It's come a long way, baby.
Hezbollah was originally conceived in 1992 when I decided to pay homage to my old band, my bandmates and our organization. Since I didn't want to write a tawdry rock novel, I decided to give it the JRD treatment with a 'what-if' scenario full of adventure and intrigue. It was nearly indie-pubbed by Ed and Jane Doherty, and would have ended up as a rare out-of-print book by now if I had chosen to do so. Fortunately their critic friends convinced them to back off, and I carried the project into the 21st century.
Time ended up dating the book so that I had to bump everything up a decade to keep the storyline relevant. Punk rockers became grunge rockers, Desert Storm became the Invasion of Iraq, and the male protagonists gave place to the females. All of a sudden the novel provided the female perspective of what the lives and times were all about. Suddenly I realized I had what would become a truly enduring work. After all, the females are the true survivors. Rock and roll warriors live fast, die young and leave a pretty corpse. The women remain behind to tell their stories.
I'm not fooling myself, this is a last will and testament from a dying breed. I went to Chi-Town and St. Louis for Halloween weekend to visit the last two punk clubs in those cities. Club Foot in Chicago is scheduled to close this month (Nov 2014). The Way Out Club in St. Louis is barely hanging on. We've got a metal club, Aftershock, outside our border in Kansas. Beyond that, nada. We're dinosaurs, my fellow punkers.
I'm leaving Hezbollah behind in the care of its new publishers, Editions Dedicaces. Hopefully the Millenials will pick up on it and discover what it means to be individuals, the need to stand alone from the pack rather than desperately seeking acceptance. Soon you find that there's others on the fringe, and your band of outcasts finds their own way of life.
Punk rock might even make a comeback.