Owen Hill was born and raised in an industrial suburb of Los Angeles. He knocked around a fair bit– baggage service at LAX, union rep, warehouse drone, janitor, “paid” political volunteer, ice cream maker—and other forms of boredom (as a poet said) advertised as poetry.
Landed in the Bay Area where he worked in several bookstores, finally settling into Moe’s in Berkeley as a buyer and events coordinator.
Had written poetry since puberty but had been shy about calling himself a poet. After taking a workshop with Tom Clark at UC extension he came to believe that poetry was his calling. He has since published seven slim volumes of poetry and read his poems at various venues around the country.
His first novel, The Chandler Apartments, was written in Berkeley, in the building so named. At the time he was convalescing from a life-threatening disease in the confines of The Chandler. The novel began as a satire, poking fun at the characters that inhabit the Bay Area poetry scene. It morphed into a murder mystery and became the first of the series featuring poet detective Clay Blackburn.
Currently in good health, he is working on the fourth Clay Blackburn mystery. The second, The Incredible Double, is just out from PM Press.
The Incredible Double
Author: Owen Hill
Publisher: PM Press
Format: Paperback, ePub, PDF, mobi
Page count: 144
Size: 5 x 8
Subjects: Fiction, Thriller, Mystery
“Very well written, well paced, well time-lined and well-charactered. I chuckled seeing so many of my poetic acquaintances mentioned in the text.” —Ed Sanders
“Owen Hill’s breathless, sly and insouciant mystery novels are full of that rare Dawn Powel-ish essence: fictional gossip. I could imagine popping in and out of his sexy little Chandler building apartment a thousand times and never having the same cocktail buzz twice. Poets have all the fun, apparently.” —Jonathan Lethem author of The Fortress of Solitude
“Guillaume Appollinaire and Edward Sanders would feast on this thriller of the real Berkeley and its transsexual CIA agents and doppelgangers staging Glock shoot-outs. A mystery of contingencies centering in the reeking Chandler Arms and the quicksand of Moe’s Books.” —Michael McClure
“Is this Berkeley noir? I’d call it lustily readable. And such reading set me to thinking about tone and that to get it right is a a saintly gift (which Owen Hill has) of hearing and lavishly staying on one wiggly and implausible note throughout passages of poetic lore, pretty hot sex, action (of all things!) and multi-musings on “the life” of book writing, book selling and humbly accepting oneself as condemned to love the many leaves we turn with aimless passion before we ourselves rattle and blow away down these raunchy beloved streets.” —Eileen Myles, author of The Importance of Being Iceland
- The Southside Sleuth
- Hill, Brenner Read at Moe’s
- Owen Hill on the Professor of Pop
- The Incredible Double in the L.A. Times
- Pike: A Review
- Judy Joy Jones Show with Owen Hill, Mystery Author & Book Buyer—Fresh from BookExpo NYC!
- An Interview with Owen Hill on Mary Magazine