Thursday, January 26, 2023

Best Vampire Short Stories First Half of the Nineteenth Century Edited by Andrew Barger



With Teeth
by

As one might expect from the stories in this annotated, best vampire story anthology, teeth were used prominently in the nascent development of the vampirism mythos. And due to the human-monster theme, vampire stories developed more quickly and became more robust from both story and character development than other genres during the period in question, such as werewolf and ghost stories; so much so that they triumphed over most novels in this respect. Yet many claim that short stories are a lesser art form than the novel.

Does time bolster art and transform it into something more robust? Certainly as the aging of a Bordeaux brings out complexities of character unknown in newer wines, so too does the novel offer a bouquet of characters that are impossible to foster in the limited pages of a short story. Characters like certain wines take time to develop, and in this aspect deference must be given to the novel in whatever modern form it may take.

Where critics of short fiction often err, however, is assuming that more pages equate to greater literary art. It’s been claimed Earnest Hemmingway said that the phrase “Baby carriage for sale – slightly used” is the best thing he ever wrote.

The literary world is marred with dead trees and terrible, fat novels. Does length equal creativity and originality? Do pages equal greatness? Does size matter in fiction? Edgar Allan Poe, the same author who formed the foundation of the modern short story, claimed just the opposite. He preferred a complete tale that could be consumed in one sitting without interruption of the reader’s concentration.
And it was the same Edgar Allan Poe who likely never penned a vampire story given the research I conducted for Coffee with Poe: A Novel of Edgar Allan Poe’s Life. If a reader has to stretch their imagination to determine if a character is a vampire, then it is likely not a vampire.

Teeth play a telling role (as does the presence of blood) in many vampire tales. Because of this a number of anthologist have placed Poe’s “Ligeia” in their collections in the hopes that if the tale is put in a substantial number of vampire anthologies it will be transmogrified into a vampire story. This is certainly a misapplication in a story where the supposed vampire never comes in contact with another vampire. When Ligeia dies and is subsequently brought back to life through Rowena’s body, the unnamed protagonist touches her and she moves away, again displaying no lust for blood. Before her death, Rowena is given a cup of reddish liquid that could easily be wine or a potion concocted by the protagonist. There is no evidence that anyone’s blood was spilt. The only other hint of vampirism comes when Rowena’s lips part on her deathbed to display a line of “pearly teeth.”

Yes, it would be nice for this fifty year period, this cradle of all vampire short stories in the English language, to include a vampire tale by Edgar Allan Poe. But the sad answer is that Poe never penned a vampire story. Poe’s only reference to vampires were in his poems. “Tamerlane” references a vampire-bat and “To Helen” calls out vampire-winged panels. Articles about the vampire motif in “The Fall of the House of Usher” have been disorganized and unconvincing. Essays about a volitional vampire in “Morella” have . . . well . . . sucked. The ponderous dissertations that seek to attribute the protagonist’s lust for teeth to a vampire fixation in “Berenice” have felt chompy. Vampires do not lust for teeth, rather blood. A Poe story listed in the Table of Contents for an anthology boosts sales. Nevertheless, in the case of vampire anthologies, Poe’s inclusion is misdirected.

Unlike the pure horror story genre in The Best Horror Short Stories 1800-1849, where Edgar Allan Poe and Nathaniel Hawthorne wrote five of the dozen tales selected and the ghost story genre where Poe, Hawthorne and Irving collectively penned forty percent of tales in The Best Ghost Stories 1800-1849, American writers (apart from one) are sadly lacking from authorship of the vampire stories for this period as they are for the werewolf genre. The top purveyors in these genres all hail from Europe apart from a few limited exceptions.
    
