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  • Writer's pictureArch Gibson

What if . . .?

Someone asked the other day why I didn't go ahead and demonize my Black Galaxie 500, like Stephen King's Christine or From a Buick 8. Both were marvelous ventures into demonizing things mechanical with supernatural capabiities. Simple answer. I'm more into building demons into human characters rather than mechanical monsters.

So, building a horror novel is not what I am about. It's already been done by one of America's literary masters. I am about contributing to the growing genre of neo Westerns; complicated plot lines, set in the modern West as complex characters, good and bad, face their own foibles amid modern backdrops of domestic terrorism, human trafficking, drugs, and the search for our true ancestors. And that can get as prickly as the saguaro cactus growing in our back yard.

Sometimes, my antagonists are fully round and sometimes the self-serving victims of social injustice as much as bad values and deep grudges. My protagonists are unlike classic flat or semi-round Western heroes.

They make poor decisions with good intentions. They are sometimes unredeemable killers as David Webb Peoples' reformed outlaw William Munny in Unforgiven. A story, by the way, not just about justice for the cowpokes who cut up a whore's face, but a sheriff, whose inhumane treatment of innocents is as unforgivable as Munny's previous crimes. It's a mixed up world out there and the new West is no exception. True, in Black Galaxie 500, the solution of the mystery is. . . No, why ruin it for you?

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