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Reading ‘A Heart Shaped Box’ by Joe Hill


Greetings and salutations loyal reader, (who ever you are)

After getting the disappointing news last week that I am not in fact the key note Speaker at this years Zom B Con.  I learned that our old friend Scott Kenemore has in fact been invited to appear scottkenemore.wordpress.com So chalk one up for the good guys.  This year, Zom B Con is being held in Seattle Washington October 21-23.  Click here for more info. http://www.zombcon.com/.  Locally the swamp is now completely surrounded by the undead army.  The Swamp Thing is keeping them at bay and herself well fed, in the bargain.  That’s a win win for the residents.  I for one am sleeping better then ever with the warm ooze squirting between my toes and the Swamp Thing purring like an overfed cat, sleeping on cushions in the sun.  This week’s topic is reading.  So let’s get on with it.

Two weeks ago I stumbled onto a novel Titled ‘Heart Shaped Box’ by Joe Hill.  I was blown away by Mr. Hill’s insight into Judas Coyne an aging metal band front man who lives comfortably on the royalties from his recording career.  Judas collects bizarre objects that keep up his on stage macabre persona.  I was so impressed by Mr. Hill’s portrayal of this character that I was sure he, in fact, was a retired musician.  Flipping to the bio page after finishing the book breathlessly I read that he is a two time Bram Stroker award winner and has a collection of short stories published titled ‘20th Century Ghosts’.  I dropped ‘Heart Shaped Box’ and rushed out to my local bookseller and picked it up this next gem.  I read story after story and couldn’t believe my good fortune, having stumbled onto this wonderful writer of stories that scared the lint right out of my bellybutton.  Again and again he led me down an overgrown winding path that hadn’t been traversed for too long.   This time I took note of his bio photo, he looks too young to be a former anything, but of course bio photos are often, shall we say, not the latest image available so I didn’t put too much stock in it.  I wanted more Joe Hill.  Had to have more.  This time, to my trusty computer, where I can search for anything, anywhere, anytime.  That in its self is a little scary don’t you think.  Wah-lah, another novel is available and some comic books too.

I don’t usually give a (fill in your own explitive) about the people behind the stuff I like.  If I like an artist’s music I don’t care who they vote for or who they date.  The same is true with authors and pretty much everything else.   With that said, and no new Joe Hill book in my slimy little hands yet (Okay, I know this sounds a little stalker like so bare with me.)  I started reading about Mr. Hill.  I was stopped in my tracks when I read, he is the son of …Wait for it, (drum roll) none other than Stephen and Tabitha King.  Stevo is his dad, my all time favorite writer and very scary dude, his own self.  Mr. King you’ve passed on the baton beautifully. Thank you.  Joe, I’m making room on my bookshelves so get busy.

Next week we’ll discuss self-editing and what you should have packed if you find yourself over-shambled by shuffling hordes of brain eating corpses.    Closing today with these words of wisdom from. — Joe Hill (20th Century Ghosts)

“I didn’t know the inner me was hungry,” I said to Art.

“That’s because it already starved to death. ”

Write On,


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