People always ask "how much of what you write is based on experience?" And no matter how fantastic the story I've created, they always manage to be astounded when I tell them, no matter the tale, every single story has some element based on something I've lived through or someone I've encountered. Or even better, on something that really has happened.
Why is that? Life is nothing more than art imitating life imitating art - so why not add another imitation layer?
Take for instance Night Lights. Two different types of vampires from two different worlds: one the Philippine berbalang, the other the traditional Nosferatu we all know and love. Then there are the characters who set the stage... Of course our lovers, Rizal Malihim and Maggie Thawley, are completely fictitious, but their parents - her dear daddy the Reverend Thawley and his the tribal leader - very real. Then there is the leader of the expedition, Sir Joseph, the learned scholar following the crazed letter of another learned man, Skertcherley, also very real, into the wilds of Cagayan, searching for the berbalangs, an account that has been well document. All in all a very real account. And the Nosferatu? Why it just wouldn't do to have a fake vampire of any kind populating this story! In the 1800s there were rumors of a man with glowing eyes wearing a black cape and a top hat haunting a specific graveyard... a man that had a "draining" effect on young women, shall we say.
Now, let's leave things at that, should anyone decide to read my twisty vampire story all on their own, just to see how much is real and how much is fantasy. No real vampires? I think I may have found two and conspired, in my way, to put them together.