Interviewed by Will Viharo

I’m THRILLED to chat with excellent crime author, Will Viharo, about the Indie crime scene, the importance and pitfalls of using social media for book promotion, and what I’ve got coming down the line. You can check out the short interview RIGHT HERE.

S.W. Lauden is up for two Silver Falchion Reader’s Choice AwardsVoting is open to everybody and no registration is required. Please cast a vote for GRIZZLY SEASON (Best Action/Adventure) and CROSSWISE (Best Mystery)Thank you!

Guest DJ—Will Viharo

We are THRILLED to have “gonzo pulp” author Will Viharo as our Guest DJ this week! I think you’ll agree that this playlist—including everything from Henry Mancini and David Bowie, to Nina Simone and Blondie—is a great way to kick off the weekend. Who knows, it might even inspire you to mix up a cocktail or three.

emailsignatureEarlier this week, Viharo launched Thrillville Press with an announcement on Facebook: “To say the creation of my own imprint followed a circuitous path is a gross understatement. It’s basically 37 years in the making, beginning when I wrote the first draft of CHUMPY WALNUT at age 16 in 1979.”

Since then, Viharo has released several impressive books through a variety of small presses and self-publishing platforms. His two most recent releases, both from 2015, include HARD-BOILED HEART (Gutter Books) and THE SPACE NEEDLER’S INTERGALACTIC BAR GUIDE (Createspace).

The four anthologies currently available from Thrillville Press include: CHUMPY WALNUT AND OTHER STORIES; LAVENDER BLONDE and DOWN A DARK ALLEY;  A MERMAID DROWNS IN THE MIDNIGHT LOUNGE and FREAKS THAT CARRY YOUR LUGGAGE UP TO THE ROOM, and THE VIC VALENTINE CLASSIC CASE FILES (cover design by Matt Brown).

viccoverthrillvillepress1smallBut, sorry folks, Thrillville Press is not open to submissions. This is a one man show.

“Thrillville Press, like all of my artistic endeavors over the past thirty-odd (very odd) years, is purely a labor of love. I’m truly at the point where if anybody doesn’t dig who I am or what I’m about or the work I produce, it simply isn’t my problem. Self-reliance is the key to professional happiness, at least for me.”

I’ll drink to that. Cheers, Will!

S.W. Lauden’s debut novel, BAD CITIZEN CORPORATION, is available now from Rare Bird Books. The second Greg Salem novel, GRIZZLY SEASON, will be published in September 2016. His standalone novella, CROSSWISE, will be published by Down & Out Books in March 2016.

Recommended Reading 2015

rsz_screen_shot_2015-11-24_at_15354_pm

It’s that time of the year. I’ve made a list, checked it a couple dozen times, and now I’m posting it here.

This is not a “Best Of” list in the traditional sense. More of a “Man, I read some great books that got published this year!” list. The titles and authors are in no particular order, and there are probably a few I forgot.

If you haven’t already read these books, you should. Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday are all great excuses to support your favorite booksellers. As if you need another excuse to buy books. (UPDATE: I’ve gotten some great suggestions for this list on other platforms. If you want to mention a book I didn’t, please leave it in the comments below Because: Conversation! —Thanks!).

WTD JS Go Down Hard_FrontCover Contenders med-res cover Young Americans

Novels

  • CANARY by Duane Swierczynski
  • CONTENDERS by Erika Krouse
  • STRANGE SHORES by Arnaldur Indridason
  • HOW TO SUCCESSFULLY KIDNAP STRANGERS by Max Booth III
  • THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN by Paula Hawkins
  • RUMRUNNERS by Eric Beetner
  • UNCLE DUST by Rob Pierce
  • THE MAGICIAN’S LAND by Lev Grossman
  • A NEGRO AND AN OFAY by Danny Gardner
  • WORM by Anthony Neil Smith
  • WAYS TO DIE IN GLASGOW by Jay Stringer
  • GO DOWN HARD by Craig Faustus Buck
  • VORTEX by Paul D. Marks
  • NEW YORKED by Rob Hart
  • YOUNG AMERICANS by Josh Stallings

Bull Hashtag Cartel Zero Saints

Currently Reading

  • THE MAN IN THE WINDOW by Dana King
  • THE CARTEL by Don Winslow

Still On The TBR List

  • KILL ME QUICK by Paul D. Brazill
  • HASHTAG by Eryk Pruitt
  • ZERO SAINTS by Gabino Iglesias
  • BULL MOUNTAIN by Brian Panowich
  • THE SUBTLE ART OF BRUTALITY by Ryan Sayles

safe-inside-the-violence_cover Redbone_Cover DreamingDeep Knuckleball_frontcover_dress_fin

