Raziel Nite decided as a kid that he wanted to become a vampire. He has since devoted his life to emulating these mythical beings, complete with blood-drinking, surgical fang implants and an entirely nocturnal existence. If you're intrigued by the nosferatu lifestyle, here are some personal tips from Raziel to guide you down a darker path.
We spoke to the enigmatic Sydneysider for the launch of Dracula Untold which is out now on DVD, Blu-ray and digital. We asked Raziel to share a little about his unusual lifestyle choice as well as any advice he can offer like-minded children of the night.
According to Raziel, there are a large number of people currently living as vampires in Australia. For most, it's just an extension of goth culture or cool "outsider" posturing. But for Raziel and a handful of others, being a vampire is serious business.
"I've known since the age of four that I was different and I wanted to be a vampire," he explained to Lifehacker. "It’s not so much that the lifestyle appeals to me, more that this is who I am. For the majority of other vampires this knowledge and awareness happens during puberty, around the age of 14."
Raziel never goes out in the daytime, which can make socialising rather difficult. To get around this, he runs a Facebook page and meet-up groups for "vampires" based in Sydney which allows them to congregate during the witching hour in a safe and accepting environment. Even so, it can still be a fairly lonely existence.
"It's getting increasingly difficult to find other vampires in Sydney," Raziel admits. "People can be shy about their lifestyles and there’s also a growing trend in younger people being enticed by the vampire world but it’s often a fleeting interest."
According to Raziel, social butterfly/bat vamps based in Sydney might be better off travelling interstate. Apparently, Brisbane is particularly well known for having a large vampire community.
As you'd expect, getting used to a reversed sleeping schedule can also take some getting used to. To make life easier, Raziel recommends investing in dark, thick blinds and curtains to block out the sunlight. [Lifehacker tip: try covering your windows in aluminum foil.]
"Once your body gets into the habit of sleeping during the day it becomes quite normal and commonplace," Raziel said. "I've also always had jobs that require night work, so it’s become a way of life."
I can personally attest that working night shifts gives you the ghostly complexion favoured by Ann Rice's favourite subject. (You can find additional advice on reversing your sleeping cycle here, here and here.)
If you're keen to dabble in the undead lifestyle, Raziel urges you to wet your toes first by meeting up with people who already live as vampires.
"These people can offer the best insights into how you can live among others easily. They can also explain the diet and where you can meet people," Raziel explained. Getting properly acquainted with critically-acclaimed vampire fiction can also provide a good primer -- although we'd strongly advice against reenacting anything you read or see.
Unless you're looking to emulate the titular vegan vampire from Count Duckula, you're going to have to get used to the taste of the red stuff. If you find the idea of drinking blood repugnant, the vampire lifestyle probably isn't for you.
"A big part of my diet is blood, both human and animal," Raziel explains. "I purchase animal blood from the butcher and sometimes have a donor: a person who is willing to provide me with blood.
"It's important to have human blood tested before you drink it for safety. Also, don't drink too much blood at once!"
Odd Jobs is an occasional Lifehacker column looking at unusual career paths and lifestyle choices.