This makes sense given the rise of vampire legends throughout Europe, especially countries touching the Carpathian and Harz Mountains. In the April 1819 issue of the New Monthly Magazine “The Vampyre; A Tale” was published as the first vampire short story originating in the English language. The ruminations of a plot for the story were constructed by Lord Byron; yet it was fleshed out and ultimately written by John Polidori, his physician, on a literary dare. Lord Byron, in turn, got the idea from tradition and folktales. The state of the vampire legend before this story was best laid out in an article published in The Monthly Review of May 1819:

“The superstition, on which the tale is founded, universally prevailed less than a century ago, throughout Hungary, Moravia, Silesia, and Poland; and the legends to which it gave rise were not only believed, but were made the subject of learned disputations by the divines and physicians of the times. In Dr. Henry More’s Philosophical Works, and in Calmet’s Dissertation on Apparitions, may be found many interesting particulars relating to this fancy; and in the latter is an ample account of its origin and progress. It was imagined that men, who had been dead for some time, rose out of their graves and sucked the blood of their neighbours, principally the young and beautiful: that these objects of their attack became pale and livid, and frequently died; while the vampyres themselves, on their graves being opened, were found as fresh as if they were alive, and their veins full of good and florid blood, which also issued from the nose, mouth, and ears, and even through the very pores of the skin. The only mode of arresting the pranks of these tormentors was by driving a stake through the heart of the vampyre; a practice frequently adopted, and during the performance of which, we are told, he uttered a horrid groan. The body was then burned, and the ashes thrown into the grave.”

In John Polidori’s foreword to “The Vampyre” we learn that much of the vampire legend bubbled up through poetry and European legend as did many of the tales found in The Best Werewolf Short Stories 1800-1849. Yet not all of them. In 1679 “The Blood-Drinking Corpse” was published from a posthumous collection by Pu Songling (1640-1715) titled Strange Stories from a Chinese Studio. He was an educator whose hobby, apparently, was to write down popular Chinese folktales. When he died he had collected nearly 500 of them. One of the first English translations was in 1913 and it can be presumed that none of the authors in this collection had access to it.

In response to “The Vampyre,” came the quick publication of “The Black Vampyre, a Legend of St. Domingo” by American, Robert Sands. And from there the vampire mythos fluttered off in the English language, darting from one short story to the next until in 1847 the novel Varney the Vampire, or the Feast of Blood was serialized in a London Penny Dreadful. Fifty years later the world received one of the best horror books ever written--Dracula by Bram Stoker.

From folktales to poetry to short stories to novels, the vampire mythos has developed into the robust, character-driven genre we have today—and it has done so with teeth. In my anthology are what I consider the best vampire short stories published in the first half of the nineteenth century in the English language. I hope you enjoy them.





#BestVampireStories #ClassicVampireStories #VampireShortStories

Monday, January 16, 2023

T7 by The Cure Unofficial Lyrics by Poet Andrew Barger


The Cure released Wish 30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition album on November 25, 2022. It includes 24 previously unreleased tracks. And all of Curedom did a little happy dance. Robert Smith admitted that he had difficulty with the words (poetry), resulting in many of the new tracks being instrumentals. This struck me as unfortunate for someone I believe to be one of the best living poets, of the one I have read. The words of “Lovesong,” from Disintegration are beautiful in their simplicity and immensely compelling. “Plainsong,” from the same album, is a sonnet by Robert Smith to his wife, Mary. Here are my thoughts on “Plainsong.” https://disintegrationnation-cureblog.blogspot.com/2022/01/poetry-by-robert-smith-of-cure-band.html


Wish 30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition has several instrumentals and one is “T7.” We will have to wait for Robert Smith to tell whether it means Track 7, which I assume it does. Below is a poem (unauthorized) I wrote to accompany the music of “T7” by The Cure.


T7


Climb on top. Make me feel important again, wanted again, relished again, fit again. Climb on top. Make me feel loved again, attractive again, physical again, loved again. Like nights of old. And then I will leave through the crimson door.



#songsfromalostworldlyrics #curelostworldlyrics #T7lyrics #T7RobertSmith #WishT7 #curenewalbumlyrics #robertsmithinstrumentals #thecureinstrumentals

Tuesday, January 10, 2023

The Raven in AI by Chat GPT

 

Best Horror Stories 1800-1849 Anthology

I asked Chat GPT to write a poem in the style of Edgar Allan Poe. This is what the artificial intelligence program produced. It is not surprising that it is a riff on "The Raven." "As the midnight clock struck four," is the most curious line of the bunch. AI is no Edgar Allan Poe, to no surprise! What do you think?


THE AI RAVEN

Once upon a midnight dreary,

As I pondered, weak and weary,

Over many a quaint and curious

Volume of forgotten lore,


While I nodded, nearly napping,

Suddenly there came a tapping,

As of someone gently rapping,

Rapping at my chamber door.


