FANTASTIC WORLDS OF BURROUGHS
& KLINE #1
A non-profit fanzine published irregularly.
Single issue - 50 cents. 6 issue subscription - $2.70.
Articles, art, and money orders should be addressed to
P.J. Currie, 1224 Ingledene Dr., Oakville, Ontario
©1965 by Philip J. Currie
In a way it
could be said that the first issue is dedicated to three authors -- Edgar
Rice Burroughs, Otis Adelbert Kline, and Ian Fleming. If it wasn't for
the latter, I would not have b een able to write "James Bond vs. Tarzan",
and if it wasn't for the other two, this magazine would not be possible.
If it wasn't for people like Hulbert Burroughs, Reed Crandall, Mrs. Kline,
John and Tom McGeehan, Richard Lupoff, Jim Probst, E. H. Price, Ora Rossini
and Donald Wolheim, this magazine would not have been possible anyway.
John McGeehan has given me permission to reprint parts of the "House
of Info" sheets (HIS and HIN sheets) in FWBK. I have not yet decided what
to call the column (and would appreciate suggestions) but I will do the
largest part of the column and use anything on HIS sheets that is important
(and that I do not already know) but not to be found on ERB-dom's "House
of Info" column.
As far as the title goes, "Fantastic Worlds of Burroughs and Kline"
is an original title. Many of the fans who read "Burroughs Reader #4" will
recognize it as a springoff of the title "Fantastic Worlds of Edgar Rice
Burroughs". This is not true though. The same day I sent away for copyright
info, I sent away for BR #4. I had registered the copyright before I received
I had also intended for this issue articles on Pellucidar and John Coleman
Burroughs. The former turned out much too long though it may be revised
for a future issue. I have not yet brought to light any new facts on JCB
that have not previously been published, so the article is delayed until
some unknown date.
I was finally able to buy copies of "The James Bond Dossier" and "Double
0 Seven James Bond: A Report". The former is published in England
by Jonathan Cape. The other was published in Great Britain by Neville Spearman
Limited. It is also available from Panther Books in paperback.
The second sentence of the first paragraph of the second column of page
three should read, "Unlike Tarzan, Bond is not fearless, though his bravery
is far above average." I suppose there are other mistakes that I have not
come across. In 1964, Tarzan was celebrating is fifty-second anniversary
since he was created. In the article "James Bond vs. Tarzan" I have taken
the year 1914, the year Tarzan first appeared in hardcover, as the first
year of Tarzan's large scale success.
If you have any of the material requested on Page 4 to sell to me, please
send me a list and include conditions and price expected.
Gold Key's Tarzan of the Apes #153 has been out about two weeks now.
The next issue, #154, should be illustrated by Russ Manning. This will
be a much welcomed change, even more welcomed when Gold Key puts the books
in comic version. It will certainly increase Tarzan comic sales.
If you are not already a member of the Burroughs Bibliophiles, I suggest
you send a money order for $2.00 to Mrs. Coriell. Receiving the BB publications
is one of the greatest joys a Burroughs fan could have. While you're
at it send $2.00 to Caz for ERB-dom, $1.00 to D. Peter Ogden and $1.00
to Dale Broadhurst for the last issue of "The Burroughs Reader and Thuria."
When you send a money order to Dale, perhaps you should increase it and
order the back issues while they are still in stock. You won't be sorry
JAMES BOND vs. TARZAN
by PHILIP J. CURRIE
Tarzan is without
a doubt the most successful literary character of all times. For fifty
long years he ruled supreme with only minor pestilences to threaten his
kingship, emerging without a scratch from Doc Savage, The Shadow, and The
But as Tarzan's fiftieth anniversary as king came around, the foundations
of his palace began to shake, and now Tarzan is embroiled in a battle royal
with the seductive secret agent 007. Will James Bond succeed Tarzan as
literary king? And if he does, will Tarzan be able to fight his way tot
he top again.
Of course James Bond has been around since 1951, but until 1964, with
the release of "Goldfinger," Commander James Bond of Her Majesty's Secret
Service was just a successful spy. But now there are 007 clothes, toiletries,
toys records and magazines besides the original thirteen books by Ian Fleming.
