Friday, March 30, 2012

The Devil's Snare

Here's a short story for free on Kindle today: THE DEVIL'S SNARE. It's about 4,500 words long. In it, the Devil visits a 78 year old lady. She's good, you see, so he's on a mission to corrupt her. He's got a proposition, a deal, a contract. Will she take him up on his offer?

If you liked THE SCREWTAPE LETTERS, you might just like this one. If you haven't read Lewis' story, start with mine - it's free! Did I mention that?

Wednesday, March 28, 2012


Hardboiled? Check. Noir? Pretty much. Free? Today. Where? Try clicking here.

THE CONCRETE MAZE, free today for Kindle or Kindle app.

What's it like? It's like getting your guts kicked out of you, then handed back to you in a plastic shopping bag... Okay, that might have been a bit overboard...

Monday, March 26, 2012

Free E-book Ploy, Yet Again Edition

Just thought 'd do my best to let people know that I'm giving away THE CONCRETE MAZE, a hardboiled novel this coming Wednesday, March 28th. So save your dollar and download to your Kindle in a couple of days.

Instead, use that dollar on one of these fine hardboiled short story collections:



THE DEATH OF RONNIE SWEETS by Russel McLean. Actually that one's two dollars but very much worth it.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Free Kindle E-book

In case you were looking for a collection of noir stories that you could download for free to your Kindle, I've got one you might be interested in: KILLING WAYS 2: URBAN STORIES. Free all day. Get them while they're hot.

Here's the description I wrote up for Amazon:

Hard luck, hard knock, hot and cold blooded killers, criminals, and the people they collide with.

1 - The Biography of Stoop, the Thief - Chapter One: Stoop and Clyde. Stupendous Jones has had a hard life from the day he was born, but can he (as a twelve year old) save the life of the only guardian he's ever known? Should he even try?

2 - The Biography of Stoop, the Thief - Chapter Three: Stoop and Elizabeth. Stoop finally finds the woman he thinks is his mother, but will the cost of saving her from her own demons be too high for a young boy to pay? Publisher's Weekly called the story "moving." I challenge you to disagree.

3 - Bronx, Summer, 1971 - Ray Cruz hurts people for a living. When family members are found murdered, it's a race against the police to find the guilty and make them pay.

4 - Padrino - Ray Cruz is back, and his goddaughter has been brutally attacked. She's not sure who beat her, but Ray makes it his mission to find out.

5 - Elena Speaks of the City, Under Siege - It's a city under siege and you are young, beautiful and smart. But can you make it out of the city before your sanity crumbles like the infrastructure? And what would you do once you've left?

6 - Early Fall - Yolanda Morales comes across a young runaway who calls herself "Jasmine" and tries to save her from a life on the streets even if she doesn't want to be saved. But what can one determined woman do when the rich and reckless come to the city looking for prey?

Cursing in Spanish...

Russel McLean decided to take today off over at "Do Some Damage," so I'm taking his place. Did you want to learn about Spanish cursing? Migrate to the blog.

While you're at it, one of my ebooks is free today for your Kindle: KILLING WAYS 2: URBAN STORIES.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Kindle Free

I'm #1! My free Kindle novel, THE CONCRETE MAZE, is alone at the front of the line, the top of the hill. Okay so it's only under the "Hardboiled" heading, but still, that's impressive, no? Never been #1 before. And hardboiled isn't that small a subcategory is it? I'm also #85 in the Kindle "Free" category. Not so impressive perhaps. Also no idea how many are in competition with me there.

So who can I blame for this success? Let's start with Al Guthrie's CRIMINAL-E interview of me. And then I'm not sure I should list the people who dared to mention the giveaway and me to the people they know through social media like Twitter. I wouldn't like to be the cause of them being asked to do the same for complete strangers whose books they haven't read. They know who they are and that I am indebted.

And how many copies have gone? Let me see... I'm back. More than 2700 copies including 4 in Germany and one in France. Never gave anything away in France before. More than forty since I started writing this post.

Projection? Though I had set a goal of 1,000 copies given away, obviously I overshot. I suspect that I can reach 4,000 before the giveaway is over.

