Word count – 9,700
There is an interesting idea buried in here about reincarnation, but it takes so very long to get to anything interesting in Sometimes They Come Back that it’s already an uphill battle to win my attention over, and it never manages to do it.
The second act is fine and the most involving part of the story, but it is flanked by a beginning that takes forever to get where it is going, and an end that doesn’t really pay off what has happened before.
This is the halfway point of Night Shift, and although the entries have been mostly positive so far, Sometimes They Come Back is a let down – not least of all because they managed to make a trilogy of movies out of it. It is one of the longest entries so far in this collection and certainly one of the weaker ones.
Not Recommended ⇓
The three challenge stories I am doing for the household – that I talked about several weeks ago – are well underway, and should probably all come in as flash fiction.
The Fiancée© decided upon a thriller with the word cave as inspiration. Her tale is called Tites Go Down (although I’m really not impressed with that title, and it will probably change). It currently sits at just over 600 words. I quite like it, but I’m not sure the kids are going to enjoy what happens in the story to them!
Daughter went with the word lake and wanted a mystery… so that’s what she is getting. Her tale is about 600 words and is called Last Chance Lagoon. I’m enjoying this one too and at this early stage it feels like it may end up being the best of the three.
Son went for a drama with the word equality. I initially struggled getting some traction with this one because it is such a broad genre and – dare I say it – a bland word to use. But that was what I was given, so I won’t shirk the challenge. Monochromatic is currently around 500 words.
I have decided to give myself a Christmas Day deadline for these three stories. I can print them out and save myself a few quid on gifts.
Starring: Viggo Mortensen, Mahershala Ali
Films about race relations in the United States of the sixties can be very hard to balance – they are either too steeped in history and are not entertaining as a result, or they try to tackle the issue in a manner they are ill-equipped to do – but Green Book sits somewhere in the middle. It is very easy to watch, and extremely simple to become invested in.
Mortensen channels his best Tony Soprano throughout as the blue-collar driver who just wants to get back home for Christmas, and Ali is charming as the refined musician who doesn’t really appreciate what life is like for ‘his kind of people’ in the states down south.
Green Book won the Oscar for Best Picture, and I certainly won’t argue with that.
I went to see the consultant today for the third time, about my sinus issues, and it looks like a two hour operation is the only way to fix it.
Back in the early part of 2019 I was put on a course of steroids and antibiotics, and for a month or so it worked. My nose wasn’t blocked and I regained my sense of smell. Unfortunately the relief was only temporary, and it soon went back to the way it had been before.
I have never had an operation so I’m a little apprehensive about it, but it seems as though if I want any kind of normality in that area again it’s something I am going to have to do. I’ll need to set my nerves to one side, man up, and get it done.
It’s under a general anaesthetic, so that will be another first, but fortunately The Fiancée© will be there to hold my hand and be my chauffeur for the following few days…
…or, you know, however long it takes me to recover.
Word count – 6,200
Trucks is about a bunch of autonomous – yes, you guessed it… trucks. The story is set entirely in a rest stop after the trucks have taken control of the surroundings and are keeping the patrons as their playthings.
There’s not much going on in Trucks, and we never find out why the vehicles have suddenly become sentient – not that it matters, I guess. Sometimes keeping the mystery is fine, and let’s face it: any explanation would probably sound like bullshit anyway, so why bother trying, right?
The story picks up in the second half, as the survivors decide on the best course of action, but this never really clicks the way I would like it to, or indeed the way that it should. I think if King wrote this ten years later it would be a much better piece, but as it stands it’s only just passable.
Starring: Paul Walker, Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez
This is my first time with this long-running franchise, which is a surprise for me. Fast cars, fiesty girls, and a central bromance… I’m surprised I didn’t get around to this years ago.
It’s hard not to see a lot of Point Break in this movie, because if you swap out the street racing and throw in a few surfboards that is exactly what you have, although this is certainly a step below that in quality.
The Fast and the Furious is cheesy and at times feels like it’s taking itself far too seriously for what it is. This is not a great movie, and at times it’s not even a good one, but it does have a charm that carries it across the finish line.
With this little writing challenge I set myself a couple of weeks ago I reckon I have stumbled upon a trifecta of (potentially) good stories. It may take some time to get them done, especially at this busy time of year, but perhaps I will stick them under the tree and offer them up as Christmas gifts.
Admittedly, the stories took a while to get to where I wanted them to go, but I now have a clear direction for each of them and it’s just a case of joining the dots and finding the picture that they make.
My biggest hurdle will be once I present the final products, because I can see the narratives putting a few noses out of joint in my closed audience.
It’s fiction, people. Try to remember that.