The first two Bond movies, "Dr. No" and "From Russia With Love" were released
for a second time here in Ontario, and played for ten weeks in Toronto.
Those who have read the James Bond adventures might have noticed that
007 and Tarzan are not as different as they appear at a single glance.
Physically, John Clayton and James Bond are matched. Both men are tall,
well proportioned men with handsome, rather stern faces. Each has a distinctive
facial scar. The strength and tolerance of the two is far above normal.
They are both more or less lone wolves who love adventure and fighting.
Like Tarzan, 007 is a decisive Englishman who can speak English, German
Tarzan has gray eyes, and 007 has blue-gray eyes. Unlike Tarzan, Bond
is not fearless, though it is far above average.
Of course many beautiful women are attracted to these demigods, but
unlike Tarzan, 007 takes them as they come. His manner towards them could
be called disrespectful. However, they seem to like it.
But if 007 has bad points with women, he also has his good points. He
saved one girl from dishonour and insanity. This same girl, La Comtesse
Teresa di Vicenzo (Tracy) later became 007's wife. Although Jane's life
had been threatened many times by enemies of her husband, Tarzan was always
able to save her. Not so James Bond. Only hours after the marriage, Tracy
was shot down in cold blood.
Where Tarzan is not as patriotic as he should be, 007 is a patriot of
the highest degree. His country is more important to him than his life
an d loves. This makes him as cruel at times as the jungle bred Tarzan
We are all familiar to Tarzan's reversion back to the primitive in a
fight. But how many know Bond reverted back once? Well he did in "Dr. No"
(book form only) when he came to the end of human reactions to pain and
drew back his lips to snarl.
Of all the Tarzan books, "The Return of Tarzan" is the closest book
to the James Bond Series. Here Tarzan gets a taste of the life of a secret
agent. "Dr. No" is probably the 007 adventure closest to Tarzan. Even Fleming's
style in his fifth 007 book is more like Burroughs than his own.
Most of the differences between Bond and Tarzan can be summed up in
one line. James Bond is only human, while Tarzan is more than human.
There have b een 14 actors playing Tarzan in the movies, while there
has only been one actor for James Bond -- Sean Connery. Connery, the perfect
actor for Bond, is one of the highest paid actors today. The producers
hope to have only one player for Bond, but unless Connery lives forever
or they plan to only produce so many movies, they will have to sign up
Also the James Bond movies and books are almost the same. Humour, known
as Bondism has been added to the movies. SPECTRE (Special Executive for
Counterintelligence, Terrorism, Revenge and Extortion) had replaced SMERSH
(Russian spy and terrorism ring disbanded in 1958 by Khrushchev) in the
movie versions of "Dr. No" and "From Russia With Love". It is also interesting
to note that Connery has brown hair and brown eyes. Apart form adding gadgets
in the movies, they have pretty well followed the text in the making of
the first three movies. "Thunderball" it seems will not follow the book
as well as the previous three. In the book, Bond is involved with only
one girl, Domino. But in the movie, he will be involved with three. We
will see how closely it follows the book when it is released.
The movie Tarzan, on the other hand is beginning to look more like the
Tarzan Edgar Rice Burroughs created. The "Me Tarzan. You Jane" has been
dropped (and unfortunately so has the ape call), and Tarzan will spend
more time in civilization, talking civilized. And now, they are trying
to sell the public that Tarzan is like 007. I believe this is a mistake.
If anything Bond is an amateur Tarzan -- above average, but below Tarzan.
But as long as they don't put a gun in one of Tarzan's hands, and a girl
in the other, it doesn't matter.
As for the appeal of Bond and Tarzan it is hard to say what causes it.
For Bond, the movies with their gadgets, action and beautiful women more
or less started the Bond Fad. The music for "Goldfinger" is probably some
of the best suited music in the history of film. But perhaps the greatest
appeal comes from inner desires, which I believe are in every red-blooded
man (or woman), to be a super-civilized Bond or a primitive and free Tarzan
roaring out his defiance to the world. Of course females would rather be
carried off by Bond or Tarzan than be one.
