Posts Tagged ‘Triple Play’

South Carolina Snaps / Quarry for $1.99

Tuesday, May 1st, 2012

NEWS FLASH: QUARRY and QUARRY’S VOTE will be $1.99 on Kindle for 48 hours! First sale price on Quarry e-books.

Quarry
QUARRY Kindle $1.99
Quarry's Vote
QUARRY’S VOTE Kindle $1.99

This week my update will be a short one, because (a) I just finished writing eight blog entries in support of LADY, GO DIE! (links will be posted), and (b) I am providing a few pictures from our recent South Carolina trip for Mickey’s induction into the SC author’s hall of fame.

But I do need to mention that ANTIQUES DISPOSAL, the new hardcover, is out even as I type this, as is the mass-market paperback edition of ANTIQUES KNOCK-OFF.

Also, the Perfect Crime trade paperbacks (with new after words) of the Nolan series are available now or soon will be. They are FLY PAPER, HUSH MONEY, HARD CASH, SCRATCH FEVER, SPREE and MOURN THE LIVING. Actually, the MOURN after word is recycled from the Five Star edition. Otherwise, new stuff.

There’s a nice review here of the new Heller novella collection, TRIPLE PLAY.

And a really nice review of ANTIQUES DISPOSAL from the perceptive Craig Clarke can be found here.

Here’s a fun review of BYE BYE, BABY.

And a very nice recommendation for LADY, GO DIE! right here.

Left to right: Atlantic Ocean, MAC, Atlantic Ocean.

Left to right: MAC, Bogie pretending to be Hammer, Jim Traylor.

MAC and Jane Spillane

MAC sportsman

Potential Crusin’ venue?

M.A.C.

Your Southern Correspondent

Tuesday, April 24th, 2012

As I write this, I’m in a Holiday Inn Express in Murrell’s Inlet, South Carolina, shacked up with a great-looking blonde. That the blonde in question is my wife Barb only takes the slightest bit of the fun out of it.

We are here for one of our periodic meetings with Jane Spillane, Mickey’s lovely, energetic widow. We today went over the inventory of unpublished Spillane material, discussing what will be doing when the six substantial Hammer manuscripts have all been completed and published. Hint: there are three more, less substantial but very interesting Hammer manuscripts beyond the initial six. Plus there are five more shorter fragments that will make short stories (an eventual Hammer short story collection is planned).

What brought us here, however, was to participate in the induction of Mickey Spillane into the South Caroline Academy of Authors – their Hall of Fame. Mickey, of course, would have recoiled at being termed an “author,” and would have informed one and all that he was a writer. The difference between authors and writers? Writers make money.

TRIPLE PLAY was published last week, and I wrote a brief blog post about it here.

And here’s a cool review of WAR OF THE WORLDS MURDER.

Have I mentioned that AmazonEncore will be bringing out all six “disaster” mysteries in new editions (and on e-book)?

M.A.C.

When I’m 64

Tuesday, March 6th, 2012

Davy Jones of the Monkees died at 66 the other day. One of the major Monkees fan clubs is based in Muscatine, and my band Crusin’ contributed a song (“Little Bit Me, Little Bit You”) to a Monkees tribute CD in the early ‘90s (Bobby Hart did the liner notes). In my first year of college, I loved the Monkees – their albums remain surprisingly strong – and my band (then called the Daybreakers) did tons of their stuff. So the passing of Davy Jones gives me more than twinge of melancholy, not to mention paranoia, since I turned 64 on March 3rd.

On my birthday, I played a band job with the current, very strong Crusin’ line-up at a particularly hip venue (a blues club in Bettendorf called the Muddy Waters) and we received a warm welcome to say the least. Rock ‘n’ roll definitely happened (Crusin’ is myself, guitarist Jim Van Winkle, bass player Brian Van Winkle, and drummer Steve Kundel). And we pulled “I’m a Believer” out of our nether regions by way of tribute to Davy. Word got around that it was my birthday, and somebody did the math and figured out I was 64. It’s nice that a lot of people seemed to find it tough to believe that I was that age, but nonetheless I am.

