As if all this wasn't enough fun, one of our group members began posting short stories with his photos. Some were funny, while others were extremely moving and poignant. Seeing his images with their stories was all I needed to have "permission" to create my own.
What follows are several images and the stories they inspired. Unlike my friend's stories that inspired me, mine are more in the vein of noir fiction, probably influenced by my love of the detective novel, and particularly the work of Elmore Leonard, the King of Crime.
Skyline Auto Sales is the first I remember writing and when I looked it up on FB, I found that I'd dedicated it to the photographer who first inspired me with his stories on our "secret" site.
So, once again, Dewitt, I thank you for yet another gift!
Homage to Dewitt...
It had been 3 years since, Melinda, passing through and destitute, bought the old beater at the Skyline. She knew within days that it was not like any other car she'd ever owned. She'd tried to make the payments, but her checks always came back, un-cashed. The car's dents and rust began to fade almost as soon as she drove off the lot. The cracks in the windshield got smaller and smaller until you'd never know the window had been shattered. In 3 years she'd never had to put in a drop of gas, and the upholstery... wasn't it ripped at one time? Now sitting in her car and staring at the Skyline again, she barely noticed her phone vibrating on the seat next to her. "Now who could that be?" she thought, as she noticed the number that appeared in the display: 317-219-0513.
Grandfather's Photos (2011)
Elliot, who turned 11 in 2085, always loved looking at his grandfather's old photos.
Double-Ds at Marlow's (2012)
Instinctively his hand found the knot on the back of his throbbing head as he struggled to his feet. Instincts? Where were his instincts when he let those two goons flank him at Marlow's? It was a rookie mistake that cost him a concussion and his snub nosed. Focus! he told himself, but his eyes weren't working any better than his knees. He let the storefront hold him up while he strained to put the pieces together. Marlow's at 3, she'd said. Be there. His eyes still wouldn't focus, but this much was clear: she and her double-D's had set him up and he'd fallen for it -- again.
11th and Brookside (2014)
Evelyn had boarded the strange bus knowing that she had to put distance between herself and the events at 11th and Brookside. She couldn't be found here after what she'd seen! After riding for what seemed like hours the driver signaled the last stop of the day. Evelyn stepped off the bus and collapsed to her knees; she was back in exactly the place she most needed to avoid!
Nothing to Worry About (2015)
"Come on!" Elliot said to Irma as they approached the front door of the abandoned house. "Don't be such a scaredy cat. There's nothing to worry about, I tell you!"
White Lightening (2016)
Upon seeing the old place I felt a tug inside, and the metallic taste – the one that comes just before you wretch – filled my mouth. I had to swallow hard. Although it had been more than thirty years since I'd set foot on the old homestead, I could hear the crackle of the flames under Daddy's still, and smell the pungent sweetness of corn mash. How many times had Lila and I hidden in the corn crib out back as Daddy railed at imagined foes while under the spell of his White Lightning?