Tuesday, May 24, 2016


Hi folks,
This is the best book I've ever read.

William Joyce
I’ve never written a review like this and am unlikely to ever do so again. The reason is I’ve never been totally thunderstruck by a book such as William Joyce’s First Born of an Ass. In lieu of a review, in which I am unable to do its genius even close to suitable justice, I’m going to use the email I sent to William Joyce, upon reading its last page. I cannot say what this book did to me better.
Mr. William Joyce, I just finished FIRST BORN OF AN ASS. I am utterly unworthy to write a review, but I shall try. This is the book God would have written if He could write.
Your book has leaped over all books I've read in my lifetime. I cannot talk about it now. I don't know if I'll ever be able to talk about it.
I am going to go to bed and try to figure out who I am. To be honest, I am shattered. I don't think I'll ever be able to write again and that is the truth. One thing I do know; when I am able I am going to do everything in my power to get this book reissued. This is far, far beyond Nobel Prize worthy.
Thank you for the gift of your genius.
Les Edgerton
That is the email I sent him. I realize this opinion is firmly attached to whatever small literary reputation I may have and that may be considered risky and even foolhardy. But, I fully stand by it. I will not compromise what I feel about this book in the least, reputation and all that be damned. If you can point out a better book, I’ll read it. And, if there is a better book out there, then we all might as well give up.
The only action people should take is to get this book reissued or republished. Please read it.
--Les Edgerton, Author, The Rapist, The Bitch, Monday’s Meal and others.
End of review
P.S. William Joyce is still alive and living in St. Augustine, FL. He embodies the very concept of "writer." He is virtually destitute and has been making his living by playing his harmonica outside of restaurants for coins until the police made him cease. The only place you can buy most of his books are from used copies via abebooks and the like... of which he doesn't realize a cent. He has a new novel written, but it's in a storage locker in Miami and he's trying to get enough money to get down there and retrieve it and send it to an agent and publisher. If anyone is in a position to help him out, please let me know. In my opinion, he's a national treasure. He does have one book available as an ebook, a collection of essays, under one of his pen names, Guillermo O'Joyce, titled MILLER, BUKOWSKI & THEIR ENEMIES. He does realize royalties from this one, so please consider glomming onto a copy. Thank you.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016


Hi folks,

I'm about to climb on a plane tomorrow to head to Austin and San Antonio (they're in Texas, case you weren't aware) for eight days of the marvelous Writer's Retreat Workshop (WRW) at the Oblate Retreat Center in San Antone.

Just read a FB post by Craig McNeely, who audited my online writing class last session, who wrote in it:

I've been working on a novel for the past three-four years. Sometimes the work has been heavier than others but still, the fact remains that the book hasn't truly "worked" in this time.
Then, this year, I audited a workshop from Les Edgerton. Learned a few basic but crucial things about storytelling and discovered ways in which I've been too precious about my own work, unwilling to really consider what does or doesn't work, the way I would with a client or an old DLP author.
Now, for instance, I know that this novel really begins on page 34. Got a long way to go to the finish line but it's better now than it ever was before.
So what I'm saying is: you ever get a chance to do this thing with Les in the future, you take it. I promise you'll get something out of it. Maybe not the same as what I got, but there is much insight to be had.
Craig McNeely

And, that reminded me I hadn't sent out a call for auditors for the current session. We had just begun Week 1 of our 10-week session when I had to suspend class for two weeks for my Texas trip. Which means if anyone's interested in auditing this session, we can get you in and you won't miss any of it. We'll pick up with Week 2 after I return on May 22. The fee is $50 for auditing, as opposed to $400 for active participation. We are rarely able to take on new class members as people keep taking it and the ones already in it always have first shot. This last time was a bit unusual as we had two openings from folks who'd finished their novel and are taking a bit of a hiatus while they sell their books. When we do take on new members, we always go to our auditors for the first chance.

If you're interested and would like more info, just shoot me an email at butchedgerton@comcast.net. You won't even miss what we did on Week 1 as it's all archived. You'll see everything we do in class and the only difference between an auditor and an active class member is that, just like in a college class, auditors sit in class but just don't participate. But, they see everything we're doing and just about everyone who's audited has told me it was a remarkably profitable experience for their writing.

So... there ya go. Hope if any of you are in or near Austin tomorrow night, you'll stop in for the Noir @ the Bar reading I'm doing with three other terrific writers at Threadgill's Bar at 7 pm. It's gonna be fun!

Blue skies,

Wednesday, May 4, 2016


Hi folks,

Lot of stuff going on! Just returned from Indy where I gave a workshop on Thelma & Louise and then had dinner with Joe Lansdale. And now, it’s gonna get busy up in here!

Me and Joe Lansdale in Indy.

On May 12, I fly to Austin, Texas where that night at 7 pm I get to take part in a Noir @ the Bar event, hosted by Scott Montgomery of Texas largest independent bookstore, Book People, at the Threadgill’s Bar on Riverside Drive. If you’re in the area, stop in and listen to me, Jesse Sublett, Con Lehane and Jordan Harper reading our stuff. For details, check here: http://www.bookpeople.com/event/noir-bar-feat-les-edgerton-jordan-harper-con-lehane-jesse-sublett

Scott Montgomery and Reavis Wortham at BookPeople

Then, as soon as we’re done, Scott is going to drive me over to San Antonio where I’ll be for the next week at the Writer’s Retreat Workshop (WRW) at the Oblate Retreat as a staffer. Bunch of really good folks appearing there, including Reavis Wortham, Tex Thompson, David Corbett, Michelle Johnson, Matthew Brock, Carol Dougherty, Jason Sitzes, Marjorie Brody, Carl Brush, Scott Montgomery, and Lisa Pirc.

 Marjorie Brody leading a morning session at WRW.

 Carol Dougherty in a one-on-one session with a participant at WRW.

 The Grotto at Oblate Renewal Center. Just a peaceful, gorgeous place... and the food is fantastic!

 Me and Reavis Wortham at MysteryPeople at BookPeople.

 Matt Brock leading a class at WRW.

 Me, doing my thing at WRW.

Some of the back row "bad boys" at WRW...

As it turns out, four more openings for participants for WRW just became available. If interested, just go to their webpage for complete info. If you can swing it, I think you’ll find it to be an experience truly transformative for your writing career. At http://www.writersretreatworkshop.com/index.html

Yesterday, I was honored to have my book BOMB! reviewed on the Booked Podcast. Check it out at:http://www.bookedpodcast.com/304-bomb/

And, a few days back, I had a ton of fun being interviewed by Tom Pitts on his podcast, Skid Row Chatter, on the Authors on the Air podcast. Check it out at:

That’s all, folks! Hope to see some of you at some of these events. And, I know it's short notice, but if you can make it to WRW I think you'll discover it to be a major turning point in your writing career.

Blue skies,