Down & Out Books August Promotion


In a continuing series of features from our authors, Ryan Sayles tells the story behind his story in UNLOADED: Crime Writers Writing Without Guns.

Everybody wants to stand out. That’s why we have Mohawk haircuts, tattoos, people trying to marry their German shepherds and torture porn movies. So when Eric Beetner invited me into the UNLOADED anthology Down & Out Books recently published, I wanted to stand out. After the list of contributors he put together, it was clear I was going to have to do something to be noticed because my “talents” weren’t going to cut it against them. Except Joe Clifford. I mop the floor with that guy.

So I figured, why not write something that takes a sharp left turn from where everybody else was going to go? Beetner wanted crime, just without guns. I could do that. We all could do that. Right? So I set my brain upon the task, letting the crime without guns idea sink in.

And then it hit me: two bumbling stoners seeking revenge for a wrong they suffered, and their weapon? A dildo. And not just any dildo, but a dildo that could spit fire. It’d be hilarious. It’d be crime-y, but most importantly it’d be not-gun-y. (Now that I look back on it, there was an old lady with a shotgun standing on her porch. Oops.) Hijinks ensue, and then in typical Sayles fashion, everyone dies in the end. No one else was going to touch that. No one. (Now that I look back on it more, it might as well have been a retelling of just about any average Saturday night for me.)

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