Have you ever longed to leave your life behind? Sever all ties and disappear? Even for just one second? What if it wasn’t a choice anymore?
Darkly Dreaming is a literary exploration into a sinister world where vampires lurk in our shadows. As interested in our heroines’ emotional changes as their physical transformations, the story leads you through their infection, transformation, and difficult adaption to their strange new life. We experience their hopes and compromises, heartbreaks and rage as deeply as they do.
A modern gothic, these vampires aren’t the undead, they have been infected by a virus and undergone physical changes as radical as a butterfly during metamorphosis.
These vampires are as beguiling, cruel and fatal as cats, and just as irresistible
When and where do you prefer to write?
I snatch time whenever I can around my two very full-on jobs, and being a wife, friend and daughter. Ideally, I like to write later in the day. I have two creative periods- mid morning through until a late lunch, and then later evening, about 9pm through until about 1am.
Where? I mainly write sitting on my bed, with a lap desk, because that’s where I have space and privacy. However, if I could choose, my favourite way to write is by the sea, sitting in the shade, on a sunny day. I love to be able to look up from my writing and rest my eyes on the sea while I contemplate how to word the next bit.
Saying that, whenever I’m quiet I’m probably planning a story. Walking is one of my favourite ways to plan a story in my head, especially if I’ve had a vivid dream the night before, one that’s going to become a scene or a short story.
Do you need peace and quiet when you are writing?
I’m hideously distracted by sound, especially voices. However, I’ve discovered I can get around this by listening to music while I write.
Not just any just music though. It has to be a specific style, and I need to know the collection well. If there’s a song of the wrong tempo, or a new song, I’ll be torn out of my concentration.
I have a collection of favourite songs for writing my Darkly Vampire Trilogy too on Spotify. You can join my on Spotify, and listen to my inspiration music if you have a Spotify account: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/05orcQBExIBNJTrwXT9wtL?si=mkXNOkfLQCiHHIwBFDFg1w&utm_source=copy-link
If you had the chance to co-write a book. Whom would it be with?
You didn’t stipulate whether that person had to be alive, so if I’m allowed to pick someone who is dead, I would pick my best friend Dina.
She helped me write Darkly Dreaming. She had the ability, like no one else, to join my in my imaginary worlds and help me wrest forth the words and details to make a story truly come to life. We would sit over steaming mugs of coffee and slide into an alternative reality together, painting the character lives and loves with words, adding depth, and twists and poignant details. I miss this terribly.
Say someone asks if they can use your name in a book. Would you rather be the ‘good one’ or the ‘bad one’?
It’s so much more fun to be utterly bad, isn’t it? I’m good in my normal life, sensible, considerate. How delicious to be given the chance to be flamboyantly wicked.
I’ve done this for my cousin in books 2 and 3- I borrowed her name for Abigail, my utterly evil villain, and she loves it.
Who would you like/have liked to interview?
Anne Rice. She was so passionately alive. I followed her on Facebook, and she was ferociously engaged right up until she became ill at the end. We shared a lot of morals. And Interview With A Vampire was one of my favourite books as a teenager.
Where can I find you when you are reading?
Mainly bed or the beach. I like to lie down to read, and escape life into the pages, so I like complete privacy. My absolutely favourite people in the world are people who will quietly curl up and read with me.
Where can I find you when you are not writing/reading?
In the kitchen. I enjoy cooking, and my husband and I follow Keto, which means a lot of cooking meals from scratch. I love to put on some upbeat music, and create a physical representation of my love.
What goes through your mind when you hold your new book in your hands for the first time?
I suffer from imposter syndrome, so to honest, after a few seconds delight that I’ve succeeded in getting my ideas into print, my worries kick in that it should be better, people won’t enjoy it, etc. Until now I’ve self-published my work. This is my first book with a publisher, so I’ve really enjoyed having their support with editing and proof-reading. It’s reassuring.
How do you come up with a title for your book?
I started with a longer title for Book 1- A Life Dreamed Darkly, and then realised it worked better condensed to the more succinct Darkly Dreaming. Once I had that title, the titles for the next two books in the trilogy were easy.
How do you pick a cover for your book?
I needed a cover that conveyed that Darkly Dreaming is a novel about vampires, but I needed it to communication that while very adult, it’s not ‘Mills & Boons With Fangs’.
The novel is more of a literary exploration of the friends relationship, and Rae’s adaption emotionally to being a monster.
I was a bit stumped initially about how to say all this in a picture without resorting to cliches.
While researching ideas, I stumbled across a picture of a woman with a butterfly on her face. I loved what it said about blundering blindly through life, and that feeling of suffocation. The imagery fitted too.
My vampires aren’t the undead, they are infected with a virus. I explain in my story that when infected they pass into a coma while they change completely internally- like a butterfly, or moth, during metamorphosis. So, choosing a moth to sit on her face made sense.
Then I wanted something extra. Something startling to represent the change the friends go through, emotionally as well as physically.
My vampires are very feline, they live in prides, and have cats teeth, and retractable claws. Vivid, startling, cats eyes gazing out from the moths wings, to signify their utter transformation fitted perfectly.
I was very lucky that SpellBound’s cover designer was able to take my ramblings and create such a beautiful cover.
About the Author
Chloe Hammond is an Aquarius, and she’s very Aquarius. Born in Liverpool in 1975, she grew up in rural West Wales. She now lives in Barry, South Wales, with her husband and rescue cat and dogs. She studied Creative Writing as part of her degree always planned to write, but life got in the way.
Chloe worked in homeless hostels, particularly with vulnerable teenagers for twenty years, and saw too many of the world’s uninvited monsters. She developed extreme anxiety and depression, which caused terrifying nightmares and sleepless nights.
In her typically contrary way, she used this to her advantage and the nightmares became this novel, and the sleepless nights were when she found time to write it.
She created her own monsters to deal with the memories.
Her best friend, and number one cheer leader, was her inspiration and the person she could spin other worlds with. When her friend died suddenly of a brain haemorrhage, Chloe struggled to overcome her grief to start writing again. She had just found her rhythm again, when the worldwide pandemic hit, and she was gripped in the terror of losing more loved ones.
She dug deep, and is currently working on the third book of the Darkly Vampire Trilogy, as Rae and Layla are booting her brain, demanding their story is written, they have adventures to live.
Chloe has had several poems and short stories published in various charity anthologies. She was nominated for both Best Paranormal Author and Best Horror Author in Reality Bites 2018 Book Awards. Chloe won a Gold Stake award at the International Vampire Film and Arts Festival 2022, for her short story, The Caretakers.
Facebook : http://www.facebook.com/chloehammondauthor
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Thank you so much for hosting this Q&A and for your support x
A pleasure 🙂