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Thomas Burchfield's Blog

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Jun.04.2012
  It’s Monday, June 4, not a good day to not be in New York. My old college girlfriend just this last week moved into a lovely house in Connecticut, an hour or so drive through the rich subtropical-green sward from where I was born and brought up in Westchester County, news that turns over in...
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May.27.2012
  During my rant against the ubiquity of crap fiction in the world of e-books last week, I mentioned a “50 percent theory” that I recall encountering in The New Yorker awhile ago: that when we say we love an author’s books, what we really mean is that we love, say, around half of them. This...
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May.19.2012
  I guess I won’t be moving into that chateau on Lake Como next door to George Clooney anytime soon. I mean, I’d sure love to have genre writer James Patterson’s money. But I doubt I’d enjoy having to keep up his fertility rate. When I think about his huge output, I hearken back to my early...
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May.13.2012
Tuesday afternoon, I was at my desk, writing e-mails, trying to drum up editing business and rescue a slow slow year, when the phone rang. The call screener read “The Jenkins Group.” A tiny waved rippled through my memory. At last, a client, perhaps? “My name is Andrew Parvel, from the Jenkins...
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May.12.2012
  For Immediate Release Oakland, CA—May 12, 2012 (Ambler House Publishing): Dragon’s Ark, a horror novel by Northern California author Thomas Burchfield has won the Bronze Medal in the Horror category in the 2012 Independent Book Publishers Association Awards (“IPPY”). Dragon’s Ark tells the...
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May.05.2012
  You may have recently heard that Edvard Munch’s masterpiece “The Scream” sold for a near-record $120 million. Shortly after, San Francisco Chronicle movie critic Mick LaSalle held a vote on his “Maximum Strength Mick” blog, asking readers which of 31 Old Master masterpieces would they like...
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Apr.28.2012
The Schirmer Inheritance (Knopf; 1953) is the second novel Eric Ambler wrote after he returned to fiction writing following his service in World War II. His previous novel, Judgment on Deltchev mirrored—brilliantly, I thought--the collapse of Ambler’s Marxist idealism and passion for politics...
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Apr.21.2012
Kate Moore, the protagonist in Chris Pavone’s entertaining novel The Expats, is one of those people who can’t bring their work home, but once she quits her job, it follows her anyway. As the novel opens, her husband, Dexter, an online security expert, announces to her that he has a new job, one...
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Apr.19.2012
I had to turn off Yahoo Safe Search to find this image, I’ll have you know! This morning I went down to our large garage (an extremely rare Bay Area phenomenon) and dug out the March 1977 issue of Playboy magazine. I’d bought that issue, used, for author Jules Siegal’s memoir about his strained...
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Apr.14.2012
Oakland Bay Bridge, April 12, 2012 A couple nights ago, a rare thunderstorm boomed across the Bay Area, one of the biggest storms in years. On the coast, we get them once a year, at most. Thunderstorms don’t come often enough for me. I enjoyed how every flash brightly flickered into our house,...
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Apr.11.2012
  FACE UP ON FACEBOOK   To twist a line from The Good, the Bad & the Ugly, there are two kinds of people in the social networking world: those who embrace it like a lover; and those who see it as a tool, who use it like a carpenter who uses his hammer without mistaking it for the...
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Apr.07.2012
THE TWITVERSE First a brief disclaimer: All that follows here is experience, not advice. My books are somewhat niche products and not for everyone (say, Amanda Hocking readers). So, nothing I say here on the ins and out of independent publishing and marketing should be taken as “advice” until, say...
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Mar.31.2012
Donald Westlake, one of the best genre writers ever, may have passed away in 2008, but his master’s voice still calls through the shade.  After his realist novel Memory was pulled from oblivion’s ashes by Hard Case Crime in 2010, everyone thought that was it—no more treasures stashed in rusty...
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Mar.29.2012
  [Here’s something that doesn’t happen every day: The following is a response by Gray Brechin to my review of his book, Imperial San Francisco: Urban Power, Earthly Ruin, which, with Gray’s kind permission, I’m now sharing with you.] Dear Thomas, Belated thanks for the kind and fine review...
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Mar.24.2012
Though my WIP novel Butchertown is set in a highly fictionalized—but recognizable—East Bay city, San Francisco (also fictionalized) exerts its own tug from across the Bay reaching through the chilly fog that seeps through the entire story from beginning to end. A bigger tug than I realized, as I’...
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