I have been in a deep, dark and murderous place these past weeks – as author and writer, and thoroughly enjoying myself with the latest project of Marie Balustrade.
If you didn´t catch the first three short story sets, as they emerged one scheming chapter after the other, you can curl up on your favourite lounge chair with a potent brew of your choice, and read the compiled versions here:
For this criminal party, my guests were asked to submit three to four sets of photographs, the choice was entirely theirs and were not confined to a particular genre or theme. The short stories that ensued were based on the set of photographs and their titles, or lack thereof. The photograph determines the path of the plot and is woven into the dialogue and setting. Originally launched in 2016, the first batch of stories were a tribute to the admirable work of the photographers who are scattered all over the globe. This continues to be the idea and foundation behind the work, but with the added dimension that all the stories contain a relevant social issue that needs to be brought up to generate awareness.
What has changed for the 2020 format? Well, for starters, the social issues place a central role human trafficking, organ harvesting, online scams, organised crime, and a host of other delightful morsels, threading the photographs, story and characters together into a tapestry of deceit. These are definitely not stories to swoon over nor are the main characters devastatingly handsome James Bond types. That is just not Marie Balustrade´s style. Unlike the 2016 series, where each set of photographs was a stand-alone story, this time around it is one story broken down into three or four chapters so there is more continuity. Lastly, one character from each set will “travel” on to the next story with some unexpected twist of fate.
It is not too late to jump on the story wagon. Tomorrow the fourth series will be launched, taking the reader through another roller coaster ride of organised crime. So if you are a cliff hanger junkie, stay tune to Marie Balustrade´s blog!