In dark inner city basements. In sinkholes and caves and shallow graves. In ditches, riverbends, lakes, and streams. In fifty-five-gallon drums filled with concrete. In ashes.
All over the world, perhaps not far from where you sit reading, bones lie undiscovered.
Searches have long been called off, the grieving mostly—if not completely—forgotten. Mothers, fathers, wives, husbands, children, grandparents, friends, coworkers, lovers, and purported enemies who now regret their resentments—they learn to swallow their grief when it rises in their throats, begging to burst forth as a plea for renewed interest in solving a case gone cold, and landing all too often on deaf ears.
I primarily write in the realm of crime, horror, and psychological thriller, with the ultimate goal of conveying true emotion through the darkest of human experience, but turning death into entertainment feels gratuitous at times. Exploitative. Why should such topics be allowed to join the otherwise happy-go-lucky boat parade of the mainstream?
The answer is simple. When death is popular—when Netflix and CNN and people on Twitter and Facebook pay attention to it—new investigations spring forth, reward funding increases, and, if nothing else, the families of murder victims might get a sense that someone gives a shit.
Because we do give a shit. All of us, give or take a sociopath. Our fear of death precludes us from true apathy. If you think you’re not afraid to die, you’re just in one particular stage of grief.
My goal as a writer is to trick you into embracing your fear, to make you feel what a murder victim’s sister, brother, mother, or father feels, to make you gaze into the cold, dead eyes of a killer so perhaps you’ll know that look when you see it.
If you’re interested, I wrote a short story inspired by a real police interrogation of a murder suspect. It’s called “Something Missing”, a title that sounds like an admonishment of our society but also relates to the story’s plot. I hope you’ll crack it open. I hope it feels real and authentic.
And I hope it leaves you incredibly disturbed.
Thanks for your time. This post will be republished on my own blog in a couple days. Come visit me there if you’d like.
In the meantime, cling tight to your loved ones.