Tag Archives: The Writing on the Wall

The Writing on the Wall

Tonight is a night of perceived horrors and frivolity. It is the end of October, the night of Halloween. And with the coming of this night, when the fabric of reality goes all wibbly, when wraiths and spectres slip through the holes and into the realm of men, we see the end of Pictonauts October. Words were written across the skin of paper and the skein of electrowizardy of computer screens, ideas were spun out of whimsy and fear in equal measure. Some people finished, others didn’t. There are causalities in every endeavour and we must not think less of those who didn’t haul themselves across the broken bodies of discarded words and phrases, to the top of Mount Pictonaut and scream into the windy night “I am unbroken! I am victorious!” It wouldn’t be a challenge if it was easy. Even though it really is easy, some people are just fucking lazy (and I love you for you laziness, truly I do). I could make an awful pun about walls and how, with the deadline now reached, there’s writing on them. But I fear that would be almost crass in the ease at which it could be made, I’m better than that. Puns are not the master of me. I can stop any time I want.

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The Arte and Science of Terror

Water, water everywhere...

As you may be aware this month’s Pictonaut challenge has a distinctly spooky bent to it. What with October being all ghosts, witches and an assorted agglomeration of supernatural voodoo; something which skirts into the grey and slightly disconcerting borders of the horror genre. This, to me, is beginning to prove a greater challenge than I originally anticipated. The whole spooky horror business is something I’ve generally managed to avoid my entire writing life. The exact reason as to why is something of a mystery. There were a few instances at school where we were more or less instructed to write a horror story, I met it with my traditional feckless disrespect for the subject matter and wry, yet utterly surreal humour. At least I’d like to think that my humour is wry.

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October’s Pictonaut Challenge

And so begins another month, the auspicious days of autumnal October. A month when the nights begin to close in around us and Winter begins to flex its chill fingers. It’s a month when the cold starts to nip at our heels just before it really begins to bite. October to me is a time of transition, a slightly mystical month; with the world-changing around us it feels like almost anything could happen. When it finally draws to a close October goes out with a bang, culminating in All Hallows Eve. If there is a day that embodies the mystery of the unknown I have yet to discover it. It is a night where the world feels just a little flimsy and surreal, as if the fabric which holds everything together is not quite as stolid as we believe it to be. The night where even the bravest and most sceptical of us all are just a little bit afraid of what might really be out there, lurking in the dark and dim corners of the world…

It’s the first of October, it’s a new month, it’s time for Pictonauts old and new to start flexing their fiction muscles.

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