Down & Out Books October 2017 Promotion

“I want a Blacky Jaguar TV series. And an action figure. And a lunchbox. And Blacky-branded brass knuckles. Until that day, I’ll settle for this razor-sharp, rattling buzzsaw of a novella.” —Rob Hart

THE FURY OF BLACKY JAGUAR, a Song of Piss & Vinegar by Angel Luis Colón, now just 99¢ on Kindle, Nook, iTunes, and Kobo or from the Down & Out Bookstore. Price effective through October 31st, 2017.

DOWN & OUT: THE MAGAZINE VOLUME 1 ISSUE 1!

Down & Out: The Magazine

Edited by Rick Ollerman. For fans of good writing, good literature, and good crime…welcome. Available from Amazon, Barnes&Noble, iTunes, Kobo, and the Down & Out Bookstore.

WINNER OF THE 2017 ANTHONY AWARD
FOR BEST ANTHOLOGY OR COLLECTION!

Blood on the Bayou.: Bouchercon Anthology 2016

BLOOD ON THE BAYOU: BOUCHERCON ANTHOLOGY 2016
edited by Greg Herren

ABC Group Documentation

ABC GROUP DOCUMENTATION
An Imprint of Down & Out Books

Publisher: Jeremy Stabile

All Due Respect

ALL DUE RESPECT
An Imprint of Down & Out Books

Publisher: Chris Rhatigan

Shotgun Honey

SHOTGUN HONEY
An Imprint of Down & Out Books

Publisher: Ron Earl Phillips

In a continuing series of features from our authors, John Shepphird talks about the novella format.

John Shepphird

What is it about the novella? Why do I keep coming back the format as both a reader, and an author? I say it’s that the novella allows authors to tell an escalating narrative with complete character arcs that’s technically a full meal but on the small-plate menu. Embracing this analogy, War and Peace (over 500K words) is a massive feast, while short stories are regulated to snacks.

When was the last time you started a novel, one that grabbed you, but then along the way you lost interest and didn’t finish the book? If that same novel were shorter, might you have stuck with it? If the author was less concerned about hitting an approximate 80,000 to 100,000 word count that generally defines a “novel” (and focused on boiling the story down to its true essentials) would the book have been more entertaining and held your interest?

If less is more, when is “less” more?

Noir author Les Edgerton in Pam Stack’s Authors on the Air podcast spoke of working in a bookstore and witnessing as customers held two books trying to make a decision. Many chose the largest and heaviest of the two—quantity over quality. This drove Les mad. Maybe there is something about a reader’s expectations of what makes up a book. Do they feel by choosing a novella they’re being slightly cheated, even at a lower price? Maybe that’s why small-plate tapas restaurants are relatively rare while massive-portion chains such as The Cheesecake Factory thrive.

Continue reading…