This is a blog about By All Means (Nine Arches Press), a short story collection by Tim Love. It's ISBN 978-0-9570984-9-7 and is on sale from Inpress

Monday, 14 January 2013

The Big Climb

This is one of the stories in the book where a main character is absent. The elephant in the room materializes only a third of the way into the story when the little boy, alone for the first time, starts crying. The father tries to bond more closely with the son (or at least tries to get information from him), but the jokes fall flat. Sid and Doris seem an impossibly happy, settled couple, though the main character strives to imagine that they have their secret problems too. His expectations have never been high, it seems - "Laundrettes became part of my social life, only to fade away with marriage. Now it's time to introduce my son to them". It's going to be a big climb - for his son if not for him.

I pepper the piece with sentences that are ready to mean more - "From now on the views would be boring: more of the same but smaller each time we look back"; "We'll just have to wait and see", etc. It's not clear how confidently he maintains the illusion that one day she'll return.

Parts of a Swanage campsite feature here, as well as a caravan site near Naples. I've never been to the Lake District with children - I've been once with a bunch of students, and once with my wife.

The top of p.22 shouldn't be a new paragraph.

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