News & Blog

Pulp Fiction Reviews on HUNT AT WORLD’S END

Pulp Fiction Reviews has finally gotten around to my 2009 novel Hunt at World’s End. It’s a rave review, but kind of a backhanded one. Still, here’s a nice pull-quote:

“Hunt at World’s End” maintains [a] level of excellence with a fast paced narrative, colorful characters and exotic locales. What more could a pulp fan want?

Click here to read the review in full, and you’ll see what I mean about it being a backhanded rave. Still, new and positive attention for a book that first came out a little over six years ago isn’t a bad thing!

R.I.P. Glen Orbik

The Beat and Charles Ardai are both reporting that the amazing artist Glen Orbik has passed away at the age of 52 from cancer. Orbik was best known for his pulp-style covers, which he painted for Marvel, DC,  and Vertigo comics, and for Ardai’s Hard Case Crime imprint. He also painted the cover for the original edition of my novel Hunt at World’s End:

Hunt at World's End

I love that cover so much. I think it’s marvelous — even if I wound up having to change the heroine’s hair color because of it! (Cultural anthropologist and Ph.D. candidate Joyce Wingard was described as “raven-haired” in my first draft.)

You can see lots more of Orbik’s incredible work at his website. The art world has lost a colossal talent.

2014: The Year in Kaufmannia

I don’t usually do these year-end wrap-ups (except for my annual list of the books I’ve read, which is coming soon), but I thought this year I’d give it a shot. Let’s start with the big stuff: novels!

This year, my novel Die and Stay Dead came out from St. Martin’s/Griffin, the sequel to last year’s Dying Is My Business. The reviews were pretty snazzy, too. The novel garnered me my first starred review in Publishers Weekly and a glowing review in Rue Morgue, which is my favorite magazine ever. This year also saw the re-release of my Gabriel Hunt novel, Hunt at World’s End, by Titan Books. From what I hear, it’s selling a lot better than when Dorchester/Leisure originally released it back in 2009. You can tell Titan actually cares about how well their books do because they’re putting a little PR behind them, while Dorchester…well, they probably already knew that their doors would be closing soon, so they didn’t do squat to promote the series. Now that World’s End is in better hands — and actually has my name on the cover instead of the house name Gabriel Hunt — I saw royalties from it for the first time, and for a pretty hefty amount, too.

This was the year I also tried my hand at e-book self-publishing for the first time, releasing my 2007 Bram Stoker Award-nominated novelette General Slocum’s Gold for a number of different e-book platforms. So far the sales numbers haven’t set the world on fire or anything, but it was an interesting and rewarding experience. I would definitely consider self-publishing more e-books in the future. Maybe even new stuff.

I spent pretty much all of 2014 working on Only the Dead Sleep, the third volume in the trilogy that started with Dying Is My Business, due to its rather epic length, so I didn’t write any short stories. I did have one published, however, which I wrote in 2013: my Rocketeer story “The Mask of the Pharaoh,” which appeared in The Rocketeer: Jet-Pack Adventures from IDW Publishing. I had a lot of fun writing that one and learned a lot about Hollywood history, thanks to editor Jeff Conner’s incredibly detailed notes. I hope Rocketeer fans enjoy it.

I had a lot more non-fiction out there in 2014 than short fiction. My essay “Hardboiled Horror” was published by Nightmare Magazine. I wrote an article about demons titled “Beyond The Exorcist: Demons of a Different Type” for SF Signal. I was interviewed by The Book Plank and Crime Thriller Fella about the re-release of Hunt at World’s End, and by Blood Rose Books as a featured author. I was interviewed by The Big Thrill, the online magazine of the International Thriller Writers, about the release of Die and Stay Dead. I wrote about the story behind Die and Stay Dead for and wrote about my favorite bit for Mary Robinette Kowal’s blog.

In April, I launched my own blog feature, “The Scariest Part,” to showcase new works of horror, dark fantasy, dark science fiction, and suspense by authors, filmmakers, comic-book writers, and game creators. It’s still going strong, which is great, but so far it’s been 99.9% authors and .1% comic-book writers. I suppose that’s to be expected, but I’d love to get some filmmakers and game creators in there, too. Perhaps in the coming year. You can see past installments of “The Scariest Part” here.

I did a few readings and signings over the past year. In January, I signed books at Dark Delicacies in Burbank, California, alongside Christopher Golden, Amber Benson, and Jonathan Maberry. In May, I read with Chandler Klang Smith and Karen Heuler at the Hi-Fi Bar in Alphabet City. October was my busiest month for readings (hello, horror writer!): I read at WORD in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, with Laird Barron and L.A. Kornetsky; at Writers Read NYC in Alphabet City with Gene Albertelli, Marcia Loughran, and Malcolm McNeill; and at The New York Review of Science Fiction Reading Series in SoHo with John Langan.

I was at Readercon in July, where I hosted my first Kaffeeklatsch, gave a reading, a spoke on a panel about horror for diverse audiences. Also in July, I was a Guest of Honor at NECon, along with Amber Benson and Michael Koryta. There, I was on a panel about non-fiction and a panel about erotic genre fiction, and was interviewed by Toastmaster Jack Haringa. I was also roasted. Ahem. In October, I attended New York Comic Con, which was amazing if utterly overwhelming. In November, I attended the World Fantasy Convention in Washington, DC, where I was on a very fun panel about dragons and saw many, many friends from faraway places.

And that, my friends, was 2014 in a nutshell. Less productive than I would have liked in some respects, but more productive in others. I hope your 2014 was a good one, and that your 2015 will be even better!

Wednesday Interwebs Roundup


(Photo courtesy of M.M. De Voe)

1. The New York Review of Science Fiction reading went very well last night. John Langan and I read to a packed house and a receptive audience. I signed a bunch of books, made a few new fans, and impressed my mother with my live-reading skills. Who could ask for more? Now I am officially done with readings for the year and can give my vocal cords a rest!

2. I don’t publish a lot of short stories these days, so I’m very pleased to see that my story “The Rest Is Noise” was given an Honorable Mention by Ellen Datlow, editor of the Best Horror of the Year series, for horror stories published in 2013. The story can be found in the PS Publishing anthology Dark Fusions, edited by Lois H. Gresh.

3. Mark Hill at the book blog Crime Thriller Fella has an interview with me about the Gabriel Hunt series and Hunt at World’s End. Here’s a snippet:

Gabriel Hunt’s life is different from ours. If he gets a whim to travel to an exotic location in search of a lost civilization, he does it. For the rest of us that’s just a daydream, but for him it’s within reach. I think that’s why readers are attracted to these kinds of heroes. They live the lives we only dream about. Of course, in the end that’s probably for the best. I don’t think I would personally be very good at swinging on a vine across a bottomless chasm while bad guys shoot at me. I’m much better at sitting at a desk and writing about it. It’s a lot safer, too.

4. The World Fantasy Convention starts tomorrow in Washington, DC! I’m looking forward to seeing folks there. When I’m not socializing in the lobby/bar area or hanging out at the ChiZine Publications table, here’s where you can find me!

5. Apparently HarperCollins Canada is getting out of the distribution game and handing all their clients over to R.R. Donnelly. ChiZine Publications, the publishers of my novella Chasing the Dragon, were one of HarperCollins Canada’s distribution clients, so I hope the transition goes as smoothly as possible and that the new arrangement is a lucrative one.