A few weeks ago, I attended a meeting of the Mystery Writers of America’s New England Chapter in Holliston, Massachusetts, for the express purpose of learning about guns.
I’m a member of MWA NE, but hardly ever get to go to meetings, and those of you who live in Maine know why. One way, it’s a four hour drive from where I live in Camden, and without a place to stay at night, it makes for a L O N G day. But sometimes I “bite the bullet” (am I really saying that in this post??) and get in the car.
And that Saturday, I was glad that I did, because it was a fascinating experience.
Steve Ulfelder, President of MWA NE, arranged for a group of us to meet at Mass Firearms School for a course and time on the firing range. Our teacher – James Wise — gave us a fairly detailed safety class, and then we shot laser guns to practice our grips and stance.
We split into groups (I was with Barbara Ross’ husband Bill Carito) and headed into the range, first donning safety glasses and ear protection.
We shot revolvers, rifles, and semi automatics – 22 caliber first, and then 45 caliber later. We had one-on-one training with a Mass Firearms instructor at the range.
Here are a few things I learned, thanks to James:
* Focus on the front site
* Allow the trigger shot to be a surprise
* the Glock is the most common government-issued firearm
* 15 yards is the maximum distance you could really shoot someone in self-defense.
I shot the high caliber guns, but I can’t say I really liked it. (I’m not giving up my ukulele to start shooting guns.) The feeling, however, was amazing! The sheer power emanating from the semi automatic – what a rush! It really did blow me away. (sorry….)
I didn’t try the rifle – too much kickback for small frames, but I got back in my car a happy writer. I learned a lot, I enjoyed the camaraderie of the group and I brought back some cool targets.
In short — a blast!