Short Story Press Presents Inside Melting House by Matthew Kilpatrick.
“Inside Malting House” is a short story by Matthew Kilpatrick, a new, up-and-coming writer who hopes to make a big splash in the speculative fiction-writing world sometime soon. This hard-working and dedicated writer has many ideas and is coming up with new ones all the time, of which “Inside Malting House” is but one and one of the earliest. It’s a subtle and simple tale that acknowledges that sometimes it’s the horrors we don’t know or understand that are the most frightening.
The story itself focuses on a mostly-unnamed narrator, living in a small, unremarkable town, and his contemplating a mysterious and sinister abandoned home known as the Malting House. He reflects on the home’s past history and its current place in and effect upon his life and those around him.
The house contains a sinister secret that dates back several decades, but nobody living knows its true nature since nobody who has ever ventured inside the house never returns; they are never seen again. Due to this fact, very few people go into the house, but our narrator wonders: what does the house really contain? How did it come to be the way it is? What happens to the people who go inside and seemingly vanish? What, ultimately, will he do about the Malting House and what it portends for him?
The story explores the aspect of contemplating the unknown and the unknowable and our desire to know ultimate truths even if they may come at a deep and personal cost. It also examines how despite the ability to live in and progress our normal lives in the world as we understand it, there is still so much that effects all of us that we do not, and perhaps cannot, understand. It also deals with the secrets people keep and why they keep them, and why perhaps their motives may not always be fully comprehensible even to themselves.
This story will be a creepy and unsettling addition to any group of stories it finds itself amongst and its implications are meant to stay with the reader long after the story has ended.
- Short Story Press, May 2012
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