Saturday, March 27, 2010


Can a magazine change your life?
Arguably, one changed mine.
Few years back, I was losing the faith on fiction writing and kind of drifted away from it for a time.
On a whim, I decided to try and score an interview with James Ellroy who was then touring for THE COLD SIX THOUSAND.
It was spring of 2001...a different world in some ways.
I heard about this new magazine called Crime Factory...made pitch to the man behind it, David Honeybone, to give him a version of the Ellroy article. He accepted and shot back a wish list of other writers he'd love to have interviewed.
It went like that. The Factory led me back to crime fiction...kind of kick-started me writing my own stuff again.
I wrote a review or two, gave Crime Factory — an Australian-based, slick crime magazine — a slew of author interviews.
And I had this running correspondence with David. One day, I got a note: "Find everything you can by Ken Bruen, now. He's the real thing."
It was the first time I'd heard that name.
Couple of months later, another note: "Bruen's coming to New York. Try and get to him."
That took some effort. Some folks in his own publishing house were too new to Bruen to know what they had on their hands. But I got the interview and put the first article out there in the American press about the Pope of Galway Bay.
At some point, as too often happens with labors of love that become real work, David made the decision to close down the Factory. It was an understandable, if bittersweet, choice.
I went on my way...eventually sold a novel.
The Factory remained a great memory.
Then, this guy in Arizona named Rawson, and some intrepid associates, got this hankering to reopen the Factory...grease the cogs, clear out the debris and sweep off the cobwebs.
Crimefactory, v.2, is now up and running, and issue 2 is freshly available in a variety of media.
Somewhere in there, among the short fiction pieces and appreciations of carnival noir kingpin Bill Gresham (a personal favorite I wrote about late last year for Crimespree), is an interview Charlie Stella and me conducted with one another. I'm talking about PRINT THE LEGEND. Charlie's talking about his new one — his first historical crime novel and a 2010 must-read.
You can check out the new issue of Crime Factory here.

There's still a couple of days to win a signed copy of the first edition of PRINT THE LEGEND over at Lesa's Book critiques. Details here.
I'll be announcing another contest later this evening that will give you chance to win a signed copy of the hardcover edition of ROGUE MALES. To my memory, I've never signed a hardcover of that particular book, so this will be rarity in the extreme.

The Nerd of Noir gives a decidedly blue thumbs-up to PRINT THE LEGEND over at Spinetingler Magazine. Definitely not a workplace friendly take on the novel. He ends his review hoping for a Hemingway-free next book. Well...
As noted earlier this week, what I've been talking up as the next novel, a World War II Lassiter told in HEAD GAMES-like first-person POV, has been pushed back.

It's a decision I initiated and supported.
The next novel will cast back to February 1924 and Left Bank Paris. Unlike the decades jumping that occurs in the first three novels, this one unfolds in seven consecutive days in a Paris winter. It's the book I wrote immediately after TOROS & TORSOS and I view those two as companion novels.
So, sorry, Nerd, but Hemingway is in that book as Lassiter's sidekick (the last book in which Hemingway appears). But this next one is very Hector-centric. It's the novel in which we see Hector become Hector and the writer we've come to know. Gertrude Stein, Alice B. Toklas, Ford Maddox Ford, Syliva Beach, Crowley. Blood cults and and treacherously triangular affairs.
And a certain British mystery writer named Quartermain first introduced in a short story called "The Last Interview."
That novel's coming winter 2011.
And, because I'm seemingly feeling in a contest-y mood, a copy of the TOROS & TORSOS limited hardcover edition to the first person who correctly guesses the title of Lassiter #4. Hint: It's a turn of phrase that's become strongly associated with Hector.


  1. We're proud to have you be apart of Crimefactory's new incarnation, Craig. Our only hope is to live up to the original

  2. Hi Craig
    Nice post.
    Funny how things turn out. A friend of my wife who was a journalist in London, had tipped me off about Ken. I'd also read an article about him in the old-format Crime Time mag. and then I just dropped him an email and one thing led to another...

  3. Dave:
    I still nurse fond memories of those days and owe you a large debt for the chance to participate. Every once in a while, I break out the print editions and browse back through them. A lot of prescient stuff between those pages, looking back.
    Hope you and yours are quite well.
    All best,