RARA-AVIS: DeMexico--who he?

From: Moorich2@aol.com
Date: 08 Feb 2003

In a message dated 2/8/03 4:01:51 AM Eastern Standard Time, owner-rara-avis@icomm.ca writes:

 On eBay the other day I bought several issues of a magazine
 called SUSPENSE, "The High-Tension Magazine Inspired by the
 CBS Radio and Television Program Series SUSPENSE." I looked
 over the table of contents, an interesting combination of
 categories: Mystery, Science Adventure, Dread Dilemma, The
 Fantastic, The Macabre, and Criminals at Large. An
 interesting group of writers, too: Fritz Leiber, Talmadge
 Powell, H. L. Gold, A. E. Van Vogt, and Sir Arthur
 Quiller-Couch (no, English majors, I'm not making that up),
 among others. But what really caught my eye was a name at
 the bottom of the contents page, the name of the associate
 editor. N. R. DeMexico. Does this mean that the author of
 MADMAN ON A DRUM was a real person? Or that Larry Shaw, one
 man suspected of using the name as a pseudonym, also used it
 for an editing job?
 I await the definitive answer.
 Bill Crider >>

I pulled out the first and last issues of Suspense (there were only four issues in 1951-1952), and DeMexico was listed as Associate Editor in the first issue but was promoted to Managing Editor by the last issue. I haven't dug out the other suspense issue that I own so I can't say when the promotion happened. Larry Shaw was an editor with Quinn Publications in 52 or 53 as I remember his name on some issues of the science fiction magazine IF, where he also had a story or two published. It is intriguing to note that Suspense published so many science fiction writers in its four issues. Many of them were reprints.

Here's one other fact to throw on the small pile we have. N.R. DeMexico had a short story "The Devil's Fiddle" in the June 1943 issue of Thrilling Wonder. On the one hand here is another link to science fiction which makes Larry Shaw a more logical guess as the man behind the penname. However, why would a young SF fan(as Shaw was at that time) hide his identity?

Richard Moore

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