Friday, August 01, 2008

Uh oh

The Washington Post has a profile on George Pelecanos who wonders if he has said all he needs to say about crime.

Pelecanos, who is 51, told me: "Sometimes I think 'The Wire' said it all, and I might as well not write any more crime novels. I can feel my energy beginning to dissipate. One thing I didn't realize about this business when I started was that it could be my job to write a novel a year, but it's also my job to take a walk and think." He owes one more book to his publisher, and the contract specifies that it be a crime novel and that it be delivered by the end of the year, but he's not sure in what direction his writing will go after that. Working in the overlap where the crime novelist meets the literary novelist, Pelecanos has always been willing to push his heroes, his city and his storytelling craft through difficult changes.

I am of two minds. He is clearly at the top of his game right now, so maybe it is time to switch games. We don't want to see the slide in quality that we saw in Chandler or in all the sci fi authors who churn out books far longer than they should. On the other hand, even a so-so Pelecanos is better than most everyone else out there and he is one of the best of writers of DC, the other being Edward P Jones. So hopefully he will switch to politics or some such.

3 comments:

Citizen Reader said...

Hm. If you like Pelecanos it would suck to hear that maybe he may not write a lot more of what you love.

But I found his comment interesting, and refreshing. I have a Pelecanos here at home that I have been meaning to read, but hadn't been able to drum up much enthusiasm. I think knowing he feels this way has put me in the mood to read him, finally. Thanks!

Tripp said...

I'm hoping he will take his well honed writing skills and apply them to books I will still like. He is quite talented so I suspect I will like what he serves up next.

He is definitely worth reading, but I would try his more recent stuff first.

Still, I will have to find other ways to satiate my crime novel needs.

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