"'Tis some visitor," I muttered,

"Tapping at my chamber door -

Only this, and nothing more."


But the rapping, it grew louder -

Louder still, and ever louder,

Till I feared that it would shatter

All the silence of the night.


And at once, the door flew open,

And the raven, with a croak of "Nevermore",

Flew into the room with a flutter

And perched upon my bedpost with a cackle of delight.


I shuddered at the raven's presence,

And the ominous word it spoke,

For I knew my soul was haunted

By a sorrow I could not evoke.


And as the raven sat there staring,

With its beady eyes so black,

I knew that I would nevermore

Be free from the raven's haunting rack.


And so I sat there, weak and weary,

As the midnight clock struck four,

And the raven, with a croak of "Nevermore",

Reminded me of my sorrow evermore.


#TheRaven #TheRavenAI #EdgarAllanPoeAI #EdgarAllanPoePoem

Sunday, January 8, 2023

Edgar Allan Poe's "The Raven" Poem, an AI History

 


Edgar Allan Poe's "The Raven" is a poem that has stood the test of time, captivating readers and inspiring countless literary interpretations since its publication in 1845.

At its core, "The Raven" is a tale of loss and grief, narrated by a man who has lost his beloved Lenore. As he sits alone in his chamber, he is visited by a raven, who repeatedly utters the word "nevermore." The narrator becomes increasingly distressed by the raven's presence and its ominous message, leading him to question his own sanity.

One of the most striking aspects of "The Raven" is its use of language. Poe employs a variety of literary techniques, including alliteration, repetition, and internal rhyme, to create a sense of musicality and to enhance the overall mood of the poem. The use of the word "nevermore" as a refrain serves to heighten the narrator's sense of despair and isolation.

Another notable aspect of "The Raven" is its use of symbolism. The raven itself can be seen as a symbol of death and the narrator's inability to escape his grief. The chamber in which the narrator sits can be seen as a metaphor for his own mind, trapped in a cycle of grief and unable to move on.

In many ways, "The Raven" can be seen as a meditation on the human experience of loss and the ways in which we cope with it. It is a timeless work that continues to resonate with readers today.


