On Writing: Chalkboard
I didn’t know where I was going when I started writing “Chalkboard”. I wanted to write a story that was a mashup of something like Silence of the Lambs meets Texas Chainsaw Massacre. I have always been fascinated with these movies, as they are both about human predators. In both instances the main villain, (Hannibal Lector, Leatherface) are cannibals who prey upon others. Hannibal Lector plays a game with his quarry, whereas Leatherface tends to be more set on the kill than the game.
In my story I didn’t want the villain to hunt his prey for food. When the food chain enters into a horror plot it tends to dominate the theme. I love these stories, but was not looking to make one for myself. I wanted to create a story wherein the abductor was not looking to physically hurt (in the long term) their prey.
The man in the story “Chalkboard” was meant to be a fairly normal individual that went too far in indulging his desires. I wrote the story in such a way that left the motives of the villain up to the readers’ imagination. I often prefer to leave a gap for the readers’ imagination to fill. It allows my one story to become a myriad of different stories depending on the reader. I left the same gap for the details of what happens to Garrett while he is unconscious. Garrett has been abducted, drugged and raped. With those base elements to the story, the particulars are best filled in by the reader. They will always select what they believe is the most heinous outcome.
“Chalkboard” was actually meant to be the beginning of a longer piece of work that would have seen the abductor select several individuals; however, once I got into writing this story it did not follow the same trajectory I wanted to direct the story in. That’s fine, it happens. The longer story I have been working on that was inspired by “Chalkboard” is called “Puppets”. Perhaps you will see this available soon enough.