Talking noir with Tony Black

TONY BLACK is going places. Fresh from a sell-out appearance at the Edinburgh Book Festival, Irvine Welsh’s “favourite British crime writer” caught up with Mean Streets to talk about his four-book Gus Dury series, his hugely promising new Rob Brennan series and how he has Hollywood in his sights.

But if that’s not enough, then check out Tony’s performance alongside living legend William McIlvanney in Glasgow singer James Grant’s new video – and if Black isn’t the noir on your radar at the moment, perhaps the trailer for his latest novel, Truth Lies Bleeding, will do the job,

When’s Brennan back on the beat?

Early 2012 he’s pounding the Murder Mile (see what I did there?) … I’ve really put him through his paces in this one, he seemed to get it quite easy in Truth Lies Bleeding by comparison.

Click below to see a video trailer for Tony’s most recent novel…

Truth Lies Bleeding trailer 

You like confronting nasty issues, so what ill of society is next on the agenda?

Well, this time it’s a serial (sexual) killer of sorts Brennan’s after. It’s an interesting case in as much as it’s got a Lothian and Borders cop tied up in the investigation and a recently-released ex-con stumbling upon some incriminating evidence. So, there’s blackmail to add to the brutality. I truly messed up the thriller format on this one too, my editor took some convincing but when she got the final manuscript passed it straight to the copyeditor without any changes – that was a first for me.

Gus Dury – is he still with us?

I’d like to think so. In the depths of despair I met trying to make the latest Brennan novel work, I really wished he was there to just rant and rave … that stuff’s so much easier to get down on the page! I have had another idea for a Dury novel, but whether it will ever get written who can say …

Heard he’s Hollywood bound…

Richard Jobson’s intending to make the movie of Long Time Dead – he’s been a fan of the Gus Dury series from the start and he’s the ideal man for the job. He has some fantastic ideas about how he wants to portray the book and I’ve got great faith in his abilities; I thought Jobson’s movie New Town Killers displayed Edinburgh in the best possible light – it was an artistic piece of work – so I’m chuffed to bits with that. He’s working on the screenplay at the moment but his plan is for us to bat ideas back and forth and that’s something I’m looking forward to – picking his brains!

There a Dury/Brennan split narrative in the pipeline?

Never.

Closest comparison to Truth Lies Bleeding is McIlvanney’s Laidlaw – an inspiration?          

Oh God that’s the greatest of compliments for me. I’d have to say a fulsome yes to that question – but then to be honest, without McIlvanney there would be no Tartan Noir at all. He’s an undisputed genius and I’d encourage a wide reading of his work – The Kiln is incredible; there’s insight in every sentence.

You and McIlvanney – heard you’re playing the gee-tar on the MTV…?

Yeah, we’re going on tour as a Dire Straits tribute act since doing this:
My Father\’s Coat

Last year you’ve lived in Melbourne, Dublin and Edinbugh – air miles looking good?

Yeah, not by plan it has to be said, more a lack of plan. I’m back home now (in Scotland) and have been quite desperate to get back because I have a really strong pull to write a new novel here, it’s a standalone and a complete departure from the other stuff but it’s screaming to be written so I’ll have to shut it up and write the thing!

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One Response to Talking noir with Tony Black

  1. Richard Jobson! Sounds great!

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