Tuesday, March 26, 2013

The Rogue Lawman Will Be Riding Again Soon!

This is the cover for the new, never-before-published Rogue Lawman novel which Mean Pete will be publishing himself in about two months.  It finds Gideon Hawk dealing some frontier justice to some gold-stealing owl hoots in the Superstition Mountains, as a favor to young Mexican woman from Apache Junction.


Thursday, March 21, 2013

Rogue Lawman Kickstarter Project!

Gideon's sort of like Mean Pete that way.  But instead of standing on his front porch shaking his fist at the neighbor kids, Gideon Hawk employs the use of his Colt and Russian .44s...not to mention one hell of a badass attitude that by comparison make's Mean Pete look like Captain Kangaroo. 

Anyway, this is the poster for the film project we hope to have up and rolling at Kickstarter.com soon.  Producers Peter Lefevre and Nick Allan of Propeller Productions are putting the whole thing together out in LA.  

The script, based on my short-story "The Lonely Widow," (avail. for 99 cents at Amazon and B&N) was penned by Hollywood director, screenwriter, and cinematographer Dermott Downs.  Dermott's directed many television shows and been the director of photography on such series as CSI and Bones.  He did a hell of a job on the script.  I was tittering in my beer as I read the thing all the way through and then read her again.

The crux of the matter is this:  We're putting this project up on Kickstarter to lure investors--small-time, medium-time, big-time.  We'd like to film this as the pilot to a proposed television series called ROGUE LAWMAN.  But we need financial help in doing it.  Your help, if you've a dime to spare the unwashed and needy.  Or if you're a fan of the series and/or would just plain love to see a slam-bam action western series on televeision again.  

And about the investing, I mean that literally--a dollar or two or ten or twenty or a hundred here or there will get her done, and we'll be able to film this script as a pilot and hopefully entice one of the tv networks to run it as a series.

And if you ask me, it's about time we get another western tv series up and running!  Been a long time since we've had one on regular-like.  A long-running one like Gunsmoke or High Chaparral.  (Remember those?!)

ROGUE LAWMAN will be very much like those but with a dark, violent, sexy contemporary edge. But if you've read any of the Rogue Lawman novels (all available at Amazon and elsewhere, by the way--wink-wink) you already know that.

I'll let you know when this goes live at Kickstarter and then you can get it from the horse's mouth what's in the investment for you.  But I will say that if you fork over enough dinero, you might get to sit around a bubbly pool with Mean Pete hisself and some umbrella drinks and Mean Pete's own covey of scantily clad, Stetson-wearing starlets... 

But don't quote me on that.

Gotta run.  Kate Upton just walked in.  (I think she wants a part in the pilot.)  "Kate, honey, would you mind fetchin' Mean Pete a beer so he don't have to hoist his old bones out of this comfortable chair?  Thanks, honey.  Much appreciated.  Hey, is that a new bikini..?"

Mean Pete His Own Nasty Self (oh...and his sidekick)

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Mean Pete's Spring Cleaning .99 Cent Sale!

Mean Pete has marked all of his Ben Stillman novels and the first two Rogue Lawman novels down to .99 cents.  He's trying to get his virtual shelves cleaned off so he can make some more virtual books.

So go on down to the virtual spinner racks at Amazon and rob Mean Pete blind.  He can't get any meaner!  While you're there, preorder his next Frank Leslie novel, BAD JUSTICE, a Colter Farrow yarn.  It'll be out on April 3!

Gidyup, pards!



Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Dealt the Devil's Hand Now Available!

The second Lou Prophet book, finally an ebook that you can purchase through Amazon and elsewhere, is now available from the great Piccadilly Press!  This came out in paperback about twelve years ago and hasn't been available since then...until now.

It's only 2.99.  So go on over to Amazon or Barnes and Noble or Smashwords and pick Mean Pete's pockets.  Hey, he can't get any meaner!

The next new Lou Prophet will be out in June from Berkley.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Mean Pete Recommends Rancho Diablo!

These days, some of the best writing is being published independently, and this is a wonderful indie western series penned by three terrific writers--Mel Odom, Bill Crider, and James Reasoner.  If you haven't sampled the series yet, now is a great time to start, because the first book, SHOOTER'S CROSS, is free today and tomorrow for Kindle.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

A Mean Pete Book Proposal

Writing proposals that catch an editor's eye is a damn tough thing to do.  Over the years of hammering away at it, I've come upon a formula that works pretty well.  And that is to make the proposal almost as entertaining as the first pages of the book itself.  Make it smooth and dramatic and colorful enough that no editor who reads it and knows good writing and the makings of an exciting yarn could possibly turn it down.

