In light of this global pandemic, allow me to provide a distraction with my new Patreon-exclusive story, “White Rabbit”. I wrote this post before things got crazy. It feels weird posting about it now. Nevertheless, we still have Easter coming up and “White Rabbit” is a feminist Easter horror story that I hope you’ll love.
A part of my short story mission this year was to cater to holidays. I’m a big sucker for holidays. I look forward to them, though I won’t like that I did drop the ball with March’s story. Honestly, I did brainstorm ideas for a St. Patrick’s Day horror story but I just couldn’t cement a concept that I liked. There’s always next year, right?
The Failed “Pete Buttigieg is a Serial Killer” Story
FLASHBACK TIME! So, before the Democratic party combined all the candidates into keeping Joe Biden afloat, we were all hating on Pete Buttigieg pretty hard. At least, I was. Numerous folks on lefitist Youtube joked about him sounding like Patrick Bateman and potentially being a serial killer.
Now, is this criticism fair or warranted? Definitely not. But it was fun and inspired me to consider writing a short story about a Buttigieg-like presidential candidate who actually was a serial killer. I started writing, but then I came into problems trying to figure how a presidential candidate would find the time to kill people between rallies and debates and television appearances.
So I thought about writing the story of my hypothetical presidential candidate back when he was still a mayor of a college town, BUT I don’t know a whole lot about college town dynamics and I didn’t want to slip too far int the real-life racial dynamics that affected Pete’s campaign. Long story short, I didn’t want to write about real life or America.
Making it Canadian
Because I was watching so much curling at the time, I was exposed to a TON of farming equipment ads. And I don’t know about you, but when I watch enough ads portraying a lifestyle I’ve never lived, I felt inspired. I understood the struggle and I wanted to write about a struggling small town in Alberta, dammit.
TV AD DURING CURLING: You work hard. You’ve got high standards. You expect a high-yield canola seed that’s resistant to most forms of clubroot.— ℳatt (@matttomic) February 24, 2020
ME, NODDING: you’re damn right
I ended up picking High River, a town of around 14,000 which was entirely evacuated during the Alberta floods of 2013. I did a little research about the flood and its effects on the town. Then I wrote a damn good first scene. But, once I delved into the politics surrounding the flood’s aftermath, I really took issue with killing fictional citizens.
Things got political. I just wanted to write about Alberta without getting political. Much of my ambition came from the recent trip I took to Lethbridge in back November for my cousins’s wedding.
A Note on Canadian Fiction:
As a writer, I do have a devotion to telling neo-noir stories set in Canada. I feel like Canadian fiction has this weird stereotype of being boring and lame. Like “The Painted Door” by Sinclair Ross, which is a very good story, but is also the longest and most agonizing read of all time for Canadian 10th grade English students. Spoilers: It’s about an affair but doesn’t contain any sex and the husband dies in a snowstorm.
It’s Canadian AF.
Urban Exploration Returns!
My binge through urbex videos back in February may have tamed but my love has not died. Turns out that High River’s got its own urbex videos from Beachwood Estates. Built on a floodplain, the upscale on the development was purchased by the Alberta government after the flood. Properties were auctioned off at nearly a quarter of their value on the premise that they would to be relocated.
Creating Some Characters
The only character I manged to salvage from the “Pete Buttigieg is a Serial Killer” story was the final girl, or rather, the final victim who got shoved into a trunk. I dusted her off and made her younger, just a collegiate small town good girl who revisits her small home town during Easter Break.
In “White Rabbit”, she became Ashlynn, who OF COURSE visits the decayed remains of the suburb she grew up in, only to confront a troubling aspect of her past. There’s slut-shaming and masklophobia and some graffiti and small town diner talk. It’s teenage feminist horror at its best.
So yes. The bunny stuff.
My obsession with bunny mascots originates from the “Bunnyman” urban legend. I’ve been obsessed with it since high school. I’ve wanted to write my own “bunnyman” short story for YEARS, and have tried and failed on a few different occasions. Now, in “White Rabbit”, I FINALLY GOT MY CHANCE!
The bunny costume part isn’t a major aspect of this story, but the influence is significant. It’s there. I’m really proud of this one. It’s like my VILE MEN stuff blended perfectly with my new horror-based stuff.
Everyone Needs Some Easter Feminist Horror
Want your fill? Join my Patreon at the $5 tier and you will have access to my latest horror, “White Rabbit” in April. This tier also grants you access to exclusive Patron-only blogs such as my A LOOK BACK feature and my CANDID UPDATE posts, which get a little more personal than usual.
I want to keep writing. I want to stay up late, to write until the early hours, to make these graphics and amazing playlists, to tear myself apart and put words on pages. Your support would mean the dang world to me.