Fuck Vampires

Some stories are written with sledgehammers. They don’t care about your feelings. Look up “unsubtle” in the dictionary, and they’ll take the dictionary and slam it in your face.

I’ve written one of them, and since it’s unlikely to appear in a magazine, I present it here. I’m too sick to be at Occupy Frankfurt, so let this be my contribution to the struggle for today.

Share it. Spread it. Retweet it.

I make no apologies.

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18 Comments

  1. Very nice, and just in time for Halloween. Now, if only I could stop playing Minecraft and get my own Halloween story going.

  2. Kyle

     /  October 16, 2011

    At first I thought it was just gonna be all about Twilight and how they sucked the country dry meaning they hypnotized people into worshipping bad literature. Then you got into this whole story thing like you were talking about actual vampires. Then you mentioned how everyone was bloodless and I thought that sounded sort of metaphorical again. But in the end it just sounded like an ordinary story. Maybe the metaphor’s just too deep for me or something.

  3. Brilliant!

  4. Of course they are actual vampires, in the context of the story. It’s a story, and must function as a story in its own right. That the story may then have certain economic or political parallels in our world is a different issue, and no matter how important it is to the story (and here it is very important), it cannot come before the solidity of the story’s internal reality.

  5. JM

     /  October 16, 2011

    The picture is Thessaloniki, right? I didnt really get what the metaphor or internal reality of the story is supposed to represent. I guess something about capitalism.

  6. Athens, actually. Stop trolling.

  7. Yeah, right.

     /  October 16, 2011

    Awesome. That sledgehammer always knows how to fuck my robotronictic shithoughts up. Even tough I’m the only one who can really take it apart, thank you for keep trying over and over again.

    I found this thing a few days back. Don’t know if you already knew about these guys. They got their own brand of sledgehammers, and I think you just might think “cool”: http://subgenius.com/slaq.htm

    Remember, if you don’t laugh, you didn’t get it, but if you only laugh, you didn’t get it.

    There’s a few concepts they have that I found your games and lattest short story have in common with them. Only, what you call a Museum, a Machine, walls, vampires, etc etc etc, they call Pink Boys, aliens, Normals, the Conspiracy, etc etc etc. And they got their own medicine for all of it. SLACK.

    What is SLACK? I couldn’t say. Actually, I haven’t found it yet. I got a glimpse of it in the past, but lost it along the way. Anyway, I think you already know what it is, so you don’t need an explanation, but it’s always good to find other slackers out there, so here you go: http://www.subgenius.com/pams/pam2p7.html

    That’s it. Keep slacking off, man. Maybe one day I’ll stop being such a fucking robot, get back all the slack they’ve been taking from me and have the balls to tell those vampires to go fuck themselves.

  8. JM

     /  October 17, 2011

    Not knowing that the picture show Athens is considered trolling now?

  9. No, no, JM, it’s a very Greek joke that…

  10. JM

     /  October 17, 2011

    I’m greek, and I wasn’t trolling. Looks similar to Thessaloniki on that pic.

  11. Uh, I don’t get it. How can you tell when it’s a picture of the sky?

    Also, I don’t think that’s what he meant when he said trolling… >.>

  12. James Patton

     /  October 18, 2011

    I liked some touches. I like the idea of human sacrifice being used as an excuse for genocide, I like the fact you wrote a story in which you show vampires to be posing losers and I really liked the twist halfway through when it turns out the speaker’s addressing an actual character and is kind of having a conversation with him. That was clever and it worked wonderfully.

    But, there were a few things I didn’t like so much. Please bear with me, this isn’t me trolling you or trying to prove I’m a better writer or anything stupid like that, this is just my honest opinion which you can take or leave and which, I hope, might be useful to you.

    I think the opening was a bit problematic. You succeeded in getting across a lot of information naturalistically, which is good, but I think you do leave the reader a bit confused. Kyle, who posted above, was left unsure whether this was a story about real vampires or you ragging on capitalism or Twilight or something. I understood that this was a story about real vampires, but this was something which simply never occured to me until halfway through the second paragraph. And when it is introduced, it’s pretty weighty: not only are these vampires real, they’ve sucked whole countries dry. I know you have to get a lot across in not a lot of time but I felt like the first paragraph, talking about vampires in general, could set up any vampire story but especially a twilighty one. The fact that the focus suddenly shifts to world-devouring ones is a bit of a shock.

