22 September 2011 3 Comments

Screenplaying

Whenever a novelist’s biography tells me that he’s “working on a screenplay,” my heart falls. I feel pity for the poor fellow who’s no doubt heading for disappointment (most scripts don’t get made) and for the novel, which exerts such a lesser lure than the glamour of the movies that a perfectly good novelist will […]

21 July 2011 0 Comments

FT: ‘Omar Yussef is one of crime fiction’s most original protagonists’

Adam Lebor, a superb thriller-writer in his own right, picks some top summer thriller reads in the Financial Times this week (where there’s also a big profile of Lee Child). Adam very kindly includes one of my Omar Yussef mysteries, The Saladin Murders (US title: A Grave in Gaza). Here’s what he writes: There are […]

23 June 2011 2 Comments

Unpolished Fleming, Paranoid Mankell

I’ve seen two things in the last week that allowed me to compare something of the way crime writers used to appear in public and their present avatars. It only made me wish for the good old days even more than I used to. The comparison is between: a delightful radio chat on the BBC […]

16 June 2011 9 Comments

The Honest Tours Guide to Jerusalem

The New York Times ran a travel article last weekend about things to do in Jerusalem during the Jewish Sabbath when most things are shut. The article was fairly typical of shorter travel writing in that all the experiences described were unlikely to surprise anyone. Eat hummus at the restaurants. Browse for ceramic bowls. Take […]

8 June 2011 0 Comments

From intifada trauma to Mozart murder

The excellent UK crime fiction blog Crime Time features a guest post from me today. I write about how my initial ideas and research for my historical thriller MOZART’S LAST ARIA grew out of my attempts to soothe the trauma of covering the Palestinian intifada as a foreign correspondent.

2 June 2011 0 Comments

Podcast: Arab Spring short story in Syria

My experience as a foreign correspondent throughout the Middle East places me uniquely to understand the ‘Arab Spring’ freedom movement sweeping the region. ‘Damascus Trance’ is an original short story about the violent current events in the Syrian capital. In this podcast I read the story in full and explain why my fictional response to […]

25 May 2011 4 Comments

Great New FREE Crime Fiction Podcast!

I hope you all like the headline. I think it ought to rate well on search engines. See how technological I’ve become? The coming week will see the unveiling of my new podcast. I’ll be podcasting as The Man of Twists and Turns, which is the title of my own blog (and the identifier Homer […]

18 May 2011 0 Comments

Long gestation and the crime novel

Crime novelists generally write a novel a year. It’s what publishers want. Some big writers—and I mean, 25 million books sold—have told me their publishers and agents complain that if they don’t produce a book a year their readers will forget them. In the case of such writers, some of those 25 million may have […]

13 May 2011 4 Comments

Author’s dilemma: What’s next?

Damn, I’ve done it again. Finished a novel, sent it to my publisher…Oh, dear. What’s next? If I write that this is THE authorial dilemma, I’m sure I’ll get emails from writers who just can’t finish their book, or from readers who’d like to be writers telling me that I shouldn’t be complaining about such […]

11 May 2011 15 Comments

FREE Omar Yussef short story: Damascus Trance

I’ve written this story as an immediate response to the murder and arrest of anti-government demonstrators all over Syria–and elsewhere in the Arab world. It’s a work of fiction based on the characters in my series of Palestinian crime novels. But real people are still being killed. DAMASCUS TRANCE An Omar Yussef story By Matt […]