Death Row Fiction
by Confessed Serial Killer Danny Rolling
Author’s Prologue to the First Edition
by Danny Rolling (2002)
Who has not, a hundred times, found himself committing a vile or silly action, for no other reason than because he knows he should not? Have we not a perpetual inclination, in the teeth of our best judgment, to violate that which is law, merely because we understand it to be such? — Edgar Allan Poe, The Black Cat
Novels are windows to “once upon a time.” We peer through to other worlds, where reality is more than point of fact. Rather, it acquiesces to a subconscious dreamlike state of fanciful intrigue.
Creative expression is literally heart and soul nailed to fallen pine. The sublime, seized by excruciating pain, aching to burst forth to brilliance. As all dedicated writers crucify themselves: sic itur adastra.
Hmmm… don’t you just hate that, when authors use foreign words and phrases to add an element of sophistication to subtext? As if its purpose is a private joke the reader is left to figure out on their own. Well, I won’t leave you to hang on the suffering tree. It means thus does one go to the stars, or this is the way to fame and immortality. Any writer of fiction who states otherwise is either delusional or motivated solely by profit. Such lack a true heart, and even though they produce literary works acclaimed as significant, ‘tis merely mechanics of intelligence.
Now, the starving artist pours out his or her guts onto every line. Nuts and bolts of creativity screw into your head, tightening down every notion to printed linguistics. The French put it this way: L’art pour l’art — art for art’s sake.
Sicarius was mostly a joy to write, although it was written during trying times, under difficult circumstances. A couple of chapters were written while I was doing a sixty-day stint in the hole for fighting.
Straining to focus by a dim security light on the catwalk, ink flowed and my imagination took me far away, to a place of endless possibilities. Being as I’ve always had a warm spot in my heart for horror, naturally, character and content flowed seamlessly in that direction.
The novel was written sitting on a two-foot by three-and-a-half-foot iron foot locker. No desk. No typewriter. No computer. It was written entirely in cursive, pen in hand, my ball and chain about my neck night and day ‘til satisfied I’d done enough penance — a sigh of relief breathed, a nod of the head and — penned the tale on the dragon.