Friday, 24 June 1887

Wendell Howe: I've heard that, in addition to your work with Henry Irving, you are somewhat of a writer.

Bram Stoker: I've dabbled a bit, yes. A few short stories. I've only written one novel, The Primrose Path, and one piece on Irish law.

WH: That was 12 years ago, correct? Any plans to write more novels?

BS: I am working on something right now, actually.

WH: Really? Do you mind if I ask what it's about?

BS: It's about the political climate in Ireland as seen through a troubled romance between an English landlord and a Celtic peasant.

WH: Oh.

BS: Is something wrong?

WH: Oh, no. That sounds very interesting. It's only that I'd heard that your short stories were of a more fantastical nature. And I wondered if you were thinking of writing anything more in that, er, vein.

BS: Oh those stories were just flights of fancy. No one would read an entire novel of such imaginings.

WH: But what about The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde?

BS: The picture of who? I don't believe Oscar's ever mentioned such a work. I can't even fathom him writing a novel. Plays are his strength.

WH: You're absolutely right. I can't imagine what I must have been thinking of. Perhaps I should be going.

BS: Now that you mention it, I was just a moment ago considering writing something to do with--oh never mind.

WH: With what?

BS: No no, it's much too silly.

WH: I'm sure it's not. Please do tell.

BS: Well, a young Texan just told me a tale of a vampire bat and, well, the idea just took hold.

WH: I see.

BS: I've always had a bit of a fascination with the macabre. As a sickly lad my mother entertained me greatly with ghost stories. I really must go find that Mr. Morris and ask him for some more details.

WH: That sounds like an excellent idea. It was a pleasure speaking with you. I shall not delay you any longer.