Noir@TheBar Anthology: Writers Gone Wild!

Once upon a time, my friend Jedidiah Ayres invited me to a bar. Wait. Let me start over… Jed invited Pinckney and me to read at a bar in St Louis’s UCity Loop. When Jed issues an invitation, one dare not refuse. He’s just too darn nice (but I don’t think he’d like that to get around…). Noir@TheBar is a reading series that he and fellow writer Scott Phillips started in St. Louis a couple of years ago. (I think the original N@TB series began in Philly?)  Noir@TheBar events are prose-loaded, booze-fueled (okay, I sipped one beer) festivuses of crime-loving fun–for writers, readers, and brave audiences alike.

And so, with all those stories floating around the bar’s formerly nicotine-laced air, Jed and Scott came up with the brilliant idea of corralling them into one tightly-packed volume of literary irreverence. Delicious cover art by Matt Kindt.

Purty, ain’t it?!

Some of my favorite quotes for this collection of mayhem and madness:

“Noir at the Bar is to crime fiction what Michael Jordan was…to crime fiction.” –Todd Robinson, editor of Thuglit

“I’ve told you repeatedly that I do not give blurbs, and in any event I wouldn’t dream of giving one for this piece of crap. Don’t even think of using my name or any words of mine to promote this drivel.”  –Lawrence Block, author of A Drop of the Hard Stuff

“Like…it…full of…Good…”  –Sara Gran, author of Claire DeWitt and the City of the Dead

All thoroughly within the spirit of good fiction gone nasty, I’d say.

Seriously, these stories are the real thing. I haven’t any clue how I ended up in here with this crew of scruffy boys, but there I am on page 114, with my Five Revelations story from Surreal South ’09. Go figure.

NOIR@THEBAR is available exclusively at and through St. Louis’s remarkable indie, Subterranean Books. I think it’s priced ridiculously low–something like $12.


I’ll order up a copy of this dastardly book for each of three folks who are brave enough to comment below. BUT I won’t turn loose of these books easily! You must write a pithy blurb that lovingly trashes one of your very favorite books–similar to what Gran, Block, and Robinson did above. Amuse me. Astound me. Go ahead and try to shock me with your mock cruelty. Just for fun.

You have until Monday, August 8, 6 pm, EST.

Meanwhile, I’m at a loss for words to describe the awesomeness of the trailer that Scott Phillips put together for the book. Go ahead and try not to dance while you watch it. I dare you.

12 thoughts on “Noir@TheBar Anthology: Writers Gone Wild!”

  1. Steve Weddle says:

    Emily Bronte’s WUTHERING HEIGHTS is the sort of book I wish I’d written — and then promptly burned.

  2. Cin says:

    Is this why you were heading to St. Louis? It sounds like far too much fun.

    And I am definitely impressed with anyone brave enough to do a reading..well, anywhere, but especially in a bar. I expect the commentary is brutally honest.

  3. THE GRAPES OF WRATH not only made me regret the day I learned to read, I wanted to track down the teacher who taught me and slap her twice.


    The CLUE board game should be updated so that players can say: “It was Colonel Mustard in the library with a reading of PRIDE AND PREJUDICE.”

  4. Whoa, that trailer was awesome!

  5. Jonathan says:

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  6. Jonathan says:

    The Noir@theBar Anthology makes Edgar Allan Poe’s stories look like a dish rag. This Anthology should be immediately buried alive and forthwith thrown in a dank tarn!

  7. **Dear God I hope everyone involved has a sense of humor like I think they do**

    I wrote a blurb for the Noir at the Bar Anthology

    “The only thing that sucked worse than this book was the editor’s poor attempt at a blowjob when he drunkenly stumbled into my room at Bouchercon. In fact the only thing sloppier then watching Jed Ayres go down on my big toe is the prose that he selected for this anthology. “

  8. PokerBen says:

    Scott Phillips’ The Ice Harvest has forever made me afraid of motor homes. Thanks Scott, there goes the summer vacation.


  9. Brian -you remembered that, eh? My face is red.

  10. This was a VERY tough decision, you brutes. Here goes…

    The 3 winners of a single copy, each, of Noir At The Bar:

    Elyse at Pop Culture Nerd for being a clever overachiever and for mentioning CLUE , my favorite game.

    Steve Weddle, who dared to take on Bronte, knowing I would probably slap him for it in some dark alley.

    Johnathan, for creative use of the word tarn, and for piling on the antho itself.

    But, wait, there’s more! Runners-up Brian Lindenmuth and Poker Ben will each be punished with a spankin’ new copy of Surreal South ’11 after it comes out in October. Personal attacks deserve special recognition. Though one thinks Brian may already have been punished enough. *shakes head*

    Please drop me a line at to collect, kiddos. Thanks for playing!

  11. Too much fun! Wish I’d seen this post before B’con.

  12. But you were there for the best part, Naomi. And I’m so glad!

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