I’ve got a lot of raw dough proofing right now, a lot of rough drafts of things that I’m going to be fixing and hopefully publishing in 2013. I’ve got one novella, How to Kill, which is a really bleak noir about a suicidal, Doug Stanhope-ish comedian who becomes the MC of a drug-den bar in the high desert. I’ve also got the rough draft of a novel, tentatively called Ride or Die, which is a modern take on Lone Wolf and Cub about an ex-con and his daughter, both marked for death, taking on a white-power gang in Southern California. And I have something about dog fighting that might be a novel or a novella called Lucy in the Pit. The first part of it was published in the new ThugLit #1.
"An agent worthy to take the crime fiction tradition into the 21st century."
- Hardboiled Wonderland
So go get it.
I've been really flattered by the kind words that people have had for American Death Songs (on sale now, I might mention). Here are some quotes:
"Hardboiled and violent, Jordan Harper polished this work with fine-grit sandpaper. These stories were exercised like racehorses before publication. There is an exquisite economy to the words, skill and cadence in the sentence structure. The result is an impressive, disciplined work with literary merit, masquerading as hardboiled pulp." - Anonymous-9, author of Hard Bite
"I've never read a Jordan Harper story that didn't leave me shaking my head at what an immense, immense talent he is. And I'm saying this with the guy still owing me sixteen bucks." - Todd Robinson, author of The Hard Bounce.
"Best collection since Knockemstiff ... The collection reads like your favorite band's greatest hits record, not a clunker among them. Sometimes short story writing feels like a dying art. And most of the ones I read I soon forget. That will not be the case here. Comparing a collection to the masterful Knockemstiff by Donald Ray Pollock is not a compliment I throw around lightly. It is a deserved mantle here. This will be one of the best collections you ever read, guaranteed." Joe Clifford, author of Choice Cuts
"Unsparing, brutal, and strangely beautiful." - Allison Glasgow, editor at ThugLit
"There is something deliciously poetic in Jordan Harper's gritty prose. Like being hit with brass knuckles while your sweetheart slips you the tongue, his words draw you in, smack you hard and leave you breathless." Chris Leek in Out of the Gutter
"Nobody makes me more pants-pissing jealous of their f-ing chops than Jordan Harper" - Jedidiah Ayres, author of Fierce Bitches.
This post is for me as much as it is for anyone else. Here's a list of titles of things that I have in progress, hope to complete or may someday start.
Ride or Die
How to Kill
The Demon Cleaners
Give Me Sugar, Joe Colombo
The Wartime Consigliere
The Lion and the Mouse
When you're preparing to sell an ebook on Amazon or Barnes and Noble, they give you the option of either inserting Digital Rights Management software into your book or keeping it DRM-free. I've chosen to keep American Death Songs DRM-free. It's better for the people who buy the book, as they'll be able to control the files more freely. But it's also better for pirating. And I'm okay with that.
First off, just to be clear: I think it would be really awesome if you chose to buy ADS. Every part of this book that cost money - from copyediting to the totally bad-ass cover design - was paid for by my own independant company. In other words, me. I also went out of pocket to fund a short film that is connected to the book and I think you're going to love, and that I will be distributing online for free. If making this book and film works out financially at all (breaking even would be great), then I'm planning on publishing some novellas and a novel later in the year, and maybe making more short films to go with them. I'd really like to maintain this level of quality (really, look at that goddamn cover). So if you can spare the money, I hope you'll buy the book.
But maybe you're a little short on cash right now, or maybe the book isn't available in the country you live in, or maybe you're not sure that my stuff is worth the money. I get it. Download the sucker and give it a read. If you like it, spread the word. And if you want to buy a copy later on, that would be great. (If you're of the opinion that information should always be free to everyone all the time, I disagree with you, but of course that doesn't matter and you're free to download the book as well).
Back when I was broke I downloaded music and even TV shows (don't tell my bosses). Doing so made me a huge music and TV nerd, and now I've spent enough money on music and DVDs to pay for what I downloaded fivefold. If someone downloads my book and it turns them into a fan of crime fiction, or of me, well I'd call that a win. Maybe they'll by the next one. Or at least tell someone else to check it out.
I've never been a believer in karma. I mean, Dick Cheney, right? But nowadays artists (and wow do I shudder to use that work to talk about myself) have a chance to see karma in action. The more you give away the more you get. That's why I made the short film about which there will be more later, and it's why I'm not interested in using DRM.
Over on my Twitter feed, I spent part of last year compiling a Murder Ballad a Day. Murder songs bind together some of my favorite genres of music: country, hip-hop, metal, the blues ... almost every genre has its murder songs. Hell, the Skrillex songs I know all sound like if they had more lyrics, the lyrics would be about killing. While copyright claims have taken away a chunk of the songs away, there's still a pretty decent record of my efforts to be found at this YouTube playlist. Enjoy.
My new story "Lucy in the Pit" is in the new ThugLit available now on Amazon for your kindle or kindle ap. But it here.
"Lucy in the Pit" is a story I've been researching and working on in some form for over four years now, and I'm glad to get at least part of the story I have to tell into the brand new ThugLit. In other words, I'm hoping for a sequel in the coming months. But there's a lot more going on that I'm hoping to tell you about soon.