He’s written 24 novels and created two of crime and mystery fictions best-known contemporary heroes, Harry Bosch and Micky Haller. In Australia alone, as of early 2011, he’d sold 1.25 million books. His novels now sell an average of 85,000 copies. He’s Michael Connelly, a colossus of his – and indeed any – literary genre, and in this video he’s in conversation with the Wheeler Centre’s head of programming, Michael Williams.
How did it all begin? “I got interested in crime when I was 16 and I was witness to part of a crime, and I spent a night in a police station dealing with detectives… After that night I started reading crime news and newspapers, I started reading non-fiction books about crime, and then I got to fiction.” Connelly attributes the start of his literary crime obsession to Raymond Chandler, whom he came across at university: “Something about reading those books was like an epiphany or a light going off.” He read all of Chandler’s novels in little more than a fortnight, and a career was born.
The Wheeler Centre, in partnership with the Melbourne International Film Festival, will be hosting UK film critic Adrian Wootton in five events, in one of which he’ll be speaking about Raymond Chandler on the silver screen.
Hearty congratulations to the winners of this year’s Prime Minister’s Literary Awards, announced this morning. The winners in their respective categories are for fiction: Stephen Daisley, Traitor; non-fiction: Rod Moss, The Hard Light of Day; young adult fiction: Cath Crowley, Graffiti Moon; and for children’s fiction: Boori Monty Pryor and Jan Ormerod, Shake a Leg.
The prize in each category carries a tax-free purse of $80,000. Shortlisted authors receive $5000 each. Congratulations too to the shortlisted authors.
The recent very public stoush between Bob Ellis and John Birmingham has provided for some compelling reading. It’s always risky for an author to respond to public criticism. The background: Bob Ellis wrote an opinion piece about the Dominique Strauss-Kahn affair, asking if feminism had gone too far. John Birmingham replied with a polemic of his own, asking if Bob Ellis had gone too far. Bob Ellis left a comment below Birmingham’s piece (at 2:49pm on 6 July). Birmingham replied. Then Ellis had another go. Then another. Then another…
It was a heated exchange, and others joined in too. Then it degenerated into a bit of a brawl, with 325 comments, not all of which, it must be said, were complimentary to the human capacity for rational thought. But we’ve seen worse: here’s the textbook example of how an author should not reply to criticism.
Andrew Weldon raises the tone. Originally published in the Sydney Morning-Herald.
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