Novellas & Anthologies

  • THE FURY OF BLACKY JAGUAR by Angel Luis Colon
  • DREAMING DEEP by Anonymous-9
  • THE DEEPENING SHADE by Jake Hinkson
  • REDBONE by Matt Phillips
  • DEAD HEAT WITH THE REAPER by William E. Wallace
  • KNUCKLEBALL by Tom Pitts
  • SAFE INSIDE THE VIOLENCE by Chris Irvin

December Boys City Of Rose Hard-Boiled Heart FLOODGATE

Looking Forward To 2016

  • CLEANING UP FINN by Sarah M. Chen
  • GRAVEYARD LOVE by Scott Adlerberg
  • CITY OF ROSE by Rob Hart
  • DECEMBER BOYS by Joe Clifford
  • ROUGH TRADE by Todd Robinson
  • HARD-BOILED HEART by Will Viharo
  • FLOODGATE by Johnny Shaw

S.W. Lauden’s debut novel, BAD CITIZEN CORPORATION, is available now from Rare Bird Books. His novella, CROSSWISE, will be published by Down & Out Books in 2016.

My New Short Story—Dark Corners, Vol. 1 Issue 4

Dark CornersI am thrilled to announce that my latest short story, MAID MAN, was just released in Dark Corners, Volume 1 Issue 4. How awesome is that cover art? And how incredible is this line up? Emily McNeely, Heath Lowrance, James Queally, Ed Kurtz, Patrick Cooper, Warren Moore, Will Viharo and more.

If you aren’t familiar with Dark Corners, it is published by Double Life Press out of Arkansas and it has featured some of my favorite modern crime/mystery writers including Tom PittsEryk Pruitt, Eric Beetner, J. David Osborne and many, many more.

Double Life Press also recently published an impressive roster of novels ranging from TREVOR ENGLISH by Pablo D’Stair to DEATH THING by Andrew Hilbert. Coming later this summer from DLP is THE BIRTHDAY SLASHER by April Hawks and PROXIMITY by Scott Grand. Later this year you can look forward to THE TALES OF ELLIOT CAPRICE BOOK ONE: A NEGRO AND AN OFAY by Danny Gardner.

rsz_screen_shot_2015-04-19_at_44611_pm

I recently interviewed DLP/Dark Corners founder Craig T. McNeely and he had some very interesting things to say about Indie publishing. You can read the whole interview right HERE.

S.W. Lauden’s short fiction has been accepted for publication by Out of the Gutter, Criminal Element, Dark Corners, Dead Guns Magazine, Akashic Books, WeirdBook, Spelk Fiction, Shotgun Honey and Crimespree Magazine. His debut novel, BAD CITIZEN CORPORATION, will be published in October 2015. His novella, CROSSWISE, will be published by Down & Out Books in 2016.

Quick Quotes—The Week In Publishing

rsz_screen_shot_2015-06-07_at_52749_am

 

—Joyce Schnieder at Twitter

“I believe that reading only packaged microwavable fiction ruins the taste, destabilizes the moral blood pressure, and makes the mind obese. Fortunately, I also know that many human beings have an innate resistance to baloney and a taste for quality rooted deeper than even marketing can reach.” —Ursula K. LeGuin at Book View Cafe

“Pride is difficult to parse in the present moment. Pride is not the same as vanity. Pride is what makes a young writer believe that her words are worth reading, despite a world, a culture, that might prefer her silence.”—Nick Ripatrazone at The Millions

“Social media is a tricky thing. And it gets trickier when you start to run a business. Around April of 2013 I went from a degenerate loser with a big mouth to someone tasked with responsibility, namely for the folks gracious enough to let me publish them. I had to switch my game up. As a friend told me over beers: ‘You have responsibilities now. You need to shut the fuck up.'” —J. David Osborne at Gods Fare No Better

“One of the things I’m most thankful for, in terms of being an author and managing my career, is my day job experience as a publicist. Not just because of the contacts I have, but also because I know publicity – and building a career – isn’t about a flurry of activity. It’s a marathon. It’s about knowing when to go loud, when to step back and when to ramp up. It’s about knowing when to step back and ‘go quiet.'”—Alex Segura at Do Some Damage

rsz_screen_shot_2015-05-30_at_52349_pm_2

“I write to keep myself relatively sane. I write to give my existence on Earth a purpose. I write because it’s emotionally, intellectually and spiritually stimulating and compulsive. I write because I never knew my schizophrenic mother and I was raised within a right-wing guru cult in New Jersey and then thrust out into the big, scary world (Los Angeles) alone at age 16 and I kept writing to survive my own intense loneliness, isolation, confusion and fears.”—Will Viharo at Bad Citizen Corporation

