Do you have a love for Vampires? Or just Dracula himself? Well look no further, Author Charles E. Butler is no stranger to this trend that has stretched over the past century. Butler recently completed his new book Vampires; the Final Hunt. The best way that I can describe such a unique book is by referring to it as the infinitive Encyclopedia on movie vampires. This book will update Butler’s previous three volumes, The Romance of Dracula, Vampires Everywhere and Vampires Under the Hammer. Butler not only dives into the depths with vampire films over a century old, he takes us to modern movies such as Underworld and Daybreakers. Butler to embrace readers with his knowledge and unblushing taste for these memorable films. Butler’s reviews are easy on the eyes and his conclusions regarding these notable films will definitely tap into the interest of the reader. Many of these films will be added to the reader’s must-see list. Without fail, Butler is a fan who possess the ability to keep the reader focused until the end. I know that I would enjoy more books of this caliber on other monsters in the Universal Franchise. I am betting that Butler will be making more noise with books similar to his vampire escapades in the future.
Charles E. Butler has been gracious enough to give iHorror an exclusive interview about his inspirations behind the writing and a glimpse into his future projects. Vampire fans indulge!
iHorror: Thank you for chatting with us. Can you tell our readers and your fans a little bit about yourself and how you became a interested in the genre?
Charles E. Butler: I am born and raised in the North of England. I became hooked on fantasy when I discovered Marvel comics in a doctors waiting room. The 70s and 80s were a great time for television and I remember being allowed to watch the old Universal horror movies and Appointment with Fear movie anthologies on Friday and Saturday nights. Hating the confines of school, I left at 16 and in the last thirty years have probably tried my hand at every occupation going. I have been drawing – self taught – for as long as I can remember and had a brief stab at independent comic books. I began acting locally in the early 1990s and have tread the boards nationwide. I have appeared as walk on in many a TV show and written and produced my own stage plays and had films shown in the US vampire conventions. When I started writing it was brought on by anger and depression at being made unemployed again. My first book, The Romance of Dracula, was published independently in 2010 after receiving 48 rejections from worldwide publishers. I have always been Dracula’s biggest fan. Ironically, that first comic book that I picked up was Marvel UK’s Dracula Lives issue No. 2. Since the publication of my first book, I have written countless articles for websites and magazines and my first three books have the distinction of being placed in the State Lending Library of Southern Australia! I have appeared at Whitby’s famous Bram Stoker International Film Festival in 2014 selling artwork and books and a new TV series in the working called Fragments of Fear features my short horror story being read on film by Hammer Icon Caroline Munro.
iH: You did an amazing job with the preparation and research for your book Vampires; The Final Hunt. How long did it take you to complete this project?
CB: Vampires; the Final Hunt was written in about a year – give or take – I was juggling with three books and this one pipped the other two at the post. I had all my material to hand and finished it. That is some more advice, always have a project on the back burner to give variety.
iH: What was the most challenging moment when writing specifically Vampires; The Final Hunt?
CB: Deciding what to put in and what to leave out. I edit my own work and illustrate the pictures. As it was a continuation of two books, The Romance of Dracula and Vampires Everywhere; the Rise of the Movie Undead, I was aware that the book may take on schizophrenic properties, but I think the two balance themselves out now. I’m quietly proud of the finished result.
iH: Vampires; The Final Hunt gives a very precise and wonderful review of vampire films, especially those focusing on Dracula. This book is a vampire buff’s dream come true. When you first started this project, did you know it was going to be this thorough? Was your finished product your original vision? Or did it become much more?
CB: It became more and less than expected. The lesser aspect being that there were still a few movies that I wanted to discuss but the space needed would have been phenomenal. On the positive note, I realized after I had finished it that all the Dracula films reviewed are first time reviews in print for these classic films thought lost forever. The Universal Spanish language movie for example. is discussed as an independent undertaking as opposed to being labelled as the Bela Lugosi doppleganger – a moniker that dogs this superior film every step of the way. A great coup was being able to view the Purple Playhouse theatre production of Dracula and include it in the volume. I’m not sure if writers ever realize their full vision on the paper, but I came pretty close with this.
iH: What are you working on now? What is your next project?
CB: I have put the vampire in film to bed for now with Vampires; the Final Hunt. I’m concentrating my gaze on the werewolf in movies with a book titled Werewolves; the Children of the Full Moon. The book covers the furry frights from as far back as Universal movies’ The Werewolf of London and The Wolf Man and goes on to talk about classic films The Curse of the werewolf, The Howling and An American Werewolf in London. It finishes full circle with the Benicio Del Toro movie, The Wolfman.
iH: Is there a subject you would never write about as an author? If so, what is it?
CB: I am really just finding my feet as a writer. My books are concentrating solely on a reminisce-based recap of all those films that inspired my creative juices. I have a novel on the back burner and it sometimes surprises me what I’m compelled to have my characters go through to achieve a good story. as a fledgling, I cannot say what subject wouldn’t interest me at this time. I’m having too much fun.
iH: Is horror the only genre you have written? Is it your favorite?
CB: So far, the film books are the only things I have written. I do have the novel as specified above and I would like to take writing and drawing further by venturing into graphic novels. But that is way in the future.
iH: If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
CB: There are so many in books and comic books. The Romance of Dracula was inspired by reading works from Kim Newman and Stephen Jones. I like books written with good prose and language and have many heroes. I could not choose a winner off the top of my head.
iH: What writing advice do you have for other aspiring authors?
CB: Keep going! Make sure it is what you want. If it is, enjoy it and write something you are satisfied with. If you like it, chances are someone else will. The old truism; There is always room at the top, is probably true. But to get there takes hard work. As an independent, your hard work starts after the writing. The publicity demands are shocking and that is where the real work lies. Don’t base your writings on the monetary gain. Above all, believe in yourself and your work and never give up. You can do it!
Can’t get enough of this guy? Do not fear, Charles E. Butler can be found all over the web: