Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Over at Ransom Notes I'm giving the rundown on a handful of books that fall into a couple of my favorite plot lines: people stuck in small towns and those on the run with a bagful of money. What I don't go into is my fear that the novel I'm about to start writing will retread too familiar ground. Seriously. I wake up some nights with a new book or movie I'm afraid people with think know that I'm ripping off. The list looks something like this - John Dahl's Red Rock West, John Ridley's Stray Dogs, Scott Phillips' The Ice Harvest, Cormac McCarthy's No Country For Old Men, Tony Scott/Quentin Tarantino's True Romance, Scott Smith's A Simple Plan, John Rector's The Cold Kiss, Gil Brewer's The Red Scarf and while it's not money, it's a helluva maguffin, Duane Swierczynski's The Blonde. I worry when I sleep, but while I walk around in the daytime, meh, doesn't bother me in the slightest. Dunno why that is.

Any people reading this in Fayetteville Arkansas, Memphis Tennessee or maybe Tulsa Oklahoma? Be alerted that Tom Franklin will be in Fayetteville this Saturday Dec. 4 and reading from Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter 7:30 at Nightbird Books, (205 W. Dickson St.). I used to live in Fayetteville, (as did Tom), and I'm making the trip to see Franklin, (and my family), along with Scott Phillips. If you're anywhere nearby, I'd encourage you to do the same.

Another former Fayetteville resident by who's name escapes me has a new essay about the influence the Ozarks have had on his writing at the Mulholland Books blog. I think it's a big deal whenever he publishes something I can read for free, so I'm glad to see him doing more web stuff. Did anybody else read his latest excerpt titled Blue Norton over at Narrative? Or how about that biographical piece at Granta online last year? Ooh, and don't forget Shitbird, also at Narrative. Good free shit, yo.

And speaking of free shit, you've got a couple more days to leave a comment on this post to win a copy of a Megan Abbott book, (either Die a Little or Bury Me Deep). You know how those Abbott books have that lived in and very sexy look on the covers? Thank artist Richie Fahey for those. Know what? He also did the cover for the New Pulp Press reissue of Gil Brewer's The Red Scarf. That's a damn good looking book. Oh look, we're back where we started.


Laura Benedict said...

What? No, FARGO?!

Have a great time at Tom's reading. Give him a big kiss from me. Or not. ;)

jedidiah ayres said...

Fargo! Great choice. Dammit, I suck

Cullen Gallagher said...

Red Rock West is something I've been curious about for a while -- if it's on your list, I gotta check it out. Thanks for reminding me.

You also reminded me of a bunch of other things I need to read.

Damn it. So much for crossing things off my "to do" list.

jedidiah ayres said...

Cullen - John Dahl's first three directorial efforts were some solid crime shit. Kill Me Again, RRWest & The Last Seduction - all multiple viewings for me. After that he became a lot more spotty, but I really loved Joy Ride and Rounders was fun. He's had a good second life as a television director too.

Stacey Cochran said...

My first post here, but I'd like to say... I wouldn't worry so much. If you're imitating those folks' styles, I'd be happy to read your work. :)

For what that's worth.

jedidiah ayres said...

Thanks Stacey. That makes one.