About Me

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"We need to make books cool again. If you go home with someone & they don't have books, don't fuck 'em."--John Waters

I'm the author of more than twenty novels including SHADOW SEASON, THE COLD SPOT, THE COLDEST MILE, THE MIDNIGHT ROAD, THE DEAD LETTERS, and A CHOIR OF ILL CHILDREN. Look for my next one THE LAST KIND WORDS due out May '12 from Bantam Books. Contact: PicSelf1@aol.com

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

SHADOW SEASON out today!

My new novel SHADOW SEASON hits bookstores today. Race across the face of the earth, people, and get your copy of SHADOW SEASON today. Hope you love the fuckall out of the book. If you do, and you blog about it, write a review on Amazon.com or B&N.com,buy extra copies for your mama & daddy... & the kiddies, spread the word, then you will be blessed by heaven and all the riches you so rightly deserve will be yours for the plucking.

You can find a new piece by Jeff VanderMeer on the Amazon blogs here: http://bit.ly/2UcuXg

Here's an interview with me up at The Big Adios focused on the writing of the book: http://thebigadios.yuku.com/topic/959

And a few really nice reviews:

"In Piccirilli's brooding, character-driven chiller, former New York City cop Finn, recently blinded, wallows in his new role as an English teacher at a posh girls' boarding school. A storm looms as Finn and a skeleton staff remain to supervise a handful of girls staying at the school during winter break. Piccirilli (The Fever Kill) harps on his theme of isolation with palpable glee as Finn, surrounded by self-absorbed adolescents and mysterious, brutally violent attackers roaming the campus, grapples with blindness amid a sonar-dulling snowstorm in a remote area with no cellphone service. Terrified of solitude and driven by his cop instincts, Finn embarks on a wrenching journey that exposes the raw emotion of a man nearly destroyed by disability and circumstance."--Publishers Weekly, starred review

"The Christmas recess has just begun at St. Valarian's, a private secondary school for girls in upstate New York. A handful of students and staff are still on campus as a nasty blizzard gathers strength. Finn, a blind and deeply conflicted former NYPD detective, teaches literature at the school and longs to murder Ray, his former police partner. Making his way across campus through the storm, Finn encounters a teenage girl, a townie, who warns him that an "ill will" is coming for him. Soon, students and staff are dying, and Finn must defend himself and the survivors. Shadow Season has enough mystery, suspense, dread, and mayhem to satisfy nearly every crime fan. Characters are well developed, but most maintain a hint of mystery. Finn's students, variously precocious, willful, mocking, and provocative, are totally believable. The blizzard ratchets up tension, as does our eagerness to learn why Finn wants to kill Ray. The portentous "ill will" may be a bit over the top, but the novel is terrific entertainment."- Thomas Gaughan, Booklist

Also, northern Colorado's biggest newspaper, The Coloradoan, had this to say: "This is an intense thriller not for sissies. The complex main character tears into savage situations described with authenticity as he grinds through each crisis while dealing with his blindness.You will appreciate the portrayal of the main character Finn's so-called disability, which really isn't one given the way he knows how to utilize it. The entire plot never lets the reader take a breath and never lets up on the gut-wrenching emotional safari into Finn's world of blackness.The dialogue, plot and the multi-layered character reveals itself to you with hammer blows page after page. Highly recommended for thriller fans who appreciate a quality read."

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

How You Waste a Whole Day Trying to Track Down A Comic Book (and Fail Miserably)

The longer I live out here in Loveland, Colorado, the more I miss New York. In NY I could toss a stick and hit 20 comic shops. Out here, there’s two within an hour’s drive.

Punisher #75, featuring stories written by Greg Hurwitz, Duane Swierczynski, Charlie Huston, Peter Milligan, and myself, hit the stands today. I started the day out all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, as bright-eyed and bushy-tailed as I’m ever likely to get anyway, and decided to hit the local comic shop to nab a couple copies. I’m a comics geek. This is a big moment for me. Right on.

Got to the shop about 20 minutes before they opened at 12:30, so I drove over to a second hand bookstore and scrounged around the dusty stacks for a while. Zipped back over to the shop at 12:45. Still not open. With growing irritation, I killed another half hour at a different bookstore.

Tried the comic shop one more time at 1:15, 45 minutes after they supposedly opened today. Still closed. Fuck ‘em, they’ve lost my business.

So I drove up to Fort Collins and tried the one comic shop they have in town. Took me a half hour to get there and another ten minutes to park down in Old Town where there’s all kinds of tight road work happening.

The place is owned by a husband and wife team. Stepped in and spotted the wife putting new comics on the wall. Asked her about Punisher #75.

She said, "That’s not out today."

"Ah, yes, it is."

"No, you’re wrong. No matter what they say on their website, it’s due out next week."