I figure the best way to illustrate this is to post one of my own proposals.  This is a recent pitch that has not yet been sold (though I have had an offer on it), as I'm still trying to find a new home for my Frank Leslie novels, since I recently haven't been able to agree on terms with Signet.  So here's my brainstorm for a book that pairs up two of my favorite and most popular western heroes...or maybe I should say anti-heroes...the half-breed Yakima Henry and the young redheaded pistoleer, Colter Farrow.

If you're a writer, I hope you find it useful if not inspiring.  If you're an editor in the market for the next big western, send an offer Mean Pete can't refuse in a limo with a good-lookin' starlet, a bottle of coffin varnish, and some sandwiches, an' we'll talk in the morning...


A Western Proposal

By Frank Leslie
(Peter Brandvold)

The half-breed adventurer Yakima Henry has a bounty on his head.  Apparently, the man who’d been roughing up a whore in the brothel Yakima was cooling his heels in was a deputy sheriff with a stable full of loyal amigos.  Yakima wishes he’d known that before he shot the man though it probably wouldn’t have made much difference.  The hombre had needed killing.

With hot lead and drumming hooves warming his backtrail, Yakima heads for Mexico for some rest and relaxation.  Likely, several years worth, and that’s all right with him.  He has nowhere else to go, nothing else to do.  Things hadn’t worked out with the woman he’d met in Wyoming (see Dead Man’s Trail, Signet 2012).  Lasting love hasn’t so far been in the cards for Yakima Henry.  He could use a warm winter with a sweet senorita along the shores of the Sea of Cortez.

Meanwhile, Colter Farrow--the young, red-headed pistolero who wears a nasty S-brand on his cheek compliments of the sheriff of Sapinero up in Colorado Territory (see The Guns of Sapinero, Signet 2010) has an even larger bounty on his head.  Young Colter not only killed the man who branded him but he’s been framed for the murders of another pair of U.S. marshals.

Colter, too, decides to drag his ass down to Mexico, only he does so in a storm of dust and hot lead with a whole pack of bounty hunters barking at his heels.  When the scar-faced gunslinger crosses the Rio Bravo and finds a night’s solace in the arms of beautiful senorita, he lands himself in even more trouble. 

The senorita didn’t tell Colter that her father was a Rurale captain who’d been bound and determined that his daughter retain her virginity until she married the man of the captain’s dreams.

On the run once more, Colter runs into Yakima Henry.  Since they’re like-minded and share similar problems, they decide to team up and head to Baja together.  Not even the craftiest bounty hunter could track them across the Mojave Desert.

Only, when the pair makes it to Baja, they run into a mad Irishman and former General in the U.S. Cavalry.  General Ciaran Yeats’s crazy dream, influenced by baconora as well as marijuana, is to carve his own private empire out of the Mexican State of Sonora.

Yakima Henry and Colter Farrow, down on their luck, pockets empty, agree to work for a wealthy hacendado, Frederico de la Paz, whose hacienda has been plundered for gold and weapons--as well as his daughter Alejandra.  The patron wants Yakima and Colter--both of whose impressive reputations have made their ways to de la Paz--to find the gang, led by a gringo in U.S. Cavalry gear, that attacked his ranch and kidnapped his daughter.

Yakima and Colter follow the marauders’ trail to the old Mexican prison that has been taken over by Yeats and his small army of kill-crazy cutthroats.  Some of the most vicious pistoleros on either side of the border, Yeats’s gang is comprised of Americanos, Mexicans, half-breeds, blacks, and everything in between.

The General calls his fortress Castillo de Luna, Fortress on the Moon. (The landscape is decidedly moon-like.)

Outnumbered seventy-to-two, Yakima and Colter decide that the only way they have a shot of getting the gold, the weapons, and the girl is to join Yeats’s ranks and destroy his army from within.  Only, the odds get even steeper when they discover that young Alexandra has no desire to be freed from her captors.  In fact, she hadn’t been “captured” at all.  She’d gone willingly with the General’s gang.  She intends to marry General Yates despite his being nearly as old as her father--she’s intoxicated by money, power, and marijuana--and live as his queen once they’ve wrestled Sonora away from the Mexican Army.

