I MAKES BOOK COVERS (it’s true. I do.)

I do covers. If you want one hit me up. You get print layout and ebook cover.

james AT jamesrtuck DOT com

(replace AT with @ and DOT with . and close the gaps)

On my personal books I did the artwork and took the photos….for FLASHING STEEL FLASHING FIRE I used a stock image I bought……for INTO THE WEIRD the artwork came from Karl Comendador (find him HERE)

If you want to buy any of these click the pictures and you can buy them in ebook and print!

My stuff:

hired gun 5 x 8 jpeg internet special features FLATTENED internetviewable THAT WAY LIES MADNESS FULL COVER 5X8 INTERNET VERSIONand for other people:



NOIR IN THE HEARTLAND (or how me and Springsteen and a bunch of crime-writing badasses are making a difference)

Pay attention to this one, it’s BIG.

I’m in a new anthology. I know, I know, I’m in a LOT of anthologies, but this one is a bit different. This one is a Crime Fiction anthology being put out by Gutter Books and Zelmer Pulp based on the songs of Bruce Springsteen. All the proceeds go to the Bob Woodruff Foundation which helps our veterans, cause dammit that’s what the Boss would want.

You may ask, WHY is this anthology different? Well, first of all it’s cool as hell, but secondly, it has some HUGE names in it. How huge? DENNIS LEHANE huge. HILARY DAVIDSON huge. Peter Farris, Chris F. Holm, Chuck Wendig, Les Edgerton, and Todd Robinson plus a shit-ton of other awesome authors huge.   Look at the cover:


Ain't it loverly?

Ain’t it loverly?



Cover credit. Hells yes.

And you all know my LOVE for crime fiction. I wrote about it HERE.

So what did I write about? My story is based off the song I’m On Fire. I’ve been listening to that damn song and been haunted by it for decades. It’s a spooky, creepy song full of human darkness. The second I was asked to be part of this by my good buddy Brian Panowich I knew I was writing that song. Got the official and wrote that beauty up in one sitting.

It’s dark. Real fucking dark.

It’s set in a place outside Culvert City, my crime fiction town, in a place called Butcher’s Holler and the time is somewhere around the 40’s.

Here’s what Joe Clifford, the editor, said after reading the piece.

Finally started editing the Springsteen antho. Just read your story “I’m on Fire.” Wow. I mean, just wow . . . 

. . . Got some Knockemstiff in there (which is my favorite short story collection), with just enough tongue-in-cheek nod to the Boss. Really, the perfect story for this collection. Well done, sir. Well fucking done.

I’ll take that. So keep your eyes peeled for the announcement of it going on sale and be ready to enjoy some awesome noir, inspired by an awesome singer, for an awesome cause.

And go LIKE the Facebook page for this anthology HERE

and here is a link to the video.

NEW DEACON CHALK BOOK! (or no clever title on this one, just getting the word out)

HARK! all Loyals and True Believers the wait is over!

Now you can have an ALL NEW DEACON BOOK! (sorta)

Please welcome to the family SPECIAL FEATURES: A Deacon Chalk Short Story Collection

Look at it! I MADE that shit. Took the photo, did the layout, that's all MINE!

Look at it! I MADE that shit. Took the photo, did the layout, that’s all MINE!

Okay, let me explain. I look at the three novellas and three novels in the Deacon Chalk series so far as the first season of a really kick ass urban fantasy television show. Like the most kick ass show that ever was.

THAT THING AT THE ZOO, BLOOD AND BULLETS, SPIDER’S LULLABY, BLOOD AND SILVER, CIRCUS OF BLOOD, and BLOOD AND MAGICK.  If you read straight through from the first you get one long story arc. This is the special features disc of that dvd set. (hence the clever title lol) Inside you will find short stories that happen around and between the published titles including DOLLY an all new, never before seen novelette that shows Deacon when he first started monster hunting. It’s Deacon: Year One.
You also get bonus material, character interviews, an essay, some special treats, a cut scene from BLOOD AND MAGICK, and a wrap up story set after BLOOD AND MAGICK that puts an elegant bow on the whole first season.

Damn right.

Some of this material has been published on the interwebs, but all of it has all been polished and a lot of it is new and all of it falls in a line. Plus it will look awesome on your book shelf.

