Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Blog Flash 2012, August 29: Masquerade

I wondered how this prompt would lead to my own project.  Then I thought: "Masque of the Red Death" by Edgar Allen Poe.

An apocalyptic classic.  A plague rages through the country, so a wealthy and eccentric prince gathers a thousand friends together in one of his castles with much food, wine and entertainment.

A few of my favorite themes come up, which I either got from reading Poe or from reading writers who learned it from Poe.

In the face of disaster, the wealthy will try to hide away and ignore the agony of the masses.

Those who can will party hard for tomorrow they may die.

Poe completely builds his own vibrant setting: a suite of seven rooms each decorated with a color theme with matching windows.

I don't remember the quote exactly, but Poe said that every element of a short story should work to create a mood and theme.

And though you may weld shut the doors with "furnaces and massy hammers" death will find us all.

A great resource for all things apocalyptic, my man Megaton:

The Masque of the Red Death