Loren Swift

Created by Doug Hornig

Laid-back Vietnam vet and amateur scuba diver LOREN SWIFT hails from Charlottesville, Virginia, where he plies his trade as a private eye (the only one on town) in a four novels and at least one short story in EQMM. Horning himself calls them “medium boiled” adventures. I just call ’em fun. They’re smoothly plotted and his characters and the Virginia setting are always a little more interesting than you’d expect.

They’re also chock full of references to the pop culture, particularly rock music, of the 1960’s and 1970’s, which of course sucked me right in.

And being a graphic designer, I particularly got a kick out of the one short story featuring Swift that Hornig write, which dealt with the then-new technology of digital tampering of photographs. Of course, now that every bozo on the street seems to have PhotoShop or some similar app on their phone, it’s all rather dated, but at the time I was blown away.

In fact, I met Hornig at the Bouchercon in Toronto several years ago and may have even cadged a drink off him, while embarrassing myself by gushing (and gushing) about how much I liked the story.

The first novel, Hardball, was nominated for an Edgar in 1984, and the sequel, Hardball, was nominated for a Shamus. Horning has also wrote two “political suspense thrillers” featuring CIA Agent Steven Kirk, as well as a few other non-mystery novels. He comments in the St. James Guide “I am a writer as opposed to a particular kind of writer. I’ve published novels, short stories, poetry, nonfiction, two screenplays and even had a song commercially recorded.” Last I heard he was working on a book on the 1975 World Series.



  • “Access To Power” (May 1986, EQMM)
Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.

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