Tuesday, April 21, 2015

A.B Funkhauser Discusses her Character: THE ODYSSEY OF HEUER


Heuer Lost And Found
Unapologetic Lives Book 1
A. B. Funkhauser

Book Description: Unrepentant cooze hound lawyer Jürgen Heuer dies suddenly and unexpectedly in his litter-strewn home. Undiscovered, he rages against god, Nazis, deep fryers and analogous women who disappoint him.
At last found, he is delivered to Weibigand Brothers Funeral Home, a ramshackle establishment peopled with above average eccentrics, including boozy Enid, a former girl friend with serious denial issues. With her help and the help of a wise cracking spirit guide, Heuer will try to move on to the next plane. But before he can do this, he must endure an inept embalming, feral whispers, and Enid’s flawed recollections of their murky past.
Is it really worth it?

THE ODYSSEY OF HEUER
From genesis to manuscript; from contract to print, Heuer calls the shots. Born out of funeral service folklore underpinned by the universal dread every funeral director shares that he or she might one day have to take care of someone they know, this character demands attention. But Heuer is more than a body waiting for the ministrations of the embalmer; he is pure, unmitigated spirit. Whether real or imagined by the people he leaves behind, his not being there anymore impacts them profoundly, evoking false memories, guilt, contrition and, finally, release. If there is life beyond the mortal coil, leave it to faith.

Heuer certainly wrestles with this. Dodging human associations in life, he begs to be discovered and remembered in death. Then and only then, can he be truly free. But before he can achieve that, he must come to terms with his own existence.“I think, therefore I am,” he muses in the opening chapters as he waits with his decomposing shell to be found. Yet this isn’t enough. Going through the identifiable grief phases, he is at once euphoric, then angry, despondent and hopeful. There is life beyond the pall; a life even beyond dreams. But is he entitled? Does he deserve it? Thematically, Heuer Lost and Found touches on some of my favorite personal tropes; what I call the ax grinders; namely, 1) that nostalgia hurts more than it helps 2) that kindness can be found in the oddest places 3) that prying is a lousy thing and 4) that people, no matter how insular, will eventually seek out others because we are inherently social.

It’s to this last point that I’ll focus the rest of this blog, given the prominence love takes not just in literature, but in our daily lives. What is a Heuer other than a word rhyming with lawyer? Heuer is, first and foremost, a man conflicted and odds with everything around him. Believing himself to be intrinsically bad owing to his father’s Nazi roots, Heuer decides at an early age that he is neither deserving of lasting companionship nor real satisfying physical love. Because of this belief, he is impervious to Enid Krause nee Engler’s affection for him when they first meet in late 1979 and then again in 2010, when she is his funeral director and he is her deceased.

“You are not remembering correctly,” Heuer insists as Enid attempts to preserve his remains per his elderly parents’ wishes. Her memories are her own, and these, much to her horror include feelings of “love” long lost, long buried. Resurfacing in these circumstances, she is ashamed, believing that it is no longer her right to mourn: she has a husband who loves her, and as a funeral director, she has an ethical responsibility to keep personal and professional interests apart.


Always at the crossroads in life, both characters face insurmountable obstacles in death. There is so much she needs to tell him, but he cannot hear; there is so much he can hear, but he cannot speak. Can love conquer all? Let’s hope it can. Crossing the great divide is no easy feat, yet Heuer can and he will, leaving Enid with an incredible gift that will endure.


Facebook: www.facebook.com/heuerlostandfound
See the first trailer featuring some sweet jazz:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f3beUBWf2CQ
Definitely see the second trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X-C5qBpb0Yc

Where I talk funeral parloring, Six Feet Under and the art of gonzo.
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Buy Link International (Location specific Amazons)

#contemporary #paranormal #adult #mortuary #fictionwithahintof #gonzo #HEUERLOSTANDFOUND #amazon #kindle


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Reviews:

Fresh writing filled with rich vocabulary, this story features a vivid cast of colourful, living-breathing characters. This one will keep you reading late into the night until the final page.—Yvonne Hess, Charter Member, The Brooklin 7

Ms. A.B Funkhauser is a brilliant and wacky writer …Her distinctive voice tells an intriguing story that mixes moral conflicts with dark humor.Rachael Stapleton, Author, The Temple of Indra’s Jewel and Curse of the Purple Delhi Sapphire

The macabre black comedy is definitely a different sort of book! You will enjoy this book with its mixture of horror and humour. —Diana Harrison, Author, Always and Forever

