Place built THE CONCRETE and the characters in it. The southeast side of Grand Rapids is the biggest villain in the book. It’s an area of drugs and violence, a place one must survive. While revising I was constantly looking for ways to use language to make it come alive …
Literary movements spark and evolve, ebb and flow together without ever warning the writer. By the time one knows what is new, all too often that new has already become old. Yet there is a sentiment emerging now, wondering aloud—though still quietly—
Personally, I blame the internet.
No peppermint candy filled stockings or pine scented candles to mask the smell of her mother’s Marlboro Lights. Boys crept into her window and fondled her pubis, twisted her tits.
In less than a second your entire head could explode and just about every thought or feeling you had would be rendered almost completely insignificant. Your skull’s circumference, just a broom sweep of ashes.
“It’s red and white, of course,’’ you answered. “Or maybe just red, and the white holds the red bits together,’’ you added, just in case.
The chains of Qalixy’s swing squeaked as she turned to you.
“No, no, the color of peppermint is actually purple,’’ she said.
Speak to someone. Give only your first name. Always give only your first name. Access your mental calendar. Try to count backwards to the relevant date.
I never thought I’d meet her. Nothing more than a voice, her story was a fluid myth.
Every time I close my eyes, I hear it again. What haunts me isn’t the chainsaw shriek of the slicer; it’s how quick it all was.