Safe Inside the Violence nominated for an Anthony Award


In a bit of belated blogging news...SAFE INSIDE THE VIOLENCE has been nominated for an Anthony Award for Best Anthology or Collection! Couldn't be more thrilled, humbled and honored to see it listed alongside such a fantastic line up of nominees - especially Protectors 2, which features my short story, "Snapshots."

BEST ANTHOLOGY OR COLLECTION Safe Inside the Violence - Christopher Irvin [280 Steps] Protectors 2: Heroes-Stories to Benefit PROTECT - Thomas Pluck, editor [Goombah Gumbo] Thuglit Presents: Cruel Yule: Holiday Tales of Crime for People on the Naughty List - Todd Robinson, editor [CreateSpace] Murder Under the Oaks: Bouchercon Anthology 2015 - Art Taylor, editor [Down & Out] Jewish Noir: Contemporary Tales of Crime and Other Dark Deeds - Kenneth Wishnia, editor [PM]

Protect-heroes-Ingram-coverfront1 Jewish Noir cruel-yule-cover COVER_Murder Under the Oaks_x2700

Check out Bouchercon 2016 for the full list of Awards.

Art Taylor quickly pulled us together last week for a little chat on short fiction. Check it out at SleuthSayers and give these books a look!



See you in New Orleans!

Bouchercon Bound & MORE

Greetings! I've been a bit absent from the blog (a new baby will knock it to the bottom on the list of priorities...) but I'm gearing up for Bouchercon and a busy fall with the release of my debut short story collection, SAFE INSIDE THE VIOLENCE, so here goes a quick update:


No panels or readings for me (yet?) but I'll be dropping off a huge stack of ARCs and milling around the convention/bars for the long weekend. Thursday night's Noir at the Bar hosted by Eryk Pruitt is a must, as well as Tom Pitt's interview of Les Edgerton and Jack Getze on Friday. Looking forward to seeing a lot of great friends. Crime writers are the best.

I'll also have some copies of CHARRED KRAKEN for sale. $5 for 28 pages of kick ass weird noir with art by Artyom Trakanov, colors by Kelly Fitzpatrick, and letters by Thomas Mauer!

Charred Kraken_layout

Still want a copy but not going to be at Bouchercon? Got you covered. The following weekend I'll have a table at...


October 17-18 - FREE comic con at MIT in Cambridge, Massachusetts. I'll be hanging at table D12 (Doucet Hall) with my buddy Joe DellaGatta. A lot of fantastic creators on the list this year. Come out and say hello!


And last but not least...


The Goodreads page is GO and pre-order is up on Amazon for paperback and e-book. Want to order from your local independent? Not a problem - they should be able to order it now as well, if not in the next week.

In the pipeline:

10/22  Noir at the Bar Boston V at Trident Booksellers & Cafe

11/13  Launch Party at Papercuts J.P.

11/18  Brookline Booksmith - author event with Jason Starr

I'm hoping to do a little Black Friday signing in the Libertyville/Vernon Hills area north of Chicago, and a Noir at the Bar Columbus (Ohio) close to Christmas. Stay tuned!

April/May Noir Catch-All

It's been a busy couple of months! Between travel and scribbling away furiously as deadlines approach, the blog has taken a backseat. Here's a short recap: Noir at the Bar Crew[Left to Right - Dale Phillips, Connie Johnson Hambley, Errick Nunnally, Chris Irvin, Tony McMillen, Bracken MacLeod, Mike Miner, Stona Fitch, Patrick Shawn Bagley]

Noir at the Bar Boston II was a great success. Nine authors read some stellar fiction in front of a big crowd. Beers were drank, books were raffled, good times were had. Here's a recap courtesy of Dale Phillips. Stay tuned for news on the next event - June 15th, 6-8pm at Trident Booksellers & Cafe.


Speaking of fun, Independent Bookstore Day at Papercuts J.P. was a blast. Paul Tremblay and I read some of our favorite fiction by other writers that has inspired us (Shirley Jackson, Nathan Ballingrud) and had a great chat about crime and horror. Be sure to snag Paul's A HEAD FULL OF GHOSTS when it drops in June!

Here's a shot Paul took of me talking to doing my thing..



Write The Individual - a short bit on me writing from a female first person POV, the Andrew Smith debacle and advice from Kelly Sue DeConnick.


Terribleminds: Five Things I Learned Writing BURN CARDS

One Bite at a Time - Twenty Questions



My Bookish Ways: Read This

Bracken MacLeod - I like my Noir dark, thank you very much!

Just A Guy That Likes To Read

Chris Dikes - Despair runs deep...



