Category Archives: Tartan Noir

Dishing up Pulp Curry in a new way: why I am starting a Substack newsletter

After much thought I have decided that to experiment with moving the focus of my blogging from this site to a new Pulp Curry Substack newsletter.

Why am I doing this?

The first post on this website appeared on July 2010 (about the incredibly underrated 1979 Australian heist film, Money Moversyou can read the post here). I’ve been writing on the site with varying frequency ever since (579 posts in all), and for the most part have enjoyed it immensely.

But for the last 12 or so months I just haven’t been feeling it – or getting the hits to make it seem worthwhile – and have started to wonder whether it’s worth continuing with the effort. Posting on a website has been starting to feel like the equivalent of trying to read a broadsheet newspaper in a crowded tram carriage, unwieldy and inconvenient.

And, thinking about it, I suspect the blog format is starting to get a bit stale for me and is actually now a brake on my posting more regularly.

I know that I’m no Robinson Crusoe in this regard. The majority of the blogs I used to follow have gradually fallen by the wayside, as people have moved on, grown weary of the effort, found other interests, adopted other means to get their message out, or, in some cases (gulp), died.… Read more

Register for on-line NoirCon 2022

Those of you who have been following my site for a while now may have seen me post about NoirCon previously. A celebration of all things noir in film, literature, art and anything else you care to mention, NoirCon was previously held as a face-to-face gathering in Philadelphia, but has been cancelled for the last few years, due to Covid and other problems.

Well, now it is back, this year as an online gathering.

NoirCon will take place Friday-Saturday, October 21-23, EST. Virtual NoirCon 2022 will be held on the Accelevents platform. An all-access pass covering the entire conference is $36. Registration includes access to the Accelevents platform for 30 days after the event, so attendees can re-watch events or catch up on panels they missed.

NoirCon is hands down the best literary/arts festival I have attended. The exact program is not live yet but whatever the fevered mind of NoirCon organiser Lou Boxer has dreamt up in terms of a program, I have no doubt it’ll be good, including new events and events that would have been held in previous cancelled versions of the program. So if you have any interest in noir at all and are able to make the time zone work for you, you should definitely register at this link.… Read more

My year in books: David Whish-Wilson

ZeroThe next guest in the ‘my year in books’ series is Perth-based crime writer David Whish-Wilson.

David’s Zero At the Bone (the sequel to his 2010 book, Line of Sight) was one of my favourite crime reads of 2013. I reviewed the book on this site a couple of months ago.

Also hot off the presses and getting rave reviews is David’s book about his home town, Perthpart of the New South Books city series. You can find the book here.

Dave’s got some interesting choices. The first of the Laidlaw series is on my radar to try soon.

Welcome David.

My top 5 books of this Year, in no particular order are:

The Dying Beach, Angela Savage

I’ve spent most of the year working on a non-fiction book, and my reading has been pretty much limited to municipal histories and the like. One thing I notice about this year’s favourite novels, unlike in previous years, is that 4 of the 5 are Australian, and three of the four are West Australian, which I think is terrific. One of the greatest joys this year was reading Angela Savage’s latest crime novel, The Dying Beach. From the first pages I was there with Jayne Keeney and her idiosyncratic but always fully-realised side-kick, Rajiv.… Read more

Tartan Noir panel on ABC TV Big Ideas

A quick heads up that the session on Tartan Noir I chaired at the 2013 Melbourne Writers Festival is now available for viewing at ABC TV Big Ideas.

The session features two great Scottish crime writers, Doug Johnstone and Liam Mcilvanney.

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.

The program will be shown at the following times (in Australia):

Today (Tuesday 17th September) on ABC1 at 11am.

Saturday 21st September on ABCNEWS24 at 12 midnight.

A shortened version on Saturday 21st September on ABCNEWS24 at 2.30pm. This will be repeated on Monday 23rd September at 5.30am on ABCNEWS24.

The program will also be available on iview (ABC Online) after the program has aired here (although unfortunately this link is geo-blocked and can only be seen in Australia).

Or you can just catch the full web version here.

If you want more information, here is my review of Doug’s latest book, Gone Again, and Liam’s latest work, Where the Dead Men Go.Read more

In conversation with Scottish crime writer Stuart MacBride


Hot on the heels of last weekend’s Tartan noir panel at the Melbourne Writers Festival, comes news another Scottish crime writer will be visiting our city.

Best selling author Stuart MacBride will be in Melbourne next week.

MacBride is the author of several books featuring DS Logan McRae, as well as a number of stand-alone novels. His latest McRae novel, Close to the Bone has been released.

I’ll be in conversation with MacBride at Reader’s Feast Bookstore next Tuesday, September 3 at 6.30pm. Readers Feast is located at 162 Collins Street, Melbourne.

It’ll be MacBride’s only Melbourne appearance. Tickets are $6 and bookings are essential. E-mail

Hope to see you there.… Read more