Every book I’ve written

Over on Facebook, writers are listing every single book they’ve written. There is no real reason for this other than it’s a neat form of procrastination. I enjoy distractions, too, so now I am also doing the thing. Does this mean I easily give in to peer pressure? Yes.

Here is a list of every book I have ever written:

Majestic [unpublished] — This is the first novel I ever finished. I was 13 and we were bouncing back and forth between hotels and my grandparents’ house. I had been interested in writing years before this, having knocked out various short stories and DIY comic books, but this was the first actual book I completed. It clocked in around the 100k mark and was pure fantasy, a genre I no longer care much about. I was big into The Hobbit at the time and it definitely showed in this book. Ditto for Chronicles of Narnia. The most I can remember about the plot is it involved a character the same age as myself traveling to a mystical land to save his niece from evil. The casino my mother frequented, the hellhole that ruined my childhood, is called the Majestic Star, if you’re wondering where the book’s title comes from.

Conspiracy [abandoned] — Between ages 12 and 16, I lived in a hotel. Sometimes we stayed at my grandmother’s house when we could no longer afford our room, and every couple weekends I’d stay the night at my brother’s trailer. This is where I first tried alcohol. Age 14, drunk off Jameson and watching a forgettable film, I got the greatest idea in the world: what if every conspiracy theory in the world was…true? I set off to handwrite the greatest book of all time. I filled one 70-page notebook and immediately lost interest.

Taking Lives with .45s [unpublished] — Also written during my hotel years. This one clocked in around the 40k mark, I think. It told the story of a kid my age with my same mannerisms who begins taking an interest in serial killing. I may have been reading way too many true crime books back then (now I just listen to true crime podcasts). Of everything I’ve ever written, this is probably the most embarrassing.

Zombie Punks [unpublished] — Sometimes I think about trying to rewrite this one. I wrote it when I was 16 for NaNoWriMo. It’s about a guy in a punk band who pays his rent by letting some weird scientist perform experiments on him. Somehow he finds himself impregnated with an alien creature. Also I think maybe a witch is involved?

True Stories Told By a Liar [published] — I was 19 and noticed some Australian small press asking for book submissions. Specifically, story collections. “I have written short stories!” I screamed to nobody, and immediately emailed a messy word doc compiling every story I had written in my teenage years. It was accepted the next day and published a month later. I was extremely proud and stupid. The press refused to publish the book as an eBook because “things get confusing when you live in Australia”. A year later I realized I had made a terrible mistake and requested they remove the book from print. They obliged and now we shall never speak of this collection again. Still, though, killer fucking title, right?

They Might Be Demons [published] — When I was 17, I joined the staff of Dark Moon Digest as a volunteer editor. I knew nothing about anything, and I will forever be grateful to Stan Swanson for introducing me to the horror lit scene. It changed my life for the better in so many ways, I couldn’t possibly list them all here. In addition to the magazine, Stan also published books via Dark Moon Books. He had this idea of releasing collections of flash fiction, each collection written by a different author. I loved this and came up with a concept that involved every story in the collection taking place in the same town, on the same day. Back then I thought of it strictly as a collection, but the more I think about it now, maybe it was more of a mosaic novel. Who knows? Anyway. The book was called They Might Be Demons and it remains one of my favorite titles I’ve ever come up with. Too bad the book was terrible! It was published in June 2013, one month shy of my 20th birthday. It is currently out of print and I aim to keep it that way. Nowadays, Lori Michelle and I control complete ownership over Dark Moon Digest, and editor Eric J. Guignard owns Dark Moon Books. Stan’s still writing, but he’s slowed down a bit to focus on his music aspirations.

