I have yet to read the two most acclaimed names in Vampire Fiction - Bram Stoker and Anne Rice - so I do not even think that I am an expert on Vampires. I have however read several vampire books - mostly from this century - and therefore have picked up on some of the differences between Vampires of different authors.
Vampires and the sun
In the Southern Vampire Series - Vampires are pretty much old fashioned - they cannot be exposed to the sun or they will die. In the House of Night - the light of the sun bothers Vamps, but does not let them perish. In The Vampire Diaries vamps with Lapis Lazuli on them are daywalkers. And in Twilight, Vampires avoid the sun, because they sparkle. Interesting how it varies, isn't it?
Vampires and their diet
Traditionally Vampires fed off of humans, but the new breed of Vampires a la Twilight and Vampire Diaries can choose to be vegetarian. Makes them more endearing, doesn't it?
Mind Control and Mind Reading
Glamouring, mind control, suggestion - all things are possible by some Vampires. I love how the Cullen's have different skills, and how depending on how strong a Vampire you are how (determined by your diet ofcourse) your influence over humans can change.
So from Stefan and Damon Salvatore to Edward and Jasper Cullen and further on to Eric and Bill - Vampires are as different as people are. Here's to learning more about those lovable Vamps, and perhaps one day earning an M.A. in Vampire Literature.
Not my very best post, but I am tired. Will post on more differences soon. Have you all seen the new white Limited Edition Twilight books? I prefer the original ones. How about you?