More Deacon is coming. I promise. You will see some short stories, some novellas and a full novel soon because the second season is about to start and let me tell you something, I am upping the ante. You thought the series was wild before, well now it’s going completely off the rails!!!!!!!!!! THIS is the series with more balls than any other urban fantasy series out there and shit’s about to get buck.

But until that happens, buy this.

Here’s the BIG ASS BUY LINK FOR AMAZON which is where you can get it in print and kindle format.

Here is the BIG ASS BUY LINK FOR B&N where you can get it for your nook.

And while you are at it look over at my two other indie published titles:


I drew the art for this as well as doing the layout!

I drew the art for this as well as doing the layout!

Lovecraftian horror at the edge of space! Scary sci fi with a terrific character.





I took the photo and did the layout for this!

I took the photo and did the layout for this!

My crime fiction short story collection. It’s gritty and dark and awesomely violent.



And thank you for all your loving support. It means the world to me and I love you very much.

DIVERSITY UNIVERSITY (or we’re all good)

So there has been much brouhaha about diversity on the interwebs. Lots of fighting. Lots of name calling. Lots of accusations.

I won’t bother to point it out but you can find it.

It got me to thinking about my own work. I’m a straight white male, have been my whole life, don’t think there’s anything wrong with being that. None of those three things are inherently evil.

My main character in the work I am best known for is a straight white male.

I also don’t think there is anything wrong with that.

In the Deacon Chalk series you also have a ton of other characters. Some are white, some are straight, some are males.

A whole lot aren’t. Here’s a rundown.

Kat- Female and Deacon’s right hand.

Tiff- Female and Deacon’s love interest.

Charlotte- Female and Deacon’s Were-spider friend. Also black. Also Bi-sexual and polyamorous.

Boothe- Male and Deacon’s friend, ally, and employee. Were-rabbit. Also Gay,

Josh- Boothe’s partner. Gay and Were-rabbit.

Sister Mary Polycarp- Father Mulcahy’s understudy. Female and black.

Ronnie – Deacon’s friend who is psychically bonded to a cluster of supernatural ghost spiders. Female.

Sophia- Were-dog. Deacon’s friend and ally. Female.

Sasha- owner of Cordite. Deacon’s ally. Post op Transgender.

Katsumi Takakage – Deacon’s ally. A tengu, she is Asian and female.

Maasakki Hatsumi- Katsumi’s father and also a tengu. Asian.

Those are the highlights. Lots of female characters, damaged but strong. Lots of LBGT characters. Multiple ethnicities. Kinda the way it is in the real world.

The thing is, I never wrote these characters as a statement or to fill a quota. They just work as who they are. In fact Boothe is in the whole of book 2 BLOOD AND SILVER and it’s only in the last chapter that his sexual orientation is mentioned because it does not matter to the story. It isn’t the point of the character or his arc through the books.

Most readers never pick up on the fact that Charlotte is black. Seriously. I tell people that and they give me blank face. It’s there in the first description of her after transforming into her human state but still people do not catch it. Which I like because the fact that she is black is NOT the point of the character.

Anyways, this is a bit of a ramble but enjoy the books.


FOR THE LOVE OF COULSON (or how Marvel Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. can not suck)

Alright. This is hard to admit.


Cause The Avengers pretty much came out and rocked my ass, your ass, and your grandma’s ass off. Cause Joss Whedon is a badass who can chew up corporate crap and spit out magic rainbows of love. Cause Clark Gregg is a bonafied Terminator when it comes to playing Agent Coulson, stealing a multi-million dollar movie from some of Hollywood’s biggest players. Cause, dammit, this is the Marvel Universe and the sumbitchin Avengers part of it.

But the really real truth of the matter is that Marvel Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. pretty much blows.

Hey guys, pose like you're gonna kill a franchise.

Hey guys, pose like you’re gonna kill a franchise.

I’m not the first one to say it so put your hair back on. The show is flat and boring. Nobody is engaging. I just don’t give a shit what happens because I know when the show starts that NOTHING is going to happen. There are no consequences. Everybody is exactly who they were when the show started and I feel they will remain that when the show ends. The actors have zero chemistry and even the indomitable Clark Gregg comes off as flat and muted.

Hell, it’s making me kinda hate Agent Coulson.

Yep He's dead.

Yep He’s dead.

