Friday, October 14, 2011

Why Hills of Fire?

When I began doing book signings with Woodland Press, I started to notice a particular kind of customer. They were men, usually 40 to 70. Sometimes, they were veterans; wearing caps with names of battleships. Sometimes, they had long gray ponytails and mud-stained boots. 

They all had calloused hands.

After looking over our table of books, they’d discuss civil war battles, or local lore concerning long dead gunslingers, but they never bought anything. These customers loved to read, they loved Appalachia, but they weren’t into horror stories. 

After a while, I wondered why we didn’t have a book for them; something with characters they could relate to, like the two-fisted Charles Bronson and Lee Marvin movies my Grandfather used to show on his Betamax video player.   
In the winter of 2010, with the encouragement of Brian Hatcher and Michael Knost, I pitched the idea of an “Appalachian pulp anthology” to Keith Davis at Woodland Press. My idea was simple; a book that anyone from western to noir fans could enjoy, where Appalachians are the heroes instead of the usual “inbred cannibal hillbilly” stereotype.   

Keith graciously agreed.

That’s how “Hills of Fire: Bare-Knuckle Yarns of Appalachia” was born.

Over the coming weeks, I hope to continue this blog: giving updates on production, inspiring contributing writers with Appalachian culture, and much more. 

I hope y’all will come along.
Frank Larnerd – Editor 


Next Friday: Why Pulp?

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