A huge box-office battle will be fought this Christmas. "Thunderball"
and "Tarzan '66" will be released simultaneously! How's that for a Christmas
present? Both are promising, and if Tarzan gets as much advertising as
Bond is, the box-office will be booming.
I am interested in buying magazines, articles, newspaper clippings,
and books (first editions in hard or paper binding and other rare editions)
by or about ERB, OAK or Ian Fleming and their creations. I am also interested
in any thing rare (such as artwork in foreign mags, preferably with article
or story) dealing with these three authors. It seems ERB Inc., in a recent
court case (it seems every company trying to get rich is putting out Tarzan
movies, books and comics that are not authorized), finally managed to win
over Gold Star Books before the last Barton Werper book was on the market
long. From a collector's view, I wish to buy it.
THE JAMES BOND THRILLERS
by Philip J. Currie
I have included below a list of thirteen Bond Books by Ian Fleming.
They can be bought in paperback form in Canada, Britain, and United States
at paperback racks, and can also be bought in hardcover form from England
and America. Although I do not enjoy the James Bond thrillers as much as
I do Tarzan, I never-the-less found them delightfully entertaining and
well worth reading again and again.
LIVE AND LET DIE
DIAMONDS ARE FOREVER
FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE
FOR YOUR EYES ONLY (5 short stories)
FROM A VIEW TO A KILL
FOR YOUR EYES ONLY
QUANTUM OF SOLACE
THE HILDEBRAND RARITY
THE SPY WHO LOVED ME
ON HER MAJESTY'S SECRET SERVICE
YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE
THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN GUN
I have also included below a list of the two books about James Bond.
The first is published in Canada by Clarke-Irwin and in America by THE
NEW AMERICAN LIBRARY. I presume it is also published in Britain, since
the author is British. The second is published by the New American Library.
THE JAMES BOND DOSSIER by KINGSLEY AMIS
007 JAMES BOND: A REPORT by O.F. SNELLING
E.R.B. and Canada
by John F. Roy
Edgar Rice Burroughs wrote of many countries and several worlds, ranging
from the mythical Kingdom of Lutha in southeast Europe to far off Poloda
in the star-system of Omos. At the same time his numerous Earth-born characters
were representative of almost every nation on the face of the globe – Abyssinians,
Belgians, Chinese, and on down the alphabet.
Just what part did Canada and Canadians play in the tales of this master
story-teller? To answer the second part first, there are only three Canadians
thus honoured, and they by their works alone. The first is Henry Herbert
Knibbs, for his poem “Out There Somewhere” which was used as a basis
for Part II of the The Mucker and for brief selections scattered
throughout the The Oakdale Affair. Quotations from the works of
W. Service also appear in these two books, thanks to Bridge and his
fondness of this style of verse. The name Mary Pickford, Toronto-born
star of the silver screen, will be found in The Girl From Hollywood.
As for Canada herself, there is a strong possibility that John Carter
roamed southern Saskatchewan and Manitoba, as in A Princess
of Mars he says he spent several years among the Sioux of the north.
In the early days of American history these Indians ranged through what
is now Minnesota, the Dakotas and the Prairie Provinces. As far
as we know, Tarzan did not visit Canada, never getting nearer than the
northern part of Wisconsin (Tarzan of the Apes). However, in Tarzan
the Magnificent (Chapter 19) mention is made of Medicine Hat (Alberta),
in Tarzan and the “Foreign Legion” (Chapter 5) reference is made
of Halifax (Nova Scotia), while in Tarzan and the Madman
(Chapter 15) the unfortunate Pelham Dutton said he had done a lot of mountain
climbing in northeast Canada.
