Nightwatch: Transit, by Jeff Williams


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Post October 29, 2011, 12:49:03 AM

Nightwatch: Transit, by Jeff Williams

Just in time for Halloween, we have extra-dimensional (or Something) werewolves dangerously misbehaving.

This episode definitely takes the reader (not to mention Simon and Stephanie) farther from reality-as-we-know-it than any before. Other than that, there were a couple things I noticed.

For one, I didn't finish this story stomping around the house wishing to slowly kill Callow. I suppose I'll have occasion to grit my teeth over that again, though.

The other thing -- something I hadn't recalled noticing in previous episodes -- was an annoyance caused by a peculiarity in the author's use of attribution, or perhaps just a recurring misplacement of punctuation and/or line breaks. For example:
"Any signal?" he asked as he reached into his jacket. Stephanie shook her head. Around them, under the blue, clear, sunless sky, was a large expanse of pleasantly green grass, and the blades slowly swayed in a gentle, lulling wind. Simon gazed at the reading on his phone. He shrugged his shoulders. "A nice breeze at least," he said, and after a full minute of silence, he added, "This could be my dream, your dream, both of our dreams." Stephanie snickered quietly,

"No, you'd be Johnny Depp circa Pirates of the Caribbean," she said, still laughing quietly.


See that? I stumbled over it; it took me out of the story momentarily and made me backtrack. Here's what it should look like:

*****
"Any signal?" he asked as he reached into his jacket. Stephanie shook her head. Around them, under the blue, clear, sunless sky, was a large expanse of pleasantly green grass, and the blades slowly swayed in a gentle, lulling wind. Simon gazed at the reading on his phone. He shrugged his shoulders. "A nice breeze at least," he said, and after a full minute of silence, he added, "This could be my dream, your dream, both of our dreams."

Stephanie snickered quietly, "No, you'd be Johnny Depp circa Pirates of the Caribbean," she said, still laughing quietly.
*****
All I did was shift the line break; nothing else. Editorial exhaustion, maybe; a minor thing, but I thought I saw this happening more than once. But it is confusing.

Other than that -- enjoy the story. It's really something else.
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Post November 04, 2011, 09:50:37 PM

Re: Nightwatch: Transit, by Jeff Williams

Thank you for the posting! I know at least one reader I haven't alienated by the long delay since the last proper season of "Nightwatch." :)

I agree that this is probably the most fantastic (in terms of the amount of fantasy) in the series so far, and I did worry about whether I was taking things too far. However, given how much of a struggle completing "Girl with Kaleidoscope Eyes" had been, I didn't feel I was in a position to say no when this idea showed up and said "Write me!" Actually, some of it started off as a dream (many of the sections of the hotel sequence), and when I woke up, I started thinking about what could have led to those events in the dream. I remembered a set of red eyes peering out from the hotel room the people were trying to break in to, and I tried to envision what those eyes could have belonged to. The train and the doomed hobo in Nebraska came next, and then the story flowed from there.

Later on, I realized that the fantasy element was probably a good thing since I'd always intended for Nightwatch to accommodate multiple genres.

I truly appreciate your comments about my writing "quirks." These are words which I will definitely consider. I will say that I've done that before in the series, and I think those types of transitions are part of my style so to speak, but I hadn't realized that there was a possibility for confusion.

Thank you again for the comments!

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