The Story Behind the Story | Watcher in the Window

WATCHER IN THE WINDOW - Flashfiction by Dennis Lowery
Original cover concept.

Pictures tell stories—or are the seed of one—and I collect interesting ones from the public domain, those with a Creative Commons license or I that buy to use them. I came across a photograph of an abandoned store. A close up of its front door and windows with the old metal horizontal blinds bent down like when you don’t want to raise them to peek out. I thought… who’s inside looking out and added it to my collection. On the morning of October 6, while considering other Halloween story ideas, it came to me. I found another suitable image—of a ghoulish face—and took the ‘behind the glass’ black of the storefront photo, made it a transparent section, and then moved the face into it. The figure became the watcher in the window. Over that morning’s coffee, I wrote the first two drafts. I polished it more and here is the result.

Side note: In the story, Caligari Street comes from a 1920s movie titled The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, arguably ‘the first true horror film.’ Which depicts a brutal authority manipulating people to serve its agenda and that weakens the fabric of character (society).

A post-apocalyptic tale of a society debilitated by politics and devastated by an event that turned part of the population into inhuman creatures.

You can read it here.