“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, November 12, 2008

O’Bloggers, Where Art Thou?

Took a quick shufty around ye olde bloggeosphere yesterday, and realised how many top-notch Irish blogs there are dealing with crime fiction. Tony Bailie (right) has a nice piece called ‘Thick as Thieves’ up on his interweb yokeybus, and I’m not saying that just because he name-checks yours truly. Okay, that’s a goodly part of the reason, but it’s still a pretty nifty piece nonetheless …
  Elsewhere, Neville Thompson has kicked off a recession-busting innovation. Quoth Nev: “In order to help with the current credit crunch, I have decided to write my latest novel as a blog novel, a chapter every Thursday.” Which is nice of him. Why not toddle along and leave him a comment?
  As always, Gerard Brennan over at CSNI leaves us all choking in his fragrant dust – this week alone he has posts on Ian Sansom, Sam Millar, John McFetridge and Brian McGilloway. All this when he’s supposed to be scribbling away on his own opus. Actually, it feels rather strange to try to remember a time when the world didn’t have CSNI … It’s a bit like mince pies, really. We could probably do without them, but wouldn’t you hate to have to try?
  Mmmmm, mince pies.
  Uber-babe and crime scribe Arlene Hunt has started blogging more often recently, very probably because she’s just released her latest novel, UNDERTOW, but she still doesn’t blog as often as she should, because she’s very funny when she does. Golly-gosh, isn’t it a terrible pity that she doesn’t know someone who could, y’know, help her out with that whole blogging malarkey?
  Finally, there’s always John Connolly’s blog. As he says in the intro to his latest piece, he’s been blogging less frequently too, mainly because he doesn’t want to repeat himself and waste our time. Bless. Anyhoo, there’s some smashing stuff in there this outing, in which John beards the literary types in their Canadian den. My theory on literary snobbery is, given that literary novels don’t really sell, the snobbery is all they’ve got. Literary writers are like the guys ‘n’ gals still living in two rooms of a crumbling old 40-room pile in the Home Counties, clinging on to that vestige of aristocracy in the hope that that will convince people they still matter. Quoth JC:
“A fellow Irish author enquires how I go about constructing a mystery narrative, given that it requires the farming out of information at certain intervals. I reply that I don’t plan it at all, and instead the revelations in question occur in part both naturally in the course of the initial draft and are also subject to revision during the process of rewriting as the heart of the narrative gradually reveals itself. I make the point that it is no different from the way in which a literary author approaches a book, and note the fact that his own most recent novel depends upon a series of revelations about an act of startling violence that has occurred many years in the past, so the difference between our texts is hardly as significant as he might believe. He doesn’t even answer, but simply turns around and walks away, as if appalled that I might suggest any degree of commonality between us.”
  An unnamed ‘fellow Irish author’, eh? My money’s on Michael Collins.

  UPDATE: Hurrah, a little birdie tells me it wasn’t Michael Collins! That’s a relief.

4 comments:

bookwitch said...

I think Gerard should shuffle his letters to read NCIS, instead.

Do you reckon Lily is old enough to help Arlene? If I'm not mistaken it is she who says "golly gosh" quite often.

I thought your heading for this post was sort of asking where all other bloggers have gone. Why do I feel so lonely here in the comments box?

I shall go away and try to shut up now.

Anonymous said...

Har, if I need any help, I'll be SHURE to find someone.
Arlene

Declan Burke said...

Ms Witch, I'm pretty sure that you're the only one who actually leaves comments here, under a variety of psuedonyms. I particularly like your 'John McFetridge' persona ... The beard, especially.

Arlene? Don't be stuck for the names of fellow bloggers. I know at least twenty who'd be delighted to help out ...

Cheers, Dec

Logan Lamech said...

There's a shortage on bloggers? Who knew?

Logan Lamech
www.eloquentbooks.com/LingeringPoets.html