Monthly Archives: October 2007

A Very Special Halloween Blogisode

Happy treats, everybody. And remember:  honor your debts!

Pop. 1280. . .1279. . .1278. . . .


Over the weekend, I attended a special screening of Coup de Torchon, a French film adaptation of Jim Thompson’s novel Pop. 1280.


I’d never seen this film and did not know it existed. Having seen it now, I’m very very glad I made the effort. I won’t bore you with my thoughts except to suggest that if you’re a Thompson fan, or a film fan, or if you have a couple free hours, you might like to check it out.


When you’re done with that, go look at Savage Art, Robert Polito’s terrific biography of Thompson himself. It’s nothing short of fascavaginating.


Recently I turned to a short story I’d written eight years ago. Even by my own measurements it was a long short story, even approaching novella territory. But I’d always liked it.

Looking at the manuscript eight years down the line, I couldn’t help noticing all the words in that thing.

I decided to see if I could sweat the story down to fighting weight. After three days, my revisions had reduced the story by a full half without losing any of the actual story (at least, without losing any of the story that belonged in the story).

I’ve also noticed that over the course of writing four novels, from Dirt through The Cleanup, each book has taken longer to write, but has ended up with fewer words in it, than the last. 

I love the fact the Elmore Leonard’s new book on writing is only 96 pages long.

Bill Bryan Legal Fund

I apologize for this, America, but it needs to be posted. Please do what you can to help.

(This may not be work safe, but I suppose that all depends where you work.)


Way Up North (and back)

Bouchercon 2007 had:

If there was a low point to this year’s convention, it was of my own making, when I somehow managed to miss the presentation of the Crimespree Magazine Favorite Book of 2006 award for The Cleanup.

     I only wish I had a valid excuse beyond helpless dumbitude. The founders of Crimespree—Jon Jordan, Ruth Jordan, and Jen Jordan, aka The Jordan Media Group—were the very first people to start talking about my first novel, Dirt, on Internet newsgroups and elsewhere, and their support and friendship has meant a lot to me over the years. That makes this award extra special.

     All of which I would have said last Thursday night, had I been able to read a clock. And the Favorite Book of 2006 award goes to. . .the big fat jerk who just came in an hour late. Sheepish thanks (and hearty side-congrats) to Shamus winnner and all-around bloke Declan Hughes for being a proper Sean Doolittle. Eternal apologies to Jon, Ruth, Jen, and all involved with Crimespree Magazine. My subscription renewal check is in the mail. . . .