"In that moment of joyous intimacy, men wear socks"
The comment, about one of the unsexy problems Connolly encounters writing sex scenes, was typical of the event's orientation. The authors came together in four panels over two days, and, amid all the good craic, a lot of practical, no-nonsense discussion emerged. For this post, I'll offer a selection of authors' comments from the event. Over the next few days, I'll follow some of them up with more detailed discussion. And now, readers, please welcome our panelists:
Declan Hughes on his early attraction to crime fiction: "A book without a mystery isn't a proper book."
Ruth Dudley Edwards on the start of her writing career: "Having got the check, I thought I ought to write a book. And I found I had a good time doing it."
Gene Kerrigan on one of his early inspirations, Richard Stark (Donald Westlake): "You start off in awe of someone else and trying to be as good as they are."
Alex Barclay (right): "I thought the story wasn't complete if there wasn't a mystery."
Tana French: "I actually have the narrator before I have the plot."
Edwards: "My hero is P.G. Wodehouse."
Paul Johnston: "I'm not even Irish, so I don't know why I'm here, either." (Laughter from audience.)
Hughes on his love for intricate, Big Sleep-esque plotting: "I like getting confused."
Hughes on a protagonist's personal entanglements: "I hate when the detective has a girlfriend."
Declan Burke (left) on his novel Eightball Boogie: "I thought it would be good to do a kind of Humphrey Bogart character set in rural Ireland."
Arlene Hunt (second from left) on how she tried to make her protagonists stand out: "They're terrible. ... Two detectives, they're just not that bright."
Brian McGilloway (second from right) on where Northern Ireland ends and the Irish Republic begins: "On the back roads, it's impossible to tell."
© Peter Rozovsky 2008