One of our beta readers confessed to me today that he couldn’t finish The Hangman’s Cross. It was too dark and pushed too many buttons for him. I apologized and promised that the next book I sent him to beta read would be a happier, lighter one. I think I can deliver on that.
I’m not surprised that this happened. When I send The Hangman’s Cross out to the beta group, it came with a big long list of trigger warnings – abuse, rape, child endangerment, torture and more. Hangman’s Cross and Burning Noose are probably the darkest things we’ll ever write. George RR Martin we are not, but there were times working on these books that I felt pretty uncomfortable or cried. I’m not sure if being one of the authors makes me more or less sensitive to the contents.
The Hangman’s Cross won’t be for everyone. Some readers won’t like the darkness and some won’t like our take on religion. But for us, these books were about saying something that was important and resonated deeply with us.
Some books are written for fun, some for money, some for art and some to explore. They’re all worth writing and they all have their audience that will love them. They’re all beautiful.