Plus some people prefer reading short stories. And some folks don't want to commit to a novel by an author whose work they're unfamiliar with; this is an opportunity to entice those readers into the fold, so to speak.
Anyway, the book is available only for the Kindle right now. And I'm pretty pumped: I just checked the stats, and Back Home Again is #14 on the Hot New Releases list for horror anthologies. Whoo hoo!
The paperback version should be ready by next weekend. I'll let y'all know when it's up.
This has been an interesting political year, and not just in the U.S. (No, I'm not going to talk about the candidates -- I've said over and over that I'm not going to make this a political blog, and it's still not happening. But we're in the middle of presidential campaign season here, and so it's on my mind.)
One of the interesting things about political persuasion -- about persuasion in general, really -- is to watch how much of it is really an emotional appeal gussied up as logical thought. Granted, some candidates make speeches that are full of nothing but dog-whistle appeals to their base of supporters -- but at least they're transparent about it. Others talk in a kind of code, aiming to sound sober and thoughtful, but underlying their rhetoric are stands on the issues that are just as much a play for certain voters as the dog-whistle candidates.
And yet, among the most disparaging things a critic can say about a candidate is that he or she doesn't have a viable platform, that someone or other has run the numbers on their proposals and they just don't check out. Never mind the fact that the details -- even if they're fully-formed legislative proposals -- will have to be hammered out among the White House and the two houses of Congress. No President in recent memory has walked into the White House on Day One with an agenda that subsequently became law with no changes whatsoever. Doesn't happen. At best, political platforms are suggestions -- a way to gauge how the wind would blow, if a particular slate of candidates were to be elected. Every last one of them is an emotional appeal.
So what purpose does a rational review of an emotional appeal have? Clearly it's important to get the details right, particularly when you're getting ready to implement a Big Idea. And it's often unhealthy to decide on a course of action by relying only on emotion, without thinking through the consequences.
But I would suggest that a total reliance on logic, cutting emotion out of the equation entirely, is just as unhealthy. Big Ideas don't come from rational thought processes; they come from aha! moments. They come from people who are fired up. Sober reflection can be a good thing, but it can also be a buzzkill. And "let's think this through" too often becomes an excuse for inaction. Fear of doing the wrong thing can lead to doing nothing. And as I hope we all know, doing nothing is also a choice.
So don't denigrate the people with the Big Ideas. They're the ones who will move us forward.
These moments of buzzkill-free blogginess were brought to you, as a public service, by Lynne Cantwell.