My debut short story collection, SEVEN SINS, is now out in the world. Paperback and ebook copies are available from the publisher, Concord ePress, right on over here.
I originally got the idea to put together a collection in 2013. It’s been a long journey since then, with many tweaks to the original concept made along the way. The common thread in these stories is that they are all about good / well-intentioned people doing bad things. What makes this happen? When and how do good intentions go wrong? How much outer influence is required, and how much comes directly from within? I could’ve written a lot more stories exploring this idea (in fact, I did… you should see the size of my personal slush pile…), but once the dust had cleared, these seven are the ones I ended up feeling most sure about.
That’s the premise. Now for the bragging points. My polished MS dutifully did its rounds, subjected to the scrutiny of a few big-name authors who graciously agreed to give it a look ahead of the publishing date. And here are some of those big-name authors, and what they had to say about this collection.
(And YES, I was beyond nervous that they would be reading my work with the option to blurb it. And NO, I still can’t quite believe how wonderful this feedback was.)
“This is a book that I want to read all over again, just to see how Karen Runge does it— how she uses her prose like a razor, her insight like a probe. How she cuts so deep, but without any anesthetic at all. How you can’t help but lean over, look inside with her. The story collection of the year, for me.”
– Stephen Graham Jones, author of Mongrels
“The desire and despair of her characters is intelligently and compassionately rendered, and you’re made to feel every drop of spilled blood. A stunning debut collection.”
– Paul Tremblay, author of A Head Full of Ghosts and Disappearance at Devil’s Rock
“In this finely crafted debut collection, moments of horror peel away in layers to reveal the tender small bones of human frailty. Karen Runge writes with an unsettling confidence that makes Seven Sins as compulsive as it is terrifying, creating stories so dark they give nightmares, writing so sharp it leaves scars.”
– Kate Horsley, author of The Monster’s Wife and The American Girl
“Beautiful, insidious, gut-wrenching. Like biting into windfallen fruit – so full of sunshine and sugar, but with each new sample the true taste of its own rot emerges.”
– Nikki Guerlain
And my personal favourite, from the genius Stona Fitch. My publisher, my editor, my mentor. Author of the astonishing SENSELESS, a dark lit novel that has influenced me, taught me, changed me.
I’ll stop here while I can still breathe.