Recovering journalist, novelist, photographer, urban explorer and pretty good cook. I'm a second-generation Los Angeleno and lived there off and on for many years as a child and an adult. I lived in the Pacific Northwest for eight years, Asia (Hong Kong and Jakarta) for nearly 12, and moved to the Mississippi Delta in 2013. I also spend a lot of time in Bogota, Colombia.
As a journalist (writing and photography) I covered a wide range of topics, including business, economics, finance, politics, arts, culture, sports, travel, drugs, sex and rock & roll. I once even wrote an advice to the lovelorn column for a bi-lingual English and Chinese fashion magazine.
I've had five books traditionally published so far—a biography of a killer baseball player, and a series of four detective thrillers based on stories that I covered as a journalist in Asia. There have also been a number of short story publications. I currently have a fictional, three-part, coming-of-age novel / memoir set in Los Angeles prowling for a publisher. My new photography and writing book about street art in Bogota, Colombia will be published in late 2022 or in 2023. (More information about that can be found on bogotawalls.com.)
Reading Moby Dick, a lot of sitting on my ass in front of a keyboard and some brutal editors made me a writer.
Looking at the world and trying to make some kind of visual sense of it made me into a photographer. (A passion for hallucinogens as a teenager helped with color and composition.)
Hearing Howlin' Wolf do Smokestack Lightning LOUD when I was 14, years-later led me to lose my mind and move to Clarksdale, Mississippi. My musical tastes are, however, eclectic. While writing this bio my iGizmo has played Ethiopian jazz, Mississippi Fred McDowell, Bob Dylan, Moondog, Carlos Vives, John Coltrane, Cui Jian, Fantastic Negrito, Johnny Cash, James Booker and an Indonesian all-woman punk band called Geger.
I love getting in a car and driving to places I've never been before, or the same on foot if I'm in a city. I love to eat so I learned to cook. My mom gave me the best cooking advice I ever got: "The most important ingredient is the wine that goes into the chef."
Here's some quotes by people other than my mom which I find inspirational:
"If you don't think too good, don't think too much." —Ted Williams
"Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities; truth isn't." —Mark Twain
"There are certain queer times and occasions in this strange mixed affair we call life when a man takes this whole universe for a vast practical joke, though the wit thereof he but dimly discerns, and more than suspects that the joke is at nobody's expense but his own." —Herman Melville
From pitching at Yankee Stadium to a perfect game against major leaguers behind bars, the story of Blackie Schwamb, possibly the greatest prison baseball player of all time, is a tale from the dark-side of the Greatest Generation...
"Eric Stone's riveting account of Blackie Schwamb's great baseball talent and equally great character defects is so much more than a sports story. It is a fascinating trip along a life on the edge, in and out of trouble, golden opportunities and missed chances. Damon Runyon would have been proud to tell the tale of Blackie."
—Tom Brokaw, longtime NBC anchorman and best-selling author
Introducing Ray Sharp, American expatriate journalist, detective, confused human being just trying to do at least a little something right in the world. Helping out the brother of a colleague, Ray gets tangled up in the sleazy and deadly world of the Russian white slave trade. Based on a true story, the action moves from Hong Kong to Macau to an island brothel run by the Chinese Navy in the South China Sea and finally to its conclusion in Vladivostok in Russia's wild far east.
"The Living Room of the Dead is a well-written, suspenseful, enthralling, and very uncomfortable book to read. Not a cheerful book, but a compelling book. Gritty and violent, difficult to put down even in the ugly parts, The Living Room of the Dead is a fine first novel inspired by a true story."
A routine investigation into a Chinese art supplies company unearths a smuggling ring. The trail leads through a warehouse filled with looted antiquities in the boomtown of Shenzhen, just north of Hong Kong; to the lair of a vicious ex-South Vietnamese general now living in Thailand; and finally to the murderous Khmer Rouge in the ancient temples and more recent killing fields of Cambodia. Based on the sordid facts of the illegal trade in stolen Cambodian art. Book two in the series.
"A complacent reader will not get the full effect of books such as Grave Imports. It is a mystery/thriller but it is also a commentary on the modern world, its foibles and its fancies. The world seen through Ray Sharp's eyes is not a pretty world, it is not nice, but it has heart and hope. The story starts with a statue of heads, it ends in a temple of a head--a fitting symbol of this thriller for the thinking man."
—Front Street Reviews
Gold, a lot of it, has been discovered in the oil rich tropics of Sumatra. Or has it? From an American suburb incongruously set into a jungle clearing, to the sleazy bars of Jakarta; from a neighborhood floating on a river, to the dense, steaming rainforest; corporate investigator Ray Sharp's job is to ferret out the truth. Loosely based on the facts of the Bre-X gold fraud of 1997.
"Rich in atmosphere, intrigue and eroticism, Flight of the Hornbill recalls the best of Graham Greene in its ability to transport us to cloying, sinister climes we can smell and taste... Stone knows of what he writes and his authority comes through on every page, giving this thriller not just a propulsive pace, but suffusing it with the weight of authenticity; of hard-earned and world-weary experience of the sorry depths of human wickedness in pursuit of wealth."
—Craig McDonald, author of Edgar, Anthony and Gumshoe nominated Head Games
Hong Kong's been handed back to the Chinese. Ray Sharp's whole world is changing. Carnivorous Tibetan monks are worried about what a Chinese bank is doing with their money. Is it really ok to do something because everybody else is? People smuggling, financial shenanigans, a sociopathic veteran of the U.S. invasion of Grenada, a painful dumpling accident, drugs, sex and rock and roll, along with the usual coterie of business moguls, hookers, friends and foes.
"Whatever Stone is smoking, I want some. This is bizarre but believable, tough but tender, and fast but considered. Highly recommended."
—Lee Child, best-selling, award winning author of Gone Tomorrow and a whole lot more
Edited by Christopher G. Moore
"The Lunch That Got Away"
In this first ever noir anthology of Bangkok, twelve seasoned and internationally known—Thai and Western—writers have come together to make a powerful collection of crime fiction short stories that portray the dark side of this Asian metropolis where the lives of most citizens seem as far away from heaven as its Thai name Krungthep is distant from its meaning—City of Angels.
Edited by Darrell James, Linda O. Johnston & Tammy Kaehler
From the Low Riders that nightly cruise the Sunset Strip, to the infamous Dead Man's Curve immortalized in song, Southern Californians' fascination with their cars has long been the fodder of legend and has defined a culture known for its fast-paced and sometimes reckless lifestyle. Now, sixteen tantalizing stories from L.A. authors take us on a joyride through the darker streets of Los Angeles. At the signpost, just ahead, your... LAST EXIT TO MURDER.
Edited by Gary Phillips
"Arbitraging the Blood Brain Barrier"
In Scoundrels, an all-original anthology featuring bestselling and Edgar® and Shamus award-winning writers, you'll read stories of desperate grifters, brokers hedging big bets for the big take, schemers working the long con for the sure money, used car salesman with golden dreams and rusted hopes, crooked lawyers and bent clients, one percenters hustling for that last half-percent, kind-hearted killers and the lonely hearted who tell themselves any lie as the double down for the long count.
"One Turbo Charged Night in Delhi"
An eBook Short Story
A taxi driver, an ox-drawn cart, a Ferrari, widows and orphans, strippers, Gandhi and really bad beer.
A true short story.
I'm available for assignments and exhibitions.
Portfolio photos are available for license for commercial and editorial purposes. Prints from portfolios for exhibition and collection are available for purchase.
For more information email me: firstname.lastname@example.org.