Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Ace Atkins short story nominated for the Edgar!

We are very excited to announce that Ace Atkins's original Nick Travers tale, "Last Fair Deal Gone Down," -- published for the first time in Busted Flush Press's reprint of the first Travers novel, Crossroad Blues -- has been nominated for the 2010 Edgar Award for Best Short Story! He's in good company, with Dana Cameron, Jim Fusilli, Dennis Lehane, and Luis Alberto Urrea. (Find the complete list of Edgar nominations here.)

We wish Ace lots of luck! Be sure to keep an eye on where Ace will be signing his new historical crime novel, Infamous (Putnam; April), about Machine Gun Kelly & his wife... he'll post the tour soon here.

And here's something interesting... there are three Edgar Award streaks of three in effect this year:

John Hart -- Three straight books up for Edgar!
The King of Lies
-- Edgar Award nominee for Best First Novel (2007)
Down River -- Edgar Award winner for Best Novel (2008)
The Last Child -- Edgar Award nominee for Best Novel (2010)
(He didn't have a book out in 2008.)

Megan Abbott -- Three straight nominations in years she's been eligible!
Die a Little
-- Edgar Award nominee for Best First Novel (2006)
Queenpin -- Edgar Award winner for Best Paperback Original (2008)
Bury Me Deep -- Edgar Award nominee for Best Paperback Original (2010)
(She had no books in 2007 or 2008, but two in 2007.)

Busted Flush Press -- Three straight Short Story nominations!
Bill Crider's "Cranked" from Damn Near Dead -- Edgar Award nominee for Best Short Story(2007)
Daniel Woodrell's "Uncle" from A Hell of a Woman -- Edgar Award nominee for Best Short Story (2008)
Ace Atkins's "Last Fair Deal Gone Down", an original short story published for the first time in Busted Flush Press's reprint of Atkins's first novel, Crossroad Blues -- Edgar Award nominee for Best Short Story (2010)
(BFP didn't have an original story out in 2008.)

UPDATED 01/20/10: Ace Atkins comments on the Edgar nomination...

"One of the best things about being a writer is that an old story is never really old; that story is as new and fresh as when you first wrote it. It’s alive in the hands of your reader in that great collaboration.

"I was more than thrilled to get an early morning phone call from Busted Flush Press yesterday letting me know that 'Last Fair Deal Gone Down' was nominated for an Edgar for Best Short Story. This was a story that had a hell of a time finding an audience. I wrote it fifteen years ago, the first story where Nick Travers, who would find action in four novels, burst into my imagination and started my career as a writer.

"When David and I first spoke about bringing out a new edition of
Crossroad Blues, I instantly thought of the short. I hadn’t read it for some time and was really surprised as veteran writer to see how well it held up. Not to say I didn’t make a few small edits, but the story is pretty much as I’d left it back in 1995.

"Chandler
wrote about the 'animal gusto' of a new writer really pounding the keys, finding passion and energy in those first stories. And I do believe 'Last Fair Deal Gone Down' had that in spades. I had always thought of the short appearing alongside Crossroad Blues, a book that was initially written as a novella. But as I said, I was a young writer, and when I mentioned the word 'novella' to my editor at St. Martin ’s, he said: 'Can you add about 100 pages in a month?'

"And so
Crossroad Blues and 'Last Fair Deal Gone Down' were separated for all these years. The story was relegated to the hard drive of an old computer that never did enter the internet age.

"This story was the first time I felt that I could really do this, work as a storyteller. But I had no idea what I was writing as a fledgling author, only 25, would ever be good enough to be nominated for an Edgar. After all these years, eight novels later, it’s a thrill to see that first tale getting some respect."

4 comments:

pattinase (abbott) said...

Woodrell's story should have won that year. And Crider's story was amazing in DAMN NEAR DEAD. He just wrote a great one for Walmart: I Love You. Hope it sees the light of day
Haven't read John Hart, but I guess I should. He must be pretty damned good.

Alison said...

Patty, John Hart is stupendous. The Last Child destroyed me, in a good way.

And David, congratulations!!!

Judy Bobalik said...

Hart did not win the Edgar for The King of L.ies only for Down River

David Thompson said...

Yikes, you're right! How did I screw that up... shame on me. Thanks, Ms. Bobalik. :-)