Short Story Spotlight
Remember how excited I was about the impending release of the Beat to a Pulp anthology a few weeks back? The book is out now, and it’s a beaut. BEAT TO A PULP: ROUND ONE was edited by David Cranmer and Elaine Ash, with a foreword by Bill Crider, and stories by some fiercely talented writers: Ed Gorman, Patti Abbott, Chris F. Holm, Charles Ardai, Sophie Littlefield, Glenn Gray, Jedidiah Ayres… actually, every story in this collection is a winner. (My “Insatiable,” which won the 2010 Spinetingler Award for best short story, is also in there.) In case you need any more convincing, Cullen Gallagher‘s essay “A History of Pulp” closes the anthology.
Speaking of Chris F. Holm, he’s just released his own short-story collection, 8 POUNDS, which is available via Kindle. My first reaction when I saw this was “Damn! I don’t have a Kindle!” It turned out that wasn’t a problem; thanks to the Kindle app, which is available for various computers and handheld devices, I was able to download 8 POUNDS without a hitch. I’d already read all but two of the stories in the collection, but at a mere 99 cents, it would still be a steal if I’d read them all. Chris’s stories are a joy to read (also: very scary), and if you haven’t encountered his work before — he’s been in Ellery Queen, Alfred Hitchcock, Thuglit, and Needle, to name a few — now’s the time to get acquainted.
One more anthology I’m excited about: DISCOUNT NOIR, edited by Patti Abbott and Steve Weddle. Inspired by a flash fiction challenge a few months ago, this collection from Untreed Reads features stories by Dave Zeltersman, Keith Rawson, Sandra Seamans, Eric Beeter, Kyle Minor, Kathleen Ryan, Kieran Shea, Cormac Brown, Jay Stringer… okay, I could go on and on. You know you want it.
Finally, while I’m on the subject of short stories, I’m taking part in Christopher Grant‘s 600-to-700 challenge over at A Twist of Noir. I’m not sure what I was thinking, given that I’ve never written flash fiction before, but my 678-word story, “Sorry Bastard” will be up in a couple of weeks. This is the first time I’ve been inclined to write a second story with the same main character. If you’ve read “Cheap Bastard,” published by Spinetingler in March, you’ve already encountered Don. I have a feeling he may be back again after this.