DAMN JOE R. LANSDALE, JUST . . . DAMN (or how my mind got blown)

With the Sundance show a comin‘ I’ve been filling in the gaps of my Hap and Leonard reading cause I haven’t gotten the whole series through. Not for lack of liking, just for picking them up randomly. So I’ve been reading BAD CHILI by Joe R. Lansdale.

It’s good. I like Hap and I like Leonard. They ride each others asses like friends do. They get in weird capers that result in mucho violence and I like that as well.

So the other day I was working at the tattoo shop and I took a break, went outside on a gorgeous day, sat in a chair and lit up a Nick’s Sticks cigar and read toward the end of the book.

badchili cigar

On page 280 Joe Lansdale blew my damn mind.

There’s a thing that happens, no I won’t tell you what it is, you either already know or you haven’t read it yet so no spoilers. Needless to say a thing occurs and Hap decides he is going to go kill someone.

That scene, his decision to do the killing and his action as a result was some of the most gripping writing I’ve read in a long time. I write books about violent men. I write books about people choosing to kill other people. Reading Lansdale’s version of thing s I have written was like being slapped with my own inadequacies. It was humbling. Not often does something happen in a book that makes me say, out loud, “damn”.

Two mega thumbs up for this book.

hap bad chili




THE POWER OF A SCANDAL (or my review of Jigsaw Youth)

Tiffany Scandal is a tuff chick.

I picked up her book JIGSAW YOUTH from Ladybox Books and read it quickly. It’s on the shorter side but it’s also just that damn compelling.

This is the story of Ella, a lesbian of Chicana descent, who finds her self both isolated and accepted. The story is disjointed, appearing in vignettes instead of a straight narrative and that adds depth to the texture of the story. This is a life and sometimes life can get messy.

It’s got a beauty to it and a power and by the end you feel as if you have shared something meaningful.

Full to the brim with emotion that paint a dark but not bleak portrait. The writing is both raw and delicate, somehow punching you in the gut and kissing you on the forehead.¬† Scandal’s voice is definitely noir, harkening to some of the tough guys in the genre, Bukowski, Thompson, and Carver would have had her in their drinking club, but her language and story have a literary heft to them that keeps you turning the pages.

I’ll be checking out more of her work and recommend you do as well.

jigsaw youth



VON TUCK IS THE MAN (or some pictures for your consumption)

So, with the royalty check one of the things I bought was a new camera. Here is what I have been doing with it ūüôā

Needless to say, all pictures are mine. Copyright James R. Tuck. See that big name across them? That’s my photography handle. Respect it.

WM LIZ 7 WM CASH Adrienne 1 WM flashracktop WM HULAHOOP 2 wm shelby 3 WM SHELBY BACK

TA HELL WITH A MASS MARKET (my opinion as a reader on why I love Trade Paperbacks)

I have a ton of books.

I don’t know how much they actually weigh, but me and the Missus have a book buying problem. Actually, the phraseology on that is wrong. We have NO problem buying books. Ignore the fact that my TBR pile numbers near 100. Ignore also the fact that there are easily 20 current releases I have NOT purchased simply because I know when I do I will immediately read them thus pushing my TBR pile even further int he background. (Yes, I’m looking at you COLD DAYS by Jim Butcher. Fuck you, don’t make me feel guilty for not bathing in your sweet sweet cotton-candy scented literature. I’ll get to you. I will. I PROMISE. It is inevitable.)

Where was I?

Oh yeah, books.

Here is a pic of our new, grown folks books shelves and our library at the house.

ALL the books on the left two shelves are mine.

ALL the books on the left two shelves are mine.


So earlier I was thinking about books. The physical form of the book. I decided that I am totally over mass market paperbacks. I much prefer the size of a trade paperback.

Mass market paperbacks are now the cats of the publishing world in my opinion.

Now I’ll still buy a mass market, hell I bought one last night (SHARP by my good friend Alex Hughes). But if I can, I’m buying trades from now on.

Book four of the Deacon Chalk series will be trade paperback size.

My double anthology of sword and sorcery stories that I edited for Seventh Star press will be trade paperback size.

I’m actually going to push for any book released by me to be automatically in trade paperback size. I may not get it for everything, but it’s what I want.

They are easier to hold, easier to read, and easier to shelve. They are narrower, so you can fit more on a shelf, and with a mass market, you lose the 3-4 inch difference in dead space between the top of the book and the bottom of the shelf above it.

This post has no real merit. It was just a musing I thought I would indulge because, hey, fuck it, it’s my internet too.

So what’s your choice or opinion on this hot-button issue?


Hello Loyals and True Believers. I hope you are well. I love you all and it is good to see you again.

I have many writer friends and occasionally they post up what they are doing and how it is going so I figured I would do the same.
I am going to list things by project name, brief description, and then the status of the project.
So here goes:

RED RIGHT HAND:¬† Charlie, a survivor of something terrible, gets dragged into a mad hunt for elder gods who are breaking their prison on the other side of the universe and coming to our world.¬† Her hunting partners are Brad and The Crawling Chaos, Nyarlathotep himself. It’s dark urban fantasy based out of the Lovecraft Mythos and I freaking love the way it is going. Rough sketched for 3 books.¬† STATUS: 25% complete on first draft. I WILL finish the first draft over November.

THE CLOCKWORK COURTESAN:¬† Tesla’s nephew and a Clockwork girl in an action adventure/steampunk tale that has dirigibles, clockwork people, magic, Pinkerton Agents, mechanikal cyborgs, and a lot of romance. STATUS: 25% done but on hold. I think the story needs to gestate a little bit longer.

