“Hey Mama, look at me, I’m on my way to the promised land…”
Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, I assure you, the story I’m about to tell you is true- all of it. Every small victory. Every little triumph. Every lesson learned. Every mistake made. Every misdeed cast. Every bit of bullshit. Every lie. Every defeat. Every disappointment. Every heart broken. Every tear shed. Everything I’m about to share with you, it all happened. It’s all true- all of it.
Impossible for you to know the emotional toll telling you this story has taken. The long days and endless nights, restlessly searching for the right words, in the right order; hoping it makes sense; hoping to be seen. Restlessly searching for meaning; enduring moments of despair; intense bouts of frustration; fists against the wall. Desperate to be understood.
Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, submitted for your scrutiny and judgement, this is my story- this is my life- and I am proud to share it with you; proud to announce the release of my very first book.
Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, welcome to hell…
“When the fantasy is all that’s left, the impulse is to get lost in it. You want to forget that you’re an arm above the water and your legs are giving out.”
Modernity is Hell. It’s a sentiment shared by many people, even if they aren’t honest enough to admit it. But what is Hell? Hell is the impermanence of identity, the death of authenticity, the absence of love. It’s the unsettling nothing you feel as you amble to work and back, numbingly consuming pop culture pleasures, sleepwalking your way through dead-end sexual encounters. Hell is the void, the death of God, the blurring of reality and fantasy, your own consciousness lost in the stew.
Welcome to Hell is a clear-eyed, touching examination of the world we live in. Equal parts memoir, cultural critique, meditation, and lament, “Bad” Billy Pratt’s literary debut traces a poignant line through his failed relationships and other life experiences, painting a stark picture of the abyss that we’ve been condemned to.
- Matt Forney, Editor-in-Chief, Terror House Press
Praise for WELCOME TO HELL
“This collection is, as they say, a mood; an elegy for lost Americana, a memory of a place you’ve never been. If seduction is getting lost in the incomparable alienage of the other, and writing is teasing out the universal from the particular, then Billy tries to capture a universal sense of feeling lost. You will be able to see how much he cares.”
- Zero HP Lovecraft, author of They Had No Deepness of Earth (2021)
“Billy Bratt wanders and wonders through the ruins of what is left of our civilisation and provides poolside musings on the facade of what now passes as human relationships in our atomised present day. With more than a helping of melancholy and longing for things which are now past, Billy Bratt writes in the mould of Delicious Tacos midway through an existential crisis. Enjoy these Despairing Tacos.”
- Mencius Moldbugman, contributor to Ending Bigly: The Many Fates of Donald Trump (2021)