Brett: You could just call this “Ethan-is-full-of-shit.”
This post is sorta kinda about unreliable narrators in horror. Sorta because it came down during the seemingly neverending edits of The Fishing Widow that the main narrator has, um, truth issues… Kinda because it’s also about what we remember and what we forget. Like, forgetting to post my second Coffin Hop offering and getting around to it in the mid-afternoon Alaska time, but at nearly 7pm for those on the East Coast…
Yeah, well, so, that doesn’t look like Ethan, but that was the vibe we all got off him when edits started, and the edits started the moment I first smiled and wrote, “THE END.” and Brett said, “He’s so full of shit.” Really? Really?? HOW FULL?? I spent months on this thing and he’s WHAT? Dragging a story out of an unreliable narrator or uncooperative character may be a pain in the butt at times, but it does lead to some pretty interesting conversations in your head….and sometimes, they’re conversations that you’re not even PART of. And, you have to be careful. Some readers HATE unreliable narrators to the point that they’ll toss down a book because they believe the WRITER is the unstable idiot who’s telling the story…not the idiot IN the story. And that can lead to some interesting conversations OUTSIDE your head that, in retrospect when the person you’re talking to backs…away…slowly … you WISH you hadn’t been part of.
“That part there.” She flips open the book. “Here.” She points. “That seems so out of character.”
“But, that’s what he said happened,” you say. You smile apologetically. “But, you, know, sometimes he IS a butt.”
“Uh … huh…”
I wouldn’t change any of The Fishing Widow crew, but I wish I HAD known, before that first ending, that I was dealing with a guy who was desperate to not make himself look slightly more clueless than he is…
So … Comments? Do you LIKE unreliable narrators? Are they the type of people who add to the story or that should be the first against the wall when the zombie apocalypse comes? Leave a note below and you could win …. this…. (and I’m leaving the comments open until noon tomorrow because I was a forgetful blogger and should be flogged .. BUT NOT HARD! .. for that).
A handful of ceramic skull beads, ghost chile chocolate, and a Hei matau. A hey what-the-hell? It’ll protect you on the water. Yeah. It would come in handy, like, if we ever went, I dunno … fishing…. (bwa ha ha)