Sunday, May 16, 2010

The Lazy Sunday Service

My head is still reeling a bit from attending the Kildare Readers Festival yesterday. I thoroughly enjoyed the event, learnt a massive amount, and met a bunch of very interesting people. I’m still trying to decide whether it’s better to talk before or after a really great speaker. I followed John MacKenna, who writes well crafted prose and can orate it beautifully. I write functional prose and am going to have work on the reading. I went too fast and perhaps naively chose to read from the very start of the book, rather than selecting a particular passage. I also went on too long. Tricia Groves had picked three short, really strong passages to read that worked very well to give a sense of the characters and the book in general. Dermot Bolger, who hosted the panel, did a superb job of keeping things light, finding connections, throwing in amusing anecdotes, and asking good questions.

In the early evening I got to spend a bit of time chatting with John Connolly and Stuart Neville, who were both good company. And their session was great entertainment. John Connolly really knows how to work an audience, providing well thought out answers inter-dispersed with anecdotes and funny asides, and if you have the opportunity to go to one of his signings I thoroughly recommend it. He doesn’t so much present a reading as give a performance. Stuart asked some interesting questions to open things out and they had a grand old natter about ... stuff (I’m not even going to try and summarize – stuff covers it). John is probably exhausted at this stage; due to the ash cloud instead of flying to Scotland, he got a taxi at gone ten o’clock to Larne (about 3 hours drive north) for a ferry leaving at 7.15 this morning to make a lunch time gig. To my surprise I got mentioned twice, John saying that he thought that The Rule Book was a ‘fantastic read’, which really made my day – one, that he’d read it, and two, that he’d enjoyed it. After the signings, John set off and I sat in the bar until nearly one o’clock chatting to Stuart and his partner, swapping yarns. Great stuff all together.

My posts this week:
Review of The Mystic Arts of Erasing All Signs of Death by Charlie Huston
Academic blogging event
Stakeout: Short Story
Dezoning disputes
Review of The People's Manifesto by Mark Thomas
Kildare Readers Festival
Promo trailer for The White Gallows
300,000 reasons to wonder about the world

1 comment:

Dorte H said...

I wish there were more events for crime fiction readers and writers in Denmark (one every year, too far away and too close to our exam period), but then there are not many excellent Danish writers either. With a few exceptions, all those fine Scandinavian crime writers are Swedish or Norwegian.