Gritty Books

What you’ll find in the pages of GRITTY PRESS books are heavy doses of action, self-reliance, steel nerves, sheer terror, resolve in the face of unbeatable odds, stories that quicken the pulse and stir a grim smile, the sort of smile that happens just before something happens….


A Gritty Press Short Story of Piracy, Deceit & Madness
eBook Edition: Kindle | NOOK | KOBO
(Gritty Press, August 2014)

Yo-ho-ho, buccaneers! It’s a Gritty Press Short Story of Piratical Proportions!

Pirates aren’t the only thing to seize control of the ill-fated vessel….

Scurvy-ridden marauders have wrested control of the Tess, locked the captain, crew, and young runaway, Corbin, in the hold to wither and die. The captain’s wife? They keep her above decks. What the ill-bred raiders don’t know is that an unseen evil will soon turn the Tess into a floating hell….

Fur, Fang & Shadow


A Gritty Press Triple-Shot of Freakish Beasts and the Havoc They Wreak
eBook Edition: Kindle | NOOK | KOBO
(Gritty Press, approx. 20 pages, July 2014)

A Trio of Creepy Creature Short Stories:

Uncle Joe is having a rough week, rough year, rough life. Then he encounters a rare viper under his porch and Joe’s countdown begins.

What does the little imp in the tree want? Is he causing the narrator’s life to fall apart? Is he even there?

Orrie the carny won the caged man-beast in a card game. But now he can’t afford to keep him. What to do? Orrie has a solution. So does the beast.

Holy dripping fang, flying furball, and shadowy imp! It’s a Trio of Gritty Press Creepy Creature Short Stories, by award-winning author Matthew P. Mayo, that will claw their way into your brain and nest deep. Might as well break out the cheese and crackers and pop a cold one, ’cause these beasties are here to stay….


A Barbaric Tale of Flench and the Freebooter
A Gritty Press Short Story of Savage Proportions!
eBook Edition: Kindle | NOOK | KOBO
(Gritty Press, approx. 19 pages, July 2014)

In the tradition of Robert E. Howard … it’s Flench and the Freebooter’s first outing.

A stranger—freebooter, lawless adventurer, barbarian—rides into the little market town of Carana early one day, parting the fog on his massive, blood-eyed battle horse. Flench, the crippled stable hand, recognizes something about the man, something he’s not entirely certain he likes. He soon comes to learn the stranger is not there by chance. Will he pillage and plunder the little market town? Or does he have something else in mind?

Holy chain mail, broadsword, and brimmin’ flagon! It’s another barbaric Gritty Press Short Story, by award-winning author Matthew P. Mayo, that rides in on big, stomping hooves and takes the law into its own hands! Hoist a tankard … or get outta the way!

Been a Long TimeBEEN A LONG TIME

A Gritty Press Short Story of Neverending Torment
eBook Edition: Kindle | NOOK | KOBO
(Gritty Press, approx. 16 pages, July 2014)

Bad vacations never end, they just get worse….

He was looking for a vacation, a getaway to fulfill childhood fantasies. He was finally going to be a cowboy. An honest-to-god, fast-ridin’, quick-shootin’, hard-drinkin’ cowboy. And a highly recommended time-travel company was going to make it happen. He should have been worried when the pretty attendant strapping him in said the machine’s problems were finally fixed. All the bugs had been worked out…. He should have said something. But now it’s much too late. He is trapped in a run-down, fly-blown, forsaken Western town he can’t leave. Each day repeating, each day worse than the last. Trapped. With no hope of escape. Ever.

Oh, the horror of it all! It’s another tooth-grinding, eye-rolling, freaky Gritty Press Short Story, by award-winning author Matthew P. Mayo, that will help convince readers to never, ever, under any circumstances, take a vacation. Ever!

The Witch Hole CoverTHE WITCH HOLE

A Gritty Press Short Story of Ancient Terror

eBook Edition: Kindle | NOOK | KOBO
(Gritty Press, approx. 18 pages, July 2014)

Who Dares Enter the Lair of No Return?

He is warned — never enter the cave, for it is said that evil dwells there. But he is young and lured by lust. He stumbles forward into the gloom … and finds himself trapped for eternity, the latest guest in a hellish trophy room as old as time itself. And his host? A shamanistic creature with a taste for….

Weird! Chilling! Astounding! THE WITCH HOLE will leave readers jumpy, disturbed, and desperate for a way out!

Two for the TrailTWO FOR THE TRAIL

A Pair of Gritty Western Short Stories
eBook Edition: Kindle, NOOK
(Gritty Press, approx. 34 pages, February 2013)

This tough twosome — available right now for the Kindle and NOOK — includes the following stories:

Half a Pig
(2010 Spur Award Finalist, Best Western Short Fiction Story, Western Writers of America)
Blood is thick. Rope is thicker…. Rancher Eamon Riggs is a hard man disinclined to tolerate theft—no matter the thief, no matter the reason.

Snows of Montana
On his way north, Texas cowboy “Pal” Palchik stops at a small farm for a hot meal. Then he meets the farmer’s daughter…. Pal should have kept on riding.

