Creative works by author Dan Foley.

Suspending Disbelief

Suspending disbelief . . . how hard can it be?

When writing fiction, especially science fiction or horror, the author must find a way to draw the reader into the tale by making the impossible seem possible. While you may not believe in aliens, vampires, ghosts, demons, etc., we need to make you believe in them while you’re reading the story. It’s not as hard as you think it might be if you consider some of the reality shows that have taken over your TV.

Here are some scenes you’ll never see.

Moonshiners:

“Say Billy-Bob, this sure is good shine.”

“Sure is Booger. Wait . . . did you hear something? Quiet it might be the cops. We can’t get caught making this shine here in the woods. I sure don’t want to go to jail.”

“Oh, Billy-Bob, it’s just the camera man and the production crew.”

“Hush, Bugger, the audience isn’t supposed to know there’s a camera crew up here. We’re supposed to be all alone.”

“That’s true Booger. If they knew, they might wonder why try to hide all this stuff. “

Yeah, then they might wonder why the cops don’t arrest us and use the tapes for evidence.”

“Well, hah on them. They don’t know it’s just water in this jar.”

“Well, if we’re done with this episode we can go watch those firemen get another dumb-ass cat out of a tree. I wonder how them cats get up there any way?”

Or, how about Street Outlaws, where a band of street racers known as the 405, race each other and all comers on the streets of Oklahoma? They show up with dozens of cars, all of them trailered in, camera crews and lighting, and then film the races, all the while hoping the cops don’t show up. How the hell do they manage that?

And then there’s everything Alaska. I’m convinced they could make a show called “Taking a Dump in Alaska” and it would get more than its fair share of rabid followers. “Hey, come look at this one Zeek. It’s still steaming!”

So, when I tell you a necromancer is watching the hero through the eyes of a dead alligator, I expect you to believe it  . . . at least while you’re reading the book.