Tag Archives: Ian Rankin

A double shot of Tartan noir at the 2013 Melbourne Writers Festival

Where the Dead Men Go coverLast Saturday I had the pleasure of interviewing two great Scottish crime writers, Doug Johnstone and Liam Mcilvanney, for a session on Tartan noir at the 2013 Melbourne Writers Festival.

We covered a lot of territory in our allotted hour, including what, if anything, ‘Tartan noir’ means, the history of Scottish crime writing, and the upcoming 2014 referendum on independence and its implications for the arts in Scotland.

ABC Big Ideas TV and Slow TV filmed the event. Apart from the fact I got to hear the immortal words, “sound check in ten mister Nette”, it means I’ll be able to put up a link to the show when it goes live instead repeating the contents of the session on this site.

That said I did want to do quick reviews of both their books, Mcilvanney’s Where the Dead Men Go, and Johnstone’s Gone Again.

First up, Where Dead Men Go.

This is the second in a series featuring the character of Gerry Conway, a cynical newspaper journalist pounding the mean streets of Glasgow. In the first book, All the Colours of the Town, Conway is looking for a major story and finds it when he stumbles across evidence that a major Scottish political leader has had past connections to Irish loyalist paramilitaries.… Read more

Hard labour at Melbourne’s Crime and Justice Festival

The Reader’s Feast Crime and Justice Festival returns to Melbourne this weekend.

The event will be headlined by Scottish crime writer Ian Rankin and there’ll be a number of other interesting crime writers speaking.

On Sunday at 4pm, I’ll be chairing a panel, ‘Hard labour: the art of crime writing’, with veteran writer Garry Disher, author of the Wyatt series amongst other books, Angela Savage and Leigh Redhead.

All four of us have stories in Crime Factory’s all Australian anthology, Hard Labour, which will be available for sale on the day.

It’s my time chairing a festival panel and I promise I’m going to try and make it interesting. I might even throw a few curve balls at the panel. Whatever the case, I guarantee I will not be asking what the lure of dark crime writing is. I think we know what that is already.

The session will take place at Reader’s Feast Bookstore at 162 Collins Street.

Information about tickets and full program details are here.

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The first and last time I’ll talk about starting my new novel

The series of guest posts by US crime writers I’ve hosted over the last month on this site were sub-titled ‘Noir Con or Bust’.

Looks like, in this instance, it was bust.

Super storm Sandy and my daughter’s broken collarbone put paid to my carefully worked out plans to visit New York and Philadelphia.

Yes, I’m pissed off about it. But not half as pissed off as all those in the US and the Caribbean who have had to deal with the storm’s consequences.

Anyway, with an extra two weeks up my sleeve, it’s time to do something I’ve been putting off for a while now – start novel number 2.

And this post is the first and last time I’m going to talk about it until it’s finished.

That means I’m not going to Tweet, Facebook or blog any further about my daily word count, any trouble I’m having with certain plot points, my writers’ block or lack of it, and what progress generally I’m making with the manuscript.

End of story.

Full stop.

I don’t mean any disrespect to those writers out there who do this a part of your writing regimen, but it’s not my thing.

What else will I say about the new novel?

It’s a heist story.… Read more