Debut works from writers can be tricky, especially the ones that are self-published. With new technologies, the market has become over-saturated in recent years. However, since releasing his collection of short stories, ITCH, A.A. Medina has gone on to release his novella, Siphon, via Hindered Souls Press, making it an exciting year for him already with two releases just months apart. But how does ITCH do in its race to stand among the other self-published works?
It’s clear from the the beginning that Medina enjoys the shock factor. He builds all his stories up in the same manner and hits you with a punch at the end. How hard it hits you is another question. Every Night, the opening story of the collection, is tightly written and focused. It’s clear that there is a voice in there. The twist ending is not expected either.
When you take another story though, such as From Ripples to Waves, you can see it’s built up in the same manner as the others. There’s no doubt the story is tragic yet strange. However, when it comes to the ending, there’s no twist as it’s easy to see where the story’s going half way through. And that may be the slight problem that the stories, and Medina himself, have.
ITCH is a strong debut collection, considering that it is also a self-published title. The problem is clear though — change it up and have a variety in the tone. However, Medina still has a good while to do that with a strong start to his writing career.
Want to read our interview with Medina? You can read it here.