And now, without further ado, Manuscripts Burn is proud to present: The Devil.
Lucifer: Thank you, Mr. Kozeniewski. It is not often I get to represent myself in such a… ahem… dignified forum.
SK: Okay, first question: do you know what that icy precipitation that falls out of the sky is called?
L: I imagine you are referring to snow, or sleet.
SK: Hail, Satan. Get it?
L: Very droll.
SK: Okay, now that the ice is broken (ha!), our first real question: Why do bad things happen to good people? And, conversely, why do good things happen to bad people?
L: Ah, the myth of “good” people. I ask you, Mr. Kozeniewski, do you really know any good people? Do the people you know donate all their time and money to charity and behave with kindness and mercy to all they meet? Or do they espouse philosophies to the detriment of the human collective, spend most of their hours working for corporations that exist only to increase the profits of the wealthy, and generally engage in behavior designed only to improve their own meager existences? It’s true that most people don’t get what they deserve. They get much, much better.
SK: Wow. Heavy. Let's lighten the mood a little bit. Beatles or Stones?
L: One of those bands wrote a song about the ceaseless struggle of my existence, and the other endlessly yammered on about about how “all [we] need is love.” I’ll let you form your own opinions about my preferences.
SK: Good choice. Let's take a little bit of a different tack. When it comes to your own popular portrayal, most people would agree that there are three exemplars in literature: Milton's PARADISE LOST, Bulgakov's THE MASTER AND MARGARITA, and Corrigan's EARTHBOUND ANGELS. How do you feel about those? Or do you prefer a different interpretation of yourself? Perhaps from a different realm of pop culture?
L: I feel Bulgakov’s work speaks for itself. Milton makes a number of good points regarding the circumstances surrounding my infamous Fall, but he fails, in the end, to accept the tyranny of Heaven for what it is. As for other works, I generally don’t engage in the narcissistic pastime of seeking out representations of myself. I have some fondness for Anne Bishop’s BLACK JEWELS series, if only because her Saetan bears nothing in common with me.
SK: Interesting. Very interesting. So how are things going with you and Yahweh these days? Do you think you two are going to patch things up anytime soon? Did he finally remember your birthday this year?
L: Considering that “patching things up,” as you put it, would entail me giving up my power and spending the rest of my existence pandering to the needs of barely sentient monkeys, I believe I shall continue our estrangement.
SK: I'm going to give my last question up to the people. A few weeks ago I solicited my fans asking what they would want to ask you. They, ah…they did not take the question very seriously. However, I did get one non-wisenheimer response: "Why cancer?"
L: An intriguing question. People generally consider my realm that of evil. But cancer… Cancer is randomly mutating cells growing faster than is natural. So, cancer, really, is chaos. And I think we all know who is responsible for chaos.
SK: Well, thanks for being with us today, Lucifer. Any words of wisdom or advice you'd like to close with?
L: I’d just like all humans to remember that while Heaven may ignore your prayers, we denizens of Hell are always willing to lend a helping hand, for a reasonable fee.
Elizabeth Corrigan has degrees in English and psychology and has spent several years working as a data analyst in various branches of the healthcare industry. When she’s not hard at work on her next novel, Elizabeth enjoys singing, reading teen vampire novels, and making Sims of her characters. She drinks more Diet Coke than is probably optimal for the human body and is pathologically afraid of bees. She lives in Maryland with two cats and a purple Smart Car.
You can find Elizabeth on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and her website. Buy her debut novel ORACLE OF PHILADELPHIA and her sophomore novel RAISING CHAOS.
Synopsis of RAISING CHAOS:
When good fails, chaos rises to the challenge.
The daily life of a chaos demon is delightfully sinful—overindulging in Sri Lankan delicacies, trespassing on private beaches in Hawaii, and getting soused at the best angel bar on the planet. But when Bedlam learns that the archdemon Azrael has escaped from the Abyss in order to wreak vengeance against the person who sent her there—Bedlam’s best friend, Khet—he can’t sit idly by.
Only one relic possesses the power to kill Khet, who suffers immortality at Lucifer’s request: the mythical Spear of Destiny, which pierced Christ’s side at His crucifixion. Neither angel nor demon has seen the Spear in two thousand years, but Azrael claims to know its location. Bedlam has no choice but to interpret woefully outdated clues and race her to its ancient resting place.
His quest is made nearly impossible by the interference of a persnickety archivist, Keziel—his angelic ex—and a dedicated cult intent on keeping the Spear out of the wrong hands. But to Bedlam, “wrong” is just an arbitrary word, and there’s no way he’s letting Khet die without a fight.