"Hi, this is Anne Rice. It's July 4th, 2002, a gorgeous day in New Orleans. My mind is just sizzling. Don't think I don't know that I haven't lived up to the challenge of this messagemachine. I haven't left enough messages in the last year and a half. I find it very hard to come out here and speak extemporaneously into the machine. I feel that's over now and my mind is just sizzling with ideas. I can't tell you how much energy I have. And in these periods of high energy, I want to talk and I want to create.
I do have a new novel coming out in the fall. Let me answer that question right away. The name of it is "Blackwood Farm". It'll be published at the end of October. It's a vampire chronicle and it is all about a young vampire by the name of Quinn. It's his story and I hope he'll become a regular member of the vampire chronicles from here on. I hope you guys will like him. But I am already into my next book which I hope to have written before I go on tour. And again, my brain is just sizzling with ideas.
Of course I have been shocked by all kinds of current
events. Who couldn't be shocked by 9-11. Who couldn't be
torn apart by the spectacle of it. I saw it live on TV. It
was incredible, it still is incredible. We're all still
living through it. It seems to happen over and over and
over again. I have been shocked by the pedophelia scandal
in the Catholic church. I have been amazed reading the New
York Times, to see this thing unfold. But for me what it
has precipitated is a tremendous amount of reading about
the church. I went back to the church in 1998. I was
reconciled with the church and I did a kind of violence to
my mind. Maybe a blessed violence, maybe a divine violence,
but definitely a violence. I did a violence to my
creativity. I have written two books since then, three
books actually, "Merrick", "Blood and
Gold" and "Blackwood Farm". But my mind is
still undergoing some sort of Synthesis. And when the
pedophelia scandal broke, what amazed me besides the
suffering of the victims, the terrible suffering and the
apologies that ought to be made and which have been made
and should continue to be made, was also the fact that I
just didn't know much about the contemporary church. And
so I began reading. I have read
the biography on Pope John Paul II. I have read the biography of Paul VI. I have ordered books on the Vatican II council and I have been studying my church and studying the theology and I have gone back to an idea which I had totally sacrificed.
I think after my tour this year I am going to write my autobiography of Jesus Christ. I think I see a way now to do that book. I had forsaken it when I was reconciled with the church. I felt too way cramped by dogma. I no longer feel that way. I feel a highly creative way to do this book. But it is not the book I am working on now. I am in Lestat's voice now
But I don't know where it will take me. It is a very free flowing book. "Blackwood Farm" is that way too. It's a highly energetic narrative. It takes place in Louisiana and it's kind of like "The Witching Hour" in that all kinds of family history is in it and all kinds of secrets and ghosts. And I just loved writing "Blackwood Farm". I wrote most of it at the beach and the light and the water have a tremendous effect on me. And when I'm at my beach condo I don't even go down to the sand. I just stay up there bathing in the light. I work all day on my book and then I go out and read the Bible on the deck and I know what many of you are thinking that probably this is the end of me as a sensuous writer and the end of me as a transgressive writer but I don't think that is true. I do think I will come out of the closet as a Catholic writer. But I think I'll come out as a radical Catholic writer and I am not sure yet what all that will mean.
Meantime, I am getting letters from you and I am
getting phone messages and I like that. I like that very
much and keep that up. And I
will go on tour in the fall. I don't know the cities yet. They are not final but I certainly will be in New York. I'll have a signing of some sort in New Orleans, probably go to the West Coast, probably Los Angeles and I'll surely go to Miami. But beyond that I am not sure what else is going to happen.
I am going to try to give you more frequent messages. This message will of course will be transcribed by my assistant and will be put on www.annerice.com. Www.annerice.com has just been totally renovated by the Corbitts, that wonderful family that takes care of the site for us. And you are most welcome to tune in to www.annerice.com. Thanks to my cousin, Danny Manning, it's got that simple name, annerice.com. We wouldn't be able to get that name now. Danny set it up many years ago.
Anyway, I hope you guys are happy. All of you who are writing, keep the faith, keep the faith. I have been through some pretty dark periods since I went into that diabetic coma in 1998. By the way, it was right after I went back to the church, interestingly enough. It was like two weekends later that I went into the coma. But in any event, I have come out of those dark periods and the sun is shining again and I feel highly energetic. I love you all. I miss seeing you. Take care. Keep the faith. Bye Bye."
"Hi there guys, this is Anne Rice. It's July 19th 2002. It's a gorgeous day here in New Orleans, I don't have the slightest idea what the temperature is out there; I just know it's scorching.
I've been writing since about...gosh 8:00 I guess. I started to read and then I started to write. I'm having a ball (laughing). I'm writing another Southern novel with my vampires again. I wanted to tell you just a little bit more about BLACKWOOD FARM, the book that's coming out this October. BLACKWOOD FARM is really one of those big family novels all about the Blackwood family. Quinn Blackwood becomes a vampire and he refuses to leave his family...the Blackwoods. And they are quite an amazing bunch and they live in this huge house, called Blackwood Manor; and it's on a huge piece of land that also includes a strip of swamps called Sugar Devil Swamps, and it's actually venturing into that swamp which is the cause of his downfall. But anyway, I'm very excited about that book. It's a very living thing to me. I'm still making new tiny editions to it as it goes to press, practically. They're sending me the galleys and I'm adding teeny little things to it even while I speak. I love the character. I love the character Quinn, he's 23 years old....no actually I think he's 24 by now. And the book is dedicated to my son Christopher Rice, only. It's one of the few books that just has a solitary dedication.
And meanwhile; speaking of Christopher, he just got a contract for his 3rd novel, and he's planning on taking a trip to Asia this year. I'm so proud of him. I'm so proud of his writing. My sister Alice Borchardt published a book called THE DRAGON QUEEN this year, that did very well. That's...gosh, I guess her fifth novel. So we're really a writing family.
Anyway that's what going on here. Immersion. Immersion in writing. Insulation from the heat outside by walking around this great big house with the air conditioning churning and the 18 inch think walls keeping us cool. I'm getting ready to take off to the beach to really get into this novel I'm writing now...which I don't have a title for, and I will probably finish it in about a month, and then I'll come back and get ready to go on tour in the fall and get ready to see you guys. I'm enjoying listening to your messages, by the way. I do get every single message you leave. I read them all, which are transcribed by my assisiant.
Oh, let me tell you about THE WITCHING HOUR. You've been asking me alot about that one. THE WITCHING HOUR is going to be a primetime series on NBC. It will be 12 hours. It's being written by John Wilder, who did a fabulous job adapting FEAST OF ALL SAINTS. We have a whole team...Mark Wolper is the producer, John Wilder is the writer, I'm a producer, my beloved Ross is a producer Jennifer O'Conner, our contact person at NBC, is simply wonderful. We've had our first meeting down here in New Orleans, we're hoping to shoot in New Orleans. John is a very faithful adapter. He understands your feelings and mine. He's a very faithful adapter. It's going to be a wonderful adventure. If we shoot early next year, I don't know if we'll be Fall 2003; I don't know, I'm not sure, but it could be Fall 2003, it could actually be. It could actually come out in the fall. Twelve hours on t.v. in primetime on NBC and then of course it will probably have a life in dvd, also. But twelve hours for the three books of THE WITCHING HOUR. I guess they are already thinking about who they want to cast. I mean this is a wonderful experience.
Well listen, I'm going to go guys. Leave me a message. I love you very much. Take care. Those of you who are writing, keep the faith...all of you keep the faith! I love you, I love you...Bye Bye."