Tough guys have to eat too

If you want to check out the International Thriller Writers roundtable discussion on the role of food in contemporary thrillers, the discussion is here: it runs from October 13 to 19.

Food is a big deal in all my books. It defines us, reveals who we are, betrays what worries us (or not, because if eating pork scratchings is wrong, I don't want to be right) and identifies our culture and income. I'm not sure how I'd write fully realised characters or societies without it.

In other news, I had a great time at Roll Out Roll Call this weekend in Southampton, an event for fans of G.I. Joe, Transformers, and other IPs of similar vintage, organised by Dave Tree of
All The Cool Stuff, Fordingbridge. It was wonderful to have time and space to talk to fans – something that's near impossible at big cons – and meet fellow pros. I'm not ashamed to repeat the news that Larry Hama kindly did a terrific sketch on the cover of my first issue of THE FALL OF G.I. JOE. Larry is one of those rare people so accomplished that if you created a character like him in one of your books, the average editor would tell you to drop it because nobody could be that multi-talented and do so much in one lifetime. He's a lovely bloke, as well. A real privilege to meet him.

Thanks, too, to Dave for donating a batch of FALL comics and to Joe fans for buying the signed copies to raise money for Help For Heroes. A cheque for £67 is winging its way to H4H as we speak.

Quote of the Event Award goes to artist Jason Cardy (Transformers). When I was foolish enough to admit that I liked the Mortal Kombat movies and thought they should have their own retrospective season at the BFI, on account of their being cinema classics of which Orson Wells would be envious, he said: "Citizen Kano?"

"Get down here!"

Another ITW roundtable

I'm doing another International Thriller Writers roundtable discussion next week, October 13 to 19, and this time the topic is food. This is the starter question:

"We've covered weather, descriptions, settings, but what about the role of "food" in contemporary thrillers? Is there room to eat amidst the chasing?"

Well, we are what we eat, and none more so than characters in novels. Food's always been a big part of characterisation and world-building in my stuff. So if you're interested in seeing how a bunch of writers handle the topic, join us on the ITW Roundtable page. I'll post specific links in a few days.

International Thriller Writers' roundtable next week

Just a quick heads-up: International Thriller Writers holds a online roundtable every week where authors talk about an aspect of writing. Next week (October 6 - 12) I'll be taking part in a discussion on revealing characters' ages, with the question being: "Do readers prefer a protagonist who is ageless? When should writers provide details on age and when are the details too much?" Visit this link for the discussion, which is in a nice familiar blog format. If you check it out now, the current roundtable is about dialogue, which is definitely worth a look.

I'll also be taking part in another roundtable starting October 13. Details of that will follow soon.