Sunday, July 27, 2014

LEE GOLDBERG EXPLAINES IT ALL!

LEE GOLDBERG EXPLAINES IT ALL (WITH APOLOGIES TO CLARISSA)!

My writing buddy and mentor Lee Goldberg has risen to great heights with not only in his television writing career and with his Diagnosis Murder and Monk series, but has recently stormed the bestseller list with his new Fox and O'Hare series (written with Janet Evonovich).

Always the brilliant entrepreneur, Lee is also one of the founders of the newly minted Brash Books imprint (bringing back a wonderful mix of retro mysteries, which have been out-of-print far too long).  He has also produced a series of short videos (links below) about his books and his writing process...

The Story Behind WATCH ME DIE
 

The Story Behind McGRAVE
 

The Story Behind FAST TRACK
 

 

 

 

 
 
 
Check them out.  I think you'll find them both entertaining and enlightening ...

Friday, July 25, 2014

PUSHING AND SHOVING!

PUSHING AND SHOVING!

NATHAN WALPOW ON WRITING FIGHT CARD: PUSH

I’ve been an on-again-off-again wrestling fan since I was a teenager. There was a period in the ’60s when my father and I watched the WWWF on TV every week. Those were the days of Bruno Sammartino and Bobo Brazil and Killer Kowalski, when no one but the hillbillies wore anything but wrestling tights. I picked it up again in the late ’80s and early to mid-’90s, the days of Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage and Rowdy Roddy Piper. By the end of this period, many of the wrestlers had wacky costumes and there were gimmicks galore. The WWWF had turned into the WWF, and there was more of a circus atmosphere, and it had taken another step away from any pretense of reality.

Even today, when I run across a card on TV (it’s the WWE now), more often than not I stop channel hopping to see what’s going on. I don’t know much about anybody but the Undertaker, but I still enjoy the whole soap opera, the turns to and from the dark side, the magnitude of the mythology they’ve built. And that some things never change – for instance, the referees are as clueless as ever.

Shortly before the turn of the century, I saw a call for submissions for an anthology of wrestling-related horror stories. I kicked out a story called Push Comes to Shove, which involved a jobber – a guy who’s there solely to lose to a current or upcoming superstar – running across a new wrestler who was making stuff a little more real than it should have been. By the time I got around to sending the story in, the market was already closed. I tried to place it a couple more times, but, as is customary with my writing, it was a little too much this and not enough that for most markets, and I packed it away in my electronic trunk.

Not long after, my local Sisters in Crime chapter put out a call for stories for a book of members’ work. I dusted off Push Comes to Shove and discovered it consisted of four thousand words of good story and a thousand of darlings to be killed. I made the cuts and the editors liked what was left. The book came out in 2000, published by Ugly Town, the Los Angeles small press that later published my third and fourth Joe Portugal novels.

One day, I came back from some mystery convention or other and discovered an email from Otto Penzler, the overall editor of the Best American Mystery Stories series. He’d included Push Comes to Shove in the first cut of the 2001 edition, and that year’s editor selected it for the book. This was none other than Lawrence Block, one of my favorite crime fiction authors. So, not long afterward, there I was on the bookstore shelves, in a volume with Joyce Carol Oates.

That was it for a while, and then I ran into Paul Bishop at an event for Stark Raving Press, a new electronic publishing company for whom we were both writing novellas. We’d worked together in the local Mystery Writers of America chapter some years earlier, but I hadn’t seen him in quite a while. He told me about Fight Card, with its preponderance of boxing novellas, but with mixed martial arts and luchadors on the way. Wheels spun in my head, but only for a moment, and I blurted out, “I’ve got this wrestling story, blah, blah, blah, what if I expanded it into a novella?”

Paul said send him the story, and I did, and he liked it, and expansion began. I had the luxury of filling in more of the unnamed protagonist’s backstory, his life with his girlfriend, his training, what he did during the long hours between matches at TV tapings. I added an ex-wrestler uncle and a stint in Iraq and a dash of PTSD. I added some dimension to the bad guy. I was able to make my hero more proactive and less simply carried along by events. The whole thing took a week of writing time…it was one of those stories that, to use the old cliché, wrote itself, as if it had always wanted to grow and flourish.

I decided to shorten the title to simply The Push, then further cut it to Push. It seemed to work better with both the length and with the Fight Card gestalt – plus the longer title remains forever reserved for the short story that got the first (and still, let’s face it, the only) recognition any of my work has received.