Next post? It will be about something other than the giveaway. Maybe even writing...

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Progress So Far...

Okay, day one of the great CONCRETE MAZE giveaway is about halfway done and since it is a two day giveaway, that means we're a quarter of the way through. What are the totals so far? About 370 kindle files downloaded. Amazingly, I'm #6 in the "Hardboiled" category... Wait. Just checked again and another 10 Kindle files have gone since I started typing the post a few minutes ago. Should I check again? Another five gone. Wow. This is great going for me. Quite pleased. Now, do you have your copy? No? Clicky.

Interview... With Free E-book!

Is there a new interview of myself up at CRIMINAL-E? Why yes, I think there is. Click... here, to take a look. Is there a free Kindle novel available there? Obviously... Now, whether you have a Kindle or a Kindle app. You can get my favorite novel* absolutely free. Could you wait and get it tomorrow? Of course, but why would you? Here's a description:

Hard-boiled, Noir this book is a look at the consequences of just one simple mistake...
When 13-year-old Jasmine Ramos goes missing, one man, her father, races desperately to save her from the horrors of life and death on the streets of New York City. Can he rescue his daughter from the pitiless concrete maze, or will he be swallowed whole?

* Favorite among the ones I've written. Overall, I'd say there are far too many to choose from. Dostoyevsky? Marquez? Dickens? Austen?

Free E-novel... My hopes, my plea...

Today and tomorrow (3/17-18), I'm giving away THE CONCRETE MAZE, a hardboiled, noir novel of about 72,000 words.  It was first published some years ago as a paperback, and got very nice reviews and blurbs from a wide variety of people. It's a quality product that didn't get into enough hands. I'm hopeful it does better now. I'm new to e-book advertising - most authors are. So far, in my giveaways, I've managed to give away as many as 430 copies in one day and as few as 4.

So here is my hope for this promotion: 1,000 copies given away. I know that for some authors that would be a disastrous result - I've heard some can give away that many in an hour. Heck, some can sell that many in an hour. For me, however, it would be a bit of a coup. Anything beyond that would be wonderful.

And here is my plea - If you Twitter or Facebook or have a mailing list of email addresses or participate on a listserv or just normally call a lot of people or don't mind shouting out your window or from your front porch, could you please let people know? Does it help to have the web address available? Here it is:

And if I've held your interest this long, let me say something about the story. In essence, it's about a father's love for his daughter - a little girl lost story. But not just that. If you've ever loved someone and then lost them, even for a moment, then recall that moment - when you turned arond in the mall and couldn't see your child, when you got a phone call from the police about your lover who is hours overdue, the message from the hospital left on an answering machine that merely says there's been an accident and can you contact them about someone who's place in your heart can't be filled by another. It's about that moment and what you would do to make it go away, to make things right, to bring your loved one home safe. It's about that.

Free E-book Ploy, Part VIII

If you're looking for a free Kindle e-book to fulfill your need for hardboiled, noir type fiction my novel, THE CONCRETE MAZE is free today and tomorrow (March 17-18).

Is it the best book ever? Yes. Yes it is*.

Did Megan Abbott like it? Yes, she did.
Sara Gran? Check.
Ken Bruen? Abso-fookin-lutely.
Russel McLean? Aye.
Jennifer Jordan? Positively.
Manuel Ramos, Wallace Stroby, Reed Farrel Coleman, Anne Frasier? Yes, yes, yes, and yes.
Jason Starr? Of course.

Will it keep you on the edge of your seat? So I've been told.
Will it wrench your gut? Break your heart? Kick you in the spleen? Yes, yes, and possibly.
Will you laugh in places that seem oddly wrong? Cry in spots that seem oh so right? Probably and a lot depends on your own self.

A bargain at $free, no?

* Written by myself, you see...

