Featured Fiction: Room Tone by Gale Zoë Garnett

Room Tone
“At that moment, on the last day of filming, the sound director shouts, ‘Quiet, everyone. Quiet on the set. Complete silence please. Room Tone.’” The practical application allows for re-recording with a room unaltered by other sounds; simultaneously, it is a moment in which an entire cast collectively pauses and reflects on the weeks, the months of work that have gotten them to that final minute. Gale Zoë Garnett’s novella Room Tone plays with this notion of reflection: at the end of a passionately delicious relationship, a project, one life stage before it progresses to another, what is held in the silence that is left behind?

Nica Lind is the daughter of a renowned French actress and Swedish cinematographer, born and raised on the backdrop of the classics, old Hollywood glamour and artistic expression. Heavily influenced by her all-access pass to a local Montmartre cinema, young Dominica falls in love with film and, as a beautiful teenaged woman, enters the family business. European cinematic successes lead her to the office of a big-shot agent in Los Angeles, who finds her a high-paying role as the female star of a hit Western TV series. Eventually, Nica returns to her European roots artistically dissatisfied with the limitations placed upon her as a result of her Hollywood successes.

Nica’s tongue is sharp, her sense of self, unwavering, and her raw talent mixed with intuition, knowledge and profound emotional strength. Through moments of criticism, acclaim, love and loss, Room Tone is an eyes-wide-open look at European and American film making – the beautiful, the sexy, and the down and dirty – that resonates long after the final chapter.


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