But when the lusty, ravishing girl falls in love with Yakima and tries to convince the powerful, gun-handy half-breed to double-cross the General, so she and he can rule Sonora together, a chinking in the General’s army reveals itself.  And it’s one that Yakima and Colter decide to exploit most thoroughly...with the help of a Gatling gun and several hundred pounds of dynamite.

In the end, Castillo de Luna a smoking ruin behind them, Yakima and Colter head back north to Don de la Paz with the guns, the gold, and the girl tied to her saddle and cursing like a hard-rock miner.

Blood on the Border, like all of my other seventy-plus novels, will be kick-ass action from front to back, with a gripping, unrelenting pace and characters that vault right off the page!

Who Is Frank Leslie?

Peter Brandvold has penned over 70 fast-action westerns under his own name and his penname, Frank Leslie.  He is the author of the ever-popular .45-Caliber books featuring Cuno Massey as well as the Lou Prophet and Yakima Henry novels.  Recently, Berkley published his horror/western, Dust of the Damned, featuring ghoul-hunter Uriah Zane.  Head honcho at “Mean Pete Publishing,” publisher of harrowing western ebooks, he lives in Colorado.  Visit his website at www.peterbrandvold.com.  Follow his blog at: www.peterbrandvold.blogspot.com.

Mean Mary

Fittingly I suppose, Mean Pete has been listening to Mean Mary (no known relation) after a long, hard, mean day's writin' work.  

This girl can pick and croon like few Mean Pete has ever heard before.  All I know about her is that she's from Florida and she and her brother, Frank James, play together.  "Mean" Mary James is right up there with Bobbi Gentry and Tammy Wynette though a whole lot better with a guitar and banjo.  Listening to her makes me want to sit out on the stoop in the silky Southern air with a jar of sour mash and a blue tick hound snoozing at my feet.  Maybe just get up of a sudden and dance a jig and howl at the powder horn horn rising over the misty ridges.

In Mean Pete's book, Mean Mary rocks.  Er...picks!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Mean Pete Writing Tip: Islands in the Stream

Normally, opening with description is a static, dead, dull thing to do.  It's the death of openings.    

But that's really only because description in the hands of mere mortals doesn’t usually leap off the page and wrap a fist around your brain and show you a scene as clearly and vibrantly as it does here in the hands of Ernest Hemingway.  This isn’t the very opening of Hemingway’s ISLANDS IN THE STREAM, but it’s only a few paragraphs in. 

When you can write with this kind of lens-like clarity, so that the page you’re reading is even clearer than the world you’re reading it in, you can do any damn thing you want.

I’ve learned a lot from this book and from everything Hemingway wrote, including what's considered the not-so-good stuff.  What I always thought was striking about this piece of writing was not only all the razor-edged nouns and verbs painting the pictures, but the rhythm of the sentences:           

He had a big pile of driftwood stacked against the south wall of the house.  It was whitened by the sun and sand-scoured by the wind and he would become fond of different pieces so that he would hate to burn them.  But there was always more driftwood along the beach after the big storms and he found it was fun to burn even the pieces he was fond of.  He knew the sea would sculpt more, and on a cold night he would sit in the big chair in front of the fire, reading by the lamp that stood on the heavy plank table and look up while he was reading to hear the northwester blowing outside and the crashing of the surf and watch the great, bleached pieces of driftwood burning.

Sometimes he would put the lamp out and lie on the rug on the floor and watch the edges of color that the sea salt and the sand in the wood made in the flame as they burned.  On the floor his eyes were even with the line of the burning wood and he could see the line of the flame when it left the wood and it made him both sad and happy.  All wood that burned affected him in this way.  But burning driftwood did something to him that he could not define.  He thought that it was probably wrong to burn it when he was so fond of it; but he felt no guilt about it.

As he lay on the floor he felt under the wind although, really, the wind whipped at the corners of the house and at the lowest grass on the island and into the roots of the sea grass and the cockleburs and into the sand itself.  On the floor he could feel the pounding of the surf the way he remembered feeling the firing of heavy guns when he had lain on the earth close by some battery a long time ago when he had been a boy.

The fireplace was a great thing in winter and through all the other months he looked at it with affection and thought how it would be when winter came again.  Winter was the best of all seasons on the island and he looked forward to it through all the rest of the year.