‘Born in legendary England, but having sojourned in Poland for some time, Brit-Grit author Paul D. Brazill typically pens what he calls “screwball noir.” His writing has been translated into Italian, Finnish, Polish, German and Slovene. His work has also been published in various magazines and anthologies, including The Mammoth Books of Best British Crime.
Back in the day, Mr. Brazill graciously provided content for Out of the Gutter Online’s Brit Grit Alley—bringing diehard readers news about British crime fiction’s notorious booze and blood-soaked alleyways.
Mr. Messy Business Jason Beech—himself both born and forged in Sheffield, England (before audaciously making the move to Yank-filled-New Jersey-USA to teach a game that he calls “football”—but which parts of the world call SOCCER) decided to corral Mr. Brazill for a little tête-à-tête.
We hoped to bring you video footage … but the content proved way too graphic. So we’re sharing this heavily-edited transcript instead. Of course we had to kill the stenographer afterwards …. But that’s Life in The Gutter, eh.
Hi Paul. I’ve just finished Close to the Bone’s excellent short story anthology, A Time for Violence—edited by edgy U.S. crime writers Andy Rausch and Chris Roy. What attracted you to the anthology?
PDB: Really, just because the editors kindly asked me. I also wanted to write another story featuring Tommy Bennett from my book Last Year’s Man and thought it might work to put him in a story with very little violence. The story title—”Baby’s Got A Gun”—is from an old Only Ones LP.‘
Johnny Piper is raised and home-schooled by his strong and smart mother until his father returns home from the Korean War and things go awry.
Johnny is eventually sent off to fight in the Vietnam War leaving his boozing, gambling father to dig the family deeper into the mire.
James Shaffer’s Back To The World is his debut novella and it is as richly written as it is short and sharp, like a cross between Tobias Wolff and Jim Thompson.