Would you live in a house in the middle of the rainforest for a couple of weeks if someone paid you a huge sum of money to do so? What if it’s a twenty-minute trek on foot to the nearest village? What if frightening things begin happening while you are there?
Of course you’d try to escape.
But what if, for some extraordinary reason, every way out leads back to the place of your nightmares?
The following is a house that's similiar to the one Gemma and Norm Guthrie find waiting for them in the forest in Shroud.
It’s basically a traditional Malay house on stilts. However, I decided that it would make more sense for the story if the Guthries are given modern bathroom facilities and an area where botanist Norm would do his work, and so I included the annex which sits on the ground at the back of the house.
I gave this little house a lot of thought because originally, I had planned for more scary things to happen there. I couldn’t include all of my ideas though because the plot needed to move on and the characters needed to shift locations (to an even stranger place). So, I shelved the unused ideas for another story, another day.
Traditional wooden houses on stilts are still found in villages across Malaysia and other Southeast Asian countries. The stilts keep the house secure from creatures on the ground and also help to cool and ventilate the air flowing through the house.
Images from Talkaboutart (site in Malay)
An extraordinary feature of traditional Malay house is that it’s built without the use of nails. The timbers are fit together using wedges, pegs and holes, and then bound by strips of bamboo or rattan. This allows the house to be taken apart and moved easily.
So, can you recall the name of the curious little house in the rainforest in Shroud?
If you’re the first to tweet or DM your answer to me by 30th October 2017, you will receive a souvenir via post and a big virtual hug. Hope to hear from you soon.