Strange Request at a Funeral Home

I published a book in 2001 called Cemetery Stories. We’re in the Halloween season, so this excerpt seems appropriate. I interviewed a lot of people for this book and one of my favorites tales features Father Massey, formerly an undertaker in Hollywood. While in college, he got a job in a funeral home to pay expenses, and when the owner offered him a full-time job if he went to mortuary school, he accepted. This was at a Jewish funeral home in Hollywood, and since he Continue reading →

The CIA’s Chain of Brothels

In my new novel, 7 Grams of Lead, the clandestine operations division of the Department of Commerce runs a international chain of whorehouses as a means of collecting intelligence. Early readers thought that this was over the top. If anything, it understates the CIA reality. But as my editor said, Doubleday can’t very well place authors’ phone numbers in the margins so that they can field questions and straighten out dubious readers. So I had to soften it. I will, however, publish the truth. Here. Continue reading →

Mythology in Modern Storytelling

Today my friend and talented writer, Janice Gable Bashman, is guest posting about a fun topic! Mythology in modern storytelling. Her debut thriller novel, PREDATOR, just released and is perfect for a spooky Halloween read full of werewolves, mythology, and bog bodies – all with a scientific twist! Mythology in Modern Storytelling By Janice Gable Bashman Myths and legends are important in modern storytelling. They have informed many stories throughout the years. For my novel PREDATOR, I investigated the werewolf folklore and found a way Continue reading →

A Life-Changer

In New York, following my first career as a comic-book artist/advertising illustrator, I’d been directing commercials and off-off-Broadway, plus making a few short films. I had discovered that I loved playing god, even studying for a time with Lee Strasberg. Deciding to give Hollywood a try, and knowing not a soul there, we moved west (my wife/encourager Holly and our two small kids). My plan: to direct a low-budget R-rated comedy movie as a calling-card. The story I’d come up with was based on an Continue reading →