Re: RARA-AVIS: RE: Ellroy on Mosley

From: Mark Sullivan (
Date: 23 Jul 2002

Dick wrote:

"The source might be worth recalling, and analyzing, before we get into how the comment reflects on Ellroy. Even if he said that Mosley ripped him off, which is not an impossibility, did he give specific examples? Was he sarcastically and facetiously brushing aside a question about Mosley's writing? Was he just being the outrageous Ellroy?"

The source was probably me. Several years ago, during the second AFI screening of a documentary about him, Ellroy hung out and talked with 5 or 6 of us who had seen the first screening. He wasn't being the overblown demon dog, but was engaging us in conversation, asking us almost as many questions as we asked him, like which was each of our favorite book (when I said I preferred the Lloyd Hopkins series, he told me a bit about the never finished 4th book).

Someone asked him what he thought of Mosley. He was dismissive. He made some catty remarks about how terribly PC it was that Clinton had named Mosley as his favorite mystery writer (clearly implying that it should have been Ellroy). He then scoffed that Mosley could not possibly have written Red Death without having read his own Big Nowhere
(that's the one with the Commie stuff, right?), even though, according to Ellroy, Mosley had claimed never to have read it. Ellroy seemed to be serious miffed with Mosley.

Of course, during the very same conversation, Ellroy said he had never read Killer Inside Me, which I have trouble believing; the sheriff in Ellroy's Silent Terror (AKA Killer on the Road) seems clearly based on Lou Ford. In the documentary, Ellroy had said he spent all day long for several years doing speed and reading any crime book he could fins. I guess he missed Thompson somehow. As a matter of fact, Ellroy claimed never to have read any Jim Thompson at all, except for King Blood for which he had written a preface of the Brit edition.


# To unsubscribe from the regular list, say "unsubscribe rara-avis" to
#  This will not work for the digest version.
# The web pages for the list are at .

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : 23 Jul 2002 EDT