The first 30,000 words of my latest novella, SKINZZ, are complete. I've got about 10,000 words or so to go. SKINZZ is about a period in Philadelphia between 1988 and 1989 when fights between punks and Nazi skinheads in Philly's hardcore scene had reached a dangerous fever pitch. There are a lot of autobiographical elements to this story but it is not a true story. I say this because some of the events are so close to reality that some might get confused. Let me repeat, this is a work of fiction. Any similarity between actual places, persons, or events is strictly coincidental. This is not about what happened to you or me or us or them. It is a fictionalized story inspired by actual events. All authors pull from their lives and the lives of others to some degree to craft their stories and characters. That's how we do it. But we lie. That's the other part of the craft. We exaggerate. We omit. We add. We change. That's how fiction is written.
Some readers, who were actually there, might get upset at some of the liberties I've taken with the story, compressed timelines, bands and venues that have been changed, fights that have been changed from one venue to another or exaggerated to make them more or less violent then they actually were.
Some of this was done in order to make the story fit into a novella-length work. If the fights were weeks apart in several different venues, as they actually occurred, it would have quadrupled the size of the book. That's the same reason why the bands have changed because I took events that took place at several concerts and compressed them into one. That left the decision of which bands to include because they couldn't have all been there. It also allowed me to up the violence by taking three or four violent events that took place at three or four different venues and putting them all into one night. In reality, it's probably less of an exaggeration then it may seem because in a large brawl there are injuries and things that take place that you never hear about because you were too busy worrying about your own. So, you may remember one serious injury when there were actually five or six.
So, if you were there, I don't want to hear "That happened at the Fishbone concert not The Pagan Babies concert!" or "That happened in June not December!" or "He was just hurt. He didn't die!" I know. I was there. But this is fiction. So, it can happen anyway I want it to. I can up the violence a little here and there. I can change events and timelines. I can make myself sexier. I can make the villains more villainous and the heroes more heroic. Because that is how stories get written. And this one, is a doozie!
SKINZZ follows two friends, Mack and Jason (aka Demon), who are part of the hardcore scene centered around South Street in Philly, as they attempt to single-handedly win the war against Nazi skinheads before Mack leaves for college in the Spring. One night, they accidentally murder a skinhead. This sets in motion a chain of events that leads to a climactic battle between a group of skinheads called The Uprise (strictly coincidental remember?) and Mack and his friends, including a couple of skinheads who have been on a murderous spree of their own. I really think you will like it whether you were moshing in a pit somewhere in the 1980s or have never even heard the word "mosh" until you read this. It is as violent and provocative as anything I've written. Coming soon from Thunderstorm Books. Well, as soon as I finish it, get it proofread, make the changes, send it to the publisher, sign all the signature sheets, send them back to the printer, and the printer prints and binds the whole thing. Yeah, coming as soon as all that happens.