I have been writing a novel since, oh, 1998 or so. It’s gone through a lot of changes, but the core concept has always been the same: there’s this cop, who is also a werewolf, and her last name is Anderson.
For a while, I had a premise that involved the Satanic Panic of the 1980s and a cursed role-playing game (influenced by Werewolf: The Apocalypse), then it mutated into just some random werewolf who goes around biting people to build up an army (like a lycanthropic Charles Manson).
Then there was the half-conceived notion of a half-bright guy in a mental hospital who doesn’t know he’s a powerful, berserker werewolf, and this gang of werewolves who bite a cop and use her to break into the hospital. I actually finished that one, and oh jeez, was it bad. It wasn’t even good enough to be a first draft. It was a negative 5 draft.
I learned from it–mostly not to let people read your first draft, because first drafts are always steaming piles of crap–and came up with a better premise. I read books on writing and even took a novel-writing class (of which I was the only student who had actually written a novel). I started this blog. I finished the final draft of the novel, dubbed it Bulletproof Werewolf, and got a literary agent. (That went nowhere, though.)
I had that agent for around 3 years, and in that time, the novel sat. I worked more on this blog, writing short stories using the Anderson character, and got a better feel for her (and also the confidence to write stories that weren’t strictly based in reality, that used lizard men and zombies). I recently decided to dust off the novel, make a few changes, and try the publishing thing again.
So I’ve decided to post the chapters here. Since the prologue to Bulletproof Werewolf is pretty short (on the Pages app, it’s less than a page), I’ve included it at the end of this post.
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I flinch when the first shovelful of dirt hits my face. I wait to be shot again, thinking he saw me move. Instead, I hear the scrape of the shovel blade. More dirt lands on my chest.
I try to keep breathing shallowly. I tell myself that I am not starting to feel claustrophobic.
A third load drops on my neck. My fingers dig into the floor of my makeshift grave.
Another shovelful spills across my thighs. A bead of sweat trickles down my scalp, and I focus on it, grateful for the distraction. It meanders behind my left ear and starts tickling my skin.
Suddenly, I’m not so grateful for it. I want to wipe it away, but even as dark as it is in this hole, I know he’ll see that. I need to concentrate on something else, like how to escape being buried alive. But it itches so much.
My legs tense. There should be more shoveling. I don’t hear anything except night noises—cicadas, crickets.
Maybe he did see me breathing. Maybe he’s standing over me with his gun aimed for my head this time, instead of my chest. Maybe his finger’s tightening on the trigger right now.
I want to move. I’m tired of playing dead.
The bead of sweat finally reaches my neck.