Monday, January 26, 2015


I was going to promote The Stuff That Dreams Are Made Of today, but, frankly, I’m tired of treading the line between promotion and bloviating. I don’t much like telling people how good my book is and how they really, really ought to read it if they want to be happier/have nicer hair/better sex/live longer. I think it’s a good book, but I’m prejudiced, not to mention a writer (read: introvert) and not a marketer (read: extrovert). It’s not only awkward for me, it’s exhausting. So, not today. If you think you might like Stuff, or any of my books, I’d be delighted if you bought or downloaded a copy, and will sign a paper copy any time you want. If not, buy someone else’s book. There are a metric shit tonne of excellent writers out there, as even a brief perusal of posts here will prove. Read any the authors mentioned. You’ll thank me for it.

So what am I going to post about, if not as an act of shameless and blatant self-promotion? Well, there are a few things:

McFly Day 2. The original box of books for The Stuff That Dreams Are Made Of
had some errors I hadn’t caught. Friend of this blog and blogger extraordinaire himself Peter Rozovsky pointed them out and I corrected them. While the errors
weren’t major—not as bad as some professionally edited and printed books I’ve read recently—the books didn’t meet the standard I like to set, and I appreciate Peter’s pointing them out. That was the last book I’ll self-publish without first availing myself of his professional services. It’s nice to think the original versions with the errors will be worth something someday, but I’m pretty sure the only five copies ever printed are in my office, so you missed your chance. That ought to learn you.

(Editor’s Note: I thought you weren’t going to promote the book.)
(Author’s Note: That’s just a mention, not promotion. They don’t want to buy the fucking book, they don’t have to.)

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The Center for Fiction’s Crime Fiction Academy posts interviews and talks from noted crime writers. I’ve seen the interview with Elmore Leonard (Part Two is here) and the talk given by Dennis Lehane (also in two parts). Both are educational, engaging, and funny, well worth the time. Other authors in the series include Michael Connelly, Laura Lippman, and George Pelecanos, though I’ve not had a chance to check theirs out.

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I have long considered Ed McBain’s work to be the apotheosis of crime fiction, so it was better than good news to learn last week Hard Case Crime will re-release two early (as in pre-87th Precinct) McBain novels, both out of print for over sixty years. So Nude, So Dead will launch in July, with Cut Me In to follow in January of 2016. Details and samples of each can be found by following the links. Congratulations and thanks are due Charles Ardai, one of the good guys in publishing, for bringing these back.

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Every parent worries if they’re doing it right. Rarely is the correctness of an approach brought home as well as was done for me last week, when The Sole Heir told me a brief anecdote that took place between her and The Beau. They were cooking, and he didn’t think she used enough non-stick coating on the pan. She acknowledged she might have used more, but had recently received a
“Think you used enough dynamite there, Butch?” from me in a similar situation. The look he gave her made it obvious he had no idea what she was talking about. Understanding references to movies released 22 years (and more) before her birth was a bit of a project we undertook when she was about eleven years old, so she’d understand cultural references derived from those films. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Jaws, The Bridge Over the River Kwai, Animal House, Lawrence of Arabia, The Big Lebowski, both Godfathers, Alien, Aliens, The Terminator, Terminator 2, and probably fifty more over the years are familiar to her when they might not otherwise have been. We’ve all seen Internet lists of the “Ten/Fifteen/Twenty Greatest Movies Ever For [some quality],” that include only movies made in the past fifteen years or so, or since the writer first started paying attention. The Sole Heir knows better, and I’m happy to have played some small part in that. Our educational and entertaining screening room is available to her and The Beau on request.

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