by Joan Sween
When "Transylvania Nasty" collides with "Minnesota Nice" the outcome is hilarious. In this novel, which is definitely intended for laughs, not chills, Erleen and Louise, antiques dealers from the land of Garrison Keillor, come back from a buying trip to Romania to discover they got more than they bargained for.
"We can't be vampires! There's no such thing as vampires!"
"I absolutely refuse to go all crazy and look mean and bite people!"
"How are we supposed to put on makeup if we can't see ourselves in mirrors?"
After the first shock, they begin to cope like sensible down-to-earth Minnesotans, vowing to lead normal lives, never reveal what they are, and never ever to bite anyone. Then they stumble onto a bank robbery, a murder, and a kidnapping. Attempting to free their kidnapped friends, they confront a Norwegian crime lord whose Colombian partners decide they are witches—"Brujas! Brujas! But after putting ineffectual bullets through the ladies, the Colombians change their minds—"Vampiro!" Reluctantly, Erleen and Louise realize they must behave like "real" vampires in order to put a stop to an international drug ring. Which they do—but without ever biting anyone.
In Joan's pre-teen years, she wrote short stories about fairies, and learned to play the piano accordion. Her father was a construction engineer; they moved a lot. The accordion was easier to move than a piano. As a teenager in high school she was in the class plays and wrote pep skits. Pep skits taught her about mystery writing–the home team, like justice, always had to triumph. In college she was in a multitude of plays, wrote poetry, edited the college newspaper, and got engaged 16 times.
She credits her wacky rites of passage as excellent background for writing a novel about perfectly nice ladies who refuse to behave like vampires She's a member of Sisters In Crime, former Regional Vice-president of Literary Managers & Dramaturgs of the Americas, and founder of Minnesota Writers’ Alliance. Her other books can be found on Amazon.com and her plays with Eldridge Plays & Musicals. Joan lives in Rochester, MN, with two cats who are exasperating and a husband who is wonderfully supportive.
Feb 10-12, 2012, premiere of Joan's play, "The Magic Flounder," produced by Matchbox Children's Theatre in the Historic Paramount Theatre, Austin, MN.
May, 2012, book signing sponsored by Minnesota's antiques newspaper, The Old Times at the Prime Promotions Antique Show at the St. Paul State Fairgrounds. Exact date TBA.
Plays may be found by searching at: http://www.histage.com/