"The Raven" by Edgar Allan Poe

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary, Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore— While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping, As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door. “’Tis some visitor,” I muttered, “tapping at my chamber door— Only this and nothing more.” Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December; And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor. Eagerly I wished the morrow;—vainly I had sought to borrow From my books surcease of sorrow—sorrow for the lost Lenore— For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore— Nameless here for evermore. And the silken, sad, uncertain rustling of each purple curtain Thrilled me—filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before; So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating “’Tis some visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door— Some late visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door;— This it is and nothing more.” Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer, “Sir,” said I, “or Madam, truly your forgiveness I implore; But the fact is I was napping, and so gently you came rapping, And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door, That I scarce was sure I heard you”—here I opened wide the door;— Darkness there and nothing more. Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing, Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before; But the silence was unbroken, and the stillness gave no token, And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, “Lenore?” This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, “Lenore!”— Merely this and nothing more. Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning, Soon again I heard a tapping somewhat louder than before. “Surely,” said I, “surely that is something at my window lattice; Let me see, then, what thereat is, and this mystery explore— Let my heart be still a moment and this mystery explore;— ’Tis the wind and nothing more!” Open here I flung the shutter, when, with many a flirt and flutter, In there stepped a stately Raven of the saintly days of yore; Not the least obeisance made he; not a minute stopped or stayed he; But, with mien of lord or lady, perched above my chamber door— Perched upon a bust of Pallas just above my chamber door— Perched, and sat, and nothing more. Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling, By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore, “Though thy crest be shorn and shaven, thou,” I said, “art sure no craven, Ghastly grim and ancient Raven wandering from the Nightly shore— Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night’s Plutonian shore!” Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.” Much I marvelled this ungainly fowl to hear discourse so plainly, Though its answer little meaning—little relevancy bore; For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being Ever yet was blessed with seeing bird above his chamber door— Bird or beast upon the sculptured bust above his chamber door, With such name as “Nevermore.” But the Raven, sitting lonely on the placid bust, spoke only That one word, as if his soul in that one word he did outpour. Nothing farther then he uttered—not a feather then he fluttered— Till I scarcely more than muttered “Other friends have flown before— On the morrow he will leave me, as my Hopes have flown before.” Then the bird said “Nevermore.” Startled at the stillness broken by reply so aptly spoken, “Doubtless,” said I, “what it utters is its only stock and store Caught from some unhappy master whom unmerciful Disaster Followed fast and followed faster till his songs one burden bore— Till the dirges of his Hope that melancholy burden bore Of ‘Never—nevermore’.” But the Raven still beguiling all my fancy into smiling, Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat in front of bird, and bust and door; Then, upon the velvet sinking, I betook myself to linking Fancy unto fancy, thinking what this ominous bird of yore— What this grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt, and ominous bird of yore Meant in croaking “Nevermore.” This I sat engaged in guessing, but no syllable expressing To the fowl whose fiery eyes now burned into my bosom’s core; This and more I sat divining, with my head at ease reclining On the cushion’s velvet lining that the lamp-light gloated o’er, But whose velvet-violet lining with the lamp-light gloating o’er, She shall press, ah, nevermore! Then, methought, the air grew denser, perfumed from an unseen censer Swung by Seraphim whose foot-falls tinkled on the tufted floor. “Wretch,” I cried, “thy God hath lent thee—by these angels he hath sent thee Respite—respite and nepenthe from thy memories of Lenore; Quaff, oh quaff this kind nepenthe and forget this lost Lenore!” Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.” “Prophet!” said I, “thing of evil!—prophet still, if bird or devil!— Whether Tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here ashore, Desolate yet all undaunted, on this desert land enchanted— On this home by Horror haunted—tell me truly, I implore— Is there—is there balm in Gilead?—tell me—tell me, I implore!” Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.” “Prophet!” said I, “thing of evil!—prophet still, if bird or devil! By that Heaven that bends above us—by that God we both adore— Tell this soul with sorrow laden if, within the distant Aidenn, It shall clasp a sainted maiden whom the angels name Lenore— Clasp a rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore.” Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.” “Be that word our sign of parting, bird or fiend!” I shrieked, upstarting— “Get thee back into the tempest and the Night’s Plutonian shore! Leave no black plume as a token of that lie thy soul hath spoken! Leave my loneliness unbroken!—quit the bust above my door! Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my door!” Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.” And the Raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door; And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon’s that is dreaming, And the lamp-light o’er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor; And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor Shall be lifted—nevermore!




#AndrewBarger.com #TheRaven #PoeRaven #EdgarAllanPoe


Wednesday, December 28, 2022

T6 by The Cure on wish Deluxe Album Lyrics (unofficial)


As Europe enjoyed The Cure’s Songs for a Lost World Tour, Robert Smith announced the forthcoming Wish 30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition album. It includes 24 previously unreleased tracks. And all of Curedom did a little happy dance. Robert Smith admitted that he had difficulty with the words (poetry), resulting in many of the new tracks being instrumentals. This struck me as unfortunate for someone I believe to be one of the best living poets, of the one I have read. The words of “Lovesong,” from Disintegration are beautiful in their simplicity and immensely compelling. “Plainsong,” from the same album, is a sonnet by Robert Smith to his wife, Mary. Here are my thoughts on “Plainsong.” https://disintegrationnation-cureblog.blogspot.com/2022/01/poetry-by-robert-smith-of-cure-band.html


Wish 30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition dropped on November 25, 2022. It has several instrumentals and one is “T6.” We will have to wait for Robert Smith to tell whether it means Track 6, which I assume it does. Below is a poem (unauthorized) I wrote to accompany the music of “T6” by The Cure.

 

T6


Wednesday is the wickedest of days.

Half way there, half way gone,

Just like you.


I knew it would always end.

You live down the block,

And are a thousand miles away now.


I need something to believe in,

A bit to believe in,

Since I no longer believe in your kiss.


#T6TheCure #T6WishDeluxe #WishDeluxeLyrics #T6 #T6RobertSmith #AndrewBarger.com


Sunday, December 18, 2022

The Goblins Who Stole a Sexton by Charles Dickens

When people think of Charles "Boz" Dickens (1812-1870) around Christmastime, they obviously think of "A Christmas Carol." It was published to much fanfare on December 14, 1843. Yet it is relatively unknown that seven years prior, Dickens published another scary ghost story for Christmas. The scary story was first published in 1836 and later appeared as Chapter 29 in The Pickwick Papers. The ghost story is both funny and horrific in parts, reminiscent of A Christmas Carol in this regard.

