Apr 182014
“It just smacked me in the face. At that time, every script, every book, everything that I was reading was—and still is—just there to be one thing. Every script, no matter how good it was, always felt like it was declaring what it was in the first five pages and just spending the next 85 or 115 fulfilling its own promise without ever really trying to do anything else. I was so struck by this story that seemed to do that but then would jerk into something else—and then into something else.”


Director-writer Jim Mickle on what it was like to read Joe Lansdale’s novel Cold In July, which Mickle has adapted into a movie.

Mickle’s put his finger on one of the things we love, love, love about Joe Lansdale: his virtuosic range, often within a single page.

Apr 032014

Yesterday I told Joe Lansdale that he must be the most productive person in the world. Not only has he written somewhere north of 40 novels, but he also emailed me a clip from the animated movie Son of Batman, for which he’s the screenwriter. And that’s only the tip of the iceberg as far as his in-addition-to-writing-novels career goes.

That irrepressible talent must run in the family, because I read that his daughter, Kasey Lansdale, has just been selected as the Country Music Association’s artist of the month. Read her debut spotlight here.

When Mulholland Books released Joe’s novel, Edge of Dark Water, in paperback last year, Kasey graciously recorded an accompanying song, which you can stream here.

To better understand how the Lansdales, père et fille, keep their wells of creativity full, listen to their interview with The Library Police.

(Photo courtesy of Joe O’Connell)

Mar 252014
The Drowned Man | Mulholland Books:


Joe Lansdale has profound insight in the writing life and its purpose.

Jan 282014



Cold In July, director Jim Mickle’s film adaptation of the Joe R. Lansdale novel, premiered Saturday night at the Sundance Film Festival and quickly received an abundance of excellent reviews.

  • "Certainly, COLD IN JULY is the most purely-entertaining film this year’s edition of the fest has yet to offer, and action fans will have a field day with this." (JoBlo)
  • "Mickle’s bracing sense of style and cinematographer Ryan Samul’s moody visuals keep it gripping until the final bullet is fired.” (The Hollywood Reporter)
  • Mickle and his team do some remarkably confident work here.” (Film Threat)
  • "Director Jim Mickle and his writing partner Nick Damici once again prove that ‘genre filmmaking’ is nothing to apologize for." (The Salt Lake Tribune)
  • "The flick looks great, the score is nice and big and it’s unlike anything I’ve seen, so it wins points all around." (Ain’t It Cool News)

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Congratulations to Lansdale! Do we really have to wait until the summer to see this movie?

Dec 192013
Sundance Film Festival: Looking at the U.S. Dramatic Competition program, is there a cohesion to this year’s slate of films similar to what we’ve seen in the past?
Director of Programming Trevor Groth: Another thing we noted this year is the use of genre elements in films throughout all of the sections. We've got riffs on horror, thrillers, musicals, sci-fi, even westerns, and you see that in the Dramatic Competition. Life After Beth, for example, fuses zombie and young love. Cold In July and Sleepwalker are both thrillers, which you might expect to see in Park City at Midnight, but they’re playing in Dramatic Competition.
Dec 162013



The Library Journal have announced their best books of the year, divided by categories. Frequent Tachyon contributor Joe R. Lansdale’s The Thicket ranked among the finest historical fiction.

Lansdale, Joe R. The Thicket. Mulholland: Little, Brown. ISBN 9780316188456 $26; ebk. ISBN 9780316248754.
In a matter of days, Jack Parker loses his parents to smallpox, his grandfather to murder, and his sister to kidnappers. With the help of a cunning bounty hunter and an ex-slave grave digger, he sets out on an epic journey across turn-of-the-20th-century East Texas to rescue his sister. A coming-of-age Western “laced with bravado, good humor, action, and heart.” (LJ 9/1/13)

Congratulations to Joe for the much deserved honor!

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Hear hear!

Oct 302013

Halloween is tomorrow, and we must know: what are you reading?

This week, we’re asking our scariest authors to recommend a terrifying read, and Joe Lansdale, author of The Thicket and Edge of Dark Water, says:

The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson is right up there at the top. I like all of her stuff that I’ve read, but this one, and the film made from it, are most likely my favorites. I like the graphic, the mild, the creepy, the insane, but this haunting, little, slow-reveal ghostly thriller is a gem.

So what about you? What’s your #halloweenreading?