Locked and Loaded: Both Barrels 3

The third volume from Shotgun Honey is out! This baby was a ton of work and took a couple of delays to come together, but I'm proud of how it turned out. Give it a look - there is some fantastic stuff within.

Featuring 25 stories of crime:

“A Boy Like Billy” by Patricia Abbott “Border Crossing” by Michael McGlade “Looking for the Death Trick” by Bracken MacLeod “Maybelle’s Last Stand” by Travis Richardson “Predators” by Marie S. Crosswell “Twenty to Life” by Frank Byrns “So Much Love” by Keith Rawson “Running Late” by Tess Makovesky “Last Supper” by Katanie Duarte “Danny” by Michael Bracken “The Plot” by Jedidiah Ayres “What Alva Wants” by Timothy Friend “Time Enough to Kill” by Kent Gowran “Copas” by Hector Acosta “Yellow Car Punch” by Nigel Bird “Love at First Fight” by Angel Luis Colón “Traps” by Owen Laukkanen “Down the Rickety Stairs” by Alan Orloff “Blackmailer’s Pep Talk” by Chris Rhatigan “With a Little bit of Luck” by Bill Baber “As Cute as a Speckled Pup Under a Red Wagon” by Tony Conaway “Chipping off the Old Block” by Nick Kolakowski “Young Turks and Old Wives” by Shane Simmons “The Hangover Cure” by Seth Lynch “Highway Six” by John L. Thompson



It's official - I'll be crashing Bouchercon 2015 in Raleigh, NC come October. AND my buddy Joe Clifford is up for TWO Anthony Awards - LAMENTATION (Best Novel) and TROUBLE IN THE HEARTLAND (Best Anthology or Collection) - the latter of which is extra-awesome as it features my story, "Death to My Hometown." Hope you see you there.

Until next time...thank you to everyone for your support of BURN CARDS. Can't wait to announce what's coming next.




a book a week 1.5

A little pre-Bouchercon 2013 review action this month:


The End of Everything by Megan Abbott

Megan Abbott is one of my favorite authors. I found her novel, QUEENPIN, to be inspiring for my own writing, and the competitive world of cheerleading in DARE ME to be fascinating. My favorite aspect of Abbott's writing is the first person POV of her characters - the unnamed protagonist in QUEENPIN, Addy in DARE ME - but Lizzie in THE END OF EVERYTHING might just be my favorite. Her intense emotions - twisting of words, actions and memories to fit her reality, balancing between teenage naivety and the darker realization of the nature of the relationships around her. Lizzie/Evie/Dusty's desire for attention/father figures (and more), siblings' struggle for identity and escape, maturing in a complicated world - there are so many layers to this brilliant book. I can't say enough good things.


The Rapist by Les Edgerton

With a title like, THE RAPIST, you expect potential for a little controversy. The challenge of writing in first person from such a despicable POV as Truman Pinter is fraught with peril. I've put down several other stories by authors who attempted similar undertakings. But not only does Edgerton succeed in creating a compelling, unlikeable character, his style and voice are incredible. A haunting read from the present, past and future mind of a rapist. A literary undertaking that is not to be missed.


Piggyback by Tom Pitts

While it's a bummer that Tom Pitts won't be making it to Bouchercon this year (or will he??), I was happy to pick up a signed copy of PIGGYBACK as it had been on my to-read list since it came out last year. PIGGYBACK is the tale of a loser who turns to the wrong guy for help. From the onset, you know this won't turn out well. The book is a blast - the kind of compact, wild novella that you can burn through in one sitting. It's dark - there are no saints here - but the characters are real, their actions believable, and a great sense of black humor carries the day.

Criminal Economics

Criminal Economics by Eric Beetner (limited uncorrected edition #27/100)

From the frying pan and into the fire. Bo and Slick, two fugitive bank robbers on the run from the law and in search of their stash. Beetner throws everything but the kitchen sink at the pair and they keep on coming. Pure noir pulp that never lets up. The book is only available in paperback (limited run of 100 books), so if you are interested, kick Beetner a note or find him at Bouchercon.


Slow Burn by Terrence McCauley

New York City, 1932 - the glitz and glam of prohibition is over and NYPD Detective Charlie Doherty is on the case. It had been some time since I'd read a novel set in the prohibition era, and the tension and fast pacing McCauley brings to the table made SLOW BURN a very pleasant surprise. Fascinating characters (Doherty's parallel with the rise and fall of Prohibition/Tammany Hall), New York corruption and Tammany Hall influence, the detective's interviews - the little details in the novel really set it apart for me. McCauley's excellent prose will keep you glued to the page. For crime fans, especially those of historical mysteries, SLOW BURN is for you. Looking forward to reading his other novel, PROHIBITION.

Until next time...

See you at Bouchercon 2013 in Albany, NY!