Archive for the 'Rod Davis' Category

Rod Davis wins another award, for lifetime achievement serving veterans

Wednesday, August 2nd, 2017 by Randall Williams

In the years since 2003 when NewSouth Books published Rod Davis’s first novel, Corina’s Way, we have taken pride and pleasure in seeing him recognized in the literary community for his work as a writer, including as a book critic and columnist. Highlights of his career to date include receipt of a PEN/Southwest Award for Corina’s Way and his induction into the Texas Institute of Letters. Davis added a different kind of award to his portfolio last week, when he received the Bill Pearson Outstanding Lifetime Achievement Award from the Western Association of Veterans Education Specialists. A Vietnam Era vet, Davis co-founded and served as director of the Texas A&M University System’s Veterans Support Office (VSO). The award recognizes “individuals who have made outstanding contributions through constructive participation in veterans’ organizations, thus demonstrating a deep sense of caring for the veteran,” WAVES president Tracy Copeland told the Texas A&M University System News. The News notes that under Davis’s leadership, “the A&M System VSO provided coordination, communication and guidance to the system’s 11 universities and engaged in outreach on veteran education support issues throughout Texas and nation.” Congratulations to Rod on this most-deserved humanitarian honor.

Rod Davis and co-panelists kill it at State of the Book Crime Fiction panel

Friday, August 5th, 2016 by Lisa Harrison

South, America by Rod DavisThe panel, “Crime Fiction: The Genre of Dissent, Values and Codes of Conduct,” part of Gemini Ink’s State of the Book conference, was a great success even on a very hot Saturday afternoon in San Antonio. Part of the reason was the location of the retro-Latino hotel, El Tropicano, on the banks of the Riverwalk, and a lot of people in the crowded lobby and bar also attending a Shriner’s convention.

Rod Davis and his co-panelists Christopher Cook, author of Robbers and other crime and literary fiction, and Eusebio Diaz, vice president of the Baptist Health Foundation and an avid reader of classic crime and crime noir, took the audience of about 30 into an exploration of the evolution of crime and crime noir, and also the fundamental issues of right and wrong, crime and sin, and vengeance and justice that mark the country’s second most popular literary genre.

Rod and Christopher also discussed the need to avoid didactic messages and the value of making even the bad characters at least a little “good” to make then memorable characters. Rod, author of the critically-acclaimed crime noir, South, America, and the forthcoming Shoot When You Shoot, Die When You Die, explained how the addition of even small humanizing effects on the bad guys, along with flaws in the good guys, makes the conflict between them more dynamic.

The panel was based on audience interaction, which carried over into lengthy conversations following the presentations. Rod also got to visit with former San Antonio Express-News colleague Gregg Barrios, known for his plays Rancho Pancho and I-DJ and work with actor/poet James Franco. A number of authors from Texas and elsewhere also presented at the 4-day event, with closing remarks from Clay Smith, Editor in Chief of Kirkus Reviews and Literary Director of the San Antonio Book Festival.

South, America is available from NewSouth Books or your favorite bookstore.

Rod Davis, Gerald Duff inducted in Texas Institute of Letters

Wednesday, May 22nd, 2013 by Robert Carter

Texas Institute of LettersNewSouth authors Rod Davis and Gerald Duff join an illustrious list of writers — including Cormac McCarthy, J. Frank Dobie, Larry McMurtry, and Shirley Ann Grau — with their induction into the prestigious Texas Institute of Letters last month. They were among seven whose contributions as writers were recognized at the Texas Institute of Letters annual meeting and awards ceremony on April 6.

Rod Davis is author of Corina’s Way (NewSouth, 2003), winner of the PEN Southwest inaugural Award for Fiction, as well as other works including American Voudou. His next novel, South, America, is forthcoming from NewSouth Books. Mr. Davis is a longtime magazine editor and writer, formerly at The Texas Observer and D Magazine. An eighth-generation Texan, Rod Davis lives in College Station.

“It was a great honor to become part of an organization with a long history of representing such a distinguished group of writers, whose works reach far beyond the Texas border,” said Davis. He continued, “I think sometimes the state’s literary presence is lost in some of the other distractions, from politics to sports. But, really, those who tell the stories of the many different kinds of people and cultures in Texas have always been a powerful and critical force.”

Gerald Duff’s Fire Ants and Other Stories (NewSouth Books, 2007), was a finalist for the Texas Institute of Letters Jesse H. Jones Award for Best Book of Fiction. NewSouth also published his novel Coasters (2001), and his recent short ebook essay Fugitive Days (2012). At the induction ceremony, Mr. Duff read a selection from his recent novel Blue Sabine, which had been earlier in the month named by the Philosophical Society of Texas the best work of fiction published in 2012. Gerald Duff is a native of the Texas Gulf Coast.

Mr. Duff offered some thoughts on his induction, offering that “an old saying declares that a prophet is without honor in his own country. I can’t claim the status of prophet, but as a writer I’m much gratified to be recognized in my home state with my induction into the Texas Institute of Letters. Especially gratified given the many oddball characters and situations I’ve created and set in the Lone Star state. Thanks, Texas, for not taking these personally!”

Learn more about Rod Davis‘s and Gerald Duff‘s books at their NewSouth Books author pages.