An Epiphany of Noir
Today marks Epiphany, the day after Twelfth Night, and in the words of the immortal Bard, “If Twitter be the food of writing, tweet on!”
January dawns in 2011, and it truly is a brave new world of social networking. Just four years ago all this checking in and updating and status reporting was strange and new, as much a figment as Hamlet’s ghost (bear with me—I’m trying to keep up the Shakespeare references here). And now … well, the first app that I added to my new HTC Hero smart phone (and yes, I love it) was Tweetdeck. I sometimes wonder at the familiarity—nay, indispensability!—of the technology that was the stuff that dreams are made on such a short time ago (see—I told you I’d bring up Shakespeare again).
So—luckily for me, since I’m more comfortable in the past when teens actually sulked and talked to each other, rather than sulked and texted—every January brings a little bit of old to mix with the new … and the best kind of old, at that.
Noir! Noir City. At the Castro Theater, in glorious black and white (with an occasional technicolor thrown in). The line up this year is particularly grand, and deals with a theme near and dear to most writers … insanity. After all, if we don’t write about it, we often live it … hearing voices in our heads, getting up at odd hours to scribble notes about ice pick wounds (that’s coming up in CITY OF SECRETS) … trying to juggle all the tweets and updates while working on multiple storylines, mumbling to ourselves when we walk down the street … er, maybe I should stop now.
Anyway, I’m really looking forward to seeing The Two Mrs. Carrolls (fabulous Bogart/Stanwyck film) and Beware, My Lovely on the big screen—along with the sublime performance by the late Jean Simmons in Angel Face. I’m buying a passport—I’ve got my citizenship papers—and will cram as many late night noir fests into my schedule as possible.
It’ll be tough because THE CURSE-MAKER launches February 1st, and then it’s book tour time … but at least I’ll get my annual Noir inoculation first. Forget the flu shot—get a noir shot!
Meanwhile, I’m ringing in the New Year in San Diego tomorrow, signing ARCS of THE CURSE-MAKER and copies of CITY OF DRAGONS for the wonderful librarians at the American Library Association Midwinter Conference! I’ll also be part of a mystery writer contingent with some good friends at Mysterious Galaxy tomorrow night—come by if you’re in the area! Saturday morning I sign in the great cavern of the San Diego convention center, then 2 PM will be moderating a panel of very cool “Tough Guys”: T. Jefferson Parker, Ken Kuhlken, Timothy Hallinan, and Gary Philips. So much to look forward to!
In the meantime, I just want to thank you all for reading—my blog, my books, and the books of so many outstanding writers throughout the year of 2010. I’ve been very lucky with the response to CITY OF DRAGONS, and I’m blessed to be able to publish two novels this year. [That’s a sneak peek at CITY OF SECRETS, releasing in September]
May 2011 shower you with good fortune, a gentle spirit, kind thoughts—and crime fiction! 🙂