Meet Humour/Horror Author A.B. FUNKHAUSER

OFFICIAL SCOOTER COVER

Aging managing director Charlie Forsythe begins his work day with a phone call to Jocasta Binns, the unacknowledged illegitimate daughter of Weibigand Funeral Home founder Karl Heinz Sr. Alma Wurtz, a scooter bound sextenarian, community activist, and neighborhood pain in the ass is emptying her urine into the flower beds, killing the petunias. Jocasta cuts him off, reminding him that a staff meeting has been called. Charlie, silenced, is taken aback: he has had no prior input into the meeting and that, on its own, makes it sinister.

The second novel in the UNAPOLOGETIC LIVES series, SCOOTER NATION takes place two years after HEUER LOST AND FOUND. This time, funeral directors Scooter Creighton and Carla Moretto Salinger Blue take centre stage as they battle conflicting values, draconian city by-laws, a mendacious neighborhood gang bent on havoc, and a self-absorbed fitness guru whose presence shines an unwanted light on their quiet Michigan neighborhood.

Geo Buy Link: http://myBook.to/ScooterNation

Book Trailer: https://youtu.be/oqmrW_t92jc

Excerpt: 

1967

 The old humpback with the cloudy eye and Orwellian proletarian attitude pushed past the young embalmer with a curt “Entschuldigen Sie bitte!—Excuse me!” That Charles E. Forsythe, bespectacled and too tall for his own good, didn’t speak a word of German was incidental. The man grunting at him, or, more accurately, through him was Weibigand senior embalmer Heino Schade, who’d been gossiped about often enough at Charlie’s previous place of employ: “Weibigand’s,” the hairdresser had winked knowingly, “is like a Stalag. God only knows where the lampshades come from.”

 Whether she was referring to Schade specifically or the Weibigand’s generally didn’t matter. What he gleaned from the talk and what he took with him when he left to go work for them was that he was not expected to understand, only to follow orders.

Schade, muttering over a cosmetic pot that wouldn’t open, suddenly tossed it; the airborne projectile missing Charlie’s black curls by inches. Jumping out of the way, he wondered what to do next.

Newly arrived from Seltenheit and Sons, his new master’s most capricious competitor, expectations that he perform beyond the norm were high. Trading tit for tat, his old boss Hartmut Fläche had fought and lost battles with Karl Heinz Senior since 1937, and wasn’t about to abandon the bad feeling, even as he approached his ninetieth year. That his star apprentice had left under a tenacious cloud to go work for the enemy would no doubt hasten old Harty’s resolve to plot every last Weibigand into the ground before he got there first.[1]

It was incumbent upon Charlie, therefore, to dish some dirt hopefully juicy enough to shutter Seltenheit and Son’s for good.

Ducking under the low rise water pipes that bisected Weibigand’s ceiling in the lower service hall, Charlie shuddered with the thought of retributive action, if only because old men were scary and he was still young. At twenty, he had finished his requisite course requirements, albeit at an advanced age. A lot of the guys were finishing at seventeen, only to be packed off to Vietnam. But Charlie had been delayed by way of the family pig farm which in many ways, could save his hide in a pinch. As the eldest male in a houseful of women, running the farm made him essential if the Draft ever became an issue. It hadn’t so far—he was too old, the 1950 and up birthdates pulled by lot would never include his. Yet he was haunted by the prospect of a violent end.

His mother—a gentle soul who knew the Old Testament chapter and verse—never missed an opportunity to discourage his dreams for a life in the city. This only aggravated matters. He was different, and he knew it. For that reason, he had to leave.

“You’ll wind up in hell if you try,” she said fondly, every time he negotiated the subject. In the end, it was a kick in the ass from the toothless old neighbor that sent him running far and fast off the front porch: “Yer not like the others, are ya sweetie?”

“Don’t expect an easy time from the Missus,” Heino Schade said offhandedly from his vantage over a pasty deceased.

“Mrs. Weibigand?” Charlie asked, noting that the old man used Madame Dubarry commercial cosmetic in place of the heavy pancake Seltenheit’s favored.

“You assisted her out of a particularly difficult situation. She will expect more as a show of your constant devotion.” He knocked his glass eye back into place with a long spring forceps.

Charlie understood. He hadn’t expected a call from the Lodge that infamous night, but then, it wasn’t every day that a good friend of the Potentate was found dead in a hotel room under a hooker.

“In flagrante delicto,” Schade continued ominously in what appeared to be Latin.

“Indeed,” Charlie said, faking a working knowledge of the dead language; the unfamiliar term, he guessed, having more to do with what Karl Heinz Weibigand was doing with a woman in a seedy hotel room, than his desire to ask Schade how he made his dead look so dewy.

Praise for A.B. Funkhauser: 

“…writes with a take-no-prisoners style of prose.”

