“A Hundred Fireflies Outside” Commentary

To read “A Hundred Fireflies Outside,” go here.

“A Hundred Fireflies Outside” is one of those stories I had way too much fun writing. Growing up on a steady diet of horror books and movies, anytime I have the opportunity to write about the genre in a different way always makes me happy.

If the names of the characters don’t give it away, then I’m hoping the plethora of horror movie clichés let’s you know what I’m doing with “A Hundred Fireflies Outside”. Basically, I wanted to do a horror movie without any of the horror, so that by the time you’re done with the story, you know exactly what’s going to happen next. You even have a rough idea who the final girl is going to be:

The man at the last gas station seemed to be familiar enough with the place to tell them not to go there. He even offered his own cabin in another part of the area for free – “You can stay as long as you want. Seriously. Just don’t go there.” – but they laughed it off, the way only teenagers know how to do without regret. They bought some [product placements]. Ashley noticed a board by the bathroom which was filled with pictures of missing teenagers. When she said something about it, everyone but Jay ignored her. There goes Ashley being all serious. They all piled back into the van, spent two minutes getting the van to start – “This always happens!” – and they were off again.

I’m particularly proud of the story’s ending, the way the characters’ ignorance of what’s going to happen next is magnified. It’s got that perpetual high school feeling going on. Or maybe that’s just me…