Tag Archives: Jim Thompson

BASEMENT – Silver Billy’s Dilemma

7 Dec

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“The first day I could tell my prisoner didn’t want to be bothered,” said Shirley. “So I fed him and left him alone. He’s pretty quiet. They got him for passing bad checks over in Doyle’s Crossing. I got lucky compared to some of the prisoners they handed out.”

“I heard some stories, too,” said Louis. “They sent one prisoner back to Wellington already. He took a bowel movement and flung it at Silver Billy.”

“I don’t blame that convict one bit,” said Smitty. “I heard Billy had his basement made up to look like a prison, with gray walls and everything. He even got himself a guard’s uniform. Worst of all, he found out what they cooked in the cafeteria down the Well and fed his prisoner the same grub. Billy wouldn’t even let the guy smoke.” Smitty looked personally offended. “Billy’s a damn fool—he could have made some real money.”

Louis nodded. “Silver Billy was always strange.”

 

From my novel BASEMENT, available on Amazon

(If you’ve read Basement, I’d really benefit from a review on Amazon)

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Coleman’s Blues – From BASEMENT

22 Oct

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Coleman leaned back against the park bench and ran his hand down his mid-section. At least he wasn’t fat. Husky, yes, but certainly not fat. And Lord be praised he still had all his hair. Even so, women took no notice of him. He lacked something, but he was hard-pressed to put a name to it. Try as he might, he couldn’t imagine women whispering about him as he walked by. It had been a sad morning several years ago, when looking into the mirror he’d been forced to admit that he was nothing special. For days afterwards it was all he could think of. He’d walk down the street furtively looking at every man he passed, wondering if the guy was special or not. Most guys were just like him, doomed to wear windbreakers from Sears. But Coleman saw others who did stand out. Men whose bearing announced that the world was theirs and they were going to enjoy every minute of it. These were the men Coleman envied.

 

From my novel BASEMENT, available on Amazon (If you’ve read Basement, I’d really benefit from a review on Amazon).

Vernell from BASEMENT

23 Sep

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Smitty stood at the top of the basement stairs, clutching the doorframe. He leaned into the darkness and yelled, “I ain’t coming down. I ain’t coming down. I ain’t coming down!”
A rough voice said, “You better get your ass down here. You call this food? Boiled potatoes, macaroni and milk? I’ll have me a lawyer down here you don’t get me some real food.”
“That’s all I have in the kitchen.”
“You heard of stores? Get your ass to the store and get me some food.”
“I don’t have any money.”
“Then come down here and get some from me. I’ll be damned if I got to eat your soggy-assed food. And turn on a motherfucking light. I want a light on twenty-four hours a day.”
“You’re awful demanding for a convict.”
“You got that right. I’m a convict. Don’t you forget it.”
Smitty flicked the light switch and timidly descended the stairs. Vernell Thomas, a young black man puffy around the eyes, stood holding onto the bars of his unit. Vernell was doing time for his third DUI in five months.
“Old man,” Vernell began, “In the Well, money talks. I got no problem with the system. Everybody’s got to get by. And I understand you temporarily being out of food, and that it won’t happen again. I understand.”
“Understand what?”
Vernell pointed at the plate of macaroni and potatoes. “Understand that you ain’t going to feed me shit like this.”

From my novel BASEMENT, available on Amazon

Joe from BASEMENT

12 Sep

 

Joe Basin

“Lisette,  If you think you’re about to do it with a guy, make him use a condom.”

“I’ll be careful, dad.”

“Good. Sex is a messy business. Lisette, I can’t afford to support any grandchildren. And when you’re dating, don’t undervalue the guy having money. There’s nothing wrong with marrying up. Now, when are you moving out?”

“The end of the month if I find a job.”

“Can you type?”

“Of course. I’ve been typing since the sixth grade.”

“I thought so. That’ll land you a job. Stay away from the dirty jobs—food handling, laundry, baby-sitting. Aim a little higher. Maybe something in real estate.”

