Wednesday, January 22, 2020


Nature refers to traits and characteristics that are inherited or genetic in origin, while nurture refers to traits and qualities that are learned.
            In the writing of The Snowman and now Murder, Just Because the antagonist of both books, Stowy Jenkins, is evil personified. A hideous individual who kills simply because he can. In The Snowman, Stowy Jenkins sees his killing as an art and is almost naïve to what he’s really created. But in Murder, Just Because vengeance is his motivation. He’s out to destroy everyone. But what drove him to such extremes?

          In The Snowman, it seemed to be the relationship with his mother, he experienced physical and sexual abuse as a child. He killed for the first time at the age of 16, and enticed by the blood, he begins his work in blood art. In The Snowman, he appears almost naïve as he wonders why his art isn’t appreciated by the masses.

And why are the red-haired victims' deaths more brutal than the others? Is it because red is the color of his own mother’s hair? Does he kill because he was sexually abused,

           And what of his mother, what drove her?

           I’d say in this instance, for poor Stowy Jenkins, it’s both nature and nurture.

           In Murder, Just Because he’s been in prison for ten years, a time for reflection, answers, and an education in a more brutal sexual violence. But he escapes, and after ten years’ incarceration, his methods have become more horrific. His drive for revenge comes from his own understanding of who he is and why he is. He has nothing to lose which makes him a bigger threat.

           But had he escaped his mother’s grasp would things have been different? Or was the fact that she was a killer, an abuser enough to scar his genes?

            It’s an interesting question and there is no easy answer.

But Stowy Jenkins has no conscience, no feelings of guilt, as you can see in this short excerpt. 

Murder, Just Because

       There were no jack-o-lanterns, spiderwebs, or glow-in-the-dark skeletons decorating the so-called safe house, nor were there any bowls filled with chocolate bars and candy corn, but befitting the holiday, Fern Jenkins was suffocating in a horror movie-like atmosphere of stress and fear. She’d reluctantly agreed to let the police move her here after the death threats began, but that didn’t mean she had to like it, any more than calling this dump a safe house meant she felt safe.

Her cell phone rang, and she answered with irritation. “Hello.”

“Why, lover, what’s wrong?” Zeke asked with a smile in his voice.

“Zeke. Where are you? Why haven’t you called?”

“But I am calling my love. Don’t worry. It’s all proceeding as planned. Stowy doesn’t have a clue. Soon the cops will have him, and we’ll be free. I promise. Just stay cool. It’ll all be over soon.”

Before Fern could say another word, the line went dead. “Son-of-a-bitch. It’d better be. I haven’t suffered all these months because I love you. Stupid asshole, I swear I’ve never been a bigger idiot. The only reason you aren’t already dead is that I need your contacts.” She emptied her glass and laughed. “Believe me, killing you will be the highlight of my life.”

Stowy appeared from the shadows, “Killing, Mother, who’s on your shit list now?”


Learn more about Stowy Jenkins ---


Learn more about the publication of these books on my other blog.

Defending the Pen - To Publish or Not to Publish

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