In The Mucker, Bridge mentions having been “on the Yukon”
(River). While this could have been somewhere in Alaska, it also is
quite possible that he was in the Canadian Yukon as well, for the
river flows through both areas. In the opening remarks of The War Chief
we are told that Apaches from Northwest Canada migrated to Arizona
and New Mexico centuries ago. Thus it was that Canada had a direct, though
remote, hand in the raising of young Andy MacDuff, or Shoz-Dijiji as his
foster-folk called him. In
Beyond Thirty (Chapter 11) Jefferson
Turck, commander of the ill-fated aero-submarine ‘Coldwater’ tried to make
the port of St. John’s (Newfoundland) when his ship generators broke
down well over the Atlantic. Canada, by that time known as the Federated
States of Canada, was part of the relatively new Pan American Federation.
In Chapter 2 of Pellucidar we read, “gaunt, lean wolves – huge
creatures twice the size of our Canadian timber-wolves.” (Our thanks
to John Harwood for this paragraph). The most important reference to Canada,
however, will be found in The Moon Maid. In the prologue the narrator
is on an aircraft enroute from Chicago to Paris. This in all likelihood,
would take him over Eastern Canada. But in the little known prologue
to Part II (see The Moon Men, Ace Edition) we are told that Burroughs
himself went out hunting for polar bears on that portion of the Canadian
mainland in the vicinity of Herschel Island. With him were three
(presumably Canadian) Eskimos. Burroughs became separated from his
party and was attacked by the very bear he was hunting. He, in turn, was
rescued by the crew of the International Peace Cruiser.
On board the cruiser was Julian 3rd, Admiral of the Fleet, who was ranging
over the Canadian Northland in an effort to locate Burroughs at
the request of his president. It is to be presumed that the entire tale
of Julian 9th was related high in the air over Canada while the ship was
returning from Herschel island to Washington.Thus it is that Canada and
Canadians play a part — however small — in the works of Edgar Rice Burroughs.
ADELBERT KLINE IN MEMORIAM
by E. Hoffman Price
Mid-summer of 1926, I went to Chicago to meet Farnsworth Wright, who with
"Weird Tales" had but recently moved from Indianapolis, Indiana. The encounter
is described in number 2 of the late W. Paul Cook's "The Ghost", which
contains chapter one, of my series, "The Book of the Dead." This is relevant
only because Wright presently phoned Kline saying, "Come down as soon as
you can. E. Hoffman Price is here."
Tall, thin Wright towered over us all, reducing us in scale so that
all other's heights seemed much alike, yet my recollection is that Kline
was appreciably above my five foot seven plus a fraction. Though seven
years and two days my senior -- he was born July 1, 1891 -- and already
showing signs of putting on weight, Otis and I had as to appearance, more
likeness than difference -- dark hair, ruddy-olive complexion, full fashioned
nose. ONe detail has escaped my memory: whether his eyes were blue-gray
or brown. His expression was open-faced, self assured, hearty and cordial:
a man who knew his way around, meeting life and the world with confidence
and loving both.
Characteristically, Otis invited us to dinner. Little time was lost
in closing the editorial rooms at 450 East Ohio Street.
He took us in his Willys-knight sedan to his home at 4333 Castello Avenue,
which in those days was well away from Chicago's nightmarish downtown confusion.
The front was deceptively self effacing and modest. Crossing the threshold
was a dramatic step.
First "Curley" --Mrs. Kline, smooth and lovely and soft-voiced and gracious,
her youthful face seeming ever younger because of that exquisite silver-pearl,
prematurely gray hair; "Jimmie" -- Ora Fay, the tiny dainty blond daughter;
Elinor, the more robust brunette, and "Buster" -- Allen the son, colored
very much like his father.
There was the dining room and that long, long table I was to know so
well, during the couple of years Otis and I were neighbours. And then,
on the second floor, and overlooking the street, was the land of wonder;
the first studio I'd ever entered. A glance at the titles of his library
made me drool. By now, I knew that meeting this man was a significant event.
Prohibition, remember? That queer, warped and vicious expression of
the American passion for minding other peoples' business, reforming other
people, supervising their lives? Otis had not got around to taking cognizance
of that lunatic law. Mrs. Kline came up the stairs to bring into the studio
a tray on which was not a bottle, but numerous bottles. Otis gestured
in that lavish, lordly way the very memory of which has brightened the
thirty-two years which have marched past since our first meeting.
