Monday, June 18, 2012

The Birth of Horror. . . ?

Like zombies?  I'm not their biggest fan, but my husband loves them.  If a movie description mentions zombies, he has to at least give it a looksy.  I watch them with him to offer my companionship, but there are only a few I like.

There have been times when the zombie movies he watches at night, in the bedroom, while I'm sleeping, have triggered dreams.  And, while very vivid at the time they unfold--all my dreams are vivid and filled with symbolism--they are quickly lost to the morning's warm glow.  However, there was one dream that stood out.  One dream that left such a heavy imprint on my mind that even the details have stuck with me over the months since it invaded my sleep.

I wrote of this dream before.  I gave a vague description of what it entailed, but nothing more, citing the desire to use it in a story.

That story has been born, but I fear that I may fail to capture the horror aspect of what a zombie story should be.  But maybe that's the problem.  Must it be horror?  Or can I make it more about how a family, and thus a civilization, survives in a world turned upside down by pandemic?

So below I have included a scene from my zombie story.  This scene was borne from the most vivid and impacting part of my dream.  I hope you enjoy it, and that it doesn't give you nightmares--although I don't believe I have that sort of skill.

The Doberman lunged, its lips peeled back to reveal slavering jaws dripping a yellowish goo.  It’s pupils glowed as if a camera flash lit them, but there was nothing behind those eyes.  Nothing that indicated the animal knew what it was doing. 
Instinct had me ducking to avoid losing my face to those jaws.  At the same time, I rammed the fingers of my right hand between the bones on the dog’s lower jaw, the elasticity of the skin allowing me to wrap them around the teeth so the animal bit down on its own flesh.  I knew I couldn’t let it bite me.  The infection that possessed it would kill me.  Adrenaline gave me the strength to yank down on the jaw, pulling the head down and flipping the large black body over onto it’s back.   
As the weight of the beast thumped on the ground, I heard the distinct click-slide-click of a shotgun behind me.   
“Get down,” came my husband’s order as he lowered the double-barrel at the animal.  Covering my ears, I ducked as the dog clambered to its feet and prepared to lunge again.  The blast rocked the tiny basement of the house.  The impact from the shell shattered the Doberman’s head into unrecognizable pieces. 

So how'd I do?  Did I capture violence of the action?  The adrenaline pumping through the character as she deals with the intrusion of her sanctuary?  Let me know.  Give me the good and the bad.  What did I do right?  Wrong?  Please give your honest opinion by leaving a comment below.   I can not improve unless my readers tell me what they want to see.

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