Mike O’Driscoll’s Review: THE SKELETON MELODIES

The Skeleton Melodies (Hippocampus Press, 2020)

Major props to Mike O’Driscoll at Ginger Nuts of Horror for his immersive and insightful review of The Skeleton Melodies. “At his best, his stories show us ordinary people trying and, more often than not, failing, to make sense of a fucked-up world,” writes O’Driscoll. “No matter how grotesque or unreal the situations in which they find themselves, nor how egregious their mistakes, these are men and women we can empathise with.”

Slanting My Shadow Into Nico Bell’s Spotlight

Of late, I’ve been sobered by an exceeding sense of privilege:  an abundance of at-home technology which has allowed me, and my children, to remain productive over the course of this uncanny stretch — safety and security are not lost on me, residing in a neighborhood where my family doesn’t have to watch our backs, whether on a walk, or a two-mile jog.  I’m grateful, and should shut up about it.

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In my nascent slouches of attempting to become a published writer, I recall repeating the platitude that I was just happy to be part of the literary conversation.  I’m devoutly aware (whether due to my granted rhythms and windows of fiction manufacturing, or owing to the quality of my product) that there are coteric circles in which I’ll never be included.  I don’t mind, really — I enjoy the writing game too much, and have had too many brushes with luck thus far, to make a nebulous need a priority.

Yet, one of the principles which has not changed, and which I’ll continue to repeat:  that the complicated craft of both pursuing publication and attempting to carve-out a name for oneself in this field yields conversations with colleagues which would remain non-existent if for not the arduous nature of this process.

nicobellfiction

nicobellfiction.com

One of the conversations in which I was privileged to recently partake was with horror author Nico Bell, whose debut novel, Food Fright, was released by Unnerving this past March, 2020.  Back in February, I participated in her monthly Spotlight Author Interview.  

We had a brief exchange back in February, and I felt as though I’d made another kindred acquaintance in this creatively crowded field — appreciative for establishing another connection in this complicated network.

Again:  I’m grateful.  I’ll shut up about it.