The darkness comes from everywhere.
Tales of horror arrive in the newspaper every day. This week a toddler was stuck in a high chair for six days while her dead mother lay on the floor in front of her. The child managed to survive because she could reach food from where she sat. The mother had suffered a chronic illness. When a child services worker rang the bell, no one answered but she could hear the child crying, she called police. They broke down the door to find a body beginning to decay and a terrified child.
When asked by an interviewer, “Where does the darkness come from?” these were my answers. Of course, we all have terrible childhoods and can draw on the thousand arrows flesh is heir to, but when done right, fiction can be the valve that lets off pressure. Fiction can make sense in a world that is plotless (though all stories that end with “happily ever after” are conveniently ended before the going gets nasty.)
I said to my wife (it’s funny but I’m dead serious, too): This is our happily ever after now. But make no mistake, this will all end horribly…unless a carbon monoxide leak kills us all in our sleep, of course.
Fiction is the lie that tells the truth. Humour can do that, too. There’s an element in the question that’s subtle and insulting, also. I wrote a short story that would convince you I’ve drowned at least one person in a bathtub. When people reacted to me with alarm, I smiled and pointed out, “It is fiction.” Perhaps they’re disturbed that I give these matters so much thought.
~Mr. Sunshine strikes again