Tuesday, July 31, 2012

A few links

It took a few years, but I finally have a story up at the fantastic Beat To A Pulp webzine. BTAP has long been a home to some of my favorite crime stories, and not to mention their fantastic anthologies. Truly some of the best collections for new crime stories out there.
Family Secrets is live now for you reading pleasure.

Also, I have another entry in my Revival House series at Criminal Element. I take a look at Atlantic City (1981) which is a film I think is in need of a rediscovery. Check it out.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

A Bouquet Of Bullets for you

My first collection of short stories, A Bouquet Of Bullets, is out now! It contains some of my best stories, some award winners, some never before published.

I hope you check it out. I hope you tell someone else to check it out. I hope you write nice things about it on the internet, your diary, the bathroom wall. I hope you check out the other Snubnose Press releases. I have a lot of hope for you.

A big thank you is due to Lauren O'Brien who not only shoved my ass off the couch to get this complied, but also served as my advanced reader and kept you protected from the stories that were deemed not quite worthy. There are 22 stories in here and she read more than twice that, so thank her for taking the bullet for you.

And a big thank you to Brian at Snubnose Press for his continued support of my work and for leading the charge for Snubnose Press to become a champion of writers everywhere. 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Writers With (Night) Jobs: Todd Robinson

Any man who willingly calls himself Big Daddy Thug is a man to be reckoned with. Todd Robinson has been a champion of crime writing pugs slugging it out underground for years through Thuglit, one of the most respected crime ezines out there. And the anthologies bearing the Thuglit name are among the best in neo noir fiction you can find. And I'm not even in them so I am not contractually obligated to say that so you know it's for real.

Then there's his writing. Oh damn, the writing. Up my alley is a cliche, but true in this case. Up my dark, piss-smelling, hooker infested alley. 

The evidence is collected in Dirty Words, which contains one of my favorite pieces I've read all year – the introduction. Todd Robinson doesn't give a fuck. About the only fuck he gives if for you to know how much he doesn't give a fuck. And he writes like it. You know what they say – dance like no one is watching and write like you don't give a fuck. Or something like that.

Wow, lots of cursing. Guess Todd inspired me.

I'll take the high road and not point out that his recent hosting of the NYC chapter of Noir At The Bar was a full year behind me in L.A. I won't mention it at all.

So let's hear what the man himself has to say.

What do you do as your day job?

I've worked in bars for over 20 years. Bartender, manager, DJ, bouncer. You name it, I've done it. Nowadays, I'm just bartending.

When do you find time to write?

It's hard. I'm a terrible time manager to begin with. Plus there's a little boy of my loins (who's going to be 3 in September) who makes working at home during his waking hours impossible.  Besides, there's nothing I'd rather do than spend what was once my writing time wrapping my head in tinfoil and playing Evil Robot to his Superman.

How has your job or coworkers ever influenced a story?

I don't think I could have been a writer without my job.  My last published story, "Peaches" (published in Grift Magazine) came as a result of an old-school Hell's Kitchen resident sitting at my bar and yakking for two hours. Had an ex-Army Ranger at the bar last night talking for three hours about his time working for "Big Mike" in New Jersey. Every few anecdotes, I'd stop him and say, "You know I'm completely stealing this shit, right?" He'd shrug and keep talking.

What would it take for you to quit and write full time?

A hell of a lot more money than the nothing that it generates now. Although I don't know if I'd ever leave the industry completely. It's too rich a mine for characters and stories for me to abandon it.

Do your coworkers know you write? Do they know you write dark crime fiction?

They do. I'm a shameless self-promoter at the bar. I even acknowledge that in the introduction to my short-story collection Dirty Words (available NOW for Kindle. Get it!) See?

What do they say about it?

Not much. They're as impressed with my lack of "success" as I am—which is to say, not at all. Keep in mind, I am in NYC, where every-fucking body is writing something, acting in something, etc, etc. When people ask me at work how the writing is going, I answer; "I'm still standing behind this side of the bar ain't I? You'll know it's going well by my absence."

