With an e-book recently released and a dead tree scroll due out in a few months, promotion has been on my mind. Unfortunately, it has been almost exclusively self-promotion, which always makes me feel a little like a politician, which is to say, unclean. I spend a lot more time reading other people’s stuff than writing my own—with good reason—so it’s time to give credit where it’s due.
Patti Abbott is hard to keep up with because she’s everywhere. Her most recent efforts include, “Floes the Ice” in Shotgun Honey, as well as “Won’t You Pardon Me?” in Plots With Guns. Her novel in stories, Home Invasion, currently has a five-star rating and is available for Kindle for $0.99. Her blog, Pattinase, covers topics from forgotten books to good things to say about Detroit to music to television, films, and whatever else comes to mind. I stop by several times a day.
Paul Brazill never sleeps. In addition to posting daily on his fine blog, You Would Say That, Wouldn’t You? he released two books in July, which is allegedly a vacation month. A Knife and a Quill says of Gumshoe, “The adventures of this PI feel like they rolled out of a Tom Waits song.” Of his newest, Guns of Brixton, Out Of the Gutter Online says, “Brazill has a knack for larger-than-life characters, tar-black humor, and sharp plots, and Guns of Brixton offers a great deal of all that.” McVoices has nominated Death on a Hot Afternoon as Alternative Crime Book of the Year.
Gerard Brennan is about as busy as Patti and Paul. (I’m sensing a pattern here and feeling like a bit of a piker as I do so.) He has a couple of new novellas vying for public attention. I read Welcome to the Octagon yesterday and kept thinking of what a good movie this story of a MMA fighter and single father would make, partly because it has a perfect plot for a movie, and for how well the descriptions of the fights put me on the inside. His newest, Wee Danny, is picking up good reviews faster than I can find links for them all. Save yourself some trouble and just get a copy.
Jochem van der Steen has a different perspective on private investigators. Noah Milano is the scion of a Mafia family who tries to make amends by becoming a straight PI, which isn’t always as easy as Noah would like it to be. Primarily a series of “novelettes,” Jochem’s treatment of what many would call a uniquely American genre proves those who would say that are nuts. I read and enjoyed Scoundrel and Redemption a lot; Noah’s newest is the novella, Guilt. Anyone wishing to keep up with what’s going on in Pi fiction should take a look at Jochem’s blog, Sons of Spade.
Steve Weddle is co-creator of Needle Magazine, as well as my favorite writing blog, Do Some Damage. Steve has been posting kick-ass short fiction all over the place for quite a while, and his first novel, Country Hardball is available for pre-order. There will be more on this one as the date approaches.
Jim Winter writes the Nick Kepler series of detective stories, set in Cleveland. (And I still read them; that’s how good they are.) His collection of short stories, The Compleat Kepler, does a superb job of universe building, showing Kepler in multiple situations. His newest novel, Bad Religion, starts out as the story of a shady preacher, but drags Kepler into a whole lot more.
There are others to catch up with; stay tuned.