I managed two chapters of editing today. Things I want to learn kept calling to me like a Siren of old. I went to the footboard of our bed and knocked.
A slurping, gurgling sound crawled toward me from beneath the bed. A sickly yellow tentacle slithered out beside my leg.
“New style?” I asked.
“You know how it is. I wanted to try a new look. New look, new you they say.”
“I'm still trying to figure out this horror thing.”
“Unh unh. Remember my consulting fee?”
“Yeah, but I couldn't come up with all of it. I managed to find some mismatched socks in the laundry.”
“Laundry monster is kind of hot. A couple of these and it might be a good weekend for the old bed monster. What's on your mind?” The tentacle scooped up the socks and dragged them under the bed.
“Last night, I watched a movie on the Chiller channel–“
“That was your first mistake.”
“Yeah, the characters were all right out of central casting. They wound up stuck in the middle of a lake that was owned by a giant killer fish. They managed to attack it with the oars, which they promptly lost. It wasn't long before they started voting people off the boat to distract the fish.”
“Don't tell me any more.”
“I wound up cheering for the fish about halfway through.”
“Nothing scary about that.”
“Exactly. I'm no closer to figuring out how to write a scary monster. This morning I downloaded and read The Call of Cthulhu. It's a short story and I'm kind of into those right now.”
“That was a better move. Old C was big back in the day. Have you considered reading anything written in this century?”
“I liked the style, but it isn't really very commercial by today's standards. My problem is that saturation seems to have removed scary stuff from the modern world. What can a vampire or a zombie do that we haven't all seen a dozen times?”
“Not much, I'm afraid. That's the same problem I have these days. Kids see so much on video games the old bed monster pales in comparison. Maybe when you figure it out you can tell me.”
“Then I'll have to charge you a consulting fee. I don't even want to write horror. It's just that a tip or trick can enhance other kinds of stories.”
“That makes some sense. You might have better luck learning some romance tricks.”
“No way. No man understands that stuff.”
“Well the old bed monster is going to give it one hell of a shot tonight.”
“Alright man. Just don't get lint all over the place, and stay out of my wife's fabric softener.”
Time for me to get back to editing. Violence and brutality I can write.