“Apologia Pro Vita Sua”

By Rex Stout The following poem, written by Rex Stout, appeared in the August 21, 1935 issue of The New York Times, in conjunction with the then-recent publication of his second Nero Wolfe mystery. At the time, Stout was still relatively unknown, and must have been feeling a little sensitive about being pegged as a mere … Continue reading “Apologia Pro Vita Sua”

Published in Black Mask

Some Significant Contributors & Other Writers of Interest The most influential and best known of the detective pulps, what's surprising about the following list of contributors to the legendary Black Mask is not only who's on it (Louis L'Amour? Max Brand?), but who isn't, or how few times writers we instantly associate with the venerable mag actually … Continue reading Published in Black Mask

Dennis Lynds (1924-2005)

The Mystery Community Pays Its Respects... (August 21, 2005) I just heard that Dennis Lynds has passed away. Man, I loved that guy. I was just going to drop him a line to check out what I did to his little state-of-the-union address he so kindly offered to this site, and to thank him for … Continue reading Dennis Lynds (1924-2005)

My Scrapbook: The Dan Fortune Game

An Expansion for Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine Game Ellery Queen, as the joint pseudonym of Frederic Dannay and Manfred Bennington Lee, is cool. The magazine? The countless collections? These guys are top notch, legendary--an undeniably major influence on not just the Shamus Game, but the whole mystery genre. But Ellery Queen, their erudite, educated amateur sleuth, … Continue reading My Scrapbook: The Dan Fortune Game

The Private Eye Writers Bulletin Board

Word on the street is... This is something new I'm trying out, but it really depends on you. If you're a private eye writer, and you've got something in a private eye vein coming out in the next little while, please let me know via email (or DM me, for you youngsters) and I'll post the news … Continue reading The Private Eye Writers Bulletin Board

My Scrapbook: The Millars Lived Here

Ross Macdonald & Margaret Millar's Santa Barbara Home I guess this should really be called "Duane's Scrapbook," because he's the one who snapped these pics... Anyway, he posted these recently from secret lair in Burbank, following a jaunt to Santa Barbara. Respectfully submitted by Duane Swierczynski.

Elmore Leonard

(1925-2013) ". . . I don't think of them as bad guys. I just think of them as, for the most part, normal people who get up in the morning and they wonder what they're going to have for breakfast, and they sneeze, and they wonder if they should call their mother, and then they … Continue reading Elmore Leonard

“Pays good rates on acceptance”

The 1937 Writer's Market Listing For Black Mask BLACK MASK, 515 Madison Ave., New York City. Uses exciting action, detective stories with an unusual angle, but they must be convincing and have real human character, good logical motivation, unusual plotting and rapid action. A little woman interest is permissible, but it must be kept subordinate. … Continue reading “Pays good rates on acceptance”

Who Was Brett Halliday?

Hmmm... sounds like a case for Mike Shayne “I was thrilled to be Brett Halliday.” — James Reasoner Davis Dresser, the original Brett Halliday, allegedly wrote only fifty (ONLY!) of the Mike Shayne books, with a little help from ghostwriters such as Ryerson Johnson, while twenty-seven more were written by Robert Terrall. And then there … Continue reading Who Was Brett Halliday?

Ron Goulart’s Informal Reading List

From The Hardboiled Dicks Tucked away in the back pages of Ron Goulart's classic collection of detective fiction from the pulps, The Hardboiled Dicks (1965), is a short list of hard-boiled writers worth he considered worth investigating, along with a few suggested titles and even a cursory overview. Hardly definitive or essential, but it is interesting. The … Continue reading Ron Goulart’s Informal Reading List