Delilah's father is the greatest man she's ever known. So when he commits suicide she's thrown into a tailspin. She can't eat. She can't sleep. Her bubbly personality becomes bitter and mean. All she wants is to be left alone. The thought of her father's suicide consumes her. It eats away at her. On top of it all, his life insurance policy won't pay out for a suicide so there is no money to pay their mortgage.
When the foreclosure notices flood in it sets her into action to prove what she's known all along: that his death was a murder.
Long before my successful Kickstarters for Katrina Hates the Dead and Ichabod Jones: Monster Hunter, there was My Father Didn't Kill Himself. Well, back then it was I'm Going to Kill Myself, and it was about a girl named Delilah who decided to try as many ways as possible to kill herself.
Over time the idea morphed and changed, IGTKM became MFDKH, and it went from a drama to a mystery.
Delilah never changed though. She never left my thoughts. She taunted me, spoke through me, and kicked around my head for over a decade while I tried to get her into a movie.
Finally, when I started Wannabe Press in 2014, I saw my opening to get her out into the world, this weird little girl who bounced through my head for nearly a decade.
Like Ichabod and Katrina, My Father Didn't Kill Himself is about that murky gray area between right and wrong, and the perceptions that haunt our memory and shift our perspectives.
What I love about the book is that there are so many levels to it. On the very top level there is the mystery, of course.
But right below the surface is a story of how people get over grief. And not just how Delilah gets over her grief of losing the person she idolizes most in the world. Also about how a wife gets over the grief of her husband, a husband that was supposed to provide for her, but instead left her alone and destitute.
Mixed with that is the loss felt by Alex, Delilah's best friend, in losing her best friend to the anguish of grief, watching her slip away and pull back from the world, feeling helpless.
There are so many different flavors of grief one might think this book was wholly depressing, but that's not how I roll. I love taking something that is very morbid, and infusing humor into it. I believe that there's nothing in the world more important that seeing the light in even the darkest situation.
Think John Green meets Kurt Vonnegut and you will get a good sense of the tone I'm trying to achieve.
What I did want to do is make sure there are real, three dimensional character and that everything isn't wrapped up in a nice bow. I want to make you think as an audience, and not just about the mystery.
A lot of My Father Didn't Kill Himself is about telling the same event from multiple points of view. You will hear Delilah tell an event, then immediately after you will hear Alex tell the same thing, but have a different opinion. It feels like a complete different scenario, because their perspectives are so different.
That's where I like to live, in that murky gray area between good and bad. Where there is no right or wrong answer. Where good people do bad things and bad people do good things.
Because that's life. That's real life. You don't always get everything wrapped up in a bow. You don't always have the right answer to the story. You don't always get the warm fuzzies. But that doesn't mean the experience is bad. In fact, the most complex experiences often lead to the most growth.
That's what I aimed for in this book. I want you to see how grief tears a family apart, and wonder if it can ever bring them back together. There is a lot of humor in the pages of this book, but it's meant to stir something deeper.
More than anything, this book is a reflection of me. I pour my heart and soul into all of my books. I'm so happy that you've considered joining me on this journey. I do my best every day to be sure you get the more amazing product possible.
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