Friday, March 16, 2012

Free E-book Ploy, Part VII

If you've been waiting for THE CONCRETE MAZE to go free, just go to sleep and in the morning, your dreams will come true... Well, the dream about the novel being offered as a free Kindle at any rate. Just click on the title above and as long as it's the 17th or 18th of March, you'll be able to download to your Kindle or Kindle app. If you like hardboiled or noir, you'll be happy. Enjoy!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Reed Farrel Coleman giveaway

Reed Farrel Coleman is one of the more decorated novelists working in crime fiction - not tinsel, more like nominations and awards. And he's giving away one of his books for Kindle today. Get HOSE MONKEY free today.

Alternatively, you can get THE VALLEY OF ANGUSTIAS. Of course, you could get both for zero dollars, but it would require flipping back and forth to find to links, etc.

I forgot to say...

I've got one of my stories up free for Kindle: THE VALLEY OF ANGUSTIAS. This is the second day I put up for free; first time this month. Anyway, enjoy. Oh, and spread the word.

Thursday, March 08, 2012

Free E-book

Just a reminder that I have a whole collection of stories out for free today: KILLING WAYS. Kindle or Kindle app on your computer or phone will do the trick.

Here are the descriptions in case you're not sure you want to click over to Amazon:

1 - The Most Dangerous Man in New York City: 1969-1977: Winter 1971 is the first Ray Cruz story, and it shows why Ray Cruz fits the description in the title. Ray takes on the Italian mob - all of it - and doesn't do too badly.

2 - Daughters is the second Ray Cruz story. In it, he gets out of jail and his old boss has some work for him. He's not too interested in returning to a life in crime, but then the man he's asked to take care of earns Ray's very violent hate.

3 - Family is my first flash fiction and it involves Viktor Petrenko, ex-Soviet special forces, current new York City tough guy in the rescue of a baby. Don't worry. The child will come out unharmed. Can't say the same for everybody else in the story.

4 – Viktor Petrenko, Bring Them to Their Knees Viktor is in South America when he’s offered a job he can’t refuse – rescuing a little girl kidnapped by a drug cartel. He’s equal to the task of killing, but can he save the girl?

5 – Viktor Petrenko, We Will Make You Beg shows Viktor in Rikers Island Prison in New York awaiting his trial for tax evasion. The prison toughs want to make him choose a side and New York detectives want him to start talking about a dismembered body they found, but all Viktor wants is to be left alone with his memories of the one love of his life - Elena.

6 – Viktor Petrenko, Have You No Mercy? Viktor is sentenced to prison for tax evasion, but a white collar crime puts him in among the country club set for the first time in his life. While the other prisoners hardly know what to make of him, Viktor spends his nights dreaming of the Balkan Wars – the first time he met the love of his life, Elena.

7 – Excerpt from Man of Disaster is a taste of a novel in progress that should be ready for the summer. In it, scientists on the run from paid assassins involve Viktor in their troubles, and when the love of his life, Elena is threatened, Viktor responds the only way he knows how – murderously.

8 – Into the Woods is the story of a man and his psychotic delusions – delusions that seem real to the people they disembowel…

9 – Long Distance is the story of a con man who claims that his non-speaking friend can retrieve the voices that have spoken on your phone lines even if the speaker is dead. One little old lady wants to hear the last word of her now departed husband, but the message he left may not be what she wanted to hear…
10 – Murder at DynaCorp is about the investigation of a death – the head of research firm DynaCorp was found in his office with his heart sitting on top of his chest, but with no incision on his body.

The Free E-book Ploy, Part VI

All day today, the collection of stories KILLING WAYS is a giveaway. This means that if you have a Kindle device or a Kindle app on your phone or computer, you can download these stories for zero dollars and no cents. It doesn't get any less expensive than that. Seriously, you'll burn two calories clicking to the collection and clicking to download it.

An excellent introduction to the range of my short story writing skills. Hardboiled and noir and also some that are a little science-fictiony. What have you got to lose?

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

One Day Only...

Okay, that day is not today. It is tomorrow. What will happen? Another free Kindle offer. You can download my collection KILLING WAYS to your Kindle or Kindle app prepared computer or phone. Your phone. For goodness sake. Who would have thought I'd be able to say you can read my stories on your phone? Anyone actually read stories on phones? Let me know if you do.