  • Steve Cronin, AMERICAN FUNERAL DIRECTOR MAGAZINE

 “Funkhauser digs down deep into each character and shatters the lines of morality, showing us the darkness and light within all of them…”

  • Angela D’Onofrio, Author FROM THE DESK OF BUSTER HEYWOOD

 “Scooter Nation is different from anything you’ve ever read. It’s also well worth the price of admission into A.B.’s mind.”

  • Dorothea Helms, “The Writing Fairy,”Award-winning International Writer

 

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For today’s blog, we welcome A.B. Funkhauser to the page. Let’s get started.

  1. What genre do you write or do you write more than one?

Thanks for having me aboard, Maighread. Let me begin by saying that I can’t be sure what genre I’m writing until the first fifty pages are down. At that point, voice and character start to tickle and I get a pretty good idea about the over all tone. I like ensembles with plenty of scene changes and overlap. Keeps me interested and my characters also! If I don’t give them plenty to do, they squawk; if I give them too much, someone usually dies…badly. You could say that I started out with contemporary gonzo fiction and have carried it into more mysterious territory. I’m currently working on a seditious “whodunit” from the POV of a cat.

  1. Why did you choose this genre?

I love the unexpected. When it appears, I tend to jump in “boots first”. My characters are the same.

  1. What is your latest book?

I’ve released two novels in eleven months, so for the third, I wanted to take my time and really develop the characters and the community they play around in.  SHELL GAME, like SCOOTER NATION, is about a group of people linked by community, but this time the action is driven by the comings and goings of a tabby cat with a recessive gene. Carlos the Wunder cat is unique. Not only is he cunning and wise, but he is also driven by a private agenda that will ultimately blow a community apart before uniting its survivors. It is my most ambitious work to date in that it involves four parallel plot lines that tie and untie at critical points to expose the rot at the heart.

  1. When will it release/did it release?

I’m hoping to have SHELL GAME out by the spring of 2017, but who knows? It’s a longer piece so it requires more prep time. And I’m also focusing on the 2016 release SCOOTER NATION, which was just recently added as a Walmart book for sale at Walmart.com. Very exciting! Readers in the Toronto area can find me at Toronto’s Word on the Street at Harbour Front September 25th, where I’ll be talking books at the Sister’s in Crime — Toronto Chapter booth. Come out and see me!

  1. Who is your target audience?

My characters are multinational, multigenerational and multilingual with a morality meter that is elastic at best, so I think readers who court the unexpected and can laugh out loud as they brazen through each character contretemps have a pretty good chance of loving what I put out. The point of gonzo is to shine a light on things that may or may not matter and allow the reader to decide. Paired with humor, it’s the best way to get a point across without being heavy handed.

  1. What do you hope they learn from/like about your work?

That accessibility is everything and nothing — NOTHING — is ever as it seems.

  1. Tell us a bit about yourself?

I’m a licensed funeral director/embalmer living in the province of Ontario, Canada. Though my heart belongs to my home, I have a strong affinity for Sarasota, Florida and the Gulf Beaches where I spend as much time as I can, schedules allowing. I’m a mom with TWO teenagers, so I spend a fair bit of time UBERing them around town and look forward to the day when they can do the same for me! I co-own a kitty with the neighbor who lives six doors up, and my home rarely goes without a fully stocked aquarium. Netflix is my university and non-fiction is my “go to” at the book seller. I dream one day of having a cottage by a lake with some land and a John Deer tractor, but that is conditional on my husband retiring, and I don’t think he ever will. *laughs*

  1. Do you belong to a writing circle/group?

Absolutely. For about five years now. I don’t think I would have stuck it out in the early years without it.

  1. If so, what do you like about being in the group?

Group keeps the energy level ramped up, even during the winter months when the Flu hits. *lol*

  1. Do you have any new stories on the go?

I have two unfinished manuscripts to tackle after I finish SHELL GAME. THE HEUER EFFECT is a prequel to my first novel HEUER LOST AND FOUND, and POOR UNDERTAKER is a sweeping historical romance about the rise and fall of the family owned Weibigand Brothers Funeral Home. Beginning in 1947, it runs up to 1975 — a fascinating time in near social history — and explains a lot of the character behavior found in SCOOTER NATION and HEUER LOST AND FOUND. Readers will get to meet the mighty Irmtraut Weibigand in the flesh, which is the most exciting aspect of all!

Thanks for being with us today, A.B. To find her and her books go to:

Geo Buy Link: http://myBook.to/ScooterNation

Geo Buy Link: http://myBook.to/heuerlostandfound

Website: www.abfunkhauser.com

Amazon Author Page: www.amazon.com/author/abfunkhauser

Twitter: https://twitter.com/iamfunkhauser

Facebook: www.facebook.com/heuerlostandfound

One Response to Meet Humour/Horror Author A.B. FUNKHAUSER

  • A. B. Funkhauser says:

    Thank you so much for hosting me, Maighread. The muse is strong. Something to do with the fall and pumpkin lattes, I think. lol. xo

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