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Edel Rodriguez's "Fire and Fury" cover that should've been.

…Tori Telfer’s Lady Killers (but not before dropping it into a bathtub full of water), so I figured I’d start off 2018 with, duh, Michael Wolff’s Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House.

I know there is speculation over the book’s complete accuracy, but here’s how I look at it: If even only 10% of what’s inside is true, it’s still shocking. And appalling. And gross.

The actual cover design of the book is shit, so instead I decided to post Cuban-born artist Edel Rodriguez’s take on what he would’ve done with the cover. Edel is responsible for many of TIME‘s recent Trump covers. Check out his work here, and then learn more about his cover illustrations here.

I enjoy a good mix of both fact and fiction,



"Lady Killers" by Tori Telfer.

The Choking Doberman and Other Urban Legends, and have decided to end 2017 with a book our good friend Milan recently gave to KB: Lady Killers by Tori Telfer, a book about the deadliest women in history. #Feminism

Because who doesn’t want to read about female murderers during Christmas!

Merry AXE-MAS,


Mr. Mercedes, and am now on to a book about urban legends called The Choking Doberman and Other Urban Legends by Jan Harold Brunvand.

"The Choking Doberman and Other Urban Legends" by Jan Harold Brunvand.

Actually, in between those two books I quickly read The World’s Shortest Stories.

"The World's Shortest Stories" edited by Steve Moss.

Edited by the late Steve Moss, this book collects extremely short stories from a wide range of authors. And I mean “short” as in “each story clocks in at (or under) 55 words,” which looks like this:

"Bedtime Story" by Jeffrey Whitmore.

Obviously, this is why I flew through it in an hour.

My good friend Jamie gave me this book for Christmas in 1998 (back when she was my good girlfriend Jamie), but I couldn’t remember if ever actually read it so I decided to give it a quick read.

Reading this book reminded me of a short story I wrote a few years ago called Robin’s Permanent Life-Change. I can’t remember why I wrote it other than the fact that the idea for it was sparked by my Aunt Robin. It doesn’t come in under the 55-word limit that the book requires of its stories, but at only 81 words it’s still pretty damn short. Check it out:

Robin’s Permanent Life-Change

Robin’s perm had been sitting on top of her head since Jimmy Carter sat in the Oval Office. She didn’t care what current trends dictated or close friends thought; she loved her perm, and she especially enjoyed the time she spent with Gladys, her hairstylist of nearly 35 years.

But when Gladys died suddenly of heart disease, Robin made a decision that would change her life forever: she would finally begin construction on the time machine she had designed decades earlier.

Anyway, I might be able to cram one more book into 2017, but we’ll see.

Maybe I’ll read the Bible for Christmas,


Stephen King's "Mr. Mercedes."

…Elie Wiesel’s Night quickly, and I’m now about halfway through Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King.

This book is a bit of a departure for me in that I don’t read a lot of fiction, and even when I do it’s never Stephen King. Not that I dislike King, I genuinely enjoy his work, but for whatever reason I haven’t read a King novel in nearly 25 years.

Other than reading through Night Shift for a second time a few years ago (after I bought it for Kathy for… something), I haven’t read a King book since he released Dolores Claiborne in 1992.

Mr. Mercedes also seems to be a departure for King himself who, with Mr. Mercedes, is straying from the horror genre he is primarily known for and instead trying his hand at a fairly straightforward detective novel.

We’ll see how the second half shakes out, but if it keeps me intrigued (or surprises me) I may check out the other two books in the trilogy.

Thinking about what I should end 2017 with,


Elie Wiesel's "Night."

…and I’m finished with the book about it, so now I’m on to Elie Wiesel’s Night which, somehow, I’ve never read.

This’ll be a quick one,


…through Blatty’s Legion, so now I’m on to this:

"Halloween: From Pagan Ritual to Party Night" by Nicholas Rogers.

Figured it was appropriate for the season.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year,


So good, and barely any exclamation points.

Legion by William Peter Blatty, which is a brillion times better than this turd.

Legion is the official sequel to Blatty’s The Exorcist, and the book was later adapted to become the third film in the series. (Exorcist II barely counts as a film, let alone a sequel… trust me.)

Both The Exorcist and The Exorcist III hold up as genuinely terrifying films, but this book is an absolutely fantastic read all on its own. Pick up a copy and give it a read if you’re looking to get into the Halloween spirit a little early this year.

This more than makes up for Jay! Anson!,


Jay Anson's "The Amityville Horror."

…which, in case you haven’t been able to tell, sucked.

As a kid, I loved the movie that this book was based on. Sadly, the movie no longer holds up, but I was hoping the source material would at least be somewhat scary. It isn’t. The main reason? Because, for whatever reason, author Jay Anson loved! Writing! In! All! Exclamation! Points!

I felt like a teenager was screaming the book at me the entire time I read it. Here is an exact transcription of an excerpt from the book:

“She felt the radiator. It was hot!”

Really, dude? It was that hot?

So, yeah. Huge disappointment.

I decided to drop this literary number-two back into the same little free library in our neighborhood that I picked it out of a few weeks ago. But before I did, I updated the cover with a more accurate representation of what was inside.

Jay! Anson's! "The!" "Amityville!" "Horror!"

I’ve! Read! Less! Emphatic! High! School! Love! Letters!,


"Writing Movies for Fun and Profit" by Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant.

Writing Movies for Fun and Profit by Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant.

My good friend Ryan gave me this book years ago, long before the Black List Live! read of Saving Charlie Chaplin that Lennon was a part of, but at that point I was desperately trying to take a break from reading “how to” books about screenwriting, and instead concentrate on figuring out my own method and style.

By then, I had had my fill of Robert McKee and saving the cat, and so I decided it was time to stop reading about how to do something, and just do it already.

I made a horrible mistake. I should’ve read this book sooner.

I’m only about 100 pages in, but it’s both a hilarious and (sometimes depressingly) accurate look at this insane industry, as told from the perspective of two guys who actually live it each and every day. If you’re an aspiring screenwriter—or even an established one—be sure to check it out.

Ryan was right,


D.J. Kirkbride's "The Amelia Cole Omnibus" is out now!

…released The Amelia Cole Omnibus last month through IDW Publishing.

It’s huge! Literally! It’s, like, 500 pages! Bigger than a bible! And in full color!

Get! Your! Copy! Now!


Also, my other good friend Frank Cvetkovic did lettering, so that’s awesome, too.

Get on it,