.44 Magnum birthday means… Get Plucked!

Today I’ve reached that milestone… not sweet 16, far from it. Not even 33, the Rolling Rock year… no, today is my .44 magnumth birthday! And while I won’t drink a magnum of champagne or shave my mustache into a Tom Selleck Magnum P.I. lip broom, I am proud to announce the release of a new collection. My funniest, most twisted stories- from pulp and crime capers to spoofs, apocalypse, and Brown Sugar Brookdale, my Shaft-meets-Billy Jack biker kung fu bad-ass!

Get Plucked w_ BeardMy newest story collection includes a tribute to Elmore Leonard, where a computer nerd and an Island barmaid race against the mob; a shifty construction foreman encounters zombies and sex dungeons in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy; visitors review the Overlook hotel from THE SHINING; a psychotic virus hunter plans to unleash apocalypse during the panic of 2012; a kid who hides in the woods to scare urban  legend hunters gets a surprise of his own, and eight more twisted, dark and funny tales.

It is available for:

Amazon Kindle

Barnes & Noble Nook

Kobo E-readers through Watchung Booksellers, and BookPeople

Apple iBooks

Page Foundry

Scribd

These stories have never been collected before, and includes “Pope Lick Nuisance,” a new story that’s never been published. Kick off your summer with some laughs and squirms, and Get Plucked!

RIP, Elmore Leonard

A punch to the heart this morning. Elmore Leonard, author of 3:10 to Yuma, Get Shorty, Raylan and so many more, has died. We’ve lost a gent.

elmore leonard

My first introduction to his work was through film adaptations, Charles Bronson in Mr. Majestyk. My mother loved his books- Bandits especially- and I read Get Shorty and Rum Punch early on. My story “White People Problems,” a crime caper set in the Caribbean, was my homage to his unique form of chaotic, realistic thriller, with colorful but truly human characters figuring their way through bizarre situations.

Those iconic covers sure helped!
Those iconic covers sure helped!

He wrote tight stories but his dialogue and characters were what always held me. An American anthropologist of sorts, he collected familiar frenetic grotesques we could gladly cheer. Whether it was Jackie Brown, Chili Palmer, Mr. Majestyk, or Raylan Givens of “Justified,” he had a talent for creating unforgettable characters driven to get what they wanted, and we were happy to follow.

Rest in Peace, Mr. Leonard. Tonight I’ll raise a Rum Punch in your honor.

“The saying is: 1 part sour, 2 parts sweet, 3 parts strong and 4 parts weak.”

a recipe for Rum Punch. Mix ’em shake em, garnish with orange or lemon wedge.

1 cup white rum
1/2 cup dark rum
1/4 cup coconut rum
2 1/2 cups pineapple juice
2 1/2 cups orange juice
1/4 cup lime juice
3 tbsp grenadine syrup
ice cubes

Rum-Punch

Yellow Mama and All Due Respect

When it rains, it pours.

I’m extremely proud, “chuffed,” even, to have stories in both All Due Respect – the long form crime fiction webzine started by Alec Cizak and now run by Chris Rhatigan. Chris also reviews fiction at Death by Killing, co-edits the Pulp Ink anthologies with Nigel Bird, and is a fine writer himself. Alec has moved on to Pulp Modern, and has a few novels under his belt as well.

This story is my tribute to Elmore Leonard, and was originally written for a beach noir contest at Do Some Damage. I expanded and edited it, and I love the characters so much that they will appear in a novel sometime soon. A bit of pulp caper set in Antigua, where two honeymooners need help from Hazeldeen, a barmaid at their resort, and drag her into their “White People problems.”

White People Problems, in All Due Respect

Yellow Mama, named after Alabama’s electric chair, is a crime zine edited by author Cindy Rosmus, who had a cracking tale in last month’s Hardboiled magazine. Yellow Mama caters to dark noir and horror, and my brutal revenge story shows the lengths one man will go to, to avenge his family. Sometimes revenge is a real bear.

Play Dead, in Yellow Mama

I hope you like them. If you do, please leave a comment here or at the source, and share the links with your friends. I’d really appreciate it!

Monday I’ll announce the winner of the Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader: Flush Fiction giveaway, so stay tuned. 

© 2012 Thomas Pluck
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