book four in the Felix Gomez vampire-detective series.
Eos, an imprint of HarperCollins Publisher
Links to where it can be purchased:
Science Fiction Book Club (special hardback edition)
I was born in El Paso, TX, and grew up in Las Cruces, NM. I have an BS from New Mexico State University and a Master’s from the University of Denver. I was first published in 2006.
Vampires vs zombies in the ultimate undead smackdown.
The suburbs of Denver were bad enough. Now the Colorado Mountains are being overrun with the wrong kind of the undead–the kind who spell trouble for Felix Gomez and his fellow vampires. To destroy an army of zombies and their demented creator, Felix must team up with a precocious teen with clairvoyant powers. But she demands something big in return: she wants to be undead too.
What about your other books?
NYMPHOS OF ROCKY FLATS: Felix Gomez goes to Iraq a soldier. He came back a vampire.
X-RATED BLOODSUCKERS: Every mystery writer needs an L.A. noir book. This is mine…with vampires.
THE UNDEAD KAMA SUTRA: Vampires save the Earth women from alien gangsters.
The Dim Light of Obscurity
A fellow novelist, Reed Ferrel Coleman said, “Getting published put me in touch with my obscurity.”
That’s me. Mr. Obscure. I’ll admit, I got lucky, I am published by HarperCollins. I’ve got the distribution and push (however minor) that you don’t get from specialty or small press. Still I have had to hustle. I got my contract and the skies didn’t open up and smother me with money (unfortunately). Nor did Oprah rave about my book. No movie deals. I’m not in line for any portion of the Obama stimulus package. But I was picked up by two book clubs and am available on audio.
No matter how you’re published, for almost all writers, nothing beats the first book signing. You’re mobbed by friends. They say, “I didn’t know you wrote a book.” And they follow with, “I could write a book.” Or, “I can’t write but I have an idea that’ll make us rich. I’ll dictate the story to you, you publish it and we’ll split the millions.”
Despite that, the first signing is a real high. Cherish it. Few writers are anointed by fate and for those lucky ones the path forward is a golden trail lit with the bright lights of fame. For the rest of us, a writer’s life can be an exercise in humility.
When my first novel came out, I was invited by Borders Books to do a signing in Phoenix, Arizona. I got there and they had posters of my book up. There was a nice stack of my books on a table surrounded by chairs. And amazingly enough, people were in them.
I introduced myself, thanking them for coming to my signing. A look of horror darkened every face and they said in mass, “We’re not here for your signing. We’re waiting for the French Club.” They all got up and retreated to the café. A moment later the manager came by to see how the signing was going. He saw all the empty chairs and told me, “I thought you were famous.” Apparently not.
So I’ve learned to keep my expectations pegged on modest and to remain grateful for every break. Once I met a fellow author from Colorado at the L.A. Times Festival of the Book. He was getting a lot of press (I’d gotten zilch) and we happened to sit next to each other at a booth. He had a few people coming by while I had a line waiting for me. Woo-hoo!
Why write about vampires?
Growing up I didn’t like vampire movies or books. The stories, no matter how serious, all seemed silly. I wrote a vampire story because after years of trying to get published with serious literature, I decided to go in the other direction. I wrote the ridiculous story I could imagine, a Chicano vampire investigates an outbreak of nymphomania at the Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant. X-Files meets Dashiell Hammett channeling The Big Lebowski in the barrio. That premise got me a contract for three books and sales were enough for another two titles. And now? I’m in contract limbo and waiting. More waiting. Waiting some more. Now I understand why writers are such nervous wrecks.
I’ve had fun with my protagonist, Chicano vampire-detective Felix Gomez. When I first wrote about him, I hadn’t thought much of his past other than he was from New Mexico as I am. I didn’t do that to cast him as my autobiographical alter ego, rather I did it out of laziness. This way my research consisted of remembering things instead of looking them up. Please don’t mistake me with Felix. He’s taller, still has his hair, and is much better looking.
Ask me to describe my books and I’ll say supernatural mystery but I prefer to think of them as cultural satire. We writers are told to write to our strengths and I know as Chicanos, we’re muy sangrones.
So in the great big world of publishing, I’m a tiny voice making jokes in the darkness. If you see me scheduled for a local signing, come by and visit. You don’t even have to buy a book. Simply chat for a few minutes and you’ll make me feel a little less obscure.