Wednesday, March 23, 2011

March Secret Agent #34

TITLE: Venery
GENRE: Adult Urban Fantasy

Damn. Nothing ruins a night like werewolves on the loose.

The tackle from behind caught me off guard. Sharp claws gripped my shoulders and hind legs slammed into my lower back. I shrieked and crashed face-first into the forest floor, eating a mouthful of dirt. Spitting out the soil, I sucked in an angry breath.

How the hell had it snuck up on me?

The beast's hot breath hit the back of my head, feeding my bloodlust. My skin tightened and stretched.

A bone-chilling cry howled in the distance. Another werewolf? The creature on my back froze and barked short, sharp woofs.

An inferno seized my body, and my skin started to split, echoing like meat slapping a cutting board. My inner wolf tore at my chest for release, her whines churning my stomach. A long breath gushed past my lips, and the floodgates burst open. My limbs and bones stretched, and a tail sprouted from my tailbone. I screamed.

The werewolf on my back flexed its claws deeper into my flesh, and continued its howl into the night. Its deafening roar made my elongated fingers dig into the soil. My wolf-muzzle lengthened and a wolf-like form, doubling in size, replaced my female figure. When I raised my head, the werewolf slammed me back into the ground.

A growl rumbled in my chest, and I'd had enough.

15 comments:

Huntress said...

Hooked. The only change I see is the tail sprouting from a tailbone. That kicked me out of the story. Excellent descriptions, not too flowery or numerous. Like Goldilocks, it was juuuust right.

Good job!

sarajanewade said...

Very nice! I was completely hooked from the start, you really nailed the opening sentence! I'd love to read more of this, definitely. One of my favorite entries so far!

Seleste said...

I like a lot of this, but considering the opening line, I was a bit thrown by the MC being a werewolf herself. "Bloodlust" screams vampire to me, so when she shifted my reaction was kind of O.o. Getting past that, I enjoyed it quite a bit.

LTM said...

ooo, I did very much enjoy the opening here. It's super-hooky. And then the last sentence cinched it. Great writing!

All the best~

alexia said...

Love the voice here. Great job! I agree on the tail/tailbone sentence.

Fun stuff, good luck!

patesden said...

Loved it. Nice pace and good voice. Definately made me want to read more.

Anonymous said...

Liked the starting sarcasm; let me know right away that the character wasn't gonna be a push-over. Surprised when she turned into a werewolf, as I was thinking this is class Vamp v Wolf battle. Definitely left me wanting to read more...

Well done!

Anonymous said...

Great pace and interesting take on a werewolf transformation. Id love to know more detail on hów her transformation felt to her with another werewolves claws diggin into her at the same time.

Adrienne said...

LOVE LOVE LOVE THIS!

My only nit-pick is when you say "and barked short, sharp woofs."

Puppies woof. Wolves bark, growl, howl, snap, etc.

Ramona Dark said...

A lot to like here. Some great, snappy writing. A few things stood out, one being the 'woofs' which has already been pointed out by Adrienne.
-'My limbs and bones stretched, and a tail sprouted from my tailbone.'<<--The repeat of 'tail' sounds a bit clumsy, imo.
-'The werewolf on my back flexed its claws deeper into my flesh, and continued its howl into the night.' <No comma, not an independent clause.
-'My wolf-muzzle lengthened and a wolf-like form, doubling in size, replaced my female figure.' <<Saying she grew a wolf-like muzzle and wolf-like form is way telly. Can you show this? Describe her nose breaking and stretching? Legs widening to thick, hairy hind legs (only written way less lamely than I just did :P )
Despite my picks, I did really enjoy your writing. Good luck and thanks for sharing :)

Sadie Hart said...

Comment try two. -sighs-

I absolutely loved your first line! I'm the kind of person who likes to be hooked in the first few sentences and you nailed it. Great job! Overall, great pacing, excellent end line, and nice writing. Beyond that, any 'bad' comments I have are more nitpicks.

1) "eating a mouthful of dirt" sounds a bit odd to me, especially since she spits it out in the next sentence. Maybe, "I shrieked and crashed face-first into the forest floor, getting a mouthful of dirt."

2) I'll third the comment about woofs and barks. I have heard adult dogs "woof" but it's more of a low huff. A woof and a bark give the reader the perception of two very different sounds, so it reads a little off there.

Anonymous said...

I have trouble with this because I don't know the MC, so it makes it hard for me to care about what's happening. Sorry, for me this is just another Friday night bar fight and I don't care who wins.

Barbara said...

I'm with Anonymous here. I think the writing is good, and it's a great fight scene, as well as a cool werewolf metamorphosis. It would work great somewhere else, I think, but not as an opening. I don't know who your MC is, I don't know why she's in the woods, and I don't know why she's being attacked. Is it random, or were they looking for her in particular? The reason makes a difference.

Because I don't know any of that, nothing stands out here to make this different from all the other werewolf stories out there. I have no idea of what's to come and I have no reason to empathize with your MC. As Anonymous said, it's just a fight.

Perhaps give us a parg or two of your MC, and answer some of those questions before the fight breaks out, then it may matter to me whether she wins the fight or not.

Secret Agent said...

This does an excellent job of describing the scene in vivid detail, but with an economy of language. Well done. It's exciting and visceral and full of tension. But it's likely I wouldn't read on because werewolf stories are not for me. It's just a thing I can't get into. Luckily there are dozens and dozens of other agents who would take my place and keep turning pages here.

Anonymous said...

I loved the imagery. My favorite part was: "My inner wolf tore at my chest for release"

I'd enjoy reading the entire book.