Thought of the kind of Vampires we see in fiction has changed some in the last few decades. The more mystical vampire has been replaced by ones that can’t be killed by wooden stakes or can go in the sun or do other things that would have been considered a break against vampire canon not too long ago. Much of what we consider Vampire lore is newer though, even Dracula appears in the sun at one point during Bram Stoker’s novel about him.
So why is there all the confusion? Because Vampire legends and lore are older than the word Vampire itself. Most cultures on the planet have something similar to a Vampire and most of what we call our own current lore is a filtered down hodgepodge of many of those that came before. In some areas you were meant to stake them in the mouth, other times you had to stake them with specific types of wood. In many instances they were said to cast no shadow or reflection.
Much of this is still present to this day. The reason why I have been going over this is because I have been trying to decide what abilities to give the creatures in my own novels. Vampires have been the hardest because they’re so often handled in fiction. I’ve decided to lean more toward the old school side of things. I’m letting them be alright in the daylight (because they were originally) and I’m thinking of making them weaken vastly if staked from the wood of a specific type of tree. I’m also going to throw in a rarely used trait and say they can’t cross a body of running water. There will be other things to come as I am still ironing out he details.
As I have no intention for Vampires to be my main characters, I don’t want them to steal the show. But I want them to be workable, not over powered, and somewhat different than what the typical writing we see out there presents them as. Though that’s not to be said that there is something wrong with adding something new the legend or going with a more standard version—just make sure it’s workable in the narrative and doesn’t distract from the plot.