Last night was a pretty rare celestial occurrence. I watched the eclipse from my Idaho driveway last night, and thought it was wonderful. I’ll spare you my pitiful iPhone photo, because others have posted some wonderful images online.
Events like that get my creative juices flowing. This was not only a full moon, it was a super-moon. Add into that the designation blood moon, and that is enough for most people to be pretty rare. This was also a total eclipse. There are frequent eclipses, but they are partial eclipses.
I’m more likely to avoid such an occurrence in my fiction. It’s just so rare as to be unbelievable. It’s also likely to be glommed onto by half the speculative authors out there. It has that special snowflake thing going for it in my mind.
Still, it’s a hot topic right now. So here’s how I might speculate about it. I always start off asking questions, the most prevalent one being “what if.” Note that many times the first few aren’t all that great.
What if it disappears and never comes back?
The moon influences the tides. What if all the special circumstances gave it an influence on other liquids, like magma?
It was called a blood moon. What if the tidal influences were felt upon our very blood. What would happen?
Geologists tell us the Earth has reversed polarity multiple times. Could this gravitational pull cause that to happen? What would happen if it did?
Perfect night for werewolves. Could the eclipse screw them all up? Maybe they line up and dance the Time Warp.
There certainly has to be an arcane ritual that takes advantage of the situation.
What if the shadow on the moon looked more angular and geometric than Earth’s shadow? The cloaking device worked perfectly for the invasion fleet, but the shadow gave them away.
Some ancients believed a monster swallowed the moon during an eclipse. What if it were true?
What if it were a solar eclipse? With the sun behind the moon, it revealed an image like candling a giant space egg. What if during the lunar eclipse, astronauts saw something similar inside Earth?
Maybe the fact that everything lined up caused what we used to call a radio skip. A spy agency gets wind of some pending terrorist action. Maybe alien messages are intercepted.
What if they predicted the eclipse and it didn’t happen? Something changed celestially. What is it?
To be honest, this doesn’t trip my trigger as a speculative element. I’m much more interested in the idea of flowing water on Mars. I enjoyed it immensely, but that’s the limit of where I’m going with it.
I think this particular eclipse is going to find its way into a lot of fiction. My only suggestion is not to take the easy way out with it. It screams druids, witches, lycanthropes, and demons. Maybe that isn’t the best way to incorporate it into a story. There will be a lot of competition in this arena too.
What do you folks think? Is this the speculative element of your dreams, or are you inclined to pass it over?