First Review of The Dead Hand

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Writing is a lonely pursuit. You spend all those hours on your own, writing and rewriting your novel, hoping that it's working, hoping that your readers will enjoy it, worrying that maybe you're kidding yourself, that maybe you're producing the literary equivalent of the Hollywood bomb. Thus nothing makes an author ...

Fire Birds: An Israeli Murder Mystery Film (June 7, 2016)

Murder mystery writer introduces murder mystery film to murder mystery fans at this year's St. Louis Jewish Film Festival. The writer is me. The film is Fire Birds. And if you're a fan of the noire mystery movie--a rich tradition that dates back to such classics as The Maltese Falcon and The Third Man while ...

A Fun Conversation with Author Jonathan Watkins

We authors are accustomed to being the interviewees, i.e., the ones giving the answers to the questions. Thus it was a pleasure to settle down with fellow attorney-author Jonathan Watkins and finally get to ask some of the questions I've often wished an interviewer would ask me. And it was even ...

More Monkey Business: Copyright and the World’s Most Famous Monkey Selfie

In my other life as an intellectual property lawyer, I receive almost weekly proof that copyright law is the gift that goes on giving. This time it's in the form of the world's most famous monkey selfie, which first surfaced, in this blog and others, last year when an earlier copyright ...

The Donald, the Orangutan and Me: A Little Monkey Business

As a lawyer by day and an author at night, I've had times when the realm of fiction intersects with the realm of reality. One example, gleaned from my years representing newspapers and publishers, is the law of libel, where the jury must decide whether the allegedly defamatory statement is ...

The Big Lebowski Meets The Big Sleep

The other night I settled down to watch "The Big Lebowski," a terrific Coen brothers film that features three of my favorite actors (Jeff Bridges, John Goodman, and Steve Buscemi) playing three of my favorite characters (the Dude, Walter Sobchek, and Donny Kerabatsos). The Dude, Donny, and Walter I'd last watched ...