I never thought I’d find myself writing a title like this – “Vampire Squid from Hell”. After reading an article in “New Scientist”, I’ve caught myself intrigued by such a creature. It is not so much the way this particular squid collects its food that makes it so interesting, but the name of the squid itself.
The official name is Vampyroteuthis Infernalis – or literally, “Vampire Squid from Hell”. This creature drags retractable filaments behind itself like fishing lines as it floats through low oxygen water. These filaments collect waste bits, such as feces, from the water, which it then combines with its own mucus to form balls of food. What a way to live?
Here is a link to the original article: http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn22299-vampire-squid-from-hell-eats-faeces-to-survive-depths.html
I am fascinated as a writer by all of the imagery this particular name conjures. Are you a storyteller? What sorts of tales might this animal inspire? You might go the crazy science fiction/horror route and develop a genetically modified Vampire Squid from Hell that develops bony teeth and can survive for short times out of water. They begin to terrorize a lost ocean faring vessel.
Or, what if scientists working with human-animal DNA hybridization “accidentally” combine the DNA from the Vampire Squid from Hell with human DNA? What might result?
Or, dig deeper thematically and consider the obsession of a man who has been studying these creatures his entire life, and the lengths he has gone to in order to bring this creature to light.
What stories might you tell? Please let me know.
Maybe I’ll let Harrison Dale encounter some such creatures in a second novel follow up to “Master of the Hunt“. Yes, a werewolf lost in the water with crazed vampire-like sea creatures…