In April 2015, B.K. Stevens debuted the blog series “The First Two Pages,” hosting craft essays by short story writers and novelists analyzing the openings of their own work. The series continued until just after her death in August 2017, and the full archive of those essays can be found at Bonnie’s website. In November 2017, the blog series relocated to my website, and the archive of this second stage of the series can be found here.
This week, Down & Out Book presents the anthology Lawyers, Guns, and Money: Crime Fiction Inspired by the Music of Warren Zevon, which I co-edited with Libby Cudmore. The collection features a stellar line-up of authors (if we do say so ourselves), including Libby herself, as well as Gray Basnight, William Boyle, Dana Cameron, Hilary Davidson, Steve Liskow, Nick Mamatas, Paul D. Marks, Matthew Quinn Martin, Josh Pachter, Charles Salzberg, Laura Ellen Scott, Alex Segura, Kevin Burton Smith, and Brian Thornton. And I was pleased last week to host Laura Ellen Scott at the First Two Pages with the first of four essays by contributors for the anthology. You can find her essay here.
This week, Nick Mamatas reflects on his story “Detox Mansion”—and interestingly, as with Laura’s essay, Nick’s looks back to his childhood and the music he listened to (and what he didn’t listen to as well). And with a timely angle, he also reflects on the legendary music magazine Creem, which has recently been in the news again.
Nick is a prolific writer and a distinguished anthologist as well. He is the author of several novels, including Move Under Ground, I Am Providence, and The Second Shooter. His short fiction has appeared in Best American Mystery Stories, Year’s Best Science Fiction and Fantasy, and three different Akashic Noir volumes—Long Island, Vancouver, and Berkeley—among other venues. He co-edited the Bram Stoker Award-winner Haunted Legends with Ellen Datlow, and the Locus Award nominees The Future is Japanese and Hanzai Japan with Masumi Washington, and his latest turn as editor is Wonder and Glory Forever: Awe-Inspiring Lovecraftian Fiction. Nick’s fiction and editorial work has been variously nominated for the Stoker, Hugo, World Fantasy, and Shirley Jackson awards. You can find out more at his website here.
Hope everyone enjoys Lawyers, Guns, and Money—and stay tuned for more essays ahead!
Please use the arrows and controls at the bottom of the embedded PDF to navigate through the essay. You can also download the essay to read off-line.Mamatas-First-Two-Pages-1