Anyway, don't try to get the stories today. Tomorrow they're free. Today they'll cost you a dollar.

Friday, March 02, 2012

Get the Goatsucker Book Free

You might be thinking "What Goatsucker book?" But really, there's only one: LUCY CRUZ AND THE CHUPACABRA KILLINGS. An amateur sleuth novel with a female protagonist... and El Chupacabras. Where else are you going to get that? Who else goes out of his way to bring you a full novel about a beastie that may not even exist*.

Free today for your Kindle and Kindle app.

* Okay, there are plenty of books about beasties that may not exist. Bill Crider wrote one... Sorry.

The Free E-book Ploy, Part V

For today only - grab LUCY CRUZ AND THE CHUPACABRA KILLINGS free for your Kindle or Kindle app. This is a full-length novel. Here's the description from Amazon:

Photojournalist Lucy Cruz, young, beautiful, talented, and poor, spends her nights sitting outside a farm waiting for El Chupacabra - Puerto Rico's legendary livestock killing beast. The group that hired her want only one clear photo of the animal, but what her camera captures is not one animal killing another - it's murder. When she hands police her photos, she's thrown into a fight for her life against a killer who's only getting started.

When the man she loves is nearly murdered, Lucy races to piece together the clues before the killer's aim improves...  

Is it the greatest book ever? Probably not. There's the Bible for one. The Iliad. Oh, and War and Peace...

Is it the greatest novel about Chupacabra? Yes. Unless Bill Crider wrote one...

Note that if you like this novel (and really why wouldn't you?) you'll probably like this collection of stories: THE PRECINCT PUERTO RICO FILES.

Thursday, March 01, 2012

How Can You Listen to Rush Limbaugh?

The last few days I've listened to parts of the Rush Limbaugh Show on my local talk radio station. I've been driving and wanting to hear talk radio - Most often, I listen to NPR. When I'm out driving later in the day I listen to John Tesh sometimes.

I quite like Tesh, but I have to say that Limbaugh confuses me. I know he's quite popular. And I realize his politics aren't mine. Nor is he polite. Disagree with me or not, I hope I'm always polite to you. So I'm not asking about those things.

It seems to me that listening to Rush Limbaugh is a skill one must acquire probably through a fair amount of practice. Here are some of the obstacles I've faced the past few days. First, it seems sometimes that he's either speaking with someone who can't be heard - perhaps a production person who doesn't have a microphone? Perhaps an imaginary friend? He'll pause, say some non sequitur like "yeah, I was just about to say that" then move on. Is there a person in the studio whose microphone isn't plugged in?

Then, is there a real person named "Snerdly"? Mr. Limbaugh references both Snerdly and Mrs. Snerdly from time to time. Again, it usually sounds like a non sequitur to me. "The Obama tax plan is terrible for the nation. (Pause) That's right. (Pause) Snerdly doubted me, but then he was golfing at the time. Mrs. Snerdly said no to the lobster and we had desert..." The name sounds slightly absurd, so I have doubts there is such a person. Even if there is, why would I or anyone else care what they thought on a given issue? No doubt the Snerdlys are wonderful people, but I don't know what their area of expertise is.

Is it just me or does Rush Limbaugh's segues into advertisements a little too subtle? A couple of times I thought he was talking about actual cyber attacks when in fact he was trying to convince me to back up my data using a company he's representing.

And, while I'm on a tear, he does seem to spend an awful lot of time talking about himself, no? The predictions he's made that have come to pass (Should I assume there were no predictions that failed?) the attacks that have been made upon him, how often imitated he is, things of that nature. And he does sometimes seem to make mountains out of molehills. Recently, he played a snippet from one of the president's speech where he said something like "It used to be that if you worked hard you could buy a home..." Mr. Limbaugh seemed to see in this tiny bit that the president thought Americans should never wish for more than a home. I couldn't see it. Perhaps Snerdly could?

Check Back Tomorrow Morning...

Well, the title says just about all, but I'll be giving away an e-book tomorrow. I just haven't figured out which of my titles. One I haven't done before, obviously, but there are several of those. Check back to find out which title.