Behind the Book is an ongoing series wherein I tackle a new chapter of Croak each week and give you all of the secret, behind-the-scenes tidbits and trivia that went into writing it. For an archive of past chapters, click here. Enjoy!
Chapter 2: The Greyhounding.
- I think it’s pretty obvious from this chapter that I can’t stand Greyhound. (The bus company. I have nothing against Greyhound dogs, who are pointy and adorable.) During my college years, I spent many a seven-hour bus ride from Boston to Syracuse and back again, and most times I was just happy to escape with my life and head in tact. Past adventures include: tires popping; driver getting lost and cruising around the city in search of the bus stop for an hour; creepy guy sitting directly next to me when the bus was mostly empty and proceeding to ask me if I ever “experimented” with other girls at college; and, of course, this gem of a conversation that took place in the seat behind me while I was innocently crocheting a baby hat:
Man #1: “I just got out of prison.” (Like, had exited prison and boarded the bus.)
Man #2: “Oh really? What were you in for?”
Man #1: “Assault and battery.”
Man #2: “No way! That’s what I was in for!”
- Originally there was also a line in here about a backed-up toilet and the resulting fecal odor emanating throughout the coach, but it got too gross.
- In my own bus travels, I often employed Lex’s strategy of flinging myself across both seats and pretending to be asleep so that no one would sit next to me. I agree that this is kind of rude, but listen, I only did it to survive.
- Popped collars really infuriated me when I was in high school. I have since learned that there are more important things to get infuriated about. But let’s be honest, they still look like douchey vampires.
- I went to musical theater camp. Twice.
- In an earlier draft, Lex got really excited to see the accident on the highway, pressing up her face against the glass and hoping to see some gnarly injuries. But this made her seem a bit too awful. She’s bad enough as it is.
- Part of me really wants to write a companion piece to this chapter, titled “The Merry Midadventures of Steve.”
Got any questions about Chapter 2? Post them below!