute podcast.
PopHorror – Would you rather be a werewolf or vampire?
Chris Denmead – Vampire, of course! Less shedding and I’m a night owl anyway.
PopHorror – What’s next for you?
Chris Denmead – We are going to do an audiobook for Vlada on Kickstarter this May with actress Diana Porter. I’m going to redraw Resurrection of Dracula, my 2016 comic book, with Ken’s art. I have a comic coming about a couple of teens dealing with depression and a redo of my children’s Halloween picture book.
PopHorror – All of that sounds wonderful and I can’t wait for the audiobook. Diana Porter is amazing!! I wish you good luck in all your upcoming endeavors!
For everyone reading, stay tuned for details about the Vlada audiobook (you can sign up for the launch on Kickstarter – HERE). You can currently buy the Vlada paperback by going to the OFFICIAL FACEBOOK PAGE OR ETSY.