Exclusive: the book trailer for Kevin Helmick's novella, "Driving Alone"

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Kristina Blank Makansi, Publisher: 314.363.4546

Blank Slate Press Publishes Driving Alone, A New Novella From Kevin Lynn Helmick  


 (ST. LOUIS, MO)  Blank Slate Press is pleased to announce the publication of Driving Alone, a Modernist Southern Gothic novella from Kevin Lynn Helmick. Helmick, who is also the author of Heartland Gothic, Clovis Point, and Sebastian Cross, is known for gritty dialogue, fast-paced prose, complex themes and multi-faceted characters.

“Kevin is a master when it comes to drawing multi-dimensional characters whose depth challenges readers’ expectations,” Kristina Blank Makansi, publisher of Blank Slate Press said. “For instance, Billy Keyoe, the protagonist of Driving Alone, is both heartbreakingly tender and brutally violent, and every time I think of him, I think of Wordsworth’s line from ‘Song of Myself’—‘Do I contract myself? Very well, then I contract myself, I am large, I contain multitudes.’”

Helmick’s body of work addresses difficult subjects and confronts readers with moral problems that revolve around poverty, race, prejudice, organized religion and political correctness. In Driving Alone, he writes deeply flawed characters and unflinchingly peels back the layers to reveal their humanity and pain. Ultimately a love story, Driving Alone takes readers on a tour of the human psyche and shows how true love can heal a damaged soul.

While Driving Alone developed organically, changing shape during the writing process, Helmick knew he wanted to write “an American novella, short, southern, and sexy like a Tennessee Williams play.” Blank Slate Press believes he succeeded beautifully. “The first time we read it, we fell in love with it. Our books are chosen by an editorial review board, and the vote for Driving Alone was unanimous.”

Initial reviews of the book include:
“Finished reading Driving Alone by Kevin Lynn Helmick. Driving Alone recasts the manic pixie dream girl as a noir, bruised angel of judgment wandering the back roads of the American South, waiting at the crossroads to be picked up by desperate drivers running from themselves. Highly recommended.”

- Spinetingler magazine

“Driving Alone is gorgeously grim new take on redemption and romance. It is unsettling and provocative; combining the classic romance of the open road with the claustrophobia of a morality play. If Hell is other people, Driving Alone has the Devil riding shotgun.”

- Jared Shurin, reviewer for Pornokitsch, director and literary judge for The Kitschies

“Hardboiled, hardbitten and haunting as well as lyrically libidinous and lovingly lascivious, Kevin Lynn Helmick tackles sex and death along the lost highway the way the damned do—alone.”

- Jedidiah Ayres, author of A F*ckload of Shorts

“An intense nightmare that shimmers with beauty and darkness. Helmick broils these characters in southern humidity and human tragedy until the reader is left sweating, breathless and amazed.”


- Fred Venturini, author of The Samaritan

“A journey into darkness and painful self-discovery … a brilliantly lyrical and  richly painted hybrid of noir and magic realism. Superb.”

- Paul D. Brazill- The Gumshoe, Guns Of Brixton, Drunk On The Moon


“When the read is over, the Cadillac and Billy are still driving the back roads and lonely black top of your imagination. The book is fast paced, and the suspense dangles there, resolution always just out-of-reach as the pulse quickens and the page turns. It is sexy, violent, introspective and dark - a classic.” -  Stephen Handal


Driving Alone is available in bookstores and online in both electronic and print formats. All Blank Slate Press books are available to the trade from IPG. For more information, or to schedule an interview or a speaking engagement, please contact:

Kristina Blank Makansi, Publisher - kbmakansi@blankslatepress.com, - 314.363.4546

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