Jason Miller moved to Nashville more than twenty years ago, but he had to return to the speech patterns and vocabulary of his family and friends in Southern Illinois to find the voice for his debut novel, Down Don’t Bother Me: A Slim in Little Egypt Mystery. Miller has already enjoyed great success in voice-dependent writing, including graphic novels and tweets. Recently named one of the funniest people you haven’t heard of on Twitter, Miller also writes for RiffTrax, the successor to the cult TV show Mystery Science Theater 3000.
Down Don’t Bother Me isn’t lacking in laughs, but for his Little Egypt mystery—the first entry in a planned series—Miller had to alter his comic approach for this sustained narrative about coal miners and their neighbors. Slim is a coal miner with a smart mouth and poor impulse control, which has led to a less illustrious career than his estranged father’s. When the owner of Slim’s mine dangles the carrot of a secured pension in front of him, Slim comes above ground to get involved in a very dirty missing-persons case. Balancing his job, his investigation, his daughter, and his girlfriend requires Slim to ask for help from his giant of a friend, Jeep Mabry, when facing off against villains with hearts darker than bituminous coal.
To download the podcast click here. To see a short video clip from the interview, click the play button below:
To read Chapter 16’s review of Down Don’t Bother Me, click here.