SUPER SEKRIT COLLABORATION WITH A NYT BESTSELLING AUTHOR: Holy crap y’all. I am so damn excited about this one I can barely keep it in…but I have to so no details except to say that this is an urban fantasy take on a classic tale, set in medieval times, and done in a totally fresh and new way. My collaborator is almost got her schedule clear (one more week) and then we start. IT IS GONNA ROCK!¬† STATUS: Character sheets done, outline 90% done.

THUNDER ON THE BATTLEFIELD ANTHOLOGY: I get to try my hand at editing! This is the sword and sorcery antho from Seventh Star Press that will hit 2nd quarter of 2013. The deadline isn’t for another 3 months but I have been getting some truly awesome submissions and it will be a terrific collection of heroic fantasy.¬† STATUS: Pre-selecting the submissions for acceptance.

WEIRD WESTERN ANTHOLOGY:  I am now a proud member of The Outlaws Of Fiction with Brady Allen, D.A. Adams, and Steven Shrewsbury. We are the Four Horsemen of the Writer-pocalypse. We are joining forces to compile 4 novellas (one each) for a collection. It will be a weird western theme and it is gonna rock. My story stars Caleb Donner, a survivor of the Donner Party Massacre who wanders the west as a pariah and a hired gun. He gets into some crazy stuff. We will be pitching a publisher in a few months. STATUS: Planning stage, but my story is outlined and in the que to be written. (20,000 words should be a 2 week turnaround, written and revised)
* check out the Outlaws Of Fiction on our BLOG and our FACEBOOK PAGE

THAT WAY LIES MADNESS: This is written and ready to roll. It’s the Lovecraft Mythos in space. It’s dark, spooky, and straight space horror. I love it. I love the world, I love the voice, I love the main character. I have the cover ready (art by me) and the rights to “He Stopped Loving Her Today” reverted in October so I am including it as a backup story. I am also including interior art drawn by me.¬† This one will available in both e-book and print. ¬† STATUS: I have some interior art pieces to draw, after that I just lay it out and pub it. I plan to have this done by end of month also.

HE STOPPED LOVING HER TODAY COMIC BOOK SCRIPT: I am writing a comic book script based on my zombie love story as a way to pitch comic book companies to allow me to write for them. I LOVE comic books. I’ve been a fanboy since I was a kid and now the industry is looking for novel writers to write for them so I am getting this written as a sample script. Of course if someone wants to make it a comic book then I am totally game.¬† STATUS: 33% done. Also will be finished by months end.


So there you go. That is what I am doing. Along with doing some work on the tattoo shop to prepare for 2013. Its been open for near 4 years so its time for some newness. So far it is all on track for 2013 to rock your face off.

I GOT A NEW OFFICE (oh hell yeah)

Yep. The Daughter moved out and I have turned her room into my office. I miss her, but I do like having a place with a big monitor and no internet to write in. Her bed is still there because, thankfully, she does come home to visit and we need a place where guests could, theoretically, stay overnight.

Now we are having a writer’s group Halloween party soon, so I will will post up a full on video tour of the office then, but for now I want to show you my desk.

Yep. I got my Boondock Saints Poster, one of three Frank Frazetta prints, a bunch of books from Conan to Mack Bolan, Wally Wood’s PANELS THAT ALWAYS WORK print, a rosary, a framed hotrod magazine, a crapton of action figures, and my Conan comic screen saver on my big piss off monitor.

I love it.

Here’s a closer shot of how it looks when I look up from the monitor while writing and a list of the figures you see.

From the left:

Hellboy vinyl statue, some zombie viking figure that I am sure is a McFarlane toy, Svadun and Belit (Queen of the Black Coast) from the Conan action figure line from McFarlane with Viking Spawn looking down from above (I have had that figure for near twenty years!),  Conan himself with a big ass hammer, Cthulhu all gnarly looking, Ash with chainsaw and boomstick in the upper corner, and finally My Little Cthulhu with screaming victims.

This is where I go to send wordcount to Valhalla.

YOU CAN BE WHERE I WILL BE (making it easy for fans and stalkers lol)

Dearly Beloved, 
We are gathered here today, to join two awesome things in a state of increased awesomeness.
Today, we’re bringing together an author/reader mini-con, and the chance to WIN YOUR WAY IN FOR FREE!
That’s right, ladies and gentlemen… starting today, you will all have 7 days to hop around from author to author, blogger to blogger, and enter at every stop to win one of 3 FREE REGISTRATIONS to¬†Olde City, New Blood, the¬†upcoming urban fantasy/paranormal romance mini-con in St. Augustine, FL next February.
You can check out the official website for the complete list of Featured Authors (I’ll give you a hint… one of them is ME!!) and Featured Bloggers. There’s also¬†a main contest post with all the participating authors, bloggers, and dates for the contest. It’s super easy.¬†Visit each of the spotlight blog¬†posts and author websites listed, fill out the Rafflecopter link on each one (one entry PER POST, not per day… and yes, they will be checking), and POOF, multiple entries to WIN!!
The prize is one of 3 FREE REGISTRATIONS to see me and about 49 other authors on the sunny beaches of St. Augustine, Florida, from Feb 8th-10, 2013. We’re going to be doing panels, readings, meet & greets, and just generally having a fun weekend with¬†our incredible¬†fans!! Please keep in mind, if you win, you’ll have to cover your own travel and hotel expenses, but your ticket into the party will be on Olde City, New Blood!!!
The contest runs from September 30th – October 6th, and the 3 winners will be announced on September 7th. Don’t forget to click the Rafflecopter link below before you hop off to check out the rest of the contest posts!! Good Luck, everyone!! I hope to see you ALL in Florida this February!!