NoirCon 2014 – Part 4

Let me wrap things up: I’ve let them drag on too long, probably because I have been busier than a one-armed paper hanger since I got back. Or something like that. Fun ends and work returns and there is so much to do: I was grading papers on the train and sketching out a story…

Noir Con 2014 – Part 3

The longest day of the con kicked off early with a talk from Eric Miles Williamson about his unconventional path to writing and academia. From a tough Oakland childhood to the ivory tower or at least the Texas equivalent, along the way he’s been a jazz musician as well as a novelist, and now sits…

NoirCon 2014 – Part 2

After a drink with Patti and her husband Phil in the Belgian beer place on South Street, we headed back to catch the Ross MacDonald panel with Tom Nolan and Jeff Wong and a whole host of images including personal photos and memorabilia. Really fascinating and sometime sad, as there were a lot of problems…

NoirCon 2014 – Part 1

I headed off to NoirCon. It was a misty morning so the fog floated over the Hudson as the train rumbled south. Before you knew it we were passing under the George Washington and pulling into Penn Station. After a relatively quick and painless change, I was on my way to Philly. I’d already missed…

Crime Fiction in Gdansk: Day Three (and Four)

It’s the little things that make a difference. I liked the attempt to give the authentic feel of a crime scene to the conference area. Good thing I resisted the urge to call these posts “Gdansking Lessons” which I was temped to do, following in Vonnegut’s footsteps (“Peculiar travel suggestions are dancing lessons from God.”)….

Crime Fiction in Gdansk: Day Two

Day Two kicked off a bit later for which I blame the two Pauls, of course. I missed the keynote! And it was on college mystery novels, so I hope to read it in the proceedings in the future. Ditto for Fiona Peters’ presentation on Barbara Vine; and I need to get to work on…

Crime Fiction in Gdansk: Day One

The short version: fantastic apart from Lot Airlines. Never fly Lot. Delays going from and coming to NY, mechanical problems, plus they didn’t admit to the delays until everyone was milling around waiting to board. The crew both in the airport at Warsaw and on the plane were unfriendly and often downright surly, so it…

Crime Fiction in Gdańsk

Here’s where I’ll be the rest of the week. I will endeavour to share pictures and stories as I can, WiFi allowing. I am looking forward to hanging with Mr B and a bunch of new folks, too, and talking about Dorothy Hughes. As I type this up I got the word that Graham Joyce…

LonCon and ShamroKon Schedules

LONCON 3 The 72nd World Science Fiction Convention 14-18 August 2014 LONCON Tove Jansson’s Moomins: Their Legacy and Influence Thursday 12:00 – 13:30, Capital Suite 13 (ExCeL) It’s 100 years since the birth of Finnish author/artist Tove Jansson, the award-winning creator of the beloved Moomins. Moomins appeared in novels, illustrated books, comic book strips and…

Harrogate 2014

Harrogate — or to give its proper name, Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival — is always full of shenanigans. Put a bunch of writers together at a vintage pub in a spa town in Yorkshire when it’s far too hot and well, what would you expect? While usually I’d call the cheeriest writers either…