Heuer Lost and Found is a quirky and irreverent story about a man who dies and finds his spirit trapped in a funeral home with an ex-lover who happens to be the mortician. The characterization is rich the story well-told.—Cryssa Bazos, Writer’s Community of Durham Region, Ontario, Canada

Author A. B. Funkhauser strikes a macabre cord with her book "Heuer Lost and Found". I found it to have a similar feel to the HBO series "Six Feet Under".--Young, Author, A Harem Boy’s Saga Vol I, II, and III

Short Excerpt:

Enid Krause nee Engler had made her way down to the embalming room where he lay waiting for her. She paused on her way to dither over some emails and, he noted with approval, to check out Kijiji for vintage GTO’s. Next, she mucked about with the coffee maker, juicing up her brew with two bags of pre-packaged Columbian. This, he noted wryly, was not the wisest thing to do when one’s hands were already shaky. It was apparent to him that she liked her booze as much as he did, and if she were to play around with sharp things, she stood a good chance of facing him sooner, rather than later.
“It is here that you must speak to her,” the lamp intruded, muddling his thoughts and destroying his pleasure. He did not like this popping in and out at will inside his head. He hoped her powers were limited to audiences in the basement, but not so—she was a body trapped in a house she did not choose, yet her spirit travelled, permeating the mind at will. “If you want to move on, it must be so. Put things right, mein Schön.”
He frowned at her use of ‘Schön.’ It was his term of endearment, yet she took it for her own, as if her right to trample him escheated once he agreed to do her bidding.
Make amends. Sure. The Holy Moly Book of Hooey said so, but to which place would he go thereafter? The land of milk and honey, where everyone ran around in bed sheets? Or the other place, where no amount of sunscreen would help? “Neither,” the lamp said confidently, her words ironic, because she was a lamp and obviously hadn’t been anywhere. “To your purpose,” she said, twisting him in the direction of Enid, who muttered under her breath as she fumbled with her earrings.
He grinned, longing to see what she would do next: Fraulein Engler was obviously struggling over his dramatic return, and for good reason. They had not parted on the best of terms. She wept sentimentally in the coroner’s suite—woman’s tears—much to her colleague’s chagrin, and now she was dragging her feet like a shotgun bride. Walking alongside her, he thought about theatres and floorboards and actors moving from mark to mark, their steps mapped out strategically on the floor with sticky tape. “This is why people spend so much time and money on make believe, Mächen,” he said. “It’s so much better to watch.”
Enid managed to get past the door that separated the O.R. from Weibigand’s outer hall, where she was greeted by the buzz and hum of a big fan that would keep his stink off of her. He concentrated on the noisy traffic that was her brain: like car tires spinning, rubber burning, a lonely heart hammering, and an incomprehensible fear. He was in despicable shape and it would take every ounce of skill to bring him to heel.



About the Author:

A.B. Funkhauser is a funeral director, fiction writer and wildlife enthusiast living in Ontario, Canada. Like most funeral directors, she is governed by a strong sense of altruism fueled by the belief that life chooses us and we not it.

“Were it not for the calling, I would have just as likely remained an office assistant shuffling files around, and would have been happy doing so.”

Life had another plan. After a long day at the funeral home in the waning months of winter 2010, she looked down the long hall joining the director’s office to the back door leading three steps up and out into the parking lot. At that moment a thought occurred: What if a slightly life-challenged mortician tripped over her man shoes and landed squarely on her posterior, only to learn that someone she once knew and cared about had died, and that she was next on the staff roster to care for his remains?

Like funeral directing, the writing called, and four years and several drafts later, Heuer Lost and Found was born.

What’s a Heuer? Beyond a word rhyming with “lawyer,” Heuer the lawyer is a man conflicted. Complex, layered, and very dead, he counts on the ministrations of the funeral director to set him free. A labor of love and a quintessential muse, Heuer has gone on to inspire four other full length works and over a dozen short stories.

“To my husband John and my children Adam and Melina, I owe thanks for the encouragement, the support, and the belief that what I was doing was as important as anything I’ve tackled before at work or in art.”

Funkhauser is currently working on a new manuscript begun in November during NaNoWriMo 2014.

Twitter: https://twitter.com/iamfunkhauser




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1 comment:

  1. Thank you Rachael Stapleton for featuring me on your page. I'm starting down a really long road; a road made easier with the support of friends like you! Best.

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