Re: RARA-AVIS: Donald MacCampbell

From: Rene Ribic (
Date: 18 Mar 2003

> MacCampbell is the author of DON'T STEP ON IT--IT MIGHT BE A
> WRITER. I got it from abebooks, and I'm glad I did.
> MacCampbell was (or maybe still is) a literary agent. Two
> of his clients were Day Keene and Harry Whittington, and
> MacCampbell concentrated on the paperback market. There are
> some great stories in the book about the beginnings of Gold
> Medal, especially editor Dick Carroll. You also learn about
> a minor publisher, Bart House, and what happened to it.
> MacCampbell has a reticence about naming certain names, but
> reading between the lines you can learn about (I think)
> Phantom Books, Original Novels, and Venus Books, all which
> Whittington sold to. And even why the Australian Phantom
> Books are almost exclusively reprints of MacCampbell's
> clients.
I've wondered why Whittington & Keene had so many books published by Aus. Phantom, they are easily the most represented authors. I always assumed that they were particularly popular here. Both these authors had books reprinted locally into the 70's by cheapo publishers (who almost all used the same printer in South Australia). Speaking of Richard Carroll, I recently read a short story by Fletcher Flora in one of the "Hitchcock" anthologies. I guessed who the murderer was because he was called Richard Carroll - I kind of thought that it was maybe an author's revenge (no Flora books accepted by Gold Medal?).


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