Love Those Vamps!

Michele Drier 2Michele Drier was born in Santa Cruz and is a fifth generation Californian. She’s lived and worked all over the state, calling both Southern and Northern California home. During her career in journalism—as a reporter and editor at daily newspapers—she won awards for producing investigative series.

SNAP: All That Jazz, Book Eight of The Kandesky Vampire Chronicles, was awarded second place by the Paranormal Romance Guild’s reviewers for best paranormal vampire book of 2014. The Kandesky Vampire Chronicles also won for best series in 2014. The Kandesky Vampire Chronicles include SNAP: The World Unfolds, SNAP: New Talent, Plague: A Love Story, DANUBE: A Tale of Murder, SNAP: Love for Blood, SNAP: Happily Ever After?, SNAP: White Night and SNAP: All That Jazz. SNAP: I, Vampire, Book Nine in the Kandesky Vampire Chronicles is scheduled for publication in 2015.

She also writes the Amy Hobbes Newspaper mysteries, Edited for Death and Labeled for Death. A third book, Delta for Death, is coming in 2015.

Catch up with Michele on Facebook.


We know those undead, right? They wear black, fly around at night, live off the blood of humans they attack.

When my son-in-law said, “Why are you writing mysteries? Write a vampire novel, they sell better,” I thought he was nuts. In truth, he is a bit nuts—on the creative, good side—and he reads four or five fantasy novels a week.

So began The Kandesky Vampire Chronicles, now eight books, following a regular person, Maxie Gwenoch, as she is immersed into the world of the Kandeskys, a five-hundred-year-old family of Hungarian vampires.

This was unknown territory for me. I’ve always read and loved mysteries…vampires, not so much. Now, I had an empty notebook I could fill any way I wanted.

Building a different world is challenging and freeing. I’ve chosen to keep the Chronicles, and the Kandeskys, tethered in the “real” world, so they’ve lost much of their initial viciousness. Centuries ago, they gave up hunting and killing humans for food and recruited donors. With a stable food source, they began a trading empire that eventually morphed into ownership of SNAP, the world’s glitziest celeb gossip magazine and TV show, headquartered in Los Angeles.

Now they mix with aristocrats, Hollywood elite, the cream of international business leaders and power-brokers from across the Americas and Europe. They entertain lavishly at Baron Kandesky’s Hungarian castle, feeding their guests five-course meals while they eat steak tartare and drink Bulls Blood.

It’s a heady existence for Maxie, this world of private jets, armored Mercedes limousines, personal shoppers and a stream of demons for security. When she took the job as Managing Editor for the SNAP magazines, she was looking for glamour and Jimmy Choos. What she’s found is a luxe life…plus Jean-Louis, second-in-command of the Kandesky family and love of Maxie’s life.

How does a Southern California girl, bred and raised in the sunshine, handle falling in love with a vampire, a creature of the night? Carefully, like a pet hedgehog.

As their love deepens, Jean-Louis wants to marry Maxie. Could she give up sunshine, walking the beaches, eating those five course meals?

SNAP is expanding into Central and Eastern Europe, seeing the fall of the USSR and the rise of the oligarchs as a stunning new business prospect. After Jean-Louis moves to Kiev, will Maxie leave her beloved SoCal behind to live with the man she loves?

Because of their visibility, the Kandeskys collect enemies by the bushel; both vampires and thugs from the emerging Eastern European gangs and too often Maxie find herself with a target on her back as she’s the easiest way to get at Jean-Louis.

Set against the political turmoil of Ukraine and Russia, Maxie faces both business and personal challenges as she falls deeper in the rabbit hole that’s the Kandeskys.

SNAP DrierWriting this series has been great fun. It’s stimulated me to push my storytelling skills, to daydream, to develop creativity…and to fall in love with my characters.

I’m with Maxie when she’s torn between life as she knows it and the abyss of the unknown. I’ve been there as she’s slammed to the floor of the limo when rocket grenades are launched. I’m with her as Jean-Louis makes love to her and she loses her heart.

As I set out on my writing journey, I had no idea that paranormal romance would capture me, but the Kandesky Chronicles have. And they’ve captured readers as well. The Chronicles were nominated at the best paranormal series of 2014 by the reviewers at the Paranormal Romance Guild, and Book Eight, SNAP: All That Jazz, was nominated as the best book.

I’m heading off to Ukraine again as I work on Book Nine, SNAP: I, Vampire.

What stories do you tell yourself? What does your fantasy world look like?