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Being Commonplace, Doesn’t Mean It’s Not Insidious

Henry Corrigan Author Interview

A Man in Pieces follows a desperate father-to-be as he battles his boss for a job that leads one of them to contemplate committing murder. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

A Man in Pieces started with my nightmares. I was sweating over bills, (in fact, I still am) dealing with underhanded bosses and backstabbing coworkers and just dreading each day that I reported to work. I was looking for a way to sleep better at night, so I started writing down everything that kept me up at night. The idea was that if I could get a look at the worst the world had to offer, then it would help me get a better handle on it. What I realized as I was writing it is that lots of people sweat over bills and plenty of others hate their jobs. But just because something is commonplace, doesn’t mean it’s not insidious.

Mike is plagued with bad options all around and has to find a way to make things work. What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?

I based Mike very much on myself, but subtracted some of the things that have kept me alive. I made him more stoic than I am, I had him talk less, because I wanted to see what would happen if I didn’t turn away from my own worst impulses. For Mike, all of those bad options were the same ones that many people face. Bad jobs we can’t live without, mounting pressures, no guarantees that anything will work. It’s frightening stuff and it wasn’t until I was staring at it that I knew what I was writing was a horror story. It might not be what people traditionally think of as horror, there are no monsters or slashers or demons involved, but there are the kinds of fears that keep too many of us up at night.

What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?

I absolutely wanted to explore toxic masculinity because I’ve been living with it all my life. The sort of learned helplessness where I’m never supposed to cry or admit weakness. Where I keep going, even when I’m breaking down by inches. I also wanted to touch on how toxic masculinity and a person’s sexuality can get twisted up like roots that end up strangling each other. I wanted to take all of this and throw it in a blender with systemic abuse and what came out was a reflection of the world around us. An American Dream which left most people struggling and the rest of us driving each other mad.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

I actually have a couple of (wildly different) books that I’m working on. One is a picture book about a little monster who lives in a girl’s tummy and helps her eat healthy. That one I just finished revising and it’s currently with the editor. As to when it will be available, that’s up in the air at the moment. I’m also revising the first book in a planned sci-fi series and am hoping to get that to beta readers some time in the near future. I’ve also also got a sword and sorcery short story that I’m thinking about self-publishing later this year and a horror novella I’ll be working on with a mentor in 2023. (I got accepted into the Horror Writers Association Mentor Program, which I’m hoping will be a blast, so please wish me luck.) Beyond that, I’ve got a number of short stories in a number of genres that I’ve already self-published, with several more planned in the coming year, so keep eye on Twitter or Facebook where I’ll be posting every new announcement 🙂 Thank you so much for having me here, this opportunity has meant the world to me.

Author Links: GoodReads | Twitter | Facebook | Website

Driven by bad choices and worse options, a desperate father-to-be must battle his abusive boss for the last slot at a dead-end job, but the fight may lead one of them to murder.
Mike Harper would like nothing more than to burn his dead-end job to the ground. But with a wife on bed rest and a son on the way, discovering that the company is downsizing couldn’t come at a worse time. Now, struggling to stay afloat, Mike is forced to fight for the last remaining spot to secure his family’s future. It’s too bad that Tom, his obnoxious boss, is in the same boat.
Tom Downes is a man with few friends and even fewer prospects, but the aging veteran has never gone down without a fight. Now, with his health failing and his marriage falling apart, Tom is willing to do whatever it takes to keep his job.
With a blinding snowstorm closing in, these two desperate men will battle each other on a long and twisted road fraught with heartbreaking losses – and murder.
For when it comes to staying afloat, the American Dream can break anyone…

A Man in Pieces

For most, life has never been a bed of roses; for Mike, it has been no different. Not only does he have to work for clients he utterly despises and condones, but he also has a bitter superior with an identity crisis. He is neck-deep in debt and does not have hope for a silver lining to get out anytime soon. Now his wife is heavily pregnant, he has to shoulder the responsibility of providing for all their needs. All with a smile on his face. But the pressure keeps building, and Mike is this close to caving in. What happens when the last straw finally meets the camel’s back, will it break Mike, or is there light at the end of the tunnel? And most importantly, what could the last straw be?

A Man In Pieces by Henry Corrigan is a tragic story about two men who are barely holding it together. Tom believes life sucks. A past he successfully suppressed is slowly resurfacing, and yet, he’s not ready to accept it. To feel in control of something since he failed with his personal life, he lashes out at anyone and everyone, including his subordinate, Mike, who’s equally having a hard time living life too. Unlike Tom, Mike is doing a great job masking his fears, concerns, and distress. But his pregnant wife, Claire, knows there is more behind his tired smile. Every day he comes home, she tries her hardest to crack him and fix him before it’s too late. But Claire is all Mike has, and the last thing he wants is to burden her with his problems. Eventually, he succumbs to Claire and pours out some of his worries. From then on, things seemed to be looking up for Mike and Claire. Little did they know that something in Claire’s past was brewing…

At first, A Man In Pieces can be confusing as readers are given a lot of information in the beginning, building out the main characters’ backstories. There is little action in the opening chapters, but building the story of the two men and their lives is interesting. Henry Corrigan fleshes out this novel in detail, turning it into a story that will make readers experience feelings of contempt, pity, happiness, hope, distraught, and love. Readers who fancy a short, tragic book with extremely descriptive scenes will find this book fascinating. Also, I recommend this book to mature readers.

Pages: 100 | ASIN : B0B1VXBZT3

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