With your work on Thuglit and publishing the anthologies you do a lot related to writing that isn't directly writing. Do you consider all the work that surrounds writing and getting your name out there a part of the "job" of writing, or is it something you'd rather be able to hire a desperate college kid to do for you?

Absolutely. Although the reputation we had at Thuglit leaned more towards the career-damaging side than enhancing. We operated with a, "Don't give a fuck WHO you are. You just better be good," philosophy. Some would call it an attitude, rather than a philosophy. (ahem) That attitude pissed off quite a number of writers who thought their name alone should have gotten them into the mag—writers who might have been able to help my career along at one point or another.

Meh. Fuck them.

Do you think people respect writing as a job, or does it come off as less "work" than a labor or office job?

Hell, I don't respect it as much as a labor or office job. If the process of writing was as hard as a lot of bitchy writers made it out to be, more people would be aspiring coal miners or data-entry assistants. To write is the dream. If your dream is to stock the shelves at the Entenmann's Outlet, God bless ya. You're probably a lot happier than me. There's not a steel plant worker in the world who gets through his days by thinking; "Could be worse. I could be writing." Some writers really need to shut the fuck up about that shit.

Be honest, if you wrote full time, do you think you'd be disciplined about it?

Probably more so. I would hope so. Christ, I would hope so. I'm plagued with too many ideas and not enough time. If I had it, I would really do some damage page-count wise.

What job, other than writing, would you most like to have?

I discovered late in life (by designing the website, its covers, yadda, yadda…) that I both enjoyed and supposedly had a knack for graphic design. I really dig it.

What has been your best job? Your worst?

Y'know? I love the bar I'm at right now. The owners are great people to work for, the bar and customers are for the most part chill, cool and literate. I have worked in some hellacious shitholes over the years, so I appreciate the place I'm at.

The worst is hard to nail down. I was a busboy at a wedding hall. The office gig I worked for nine months when I first moved to NYC was pretty hellish for the monotony. I've worked in bars that were hyper-violent both in reputation and in execution (but that was also kinda fun), I've worked for owners who were so fucked up and coked out that half the job was managing them. The absolute worst I would say was working for this twisted fucking Italian woman who knew absolutely nothing about the bar business, and only had the joint through the grace of her mother-in-law (who owned the building) and the fact that she was apparently at one point a little hottie and married a dumpy little  fucktard she could steamroll—therefore living a life of no consequence. That gig was just maddening. ARGUING with me that fucking Blue Moon was an import beer because it says "Belgian-Style" on the label—THREE WEEKS IN A FUCKING ROW!!!. Woman was seriously and dangerously stupid.

Fuck, I just got riled remembering the (short) time I worked for that crazy bitch.

When do you find time to read?

I have a long subway ride to and from work. I also can't sleep at night until I've read a couple of chapters. It's just a ritual, part of calming my brain before sleep that I've done since I was five years old.

Have you ever, or maybe how often, have you considered quitting and shacking up to write novels, money issues be damned?

Money can never be damned in my world. It's not even a fantasy that enters my brain. I've worked in bars almost non-stop since I was 19. My industry has no paid vacations, no sick days. You either work, or your family doesn't eat. It's even more hard-wired into me now that I have a son. I took one (ONE) sick day in 20 years when I thought I broke my foot, and that was nine years ago. It should be noted that I worked a double-shift (about 15 hours) ON that injured foot the day before. Wound up making the injury much worse. I did have a boss send me home once when I was behind the bar with a fever of a 105. I couldn't even stand any more. I told customers that if I could reach it, they could drink it, but I wasn't walking down the other end of the goddamn bar to make their Amaretto Sour.

What is your ultimate goal with writing? Full time journeyman or millionaire? Or are you satisfied doing it part time?

I used to dream of riches. Then I dreamed of making a living. Now I just appreciate any form of income from this shit. End of the day? I always appreciate someone really digging a story. I don't even focus on the "paying markets first" submission rule. I'm just writing to be read, hopefully to be enjoyed. Last week, this young girl who's a regular at the bar came down after work just to say how much she enjoyed the collection (Dirty Words available NOW for Kindle. Get it!). Didn't even stay for a drink. That made my month.

