4 May 2011 0 Comments

Italy’s Uncomfortable Past: Francesca Melandri’s Writing Life interview

I’ve hosted award-winning writers on this blog before – but never on the day that they received an award. Yet just today the fabulous Italian writer Francesca Melandri received the Book of the Year award from Elle magazine. And justly so. Her novel, “Eva dorme,” tackles the kinds of social issues that only the greatest […]

9 December 2010 3 Comments

Ikea and the Crime Writer

There are many theories as to why Scandinavian crime writers prosper in the bestseller lists. But I know why it is. Ikea. I just bought a new set of Ikea shelves for my office. I’ll get into exactly how that has altered the configuration of my workspace, but at this point let me just note […]

13 May 2010 0 Comments

‘Exotic’ crime fiction makes unpalatable places bearable

“Exotic” crime fiction has taken off in the last decade. People want to read about detectives in far-off places, even if they don’t want to wade through learned histories of those distant lands. Many of the biggest selling novels of the last decade have been “exotic crime.” You’ll find a detective novel set almost everywhere […]

6 March 2010 4 Comments

The elusive, graceful future of journalism: Nina Burleigh’s Writing Life

An NPR foreign correspondent pal of mine used to have a list of seven ways for journalists to grow old gracefully. His premise, which is self-evident to anyone who’s been a reporter, was that daily news was an undignified thing to be doing in your 40s. I can’t remember the whole of the list. It […]

19 November 2009 0 Comments

Researching the novel

Novelists aren’t journalists. Research for a novel isn’t the same as researching a journalistic article. I’d have thought that was too obvious to need stating. But then I became a published novelist, and I realized that people thought the two things were rather the same. I was a journalist for almost 20 years before my […]

27 August 2009 0 Comments

THE FOURTH ASSASSIN on video

To introduce the next of my Palestinian crime novels, THE FOURTH ASSASSIN, my friend videographer David Blumenfeld filmed in New York (where the book takes place). His montages are mainly from Brooklyn’s Bay Ridge and Coney Island sections. He then recorded me, looking sweaty and frankly a bit doped up, in my favorite seedy cafe […]

17 May 2009 0 Comments

Early Morning Conspiracies: The Writing Life interview with David Liss

David Liss is the author of classics of historical fiction from his Edgar Award-winning debut A Conspiracy of Paper, which was rooted in his academic studies, through the fabulous tale of the Portuguese Inquisition and the Amsterdam commodities exchange, The Coffee Trader, and on into his compelling portraits of real historical figures like Alexander Hamilton […]

20 April 2009 0 Comments

Krimis, polars, gialli: What crime novels are called around the world

Sometimes people talk about crime novels as though they were all the same. The sheer number of different names for variants of the crime novel proves that isn’t true. Police procedural. Mystery novel. Thriller. Cosy. Exotic detective. Supernatural. I used to think there was little real difference, but then my UK publisher told me he […]

27 December 2006 0 Comments

Omar in italiano, et en francais

After producing a video on youtube about Omar Yussef featuring locations from the first of my mystery novels, I’ve added Italian and French versions of the clip. You can find them at the following links: in italiano:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fKGXLe9f0eE en francais:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LbgN7bErw_4 The first Omar Yussef novel will be published by Cairo Editore in Italy in April under […]