How does a nice girl like you imagine a horrible, dark story like that? by Beth Hughes

It is a question I have been asked many times since I uploaded Sum of my memories to the Create 50 website and asked my friends and family to take a look.

In all honesty death fascinates me, or to be more precise the idea that death might not be the cut off, the complete cession of life and consciousness which is the societal norm fascinates me.

I have long been a collector of macabre stories, Victorian ghosts were my childhood preference and while my peers were engrossed in Enid Blyton’s halcyon endless summers, I was lost in a world of sunken eyed ghost children and terrified scratches on the inside of coffins. Although, ironically, I do shy away from gratuitous violence, gore and in your face horror.

The idea I wanted to explore was what would happen if death wasn’t the end of consciousness, if rather than being some floaty ghost consciousness that conscious remains grounded, contained in the decay of death. The story and its central character have been through several evolutions before it even got as far as the website first draft. In some he was found and the nightmare ended but somehow that didn’t sit with the hopelessness which seemed to fit so naturally.  In others he rose like an avenging angel of terror but that lost the realism I wanted. Instead the story developed as it is today, hopeless, sad even gentle in parts but with a sucker punch to our immortal hopes.

Although what has surprised me is the way it seems to resonate with everyone who reads it, it is a raw nerve story, in which each reader finds their own mirror.

Beth Hughes

My profile is HERE.

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