Given what you've earned writing, dividing it by the hours spent, what would you say is your hourly wage as a writer?

Pennies. Pennies on the hour. Maybe not even a whole penny. Seriously. Jesus, I've never really thought about that. You factor in editing time, and you couldn't find the hourly monetary amount with an electron microscope.


Do you have a spouse/partner that would support you writing full time?

She says she would, but I could never ask her to. It's not in my DNA. I need to contribute to my family. Writing just hasn't proven to be a way to do that for me.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Writers With Day Jobs: Benoit Lelièvre

Wanna hear something shitty? Benoit Lelièvre just got downsized. 
I never in a million years thought my little blog project of inter-
viewing writers about their day jobs would end up as a commentary 
on the current economic situation. And here's the kicker, he lives in 
Canada and his job got outsourced to Bangalor. 
Globalization indeed.

The only possible good news is he will now have more time to 
write. If we're lucky he'll write his particular brand of dark noir like 
the stuff he has published in the pages of Beat To A Pulp, Needle,
 Crime Factory and a place I'm proud to share pages with him, 
the Off The Record anthology.

And that's not to mention all the reviewing and blogging he does 
over at Dead End Follies. Seriously, the guy reads a lot and he 
wants to tell you about it.

Well, since he answered my questions while still gainfully 
employed, let's look back to a happier time when a great writer 
was slugging it out at a day job.

What do you do as your day job?

   I'm an IT Analyst in a solutions center. Many people confuse me with a telemarketer or a customer service guy, but all I really do all day long is fix computers, install printers, debug browsers, that sort of stuff.
When do you find time to write?

   I do a lot of it at work. I am blessed to work a smaller market with less calls and have a manager who tolerates my creative endeavors. I think he's just happy I don't spend my downtime dicking around on the internet like most people. It's hard, but I work two days from home, so I always do a little more during those days. I write at home too, but usually late at night. I do my best work from 9 PM to 1 AM.
Has your job or coworkers ever influenced a story?

   Not yet and I don't think it will. Not for this job anyway. I wrote my first flash about a co-worker at an old job. He was a very straight guy, so I wrote a story about his Kung Fu fighting alter ego named Sifu Kevin McElfesh. The story is lost on the internets now. I'm not sure it still exist.
What would it take for you to quit and write full time?

   A steady income. I have a very supportive significant other, but I wouldn't be able to let her handle all the heavy lifting with the bills and all. I made peace with the idea of keeping a day job. William Faulkner worked most of his life. Charles Bukowski also. Frank Bill still works. I don't mind. The important is to keep balance.    
Do your coworkers know you write? Do they know you write dark crime fiction?

  They know I write, but they take little to no interest in it. I don't think anybody at my workplace ever bothered reading my published shorts. They are vaguely aware I write dark stuff too, but discussions about writing I had with them never went very deep.
What do they say about it?

    I'm a bit of the resident-Shakespeare-wannabe of my office. It's what I've been all my life, really. Wherever I went.

Do you think people respect writing as a job, or does it come off as less "work" than a labor or office job?

   It's a very good question. Writing is an idea that is heavily romanticized. They see it as the greatest job ever that most people could do. How many times have you heard someone say "I could write a novel, I have awesome ideas"? It happens a lot. Truth is, it's very hard work and it can be extremely draining mentally. David Foster Wallace lost his will to live to an unfinished novel. It's a job that requires humility, great planning skills and a high level of tolerance to job instability. So no, it doesn't get as much respect as labor or office work. 
Be honest, if you wrote full time, do you think you'd be disciplined about it?

   I'm not sure what to answer to that. Writing (for me) is all about finding your groove. Once you start pounding the words and the story starts playing out in your head you can do a lot of good work in little time. I think I wrote the first draft of UNDEAD in two hours. Writing full time would make it easier to establish a routine where I could find my groove easier, but you can't really ever hide from the internet. At least not forever. Let's say it would improve my discipline, but it wouldn't turn me into a typing machine overnight.
What job, other than writing, would you most like to have?

