Matt Thompson’s story “Luminaria” was published in Metaphorosis on Friday, 29 July 2016.
My original plan for this story was for a kind of Borgesian pirate yarn – magic realism meets boys-own adventure, or something along those lines. I’m not sure I succeeded, but the concept of a metaphysical shipboard mutiny I’d finally arrived at stayed with me. I adapted a shorter, abandoned story I had lurking in the ‘trunk’ and it turned out to be a perfect fit.
So many tales of long sea voyages have an almost unearthly aspect to them – mermaids, whirlpools, manifestations of the mysterious, unknown world that stretches into the deeps. The narrative was kicked into gear by an image I had of lights, hovering through the ocean fog, extinguishing one by one until only a single flame is visible. When that disappears the betrayal is complete, and the mutineers must serve out their penance alongside the dead.
Which was all very well, but since it was getting a bit downbeat I decided to spice it up with some (implied) sex and violence. Works for everyone else, right?
And thus a story was born.
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