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Two killers and one man losing it. Here are my picks for today's Featured Books.

Publishers Weekly has recognized Clay Stafford as playing "an essential role in defining which books become bestsellers" throughout "the nation's book culture." (PW 6/10/13)

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Click HERE for Clay Stafford's daily book reviews for Killer Nashville's Book of the Day
One of the Miracles: The Inge Meyring Smith Story
Killer Nashville Writers Conference

The Clay Stafford-founded international mystery, thriller, and suspense writers conference, Killer Nashville includes activities from Thursday through Sunday, August 21-24, 2014 in downtown Nashville's beautiful Hutton Hotel & Convention Center. Our Guests of Honor are Lisa Jackson & William Kent Krueger. The conference is open to all: readers, writers, fans, and forensics aficionados alike. According to Internet sources, the Killer Nashville writers conference has become the second largest mystery and thriller conference in the U.S. You can read more about Killer Nashville Writers' Conference here.

Stafford's Children's Classics Adapations a Million-Plus Bestseller
HuckleStafford goes beyond the million mark. Stafford’s retelling of “Huckleberry Finn,” “The Wind in the Willows,” “White Fang,” and “Swiss Family Robinson” have collectively sold over 1.5 million copies, have themselves appeared onscreen in the feature film “Must Love Dogs,” and have been translated into at least two foreign languages (Polish and Russian). Released in everything from traditional hardcover to faux leather to paperback, each book has illustrations (many color) on every page opening. The books are available from Big Box retailers such as Wal-Mart, Target, Sam’s Club, and Costco.
Jazz Maker Films


Not since 1981’s Ghost Story with Fred Astaire, Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., and Patricia Neal has critically acclaimed author Peter Straub seen his work on the big screen. This won’t be the case for long. Clay Stafford – through his companies American Blackguard Entertainment and Jazz Maker Films – has optioned the Straub-penned book “Pork Pie Hat.”

“Pork Pie Hat” is the story of the fictional jazz legend of the same name. Hat has never disclosed the unthinkable event he witnessed near the forbidden woods known as The Backs, even though the events of that Halloween night have tormented him since childhood. As Hat is sick now and nearing the end of a long slide through the depths of alcoholism and depression, the time has come for him to reveal what he saw and, more importantly, what he did.

Peter Straub is the New York Times bestselling author of seventeen novels, which have been translated into more than twenty languages. They include Ghost Story, Koko, Mr. X, In the Night Room, and two collaborations with Stephen King, The Talisman and Black House. He has written two volumes of poetry and two collections of short fiction, and he edited the Library of America’s edition of H.P. Lovecraft’s Tales. He has won the British Fantasy Award, seven Bram Stoker Awards, two International Horror Guild Awards, and two World Fantasy Awards. In 1998, he was named Grand Master at the World Horror Convention. In 2006, he was given the HWA’s Lifetime Achievement Award and was Killer Nashville’s 2011 Guest of Honor.

Clay Stafford is an award-winning and bestselling author, screenwriter, filmmaker, and songwriter. He has sold over 1.5 million hardcover copies of his children’s adaptations and has seen his film work distributed internationally in over fourteen languages. He has reviewed books, plays, and films and writes near-daily book reviews for Killer Nashville’s Featured Book of the Day. Some of Stafford’s projects also include the feature-length documentary, “One Of The Miracles: The Inge Meyring Smith Story,” and the music CD, “XO,” with fellow mystery writer Jeffery Deaver. Previously associated with Universal Studios and PBS, he is currently President / CEO of American Blackguard, an entertainment company in Nashville, Tennessee.

“I’ve long been a fan of Peter Straub,” says Clay Stafford. “He’s one of the best writers I know and certainly one of the most critically acclaimed. It’s been way overdue since someone told Peter’s stories on film. We’re about to change that.”

"One of the Miracles: The Inge Meyring Smith Story"


When filmmaker Clay Stafford set out to make a simple film about one woman's efforts to change the world one child at a time, he had no idea the reception it would receive. Set to premiere at a Franklin, Tennessee theater on April 18, 2013 in the hometown where the story takes place, the theater sold out nearly immediately. Another screening was scheduled. And now another. WAKM says it is "a thrilling and inspirational story." Williamson Herald calls it "harrowing." The Tennessean declares it "miraculous."

"One of the Miracles" is the personal story of Inge Meyring Smith, a Holocaust survivor and American Civil Rights early–education pioneer who became the light of learning for thousands of children in the American South. She survived yellow benches, the Nazis who killed her family, American prejudice, the Ku Klux Klan, and the march for racial equality.

During the German Holocaust, Inge's Jewish family barely escaped with their lives. Having only $15 in the family's pocket when they arrived in the U.S., Inge's family swore to survive. She moved to Tennessee. She had barely lived through yellow benches in Germany and what she saw in the South was segregated water fountains. "It was ignorance more than prejudice," she said, but she had seen from the extermination of her own family where prejudice and ignorance unchecked could lead. Hand–picked by the Kennedy/Johnson administration to help them develop a new national preschool education program called Head Start, Smith – a woman and a Jew – went South at peril again to her own life. Through her international efforts via independent school associations, out of her passion to reach children in unreachable parts of the U.S. as well as at her own backdoor, untold thousands of children have been inspired to learn through her efforts and those she has influenced over the past 70 years.

What's going to happen next with the film? Stafford doesn't know. "We've been humbled at the response. To us, it was clearly a story that needed to be told and recorded, but we never could have anticipated the response. As a result, we've had interest from several television distributors, but no final decision has yet been made." Like Inge, this film may have a life of its own. For more on this project please go to


Clay Stafford is delighted to announce "XO The Album," a country/pop music collaboration between bestselling literary authors Jeffery Deaver and himself upon Deaver's upcoming book, "XO".

The story centers around a young country/pop star who encounters a stalker along the way. The music on the album is co-written and produced by Clay. The complete album was released internationally for download on May 29, 2012. Physical CDs were released June 12, 2012 in conjunction with the release of the novel. Download a FREE full version of "Your Shadow" by completing the form below. For more information, check out our "XO The Album" website.


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