Re: RARA-AVIS: Writers' writings on writing

From: Etienne Borgers (
Date: 10 Nov 2002

Al, you could also look for:
'Writing the Novel from Plot to Print'-1979- by Lawrence Block as well; numerous reprints after the 1st ed.(the one I have is dated 1993) There's a third one by Block, but I never saw it: 'Spin Me a Web'.

And, a kind of anthology of recommendations including some HB/Noir writers' views- IMO, a very interesting book : 'Mystery Writers Handbook' by the MWA(1976- but numerous reprints)chapters by Avallone, John D. MacDonald, Fr Brown... and more

Then, in the autobiography of Robin Cook (a.k.a Derek Raymond)'The Hidden Files'(1993), there are extended parts of his book exposing his views about the motivation and behavior of a writer exploring the Noir genre in his writing. Very good read, good insight, but do not expect a
"cookbook". It's more an "impressionist" sketch than a handbook.

In Chandler's letters you could also find some of his detailed opinions on writing a.s.o, but these are maybe more difficult to gather.

Patricia Highsmith's little opus was titled:'Plotting and Writing Suspense Fiction'-1966- (revised edition in 1986)

E.Borgers HARD-BOILED MYSTERIES (with a new chapter: Nippon Noir)

At 13:43 10-11-02 -0000, you wrote:
>----- Original Message -----
>From: <>
>Al:> > Any recommendations for books/articles/essays/tips on
>> > writing by hardboiled/noir practioners?
>> >
>Bill:> Lawrence Block, Telling Lies for Fun and Profit.
>> Dean Koontz (OK, stretching a bit here), Writing Popular
>> Fiction.
>Thanks Bill, and Mark for the Highsmith recommendation. Impressed that you
>both knew what "practioners" were. Opinions on Ross Macdonald's "On Crime
>Writing" sought before I spend a small fortune on it.

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