One thing I’ve noticed about other bands who play ‘60s material (and we play originals and early ‘70s and other things we feel like) is that they tend to be either sleepy (literally sitting down on the job) or kitschy (going all amateur-night Sha Na Na). On the other hand, our approach remains the same balls-to-the-wall garage band rock we always specialized in, although it gets ballsier when the audience is like the one at the Muddy Waters.

While I physically on occasion do feel like 64 (or older), my attitudes haven’t changed much. I’m not going to wear a baseball cap on stage and sit down while I play keyboards. I’m not going to soften my sex and violence (even when an editor requests it) or tone down the dumb jokes or change in any way my approach, other than to improve whenever possible. I’m not slowing down my productivity if for no other reason than time is in fact running out, and I still have stories to tell. I am not going gently into this good night. I am going fucking screaming.

Triple Play

I get a certain amount of shit about living in Iowa – about having stayed in Iowa. This often comes from people who haven’t accomplished a fraction of what I have in various facets of show business. I have always lived a fairly low-key life – minimal drinking, no smoking – and remain married to the same beautiful woman after forty-some years. And she is beautiful, and incredibly thoughtful. Who else but Barb would spend the day after my birthday going to a matinee with me called “Project X” (great movie, and if you don’t think so, you are 64) (at least) about a shy kid’s birthday bash that turns into a neighborhood apocalypse. Barb spent all weekend making sure this birthday (which sucks – you don’t even qualify for the senior discount at 64, or your Social Security check) was fun and not traumatic.

Barb, by the way, is the cover girl on the upcoming TRIPLE PLAY, the Nate Heller novella collection coming out in April. I’ve always thought she looks like Marilyn Monroe, and I submitted a picture of her to Amazon Encore from the early ‘90s that I thought might work. See for yourself.

* * *

There were several nice mentions of my birthday on the net this past week. Check this one out, if you’re a Ms. Tree fan.

A blogger did a piece on Sadie Hawkins Day that lambasted Al Capp, and I responded. That response was named comment of the day.

Nathan Heller and I got some nice local love from a Cedar Rapids writer.

The Raymond Chandler centennial short-story collection got written up, with special mention of my story. I commented, because an assumption had been made about the story, which has appeared with both Marlowe and Nate Heller as its protagonist, that needed correcting.

Here’s a nice “desert island” reading list of graphic novels where ROAD TO PERDITION ranks number three.

Another blogger has an interesting take on BYE BYE, BABY, using it as starting point for his own MM research.

This coming week I will be working on ANTIQUES CHOP, Barb having just wrapped up her draft.

M.A.C.

Heller of a Week

Tuesday, June 14th, 2011

I’ve made passing references to the Nate Heller backlist coming back into print, but now it’s official. AmazonEncore has put out a press release on upcoming titles, and this paragraph should be of interest:

“Award-winning author Max Allan Collins’ Chicago Lightning: The Collected Nathan Heller Short Stories, to be published by Thomas & Mercer on October 4, features Chicago PI Nathan Heller as the narrator of thirteen crime stories based on real cases from the 1930s and 1940s. Known for his graphic novel, Road to Perdition, the basis of the Academy Award-winning film starring Tom Hanks and Paul Newman, Max Allan Collins is a recipient of the Private Eye Writers of America lifetime achievement award, the Eye, and is the writer and director of five feature films and two documentaries. Leading up to the publication of Chicago Lightning, AmazonEncore will re-release twelve other Nathan Heller books in August.”

Every one of the previous Heller novels (from TRUE DETECTIVE through CHICAGO CONFIDENTIAL) will be reprinted in handsome, uniform trade paperback editions as well as e-books. CHICAGO LIGHTNING and the forthcoming TRIPLE PLAY are two new collections that take the place of (and expand upon) the previous Heller collections, DYING IN THE POSTWAR WORLD and KISSES OF DEATH. CHICAGO LIGHTNING is all the short stories thus far (including several never before collected) and TRIPLE PLAY will include the three Heller novellas-to-date (“Dying in the Postwar World,” “Kisses of Death,” and “Strike Zone”).

Obviously I am thrilled to have Heller climb back into print, timed to support and cross-promote the new Heller novels from Forge.

