The State of the Short Story in Crime Fiction

If you’re a fan of science fiction, fantasy, or horror as well as crime you might notice that there are fewer markets for short fiction for the crime genre than the others. Many come and go, even if they consistently publish stories chosen for yearly awards, they can’t seem to survive.
At SleuthSayers, I interviewed 7 editors of current and defunct crime fiction markets, print and online, about the difficulties, the state of the fandom, and what YOU can do to make a more vibrant scene.
And a reminder, Life During Wartime: 21 Stories by Thomas Pluck is now available for pre-order.  I know I just told you yesterday, but now I have this snazzy image that evokes the song from which the collection gets its title story. Remember to use code 25dob2017 to get 25% off!


Goodbye to ThugLit

It’s a sad day for us literary thugs. Todd Robinson announced on Facebook that the upcoming issue of ThugLit will be the last.

When I started writing again, I picked up a copy of The Best American Mystery Stories 2010, which included a killer story that had first appeared in ThugLit (“Blood and Dirt” by Ryan Zimmerman.) That was my first introduction to the magazine, which I then found and was filled with sadness because it was on hiatus. When Todd jumpstarted it back up again, I devoured it. It was as great as it ever was. And I’m proud that my story “The Last Detail” appears in issue #19.

If you want to pay tribute to a tireless editor who kept one of the few markets for hardboiled, unflinching crime fiction where people can say cuss words alive for so long, why not grab a copy? Or all of them?

Thuglit Pluck Yourself

ThugLit was a rare paying market for crime fiction, at $50 a story. It was a sign of respect to the writer, that your work has value, and it was much appreciated. At two bucks for the ebook and $6.99 for the paperback, it was easily the best bargain in crime fiction.

When the last issue appears I’ll share it here, and I hope you all will grab a copy, to help repay Todd for his years of editing a magazine in the red, for the love of the genre, and helping so many writers reach our audience.

And if you want to read a funny, hard-hitting crime series with heart, check out Todd’s The Hard Bounce, and the upcoming sequel, Rough Trade:zErvqOypRKCKQtXKwoBW_ROUGH TRADE  - Robinson.


Cruel Yule Launch Party!


Wednesday December 9th at The Mysterious Bookshop, ThugLit will be hosting the official launch party for their first holiday themed anthology. It contains my story “Letters to Santa,” which has delighted audiences at a few recent readings, and great fiction from Rob Hart, Hilary Davidson, Justin Porter, Angel Colon, Terrence McCauley, Johnny Shaw, Jen Conley, Ed Kurtz, Jordan Harper and Todd Robinson.

I’ll be there with most of the authors. Mysterious also has copies of Protectors 2: Heroes, which we will also sign; it includes exclusive stories by Hilary, Angel, and myself, and 100% of proceeds benefit PROTECT.

The party begins at 6:30pm on Wednesday the 9th and we’ll probably shuffle off to Shade or another local watering hole for eats and libations after. There will be beer and wine at the event. Peas will also be served. (I’ll give you a book if you come to the event, and tell me where that reference is from).

The Mysterious Bookshop is at 58 Warren Street, a short walk from the A/C/E train and the World Trade Center PATH station.

Cruel Yule! a ThugLit Holiday Anthology

My story “Letters to Santa,” which made one unfortunate fellow spew his drink out his nose at Noir at the Bar NJ, is available only in the new ThugLit holiday anthology, CRUEL YULE. It is available in ebook and paperback. And don’t worry, just because it has laughs doesn’t mean it won’t rip your heart out.

It also contains these stories by other illustrious writers:
MISTLETOE by Hilary Davidson
LETTERS TO SANTA by Thomas Pluck
FELIZ NAVIDEAD by Brace Godfrey (as discovered by Johnny Shaw)
THE BRASS COIN by Justin Porter
FORK by Jen Conley
UNHOLY NIGHT by Terrence McCauley
‘TWAS THE NIGHT BEFORE… by Todd Robinson


Announcing Cruel Yule, a ThugLit Holiday anthology

I am poud to announce that my story “Letters to Santa,” a deceptively innocuous titled horror tale that greatly entertained the crowd at Tumulty’s for the most recent Noir at the Bar NJ, will appear in ThugLit‘s first Holiday themed anthology, where it is among great company:

The perps: Rob Hart, Hilary Davidson, Angel Colon, Terrence McCauley, Johnny Shaw, Jen Conley, Angel Colon, Thomas Pluck, Ed Kurtz, Jordan Harper and Todd Robinson.

Cruel Yule cover

A release date has not been set. But you’ll want this one. A teaser opening line from “Letters to Santa.”

Letters to Santa - Noir Bar Quote

ThugLit says Pluck yourself…

Thuglit Pluck YourselfYou can get the newest issue of ThugLit here.  Celebrate ten years of hardboiled crime fiction and noir with a copy! It’s their 10th anniversary.

Jay Desmarteaux hits ThugLit

Jay Desmarteaux, the walking Cajun shitstorm who stars in “Gumbo Weather,” “Ramapough Ringer,” “Kamikaze Death Burgers at the Ghost Town Cafe,” and my novel BURY THE HATCHET (currently seeking representation) appears in a new misadventure, “The Last Detail,” in the new issue of ThugLit (number 19) for September/October. Yes, it’s a play on the Hal Ashby flick starring Jack Nicholson, but Jay’s not a Navy cop escorting a prisoner… he’s handcuffed to a fiery-tempered woman in her Corvette with an unpinned grenade, and it’s up to you to tell which is more dangerous.