   Boring answer but journalist or video game designer. Something, anything entrenched in pop culture. I've tried to get a foot in the door in many video game companies, but it's a hermetic market. I did QA testing, but that's it.
What has been your best job? Your worst?

    Working QA for video game testing was awesome. It was hard work, paid minimum wage, but I was doing what I love. I gained a better understanding of the video games industry and formed strong friendships.

Worst was being a trainer in a franchised gym. Everything about that job was terrible. I was the new guy, so I got very few (shitty) hours. The boss was creepy and held a photo of his dead sister on his desk, like it was his wife. A co-worker kept trying to get me into a pyramid scheme for miraculous protein shakes. They didn't want me to get my certifications, because they said I didn't do enough hours. 

The worst was this assistant-director. He squirmed his way into the position. He made his girlfriend pregnant and cried to Mr. Creepy Director that he needed the money. I was coming back home after training at my martial gym around 10 every night and I often found 3 or 4 messages from him, yelling and saying I needed to come replace him ASAP for a reason or another. Shitty reasons like: "I HAVE A HEADACHE, I NEED TO GO HOME. COME REPLACE ME. NOW."  He threatened to get me fired, to kick my ass. I left town for two weeks during Christmas (and notified them) and I just never went back. When I picked up my tax papers three months later, there was a completely new staff. New director, new assistant, etc. It wasn't the same place anymore. Oh and the assistant-director's girlfriend went and had an abortion. It was hell.

When do you find time to read?

   I read in public transportation a lot. I read every morning before going to work and a few pages before going to bed. Other than that, I squeeze a little time here and there. I read about sixty pages a day in average.
Have you ever, or maybe how often, have you considered quitting and shacking up to write novels, money issues be damned?

    Not so far, no. 
What is your ultimate goal with writing? Full time journeyman or millionaire? Or are you satisfied doing it part time?

   I want to be a working stiff. My two models are Craig Clevenger and Joe Lansdale. Both are very respected and both have succeeded very differently. They're not headliners at bookstores, but they keep knocking quality material again and again. A certain level of success is nice, but passed a certain point you get disconnected with what it is to struggle and you start being self-indulgent. Moving to full-time writing would be nice, eventually, but I prefer being that guy with the small, cult following rather than the best-seller writer like Lee Child or my personal favorite Dennis Lehane. I suppose it's because I'm like that myself. I'm that guy who goes to midnight screenings of Ichi The Killer...for the fourth time.

Given what you've earned writing, dividing it by the hours spent, what would you say is your hourly wage as a writer?

  About 3 dollars a year. Maybe 2.50.
Do you have a spouse/partner that would support you writing full time?

   Yes, she's very supportive. But she doesn't take any shit. I love her for that. 

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Writers With Day Jobs: Jason Stuart

Everyone raise a holler, Jason Stuart is here! See what I did there? Jason's book, Raise A Holler is out there kicking ass and taking country noir names. 
It's hard to get a straight answer from Jason on the interwebs. He's a sarcastic son of a gun. So let's hope he was honest enough here talking about jobs past and present. Yeah, I don't have much hope for that either. The good news is, he's so damn good when he's making stuff up. Need evidence?
He's the main force behind Burnt Bridge press, but let's hear about what else he does with his time.

What do you do as your day job?
Well, I don’t know if it is a day job. I teach writing to primarily air force personnel in a small college office on a major air force base in Biloxi, MS. I work noon to night Monday through Thursday. It’s pretty interesting. I always imagined myself getting a teaching gig on a typical small college campus, but this situation has its perks. I get to see hellacious jets firing off the runway and coming in for a landing. Our graduation ceremony is held annually in an aviation museum with a quartet of f-14 fighter jets suspended over our heads. My students typically have decent-level security clearances. I got to learn about the fighter cap that is flown over every major city since 9/11. Let’s just say YOU REALLY DON’T WANT YOUR PLANE HIJACKED THESE DAYS. Not that it was ever awesome, but you’re going up in flames immediately now. Courtesy US Air Force. 