One reason I'm fond of this tale is its protagonist is very different from the urban neurotics who usually populate my work. He’s smart enough, but he’s basically a simple guy with a simple life and a simple loyalty to those he loves. Just a guy faced with a big problem while trying to do his job.

When I wrote Push Comes to Shove, I thought Thumper’s costume and persona might be a little over the top, but subsequent developments in the WWF proved me wrong. And though they’ve dialed back on the weirdness a little since then, I like to think  Thumper’s Central States Wrestling career would have made him a natural fit for later WWWF/WWF/WWE greatness, if only…but that would be telling.

FIGHT CARD: PUSH

You’re a jobber. You make your living by losing in the wrestling ring. You’re a good wrestler, but promoters don’t think you have what it takes to become a superstar. Then Thumper shows up. Big and strong, with a bunny-rabbit gimmick and fans eating out of his hand. His finishing move is called The Thump, and most guys don’t get up from it on their own.

One night, Thumper puts his opponent in the hospital. Not a big deal. Sure, the outcome of a wrestling match is fake. But the bumps in the ring can be all too real. Sometimes you get hurt. Part of the territory.

Then it happens again. Only this time, the guy who got ‘thumped’ is tossed into a car like a sack of potatoes. Lou Boone, the promoter who runs Central States Wrestling with an iron fist, knows you saw something and offers you a push if you keep your mouth shut.

A push. Every jobber’s dream. To get to win some matches, to get to be on the big cards in the big arenas. You want it more than anything. You begin thinking you imagined the sack-of-potatoes guy – until it happens again.

Now, you have to choose between wrestling fame and doing the right thing. Before this is over, someone else will be dead. And you don’t want it to be you…
Based on the short story Push Comes to Shove, selected by Lawrence Block for the Best American Mystery Stories series.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

COMING SOON: THE SECOND FIGHT CARD ANTHOLOGY

 
COMING SOON: THE SECOND FIGHT CARD ANTHOLOGY
 
Fight Card is excited to publish the collection you now hold in your hands – our second Fight Card charity anthology – Fight Card Presents: Battling Mahoney and Other Stories. This time we’ve upped the ante from ten rounds of two-fisted fight fiction to a full fifteen rounds – with 100% of the proceeds going to help the family of western writing legend, the late Jory Sherman – a mentor and friend to so many in the literary community.
 
Writers helping writers as part of the Fight Card publishing collective.
 
Battling Mahoney and Other Stories is filled with action delivered by many of Fight Card’s top contributors. Legendary pulp writer Len Levinson provides the title story – featuring characters from his popular The Sergeant series of WWII thrillers.  Willis Gordon sets the mood with his extensive essay, On Boxing, and Fight Card favorite James Hopwood (Fight Card: King of the Outback and Fight Card: Rumble in the Jungle) gives us a Hollywood Hits tale featuring Abbott & Costello along with The Brown Bomber himself, Joe Louis.
 
Robert E. Howard scholar Mark Finn (Fight Card: The Adventures of Sailor Tom Sharkey) gives us another top notch ‘weird boxing’ tale, featuring Sailor Tom Sharkey & the Electric Gorilla. Bowie V. Ibarra returns to the Fight Card team with his prose singing The Song of the Cornerman, while Michael Zimmerman gives us one of the hardest hitting stories in the collection, The Broken Man
 
New writers climbing into the ring with Fight Card include Nik Morton (Cowboy in the Ring), Marc Cameron (Rock, Paper, Scissors), Marcia Ward (Bloodied Leather), Clay More (Heat of Battle), and Chuck Tyrell (Fight Day in Diablo). 
 
We are also thrilled to include stories from Loren D. Estleman and James Reasoner, both writers who are held in the highest regard by their peers and readers.
 
This new anthology also sports another beautiful cover from Fight Card’s resident artist/illustrator, the brilliant and talented Carl Yonder (Pirate Eye). 
 
It’s all happening in Fight Card Presents: Battling Mahoney and Other Stories
 
So, keep calm and keep your guard up...


Wednesday, July 9, 2014

FIGHT CARD UPDATE: JULY 2014!

FIGHT CARD UPDATE: JULY 2014!

