And Now, A Word From Our Sponsors: Me


“I have something to say, and one of these days, I’m going to stop writing these stupid books and say it.”

– Living epitaph on Kassel’s tombstone.


But seriously folks: As some of you know, when I accidentally checked ‘Author’ instead of ‘Hi-Lo Operator’ on the back of the matchbook that listed career choices, I was forced to embark upon a lifetime of literary lechery.  I snoggled and slavered over the requisite reliquary of writers. I consummated a mature relationship the greats while dorking the near-greats in my Chevy van, occasionally forgetting to call them in the morning. During the course of this prurient pathway, pausing only to catch my brain breath, I planted a few odd trees of my own.

The roster can be found by Googling my name alongside ‘’, but from time to time, I take a time-out from the wine column for a little personal plugola.

This is one of those station breaks.

The Blinding Glare of Darkness is my tenth book; it contains three short novels drawn in part from the fifteen years I spent in the mind-numbing world of Detroit automotive engineering and in part from the another fifteen years I spent in writing and co-producing documentaries for a Detroit film company.

The goal was to drill some drama into the dull and elevate the ordinary to the realm of extraordinary.  That’s the beauty of fiction: There are no constraints and the only rule is ‘No Rules’.

Demonstrated in The Blinding Glare as…

…A lonely addict interacts with his various adult children from the confines of a dystopian downtown tenement building.

…A Bloomfield Hills attorney becomes obsessed with a cryptic painting from rural India and abandons his career and family to search for the artist.

…A Ford assembly line worker with an abusive husband and an autistic son is rescued by a strange babysitter who recognizes genius beneath the scars.

Book  illustrations by my son, Jesse Kassel

Book illustrations are by my son, Jesse Kassel

Pledge Drive: You’re Soaking In It.

For the past half dozen years I’ve offered up this column gratis, keeping it free of advertising because, after the years I spend schlepping for Detroit’s Big Three, I have no wish to be beholden to anyone on any level.

Intoxicology Report, by design, has been something for nothing.

Now, it’s your chance to get something for something—I keep my books at $13 because I think it’s a cool, potent number and it seems like a pretty fair price for a piece of tactile entertainment that won’t vanish with a power outage and that you can pass on to others.

If I didn’t think these stories could hold their own in the rarified atmosphere of fine literature, I wouldn’t recommend them: In fact, I’d keep reworking them until they did.

Above all, I find the whole art of composing and/or consuming anything longer than a 140-character tweet to be an endangered species.  If you remain true to your reading roots and nibble at this brief interlude of self-promotion, I’d love your feedback.

The Blinding Glare of Darkness
is available at


“And we now return you to your regularly scheduled drivel….”

This entry was posted in GENERAL and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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