When do you find time to write?
I’ve been so busy this past year with work, running the magazine (I edit Burnt Bridge, an online pulp fiction ‘zine and annual anthology), traveling, being in love, and all the other life stuff, that, well, I damn near haven’t. I managed to finish a very respectable short story called “2 Doc Hollidays” and was extremely elated to have that published by a longstanding favorite magazine of mine, Beat to a Pulp. Besides, that, I’ve been picking, and I mean picking, at a novel trilogy I’ve been working with for nearly ten years called The God-Brother. I typically have always done my best work in the wee hours. The rest of the world sleeps. I write. I should do that more. 

Has your job or coworkers ever influenced a story?
Oh, sure. For years and years I co-managed a small movie theater while in college. My co-workers and all became good friends and that was when my writing really took off. Little from that period has survived but I sort of gained my chops. I used to sit up half the night and burn through rough prose long after the last films dropped and the customers were a distant ghost in the night. I wrote a piece, originally titled “The Good Times Van” that was a thinly-veiled re-telling a night of seriously idiotic drunken hijinks recounted to me by co-workers. I later cannibalized much of it and translated it into a dark, comic-ish noir piece called “One More Silver Dollar,” which was not only my first paid story publication ($25 – WOOT!!) but also the story that gained me admission to the University of Florida writing program – Go Gators!!
Since then, I’d say I’m always influenced by all the people and things around me. Given my earlier description of the very military and aviation aspects of my current job, we can expect some heavy influence from all that. How it will manifest itself, who knows? But, I’m keen to find out. 

What would it take for you to quit and write full time?
A solid $35,000/year income from writing alone. And even then I would teach part time. I like it. And it sharpens my editorial skills (I teach college-level writing).
But, obviously that’s the dream, isn’t it? Or is it? I don’t know. I like the idea of working full-time in the industry, and also working for myself. But, there’s also this weird sense of doom that follows with it. Like, what if the money dried up? The books stopped selling? The writing got tired? I have recently seen an all-too-real cautionary tale of a writer contact of mine who has suddenly found himself in this position. After over ten years of regular income from published writing, it has all but dried up in the current economy. He then came to the painful realization that the corporate/labor world outside his door does not consider this standard employment, and it more or less reads on a resume that he’s done nothing for ten years. He can’t get any kind of normal job now. He’s lost his house, sold his car, etc. It’s pretty rough out there. So, maybe I’d never quit the dayjob. At least not until a pension could kick in. 
Or, you know, if I sold some rights to Hollywood and made a massive chunk of cash all at once. Like half a million or more. Then, I’d put it in savings and draw out of it carefully and cruise into old age, Hemingway-style! 

Do your coworkers know you write? Do they know you write dark crime fiction?
They do and they don’t. They know I write. They know what I write. I’ve passed around copies of the books. They very clearly didn’t give a rat’s ass, and that was just fine with me. I’d rather no interest than a negative interest. 

What do they say about it?
Oh, I guess I already shot past this one. Yeah, they don’t say much. They’re those 80% or so Americans who just don’t read. And, they certainly don’t read gritty, explicit crime fiction like I write. If anything, they read the standard Wal-Mart checkout aisle fiction, whatever’s hot and easy and right now.And, I used to worry a lot more about some the raunchy situations in my writing. But then 50 Shades of Poor Editing came out, and I seem tame, if well-articulated and punctuated, by comparison. 

Do you think people respect writing as a job, or does it come off as less "work" than a labor or office job?
They definitely do not. See my example of the unemployed writer above. 
Though, that’s not strictly true. Any of the big-listers like Stephen King, John Grisham, Lee Child, JK Rowling, etc, I’d say are seen as “doing a job.” And, I’d say a lot of it really depends on your “pro chops” i.e. are you actually earning money from it, and beyond that, are you earning a living from it? IF it pays your bills, then, quite simply, it’s your job. 
However, I’ve had a lot of jobs, and a lot of rough jobs, and I will be the first to tell anyone that calls writing “hard work” either a liar, or a pampered ass. Writing is the most fun job there is. Yeah, it’s work. But it’s great work!

Be honest, if you wrote full time, do you think you'd be disciplined about it?
If it paid my bills? Damn straight I would. Hence why the writing takes second place now to the paying gig. I don’t mess with the hand that feeds me. So, yeah, I’d be diligent. 

