Modern Manners For Your Inner Demons

Series: SFWP Literary Award Winners
Paperback: 110 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1939650627
Cover Design: Gwen Grafft

About the Book:

The best-selling indie hit returns! This revised, expanded edition of Modern Manners for Your Inner Demons brings the darker side of social behavior back to the shelves. Tara Laskowski’s demonically clever stories break the rules of a “decent” society, providing a definitive guide on the etiquette of obesity, dementia, infertility, homicide, arson, and more. Blending humor with a sharp social commentary, Laskowski introduces us to cynical yet sympathetic characters as each story unfolds. Snarky but optimistic, these characters are the folks you want sitting next to you at your next dinner party…or in your prison cell.

About the author

Tara Laskowski grew up in Northeastern Pennsylvania, where many of her stories are set. She is the author of the story collection Bystanders and other fiction published in Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine, Mid-American Review, Flash Fiction International (Norton), and numerous other journals, magazines, and anthologies. She was awarded the Kathy Fish Fellowship from SmokeLong Quarterly in 2009, and won the grand prize for the 2010 Santa Fe Writers Project Literary Awards Series. Since 2010, she has been the editor of SmokeLong Quarterly. Tara earned a BA in English with a minor in writing from Susquehanna University and an MFA in Creative Writing from George Mason University. She lives in Virginia with her husband, crime writer Art Taylor, and their son.

Praise for Modern Manners For Your Inner Demons

“Even though she’s writing about arson, murder, obesity, infertility, etc., Laskowski maintains a warm core amongst her humor. She isn’t afraid to share some pain, rather than masking her feelings in jokes, and that depth makes this collection deeply satisfying to read.”
— C.L. Bledsoe, Prick of the Spindle

“Sly, clever, original take on the sad, bewildering, dead-on truths of being human.”

— Kathy Fish, author of Wild Life and Together We Can Bury It

“Highly inventive, but underneath, highly empathetic. Laskowski knows the human heart. For behind the devilish humor is raw emotion, even in such unsympathetic narrators as a pyromaniac.”
— Tara L. Masih, author of Where the Dog Star Never Glows
“The anxiety-ridden instructees of Laskowski’s stories tap dance their way through various awkward situations ranging from adultery to dementia. It’s fun to laugh at them, but by the end of each story, you can’t quite remember why you thought they were so dumb in the first place; these characters have problems and deal with their problems with dignity. Each of these stories start out in a sarcastic vein, yet the problems they address are heartbreaking, and each and every one of them realizes a protagonist, fully formed, with a past, a present, and a future.”
— L.W. Compton, The Collagist

“A zippy, provocative collection–just as wicked as the cover art suggests.”

— Laura Ellen Scott, author of Death Wishing