Our latest Fight Card entry has just hit the virtual bookshelves…Bridgeport Brawler is from Dave White writing as Jack Tunney. The cover is by our man down under, David Foster, and the ad banners are generously provided by Bobby Nash…

FIGHT CARD: BRIDGEPORT BRAWLER

Chicago, 1953…Patrick ‘The Hammer’ White – the Bridgeport Brawler – is on top of the world. He is the current heavyweight champion confidently getting ready to defend his crown. All the training from father Tim at St Vincent’s orphanage has come full circle, and Pat isn’t figuring on being toppled from the championship mountain anytime soon.

Having seen his shares of ups-and-downs, Pat believes the ‘downs’ are behind him.  However, he has forgotten boxing’s dark side. When mob boss Carmen Amello squeezes Pat’s trainer into forcing the champ to take a dive, the ‘downs’ come back with a vengeance.

In the aftermath of disaster, with only bad choices in front of him, the Bridgeport Brawler is going to have to dig deep if he is ever going to hammer his way back to the top…

Bridgeport Brawler is another two-fisted Fight Card tale …



In other news, our second Fight Card charity anthology, Battling Mahoney and Other Stories, is coming together nicely for an August publication.  This time out its 15 rounds of fight fiction to aid the family of the late Jory Sherman.

Fight Card team member Jeremy L.C. Jones has arranged for Fight Card to be the focus of a college marketing project turning four marketing hungry whiz kids loose on trying to find ways to expand Fight Card’s sales and audience.  Jeremy and I had our first meeting with the group today and I am excited to see their progress over the next few weeks.

I have been in touch with those of you who have not seen your books arrive in paperback yet.  As you know, we are making every effort to put the finishing touches on the files and covers needed for you to upload on CreateSpace. 

Next month, a wrestling tale – Fight Card: Push – From Nathan Walpow writing as Jack Tunney…

Until then…Keep Punching

FIGHTING FOR HONOR!

FIGHTING FOR HONOR! 

DAVE WHITE ON WRITING FIGHT CARD: BRIDGEPORT BRAWLER

For me, the chance to write for Fight Card was an honor. I am a big fan and have read most Fight Card books in the series. I have been writing seriously for a few years in the new pulp field – mostly around the 10,000 word mark, so tackling 25,000 words was something new.  However, I was excited by the challenge. I based the main character in Bridgeport Brawler on my pops, who I lost a few years back.

Growing up I was always in front of the television with my dad and my uncle Chili. Inevitably, there was wrestling or boxing on the screen. Obviously, back in the day, there wasn’t pay per view. However, with my uncle living right next door, we were either over there or at our house when an event took place. Admittedly, I didn’t have the grasp of the names and stuff back then – I just enjoyed watching the stuff with pops and my uncle. 

Names like Dick the Bruiser, Crusher Creel, and Pepper Gomez were in many family conversations, as well as Ali and Frazer and George Foreman. My dad had taken martial arts as a kid as well as boxed. So, growing up he would spend time teaching me different techniques. 

I later got into the martial arts and loved it. Life moves us in different ways, but even after getting married and having kids, I still loved heading over to my uncle’s and watching fights with him and Pops. The names had changed, but the joy of watching with the two of them never did. 

There was wagering, always friendly – well usually. But they were both intense fans and, as such, there was always a charge in the air whenever they sat in front of the TV to watch boxing. This, of course, didn’t make my mom or aunt happy, so they usually used those nights to not be around the house.

When I got out of high school, I took up martial arts pretty intensely and even competed in a few matches. Pops was always there to watch. He was also always eager to spar with me for practice. 

Now this may seem like bragging, but it really isn’t. I got pretty good at martial arts, and while my dad had not been involved in the sport or boxing for some 20 years, I still couldn’t touch him half the time. More times than not it was me ending up on my backside. 

Pops was just a natural. Growing up in the city, he was in more than his fair share of brawls. I always heard the stories. And, after all the years of sparing and him teaching me – as he called it – I have no doubt he could have turned pro and done decently in the ring, if not great.

The Bridgeport Brawler puts my Pops in to that scenario. He is the inspiration for the main character, and my uncle is featured as well. They are both gone now, and sorely missed. This book was a chance for me to relive some of the memories. 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Living in Lemont, Illinoise, Dave White is married to his lovely wife Karen with whom he has two kids named Brandon and Allison, and a dog named Snickers.  He dabbled in writing in his twenties when he was into Stephen King, but never pursuded it.  Discovering pulp about six years ago, Dave found his passion for writing renewed.  He had his first prose story published in 2012.  In 2013, he added an Avenger tale from Moonstone.  He hopes to add many notches to his belt in the future.
 
