August 28, 2013 by Laird
I avoid writing story notes, but down the road there’s a project that will require them. So here are a couple of items for those who are interested in arcana.
Luke Honey of “Blackwood’s Baby” is basically my projection of how the Kid from McCarthy’s Blood Meridian might’ve turned out if he’d gone to visit kin in Utah and then hunted big game in Africa instead of going to war in Mexico. It’s not a point for point comparison, the characters aren’t mirrors. Their provenance is merely similar. Nonetheless, Luke Honey’s barely supressed rage, the savagery percolating through his blood, the deep, black hole shot through his soul, is most certainly inspired by what I imagined the Kid as an adult might experience.
“Blackwood’s Baby” and my other hunting story “The Men from Porlock” were written to mirror one another in the new collection. Miller, the protagonist of the latter tale, has a secret history that isn’t touched therein. We know he was a sniper in WWI, and we know he’s suffering from battle fatigue. But there are other, darker details left unscoped. What I’ll tell you now is a fact alluded to in the text: it was Miller who taught Luke Honey to shoot.