    I was also left a bit cold by the whole premise, I’m afraid. For me, any story involving vampires – even one entitled “Fuck Vampires”, which is a good start – really, *really* needs to show me why it deserves to exist. There are so many bad vampire movies and books. (Ironically, one of the worst vampire stories ever written was actually the first one, by John Polidori. It’s AWFUL. Thank God things improved from that point on.)

    The point is, vampires have been used so well yet can be used so badly that if I read a story about one, it’d better be mind-blowing. It can’t simply put vampires in a modern-day setting and say that somehow this is now novel; it can’t simply refer to vampires and expect the reader to fill in the blanks (though I’m not saying your story does either). It needs to have a firm idea of what a vampire is and portray that idea so firmly and vividly that the reader is shocked by them (whether by their raw power or by how silly they are). Even if the vampires are a metaphor for some other life-draining force (see Daybreakers, where almost everyone is a vampire and the blood supply is running out – a metaphor for oil), they need to be either painted with such vividness that the reader is struck by this vision of vampirism, or the system by which vampires operate (sacrifices, in your case) needs to be displayed on such a scale that we are horrified or amazed by what we see. If the vampires symbolise something, this horror can then be brought back over to the original object (which may, in your case, be greedy capitalism, though I don’t want to put words into your mouth).

    But with your story, I never really felt that I knew what the vampires were like, or what vampiric society was like. Yes, we were told a number of things – I know vampires are posers, I know they’re nasty upper-class types, I know they’re sucking countries dry, I know they’re whittling people down via human sacrifice – but I never felt that. I was told but didn’t see.

    Also, I’m not sure about the whole “human sacrifice” thing. I know the work has a lot of political subtext but when I read “human sacrifice” I think of Aztec pyramids, the slaughtering of people in the forest and ritual chanting. It just seems rather at odds with the otherwise modern setting. And I’m also not sure about the magical spell protection thingy either, for similar reasons: it seems odd to me that people in a modern society would accept such a fable, and when you say that the vampires had toxic waste left over from their magical thingummies I just kind of think that’s a bit forced.

    So, overall enjoyable, I’m glad I read it but there were some things about it that I felt didn’t sit very well. I hope I’ve not offended you; I’m genuinely trying to give you constructive (rather than self-important) criticism.

  13. JM

     /  October 18, 2011

    What is trolling about “I didn’t really get the story.” As for what James wrote, I can mostly agree. I don’t say it’s good or bad, I just don’t get the point Jonas is trying to make. The vampire society, as outlined in the story, could be a metaphor for capitalism, that is my guess, and thats what I wrote.

  14. I know where this is going. It’s going to devolve into all of us at each other’s throats, arguing over what the Jonas God meant. Then he’ll come on and clear everything up, and we’ll all live happily ever after.

  15. I guess it’s a matter of perspective. Since I’m writing from an internet cafe in Hell, I can’t really go into detail; and to some degree it would be hard for me to do so, since for me (and other people, though obviously not everyone) the story works. If you read it as a story inspired by what’s going on in Greece, it will probably make a lot more sense.

    As for “magical stability” – is that any harder to believe than “the invisible hand” or the other buzzwords of capitalism? We’re told it’s profoundly necessary to bleed Greece dry, destroy its natural resources and plunge its people into destitution to save a few banks that will soon collapse again anyway. That makes just as little sense.

    Perhaps you need to be seeing, to be strongly aware of, the horror of what’s going on in Greece (and several other countries, now and previously) to have the emotion of the story hit you. It works for me, it works for some people – that’s the most I can hope for, really. Thank you for the honest feedback, though. It won’t make me change anything, but I do appreciate it.

  16. THE JONAS GOD HAS SPOKEN!

  17. James Patton

     /  October 20, 2011

    It’s quite right that you shouldn’t change anything. The story is as it is and that’s that.

    I think most of the problem does come from the fact that I know relatively little about what’s going on in Greece. I know about the conflict in its broadest sense, but I haven’t actually heard a Greek politician justifying what’s happening in a speech or anything. So to me, the idea of “magical stability” really *is* more ludicrous than the “invisible hand” because, while I think the invisible hand can be said to affect things in some way some of the time (though I think that any economist who believes it’s some kind of panacea is extremely misguided), the idea of magic just seems ridiculous to me. No doubt that would be different if I were in Greece.

    Ultimately I think I’m not the story’s intended audience, so it’s fine that I don’t really get it.

  18. Another way of reading the story that might make it work better: think of it not as a story about vampires, but a story about resistance. It’s more about saying no than about anything supernatural.