Q: John Rickards came up with the following question: What do you bring to the genre that few others have?Dagnabit. How come it’s always the guys that get things off their chest around here? Eh? Grumblerhubarbrhubarbetc …
A: “I think each writer brings his/her unique view of life and death and justice and all that’s right/wrong with the world, government, people, to their works. If not, all the stories would be alike. When I was in my early teens, I wanted to write, live in the tropics and sail. I am now out of my teens (a few times over) and I write, live in the tropics and sail. An ex-wife pointed out … that I was the only person she knows who continued working toward a dream throughout his life that didn’t make many changes. I still believe in things as I did years ago; now, that doesn’t mean there haven’t been adjustments in what I believe. But the big picture has remained the same. So, what does all this have to do with your question? I believe I bring strong beliefs to what I write. I am not a formula writer, who sits down and follows a flow chart. I spend a lot of time thinking about the story line, knowing it will take on a life of its own once I begin to pump my blood into it. I want to entertain, as well as bring opinions to my writing and they don’t have to be opinions that I believe in. Think of how much Archie Bunker did to show the world the ridiculousness of bigotry. A really well written bad guy can say a lot about his/her beliefs. I don’t know if that answers your question or not, but I got a lot off my chest …”
“Burke shows again that he’s not just a comic genius, but also a fine dramatic writer and storyteller.” – Booklist. “Prose both scabrous and poetic.” – Publishers Weekly. “Proust meets Chandler over a pint of Guinness.” – Spectator. “A sheer pleasure.” – Tana French. “Among the most memorable books of the year, of any genre.” – Sunday Times. “A hardboiled delight.” – Guardian. “Imagine Donald Westlake and Richard Stark collaborating on a screwball noir.” – Kirkus Reviews. “A cross between Raymond Chandler and Flann O’Brien.” – John Banville. “The effortless cool of Elmore Leonard at his peak.” – Ray Banks. “A fine writer at the top of his game.” – Lee Child.
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
What Would Archie Bunker Do In This Situation?
The Florida wing of the Irish crime fiction crew – aka Michael Haskins (right), author of CHASIN’ THE WIND – was interviewed last week on the eminent private eye blog Sons of Spade, where one of the questions (and its answer, natch) ranneth thusly: