What if…? and RULE 34

Some years ago I got my favorite movie, Jaws, on DVD as a Christmas gift. We’ll leave the probing psychological question of why my favorite movie is about a man-eating shark for another time. The DVD was the 25th anniversary release and the DVD was chock full of extras and interviews.

In an interview with Jaws’ writer Peter Benchley, he talked about the birth of the idea of Jaws. He said that he had always wondered what would happen if a big shark was attacking people and wouldn’t go away. Then he read a newspaper article about a guy who caught a 4,500 pound great white shark off of Long Island. Inspiration had met information and a little while later he started work on Jaws. And thus, for thirty-five years people have been afraid to go in the water. When I say people, I mean me.

What if: The question that sparks most of my writing and story ideas. I can map the genesis of my idea for a novel to the frustrating experience of losing my sense of smell and getting no answers from doctors. I can map the genesis of my novel to when I asked the question: “What if a guy started losing all of his senses and didn’t know why?” Once again, information and experience had met inspiration, and five years later the result was Senseless. Maybe I could get Richard Dreyfuss to play Phineas’ father.

When Lee told me about the concept of Rule 34, I was amazed. How had I never seen this concept portrayed in a movie or book? I immediately started in asking what if…?

What if a guy just introduced to the internet and internet porn stumbled upon a disturbing world?

What if that guy believed that he had some control in this world?

What if he was wrong?

Anyway, the genesis of this story, Rule 34, is the line of questioning above. It has been drafted a couple of times, but I more than welcome feedback and constructive critique.


Read it here RULE 34

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