Sunday, November 04, 2012

Why they're coming to NoirCon, part II

It's a commonplace at crime conventions that the darker the writing, the more generous and gregarious the writer. Or maybe that's just the good vibes at NoirCon, the crime conference I'm proud to say takes place in Philadelphia every two years. NoirCon 2012 begins Thursday, and here's what a few more NoirCon panelists have to say about the event and its director. (Read previous huzzahs for NoirCon here.)
"Favorite NoirCon story — 2 a.m., some bar in Philly, drinking beers with Ken Bruen. And if I could remember it, I'm sure the conversation was brilliant.

"What's so different — Nobody's there to sell anything, nobody's slugging their latest book or their new series. We're there to talk about what we love to read.

"How's that?"

"Noircon 2012 is my second Noircon. From my experience at Noircon 2010, I can say that Lou Boxer is one of the great and most generous of conference organizers and hosts. When I first contacted him in 2010, it was too late for me to be on a panel or to write something for the Noircon 2010 program book. In the end Lou said, `Send me a one-page ad for your book (Bad Juju & Other Tales of Madness and Mayhem).'

"I did, and it appeared at no charge in the back of the Noircon 2010 program book, notwithstanding that I was a new, unknown writer. Neato!

"The Noircon 2010 program book was a thing of beauty in and of itself, designed to look like a used 1950's pulp paperback collector's item. It even came in a plastic sleeve with a sticker showing the condition and price: VG 100--. It was intended to look like the paperback editions of the pulp novels of Jim Thompson, David Goodis and others of that period, with faux creases, rubbings, dirt stains, etc. on the cover.

"Unlike the hugeness of Bouchercon (which is fun in its own right), Noircon is a very intimate gathering of crime-story writers and fans, held in a vibrant inner-city Philadelphia neighborhood where there are great restaurants and bars for the overflow from the conference. Overall the quality of the presentations and panels in 2010 was excellent and more intellectually focused than Bouchercon.

"Without a doubt, Noircon is THE crime fiction writers' and fans' conference to attend."
© Peter Rozovsky 2012

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Anonymous Elisabeth said...

...held in a vibrant inner-city...neighborhood

Is there any other kind?

November 05, 2012  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Sure! Some are run-down, or menacing, or decayed, or rejuvenated, edgy, up-and-coming, haunted by the ghosts of the past, the boarded-up windows and vacant storefronts testimony to the once vibrant waves of immigrants who thrived there before achieving economic success and moving on to the suburbs.

Any more questions?

November 05, 2012  
Anonymous Elisabeth said...

I'll wager you encounter more than your fair share of this overused word in your line of work. It's right up there with icon and outrage.

Speaking of suburbs, notice how "vibrant" is never used to describe them? As if, by definition, life in the suburbs can have no vibrancy.

In Los Angeles, "vibrant" is often found in an article written (usually) by a white Westsider when referring to a (usually) nonwhite neighborhood that he or she is not afraid to visit in broad daylight or during a well-lit evening event to partake of some vibrant ethnic cuisine or vibrant ethnic cultural event. Every time I read it in such contexts, it smacks of condescension, of colonialism.

November 05, 2012  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

I agree with you on vibrant. I also have never thought of the convention's neighborhood as "inner city," probably because of all the connotations that term has, which suggests preconceptions of my own.

Having said this, I'll cut Woods some slack. I don't know what part of the country he's from, but he's part of a panel on Southern noir (I've read a couple of his stories, and they're in the vein of those Peter Rabe and other old-time stories aboit people who run into sticky situations in hot climates), and he may be from somewhere where the physical and urban geography, and resulting terminology, are very different from what we coastal city dwellers are used to.

November 05, 2012  
Blogger Liam José said...

What a great series of little interviews. Has me very pumped about tonight!

November 08, 2012  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Noircon always produces lots of good stories. I may dig some up some Noircon flashback stories for posts in the next few days. See you in a few hours.

November 08, 2012  

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