PLUS: This ebook includes an excerpt from Roamer, Book 1: Wrong Town!


One last mission for Mason the Mankiller

New revised editions: Kindle, NOOK, Kobo, softcover
(Gritty Press, 222 pages, October 2012)

His Honor Newland Pontiff III, late of Exeter Territorial Prison, now presides over a vast tract of land with the ambitious town of Cayuse Falls at its center‚ town he’s confident he can transform into the ‘Washington of the West,’ given enough time. But a demon from his past haunts the horizon, and time is running short.

Mason the Mankiller, vigilante hero to the downtrodden, has come out of retirement to settle one last score‚ the only one that ever mattered‚ with a man who long ago forgot he’d wronged the famous ‘killer of killers.’ A tonic peddler, vengeful sisters, and a reluctant lawman all dog Mason’s trail. But he vows that nothing will stop him from seeing this last mission through to its end‚ an end he’s sure he won’t survive.

Winters' WarWINTERS’ WAR

Being an Account from the Lost Papers of
The Winters Family Ranch

New revised editions: Available as an ebook and softcover
(Gritty Press, 218 pages, July 2012)

USA: Kindle, Nook, Kobo, Paperback || UK: Kindle, Paperback
France: Kindle, Paperback || Germany: Kindle, Paperback
Italy: Kindle, Paperback || Spain: Kindle, Paperback
(220 pages, Gritty Press, July 2012)

For eight years the Winters family has worked hard to live down the nightmare of a bloody range war. Theirs is now a promising ranch on hard-won land in Wyoming’s rugged Rockies. But on the eve of the season’s first snowstorm a stranger slips in, ripping open old wounds, and devolving their lives into a brutal struggle for survival.

Niall Winters returns from selling his fall herd to find his ranch a burned ruin, his Uncle Drift dead, his wife missing, and the blizzard covering any clues with a whole lot of snow. He heads into the raging maw of the storm determined to confront this demon from his past and salvage the remains of their shattered lives–or die trying. But he has no idea of the horrors that await him.

Wrong Town - Roamer Book 1WRONG TOWN (Roamer Book 1)

One man’s quest to lose himself in the West

New revised editions: Available as an ebook and softcover
(Gritty Press, 184 pages, March 2012)
USA: Kindle, Nook, Kobo, Paperback || UK: Kindle, Paperback
France: Kindle, Paperback || Germany: Kindle, Paperback
Italy: Kindle, Paperback ||Spain: Kindle, Paperback

First in the gritty, all-action Western series by Spur Award-nominated author Matthew P. Mayo, featuring Roamer, the loner with a face everyone fears.

Roamer is having a bad day—he is savaged by a grizzly, robbed by bandits, and attacked by wolves. So by the time he makes it to the little Rocky Mountain town of Tall Pine all he wants is a cup of coffee, a hot meal, and a soft bed. The sheriff jails him for murder instead. A seething mob marks Roamer’s homely face as guilty and seeks twisted justice with his blood. Can he stop the townsfolk from destroying themselves or will they kill him first? It’s a brutal race against time for Roamer as the mob rips apart its little town, leaving innocent people dead and the wrong people in charge. Welcome to Wrong Town.



Gritty PressOkay, so what’s this Gritty stuff, anyway?

gritty | gritē |

adjective (grittier, grittiest)
 1 Containing or covered with grit.
 2 Tough and uncompromising. Showing courage and resolve:

The gritty pioneer fought the grizzly barehanded. And won.

Life is short, so grip your Bowie knife in one fist and set your stance. You never know when a big ol’ silvertip bull grizz might be coming in fast, chuffing, bellowing, snapping his teeth, popping his jaw, raking up great clods of dirt, and barreling straight for that stranded wagonload of pioneer young’uns just behind you….

Keep It Gritty.™


Gritty Mission

The abiding mission here at Gritty HQ is simple: Pepper each day with a pinch of gritty. Team Gritty strives to do that by being proactive and living with intention, aka Keeping It Gritty, one day at a time. And we help others find their own Inner Gritty with our exclusive and growing line of Gritty Goods and Gritty Gear, including Books, Calendars, T-shirts, Hats, Mugs, Brass Knuckles, Moccasins, Bi-planes, Real Live Angry Weasels, and more, much more….


Gritty Press publishes new and previously released work, including short stories, novels, and non-fiction tales of adventure brimming with fear, humor, fortitude, courage, strength—all topped with heaping helpings of white-knuckle action.

Team Gritty

Team Gritty's camp near Rock Creek, Custer National Forest, Montana

Team Gritty’s camp near Rock Creek, Custer National Forest, Montana. (Who knew Snowy’s a treehugger?)

The Mayos run Gritty Press and rove North America in their Tiger Bengal TX 4×4 Adventure Vehicle in search of hot coffee, tasty whiskey, and high adventure. Stop by their blog, Trail Dust, often to keep up with their latest missives from the road, but watch where you step—the tarantulas are loose again.

And remember—Keep It Gritty.