We’re so excited to have the lovely Molly Harper on XOXO After Dark today! In The Dangers of Dating a Rebound Vampire, the next book in Molly’s beloved Half Moon Hollow paranormal romance series, Gigi starts her first job (at Vampire Headquarters), gets over her first love, and may even fall for her first vampire! Keep reading to hear about her own inspiration for Gigi’s workplace misadventures…

In THE DANGERS OF DATING A REBOUND VAMPIRE, Gigi Scanlon gets a rough introduction to the professional world. Of course, she’s working as a computer programmer for the World Council for the Equal Treatment of the Undead, so it was never going to be a picnic with fluffy kittens and rainbows.

Gigi is all grown up and eager to prove she is more than just little sister of Iris Scanlon (THE CARE AND FEEDING OF STRAY VAMPIRE). She is also eager to get the name of the mysterious vampire who followed her around during her recent Christmas break in the Hollow…. who also happens to be the vampire who accosts her outside of her office on her first night of work.

Nik Dragomirov is an old friend of Gigi’s vampire-in-law, Cal. Old as in “used to sack cities and drain them dry together” old.  And while he finds Gigi fascinating and sweet, he cannot remember meeting her before, much less following her. And he definitely doesn’t remember attacking her on her first night of work.

All of this amounts to a very shaky start to Gigi’s career. And you might ask, what would you know of workplace stress, you, who works from home while wearing pajama pants?  Well, before I was able to retire from my full-time office job, my own work history has combined elements of “World’s Dirtiest Jobs” and “The Office.”

I worked in an ice cream factory, regularly standing in a sticky puddle of once-dairy goo that kept me from eating frozen treats for two years. I wrote obituaries for an entire summer. I once sat through a meeting where my boss asked me, “So what is it, exactly, that you do here?”

Emotionally traumatic as some of these experiences were, I have used some of it in my characters’ employment. Some of Gigi’s workplace misadventures are highly fictionalized versions of my own bad office days. But I won’t say which ones. Because lawsuits.

In my time in a formal office setting, I discovered I am not good at dealing with other people’s little habits.  Do not clip your toenails at your desk.  Just NO. I am not good biting my tongue when I find that someone left their dirty dishes in the breakroom sink or stole my lunch from the fridge.  And I am definitely not good at dealing with rampaging supervisors. I freeze up like a gazelle in a nature special.

So it’s probably better for me that I work from home. I still keep regular hours. In fact, I probably work more now than I did at my office jobs.  I am still professional and expect professional behavior out of the people I interact with. But work is a lot more fun when you get to wear pajama pants.