Sunday, January 29, 2012

A World with no Good Guys

What do you think that would be like? More to the point, what does that question mean to you? Nothing? Just another day at the office? Armageddon? What?
Because, that's exactly the world we live in. We like to pretend we're all good guys (by now you know I don't mean 'guys' in a gender sense). In some ways, we are, but we're also all bad guys. Note that I've not used the term evil in this context. This is not necessarily a case of Good and Evil, but merely of good and bad.
Take my protagonist, Adam Watson, from my newest release, The Evil Within. He is essentially a good guy who comes home to recover from some very bad experiences on the battlefield. All he wants is to go hunting in the little Eden he'd grown up in, and to be left alone.
With a reputation as a local good guy, he steps up to the plate when some clearly bad guys threaten a young woman in his presence. Little does he know they're there because of something a member of his family has done, and they're not the type to back off. One thing leads to another until all hell breaks loose. Literally.
Adam is back in a shooting war, right on his home town's main street. On the path from uncomfortable to unlivable, his eyes are opened to the reality that nobody he knows is free of the evil he'd tried so hard to avoid. When the smoke clears, he's left with a remnant of his family, an old girlfriend, and a lot of cleaning up to be done.
The Evil Within, offered by MuseItUpPublishing, is available as an eBook download at: and will soon be available for Kindle readers at or for Nook readers at Barnes and
Search for Pat Dale, author at either site. caution: You are entering a no-win zone, rife with gritty, vulgar, violent scenes not for the faint of heart. Adult content, with a message you're not likely to forget.

Read THE EVIL WITHIN if you dare.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

A Writer's Universe: Inside or Outside

I've been relegated to observer status of late. A serious leg injury has necessitated my inactivity, so I've had lots of time to think. That's a dangerous thing for a writer. An idle mind is the devil's workshop, my grandfather once told me. Or was it, an idol mind? Hmm.
Many an author these days creates amazing outer worlds, with non-human characters, places, intrigue, etc. Fascinating for readers, especially those inclined to science fiction/fantasy. I even took one fanciful line and twisted it into an erotic fantasy, Blue Streaks. In the end, however, I couldn't help doing an unconventional twist into an all too true, down to earth, climax.
On the other hand, I find that the world which teases and tempts me the most is the one on the inside. How a character thinks and feels is more important than the derring do's and heaving ho's of life's little adventures. For the most part, my readers will find flawed heroes who demonstrate redeemable characteristics, more seriously flawed villains with little to redeem them, and strong women who follow or lead their heroes through thick and thin. No weak women for me, for I've never found that they exist. Strong women gone wrong, now that's a different tune, one I'll pipe all day and all night.
All of which leads me to the reason for this post. Fanfare, if you please, maestro! The Evil Within will be released on Friday, January 27, 2012. In Evil, you'll find a flawed hero, Adam Watson, who demonstrates a tendency all too many men will find uncomfortably familiar. He thinks of himself as a good guy.
Well, he is a good guy. Problem is, he's also human, which means he's got some inside plumbing in need of a good cleaning. Not physical plumbing, but spiritual. Before this saga is done, Adam learns more about his family, his community, and himself than is comfortable. Sorry, Adam, that's the way it goes in my book.
We also have not one but a plethora (there's that word again) of strong women, all with character flaws, but with the feminine wherewithal to hold life's little drama together when the seams pop. There is Sarah Reynolds, Adam's married sister, whose application for sainthood is on hold. Kelly Samples, a girl older than her years by a coon's age, and Amanda Moore, Adam's high school sweetheart, who turns out to be full of heart, but not so sweet.
Have I got a villain for you to hate? In spades, I do, and his name is Ramos. He does not deserve a last name and doesn't get one. What he does get in the end is something for you to wonder about. Oh, and the end is anything but happy for all concerned. Hint: keep a box of hankies handy when you read the last portion of this one.
Is this some kind of irreverent code, I'm blathering here? Could be, but you won't know if you don't read the book. Caution: it is not for the faint of heart, or those with tender feelings easily hurt. This is an adult novel in the manner of a Steinbeck, Hemingway, Lewis, or, dare I say, a Twain. In my view, we can still learn a thing or two from the classic writers of old.
What's inside your favorite character? Your favorite villain? Your own head? Look out. I may be lurking nearby, hoping for a little insight into what makes you tick.
Fair warning!
Pat Dale