I was sitting in a hot tub about two years ago. I did this in lieu of a workout. I sat with the water bubbling all around me, a jet hitting the soreness near my tailbone. I watched women walk by in bikinis. I watched fat guys limp past in baggy trunks and thought maybe I should’ve worked out after all. Then, without notice, I slipped deeper into my mind and wandered around in those dark corridors for a while.
It’s strange how the mind does that. One moment you’re right here in a loud hot tub at the health club fully aware of everything going on around you, and the next you’re oblivious to the outside world and lost in meandering thoughts you didn’t even know you had.
Well my mind meandered, down one hallway and up the next, then in circles and winding pathways. The economy was in the tank. I had, a few years before, watched most of my friends lose their jobs. I’d seen a gigantic corporation lie to its employees about their job security and then three months later yank the carpet out from beneath their feet. I understand business is business, but my father taught me a long time ago that “there is a right way and a wrong way to go about doing something, and that asshole did it the wrong way.” Such was the story of that workplace scenario.
On the news, there was story after story about businesses shutting down. Some with notice to their employees, others with no notice and no intention to cut those final checks for work already done. I heard horror stories from friends about how simply shifting some paperwork and new filings rearranged long-standing companies so employees lost benefits and seniority. It was happening everywhere. In every industry, nationwide, stories of this sort were coming out. Add to that the fact that even responsible people were losing their homes to foreclosure and retirement accounts were slashed almost overnight, it was frightening.
“What happens,” I thought, “when you take and take from someone, mess with his livelihood and life to the point that he has nothing left to lose? That’s probably where all these ‘going postal’ stories come from. I’m surprised we haven’t seen more of that given the events of the past few years.” Of course, anyone with something to lose, be it freedom, spouse, children, parents, siblings, friends, a reputation they value, wouldn’t go to that extreme. He might daydream about it, but would never actually seriously consider it because he has a lot to lose and it just isn’t worth it. “But,” I thought again, “what about those few who get pushed to the point that they have none of that, or worse, had all of that and lost it. Those are the ones who can go nuts!”
Then, for whatever reason, maybe a hot mom in a bikini walked past or a fat guy almost fell, but my mind snapped back to the world and shut the door on those darkened corridors. “Why am I still thinking about that stuff from so long ago?” I thought. “I need to shake that shit… but… I did pose some interesting questions. A curious scenario. Book fodder? You bet!” That night I drafted a rough outline of what would eventually become In The Sanctity of Revenge, my debut novel.
Yesterday, after two years of work and many drafts, I published it. I don’t know if it is any good, but I do know that it isn’t going to get any better than it is right now. I’m not going to get rich off of it, but I worked too hard for too long to save it to a hard drive and forget about it. So I put it out there, for the world to read, and that is scary.
Up until yesterday, if it really sucked, it was a private failure. Today, if it sucks, it is a public one. In this day and age, a stranger from Brazil or Pakistan can read my book and send me a message telling me how horrible it was and that I owe them hours they can never get back. Of course, the opposite is true too. If it’s good, I can relish in the accolades from around the world. In any event, I had to put it out there to live beyond my computer. Good or bad, it is there. I’m proud of it. Its value beyond me is up to each individual reader.
With Thanksgiving this week, I am anticipating the questions: what’s it about? Can my kids read it? It’s not a bunch of liberal bullshit is it? or I hope it isn’t one of those Bill O’Reilly type books and Is this a true story? Is the main character you?
To those questions I can best respond, it is politically neutral while still having something to say. There is a little sex, a little violence, and a lot of swearing… just like my real life, but that’s where the real ends. The rest is pure fiction.
In The Sanctity of Revenge is available for just $2.99 now on Amazon:
Paperback available on Amazon:
Here is the link to the trailer: http://youtu.be/t97mbRhRnzg
Available World-wide on Amazon: