Wednesday, August 28, 2013

The Author Has a Choice, Not a Decision

As you may have heard, I am participating in the “Goodnight, My Angel: Hard-Boiled, Noir, and the Reader's Love Affair With Both" panel, with moderator Peter Rozovsky and panelists Eric Beetner, Mike Dennis, Terrence McCauley, and Jonathan Woods, at Bouchercon 2013 on Friday, Sept. 20, at 10:20 a.m. That should take care of itself. No one runs a better panel than Peter, and the rest of the panelists are interesting and entertaining enough to make my primary job not to step on anyone’s lines. Come out and see for yourself.

I’m also hosting an Author’s Choice event, Saturday at 4:00. The title of that session is:

That’s right. Ain’t got one yet.

What I’m leaning toward right now is a discussion of the relevance today of Raymond Chandler’s idea of a hero, as put forth in his classic essay, “The Simple Art of Murder.” It’s a topic near and dear to me, and it gives me an excuse to read the final few paragraphs from the essay, which rival the timeless “What did it matter where you lay once you were dead?” paragraph from The Big Sleep. (“The realist in murder writes of a world…Down these mean streets…”) It would be fun to lay out some thoughts along those lines, maybe debate them with readers and any other authors who might show up.

Fun for me, sure. It occurs to me I might want not to be so goddamn selfish for a change and see what someone else wants to hear about, maybe even discuss.


I am soliciting suggestions for my Author’s Choice session. If you like the idea above, say so. If you don’t, say so. If you have a better idea—and if you don’t like mine I sure hope you do—make a suggestion. Argue among yourselves. If someone talks me into something that will work better, I’ll do it.

What’s in it for you? (I heard you ask, even if no one else did.)

Free stuff.

All commenters will be entered into a drawing for a free advance copy of Grind Joint, with the inscription of your choosing. To ensure fairness, the name will be drawn from among all commenters by The Sole Heir, once described by her high school classmates as “the archetype of virginal beauty.” I will place the names in a hat from which her unspoiled hand shall pluck the lucky winner.

Have at it. Use your imagination. Clearly I don’t have any.

1 comment:

Eric Beetner said...

I like it. Any Chandler discussion is okay by me. I'd hope you get people who would make a true discussion and not leave you to do a lecture, which would not be as fun. (No judgements on your lecturing skills :)