So what can be done? I’m glad you asked.

FIRST this show needs to remember that it is a part of the Marvel Universe. We were promised that it would tie in and we have seen almost NONE of that. Yes we got a 30 second appearance of Nick Fury at the end of an episode, but where are the small nods? The inside fanboy references? The freaking copy of the Daily Bugle with SPIDERMAN: HERO OR MENACE? plastered across the front of it. Why hasn’t this team started running into A.I.M. or Hydra or any of the other bad guy organizations out there? You have about 30,000 C and D list heroes and villains you can swing into this show for almost no money. Hell, Thor hits in two weeks, just give me a red and silver streak CGI’ed across the sky and have Coulson comment on it.

It's like I made that shit up.

It’s like I made that shit up.

SECONDLY this show REALLY needs some consequence. Like the episode called EYE SPY. Crap episode. Nothing really happened. Had a glimmer of promise that quickly died. HOWEVER, they could have pulled that episode out by


simply doing one thing at the end. When the girl who they removed the eye from laid down at the end of the show and her eye began to flutter as she fell asleep they should have simply had the one eye left pop open and then do that zzzzt bloodspurt thing that happened to her handler.

BAM! all of a sudden you establish a few things. 1) Coulson’s team (and by extension S.H.I.E.L.D.) can miss things, which creates a helluva lot of tension. 2) It indicates that the person in control of the eye devices has a bigger plan and won’t simply disappear after this one episode. These two things could turn the show in the right direction because these two things are missing.

Truthfully they should call me and I can fix this show.

Here’s what the dealio should be: We all know that Coulson died in The Avengers movie. This Coulson is something else. He may be a Life Model Decoy, he might be a prototype of Ultron or Kang or a Doombot or a brainwiped Skrull or some other thing FROM THE MARVEL UNIVERSE that could possibly become the Vision. Regardless, he isn’t human and S.H.I.E.L.D. is field testing him.

He thinks he’s in charge of this team of misfits but truthfully THEY are handling him because he’s dangerous.

There are two scientists because they are both studying him using their different schools of training. Agent Ward and Agent May are there so that if he doesn’t work out they are the two with the ability to take him down. And the Rising Tide girl is the wildcard and the ONLY one who doesn’t know Coulson’s secret besides him. Of course her gig is to investigate and to mistrust S.H.I.E.L.D. so when tidbits of info that things are not as they seem come out, she is our way of finding out about it. She is our intro character. Once she finds out the truth she drops the knowledge on Coulson and he and her go off the rails.

Then we find out that this whole time they haven’t been working for S.H.I.E.L.D. at all.

Aw yeah son.

Aw yeah son.


Seriously Joss, give me a call.

HELLO LIL’ DEACON (and some pretty vague news)

Okay, so it’s exciting times here.

Yesterday I got a royalty check from Kensington. Whoo HOO! It was a nicely sum, not life-changing by any means, but good. Steak dinner, new laptop, new camera, new violin for the Missus, and savings good. Plus, it showed that BLOOD AND SILVER (Deacon book 2) earned out its advance JUST LIKE BLOOD AND BULLETS DID!

Thank you, really thank you. You are totally wonderful and I really appreciate it. Your support means the absolute world to me.

So where does this leave the Deacon Chalk series? Ongoing. Around September (earlier if I can swing it) you will receive into the world SPECIAL FEATURES which will collect all the Deacon short fiction up to now and some new pieces new to the collection.  I look at the first six releases : THAT THING AT THE ZOO, BLOOD AND BULLETS, SPIDER’S LULLABY, BLOOD AND SILVER, CIRCUS OF BLOOD, AND BLOOD AND MAGICK as the first season of a really, really kick ass urban fantasy show.  SPECIAL FEATURES is exactly what it sounds like. All the short fiction falls before or between those releases with one piece that caps out BLOOD AND MAGICK.  Plus it will have some essays, excerpts, and all kinds of goodies.

Before the end of the year (I am shooting for October/November) You will have OF SILK AND SCALE Deacon Chalk Book 4. This one picks up in a world where everything is different after the events of BLOOD AND MAGICK and if you thought that book was intense, wait until you see what I have in store for you! (Muwah-ha-ha)

So between now and then? Glad you asked.

