A Devil Comes to Town – Paolo Maurensig



In the spirit of it being submission reading season, we have a special book to recommend. “A Devil Comes to Town” is an absurdist gothic about publishing and writing.

Foxes in Dichtersruhe are dying of rabies, and that can only mean that something bad is on its way. This small mountain town (in Switzerland) is unique because every single resident proclaims to be a writer and has a manuscript waiting to be published. One day, a black car rolls up and out comes a mysterious and foreboding man. He is a publisher from “the big city.” He announces that he is there to host a manuscript competition and the winner’s manuscript will be published.

The once quiet town is completely thrown into chaos. Town residents become untrustworthy of one another and become increasingly narcissistic, going to devious means to ensure their own manuscript wins. Worse yet, the publisher, who confesses to be the devil himself, has no intention of reading any of the manuscripts or publishing any novel. He’s only there to sow discord. The narration comes from the town’s only other outsider, the new parish priest, who happens to be the only person who does not have a manuscript of his own.

This book is a super fun and suspenseful read, coming in at only about 120 pages. I think anyone who has worked in publishing or is a serious writer will find this book painfully on the nose yet immensely charming.

Though, we hope you don’t see us (or any of the other EXTREMELY hard working indie publishers out there) as the devil…  We’re doing the best we can…

Story by The Editors