I can’t take it back. Writing this book was cathartic. Releasing it is terrifying. In my Introduction to Conducting Private Investigations I chided readers to be careful about what they put in writing. Investigators aren’t supposed to have opinions. Freedom City is proof that this investigator-monk has left the monastery.
My brashness is due in part to the fact that I’ve never been so sure about the success of something as I am about this book. By success I mean book sales. Without exception, it’s the best thing I’ve ever written. It’s honest, intensely personal, and timely. You don’t need to be a pollster to stick you finger in the air. The popular revulsion at our leaders is palpable.
I’m certain people will ask me what in the novel is “true.” Do I advocate violence or revolution? Am I a cuckold like Beach Sands? Was I a skinhead like Joseph Kaline? Do I make bombs in my spare time?
My answer: Freedom City is fiction.
All writers draw on their experiences and emotions when they create characters, but the scenarios and the characters’ choices within those scenarios are made up. There are some elements of the story that I personally relate to more than others, but to ask me what is factually true is to take my real life and attempt to apply it to a fantasy world.
However, once you publish something its interpretation is outside of your control. This frightens me. I hammered out Freedom City in less than three months. This was only possible because the story’s powerful emotions, welled up inside me for a lifetime, finally boiled over in the year since the 2016 election. While the book is satire, the feelings therein sprang straight from my damaged heart, and in that way I know I’m inviting denunciation and ridicule. I’m resigned to except the consequences.
I’d rather be an honest writer (even a failed one) than an investigator-monk who silently seethes at injustice and carries on as if everything is normal.
I hope you enjoy my book.