She seemed very certain of herself. Was it possible I’d made a mistake? My editor at Marvel specifically told me it was due out today. But he edits dozens of comics a month. Maybe he was wrong or I got confused on the dates?

The husband pops up from behind the counter and says, "No, it’s here."

"Great!" I say.

"But they’re all damaged copies."

"All damaged?"

"Yes, they’re really fucked up."

"Can I see a copy anyway?"

The guy reaches down into a box and flings the issue at me as if he’s disgusted with its condition. It has the slightest bend at the corner. It probably got bent when he zealously hurled it at me. It’s damn near pristine. I tell him, "This is fine. I’ll take five copies."

He looks at me like I’m out of my bird. "Well, I’m not going to sell it to you!"

"Why not?"

"I’ve already reported them damaged. I have to mail it back. I’ll have more copies next week. Come back then."

I leave the store in somewhat of a daze. Fuck ‘em, they’ve lost my business.

I decide to try the first shop one last time. Maybe someone just overslept. Maybe they took an early lunch. Maybe their car stalled on the side of I-25. I head back to the shop and sure enough, now it’s open. All I needed was faith.

I walk in and check the new comics rack. No Punisher #75. This no longer surprises me. This is something of a foregone conclusion. I ask the owner about the new comics.

"We don’t get new comics on Wednesday."

"But new comics come out on Wednesday. Everyone knows that."

"Yeah, they’re out, but we don’t get them. We get ours on Thursday."


"Otherwise we’d have to drive down to Denver to get them."

This makes no sense to me. Comics are delivered to comic shops. "Why?"

"It’s just how we do it."

Well, in point of fact, it’s just how they don’t do it. If they were doing it, if they were actively pursuing something to its goddamn conclusion, they’d have the comics.

"Okay," I tell the guy. "Pull five copies aside for me."

"I can’t."

"You can’t?"

"I don’t know if I’ll have five extras."

"Okay, pull one extra."

"I can’t."

"You can’t?"

"I don’t know if I’ll have even one extra."

"How about if I come back tomorrow and check and if you have any extras I’ll buy them from you?"


Score: The World 1, Pic 0.

Hopefully you will have much better luck than I did.

While I was there I did manage to nab a copy of issue one of Ed Brubaker’s CRIMINAL: THE SINNERS. Another noir/hardboiled storyline that will rock your socks off. If you haven’t picked up the earlier CRIMINAL comics or graphic novels, do so immediately. The man knows how to write a hard tale, and Sean Phillips, the artist, is also flat-out amazing. Best of all, Ed even gives a nod to SHADOW SEASON at the back of the issue.

Monday, October 12, 2009

More Yackity Yack (I'm Talkin' Back)

Another new interview up over at THE BIG ADIOS. This one, oddly enough, is actually WITH me.

Been trapped in the mire of two projects that WILL NOT FUCKING QUIT! And jonesing to start another that I can't get around to yet. Driving me out of my head. Literally. Well, kind of literally. Wound up suffering through two occular migraines this afternoon. Only nominal pain but my head fills up with flashing kaleidoscopic lights. Bizarre and freaky, and nothing to do but lie down in a dark room and wait for it to stop.

And what goes on with you?

Monday, October 5, 2009

Update: Where ya been, Pic?

Since you asked, I'll tell ya:

Been busy as hell, kids. Sorry it's been so long since I've done a blog, but the work's been rougher than usual lately. Finished two major projects, including revisions on my next novel, tentatively titled THE UNDERNEATH (but that might change to THE LAST KIND WORDS or who the hell knows, maybe something else. Which do you like better?) Knocked out three short stories for various anthologies, and I'm currently in the midst of a noirish ghost story, or maybe it's a supernatural noir, I'm not certain.

Here's a few places you can catch up with some of what's been going on--

You can check out the brief article about me now up at the International Thriller Writers zine THE BIG THRILL.

New review of SHADOW SEASON over at Horror World.

Another new interview can be found on Ed Gorman's blog.

The German edition of THE MIDNIGHT ROAD retitled SMERZ (PAIN) is out now and can be ordered via the German Amazon.

Also, over on THE BIG ADIOS you can find new interviews with the likes of:

Russell Atwood, author of EAST OF A and LOSERS LIVE LONGER.

Seth Harwood, author of the uber-hip crime novel JACK WAKES UP.

Joe Schreiber, horror author of CHASING THE DEAD, EAT THE DARK, and NO DOORS, NO WINDOWS. His latest is a real chiller.


And REMEMBER, it's T-minus 21 days (that's right, three frickin' weeks) until SHADOW SEASON hits the shelves.

And PUNISHER #75 should be out in the next week or two. Nab a copy and let me know what you think of my first comic book story. Unless you hate it, then you don't need to share.