Author - John Nuckel

Breaking noses

By the time he was nineteen Owney Madden was running the Gopher Gang. He got to that level because he knew how to handle any mug that crossed him. One of his trademark moves was the way he would bust a guy’s nose. Left him marked for life. All of New York knew that if you crossed Owney Madden, you’re gonna remember it every time you look in the mirror. He taught each new member the way he wanted [...]

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Would you like a bag for that?

I’ve been asked that question three times this weekend. First time was when I was checking out at the grocery store. The bagger held up a plastic bottle of ketchup and asked if I would like a bag for it. I looked at her with disbelief but refrained from responding that I would like to carry the ketchup in my hand as I walked out to my car. I said yes. The second time was later that afternoon as I [...]

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I don’t know if I like that guy

I’ve heard that a lot about the main character in my first three books. In fact, most opinions are more definitive than that. He has been called; moral center, toady, hero, shyster, genius, drunk, liar and savior. It mainly depends on who did the reading and thus did the defining. So what do I do with this guy? I can’t make him go away. He does make people form opinions, and if they hate him or love him; they care [...]

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Garbage Pickin’

I put out the recyclables last night and this morning I saw a man on my Manhattan street who collects cans. His cart was an engineering marvel. Blue bags hanging at odd angles from his shopping cart. Each bag looked like a half deflated Thanksgiving float. It was early, but his cart was already overstuffed to its limit. I didn’t look down on the guy, I identified with him. As a child I was him. I was taught my life’s credo while [...]

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Harder than it seemed

"That was harder than it seemed." How many times have you heard that? A lot I would think. You know what I never hear? "That was easier than it seemed." There's a reason of course. There are very few tasks that one could describe with such a bold statement. If it was so easy, you wouldn't bother saying anything about it. But there is one activity that has inspired me to shout that phrase aloud after accomplishing it. Skiing! Now stay [...]

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Trip Fiction Article

Talking Location With… author John Nuckel: Martha’s Vineyard 22nd February 2018 #TalkingLocationWith… author John Nuckel: Martha’s Vineyard where his novel “Drive” is set in part. I was jogging on Edgartown Bay Road in Martha’s Vineyard a few years ago. At the two-mile mark on my phone app I came across a sign that read “Huckleberry Barrens.” I will admit to not knowing what the hell a Huckleberry is but it was hot, I was tired and it looked like there might be some [...]

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Take the Stairs

Frank sat on a bench looking out at the Hudson River. He was in rehab, again. The facility was just north of Beacon in the Hudson Valley. His first time was around twenty years ago. He had fallen into the life of booze and coke with the late eighties Wall Street crowd. Down to the seaport for a gallon of beer than a few lines for the drive to the Hampton’s. Soon enough he started to miss the ride to the [...]

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DRIVE – The Volunteers Trilogy (Preview)

DRIVE - The Volunteers Trilogy Episode One by JOHN NUCKEL “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how a strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who [...]

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New York Times feature

New York Times feature - Becoming the Sports Parent I Wished I’d Had By JOHN NUCKEL NOV. 25, 2016 My mother screamed at me from the bleachers only once. It was 39 years ago, but I still cringe from the memory of it. “John Nuckel, get over here right now!” she yelled. I looked up at the clock. Only 35 seconds until halftime. I can hold out, I told myself, as I developed a plan: Ignore my mother until the end of the first half, [...]

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