What job, other than writing, would you most like to have?
Boat captain. Private international shipping. That was actually a plan, once upon a time. I tried to join the Navy, go through the officer program, gain experience in surface command and then leave for private sector and get on with a shipping crew. I had the whole thing thought out. Then I failed my medical  because of weird past disease history stuff. So, I went to grad school for writing/teaching instead. 

What has been your best job? Your worst?
Best in terms of stability and income is hands-down the current. I can’t complain right now.
However, best in terms of fun and craziness goes like this:
I was living in South Mississippi, about 50 miles from the Coast, when Katrina hit. The whole town was in chaos and turmoil. My grandma has a country store outside the little town I’m from. Naturally, all infrastructure, power, water, law, human decency, were immediately out the window. And I mean all of it. People took to carrying firearms on their person within hours. It was the Wild West. I almost watched an old west gunfight go down over ownership of a chainsaw in front of the country store, both men tickling the butts of their pistols until I got them to calm down and the dumber of the two to leave before he got killed. It was a little tense. 
Anyway, my younger brother and I got commissioned by my Grandma to go out to a little salvage warehouse about 20 southwest of us that she knew of. There were no phones working (cell towers were down everywhere). She had sold out of EVERYTHING in the store within hours after the storm died. We needed food, any kind of food, water, drinks, and any other useful supplies to restock the store. I drove a huge 4x4 Chevy Tahoe at that time (best truck I ever owned). She filled up the gas tank, gave us several hundred dollars cash, and told us how to get there and who to ask for. We took off in my truck, my little brother LITERALLY riding SHOTGUN (as well as two pistols and a knife!). We got to this place, a page straight out of Texas Chainsaw, and started negotiating with the owners. We came back with several cases of baked beans, soups, and a crate of fresh eggs (our store had a generator kicking all through the weeks of aftermath). We sold out of the eggs within hours. 
We ended up doing this about every other day for two weeks until some semblance of life began to return. Always armed to the teeth because we’d heard tales of cars being hijacked on the roads just for the gas in their tanks. And had anyone known that I was toting 30 gallons in the tank, $900 cash, or, worse yet, cases of food stuffs and water, then, yeah, things might have gone hardcore Mad Max on the back roads of South Mississippi. I think my brother may still be sad it never did. 
So, yeah, from a writer of crime/noir/adventure, that was definitely the coolest job I ever had. 

Worst Job? Jesus. Let me make a list and you can pick: 
  • Loaded chemical fertilizer by the tens of tons one summer for ten hours a day. Quit when my foot turned yellow. 
  • Mixed and poured concrete in the blazing sun of August. Laid brick and other construction. 
  • Picked crops every day for three summers as a kid. Every morning at dawn. 
  • Taught at a poor high school 
  • Drove a laundry truck for Yellowstone park (not as bad except the company was stealing money from us).
  • Bouncer at a country/western nightclub
  • Process Server for various law firms
  • Dishwasher for a chain restaurant 

Actually, you know what? It was Dishwasher. Hands down. Worst. Job. Ever. 

When do you find time to read?
I read constantly, just not much fiction these days. Or, at least, I don’t get to read a lot of novels. I buy a lot. I buy damn near every good-looking independent crime novel out there. I’ve got yours. All the Snubnose titles, I think. Neil Smith. Etc. But, I’ve finished maybe a fifth of those. I start. I get interrupted, I get distracted. I end up starting something new.
I read short fiction by the bushel, mostly submissions to Burnt Bridge, but I also follow the pulp ‘zines. They’re handy on my android phone when waiting in line at the barber, or out shopping with the lady I love, etc. God, I love smart phones. 
I also read a ton of articles, nonfiction, science journals, medical news, etc. That shit gets it done for me. I like “knowing things.” I feel starved for information if I spend more than an hour away from news sources. This is perhaps detrimental to my writing regimen. I just feel this need to “know.” 

Have you ever, or maybe how often, have you considered quitting and shacking up to write novels, money issues be damned?
Well, the dream for me has always been a standard college teaching job, in which I get the summer, in which I plan to do just that. We’ll see if I ever get there. 

