Welcome to Psychic City

the cover of the book Psychic City by Page Turner. Title and author are superimposed in white over a background abstract inkblot image that moves in ombre style from red to black from top to bottom
Image Source by Braided Studios ©2020

I have a big announcement to make. My new book is finally out. It’s called Psychic City, and it’s a slipstream murder mystery that features an FFF triad of polyamorous detectives:

  • Penny, a sparkle goth medium who is hounded by hordes of undead fans
  • Viv, an eideticist with prophetic visions, a photographic memory, and a lot of family drama and emotional baggage she’d rather forget
  • Karen, an empath who spends a lot of time hiding under her hoodie

An Excerpt from Psychic City

Here’s an excerpt from the book:

The Department of Psychic Operations, or PsyOps for short, was located underground in a building whose ground level storefront housed a variety of failing businesses. Around Halloween it became a costume shop that sold cheap trinkets that probably wouldn’t give you cancer and could make you look like a passable witch. Or a sexy nurse. Or a sexy nurse witch.

Another time it had been a bakery that made low-fat donuts that tasted terrible. They did cause you to lose weight though since most people didn’t want to eat for the rest of the day after choking one down. So that was a plus.

Initially PsyOps had posted a guard on the premises. An invalidator, the kind of tuey that implanted thoughts into people’s heads that made them dismiss their beliefs. The idea behind this was that the guard on duty would sit in the shop, and if anyone wondered why random customers were going out back, ones who didn’t work behind the counter, then the invalidator would cancel that out with doubt. Within a minute or two, the customer would dismiss their suspicions as silly. Why would they ever think that? There were plenty of crummy shops, just like this one. Nothing to see here, folks.

But after a while, the department realized it could cut costs by not posting a guard at all. The businesses themselves were sufficiently terrible to keep people away. A few folks inexplicably bought things, but most people found the stores depressing and left.

As a result, the original invalidator guards were laid off. This was a big problem at first. Formerly confident residents were plagued by nagging doubts. Others reported issues with the neighborhood street lamps. They seemed to be dimming at random. But when PsyOps went to check, other witnesses swore that the lighting had been just fine. Nothing had ever happened.

The matter was never resolved and was moved indefinitely to the gaslighting division.

Several hundred psychic intuitives worked in this one branch of PsyOps, in the heart of Skinner, the Psychic City. The agents passed through the tacky shop. Pretended to the use the bathroom. Sneaked into the service elevator.

And down they went.

It wasn’t glamorous. But in a weird way, it was home.

-Page Turner, Psychic City

I’m Proud of the Book — But I’m Even Prouder That I Even Wrote It At All

This book is easily the best thing I’ve ever written. I’m quite proud of how it turned out. But I’m even more proud of the fact that I wrote it at all — because I couldn’t have done it without challenging some deep-seated phobias and healing in ways I never thought I would.

Three years ago, I wrote an essay called “Why I Don’t Like to Write Fiction: Comforting My Own Ghost.” It was a writing that resonated with a lot of readers at the time it came out and is a good read if you or someone you love has struggled with C-PTSD, PTSD, or both.

But here’s the gist: Once upon a time, before I went through a series of life and personality-changing traumas, I primarily wrote fiction.

After I began to heal, it took me a long while to write anything at all — and when I did, I switched genres and began to write non-fiction. No more fiction. It wasn’t exactly a conscious decision or something I chose, but instead there was a psychological block that formed inside of me, and I instinctively swerved away from a lot that had been associated with my life before the trauma. Fiction was one of those associations. I had been very sick the last time I’d written fiction, and I was coping with that sickness in ways that weren’t exactly healthy. Or to put it another way — I’d written an awful lot of fiction, but I’d never written fiction as a sober adult.

However, a few years ago my partner and some of my friends began to suggest, repeatedly, that I should write a novel. Because it would be good, they said.

At first I was very resistant to the idea. When I initially went to write fiction, it was practically impossible. This wasn’t willful resistance — it was more like there was an invisible barrier I would push against that would knock me down.

It wasn’t easy, pushing past that. My body would revolt sometimes. Sitting and trying to write fiction gave me flashbacks, especially at first. I’d start out writing and end up dissociative.

But I kept trying. And with persistence my body stopped freaking out.

Once that happened, I discovered something curious: The book I wrote became a vehicle to say a lot of things I’d always wanted to say but couldn’t — about non-monogamous/queer representation of course but also about life in general, family estrangement, insecurity, and what it’s like to be an outsider.

I half-killed myself to write it. But I made it. And I’m better for it.

And I’m thrilled to say that it’s finally out.

I really hope you enjoy the book.

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You can purchase the book from the links below. Want to help out? Leave a review after you’ve read the book. Thank you all!

 

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