Every free man in those days had liquor, if only to show contempt of
the fanatics who had enslaved the land -- but Otis had GOOD liquor. As
good, in fact, as the dinner, which like all of Mrs. Kline's kitchen magic,
How we managed without block and tackle to quit the dining table and
get back to the studio is no longer clear, but we did. Turkish and Domestic
Cigarettes; cigars, and an assortment of new pipes, and an assortment of
blends of tobacco. When I had finished my first pipe, Otis took it and
carved my initials on the bowl and set it in the rack with the other guest-pipes,
to await my return.
Meanwhile, Mrs. Kline came up with liqueurs -- Benedictine, Chartreux,
Cacao and all the rest of the customary as well as the unusual things on
the list. The Otis touch, the thinking in terms of A LA CARTE.
In due course, Farnsworth Wright and the business manager of "Weird
Tales," Bill Sprenger, bailed out. I didn't. Otis made it clear that we
still had much to discuss. Which we had. Moslem customs, the Arabic Language,
the art and science of the sword.
Midnight . . . "Time for a bottle and a cold joint," he remarked.
Whether she had been previously briefed, or was merely psychic was never
clarified, but he had barely spoken when "Curley" came up the stairs with
two bottles, a haunch of mutton and a leg of veal. And, genuine Mocha Coffee.
He was in the spice and extract business and thus knew the source of things.
We hewed cold joints and dipped our beaks into the 16-year of Zinfandel
which he had made, and had aged in the cellar. Once red, the wine had from
age become tawny brown and wonderful. The other bottle contained a younger
wine, still red.
Then the swords . . . He had heard that I had been the lesser member
of the Westpoint dueling sword team which won the inter-collegiate championship
in 1923. "No EPEES," he said, cheerily, "But maybe these sabres will do."
One had to humour such a perfect host.
"En Garde!" Right there in the crowded study.
I'm glad that the old master, Cercle de L'Escrime de la Madeleine (Louis
Vauthier) wasn't there to see my performance. That man of iron would out
of his generous heart forgiven me, but the sight would have hurt his feelings.
A MASTER of the sword would have made an ape of Otis. But Otis made a monkey
The collegiate fencers being well schooled, were predictable because
their moves were conventional. Otis was unschooled, unpredictable , agile,
aggressive, self assured. And swordplay , without a mask or glove and in
a crowded room, disconcerted me. All this, I later learned, came out of
his planning "The Swordsman of Mars" -- he wanted a bit of a workout, and
then, some atmosphere! Happily I did have sufficient presence of mind to
compare the sabre with the TULWAR and the SCIMITAR, weapons which Otis
did not have at hand. It was very much more comfortable getting things
back on an academic basis.
Presently, Otis went to the basement for more wine. We drank and we
drank, until the rising sun reached into the study-library-armory. Then
he drove me to the South Shore Station, and the interurban train which
took me twenty miles to Hammond, Indiana, and the job that financed my
playing at being a writer.
During our two years as neighbours, we had many such meetings. When
I was transferred to New Orleans, Otis joined me and Robert Spencer Carr
and others of the VIEUX CARRE crowd for a week of festivity which did not
noticeably interfere with the primary purpose of his trip -- calling on
customers, the principal one being a certain Mr. Brown, an ice-cream magnate
who lived in a palace at Rosa Court, just off Upper St. Charles Avenue.
In business as in hospitality, Otis was large scale, somewhat bigger than
Finally, as is the way with business partnerships, there were differences.
Otis sold out his interest and devoted his full time to fiction. His output
was no more than two or three serials (or equivalent lengths in hard cover
format) annually, with of course shorter pieces. That I am in mid-1958
asked to write of a man whose fiction career ended in 1933 suggests that
during his day as an author, he made a deep impression. Let me give an
Farnsworth Wright, telling me of one of the many crises which had promised
to finish "Weird Tales," said that but for the drawing power of several
of the steady contributors, the magazine would never have pulled through.
