Loneliness Or a Warm Gun

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Post January 11, 2010, 01:57:55 PM

Loneliness Or a Warm Gun

Loneliness Or a Warm Gun

There was a lot about this story that I enjoyed. I thought the details about Port Arthur were a nice touch. Details about the time period, also, were appreciated: The pianola; police carts and their bells; “servant of Beelzebub” – instead of the modern ‘child of the Devil’ or such.

I thought that the phrase “’nother die mention’” was unnecessary. Dimensions are just overused and we don’t need to know anymore than The Shadow came from the stars.

Perhaps it’s a difference in terms, but the phrase ‘I don’t really fathom’ on page 13 might be better said as “I don’t really believe a word…”

This creature reminded me of Star Trek’s creature of light that turned blood red when the Klingons and ship’s crew were killing each other. I think, really, Captain Kirk’s and Kang’s solution was better than this story’s. “Shall we battle here forever for the entertainment of this creature?” And then they killed it with _____ (not love).

Towards the very end of the story, there were 5 paragraphs that could have been shown instead of told.

I liked the 1992 section at the end, which explored the question: why is there evil in the world?

I think this story kind of lost steam at the end. I like the “Day of the Dove” ending better.
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Post January 11, 2010, 02:34:27 PM

The origins of the story

The author informed me that the story was inspired by a mass murder in Port Arthur (the very one described in the last part of the story), and indeed, his purpose was to ascribe that level of evil to an external source. While it is frightening to think that these things could be the result of a kind of possession that could happen to anyone, to me it is even more disconcerting to realize that human beings don't NEED an external influence to be so evil. (My suggested version of the ending went for irony: the loneliness of the families and loved ones of the murder victims would have constituted a feast for the alien, if he hadn't chosen to feed on terror and death instead.)

You can't wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.

Jack London (1876-1916)
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Post January 11, 2010, 04:08:52 PM

suggested ending

I think that would have packed more of a punch, the loneliness of the families. I'm with Robert - people are evil without benefit of outside beings. There may be some sense of control gained, however, by abscribing the event to something from 'the stars', that won't come back again. Is the ability to kill indiscriminately 'out there' or inside each of us?
Binding this story to a real event is an interesting take, though.
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Post January 12, 2010, 09:43:23 AM

Re: The origins of the story

Robert_Moriyama wrote:The author informed me that the story was inspired by a mass murder in Port Arthur (the very one described in the last part of the story),

I researched the "Port Arthur Massacre" when I first read the story. One of the more humorous sites I visited blamed it all on the Jews. No kidding, it was apparently a Mossad attack to destabilize Tasmania. Mel Gibson is just one in a long and well-established line of crazies, apparently.

All-in-all, however, I liked the story. It was about a clear as any story set along these lines can be, and it had all the elements it needed. The pace and set-up were clear and concise, and the author spent a lot of time getting all his grammar, spelling and syntax lined-up. That bespeaks a considerable amount of editing.

That the people in the town thought the lighthouse keeper was a ghost, makes perfect sense. He didn't explain himself to most folks.

Good take, and though I'm not sure why the 'offspring' waited so long to do what it did, I did appreciate the conundrum of the guy who shouldn't have been able to shoot very well, killing so many with so few shots.

It's as good an explanation of bad stuff, as any.

Made me wonder, made me think, and made me research.

. . .which is better than most of what I read does for me.

Good job.

Bill Wolfe
"I am Susan Ivanova. . . .I am the Right Hand of Vengence. . .I am Death Incarnate, and the last living thing that you are ever going to see. God sent me."


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Post January 13, 2010, 06:48:24 AM

Hi Guys.

Thanks very much for the kudos and the feedback.

There were two personal reasons I wrote this story.

1. I couldn't comprehend how the Port Arthur murderer could commit those crimes. But whenever I saw his face in the media, I always felt a deep sense of loneliness in him. So to cope with the horror of the murders I fictionalised the motivation behind them. It would probably cause outrage in many locals here.

2. You probably noticed from my bio that I'm a massive Dr Who fan. I'm also a fan of Big Finish audios http://www.bigfinish.com and I've wanted to write a story for them for a long time. It seems though that I have missed the boat when it comes to open submissions with them. I did write this to see if it worked as a story without being fanfic, but also if on the off chance open submissions were available at Big Finish, I wanted this to be able to have the Doctor inserted into it if necessary.

I did write this on the assumption that the reader would know something about the Port Arthur massacre, so your feedback was invaluable in helping me think about writing for a broader audience. I only picked up after it was published that the killer in my story was edited to be shot and killed (when a friend commented "I was that WAS what happened to the bastard"), whereas in my original draft I didn't say what happened to the killer at all. I understand why Robert added that. The killer has actually been living in a prison not 15 minutes away from my home until recently when he was moved to a prison hospital.

I'm also fascinated in the Day Of The Dove comparison. I've got that episode here somewhere, I'll have to dig it out and watch it again. It's been a very long time.

I'll take your comment about "nother die mention", but I was thinking about the Keeper's lack of comprehension than where the creature came from specifically.

Thanks once again guys. It was really encouraging to read your nice comments, and food for thought on the bits I need to work on.


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