Huzzah! Spinetingler Nomination!

I am very proud to announce that Roachkiller and Other Stories has been nominated for a 2013 Spinetingler Award in the category of Best Anthology/Short Story Collection. Now I need my fans—both of you—to vote for me to win. Click the big VOTE HERE on this page. On the first page, scroll all the way down and you’ll see where to start. Roachkiller is on the fourth category page. As you’ll see, I’m up against some pretty tough competition, including Beat to a Pulp 2: Round 2; Crime Factory: Hard Labour; Lonely No More by Seymour Shubin; Red Heads Die Quickly by Gil Brewer; Short Stack; Sleepwalking by Ray Nayler; Shotgun Honey Presents: Both Barrels (vol 1); Shoebox Train Wreck by John Mantooth; and Ugly Behavior by Steve Rasnic Tem. It’s intimidating and wonderful to be in such talented company. At the same time, it means I need your help! Run by Spinetingler Magazine, the Spinetingler is one of the most prestigious web-based awards for mystery fiction. They are open about the fact that one of the goals of the awards is to increase exposure for some books and authors, and that this can be a factor in nomination. Vote! Vote now!

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Out of the Gutter — and in Paperback

Mami warned me to stay out of the gutter. Too late!

The latest issue of Out of the Gutter is out in paperback, and I’ve got a story in it. It’s called “To Mistress,” and,  it may best be described as BDSM noir. It was a small idea I’d had for a while, but I was inspired to finish it after reading about the murder of Brittany Killgore, which exposed a local bondage community to unwanted attention.

Out of the Gutter 8 contains “the most popular pieces posted this year at Out of the Gutter Online, as well as the editors’ personal favorites and several brand new stories with a digital age theme, written just for this issue. With the material separated into flash fiction and longer pieces, Out of the Gutter remains the perfect companion when you’re on the go and looking for a fast, cheap thrill.”

Edited by Matthew Louis, Joe Clifford, and Court Merrigan, the issue also contains stories by: Nicola Murphy, David Corbett, Les Edgerton, Matthew C Funk, Jen Conley,  Ryan TheWalnuts Sayles, Isaac Kirkman, Mike Monson, and David James Keaton. The book is also available for Kindle.

Check out this excerpt from my story:

To Mistress
I did this for you because you would have made me do it.
      On December 5, you were found dead in your home. It was on the news, a picture of you smiling over a birthday cake. “Mom of 3 Bludgeoned to Death.” I recognized your face. “Donna Hornak.” That was your name. A pretty name, almost musical.
      Don’t worry — I will never say it out loud.
      Someone broke in and beat your skull open. Nothing was stolen. You were divorced. The police suspected your ex-husband. But he was two states away with your kids. So far there are no other suspects.
      In the kitchen last night, my wife said to me, “Manuel, you still haven’t told me where you want to go for the holidays. My mother’s on my back.”
      “Yes,” I said. “What’s wrong with you? We have to tell her soon.”
      I went to the basement, and Mayra called after me, “And we have to finish the Christmas list.”
      I locked the door, turned on the computer, and looked at pictures you took of me. Gagged. Hooded. Tied. You weren’t in any of the photographs but you held the camera.
      I waited until the wife turned the TV on before taking down my pants.

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Guest Blog @ Pulp Curry

In which I guest blog at Andrew Nette’s Pulp Curry. Nette is the author of Ghost Money, a crime novel set in Cambodia, 1996. I’ve yet to read but it awaits me on my Kindle. In my guest blog, I wax on about my entrance in the world of crime fiction. Here is an excerpt.

  • About a decade ago, I was like a lot of writers: I talked about writing but I didn’t scribble a single story. Not a sentence, not a dependent clause, not a word. Then at some point I read a notice from Mississippi Review calling for postmodern noir stories. I had no idea what the hell they meant by that, but I was intrigued by the opportunity, and also my girlfriend at the time wanted me to do something with whatever meager talent she perceived in me.
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Attention: Free Roachkiller!

Roachkiller and Other Stories is FREE today, gratis, costing nada y pues nada y, well, you get the picture, on Amazon. My short story “Hurricane,” a sample from the collection, is also free today, just FYI.

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An Unequivocal Rave for Roachkiller

Roachkiller and Other Stories received a great review in the latest issue of Crime Factory. Thanks to them and to Eva Dolan for her generous review. Here’s an excerpt:

  • Narvaez has a poet’s delight in phrasing and writes with an easy kind of grace, unforced, unhurried, letting his character’s lives unravel at their own pace. And almost without exception they do unravel, circumstances take unexpected turns, good people find wells of darkness inside themselves, double and triple crosses pile up . . . . Roachkiller is an accomplished debut from an author in full and firm control of his voice. Narvaez is definitely a name to watch.
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Get Noirier

Once again I’ll be reading as part of the famous Noir at the Bar series, on Sunday, September 9, 6 p.m., once again at Shade, 241 Sullivan Street, NYC. Other readers include Cindy “Raucous” Rosmus, Alison “Wonderland” Gaylin, Terrence “I Want to be Cuban” McCauley, “Jersey” Jen Conley, Gilbert “Crime” King, “Aweseome”Al Tucher, Jason “Super” Starr, “Gentlemanly” Glenn G. Gray, and, of course, “Teddy Bear” Todd Robinson. Once again, come for the beer, if not the noir!

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Review of “Ending in Paumanok” and Long Island Noir

New World Review just posted a review of Long Island Noir, calling the climax of my story “Ending in Paumanok” “partly poetic justice and deeply disturbing”:

  • Extortion is also the main event in the R. Narvaez story, “Ending in Paumanok.” Here a Stony Brook University professor coerces her brother-in-law into giving her money. She’s being squeezed, in turn, by one of her students who is also her lover. She might be the academic, but the author makes it clear that she’s not as smart as she thinks. The story has ironic twists. It’s difficult to differentiate between the victims and the victimizers. The climax is partly poetic justice and deeply disturbing.

Read the entire review here.

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