And now for something completely different.
After I wrote that bit of flash fiction about a time traveler I have been poking around with the idea, trying to see if I could get a novel out of that concept.
I think I can, actually. I’m going to try, anyway. What’s more, I am going to do this one differently. I already have the beginnings of an outline. It’s derivative, I’ll admit, drawing from Frequency (an underrated little gem of a film, in my opinion) and Back To The Future–but then, is there anything new one can do with Time Travel? The Man Who Folded Himself has already been written, and in my opinion that’s the last word on the subject.
My working title is Wind And Cars And People Of The Past*, and the basic outline goes like this:
Stacie is a time traveler, as outlined in my prior posts (i.e. she must be in motion spatially to move through time.) She makes a comfortable living by buying collectibles in the past and selling them in the present. (2013 is her “home time” and I think she can’t move forward past the current subjective present.)
Her main contact is a guy named Mark who runs a little storefront (most of his business being on-line.) He’s a loner, a geek, constantly stressed over money and depressed.
One day Stacie shows up at his shop–with an item that he specifically said he was looking for, that he has a big ticket buyer for–to find the whole building burned down. (Stores downstairs, apartments upstairs.) Mark and the other people who lived in those apartments are all dead.
Stacie decides to go back to save them, and finds that Mark started the explosion by committing suicide by gassing himself–the gas spread through the building and caused the explosion.
In the process of explaining what will happen and why he shouldn’t do this, Stacie lets out her secret, that she can travel through time. Mark begs her for one trip, to see a concert. Against her better judgement, Stacie agrees.
After the concert, Mark bumps into a drunk and they get into a fight. Mark ends up knocking the drunk out. (Not hard, the drunk was already staggering.)
Upon returning to the present, Stacie and Mark find out that Mark no longer exists–he has been erased from the timeline. After doing research (helped by Mark’s encyclopedic knowledge of music trivia) they figure out why.
The drunk that Mark knocked out was prevented from driving home from the concert, and so he didn’t get into a fatal car accident. Because he lived, he went on to become a huge rock star. The rock star’s music inspired a psychotic to go on a killing spree, and one of the victims was Mark’s mother.
Now Stacie and Mark have to go back in time and find the killer before he kill’s Marks mother (or, ideally, anybody at all.)
So–what do you think? It’d be a break from The Book Of Lost Doors, and while it’s not The Happy Fluffy Bunnies To Whom Nothing Bad Ever Happened, it’s a little bit lighter in tone.
*Bonus geek points to the first person who can identify the source of the quote. Google is cheating.