Two years ago today, I released the first volume of my morbid memoirs, This Morbid Life.
Its tagline is: What others have called an obsession with death is really a desperate romance with life.
I described it like this: Guided by curiosity, compassion, and a truly strange sense of humor, this particular morbid life is detailed through a death-positive collection of 45 confessional essays.
The book won a gold medal from the Independent Publisher Book Awards.
Reviews were good:
Behind the scenes:
Since this is the book’s birthday, I thought I’d revise an interview I did back in August 2021.
Tell us a little about your latest or upcoming release.
This Morbid Life is a death-positive memoir in the form of a collection of essays. The pieces were written for zines from Cyber-Psychos AOD to Chaotic Order to Morbid Curiosity magazine and for online sites like Gothic.Net, Jane, and Scoutie Girl.
The book starts with taking prom pictures in a cemetery in the rain and ends with falling in love with a sensory deprivation tank. There’s a lot in there.
Have you ever based your book or characters on actual events or people from your own life?
Everyone in this book is a real person! I’ve changed some of their names — maybe not enough of them. As Anne Lamott says, “You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should have behaved better.”
Is there a theme or message in your work that you would like readers to connect to?
I grew up really sheltered and spent a lot of time alone as a kid. It took me a long time to realize that it’s fun to get scared. One of the things that scared me most was the eventual deaths of my friends and family members, to say nothing of my own mortality. So I started to study death, to see if I could make it less frightening if I knew more about it. In the end, studying death has made me savor life even more.
What would your readers be surprised to learn about you?
I don’t dress all in black. My favorite colors are sky blue and grass green. I consider every day aboveground a good day.
If this book is part of a series…what is the next book? Any details you can share?
The series is called No Rest for the Morbid. This Morbid Life is the first in the series. The second one will be Jet Lag & Other Blessings. It will collect my morbid travel essays, from staying in the Hotel Esmerelda across from Notre Dame to wandering alone through Tokyo at night to attending a weekend music festival at an isolated anarchist commune to flying in a helicopter over a volcano. I can’t wait to share that book with the world.
There’s a whole lot more information about the book up here, including videos, reviews, and behind-the-scenes links.
Get a copy of your own!
Biblio.com paperback: https://www.biblio.com/book/morbid-life-loren-rhoads/d/1424501894
Smashwords ebook: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1108218
Or order a signed copy from my bookstore: https://lorenrhoads.com/product/this-morbid-life-autographed-1st-edition/
Wayne Fenlon made this great animation of Lynne Hansen’s glorious cover for me.