Yep, it’s rubber-hose time, folks: a rapid-fire Q&A for those shifty-looking usual suspects ...
What crime novel would you most like to have written?
LA CONFIDENTIAL by James Ellroy (tight, tense and multi-layered) or THE BIG OVER EASY by Jasper Fforde (the intertextuality is very clever and the story has great imagination and humour).
What fictional character would you most like to have been?
There are loads of great characters out there, but I’m particularly partial to Bernie Gunther, Jack Irish, Harry Bosch and Frost (the novel character rather than the pale TV version) but I’m not sure I would like to be them! I think being Serge A. Storms from Tim Dorsey’s Florida crime capers would be interesting.
Who do you read for guilty pleasures?
I’m very partial to Tart Noir – which I’ve heard referred to, more than a little unfairly, as chick lit on steroids. Anything by Katy Munger, Lauren Henderson, Janet Evanovich, Jessica Speart, and co.
Most satisfying writing moment?
When a passage just unfolds in one graceful arc and needs practically no editing save typos.
The best Irish crime novel is …?
DIVORCING JACK by Colin Bateman. I don’t know how many people I’ve lent that book to, but whoever the last person was, can I have it back?
What Irish crime novel would make a great movie?
I can imagine EVERY DEAD THING by John Connolly on the silver screen. I’m a little indifferent to the book, but I’m sure someone must be considering putting Benjamin Black’s (John Banville’s) CHRISTINE FALLS to celluloid – historical piece, social mobility, family rivalry, Catholic Church, scandal, etc. I think Gene Kerrigan’s THE MIDNIGHT CHOIR would translate well to a TV drama.
Worst / best thing about being a writer?
The worst is rejection letters! I have two best things – you get to find out the ending before anyone else, and when someone tells you they enjoyed reading something you’ve written.
The pitch for your next book is …?
Title: ‘The White Gallows.’ Tag line: ‘The past never dies …’ The pitch: ‘In post-Celtic Tiger Ireland the murder rate is soaring and the gardai are struggling to cope with gangland wars, domestic disputes, and drunken brawls that spiral into fatal violence. To add to Detective Superintendent’s Colm McEvoy’s workload are the suspicious deaths of two immigrants – an anonymous, Lithuanian youth and an elderly, German billionaire. While one remains an enigma, the murky history of the other is slowly revealed. But where there is money there is power and, as McEvoy soon learns, if you swim amongst sharks, you’d better act like a shark …’
Who are you reading right now?
I have a habit of reading more than one thing at a time. At the moment I’m just finishing James Lee Burke’s CADIALLAC JUKEBOX. I’m also halfway through Uki Goni’s THE REAL ODESSA about the wartime links between Argentina and Nazi Germany and the subsequent flight of Nazi war criminals south across the Atlantic.
God appears and says you can only write OR read. Which would it be?
Can one edit instead?
The three best words to describe your own writing are …?
Up for discussion …
Rob Kitchin’s debut novel THE RULE BOOK is published on May 26th.
“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. “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.