FIGHT CARD: BRIDGEPORT BRAWLER

Chicago, 1953…Patrick ‘The Hammer’ White – the Bridgeport Brawler – is on top of the world. He is the current heavyweight champion confidently getting ready to defend his crown. All the training from father Tim at St Vincent’s orphanage has come full circle, and Pat isn’t figuring on being toppled from the championship mountain anytime soon.

Having seen his shares of ups-and-downs, Pat believes the ‘downs’ are behind him.  However, he has forgotten boxing’s dark side. When mob boss Carmen Amello squeezes Pat’s trainer into forcing the champ to take a dive, the ‘downs’ come back with a vengeance.

In the aftermath of disaster, with only bad choices in front of him, the Bridgeport Brawler is going to have to dig deep if he is ever going to hammer his way back to the top…

Bridgeport Brawler is another two-fisted Fight Card tale …


AVAILABLE NOW ~ FIGHT CARD: BRIDGEPORT BRAWLER!

AVAILABLE NOW ~ FIGHT CARD: BRIDGEPORT BRAWLER!

DAVID WHITE WRITING AS JACK TUNNEY

Chicago, 1953…Patrick ‘The Hammer’ White – the Bridgeport Brawler – is on top of the world. He is the current heavyweight champion confidently getting ready to defend his crown. All the training from father Tim at St Vincent’s orphanage has come full circle, and Pat isn’t figuring on being toppled from the championship mountain anytime soon.

Having seen his shares of ups-and-downs, Pat believes the ‘downs’ are behind him.  However, he has forgotten boxing’s dark side. When mob boss Carmen Amello squeezes Pat’s trainer into forcing the champ to take a dive, the ‘downs’ come back with a vengeance.

In the aftermath of disaster, with only bad choices in front of him, the Bridgeport Brawler is going to have to dig deep if he is ever going to hammer his way back to the top…

Bridgeport Brawler is another two-fisted Fight Card tale …


 
 

Saturday, June 28, 2014

YOU'LL TELL ME NO LIES!

YOU'LL TELL ME NO LIES!

THE INTERROGATOR GETS INTERROGATED ON CRIME AND SCIENCE RADIO ON BLOG TALK ...

Join DP Lyle and Jan Burke as they learn about the art and science of interrogation from renowned expert Paul Bishop, who will also tell us about his long and successful career as a detective with the Los Angeles Police Department, where he worked in the Anti-Terrorist Division and in the investigation of sex crimes.

TO LISTEN CLICK HERE

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

COMING SOON ~ FIGHT CARD: BRIDGEPORT BRAWLER!

COMING SOON ~ FIGHT CARD: BRIDGEPORT BRAWLER!
 
COMING IN JULY 2014!
 
DAVID WHITE WRITING AS JACK TUNNEY
 
Chicago, 1953…Patrick ‘The Hammer’ White – the Bridgeport Brawler – is on top of the world. He is the current heavyweight champion confidently getting ready to defend his crown. All the training from father Tim at St Vincent’s orphanage has come full circle, and Pat isn’t figuring on being toppled from the championship mountain anytime soon.
 
Having seen his shares of ups-and-downs, Pat believes the ‘downs’ are behind him.  However, he has forgotten boxing’s dark side. When mob boss Carmen Amello squeezes Pat’s trainer into forcing the champ to take a dive, the ‘downs’ come back with a vengeance.
 
In the aftermath of disaster, with only bad choices in front of him, the Bridgeport Brawler is going to have to dig deep if he is ever going to hammer his way back to the top…
 
Bridgeport Brawler is another two-fisted Fight Card tale…

Monday, June 23, 2014

AVAILABLE NOW ~ 3 PUNCH COMBO!

AVAILABLE NOW ~ 3 PUNCH COMBO
 
A TRIO OF TWO-FISTED FIGHT CARD TALES FROM ACCLAIMED AUTHOR PAUL BISHOP

FELONY FISTS ~ LAPD cop Patrick ‘Felony’ Flynn has a new assignment – Take down gangster Mickey Cohen’s heavyweight contender punch by punch...

SWAMP WALLOPER ~ Patrick ‘Felony’ Flynn and his LAPD cop partner, Tombstone Jones, are up to their necks in alligators as they punch their way through the New Orleans boxing underground to catch a sadistic killer...

THE CHICAGO PUNCH ~ Crime reporter Nick Lassiter is renowned for his two-fisted prose. Now, chasing a story of a good boxer gone bad, Nick is about to find himself on the receiving end of the Chicago punch…