Short Story: Carnival

Posted: July 10, 2012 in Horror, Short Story

 Okay, time for another short story. This one is called “Carnival” and it has three inspirations… the excellent HBO series called “Carnivale”, the childhood-America stories of Stephen King, and the novel “Something Wicked This Way Comes” by the recently-departed Ray Bradbury. The last two are closely related.

The story: A father and son feel a flash of rekindled affection after years of alienation scratching a living from a dustbowl farm, when the carnival comes to town, bringing a bit of light to everyone’s lives. But… once the bars are locked on the Ferris Wheel, once the Carousel begins to turn, that is when the slaughter begins. The showpeople massacre the town, killing every person… except for the son, who flees, and tells the story many years later, when the same carnival (much modernised) turns up at the town where he has raised children and grandchildren.

It feels like a good story, one that has been bubbling away for a while, even before watching “Carnivale” (one of the great HBO programmes, like “Deadwood”, before the money was blown on “Rome”). I read Ray Bradbury’s novel only recently, but it made all Stephen King’s (good) writing slot into place immediately. He writes about a past America that is somehow still present, big skies and wide open spaces, dusty towns, and so on. This story will probably remain under wraps for a while once written (currently at 1,500 words out of about 3,000 to 5,000) as it feels as if it could be submitted somewhere… so watch this space.

After this… road trip planned to Loch Ness to put a foot up the backside of “Magick”!

ps…. might change the name of the story. Still not 100% sure of it.


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