For me, it is extraordinarily gratifying to receive a "wow-he-really-got-it" review from a pure reader (i.e. a person I don't know from Adam or Eve and who bought the work). I met D. Preston McConkie (is that a great name or what, must steal it for future use) on eFiction, a very writer friendly site where participants also produce a digital magazine that is quite good. At least they published one of my pieces, so they must have good taste. Bear with me. Let me digress.
The great horror writer, H.P. Lovecraft considered himself an amateur writer. This did not mean he thought what he was doing was amateurish, rather it meant that to take money for writing fiction was, well, unseemly. Not the sort of thing an English gentleman (and Lovecraft was an anglophile) would do. He, and like-minded gentlemen and ladies, published in small magazines produced by like-minded folks. Golf had this phase, too, where gentlemen were amateur golfers, i.e. did not play for money (though I imagine there were plenty of side bets.)
Later, fiscal realities made Lovecraft quite happy to accept money for his stories. Reality has a way of trumping ideals.
In this new epublishing world, we are seeing again writers submitting stories for no pay to digital magazines: eFictionmag is one of them and worthy of your attention.
Through eFiction, I made Preston's acquaintance. Here is the bio he sent to me about himself:
Preston McConkie is a Gulf War veteran, former truck driver, news reporter and editor who now works as a freelance writer in Southern Utah.
My correspondence with him has convinced me he is even more than that summary and has a fiction voice that should serve him well.
The Strange Case of James Kirkland Pilley is my homage to Lovecraft. So when a reviewer as honest as Preston tells you, you have "out-Lovecrafted...Lovecraft," you sit up and pay rapt attention:
If you'd like to contact Preston, let me know and I'll put you in email closeness.