Toxicity [published] — It’s hard to pinpoint when I wrote this book. I have clear memories of beginning the very first draft back when I was 12, before we’d abandoned our house completely but after it had lost power that final time. We’d stay in hotels then when we ran out of money, my father would drop my mother and myself off at the house and we’d bum around. There was no electricity, so we sat out on the porch a lot. I went through my mother’s collection of books over and over, finding titles I’d never noticed before. This is how I discovered Richard Price’s Clockers, which introduced me to crime fiction. I was already a huge fan of crime films but had never read a book in the genre and it made me hungry to try something myself, so I pulled out a notebook and began the opening pages of a novel titled Jericho. A family much like my own family wins the lotto, becomes spoiled slobs, then multiple criminals break in on the same day to rob them. Throughout the next several years, I would frequently return to the manuscript as my own writing abilities strengthened and rewrite it. At one point I changed the title from Jericho to Black Cadillacs, but whenever I told people about the book they would all act very confused about the title, so I changed it again, this time to Toxicity. It was eventually accepted by Post Mortem Press, a small publishing company based in Ohio. They released it in March 2014, four months before my 21st birthday. I don’t think this book holds up very well and sometimes I think about rewriting it, but what’s the point in stressing over it? I’d prefer to focus on new books and leave this one behind. It isn’t complete trash but it’s definitely cringeworthy.

The Mind is a Razorblade [published] — This was another NaNoWrimo book, written when I was 17. I’d originally titled it Oblivion but would later change the title after hearing “Heartbeats” by Jose Gonzalez (which itself is a cover of a song by The Knife). Like most of my published books, this one went through many rewrites. It was eventually published in 2014 by Kraken Press, only a couple months after Toxicity. I was 21 by then. Looking back, 2014 was a very good year for me.

Float On [abandoned] — I dedicated so much goddamn time to this book and it’s never going to work the way I want it to. I was 18 and living alone in my first apartment across the country from my entire family and working at Walmart and killing myself for shit wages. I was hungry to create and this is what I thought was worth my time.  It’s about a guy recently diagnosed with cancer who meets a traveling group of immortal monster hunters. There’s just not enough story here to make it worth the effort. I’ve probably written 100,000 words on this thing and it’s all a rambling mess. In five years I’ll probably try rewriting it again and give up six months afterward. It’s doomed.

How to Successfully Kidnap Strangers [published] — I wrote this in an insane two-week sprint. It’s about a small press author who kidnaps a book reviewer while high on meth. I still really like this one. Bizarro Pulp Press published it in 2015.

The Nightly Disease [published] — I have written far too much about this novel in previous blog posts. To quickly catch you up to speed: I wrote it while working the night shift at a hotel. DarkFuse published it in the last fucking week of 2016, then went bankrupt six months later and refused to pay me royalties. I then self-published it under my own indie press, Perpetual Motion Machine. This is the best book I’ve written that is currently published.

Carnivorous Lunar Activities [published] — This one comes out 02/22/19, just a couple weeks away now. Fangoria’s publishing it. It will be my fifth published novel (not counting They Might Be Demons). In July I will be 26. I have no idea what the fuck I’m doing.

Who Will Survive and What Will Be Left of Them [unpublished] — This is the latest book I finished. It clocks in at 113,000 words. It’s about missing children and demon cops. I like to describe it as “Stranger Things meets The Texas Chain Saw Massacre“. The title isn’t official yet, but it’s one I’ve been using with submissions. Two other possible titles: The Evocation of Mother and Touch the Night. I don’t know which of these three titles are best or if any of them are good at all. Right now I’m just submitting the book out to agents and small presses, seeing what kind of nibbles I might get. So far, it isn’t looking very good hahaha.

Casanova Curbstomp [work-in-progress] — One of three novels I’m currently dedicating my novel-writing time to. This is a crime comedy about a Little League umpire addicted to internet pornography. I’m about 16,000 words into the first draft.

I Believe in Mister Bones [work-in-progress] — The second novel I’m working on. I don’t want to say much about this one as the concept is too cool to spill so early. But I will say it’s very much in the horror genre.

Expect Radioactivity [work-in-progress] — This is a science fiction horror novel I’ve been working on for a while now. I haven’t made a lot of progress, writing-wise, but I’m deep into research and outlining. This one is kind of complex and requires me to be smarter than I realistically am, so I’m trying to educate myself a little bit more before I fully dedicate to the writing. It’s gonna be fucking rad, though, if I can pull it off.


NOTE: There are almost definitely other books I have abandoned that are not listed here. Thankfully, I have already forgotten they once existed, which is probably the way it’s meant to be.

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