Songs For The Raven
I once knew a guy who’s father attempted to burn him alive in a kitchen oven when he was a child, simply because he told his father “no” in response to an unreasonable request. The kid managed to survive, but was continually subjected to further acts of violence from his dad until he finally ran away from home some years later. This, as well as other accounts of extreme child abuse, inspired me to write a short story called Steel-Toed Boots, in which I explore the relationship between a boy and his abusive father. But unlike the situation I mentioned above, Boots is a story of revenge. It deals with the possibility of what might happen if you push a child too far.
Sometimes they don’t run away.
I didn’t find a home for this story right away. Many publishers won’t even touch a story that involves violence to children of any kind. Fortunately, James Ward Kirk Fiction doesn’t shy away from this sort of thing. When I heard they were putting together a literary horror anthology titled Songs For The Raven, which examines “thoughtful perspectives of the painful truths that humanity tries to hide from itself,” I submitted my story immediately. I was thrilled to receive an acceptance letter the following day. To add to my excitement, I learned that Paula Ashe’s controversial short, Bereft, would also be included in the anthology. I was privileged to have read Bereft a few weeks earlier, and was completely blown away by the story. It grabbed me and shook me and left me breathless…
…and absolutely disturbed. Such a thing is a rarity, considering my decades-old horror fanaticism. I feel honored to have my work included alongside such brilliance.
And speaking of brilliance, Songs For The Raven also includes work by gifted authors such as Vincenzo Bilof, William Cook, Timothy Lee Frasier, Rich Orth, Mike Jansen, Chantal Noordeloos, David S. Pointer, James Ward Kirk himself, and others.
The book was released yesterday in paperback, and I understand it will be released in e-book format 5/1/13, one month from today. I hope everyone gets a chance to read it.