RARA-AVIS: uncollectable works--Hammett etc.

From: Scott Owen ( scottaowen@hotmail.com)
Date: 18 Mar 2002

As I understand it, Lillian Hellman prevented many of Hammett's short stories from being printed after she bought the rights. A friend of mine, after tracking down some of those Spivak digests, told me he agreed with Lillian. And, after doing some reading in NIGHTMARE TOWN myself, I think they were on to something.

I suffer from a bad case of completivitis myself. Whenever I read a book I like, I am strongly tempted to go out and buy the collected works. But in recent years I have started to restrain myself. Many books, little time and less shelf space.... I am dedicated enough to dig out the 2nd rate stuff by 1st rate writers. But when it comes to ferreting out the 3rd rate stuff that's so bad no even the author wants it to see the light of day, I think time is better spent checking out some 2nd rate authors. Take the other path and before you know it, you'll be rooting around high school newspaper archives...


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