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Cafe Doom  |  The Critique Crypt  |  General writing chat  |  Story idea?
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Author Topic: Story idea?  (Read 3580 times)

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Offline Geoff_N

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Story idea?
« on: July 18, 2007, 01:58:46 AM »
One of my wife's colleagues has inadvertently given me an idea for a story. He was single-handedly sailing to the Isle of Man from Anglesey at night. His boat smashed into something and capsized. After scrambling aboard and using his spotlight, he realised he'd hit a large metal box that must have slipped off a container ship. The top of the container was just an inch or so above the water line.

Apparently it's not that rare for containers to be lost. They usually sink straight away or after a few hours. Maybe that one was packed with airtight bagged cargo. So my formulating story has the container packed with illegal immigrants, whose souls reach out to him --- the container follows his boat as it limps to port. He hears knocking. Loose cargo or someone still alive? Or undead?

I e-mailed the coastguard to ask what they do when they are told about such dangers to shipping drifting around, but they haven't replied. I realise they must sink eventually, but surely they'd make sure? I'll be on the Liverpool to Douglas ferry on Saturday morning - I'd hate for it to hit one of those partially submerged containers - it's a long swim!

I think my story should be relocated in the Mediterranean because I can't think there'd be many illegal immigrants in / on the Irish Sea - what do you think?

Geoff

Offline Ed

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Re: Story idea?
« Reply #1 on: July 18, 2007, 03:08:49 AM »
Sounds like a great idea to me, Geoff. My guess would be the coastguard would take the cheapest option when dealing with a partially submerged container - possibly mark it with a buoy? You'd need a fair sized vessel to crane a container from the water, and I can't see any salvage men being interested unless they're guaranteed a decent payback from it. Hmm, difficult one.

Interesting, though :smiley:
Planning is an unnatural process - it is much more fun to do something.  The nicest thing about not planning is that failure comes as a complete surprise, rather than being preceded by a period of worry and depression. [Sir John Harvey-Jones]

Offline Geoff_N

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Re: Story idea?
« Reply #2 on: July 18, 2007, 07:55:15 AM »
I think they're more likely to shoot a few hole in it to ensure it sinks.

I'm on a ferry Liverpool to Isle of Man this Saturday. Guess who's going to be pestering the crew and the coastguard at both ends?

G

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