Thursday, September 1, 2016


Hi folks,

A bit of an update—I won’t be able to attend Bouchercon this year because of a combination of too much ongoing back pain and too little dough. Really kind of bummed—this is my spiritual home town and the place I’ve lived the longest except for where I find myself now, in Fort Hooterville, IN. I was really looking forward to visiting old haunts and old friends—especially the Dungeon and the Oriental Triangle. Or Lakeside and Bucktown and the clubs out there, Fat City, Maple Street and other hangouts. Deannie’s out at the Lakefront. I understand Deannie’s now has a place in the Quarters—my guess is that they jacked up the prices and cut back on the spices. Not gonna miss the Quarters—hardly ever went there when I lived there unless I wanted to eat at overpriced, overrated restaurants (with a couple of exceptions), pay triple prices for watered-down drinks, or hang out with tourists from Iowa, so… hardly ever. Even when I worked in the CBD at the Fairmont and rode the streetcar to and from work every day, a half a block away from Bourbon. Much better coffee at any Morning Call over Café du Monde. Mostly, natives avoid the Quarters—there’s much, much better party and eating places that cost a lot less and don’t attract the tourists. Better music venues than the Quarters also… The Takee-Outees have hugely ruined it...

Hint to visitors—the real party animals come out at two o’clock after the out-of-towners have gone back to their hotels to sleep…

Might try to make Thrillerfest this year instead. Or even Killer Nashville.

I hope I get back to the Big Sleazy one of these days. My preference would be to go down for Jazz Fest. Like most natives, I stay away from town during Mardi Gras. That’s really a deal for the tourists. I do enjoy Mardi Gras down at Grand Isle—it’s much, much gooder.

The Quarters seem like a cool deal when all you’ve seen is cornfields… But, there are other parts of N’Awlins that are so, so much better.

For my friends who do go down—laizzez les bon temps rouler! Go for the lagniappe! And, be sure to walk in the center of the streets and don’t wander past the boundaries. There are projects that await, eagerly…

That sounds like I don’t like New Orleans, doesn’t it? Not the case—just hate the overly-commercial cartoon they’ve made the Quarters into. The rest of it absolutely rocks.

Blue skies,


P.S. Just made a deal with Eric Campbell, the publisher of Down&Out Books for a couple of new books which will be released next year. And, this fall my very first novel, The Death Of Tarpons, is coming out with a new title (don't know what it is yet) as an ebook from Endeavour Books in the U.K. and in paperback from Betimes Books (UK). Tarpons previously only existed in hardcover from the University of North Texas Press and we got the rights back because it had sold out.

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