He did not give any one of this handful preeminence over the others, knowing
how silly such discrimination would have been.
In effect, he said, "This one was not producing at the time, and that
one hadn't quite arrived. But Otis had reached a new peak of popularity.
We'd been through previous bad stretches, and knew just how long a circulation
slump would last. A six-parter would do it, and Otis gave me a synopsis,
then set to work."
"Ordinarily, I will not feature a serial until the entire manuscript
is in my hands," Wright continued, "but this was an emergency. So, I published
several parts before the final installments were done. Pneumonia almost
did it! For Otis, and for us!"
"The devil you say!"
Wright nodded. "You never heard? He never mentioned it?
"This is all new."
"In hospital, Otis finished that yarn. How he did it, no one knows,
least of all he himself. He was like a zombie, functioning automatically.
He lived through it and so did "Weird Tales"."
"It's a wonder they let him do it."
"They had nothing to say about it. Something drove Otis. He would not
be stopped, and he was not stopped."
My best recollection is that the story was the serial "The Bride of
Osiris." (Peter Ogden took the time to check this with an index of Kline's
works and discovered that "Tam, Son of Tiger" and "Buccaneers of Venus"
were the only six part serials featured in "Weird Tales." He believes "Buccaneers
of Venus" was not turned down by Argosy in preference of "Pirates of Venus,"
but, unlike his other Venus novels, appeared in "Weird Tales" because of
the circulation slump. Though, as D. Peter Ogden has noted, it might have
been "Tam, Son of Tiger." OAK finished in hospital . . . PJC)
Otis coached me as to market requirements and proved his points by selling
the manuscript I had rewritten in response to his suggestions. He had so
many editorial contacts that he could not satisfy the demand for his own
work. It was easy and natural for him to offer stories by friends whose
style and treatment he liked. Finally, since he could not produce a quantity
of fiction sufficient to maintain his family in the way to which he had
become accustomed, he turned from writing and began to major as authors
representative. Unlike so many who loved to write, Otis was realistic.
And, he was a superb salesman!
Despite my having sold "Weird Tales," "Oriental Stories," and "Magic
Carpet" a total of twenty yarns, during my amateur years, as professional
writer, in mid-1932, established two unpleasant facts. The first was that
my fantasy sales had given me not even a dime's worth of prestige in the
general pulp field. Second, I had to get acquainted wit the long list of
requirements as to treatment, pace length and tabus. This was sharply in
contrast to dealing with Farsworth Wright, whose editorial policy was,
"I have no editorial policy."
In the spring of 1933, it seemed that I had arrived as a fictioneer:
three novelettes and two shorts sold in one week. This false dawn was followed
by the darkness of a bad slump. Nosing my Model "A" Ford northward that
autumn, I drove the thousand miles from New Orleans to Chicago, somewhat
to humour my second wife, Wanda, and somewhat to confer with Otis. While
she was visiting her friends and no doubt trying to decide what to do when
our fiction business folded. I was Kline's guest for three weeks.
We discussed several collaborations. We teamed up and wrote an installment
of a fantasy serial to which several others were to contribute, each author,
one chapter. This was for an amateur publication. We called on several
of the few editors who had not yet moved their offices to New York, the
Fiction Capital. Each of these contacts finally paid off. Otis never doubted
that I'd make the grade. Looking back, I marvel more now than I did then
at his optimism. The years have made me appreciate, more and more his generous
friendship, his fine hospitality and his gracious wife.
In 1933 was World's Fair in Chicago, "Century of Progress." Otis,
having made the rounds of the exhibits relating to the Near East, took
me for a tour of that portion of the fair. It is my impression, blurred
and vague, that he either had, or was going to have one of his stories
used as the basis for a concession that featured the prehistoric world
and primitive man. Though ever more deeply involved as a literary agent,
he still assembled material against the day when he could afford the time
to write fiction again.
Another discovery was Hassan's place far down town, the social centre
of a colony of Syrians, Egyptians, Hindu Moslems, Arabs from El Yemen;
Turks and Persians and Armenians gathered there.