Speaking of which – and is very big news indeed – BYE BYE, BABY has received a starred PW review. Here it is:

“Set in 1962, Collins’s excellent 13th novel featuring Chicago PI Nate Heller (last seen in 2002’s Chicago Confidential) finds Heller–who’s investigated such high-profile crimes as the Lindbergh kidnapping and Huey Long’s assassination–looking into the death of Hollywood icon Marilyn Monroe. The book’s first half covers the movie star’s last two months, as she tries to deal with attacks on many fronts–by the movie studio that fired her; by her abusive ex-husband, Joe DiMaggio; and by the Kennedys. By the time a drug overdose claims her, there’s no shortage of people who wanted her dead. Heller, Monroe’s sometime lover, who refuses to buy the official line that she committed suicide, steps on powerful toes with his usual tenacity and stubbornness to reach the truth. Collins convincingly portrays the real-life players in the drama, who include Jimmy Hoffa and Frank Sinatra. Readers with a taste for hard-boiled roman à clef will hope that more Heller is in the offing. (Aug.)”

Chicago Lightning

Mike Hammer remains very much in the public eye. An amusing review of KISS HER GOODBYE from AV Club is getting a lot of web distribution. Once again, the reviewer spends most of his time apologizing for liking the novel. But by the end he grudgingly, embarrassedly admits he did enjoy it (and bestows a B grade, not at all bad for the snarky AV Club). You may wish to read some of the comments, which are often hilarious in their idiocy (one guy doesn’t read my stuff because I look like a “nerd” in my author photos) and the knee-jerk political correctness rants that Spillane, even deceased, even in the 21st Century, can still inspire. Also, mention Spillane and “experts” will announce a predictable list of other hardboiled writers you should be reading instead.

This web review of KISS HER GOODBYE is fun and right on the money. Worth checking out.

So is this brief but lovely review of the audio, THE NEW ADVENTURES OF MIKE HAMMER: ENCORE FOR MURDER.

Here’s a nice review of the new Criterion Blu-ray of KISS ME DEADLY. I have an advance copy and it’s a lovely package, and the film looks great. So, I say unblushingly, does my new updated cut of the documentary, MIKE HAMMER’S MICKEY SPILLANE, there as a bonus feature. I am grateful to Criterion for including it, because the sharp-looking booklet and some of the other features (notably the disappointing commentary) make the usual uniformed, sloppy, prejudiced comments about the original material. Constantly we’re told director Aldrich and screenwriter Bezzerides just “threw the novel away.” In fact, Bezzerides used Mickey’s basic plot, most of the characters (including their names), many memorable sequences (the opening of the film, for example, and the death of mobster Carl Evello) and even the fiery ending is a variation on Mickey’s. For Hollywood of the period, it’s quite faithful to its source, and evokes the surrealistic, fever-dream feel of early Hammer uncannily. Commentators continually talk about Hammer as if the books are predominantly about the P.I. taking on “Commies” (the only book of the first impactful six that does so is ONE LONELY NIGHT – a book in which SPOILER ALERT the bad guy turns out to be a thinly disguised Joe McCarthy). END SPOILER ALERT. Director Alex Cox has a piece where he’s enthusiastic about the film, but makes many dubious observations, including that Hammer is stupid in the novel and even more stupid in the film. At least Cox seems to have skimmed the book, which is more than most of the commentators have.

Finally, I recently did a little project with my frequent collaborator, actor Mike Cornelison (Pat Chambers on THE LITTLE DEATH and ENCORE FOR MURDER, and narrator of my Spillane documentary). It was a competition to write and produce a short play in just under a week. I hope to have a You Tube link to the production, called “Alley Cats,” soon.

In the meantime, here’s how we did:

The Judge’s Choice Award for night of competition, Friday, June 10, 2011.

This award signifies that the three-judge panel found “Alley Cats” the best theatrical presentation among the nine shows presented that night. That which most represented the spirit of the 711 competition, created the most engaging theatrical experience and adhered most closely to the rules of the game.

In addition, “Alley Cats” received the “Technical Excellence” award, which is voted by the technical staff of the 711 Project, and given to that production that shows the clearest vision, best use of lighting, sound and design and most concise and effective communication of their needs to the technical staff.

“Team Caligula,” which presented “Alley Cats,” is made up of Max Allan Collins (playwright), Michael Cornelison (director/actor), Nick Cornelison (producer/actor) and Jared Hammer (actor).

M.A.C.