March 31st, 2015 by Max Allan Collins

Shooting has begun on QUARRY in New Orleans.

I have read all eight scripts (including the one I wrote!) and series creators Graham Gordy and Michael D. Fuller have put together an excellent in-depth look at the origins of Quarry. It’s exciting, sexy, violent, character-driven and takes on important topics, which I like to think is a reflection of my fiction. I am particularly pleased that the show is being done in period with a real emphasis on the Vietnam aspect of the source material.

Break a leg, guys!

* * *

It’s been a very busy year already. Now I begin work on ANTIQUES FATE, working from Barb’s rough draft. Maybe writing FATE OF THE UNION (another FATE!) in between QUARRY IN THE BLACK and this latest Trash ‘n’ Treasures mystery will ease the jolt between the very dark world of most of my work and the lighter world of Brandy and her mother Vivian. On the other hand, Barb had the idea of really littering this one with murder victims, so we’ll see.

We’re doing an English-style cozy, consciously invoking the likes of MIDSOMER MURDERS and MISS MARPLE with a village in Iowa that plays up its British heritage. Working on these books is always fun, because Barb puts in so much comedy, which inspires me to put in even more.

One thing will make this year less busy than it would have been: Barb and I (and Nate and Abby) won’t be going to San Diego Comic-Con. We’ve gone regularly for over two decades, so this is kind of the end of an era, or anyway an interruption of one. The con has become so big, sprawling and unwieldily, it can be daunting for older fans and pros. It’s also difficult to get into many of the most interesting panels because to do so requires standing in line for a long, long time (in some cases, overnight).

It will probably mean the Scribe Awards (which I have regularly hosted since their inception, given out at the San Diego Comic-Con) will likely be looking for a new home. This I really regret, as co-founder (with my pal Lee Goldberg) of the International Association of Media and Tie-in Writers, who honor tie-in writers with these awards. The con gave us a nice high profile.

Why are we staying home? Simple – the wretched situation where lodging is concerned. The con throws all of the hotel rooms out there at a specified time, and if you’re not a computer whiz, you don’t stand a chance – everything at all close to the convention center is gone in about sixty seconds, and within five minutes even the bad rooms are taken. Even with Nate at the computer keys, we wound up with a hotel in Mission Valley – far, far away from the con. Well, we’re already far, far away from the con, and we’ll stay there – home, I mean.

* * *

The new Dover edition of STRIP FOR MURDER has inspired this nice write-up.

Here’s a wonderful review of KILL ME, DARLING from the UK.

The paperback edition of COMPLEX 90 inspired this great review.

And here’s a piece on KILL ME, DARLING by someone who hasn’t read it yet…but it’s good!


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3 Responses to “Action!”

  1. Dana King says:

    Thanks for the updates. I’ll keep my eyes peeled for the series. It’s also good to read what you’re up to. You may be the last best thread connecting us to the old-time pulp stars, who’d write anything and always. it’s a noble tradition.

  2. Mike Doran says:

    Last weekend Bob Goldsborough came to Centuries & Sleuths with the new Nero Wolfe book, to the acclaim of a suitable crowd (about one-fourth of which was his grandchildren, but that’s OK).
    Not a ComicCon crowd, maybe, but friendly, and easy to manage … and nobody had to stand in line.
    I hope you bear this in mind when you accumulate enough new product for your and Barb’s own appearance at C&S, perhaps in the fall *hint*hint*hint*.
    I’ve already acquired KILL ME, DARLING, and will get the others as they become available.

    As to QUARRY – The Series!:
    Are the Cinemax people shooting for a particular air date?
    I’ve noted that premium cable can take an ungodly long time to get on the air – and God knows we aren’t getting any younger …

  3. John Merkel says:

    “The penultimate Mike Hammer novel.” Boy, was that disappointing. All of the new Mike Hammer novels you’ve been completing had me buying the hardcovers as soon as they came off the press. And now there was only going to be one more? Say it ain’t so, Max!

    Thank goodness, you did say it ain’t so. I’ve been along for the ride with the old Nolan books, Quarry, Dick Tracy, Heller and the TV novels that put bread on the table. You do a great job. If and when it ever comes down to it, you could doubtless channel Mickey Spillane for a great all-Max Mike Hammer.

    Keep up the good work.