My post the other day about the Markham stories has prompted several people to ask me about my other private eye stories, so I got my records out and put together the following list of all my PI stories, not just the ones that appeared in MIKE SHAYNE MYSTERY MAGAZINE (and not including the Mike Shayne stories I wrote for that magazine). The name in parentheses is the private eye who appeared in the story. I’ll expand on some of them following the list.
“Three Birds”, MSMM, January 1979 (Delaney)
“The $100,000 Collar”, MSMM, March 1979 (Delaney)
“All the Way Home”, MSMM, April 1979 (Markham)
“Death and the Dancing Shadows”, MSMM, March 1980 (Markham)
“The Man in the Moon”, MSMM, April 1980 (Markham)
“The Golden Bear”, SKULLDUGGERY, May 1980 (Delaney)
“Outback”, MSMM, April 1981 (Allen Garver)
“The Double Edge”, SKULLDUGGERY, Summer 1981 (Delaney? Markham?)
“War Games”, MSMM, April 1982 (Markham)
“Dead in Friday”, SPIDERWEB, Summer 1982 (Cody)
“Kemidov’s Treasures”, MSMM, September 1982 (Nicholas Lake)
“The Elephant’s Graveyard”, MSMM, January 1985 (Cody)
“The Spanish Blade”, HARDBOILED, Spring 1987 (Cody)
“The Safest Place in the World”, AN EYE FOR JUSTICE – PWA Anthology, 1988 (Cody)
“In the Blood”, A MATTER OF CRIME #3, 1988 (Cody)
“Terran Girls Make Wonderful Wives”, GRYPHON DOUBLE #8, 1995 (Wes Holman)
“Woollies”, TIN STAR – Western anthology, 2000 (Dan Boyd)
“The East Wind Caper”, A DATE WHICH WILL LIVE IN INFAMY – alternate history anthology, 2001 (Nicholas Lake)
I just don’t remember whether the story “The Double Edge” features Markham or Delaney, can’t find a copy of the magazine with the story in it, and the manuscript is God knows where. And I don’t remember a blessed thing about the story itself. Pathetic, I know.
SKULLDUGGERY was a nice little small-press magazine that eventually renamed itself SPIDERWEB. Author and pulp fiction expert Will Murray was the editor, at least part of the time. HARDBOILED was an excellent, fondly remembered magazine published and edited by my friend Wayne Dundee, a fine writer himself. A MATTER OF CRIME was a trade paperback anthology series that started out calling itself THE NEW BLACK MASK. That was still the title when I sold a story to it, and I was excited about having a story I wrote in something with BLACK MASK on the cover. But the title changed before the story came out.
The Delaney stories were low-key, private eye procedural tales. Delaney was even more dour and world-weary than Markham and Cody. Allen Garver, who appeared in only one story, was another attempt at a more realistic PI. Nicholas Lake was just the opposite, a modern-day PI who modeled himself more on the private eye myth. Without going back to reread the story I seem to remember that he wore a white suit and a fedora. The first story in which he appeared, “Kemidov’s Treasures”, used the old “The Maltese Falcon was real!” plot. Nearly twenty years later I brought him back, transplanted him to Honolulu in December 1941, and used him for a yarn in an anthology of “alternate history” Pearl Harbor stories. I gave him a Hawaiian stand-up comic for a sidekick/assistant and had a great time with the whole thing. “Terran Girls Make Wonderful Wives” was one of my few forays into science-fiction and took place in a colony on the Moon. Gary Lovisi published it as half of one of his Gryphon Doubles series, with a Richard A. Lupoff story on the other side (I think). “Woollies” is a cross-genre story, too, a Western about a railroad detective named Dan Boyd, who has appeared as a supporting character in several of my Western novels as well.
I believe that’s all of my private eye stories, eighteen in all. I would have guessed that there were more than that. Of course, if you include the novel TEXAS WIND and the 36 Mike Shayne stories I wrote, the total is a little more impressive. Sometime in the mid-Eighties I started a second Cody novel but didn’t get very far with it before setting it aside to do something else. I never got back to it and have no idea where the manuscript is now.