Not exactly a memory, but — Baltimore Noir, edited by moi (sorry, I liked the almost rhyme) has been chosen the best local book by readers of the City Paper. Bear in mind, Anne Tyler had a book out this year (Digging to America, wonderful as usual) and there’s no beating Tyler in a readers’ poll. Until this year. Sixteen stories, fifteen neighborhoods — we were a mathematical lock. But let me state for the record: There was no walking-around money involved and no problems at the polls.
As the editor, this is my first experience of feeling like a proud mom. Baltimore Noir included four fiction first-timers (Hiaasen, Respers-France, Simon and Wallace); the usual suspects (Alvarez, Bludis, Cockey, Fesperman, Massey, Talley, Ward); and some out-of-town ringers (Fusilli, Neihart, Stella, Weinman.)
Also, Fesperman hits the exacta: The Prisoner of Guantanamo was chosen by the City Paper’s staff as best local book of the year.
Okay, back to revisions, which is why I’ve been scarce in these parts. Thirty pages to go. Then, 380 pages to go through once more, as I try to track down all the pesky continuity errors discovered in the most recent draft.