The WIP: RED RIGHT HAND, a Lovecraftian Urban Fantasy, which is DARK. is one last push to completion and it goes out into the world to find a home. This one is intense. Lots of depth. You will love the heroine, Charlie….she so wonderfully broken and tragic and amazing.

THUNDER ON THE BATTLEFIELD: Volume 1 Sword and Volume 2 Sorcery are nearly done and will be out end of June. I edited it and it is awesome sword and sorcery goodness featuring not one, but TWO stories from me featuring Deacon’s time-flung ancestor Theok. The cover art is coming along wonderfully and as soon as it is locked and loaded I’ll have the actual release date from Seventh Star Press.

I have a Giant Robot novelette due to Mechanoid Press for MECHANOID EARTH and the story is a doozy. Science hella fiction to the max. I go all Shogun Warriors on this one, but you know me, it will have the weird Tuck twist to make it awesome. Should be out in August.

The super secret collaboration project with a NYT Bestselling author is off to find a home. That one will be amazing and I cannot wait to spill those magic beans to you.

I just today sold a series of pulp short novels and a matching anthology to a publisher. It will be majestic and I’ll announce the details as soon as the ink dries on the paperwork but you will have pulpy goodness from me every quarter in 2014. I’m uber excited about this one.

Sent out a project proposal that WILL sell. It will be awesome. But can’t talk about it until sold. But trust me, it will be bigger on the inside.

In talks with an author whose work I admire to collaborate on a novella-length weird western erotica.

Still have the Outlaws of Fiction weird western novella to wrap up.

HOOKERPUNK is still on and should be out soon from Dark Oak Press. My story in it is one of my absolute favorites. I love the story, the characters and the world. More weird west kick ass.

You can buy THE BIG BAD: An Anthology of Evil edited by my friends John Hartness and Emily Leverett, also from Dark Oak Press RIGHT HERE.  My story in it is basically: what if Superman were a dick?

And finally, I WANT to do a kids book for adults starring this guy, so keep your eyes peeled for it.

Lil' Deacon kicking big time monster ass.

Lil’ Deacon kicking big time monster ass.

I DON’T KNOW IF I MISSPOKE OR WAS MISHEARD (I have an opinion on which it were of course)

Sorry, I started editing an anthology that became two anthologies and I looked up and a month was gone. I’m also about to remodel the tattoo shop I own (Family Tradition Tattoo) in Marietta, Ga so lots and lots has kept me away.

Anyway, I’m at JordanCon this weekend. This is a nice con. Real nice. Easy to work, 20 minutes from the house, the staff is super nice, and it’s loaded with folks I like:

Delilah S. Dawson

Alex Hughes

John Hartness

Deb Dixon from Bell Bridge Books

Anthony Taylor

Stuart Jaffe

Jana Oliver

I was on a great panel with Delilah, Alex, John, and Seanan Mcguire today where the topic of what we read came up. We gave our list and I said that I have been concentrating on reading some classic literature and award winners to see if they were worth the hype, ala, Hemmingway (yes), Falkner (yes), and others.

After saying it I felt the need to clarify that I wasn’t putting down genre in any way. I didn’t want anyone in the room to walk away with the impression that I think genre books aren’t “real” literature.

In my clarification the audience mistakenly thought I was putting down one of my co-panelists books which is the exact opposite of what I was saying. Now I’m not slick, but I don’t often misspeak (and I am never shy about an opinion) but my point that a good book is a good fucking book no matter where the publisher puts it and to be prejudiced by genre is dumb and limits you and no one else.

One of my literary heroes is Robert E. Howard. I have made no secret to that. He’s considered a hack by the wide, wide literary world. He wrote pulp, a LOT of it. He wrote about swords and barbarians and wizards and boxers and pictish kings and magic.

He also wrote about destiny, morality, love, valor, and metaphysical concepts such as genetic memory, immortality, reincarnation, and others. His wordcraft equals the greats of literature and I place him next to Cormac McCarthy.

Kurt Vonnegut is now considered literature, but trust me, he wrote science fiction and speculative fiction. The literati loves Neil Gaimen but he writes magical realism. It’s all genre dammit. Both of them are on the level of Harlan Ellison and the literati turns a nose up at him.

Genre is real writing folks. It just is. It’s not all vampire smooches and shit blowing up.

Go click the links in this blog if you don’t believe me. Order some books. Get your read on.