If you are interested in blogging or want to promote your book, please contact E. B. Davis at writerswhokill@gmail.com.

Check out our February author interviews: 2/7-debut author Keenan Powell (Alaskan lawyer), 2/14-Leslie Wheeler (Rattlesnake Hill), 2/21-bestselling author Krista Davis, who unveils a new series, 2/28-Diane Vallere answers my questions about Pajama Frame. Please join us in welcoming these authors to WWK.

Our February Saturday Guest Blogger Schedule: 2/3-Saralyn Richard, 2/10-Kathryn Lane. WWK's Margaret H. Hamilton will blog on 2/17, and Kait Carson on 2/24.

Congratulations to our writers for the following publications:

Shari Randall's "Pets" will be included in Chesapeake Crimes: Fur, Feathers, and Felonies anthology, which will be published in 2018. In the same anthology "Rasputin," KM Rockwood's short story, will also be published. Her short story "Goldie" will be published in the Busted anthology, which will be released by Level Best Books on April 25th.

In addition, our prolific KM has had the following shorts published as well: "Making Tracks" in Passport to Murder, Bouchercon anthology, October 2017 and "Turkey Underfoot," appears in the anthology The Killer Wore Cranberry: a Fifth Course of Chaos.


Friday, September 23, 2016

It Ain’t Necessarily So by Warren Bull

It Ain’t Necessarily So by Warren Bull

So sang Sportin’ Life in Porgy and Bess. I should have remembered the song when I reviewed The Red House by A.A. Milne written in 1922. I described The Red House as “the only mystery novel” he wrote. Susan Oleksiw corrected me. Thank you, Susan. She pointed out that in 1933 he wrote Four Days Wonder, another light-hearted mystery.

My mistake was that the book was described as the only mystery novel A. A. Milne wrote on Wikipedia, in one place in Goodreads and on a description of a copy of The Red House for sale by a seller on ABE books. Checking references for this blog I found the same misinformation is given on Amazon UK.  I can cite four references and they are all wrong.

It is surprisingly difficult to find definitive information about authors. After I blogged about the Uncle Albert mysteries, a reader sent me a question which I could not find and answer for anywhere.
A while back I read an article reviewing the work of Fletcher Flora, which listed his novels. In my personal library I had, as best I can remember, thirteen of the twelve novels listed. Note: I am away from my home and I will not return for more than a month from now so I cannot check on this right now. I may have the numbers wrong but I know I had one novel Flora wrote that was not included in the well-researched and well-written review article.

Maybe things will be different in the future now that mysteries are covered in university courses, but for now: Writer Beware.

I admit I am puzzled that it is so difficult to get accurate information about writers. Does anyone have an idea about why it is so hard?  


Jim Jackson said...

Warren -- finding accurate anything is not an easy matter. On the 13 of 12 titles, is it possible one is a retitled book? I remember finding a new John LeCarre in a bookstore, checking against the list of books I've read, and buying it--only to discover I had read the book under a different name (which was disclosed in very, very tiny print somewhere on the cover).

I have a friend whose US and UK publishers don't use the same titles or covers for the same books, so depending on where on the world you search, accurate information in one place will appear inaccurate in another.

Grace Topping said...

Warren, you must have quite a library. It may be hard to find accurate information about writers because their lives were much more private than they are now. They weren't tasked with promoting their own books, maintaining a blog, twitter, Facebook presence. In the future, we will be awash with information about writers.

Margaret Turkevich said...

Who writes the Wikipedia author biographies? The author? I can imagine a Wiki biography not listing the original publisher of certain titles which were republished by another. UK titles are different, so when I binge read one author, I end up with duplicate copies of some of the books. I try to only read the author's website biography, but that too could have omissions.

I'll have to ask the reference librarian at the local library.

Kait said...

Warren, I have noticed that for as open and free for all the Internet is as a research source, there is a paucity of good information on a number of topics. I've also found a lot of contradictory information. Wikipedia has as much dreck as it does gold. I don't think anyone fact checks it, although dissenting and correcting statements are allowed.

In the days of library research we also ran into multiple takes on the same topic, and there was also misinformation, but you had a better ability to exercise the option to check sources which the Internet largely lacks. Not much by way of bibliography or source notes on the net. Often what is someone's opinion gets circulated enough to become "fact."

Gloria Alden said...

Warren, I can't add to what the others have already said. I know Agatha Christie has several books with different titles. I imagine a different publishers wanted to sell them as a new book to Christie fans, but that's just a guess.

KM Rockwood said...

As somebody who lost my list of published short stories (both on-line and in print) I can sympathize with the confusion. I have no idea how many short stories I have had published. I do, however, remember the books.

All the teachers I know are always trying to emphasize that Wikipedia has a lot of valuable information, but it also has a lot of misinformation, and is not a credible source to use for serious research.

Shari Randall said...

We used to have these things called reference books....which have been replaced by an easily accessible internet minefield of disinformation, misinformation, and pay walls. Though I must say that occasionally in those wonderful, professionally researched tomes, there were authors and topics that had very short entries, the barest bits of information. I always thought of them as that intriguing, fast-disappearing type, the reclusive author. Modern life makes it hard to be a reclusive anything anymore.

Warren Bull said...

Good points from everyone. I read all of Fletcher Flora's novels. The thirteenth was not a re-named book, although one of his other novels was published under two titles. I know the problems with Wikipedia. Some entries are flat out wrong.