Hey guys! I thought I might try something new for my NaNoWriMo this year and - as the title suggests - was looking for some potential struggles of a freshly turned vampire aside from the “battle of morals vs nature.”
Their entire body has changed from omnivore to blood-nivore. I suppose that’d hurt. And the increased senses (sight, scent, smell) would be attacking a vampire’s poor brain as they don’t know how to block it out
watch the Twilight movies or read the books if you aren’t feeling lazy. It’ll probably help.
If you’re talking traditional vampires, I would have personally written a lot not on morals but the fact that we find blood disgusting and now the character has to drink it, probably explore on if blood actually tastes good for them or if it’s just a necessity they have to get used to. The tastes of blood from different humans or animals. How it feels to now have it in your stomach. The pain from sun light is already a lot to write about, not being able to be in the sun for a time would be a struggle one can write pages of pages on. Forgetting that you’re now a vampire and continuing with human habits will be another struggle. Can they still eat human food in your story? Will the character crave it? Learning the new rules of the vampire society, adapting to it, recognizing who you can and cannot mess with, what kills you, what you should avoid will be a lot to take in. I’d think of it as culture shock. Whatever a traveler struggles at in a new country will be experienced, I imagine, on top of everything else.
Twilight may not be the best example for good vampire lore
and why is that my good sir?
-having to remember to check the weather forecast for sunlight
-having to deal with sunblocking things like sunscreen, thick clothing, hats, umbrellas etc. questions about price, where to buy them from, how to fend of strangers from asking questions about (e.g. research umbrellas and pretend they have a penchant for collecting those), also general mannerisms with those (e.g. how to walk with an umbrella in nature, how to wear clothing that covers skin without looking weird)
-a lot of fear around people finding out. think of it like a spy in enemy territory, i imagine freshly turned vampires may be less concerned with ‘restraining urges to bite and drink human blood’ (which may not be that strong at first) but more concerned with ‘oh god, i hope no one aroun dme is knowledgable about vampire lore and figures it out’. immense worry and fear is someone questions their weird habits too much like umbrellas or clothing.
-also, i imagine maybe vampires would be brainstorming ways to attack someone/make them lose their memory/leave if someone figures them out. like if someone asks them ‘why do you always have that umbrella’ the vampire would try to answer normally whilst thinking about attacking this person as a last ditch effort if they say ‘are you a vampire’ next with a lot of fear and paranoia and stuff
-also existential feelings of ‘me vs them’, acknowledgement and realisation that theyre a different species. maybe emotional distance from humans, or shedding their human identity (e.g. not talking to people they used to know, thinking ‘im not like them anymore i cant talk to them’ etc)
-maybe trying to find some spare space to practice their vampire powers, or increased curiosity with those in the first few days/weeks/months and strugging to find time/space for it
-struggle to find more knowledge about it
-struggle to find a fellow vampire/older/mentor vampire they could ask for help
-struggles with immortality
-struggles of wondering whether theyre a ‘good’ vampire or ‘bad’ vampire, whether theyll use their newfound powers for good or bad
Maybe how to integrate into already existing vampire society if it exists in your story?
Senses first of all, as a vampire would have heightened senses. The vampire would get irritated by bright lights, loud sounds, and the smell of blood.
Then it would be dealing with the fact that they’re technically dead. There may be a lack of blood, causing the whole body to become lighter than they’re used to.
And if vampires have special powers, then they’d overwhelm the character. Maybe the vampire can hear people’s thoughts all around, or feel the souls of the dead wandering about him, or feel being controlled by a master vampire.
I think a lot of struggles would come from the life your MC was living Before, and how those might conflict with After.
If your MC used to be a lifeguard, and “turning” made him / her sensitive to sun? They’re not coming back to work. Will your MC need to keep earning money, if this is in a modern / capitalist society? Relations with friends and family could be upset completely depending upon the transformation, and the requirements / ADL (activities of daily living) that your MC’s “new self” has to observe to survive - that new set of instincts, new hungers, new food sources, new schedules - and new weaknesses that didn’t affect your mortal MC (an example from the traditional Vamp rulebook - garlic - guy tries to play it straight and meet a friend at Olive Garden and ends up having an allergic reaction that nearly closes his / her airway : ) )
I decided a while ago that once I get to my rewrites I’ll add that my vampires carry around umbrellas wherever they go because oh the aesthetic
Confusion, pre-existing internal organs needing to adjust to a new blood-only diet, a brain developing and learning how to function as a vampire, needing to keep being a vampire as a secret, not accidentally biting their tongue with newly fangs that they aren’t used to.etc
Finding a good food source, getting used to having supernatural strength/speed, getting into vampire culture such as all the good bars
Struggling how to find a consistent food source without getting caught. Having to find a human who will be their ‘Renfield.’ Deciding where they’ll live now and what they’ll sleep in.
Imprinting…the fact that Bella had a whole family to guide her through her change…probably that XD overall flat characters don’t let you know how she felt and reacted during it other than “ME BELLA HULK MODE!”
If you want some good inspiration on freshly turned Vampires, the series “The Mortal Rules” by Julie Kagawa, addresses it throughout. Even though the premise of the book is not traditional, it sticks to a lot of vampire tropes and it’s really good for showing a complete transition, even with the MC trying time blend in with humans XD
But mostly, anything I struggle with on daily from being Welsh and Autistic is a great idea of what a Vampire goes through :
-sunlight aversion and having to check the weather so you don’t burn to death
-probably lots of moodiness, cause they’re now dead.
Then there’s the whole no eating thing except for blood.
‘Renfield’ - oh hell yes.
Oooh that’s nice too! I love pretty umbrellas haha, gives you an excuse for looking them up aye? Best of luck with your vampire story!
Enough answers on here, but in case someone is looking through this thread for ideas:
Think of how we go through puberty. Our bodies change in shape and size and maybe we get a spurt in strength that we can’t control (like when mom or dad accuse you of slamming the door). Then same can be with things like heightened senses and super strength and speed. Have them adjust but not too easily to their newfound powers.
– Also with this, any physical changes? Do they get their fangs immediately or do they come in a few days/weeks/months/years later (like how we lose our baby teeth and our adult teeth come through)? Or maybe your vampires don’t have fangs and instead make an incision with their nails or a sharp object and drink from the open wound.
Your vampire’s gonna want to have blood or whatever it is they feed off of (if we’re going unconventional). The extremes of this in my opinion are not accepting the fact they have to drink blood regardless of source, or they can’t control their intake and attack everything in sight.
– Can your vampires take in solid food or can they only consume blood? If they can only consume blood, then you’re looking at how they react when they eat a pizza.
Adjusting to being out only a night may be something of a struggle especially if your character is a morning person or likes to go to bed early. It doesn’t have to be limited to vampires burning in the sun but if you have vampires that can withstand it, this can be applied to something like keeping to the shadows to keep vampire existence on the down-low.
Overall, think of how your character’s life was before they became a vampire and what changes in their life would they have to make after they’ve turned.