|Corporate management is the use of human beings
as resources. So is vampirism. When a vampire is called in to turn an ailing biotech
comapny around, reorganization takes on a much paler cast.
What would happen if a vampire were to take over a company and reorganize it? And if that vampire were to feed not only on fresh blood, but also on fresh ideas?
This is the basis for Floyd Kemske's third corporate nightmare, a humorous but frightening look at corporate re-engineering. This is a case study you won't find in any textbook.
Human Resources was the first book to be edited in public, on-line. If you want to see early drafts and Floyd's editor's comments (all linked to show how the story changed over time), go to the Open Book Systems site.
From the Reviews
A wonderfully ambiguous and deliciously wicked tale leavened by humor (to borrow Mad magazines felicitous phrase) in a jugular vein.
Through narrative and ingenious plays on the sinister (and silly) double entendres of business lingo, Kemske has created a stinging satire of contemporary corporate life.
Kemskes books... are grounded in concrete detail, sharply observed. They exude the stubbornly persuasive qualities of lives seen whole. You wont forget them. You may not know any consultants, but you wont fail to be horrified by the way the vampire Pierce justifies what it is that he is doing to the loyal human resources in his care.
Floyd Kemske understands that some of whats going on in corporate America is so horrible that only fantasy can adequately depict it... He deserves to be read by everyone who has worked for a company and lived to regret it.
The Plain Dealer (Cleveland)
If youve been through a turnaround lately, you may be wondering why your neck hurtsor why your CEO has the office blinds drawn so tightly. For the creator of this button-down bloodsucker, the metaphor of boss-as-vampire is just another day at the office. Indeed, Floyd Kemskes view of the relationship between manager and managed might be a little bleak even for, say, Franz Kafka. After all, the urban vampire at the head of Biomethods, Inc. is the books hero... Although Kemske writes mainly for laughs, his insights into the pathologies of power give his books a serious, almost tragic edge.
While garnering good reviews in the book pages of leading newspapers, Kemskes writing takes corporate trends to their alarming and absurd extremes, transforming fictional HR departments into realms of irony and wry terror.
Human Resource Executive
Many of the idiocies of the modern corporation are acutely observed. The obsession with titles and demarcation lines; the difficulty of finding anybody who is actually producing anything; and the determination never to call anything by its real name.
This book... is a satire on the way companies treat people and ideas under the pretense of reengineering. Pierce is a character with bite.
Kiplingers Personal Finance Magazine
Despite the supernatural twist, Kemske captures perfectly the real human existential discomfort of life in the bizarre social microcosm that is the modern corporation.
Amazon.com (Literary Fiction and Classics Editor's Recommended Book, 06/01/97)
Read Chapter One of Human Resources!
Published by Catbird Press. $12.95 paper, 224 pp., ISBN 0-945774-29-X
Order Human Resources from Powells.com
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