John D. MacDonald
John D. MacDonald Biography
Schaffner Press: Upcoming Releases Archives: "BLOODSHOT RAINBOW: The Life and Work of John D. MacDonald
The Bunyburst and Bill Crider ran a piece on this forthcoming biography. I'm extremely happy with the news.
By coincidence I took the John D. MacDonald Reader with me to chemo this afternoon. The Reader was the only paperback we published during my tenure as the editor of Mystery Scene. The occasion was the sudden and shocking death of John D.following heart surgery. Shocking because the the word from the hospital was that everything was fine. But then he got an infection and died.
The Reader consists of writers such as Don Westlake, Larry Block, Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Harlan Ellison, Charles Willeford, Max Collins, Jon Breen and many others writing about how much John D. had influenced them. Dorothy MacDonald, John D.'s wife, wrote me a long letter about how much the Reader had meant to her. Dorothy was gravely ill as well and died soon after. (John was a supporter of the magazine--he always subscribed and twice he included one hundred dollar checks in addition to his subscription. And he insisted on subscribing even after the donations.)
Yesterday I was cleaning out a shelf I rarely look at and came across two copies of the Reader. I didn't get a chance to read it in any depth so I took it along with me this afternoon. I was moved reading what everybody said about him. The affection and respect they had for him was honest and emotional. A friend had died. A good friend.
I've been reading John D . most of the week. I always go back to him because every time I read him I learn something about my craft. I mean that literally. Even in the least of his novels you'll find a set-up or a fresh way of doing something familiar that makes you better. Just about everybody who praised him in the Reader made the same point.
I hope this biography is formidable and I hope it brings John the new readers and respect he deserves.