“Not everything we do has to result in a book sale, but it can result in a connection, a relationship that may at some point lead to a sale. The point is to focus your message so your readers can find you, and engage with you but more importantly, you with them.”—Rachel Thompson at Bad Redhead Media

“The most rewarding books are the ones where the finished story almost lives up to the idea that sparked it.”—Stephen King at New York Times

“Man, woman, cyborg — no matter what kind of writer you are, if you want to win a major literary award, there’s just one thing you have to do: Make sure your main character is a man.”—Claire Fallon at Huffington Post

S.W. Lauden is a writer and drummer living in Los Angeles. His short fiction has been accepted for publication by Out of the Gutter, Criminal Element, Akashic Books, Spelk Fiction, Shotgun Honey and Crimespree Magazine. His debut novel, BAD CITIZEN CORPORATION, will be published in 2015. His novella, CROSSWISE, will be published by Down & Out Books in 2016.

Interrogation: Will Viharo

Experience the Thrill–SeattleWho: Will Viharo

What: A pulp novelist, freelance writer, B movie impresario, and lounge lizard at large. One of his novels, LOVE STORIES ARE TOO VIOLENT FOR ME, has been optioned for a film by Christian Slater since 2001. For many years in the San Francisco Bay Area he programmed and produced a roving “cult movie cabaret” called “Thrillville,” hosting hundreds of live B movie/burlesque shows as “Will the Thrill” along with his wife, Monica Cortes Viharo, AKA “The Tiki Goddess.”

Where: Seattle

Interview conducted by email. Some questions and answers have been edited.

I just finished A MERMAID DROWNS IN THE MIDNIGHT LOUNGE and my head is still swimming. Great stuff. How did this story begin for you? What are some of the most unexpected ways in which it evolved?

I actually first began writing this novel—which turned out to be my personal favorite of all my books—back in 1997. I’d just split from my first wife of like three months, so I was emotionally devastated, and I was working my ass off 12 hours a day as an Aero delivery driver in San Francisco while living in a cheap little hovel over in Oakland, near Lake Merritt, walking distance from the Parkway Theater, which had just been reopened and renovated as a combo movie house/restaurant by some friends of mine, who asked me to host and program a weekly midnight movie show, which I initially called “The Midnight Lounge.” These same friends had founded Wild Card Press and published my novel LOVE STORIES ARE TOO VIOLENT FOR ME back in 1995, but frankly they were professional dilettantes and quickly dropped the press in favor of the much more lucrative film exhibition/food racket, which proved very successful, until the entire business collapsed due primarily to internal turmoil in 2009. pulpcollection2By that time I had pretty much given up on ever achieving my dream career as a novelist, though I still wrote and published a lot of freelance articles on pop culture and such. Plus my live show, now locally famous as “Thrillville,” garnered a ton of local publicity, establishing my “brand name,” though not in my field of choice. I was also happily married to my “lovely assistant” from my cult movie show, Monica “the Tiki Goddess” Cortes. We were wed at the Cal-Neva in North Lake Tahoe with a Rat Pack/mariachi ceremony/reception on May 31, 2001, exactly four years after I first met her at my screening of Jailhouse Rock on May 31, 1997. So I was no longer lonely, the main source of much of my literary therapy. Anyway, I’d put down MERMAID once the theater took off and I was hired as a full time publicist/programmer. But when the company abruptly folded, my backup career went with it. Now, suddenly without a steady income again, facing a return to the series of crappy odd jobs I’d been sustaining myself with since age 16, I was back in familiar, full-on panic mode.
Continue reading

Five New Books From Double Life Press Today

Double Life Press First FiveDouble Life Press founder Craig T. McNeely is not a man with small ambitions. His company burst onto the Indie crime scene in 2014 with the quarterly pulp fiction magazine, DARK CORNERS. The formation of Double Life Press followed shortly thereafter, with the stated goal of publishing writing “without boundaries.”

So it should come as no surprise that his publishing company is releasing its first five books on the same day. They are:

  1. THE THRILLVILLE PULP FICTION COLLECTION by Will Viharo, Vol. 1-3, is a series of “double features” reprinting the best work of underground literary legend Will Viharo in new, definitive editions.
  2. TREVOR ENGLISH by Pablo D’Stair collects five novellas featuring the titular character in one volume as they were meant to be read. D’Stair is one of the most original voices in crime fiction, as well as a filmmaker and ten thousand other things.
  3. DEATH THING by Andrew Hilbert is a horror novella about a guy named Gilbert who converts his car into a death trap because he’s sick of people breaking into it at night. Its scary and mean and hilarious and unlike anything else you are likely to read this year.

Continue reading