Charles Dickens

The name of the story is The Goblins Who Stole a Sexton and it is one of Dickens's best ghost stories. It followed in the grand English tradition of telling ghost stories around Christmastime. The protagonist is one Gabriel Grub, a "sexton and grave-digger" who is going about his business on Christmas Eve when horror strikes among the gravestones. I will let you read it for yourself.



#dickensghoststories #goblinwhostoleasexton #christmasghoststories #dickenschristmastales #dickensgoblins #DickensHolidayStories #AndrewBarger

Sunday, December 11, 2022

Lyrics to Miss Van Gogh by The Cure off Wish Deluxe 35th Anniversary Album (Unofficial)


As Europe is enjoying The Cure’s Songs for a Lost World Tour, Robert Smith announced the forthcoming
Wish 30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition album. It includes 24 previously unreleased tracks. And all of Curedom did a little happy dance. Robert Smith admitted that he had difficulty with the words (poetry), resulting in many of the new tracks being instrumentals. This struck me as unfortunate for someone I believe to be one of the best living poets, of the one I have read. The words of “Lovesong,” from Disintegration are beautiful in their simplicity and immensely compelling. “Plainsong,” from the same album, is a sonnet by Robert Smith to his wife, Mary. Here are my thoughts on “Plainsong.” https://disintegrationnation-cureblog.blogspot.com/2022/01/poetry-by-robert-smith-of-cure-band.html


Wish 30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition dropped on November 25, 2022. It has several instrumentals and one is “Miss Van Gogh.” We will have to wait for Robert Smith to tell whether it is about a female in the Van Gogh family or a person who is missing Van Gogh, the famous impressionist artist.


Below is a poem (unauthorized) I wrote to accompany the music of “Miss Van Gogh” by The Cure.


Miss Van Gogh Stars and moon, Neptune and “Ulalume,” I will see you soon. Yet you never return. You don’t belong here. You don’t belong here anymore. You have never belonged here. Dissolve away now, My effervescent one. To the gaudy side of nowhere. They don’t understand you. You don’t belong here. You don’t belong here anymore. You have never belonged here. Blues and greens, Swirls and whorls, Burst on the scene. You will never return. You don’t belong here. You don’t belong here anymore. You have never belonged here.



#WishSongs #WishDeluxeSongs #WishTheCure #WishDeluxeAnniversary

#MissVanGoghCure #MissVenGoghSong #MissVanGoghLyics

Friday, November 25, 2022

The Ghostly Visiter; or, The Mysterious Invalid - A Review


On February 27, 1833 a horrific ghost story was published by the title The Ghostly Visiter; or, The Mysterious Invalid. The scary story was printed anonymously in The Penny Story-Teller, a British pulp magazine that came out every Wednesday.


The Penny Story-Teller and others were called "penny dreadfuls" given their cheap price and the frightening tales contained within their pages. In these pages is where horror short stories first took root in the UK. "The Ghostly Visiter" is one of the finest examples of a ghost story to come out of these magazines. Despite its horror, it did not rise to the level of the Top 10 ghost stories from 1800-1849, which are contained in The Best Ghost Stories.


#GhostlyVisiter #BestGhostStories #ClassicGhostStories #VintageGhosts #ScaryShortStories #PennyDreadfuls 

Saturday, November 12, 2022

Facts About Lady Eleanor's Mantle by Nathaniel Hawthorne

 

Nathaniel Hawthorne

 Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864) was no stranger when it came to telling a scary ghost story. His "Legends of the Province House" was mentioned as being exemplary by H.P. Lovecraft and his 1835 story titled "Graves and Goblins" is quite good. But this post is about Lady Eleanor's Mantle, which is one of the scary ghost stories for the first half of the nineteenth century. Without giving away too much, the horror story contains an insane person and is well worth a read on a moonlit night. It was published just time for the holidays in December 1838.

