"You know what? The bastard blows me out of the water. This guy writes Maine like Ardai writes New York. If you're not reading him, you don't know what you're missing." --Chris F. Holm, author of The Big Reap, The Wrong Goodbye and Dead Harvest.

"Bagley's got the poet's eye, but that doesn't mean everything is prettier in his work. It means the ugly stuff is more vivid. More intense. Like a sudden switch from analog to HD. And that's a trait to very much admire in his work." --Anthony Neil Smith, author of Hogdoggin', Yellow Medicine, The Drummer and Psychosomatic.




Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Mid-Coast Halloween Reading: Jen Blood, Katherine Silva and Patrick Shawn Bagley

This is going to be an excellent reading with two talented writers, plus...um, me! Two out of three ain't bad, and they're not even charging admission. So if you're in the mid-coast Maine area on October 24, I hope to see you there.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Breath & Shadow

Ability Maine is a nonprofit organization which advocates for the rights and inclusion of people with disabilities. They also produce a blogzine called Breath & Shadow, which spotlights writing by many of the people they support. Each issue brings some excellent poetry, nonfiction, flash fiction, short stories, essays and reviews. The Spring 2013 issue features hard-hitting piece of flash fiction by William Ward called "The Jungle." Check it out today. You won't be disappointed. You might even see things from a new perspective.

It's Almost Reapin' Time

As the release date for his third novel (The Big Reap) draws closer, Chris F. Holm reflects on the writing life.

Friday, May 3, 2013

WWEAPD (What Would Edgar Allan Poe Do)?

 
The Mystery Writers of America have announced the winners of the 2013 Edgar Awards.
 
 
 
BEST NOVEL
 
 
Live by Night by Dennis Lehane (HarperCollins Publishers – William Morrow)
 

BEST FIRST NOVEL BY AN AMERICAN AUTHOR


The Expats by Chris Pavone (Crown Publishers)



BEST PAPERBACK ORIGINAL


The Last Policeman: A Novel by Ben H. Winters (Quirk Books)



BEST FACT CRIME
Midnight in Peking: How the Murder of a Young Englishwoman Haunted


the Last Days of Old China by Paul French (Penguin Group USA – Penguin Books)



BEST CRITICAL/BIOGRAPHICAL
The Scientific Sherlock Holmes: Cracking the Case with Science and Forensics
 
by James O’Brien (Oxford University Press)

BEST SHORT STORY

"The Unremarkable Heart" – Mystery Writers of America Presents: Vengeance
by Karin Slaughter (Hachette Book Group – Little, Brown and Company – Mulholland Books)

1
BEST JUVENILE


The Quick Fix by Jack D. Ferraiolo (Abrams – Amulet Books)



BEST YOUNG ADULT


Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein (Disney Publishing Worldwide - Hyperion)



BEST TELEVISION EPISODE TELEPLAY


“A Scandal in Belgravia” – Sherlock, Teleplay by Steven Moffat (BBC/Masterpiece)



ROBERT L. FISH MEMORIAL AWARD

"When They Are Done With Us" – Staten Island Noir
by Patricia Smith (Akashic Books)

GRAND MASTER


Ken Follett
Margaret Maron

RAVEN AWARDS


Oline Cogdill
Mysterious Galaxy Bookstore, San Diego & Redondo Beach, CA

ELLERY QUEEN AWARD


Akashic Books

THE SIMON & SCHUSTER - MARY HIGGINS CLARK AWARD


(Presented at MWA’s Agents & Editors Party on Wednesday, May 1, 2013)

The Other Woman by Hank Phillippi Ryan (Forge Books)

Thursday, May 2, 2013

A Start (Maybe)

Here's something I wrote last night, trying to set a mood. I don't where this piece might go, but it feels like an okay start.



Two years working on Elman Luce’s farm and Doyle had never once set foot in the old man’s house.  Now here he was, sitting at the kitchen table across from his boss while Mrs. Luce busied herself with fixing supper.  Doyle took in the cross-stitched Bible verses hung between the windows, the linen calendar, the electric range sitting next to the old wood-fired cook stove, the handmade oven mitts and the linoleum floor—spotless except for small black burns where someone had been careless when emptying the stove of coals and ashes.  It was house so unlike his own; even though he’d been asked in, he felt like an intruder.

Luce stared at the table, rubbing with his thumb at a worn spot in the Formica top.  The old man blew through his nose and pushed himself up from the table, lumbered over to a cupboard from which he took a bottle of whiskey that sat on a high shelf.  The bottle was mostly full.  With his wife scowling at him, Luce poured some into two tumblers and handed one to Doyle.

A cold feeling seeped through Doyle’s guts.  Elman Luce’s stinginess with liquor was just as legendary as Mrs. Luce’s hatred of the stuff. Whatever the old man had to tell Doyle, it wasn’t going to be a joke.

Taking Attendance

Twenty-four people visited this blog today.



Weird.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Been a Long Time Since I Rock and Rolled...

A quick glance at the sidebar will show you I haven't published a story since 2009. That's not much of a hiatus by Charles Portis's standards, sure, but it's one hell of long time for a writer who was considered to be up-and-coming.

So what happened?

Stuff. Stuff happened. I fired my agent. Then I stopped writing for a while.

No, that's not quite true. I've been writing every day, often for hours at a stretch. But that's part of my day job. See, I supervise two homes for adults with cognitive disabilities. My work entails writing behavior plans, support plans, reports, protocols, etc. There are meetings, budgetary considerations, staff to train and manage. I teach Mandt. I work as an agency investigator for Adult Protective Services, which also requires mucho writing. I love my job and plan to stick with it for a long, long time.

So what about fiction, all the short stories I wanted to write? What about novels? What about Bitter Water Blues?

I'm working on a couple of short stories set in Wesserunsett, though I'm not sure where they're going. I've started a new novel that is, well...pretty fucking weird. And I'm having a blast writing it (hat tip to Chris F. Holm; he knows why).

As for Bitter Water Blues, that one has become my "trunk novel." Sort of. I'm currently rewriting sections of it as a novella called The Ballad of Hag & Earl. It is some of the nastiest, grittiest country noir you'll ever see. And you will see it. The rest of it is probably best left buried and forgotten.

I've learned a lot about making time for the writing I want to do, as opposed to using my day job as an excuse for avoiding it. Will I regain that up-and-comer status of just a few years back? I sure as hell hope so. I want to get back there and then hit the next level. And I hope you're all still interested enough to read my new stuff when it comes out.

Thanks for being cool and hanging around.