You hear about Whitey Bulger being caught? Dunno what it might say about me, but as far as I'm concerned, this feels like bigger news than Osama Bin Laden taking the bullet cure. I'm wondering though if this whole thing wasn't orchestrated by Dave Zeltserman to sell more copies or possibly the film rights to his Whitey & Winter Hill Gang inspired Pariah. What? You haven't read it? Brothers and sisters, please rectify that.
Speaking of big Dave, I'm slowly reading through that On Dangerous Ground anthology of western noir that he co-edited with Ed Gorman and Martin H. Greenberg, and I really dug the Terry Tanner piece All Good Men about a prisoner at Yuma biding his time bent on killing two other inmates. You get a chance, check that one out. That Greenberg cat edits the hell out of some collections don't he? I just got a couple of the strangest anthologies I've ever seen, also from Cemetery Dance Publications, the other day and one of them had Marin's name on it: Screamplays an anthology of... wait for it... screenplays. Yup, horror screenplays from the likes of Gorman, Joe Lansdale, Stephen King, Richard Matheson, Dean Koontz, Harlan Ellison and Richard Laymon. Martin's co-editor was Richard Chizmar and he had solo editing credit on the second, Smoke and Mirrors which was the same concept and featuring a bunch of the same names plus Stewart O'Nan, Frank Darabont, William Peter Blatty, Neil Gaiman, Joe Hill, Poppy Z. Brite and on and on and on. They're hefty fuckers too. Been flipping through them. I'm always curious how other folks writer screenplays and make 'em readable. Of all the bound screenplays I've read, I think I like The Coen Brothers' the best. These aren't shooting scripts, they're reading scripts and there's a big difference for anybody not actually trying to make the film.
Have you seen the new Noir Nation eMagazine? I love seeing Cortright McMeel's name on there (one of the guys behind Murdaland magazine and the author of Short.) He, Eddie Vega who was also involved with the Murdaland, and Alan Ward Thomas are editing this beast of prose and graphic fiction, poetry and apparently they're gonna put short noir films up there too? Interesting... veddy intelesting. I'm wondering if Paul von Stoetzel has got his eye on that one. You remember Paul, the dude making the short film based on the Dennis Tafoya short story from Crime Factory, How to Jail? Paul's been reading some of my shit recently and apparently digging it which is tremendously gratifying. (I'm looking forward to catching his The Curse of Yig, an H.P. Lovecraft adaptation.) Any way, Noir Nation international journal of crime fiction. They're stressing the international thing. Good. Oh, and look whose popping up in that first line-up, my man in Poland, Paul D. Brazill. My gawd, he gets around.
While we're talking internations and internets, I got an offer for some eReview copies of titles from Melville House publications which look promising. I've got my eyes on More Beer by that German guy Jakob Arjouni. How could you go wrong with a title like that, huh? I mean, if the book sucks, just take the title as a suggestion and your time is bound to improve, yeah? Though, drinking around an eReader or in my case my computer, is probably not a good percentage move.
But if you're somebody who likes to live dangerously and read electronically and would like a free eCopy of Donald Westlake's God Save the Mark? Apparently, if you sign up to The Copia social-e-bookstore you'll get one... looks like they give away more cool titles like John Ball's In the Heat of the Night and W.R. Burnett's Little Caesar. 'Course, if you like to be allowed to spill your drink, or smear your barbeque sauce on your reading material without ruining it, just leave a comment on this piece, and you may win a Westlake or Richard Stark book you could hold in your hands! Selections are limited, but hey, they're free and touchable, so go ahead and leave a comment. I've got, uh three? to give away.
That Westlake. Man, he cranked em out and they're still finding em. Charles Ardai over at the relaunching Hard Case Crime is going to town on these unearthed Westlake and Mickey Spillane titles. If The Comedy is Finished is as good as Memory - the last last unpublished Westlake - then sign me up. And Max Allan Collins has got a new Quarry book - Quarry's Ex as well as the co-authored Hammerless tome The Consummata a few weeks later. Throw in Lawrence Block's Jill Emerson resurrection Getting Off and Christa Faust's second Angel Dare episode Choke Hold and I say, damn, I've missed you Hard Case.
Backtracking a moment to Lovecraft, Derek Nikitas is working on a hugely ambitious novel about H.P., Aleister Crowley and W.B. Yeats. Yikes, that sounds awesome, especially if you've read Derek before. And most especially if you've read The Ballad of Larry Plank, his contribution to the N@B anthology... I'm so excited about putting that one out. It's a great story, (cycle of stories, actually.)
Talky of N@B, our little event seems to be contagious. I mentioned before that Frank Bill is hosting a book release party for Crimes in Southern Indiana in southern Indiana on September 10. He'll read of course, as will me and and Kyle Minor and and and... Frank asked me not to say until he'd made an announcement, but if you follow his Twitter dialogue with Keith Rawson or his Facebooking comments on Steve Weddle's page, then you already know... And your mind is blown by how awesome the event is going to be. Na-na-na-na-na.
BTW - have you seen the cover for Blackmoore's City of the Lost? Got a nice picture from Sean Phillips the badass motherfucker who draws that motherfucking badass Criminal comic, y'know, the one Ed Brubaker writes. Score. Over at Ransom Notes, I'm talking up the other Ed, Ed Lynskey's rednexploitation novel Lake Charles. A lot of fun. Check it out. And while I'm on about the funny papers, I just got Jason Starr's new Batman/Doc Savage/Avenger First Wave special. Let's see, can I share this one with the kids?