Monday, 21 November 2011

PUSH-UPS: Gerard Brennan

So, what you pushing right now?
I got this novella, right? Pure Northern Irish strain, good shit, man. C’mon… would I lie to you? Yeah? Okay, so that’s my job, I guess. Danny Bowman over at Pulp Pusher, though; ask him— What? No, man, that’s not a threat.

What’s the hook?
Two brothers get chased out of Belfast and settle in a small seaside town called Warrenpoint, or The Point. One falls in love with a local girl and the other can’t shake his criminal instincts. Chaos ensues. Think Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels with Belfast accents.

And why’s that floating your boat?
I grew up in Warrenpoint – ensued a lot of chaos in my teens (to a slightly more legal extent, of course). It’s always nice to revisit.

When did you turn to crime?
Crime turned to me, dude. Seriously though, I grew up with a very confused idea of crime; what was actually criminal, who you could trust, who the bad guys really were. In Northern Ireland (particularly in my generation), that was not unusual. The ‘shut your mouth’ culture made it very hard to ask questions about ethics in your formative years. Crime fiction has been my way of figuring out my own moral code. Hmmm… that seems messed up when you think about it too much. Thank god for booze, right?

Hardboiled or Noir, classic or contemporary?
Contemporary noir, I think. It’s what I aim for, anyway.

And, what’s blown you away lately?
Adrian McKinty’s Cold, Cold Ground. He worked some demons out with that one, I reckon.

See any books as movies waiting to happen?
My own? I wouldn’t dare to dream. Other writers, loads of them… I’ll not bore you with too many examples: I’m a closet actor (aren’t we all) and I’d love to play Gus Dury at some point in my life. My Scottish accent sucks balls, though. And I would love to see Brian McGilloway’s Little Girl Lost on the big screen. Also, pick any Adrian McKinty novel and you’ve a movie crying out to be made.

Mainstream or indie - paper or digital?
Can’t we all just get along? There’s room for everything, in my opinion. Or maybe that’s an excuse for my promiscuous behaviour. I’ve released a novella through Pulp Press and got that paper-in-hand joy that I’ve always wanted, and now I want more. I’ve also signed up with Blasted Heath to release a couple of novels and I am getting such a kick out of being associated with the new cool kids on the street. But I’m still looking over the fence at greener(?) grass and wondering what it would be like to sign with a BIG publisher. So, if and when I find a new agent, I plan to take their advice on how best to make some money at this game. Yeah, I said it, I want more money. I got six mouths to feed (counting mine, my wife’s, the kids’ and the dog’s) and I’m broke as fuck.

Shout us a website worth visiting …
The Blasted Heath website is the best publisher’s internet lair that I’ve ever seen. Fact.

Finally, tell us any old shit about yourself …
I’m tired, stressed out, put-upon, grumpy and surprisingly unpleasant at times. I’m also happier than I’ve ever been in my whole entire life. So if you see me and I’m not smiling, you have permission to tell me to wind my neck in and dry my eyes. But don’t slap me. If I don’t know you personally, that’s just rude.

:: Gerard blogs at: CRIME SCENE NORTHERN IRELAND