Saturday, October 27, 2007

Once in a Full Moon

I admit I'm not into werewolves, though I've used them in some of my stories, including "At the Mountains of Lunacy" in Light at the Edge of Darkness. It's an interesting idea and all, but it usually has a hyper-Calvinist angle that annoys me. As the Universal movie put it,

Even a man who is pure in heart
And says his prayers by night
May become a wolf when the wolfbane blooms
And the autumn moon is bright.

So you're pretty much toast if you're "infected" with lycanthropy, though more recent stories have introduced cures. In my own short story "Sheep Among Wolves," Martin, a man called to confront and destroy outposts of demonic power, is threatened by a werewolf, currently in human form:

“What would you do if I scratched you or bit you?” the old man asked.
“I believe I would eject you from the camp.”
“You’d try. But what else?”
“I’d probably bleed a bit.”
“Yeah, but what about tonight? What would you do when the moon is full tonight?”
“I would use it to read the Bible and proclaim God’s Kingdom to you and your masters.” Martin paused and chuckled softly. “I am not afraid of your so-called curse. ‘The curse causeless shall not come.’ You should know that. It must be accepted, and unlike many of your victims, I refuse to accept it.”

I find that theologically more acceptable. But there is theological value in the werewolf idea as a metaphor for escaping the curse of sin. For in that case, we are stuck: we are born into sin, like it or not, and we shall die from it, like it or not. But there is definitely a cure.

One example of a Christian werewolf novel (which I admit I have yet to read) is Sue Dent's Never Ceese.

1 comment:

Sue Dent said...

Thanks so much for the plug Steve. I did write Never Ceese with standard werewolf lore in mind. There are so many sub versions though, I had little trouble changing a few things to make it less offensive to a Christian reading. I feel like I did pretty good since it was short-listed for a Bram Stoker award, meaning it was held to a secular standard and passed, and was also voted book club choice of the month of April by readers at the American Fiction Christian Readers Association.

For the vampire in the story, I stuck to lore as well . . . mostly . . . and as I told you earlier in a shoutmail, I'll elaborate for you. But the sequel handles most of this and I don't want to spoil it. :)

 
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