Reader Art: Billy’s Sister from “Clean”


September 22, 2016 by T.E. Grau



Art by Jesse Turner

Visual renderings of concepts and characters that have only – to my knowledge – existed inside my brain, and then transferred by the miracle of reading into the brains of others, are always interesting and incredibly fun to witness.

Writers live and die by their ability to spontaneously conjure form, function, and mass from the empty storage spaces in the minds of others. Creating something from nothing, in essence. If we are unable to do that, to make a reader “see” what we’ve built, we have failed at our job, and are not actually writing. We’re just typing out gibberish.

In the case of the artwork above, inspired by my story “Clean,” there is an extra thrill, in that (**spoilers ahead**) the facial and detailed physical appearance of Billy’s sister under the wetsuit and motorcycle helmet is never described on the page. Yet the mind wants to go there, I’d wager. It did for me. And it also did for artist Jesse Turner, who created the artwork, framing it with nods to 80s nostalgia and “Tubby’s Big Swim” (Tubby Pictures needs to be a thing), the story that kicks off The Nameless Dark: A Collection.

I’m super honored that Jesse put this together, and happy that my work can create such images in others. So far, I’m doing my job.

Check out Jesse’s Deviant Art page (his WXXT Radio logo, inspired by Matthew Bartlett‘s excellent horror fiction, is super rad), where he posted the following related to “Clean”:

Boo! More Horror!

Hey Guys! I did up another horror image based on T.E. Grau’s short story “Clean” It’s from the very cool collection of called “The Nameless Dark”. I really enjoyed all the stories here so be sure to check it out if you are into the leaner side of Terror!

Clean is a great story that I thought would make a cool old 80’s horror movie. The story is presented a lot better than my cheesy interpenetration but hey, I’m a cheesy guy. It’s about a brother and sister who get by in life in a pretty interesting way.

I really like Grau’s writing style. It’s fresh and I always really end up loving the characters in them. “Tubby’s Big Swim” is probably my favorite story in the whole collection. Thanks for the great writing Grau! Here’s the amazon link for anyone who’s a fan of horror!…

-jouste the drawbarian


One thought on “Reader Art: Billy’s Sister from “Clean”

  1. Jacob says:

    Thhanks great blog post


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

I Am The River: A Novel

Nominated for the 2018 Bram Stoker Award® for Superior Achievement in a First Novel

They Don’t Come Home Anymore: A Novella

Winner of Dark Muse Award for Best Novella of 2016

The Nameless Dark: A Collection

Finalist for the 2015 Shirley Jackson Award for Single-Author Collection

La oscuridad innombrable

Spanish Ed. of The Nameless Dark - “El aullador” ("The Screamer") named Finalist for 2019 Ignotus Award (Spanish Hugo) for Best Foreign Story

Je suis le fleuve

French Edition of I Am The River, available January 9, 2020 from Sonatine Editions.

%d bloggers like this: