Embedding a story within a story

Ever since I was 15 and read Wuthering Heights for the first time, I have wanted to embed one story inside another. The technique allows the reader (and I’m assuming the writer) to get deeper into an imaginary world or worlds, like those diorama boxes I used to enjoy looking at as a child.

I’ve got an idea for a story that I am hoping to embed. I’ve had it swirling around inside me for a while. It takes place in a dark and melodramatic world which draws on my love of the film The Wicked Lady (if you haven’t seen it, watch it and imagine what it was like to be a three- or four- year old girl and see it for the first time) and everything that Daphne du Maurier ever wrote. It’s quite a departure from my usual, so it should be a lot of fun to write. Holiday writing, if you like, rather than holiday reading.

The other half – the modern half – that my dark tale will be embedded into I’m less sure of, partly because it is a newer idea, and partly because it’s not complete yet. So I’ll tell you about that at a later date when I’ve got it perfectly flat in my folded head.

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