Blue Christmas @ Near To The Knuckle

“Why was Father Christmas upset when he got a sweater for Christmas?”
I shrug.
“Because he was hoping for a screamer or a moaner.”

Blue Christmas was the third of my three festive crime stories to go live last year, when it was published by UK crime site Near To The Knuckle on Christmas Day!

Funnily enough, my first ever NTTK story was a Christmas story too: Christmas Eve Can Kill You.

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This Book Ain’t Nuttin to Fuck With: A Wu-Tang Tribute Anthology – Out Now

This week saw the release of This Book Ain’t Nuttin to Fuck With: A Wu-Tang Tribute Anthology (Clash Books), a hip-hop themed short story collection edited by Christoph Paul and Grant Wamack.

The book includes my story Incarcerated Scarfaces, which is actually a sequel to my story A Brief History of Bad Men, which appeared in Walk Hand In Hand Into Extinction: Stories Inspired by True Detective (Clash Books), co-edited by the aforementioned Christoph Paul.

Incarcerated Scarfaces tells the story of a disgraced – now imprisoned – private investigator who is enlisted by the prison governor to crack a black-market organ transplant ring operating within the walls of the facility. As you might expect, given the theme of the anthology, a number of fictionalised Wu-Tang Clan members appear in the story!

wu-tang-antho-cover

Contents as follows:

Gabino Iglesias: BIG GHETTO BOYS

Charles Austin Muir: THE RAEKWONOMICON

Joshua Chaplinsky: SUPREME MATHEMATICS: A CIPHER

Mame Bougouma Diene: BEATS, BONES, & BRISKET

Jeremy Thompson: WU-TANGIBLE

J.C. Carter: ABBOT OF THE WHITE LOTUS

Loren Kleinman: SUNSHINE

Robert Dean: THE WORLD FELL BENEATH THE BROKEN CONCRETE

Andy Rausch: THE NIGHT OL’ DIRTY BASTARD CAME TO HOBOKEN

Tom Leins: INCARCERATED SCARFACES

Laura Lee Bahr: THE ONE WHO SWALLOWS THE SEA

J. David Osborne: PCP & METH & MOLLY & ALCOHOL, & NO SLEEP

S.L. Dixon: THE RIGHTEOUS HUNT

Aaron Besson: HELLRZA

Sergio Hernandez: LINX

Crooked Holster 3 Out Now

Albert Erasmus gestures vaguely over his stooped shoulder at the prowl car. It is moving at kerb-crawler pace down Palace Avenue, and the fat plainclothes cop in the passenger seat glares at us.

“You know what they call a Paignton cop in a three-piece suit?”

I shrug, already bored of his shtick. Already bored of his face.

“The defendant.”

I’m delighted to confirm that I have a violent new slice of Paignton Noir entitled Raw Deal included in the latest edition of British crime journal Crooked Holster. It’s the story of a dead lawyer, a crooked property developer and a hardboiled private eye who is only too happy to trawl Paignton’s sick underbelly in search of answers.

The table of contents includes lots of names that are new to me, but I was happy to find myself alongside Brit-grit luminary Paul D. Brazill, who has a story called New Dawn Fades in the same collection.

You can buy this great looking book through Amazon right now, and I believe a Kindle version is in the works.

crooked-holster-covercrooked-holster-raw-deal

Other People’s Blood @ Near To The Knuckle

“Two men I don’t recognise walk into the TV lounge. The fat one is wearing a luminous-coloured t-shirt with the phrase ‘Amateur Gynaecologist’ emblazoned across it. I assume it is a joke, but in this town you never really know. After all, everyone needs a hobby…”

Last month I had a new slab of Paignton Noir over at excellent UK crime fiction site Near To The Knuckle. Check out Other People’s Blood, and let me know what you think!

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Jailbait @ Near To The Knuckle

“I twist the screwdriver out of his neck, and it makes a sound like a sloppy kiss. To his credit, he doesn’t even flinch.”

UK webzine-turned-publisher Near To The Knuckle has been serving up essential reading for fans of short crime fiction for quite a while now, and it is always a thrill to have a new story published by Darren and Craig.

My latest short, Jailbait, went live at the weekend – I hope you enjoy it!

Jailbait Tom Leins Near to the Knuckle

This Is Hardcore @ Pulp Fiction

I recently had a new short story included in Pulp Fiction, a quirky little anthology themed around the songs of Britpop band Pulp.

My story, ‘This Is Hardcore’, is a violent noir story about suburban pornographers. It was good fun to write, and even includes a retired porn star whose back catalogue is made up of films named after obscure Pulp album-tracks.

You can buy it here.

Pulp Fiction cover

Zero Sum @ Spelk Fiction

“Caruso’s dead face was cracked like an old piece of linoleum. One of his eyes was half-shut, the other was totally destroyed.”

This month saw my 5th short story – Zero Sum – go live over at top UK flash site Spelk Fiction. It is always a real pleasure to be featured by Spelk – one of the most eclectic sites on the web!

Zero Sum Tom Leins

Repetition Kills You @ Sein und Werden

“They say repetition kills you. Well, it is sure-as-shit going to kill somebody…
It feels like I have been kicking down the same doors, cracking the same heads and snapping the same bones on an endless loop lately. Last week I stomped the same guy twice in one day – purely by accident.”

Last month my short story Repetition Kills You was included in the ‘Corpus’ issue of Sein und Werden. Sein und Werden is one of the most consistently inventive literature sites in the game, and it is always a pleasure to have a story in one of their themed issues.

If you enjoy this one, check out Meat Bubbles, which was previously featured on the same site.

Repetition Kills You - ink - 2016

The Organ Donor @ Revolution John

“The first time I met Adrian Strange he was carrying a meat-axe. It was never my intention to hospitalise his step-brother – things just got out of hand…”

Like a literary phoenix from the social media flames, US literary site Revolution John has recently re-emerged, and I am happy that my story The Organ Donor is part of the new site.

ORGAN DONOR Tom Leins