Fielding Bliss has never forgotten the summer of 1984: the year a heat wave scorched Breathed, Ohio. The year he became friends with the devil.
Sal seems to appear out of nowhere – a bruised and tattered thirteen-year-old boy claiming to be the devil himself answering an invitation. Fielding Bliss, the son of a local prosecutor, brings him home where he’s welcomed into the Bliss family, assuming he’s a runaway from a nearby farm town.
When word spreads that the devil has come to Breathed, not everyone is happy to welcome this self-proclaimed fallen angel. Murmurs follow him and tensions rise, along with the temperatures as an unbearable heat wave rolls into town right along with him. As strange accidents start to occur, riled by the feverish heat, some in the town start to believe that Sal is exactly who he claims to be. While the Bliss family wrestles with their own personal demons, a fanatic drives the town to the brink of a catastrophe that will change this sleepy Ohio backwater forever.
An Ohio native, Tiffany McDaniel’s writing is inspired by the rolling hills and buckeye woods of the land she knows. She is also a poet, playwright, screenwriter, and artist. The Summer that Melted Everything is her debut novel.
You can learn more me at my website:
Here’s the Goodreads link to the novel:
The Amazon link is here:
1. What books are sitting on your night table right now….don’t cheat?!??
I actually don’t have a night table. I’ll be dramatic about its non-existence by saying I’m an owl without a branch. But in the stack of books I have to read next are two of Shirley Jackson’s novels, The Sundial and The Bird’s Nest. I love her writing like the stars love the moon. So she’s always around me. I’m in the middle of reading Robert Bloch’s Psycho (The book behind Alfred Hitchcock’s masterpiece film). A book of collected poems beneath the book of Howard Carter’s account of unearthing the tomb of Tutankhamen. I really wish I was with Carter when that happened. How amazing that would have been to fling open the doors of centuries (King Tut curse or not). I will say there’s always an R.L. Stine Goosebumps in there, because even though I’m thirty-one, I’m still that Goosebumps and Fear Street kid at heart. This time it’s The Abominable Snowman of Pasadena.
2. Who inspired you and why?
Writing is the first thing I remember doing as a child outside of any external influence or direction. I’ve always been driven by that internal flicker, to create something from it. Nothing really inspired me to write. I just knew I wanted to be around story, create story, and live with it. Writing is my compass. My lighthouse safely guiding my ship to shore. I’m lost without it.
3. Catherine Mckenzie needs her tunes, Dan Brown needs his gravity boots, Susan Elizabeth Phillips has to take off her bra. What do you need to do to write?
First of all, I love that Susan Elizabeth Phillips takes off her bra. That’s relatable. Let the hills rolls free. For me, as long as I have my sanity (and just as creatively important insanity), my heart, and my imagination, that’s all I need to write. For many years I didn’t even have a desk to write on or a desk chair to sit in. So I wrote on my bed with my laptop on my lap in a room with three windows that couldn’t open and with tape covering the window’s broken cracks and breaks. So really I’m just happy to have a desk to write on, a chair to sit in and a good window I can open.
4. Where do you get your ideas for your stories? This story is very unique. Where did this idea come from?
I always say my ideas come from the elements that make me. Somewhere in the thread of my DNA and my soul, the ideas exist. I’m not really sure where else to say they come from. I just know wherever they come from is out of reach, existing as fragile as a cloud, as strong as iron.
5. Who is your favorite author? I could never narrow it down to one so, the more the merrier.
I can’t narrow it down either. I feel like I wouldn’t even be able to make the choice if I were able to only save one of them if all my favorite authors were dangling off a cliff. I’d try to save and hold on to them all. I will say I love Ray Bradbury and Shirley Jackson. Those are probably my top two. They’re my rocket ship and sugar dish in a castle. All you Bradbury and Jackson lovers will know what that means. But I also love poet James Wright as well. Lesser well-known, but he and his words was and is pure magic. Spark, spark, glitter and all that jazz. If his ghost wants, he can definitely haunt me. Heck, that goes for Bradbury and Jackson as well. Bring on the haunt.