“Sometimes you stop by the convenience store for a slushy and the world just goes straight to hell, and takes you along with it. I haven’t had this much fun watching terrible stuff happen in a long time.” -Stephen Graham Jones, author of Mongrels
A Bizarro fiction tribute to the Kevin Smith cult classic CLERKS.
After a killer surf session, Scot Kring stops into his local Fasmart for a delicious, icy Slushpuppy. But before he can leave, a homeless guy outside has a stroke and accidentally recites an ancient Latin phrase that summons a very hungry demon, who just so happens to look like filmmaker Kevin Smith.
Now Scot’s stuck in a time loop along with the other occupants of the convenience store who may or may not be demonically possessed and he’s fighting back with nothing but a fistful of greasy hot dogs and a souvenir Slushpuppy cup as the giant menacing kaiju Kevin Smith threatens to kill them all.
I’m Not Even Supposed to Be Here Today is a demon apocalypse comedy for the slacker generation.
This week I will be reviewing all three of Brian Asman’s available books. His first novella, I’m Not Even Supposed to Be Here Today was released in 2019 by Eraserhead Press as part of their New Bizarro Author Series. The short novella centers around Scot Kring, a car stereo installer who is returning from work from an afternoon of surfing. He stops at a Fasmart for a Slushpuppy when a homeless guy outside is having a stroke, starts to mumble and summons a demon, who also looks like Kevin Smith.
This is such a short novel and much of it is fixed on the action more than the character development, but that is fine. There is a great amount of violence mixed with humor, so these two things carry the story. If Asman would have stopped to talk about Kring or Skater Girl more, the momentum would have slowed down, and this novella is all about pacing. The breakneck speed of the action makes this a fast read, but Asman’s writing and humor is what keeps the reader engaged and entertained. This feels like a strong beginning of his novels and novellas, like his creativity and voice are very developed but not where it will be in the next two books.
I like Kevin Smith movies, and I have seen almost all of them. I’m Not Even Supposed to Be Here Today might limit the appeal of some people because Smith can be a polarizing filmmaker. Asman seems to be aware of this so he does have the deep cuts for the true Smith fans, but the actual Kevin Smith aspects of the story are based on his most popular works. Even the title is very recognizable as a line from Clerks, a movie that if you have an opinion on Kevin Smith films at all, Clerks is on the radar. This means that I’m Not Even Supposed to be Here is not an alienating book, one that is only for true fans. It is a fun little story, and I would recommend it to anyone who likes demons, Kevin Smith, or Slushpuppy drinks.