What is your ultimate goal with writing? Full time journeyman or millionaire? Or are you satisfied doing it part time?
For right now, I have a really good set-up. The work I do with the college is a nice compliment to being a writer. I may always be a part time writer. Who knows. I do really want Dwight Yoakam to take a look at my book, Raise a Holler. I’d love him to act/direct the film version of it. I’m currently adapting a script from it (movies were always my first love). 
So, I’m always hopeful. 

Given what you've earned writing, dividing it by the hours spent, what would you say is your hourly wage as a writer?
Wow. Maybe 40 cents. 

Do you have a spouse/partner that would support you writing full time?
You know what? Maybe. I know she loves me very much. Karen does. I think if she made enough cash to do so, she very well might. But, I’d never do it. I NEED to work. It’s genetic or something. I need to earn my keep and DO work. If it came from writing that would be great. But, I’ll go pour concrete again before I just sit around not earn. Work is in my blood. I come from a blue-collar father who came from a long line of no-collar farm-folks. We know poor. We know work. We know them damn well. 

Monday, July 9, 2012

The World's Shortest Zombie Story

Not one to be left on the sidelines of the zombie fiction revolution, I have written the world's shortest zombie story. It is called:

by Eric Beetner

Used coffin for sale.

The End.

Friday, July 6, 2012

In Print At Last & a Contest!

I finally got off my ass and have put Dig Two Graves out in a print version. Special thanks go to R. Thomas Brown (he of Hill Country fame) for formatting the book for me. I went with an alternate cover for the different version. Why the hell not? It was one of the first I designed for the book before we went with the current ebook version. I figure it will make a nice companion to A Bouquet Of Bullets when that comes out later this month.

So Dig Two Graves can be yours in a real old-fashioned book version for the low, low price of 5.99. I wanted to keep it cheap since a) it's a novella and b) I want people to read it. I also included a short story as a teaser for Bouquet of Bullets. See? I'm looking out for you, the consumer.

I listed some of the uses for a honest-to-goodness paper book on Facebook when I announced it, such as squashing bugs, propping up a wobbly table, hollow it out and keep stolen money inside (although it's a novella so don't steal much, or if you do only go for the large bills)

I'd love to give away a copy of the hot-off-the-presses Dig Two Graves. Just go on Twitter and put what you'd do with the book, aside from read it, and add the hashtag #digtwograves. I'll pick my favorite alternate use for the book and send you a copy of Dig Two Graves as well as my first two novel with JB Kohl, One Too Many Blows To The Head and Borrowed Trouble. All signed of course.

So get thinking of what else to do with a small rectangle of bound paper.

Monday, July 2, 2012

A Mouth Full Of Blood released!

My second Fightcard book, A Mouth Full Of Blood is out today! The sequel to Split Decision, this one got a rave review only minutes after it went on sale. The kind words ("I think Eric Beetner's latest addition to the Fight Card series, A Mouth Full of Blood is the best in the series so far.")  came from fellow Fightcard scribe David Foster (King Of The Outback). Hopefully it is the first of many to come.

David also created the amazing alternate print cover (riffing off the always impressive Keith Birdsong who does all the ebook Fightcard covers in his typical in-your-face style. See below) The print version is coming very soon. Takes a little longer than the ebook, as you would imagine. 

Want to try a sample? Go to Criminal Element for a free excerpt of the first three chapters.

Did you get your .99 copy of Dig Two Graves during the Snubnose Press June anniversary sale? NO? Well, don't sweat it. Dig Two Graves is back up to a new, lower full price. Only 1.99.

And speaking of print versions, the print version of Dig Two Graves is also coming very soon for the low, low price of 5.99. Alternate cover created by your truly, just like I did the ebook cover.

Also in the coming soon department is our next Noir At The Bar - L.A. event. We're really proud of this one. The lineup includes, and get this – Megan Abbott, Sara Gran, Christa Faust, Denise Hamilton and Jeri Westerson.

Can you believe that? So grateful to all the great writers for accepting our invite for what is sure to be a hell of a night.

More news soon!