“I’ll take anything as long as it pays the bills.”

“Well,” Joe said. “If you can stomach one more piece of advice from your dad I’ll give it to you.”

“What’s that?”

Joe nodded his head sagely. “Don’t aim too high. That way you might have a chance of making it.”

 

From my novel BASEMENT, available on Amazon

 

 

Shame from BASEMENT

6 Sep

 

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Mike sat on the edge of his bunk in the semi-darkness. Slim and pale, his head gave the impression of being too large for his body. Shirley had noticed that he always wore a white dress shirt, though it was frayed and hopelessly soiled at the cuffs. The few times she had seen him out of his chair he walked as though his feet hurt. As far as Shirley could tell, whole days passed without Mike even turning on the light in his cell.

“Why do you sit here in the dark?” asked Shirley. “Are you angry about being locked up?”

Mike shook his head, “I’m not angry. It’s a lot worse than that.” Mike looked down at his Thom McCann brogans. “You know, it’s funny. When you’re a kid and someone says, ‘You ought to be ashamed of yourself,’ you never are. It’s talk, nothing more. And then, when it finally comes to you, real shame, I don’t think there’s anything worse.”

 

From my novel BASEMENT, available on Amazon

Smitty

3 Sep

 

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The electric drill whirred and buzzed as the final screw was sunk into a corner joint of Smitty’s Porto-Unit. Smitty and Coleman stepped back to admire their handiwork. The state issue furnishings were basic: a chair, bed, table and dresser. A tiny chemical toilet sat in one corner.
Coleman rapped a steel bar with his knuckles. “Looks tight as a drum.”
“Better be,” said Smitty. “This isn’t something you take lightly. In some ways, this little house of mine is going to be like a country. With one king and one other fella.”

From my novel BASEMENT, available on Amazon

B A S E M E N T — Novel — Mark Rogers

27 Aug

 

Jail Front

Greenburg was like a lot of northeastern towns. It was bankrupt, ugly and filled with ignorant people. The healthy ones fled and the maimed, in-bred and elderly stayed behind. Businesses failed. Job lot stores, secondhand shops and filthy, dimly lit restaurants did their best to extract nickels and dimes from the populace. If a newspaper was blowing and tumbling down Main Street in a humid wind, it was more often than not the National Enquirer.
But Greenburg had something that other more successful towns didn’t: a preponderance of basements with high ceilings.

When a working class town in the northeast gets their fill of foreclosures and seizures, they turn to an experimental program that promises to put cash in their pockets: Housing non-violent offenders in portable jail cells in citizens’ basements.

A reader said BASEMENT unspools like, “… a combination of Elmore Leonard and The Simpsons.’

http://www.amazon.com/Basement-ebook/dp/B00EPPYYSU/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1377566183&sr=8-2&keywords=Basement+mark+Rogers

 

My novel BASEMENT is available on Amazon

24 Aug

BASEMENT cover final

Most of my blog Pissing on my Pistols has concerned my attempt to become a Hollywood screenwriter in 2005-2006. The blog is going to shift to the present. I’ve just published a novel titled BASEMENT.  it’s available as an ebook on Amazon, for $3.99.

The Jones’ have a prisoner in their basement.

So do the Smiths.

Times are tough. When a working class town in the northeast gets their fill of foreclosures and seizures, they turn to an experimental program that promises to put cash in their pockets: Housing non-violent offenders in portable jail cells in citizens’ basements.

Sounds like a great idea.

Sex is rampant. Racism is off the charts. Every misstep is compounded by sociopathic Mayor Bob, who makes sure every family gets the prisoner that can do the most damage to the family bosom.

On the outskirts is Coleman, a lonely man who is fuming because his house is a summer bungalow without a basement. It’s an election year and Coleman goes up against Mayor Bob, against an imprisoned background of lust, alky blues, imminent suicide and degenerate optimism.

Let the games begin.

A reader said BASEMENT unspools like, “… a combination of Elmore Leonard and The Simpsons.”