I understand that novels about topics such as vampires, mythological worlds, ends-of-the world, and fake romances are “sellable” and neither of these might be lucrative. However, I hope that these pieces of fiction can actually make a difference to someone who can relate to similar circumstances. Mental illness is often taboo, but I hope these fictional stories can turn people onto researching some of the realities that loved ones face when caring for the mentally ill.

“Chats with a Charlatan” – Published by Eckhartz Press
This is where I am with this novel project, almost four years after I began. After all the drafts, critiques, opinions, frustrations and hopes, I have finished tweaking it; this is not because it is perfect, but rather because I gave it all I had. The thing is fucking finished; it’s where I want it, where it needs to be for people who don’t know me to read it. Not convinced? Want to know something else about this book? Ask me! I seriously don’t bite (that hard)!

Genre: Satire / Thriller / Dark Comedy / Literary

Synopsis: Kevin Davis is a practicing psychiatrist, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he should be a doctor. He is just as his patients, thanks to his broken marriage, unethical career and harmful habits.

Reason for title: Doctors who don’t know what they’re talking about are said to be ‘quacks.’ This story’s antagonist prefers the term ‘charlatan.’

Word count: ~72,000 words
“Lucky” – yet to be published; yet to be finished for that matter
(Please e-mail me if you would like to read the first chapter, or any excerpt, of this piece. I would have a download of it here, but it’s the internet and it’s too risky and vulnerable to be out there where anyone can get it and take it. I’m a nice guy, though. So, just get in contact with me. Ask and you shall receive.)

This is the unfinished novel. The song lyrics “I’m sick of sitting around here trying to write this book” by Bruce Springsteen stick in my mind. The most common advice writers receive is to “write what you know.” If that’s the case, I’ve been writing this book in my mind nearly all my life. And this is all I have to show for it: An unpublished manuscript in its early, developmental stages.

Like my other novel, this one deals with the effects of mental illness on the non-mentally ill. This one draws off a lot of personal conflicts and situations experienced, but it is still fictional. The story is about a family, written from three different voices: a mentally ill man, his wife, and their son.

Genre: Literary

Synopsis: In suburban Chicago, a family of three battles the hurdles that mental illness imposes on the father. Each family member dreams of a better future, while attempting to choose which memories to kill and which to savor. Through typical and familial struggles, amplified by poverty and poor health, the only son, strong mother and sick father, travel through their lives, while pursuing society’s acceptance and understanding.

Word count: ~80,000 words

Reason for title: Despite their struggles, the family believes they are lucky in ways that most families are not. Their perspective differs from the spotlight cast on them from their community and even their own family.