Steve Ulfelder

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A thousand words a day

Posted by on Apr 13, 2009 in Conway Sax, Writing |

I’m neither sentimental nor a pack rat; I don’t save a lot of notes or other ephemera regarding my books (rather, each gets one chaotic Word doc that serves as an all-purpose dumping ground for character sketches, plot ideas and the like). However, for each novel I do save a document like the one you see here: a simple running count showing how...

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Cavalcade of excuses

Posted by on Jan 30, 2009 in Palaver, Writing | 1 comment

No blog posts for two weeks? Surely this demands a bullet list of half-assed excuses. Fortunately, half-assed excuses are a specialty. As are bullet lists, come to think of it. Twitter scratches the itch. A few months ago I joined Facebook, just like all the other day-late-dollar-short middle-aged doofuses. And like many of my fellow doofuses (doofi?), I...

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Donald Westlake’s death

Posted by on Jan 3, 2009 in Writing |

He was a fine writer. I’ve said before that the Parker novels he wrote under the name Richard Stark are among my touchstones. It would be fruitless to add more; rather, you can check out Sarah Weinman for an unmatchable reaction roundup. Here’s the thing, though: we treasure these writers too late. Once they hit age 70 (Westlake died at 75), if...

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Dave Zeltserman on Jim Thompson

Posted by on Dec 2, 2008 in Movies, Writing |

So I got an email from an old pal of mine who’s using the handle GFS3 (very cool, that – I asked for such a handle once, but everybody started calling me DPSHT1, so I quietly let the matter drop). This guy and I became friends when I was in tech journalism and he was a PR guy.* GFS3 is running a cool blog these days, Dark Party Review. Kinda...

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Baked!

Posted by on Nov 17, 2008 in Writing | 5 comments

This past weekend I hit my third consecutive Crimebake – the mystery conference put on by the Mystery Writers of America’s New England Chapter, of which I am a proud member. The organizers did a terrific job, as usual. A few highlights: Was pleasantly surprised at how many attendees and panelists I knew. By nature I’m not a joiner, but...

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Solid month here at Amalgamated Crime Books Inc.

Posted by on Oct 31, 2008 in Conway Sax, Writing | 1 comment

I decided not to produce any words today: Conway Sax, my protagonist, gets a breather. And a well earned one. At the beginning of October, Conway had just met Andy Phigg. Andy’s the only son of Tander Phigg Jr., the heir to a Fitchburg, Massachusetts, paper-mill fortune who blew his inheritance (how?) and hanged himself (or did he?) in a squalid...

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