People ask why do you write pulp fiction? Why don’t you write something with real literary merit? Real quality. Something more like real life instead of all that violence and horror and all that fantastic stuff.

To that I say, So you think real life doesn’t have violence and horror and all kinds of fantastic stuff? Ever read a newspaper? Or watch cable news? Take a look at what’s going on all around you.

Beyond that, there’s and implication in what you’re saying that you think your own life resembles life the way its shown in a literary work, rather than a pulp story. “Of course, it is,” you say. “If I could choose someone to write my life story, I’d want someone like Fitzgerald, of Hemingway, or maybe even Shakespeare to write it. My life is worthy of no less. I’d want somebody who could write an uplifting bibliography that would serve as an inspiration to others. Not some cheap, penny a word hack.”

Well, I doubt that very much. I’d bet, if you were honest about it, you’d admit your life more resembles something out of a cheap, tawdry pulp novel than anything else. Because that’s how life is, for the most part. A few significant moments in a lifetime of banality and regret. As the man said, “A tale told by an idiot, signifying nothing.” But that’s alright. Keep up the pretenses. Keep on reading the “uplifters,” if it makes you feel good.

You may look down your nose at the pulpsters. But I’d argue that amidst the violence, horror and that fantastic stuff, you’ll find a kind of truth most writers don’t want to risk setting down in words. It’s a harrowing occupation.

Advertisements