Noir Set Building

Set building is one of my favourite parts of getting ready to do a feature – next to designing flyers, deciding what shirt to wear. I already a small series about a summer camp – 5 pieces – that I’d written a few years ago, then posted here earlier this year. The response to the sections I posted was good so I decided to present them at Noir.

structure01 into the set murkily

Lizzie had an open spot in October, which was perfect for the dark of these pieces. Bad things happen at the summer camp but are they are treated with a curious detachment by all. I enjoy that ironic paradox as the story unfolds. The sections are linked by images and, what I hope, is a sense of foreboding and threat – that the reader feels for the boys but which the boys don’t really feel.

Each section takes a different narrative approach as well, one includes campfire songs, another is a nod to the ballad form: “mother mother what did you do.”

structure02 vert

building set connections

To add to the piece I decided to put in a few of the ghost stories told around the campfire. These I’ve picked from another series My Village, which I blogged about here on Wednesdays during the summer. I am reading the Decameron – in which the pilgrims tell stories each night that are vaguely related to their personal growth as their pilgrimage goes on.

I’m not aiming quite so high with Pinebow but one of the things I’ve discovered is that connecting random pieces often creates a through line for the reader, listener, that the writer is unaware of. I am not unaware though so I making them stitch together more cohesively. I’ve written a couple of brand new scary pieces that expand my mythology of the moose.


set ready for props

In rewriting the Pinebow sections I also made them creepier, more related to the mythology of My Village and added some hints of Lovecraft. See if you can find them. The winner gets a visit from the ancient ones.


October 19 – feature – Cabaret Noir – Pinebow


November 1-30 – participating – NaNoWriMo 2014 –




a piece that didn’t make into this set


Pushed To The Wall


I don’t think I could kill

not even in self defence

maybe those survival endorphins

would kick in

if I was pushed to the wall

but the emotional aftermath

is something I don’t I want to deal with

I’d rather be the spirit

that haunts someone

than have one haunt me

I have enough ghosts already

without adding to them

with someone I deliberately

invited into the picture

by killing them


I trust people I know

who have killed

in war

by accident


they tell me

the act of taking a life

changes the mind

even the psychotic

the serial killer

has that change

after they get away with the first one

life looses it value

for them

except in the game their mind is playing


for others

they often wake up

from a dream of those last moments

eyes of the dying

the gasps for a bit more life

they spend their life atoning

for drunk driving swerves

for killing for their country

they are never at peace


no I don’t think I could kill

so don’t push me to the wall

or my will to live

might teach us otherwise

buried vert is that a human ear

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