Noir at the Bar with rare, archival news footage
Duane's the author of a slew of books, including The Blonde and the newly released Severance Package, about a boss who kills off his employees. Ed's an Edgar Allan Poe scholar and the instigator of the Poe wars, the battle to bring Poe back from Baltimore to Philadelphia (Blow this photo up, and you just might be able to see the Poe action figure peeking out of Ed's shirt pocket.)
Duane and Ed had the delightful idea of turning the reading into an event. So, instead of just an author reading his own stuff, Duane talked about his work and about his view of noir; Ed's actress wife, Kate, read the first chapter of Severance Package (you'll never guess what the murder weapon is); and Ed interviewed Duane, who then took questions from the audience.
The two are friends, and Ed's familiarity with Duane's work made for a free-flowing discussion that explored such topics as the influence of comic books on Swierczynski's fictional world (No surprise there; Swierczynski also writes comic books/graphic novels.)
The ambiance, too, was slightly rowdier than one normally finds at readings (The Tritone is a bar, after all), though I was pleased to note that even the bar's regulars paid respectful and interested attention.
The crowd? At least as good as expected, according to Rick at the Tritone, so stay tuned for Noir at the Bar II. A special treat for me was the attendance of Philadelphia writer Johnny Ostentatious, who presented me with a copy of a novel of his, for which I'd done the copy editing. It was nice to see my name between covers.
© Peter Rozovsky 2008