Here is a Gather interview with Shawn P. Mahoney about his thrilling vampire novel, Slayer Team Alpha.
Sy Garte, in a Gather review, said (in part): "This book rocks. The people are real, you can see them, and you feel for them. The action is great, and will keep you glued to the page."
Q) Shawn, Tell us about your thrilling vampire novel.
A) My book is called Slayer Team Alpha. It centers around a character named Noah Blizzard. Noah is a Navy Seal Commander that is seduced into leading a group of vampire slayers by "the church". His team consists of an over sexed FBI Dr of Forensics (Caroline Jameson), an NYPD sniper, an Army Ranger, a Green Beret medic, a Marine Corps. Chaplin, an SAS Commando, and an IRA terrorist (Yep that's right an IRA terrorist). The team soon discovers their main weapon silver has become obsolete. It seems the vampires have become addicted to a drug that makes them immune to silver for up to twelve hours. Things get really weird when they find out a major Pharmaceutical company is manufacturing the drug.
Q) Where can it be found?
Q) What kind of monsters are your vampires? We now know that silver is (was?) a weapon that destroyed them. What other "vampire rules" apply to them?
A) They are basically traditional vampires. They are not fond of wooden stakes, holy water, or garlic.
Q) Does your novel exist in a world of good and evil, God and the Devil (does the Chaplin have an important part?) or is the vampire more a creature of nature (and chemicals)? Or both?
A) Yes there is definitely good and evil in the book. I feel that Father Whitaker (the Chaplin) plays an important part but probably not the one that you would think. The vampires are both demonic and chemical.
Q) What do the Vampires want? Where did they all come from?
A) They want what all vampires want, sex, drugs, and world domination. (lol) They come from their mommy and daddy vampires.
Q) Does anybody get to have sex?
Q) What interests you about "the vampire" as a monster?
A) The thing that interests me most about vampires as a monster is they are so much like you and me. A vampire could pass you in the street or sit next to you in a movie theater and you'd never know. There is also the cool factor of being immortal and the sexy mythology of vampires that draws the imagination to them.
A) The scariest book I ever read was Salem's Lot. Since the day I read it I wanted to write a vampire novel.
Q) How long did this novel take you to write?
A) It took me about a year.
Q) Did any of your characters evolve in unplanned ways as the novel was written?
A) Sure, that's half the fun of writing a book for me. I develop the characters and then let them tell me the story.
Q) Did you map out the plot - or did you make it up as you went along?
A) A little of both. I had a general idea of what I wanted to write but as the characters took on lives of their own that changed things for me.
Q) Did you have a writing routine or discipline?
A) I like to write in the middle of the night while everyone else is sleeping. You'll probably find this strange but I write my entire first draft out long hand before typing it.
Q) Were you ever a vampire for Halloween?
A) Yes, I won first prize at a Halloween party for my vampire costume.
Q) Was there ever a famous genre author who inspired you to want to write?
A) There is a huge list. I would say that the person that most inspired me to write would have to be Stephen King.
Q) The book cover art is so cool - what's the story behind that (who did it?)
A) The cover design is actually a combination of two different designs that I submitted to my publisher. They gave them to a freelance artist, I am embarrassed to say I don't remember her name at the moment. She took the two designs and merged them creating the cover as it is now. I was absolutely thrilled with the design. I am planning on asking my publisher to get her for my next book.
Q) Your next book? What can you tell us so far about your next book?
A) The working title of my next book is Blood Oath. It is about a vampire named Silas Ash who get into it with the Philadelphia Mob. The story centers around Vincent Carlucci the head of the Carlucci crime family and Silas Ash. It's a much darker story line then Slayer Team Alpha. The rough 1st draft of chapter 1 is posted here on gather.