Friday, November 15, 2013

Darkness

Posted by: Steve Vera
There's a reason people are afraid of the dark. It's because when you're by yourself, surrounded by trees in the dead of the night and you can't see two feet in front of you, the scampering of a chipmunk sounds like the charge of an angry grizzly bear. 

Or a hungry troll, take your pick. 
Now that's some darkness.

Most of us in this day and age don't get a chance to be plunged into pure darkness; I mean, it's the twenty-first century after all, right? There's always some avenue or street nearby, the drone of a highway or some headlights coming your way, and even if you live waaaaay deep in the suburbs, there are still those pesky light posts to deal with. It takes effort to be immersed in complete darkness. 

Unless of course...you have a good friend whose father built a cabin in the middle of the woods in a itsy-bitsy town you've never heard of. When all you need to do to be surrounded by pitch black is to step outside onto the back porch once night comes and close the door behind you. Or sleep in a sarcophagus.   

It's funny, I thought I properly understood the complete magnitude that darkness can have on a person, but it wasn't until this past October while spending two weeks at said cabin (yeah, I was there all by myself for Halloween) that I fully experienced darkness in its full splendor. I actually dared myself to take a stroll at midnight through straight up, back-of-the-closet dark woodlands. Then I found out why it's so easy to become superstitious. Why it's so easy to believe in the supernatural, which of course ties in quite nicely to the theme of this blog site, Here Be Magic. And lemme tell you something. Out in the dark forests...there are monsters out there. Sitting up in trees just watching. And lurking. Talk about nerve racking, I figured I'd do that stroll a couple of times while I was out there but nope. Just that once. 

The good news is that it provided me with a new arsenal of inspiration to draw on and really helped me texture my writing further for Book III of my Last of the Shardyn trilogy. Speaking of which, I should probably mention that Book II--Through the Black Veil comes out Nov. 25th which is...whoa. Just ten days away. That's pretty awesome. Allow me to post a pic of the cover...
And yes, there's magic in those there pages. A police chief, a reforming sociopath, and a band of magic wielding knights cross from Earth to Earth's magical twin Theia, to battle the Lord of the Underworld. Dun dun dun dunnnnnn. 

Keep your nightlight on...

Thanks for the glance.

Steve out. 

9 comments:

  1. Dude, I don't scare easy AT ALL and I doubt I could have spent 2 weeks alone in the woods near Halloween. My hat's off to you, sir.

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  2. Thank you! It definitely got creepy sometimes, especially during the two windstorms that hit while I was there, and I REFUSED to look out the windows at night. I was afraid I'd see a pair of eyes staring back at me! :)

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    1. I kept waiting for you to look out the window. I would have waved at you. ;)

      Tiff!

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    2. Hahahaha! Had I only known, Tiffany, had I only known...;)

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  3. I grew up on a farm and yeah, the level of darkness out int he country is very different than city living. I remember once playing a game with a pack of my cousins, seeing how far we dared venture up the driveway past the demarcation of light through by the porch into shadow... I never made it more than a few steps before dashing back to safety.

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    1. Ah yeah,
      Crazy how visceral the dark can be out in the country! I actually went for a 1/4 mile hike at midnight with a walking stick and a big ole Marine KA-BAR...:) The creaking of the trees was the worst I think...

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  4. We live in a passive solar community in New Mexico with very strong light restrictions - no street lights at all, all house and landscape lighting directed downwards at low wattage. It is VERY dark. Took us quite a while to get used to it. Now everywhere else feels unbearably bright.

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  5. My friend lived in New Mexico! And she says the same thing, I can only imagine what the night sky looks like out there. Thanks for chiming in! :)

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    1. The stars are AMAZING. We're at high altitude, too, so double-whammy. Lots of pro and amateur astronomers here.

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