Bourjaily: How to Shoot a Vampire

Turns out wooden stakes are just for fictional movie vampires. When real vampires attack us, we can just shoot them with regular guns. Isn't that good to know?

This revelation comes from Scott Bowen, a former editor at Field & Stream and author of the new "Vampire Survival Guide" by Skyhorse Press. (It's no surprise to me that Bowen wrote this book. Scott is very pale and seriously, I never saw him wear anything but all black. But, I think he's on our side). The "Vampire Survival Guide" is an entertaining read, along the lines of "Zombie Survival Guide" but funnier and more thoroughly imagined. As you might expect, given Scott's F&S background, there's a section on guns and loads. In it, he explains that vampires are no different from anything else. They will succumb to "massive tissue damage" even if that tissue is already undead.

As Scott goes on to point out, vampire shooting is a low-visibility, nighttime event, so shots are mostly taken well inside 100 yards. Since vampires travel in groups ("covens" is the technical term) of six to 40 members you'll want to carry lots of ammunition.

To sum up: your vampire gun needs to make big holes; it need only be effective/accurate to 75-100 yards at most; it should fire fairly quickly; it should hold a lot of bullets.

Looking through my gun cabinet which contains exactly zero centerfires, the only likely candidates I find are my various turkey and slug guns. If the uprising starts tonight I will make due with an 870 turkey gun topped with an Aimpoint 9000. I'll load it with Federal's Low-Recoil Truball slugs: one ounce, .729" lumps of lead launched at a shoulder friendly 1200 fps (I may have to shoot a lot of vampires). I think that will do in a pinch, but the ammunition is bulky and the gun only holds five rounds. Obviously I need to shop for a dedicated vampire rifle.

Any suggestions?