It’s less than two weeks now until Never Dead releases. I’m nervous and excited for the this release which has become par for the course for me by now. Excited because I love the story and can’t wait for readers to experience it, nervous because you never know how other people are going to react to a book. Those first few reviews once a book is out usually help me breathe a little easier.
I always used to like to read the authors note at the end of books explaining how the author of the book got the idea of the story. I did something like that for the stories in my collection Zoo: Eight Tales of Animal Horror a few months ago on my author Facebook page and I thought it might be interesting to talk about the origins of Never Dead here. I won’t give anything away so if you’re looking forward to reading it, it’s safe to read this post first.
The idea for Never Dead actually came from what was supposed to be a short story. The story was going to be about two guys in a cemetery in the middle of a thunderstorm digging up a grave. Part of this story is the first chapter of Never Dead. After writing most of the short story (about 7000 words) I realized that there was more to these characters than just this short story. There was also another character slamming at the door and demanding to be involved in the grave robbing story. I slept on it and then next day after a long workout I had the basic idea for what would become Never Dead. The character that was asking to be let out was the reporter Michael Jacobs.
Once I had the major plot points straight in my head and I knew where I was heading, I started writing. It took about 4-5 months to finish and when it was done, it was the second longest thing I’d ever written at 115,000 words. (The longest is a military Sci-fi novel called Black Tiger which clocked in at 120,000 words and would need a ton of work before seeing the light of day.)
After finishing the first draft of never Dead I set it aside for a while and worked on other things. When I got back to it I started editing. I ended up knocking about 10,000 words off and then started submitting it. Eventually it got picked up by Wicked House and now it’s a few weeks from release. Some early readers have already read it and the feedback has been positive so far.
I didn’t set out to have a specific theme when I wrote Never Dead, but often the themes show up without the author even realizing it. The common thread running through this book is family. Its the constant throughout the book at is the motivating factor for so many of the characters decisions. I usually dedicate my books to my wife and/or kids because they are have played such a huge role in my writing and the publishing journey that’s I’m on. Never Dead is dedicated to my family but in a more broad sense. Family was a big part of my life growing up and I was my parents and brother but also to my grandparents, aunts, uncles, and in-laws. All of those relationships are in this book in one way or another which is why I felt I needed to dedicate Never Dead to all of those people. It’s only fitting (though not planned) that release day—December 8th—is my grandfathers birthday.
I’ve read a few books since my last post and both were tremendously entertaining. The first was King’s Hill by Josh Hanson about a serial killer in who is taking a prison writing class and is using the assignments to write his final confession. This one was fun and kept me guessing the entire time. The second is The Night Parade by Ronald Malfi which I actually stopped reading with about 100 pages to go in order to write this post. This one was published back in 2015 but is about a new never before seen virus that because a pandemic. The similarities to Covid during the early days of the virus in the book are eerily similar. Though it’s a horror book so things go off in a vastly different direction. I highly recommend both books.
I haven’t seen many movies and I’ve been watching a lot of football even though the Patriots aren’t playing very well. And also in good amount of wrestling this week. AEW Dynamite was a pretty good show and Survivor Series was a good show also. I will never not be entertained by WarGames matches and the two returns at the end by Orton and Punk were well done. I can’t wait to see where everything goes from here.
Thanks all for today. Until next week…