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New York Times article on the new Stephen King book, Full Dark No Stars, by Terrence Rafferty.

“From the start — even before a young man I can now hardly comprehend started writing ‘The Long Walk’ in his college dormitory room — I felt that the best fiction was both propulsive and assaultive,” Stephen King writes in a chatty afterword to “Full Dark, No Stars,” his new collection of longish stories. “It gets in your face.” As if we didn’t know.

Illustration by Otto Dettmer


By Stephen King

368 pp. Scribner. $27.99

“Full Dark, No Stars” contains, as King’s earlier “Different Seasons” and “Four Past Midnight” did, a quartet of previously unpublished tales that more than satisfy their prolific author’s stated criteria for good fiction. Propulsive? Check. Assaultive? Don’t ask. The stories in “Full Dark, No Stars,” whose lengths range from 30-some pages to well over 100, are for the most part only lightly supernatural and deal, instead, with the unlovelier aspects of merely human behavior. Serial rape and murder figure prominently in two of these stories; in another, a man kills his wife and forces his teenage son to help him; and in the only fully fantastic tale here, a man purchases — from the Devil, of course — health and happiness at the too-affordable price of the ruin of his best friend’s family. It’s grim stuff, but that’s what readers expect of Stephen King. After all, he’s been in our faces for 40 years.

To read the rest of the article click HERE.

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Brian M



News that the New York Times will be ranking e-books in 2011 is FANTASTIC  for writers. In a world where self-published e-books can become best sellers,  and sometimes outsell authors who are household names, this news is especially sweet.

Any writer who has ever dreamed of getting a book on the New York Times Best Seller List but didn’t have a major New York publishing house behind them, now is your chance!

All that’s left to do is that little matter of writing a great book and working out how to electronically market the hell out of it! 😉


Brian M

Nice blog entry from my friend, author Jeff Cohen:


The Five Stages of Publishing

Quite some time ago, at least by my compass, a psychologist named Elisabeth Kubler-Ross made a perennial pest of herself by dividing the process of dying (or grieving, depending on who’s doing the explaining) into five stages. Dr. Kubler-Ross, who died in 2004 but unfortunately did not mention at the time whether she was right or not, decided that the process would be delineated as follows:

1. Denial (“I’m not dying.”)

2. Anger (“Whose fault is this?”)

3. Bargaining (“If I can just live to see my daughter’s grandchildren get old…”)

4. Depression (“Man, dying is a bummer–got a Xanax?”)

5. Acceptance (“Bring it on”).

You have to wonder where shooting victims find the time.

Not terribly long ago, and certainly after Dr. K-R left this mortal coil without disclosing her findings from the real deal, I was asked by a ghostwriting client to extrapolate the doc’s theory into another realm as a book proposal. Now, grafting the process of death onto anything else hardly seemed like an entry to bestseller territory, but it wasn’t my book, so I gave it a shot. Shockingly, the book didn’t sell so fast it would make your head spin.

But given that I’m not trying to sell anything on this blog, perhaps it would be interesting to take the doc’s formula and apply it to the process of writing and publishing a mystery novel. (Perhaps not, but hey, it’s Monday and I have to postsomething…) Let’s take a look:

To read the rest please click HERE:


Brian M