Lady Eleanor's Mantle by Nathaniel Hawthorne

"Lady Eleanor's Mantle" is a ghostly tale of pestilence and because of that it draws certain parallels to Edgar Allan Poe's "Mask of the Red Death," which is included in my rbook: The Best Ghost Stories 1800-1849: A Classic Ghost Anthology. Which came first? Hawthorne beat Poe by 3.5 years. Enjoy.  


#HawthorneStory #LadyEleanorsMantle #HawthorneGhostStory #HawthorneHorror #NathanielHawthorne

Sunday, October 30, 2022

Interview with Andrew Barger on The Best Vampire Stories 1800-1849 Anthology


As Halloween approaches, Andrew answers questions about The Best Vampire Stories 1800-1849: A Classic Vampire Anthology


Interview with Andrew Barger

Q1. Why did you focus on the first half of the 19th century for your first vampire anthology?
A1. I knew the first vampire short story written in the English language was "The Vampyre" by John Polidori. He published it in 1819. There was obviously fresh dirt, so to speak, for this period and I started digging. I wanted to start from the beginning just as I did with The Best Horror Short Stories 1800-1849,The Best Werewolf Short Stories 1800-1849 and The Best Ghost Stories 1800-1849.

Q2. Did you unearth anything of note in vampire lore?

A2. Yes. I was surprised to find the first vampire short story penned by an American that has remained buried for nearly two centuries. It was published only months after Polidori's tale. It was titled "The Black Vampyre" and was published under a pseudonym by a Columbia University Law School graduate. In the book I demonstrate who the actual author was as background to the story. From my research it is also the first short story to advocate freedom for black slaves and to contain a child vampire.

Q3. That is substantial. So you include background information on each story in the collection?

A3. Also author photos, publication dates and a list of stories read at the end of the book.  In the print version I include annotations like I did with the other books.

Q4. You stated that in your estimation Edgar Allan Poe wrote one third of the best horror stories for the fifty years in question. Did 
Edgar Allan Poe write any vampire stories?
A4. There is much speculation about this. Some assert "Ligeia" and "Berenice" are vampire stories but I dispel this in the Introduction: "With Teeth." In my view Poe did not pen a vampire tale. It is also of note that neither Nathaniel Hawthorne nor Washington Irving wrote a vampire story, either.

Q5. Who are some of the more famous authors in the vampire anthology?

A5. I mentioned John Polidori, Lord Byron's traveling doctor. Alexander Dumas, Joseph le Fanu and Théophile Gautier all have stories in the collection.

Q6. Do you have a favorite?

A6. "Clarimonde" by Gautier is the foremost thing of its kind. Of course Gautier had the advantage of all the great stories that came before his.

Q7. The strangest name has to be "Pepopukin in Corsica." How did you come across it?

A7. It was published in an old magazine in 1826. It is just the third vampire story originally published in the English language. It has not been republished since. The author was not given, only the initials A.Y. I was able to learn that it was Arthur Young who wrote a number of travel books based in France. "Pepopukin in Corsica" is the first vampire story to include poetry.

Q8. Didn't Polidori write "The Vampyre" in response to a bet by Mary Shelley? 

A8. There's a story within a story on that one. Mary Shelley, Percy Shelley, Lord Byron and John Polidori challenged one another to write a ghost story. Mary ultimately wrote Prometheus Unbound (that we know now as Frankenstein) and Lord Byron penned a fragment of a vampire story that he never finished. Polidori used the outline and wrote "The Vampyre." It is little known that Polidori put Lord Byron in "The Vampyre" after they had had a falling out. Lord Byron is the vampire himself. He called him Lord Ruthven in the story. I lay out the many similarities between Lord Byron and Lord Ruthven in the background. It's fascinating stuff.

Q9. Another popular vampire story is "Wake Not the Dead."

A9. It was first published in English in 1823 and miss-attributed to Ludwig Tieck. Ernst Raupach is the true author.

Q10. Did you unearth any misconceptions in doing your research?
A10.  Varney the Vampire, or the Feast of Blood, published in 1847 as a serialized Penny Dreadful was the first vampire novel. Bram Stoker's Dracula was not the first, as many people believe.

#BestVampireStories #ClassicVampires #VintageVampires #ClassicVampireStories #VintageVampireStories #VampireHorror #BestVampireShortStories