Otis hailed each acquaintance in an appropriate Arabic dialect, from
Syrian to Mghrebi. Wit one group we had coffee. With another, we smoked
a Narghileh, while Otis tried to get the words of a Turkish song, and to
make musical notations. Then, as a gourmet, he got a recipe:
"Crush several cloves of garlic," Hassan said, "and fill the bowl with
yogurt. Add some Tahini (crushed sesame seed), a dash of red pepper, and
whip it 'till it's like this. . ." We liked the sample. The man went on,
"But don't eat it unless you can spend the next couple of days in the country.
Your friends won't like you."
After a quarter of a century, I still recall Otis, ruddy, glowing with
good friendship and the joy of living; gesturing as he changed a stanza
or two of that Turkis ballad. Only the chorus remains with me: "Yok, Babajeem,
And in another corner of Hassan's smoky loft, we sat in on a dissertation
on Moslem theology. Otis was a scholar as well as a BON VIVANT.
Depression or no, those were the days, and rich. I drove back to New
Orleans for a fresh start. I did not know that never again would Otis and
I drink to the sunrise, or see each other face to face.
Early 1934, Wanda and I headed for the Pacific Coast. The final lap
of the long trek was financed by one of those checks which Otis managed
to collect from the receiver of a publisher who had gone through bankruptcy.
This was not notable, except for one curious detail: The story had been
sold for $100, payable on publication. The check Otis got was for $125!
Whether a fluke, or a result of skillfully pressuring the receiver, I never
learned. The writing business began to pay off.
Otis sent me synopses, characterization sketches and "treatments" of
several yarns he had long hoped to complete. One was a serial, "Satans
on Saturn," published in Argosy. Several were novelettes for the detective
For me, collaboration is usually a losing deal. Working with Otis was
one of the few exceptions. Out of appreciation of his good fellowship,
I would happily have collaborated at a financial loss and still counted
it a genuine gain, since those joint efforts enabled him to get into print
in spite of the ever increasing demands of his literary agency. But the
way things worked out, the foundation material which he supplied was so
stimulating that I was able to grind out the finished copy at such a speed
that splitting the check still left me with a good profit.
In addition to domestic marketing, Otis, always a good promoter, became
a specialist in foreign rights.
The final step was moving from Chicago to South Beach, Connecticut,
and opening an office in New York. Eventually, he sold the home I remembered
so fondly. When I got the news, I had a feeling of sadness somewhat like
that at the death of a friend. I wrote condolences, as it were, on the
passing of 4333 Castello Avenue.
In 1944-45, Otis and I exchanged a good many letters regarding a proposed
collaboration. His idea and plan of course. This was to be a story of central
Asia and Tibet, a blend of science and the outright supernatural, in which
Siva the Destroyer would appear, either off stage, or actually on the scene.
"Broken Wheel" was the working title. We had never attempted a project
quite as difficult.
Time and again, the deal was tabled. However, this seemingly impossible
project was so intriguing that we brushed aside a proposed adventure novelette
of the Caribbean area, a story that could readily have been completed and
Otis was leading his usual busy, high pressure life. The years since
1926 had been adding up; we lived zestfully s ever, but without the magnificent
extremes of the old days. Because of a heart condition, there were diets
and various restrictions. Meanwhile, he was "arriving" -- and where competitors
had at first soothed themselves by damning with faint praise, and by polite
disparagements they ended by forgetting business rivalry, and recognizing
him as a good operator, accepting him as a good friend and valued associate.
His family was growing up. "Jimmie" was married, and starting a family
of her own. There were snapshots from time time, of him, and of the youngsters,
now as old as I had been when Otis and I first met. Life in the new home
And we'd finally get "Broken Wheel" turning smoothly.
But just what Otis and I could finally have devised concerning the greater
and lesser gods was not to be decided. There came an airmail, telling me
that Otis had died October 24, 1946. A heart attack finished him very swiftly,
or was it a cerebral hemorrhage? All I know certainly is that death had
taken a loyal and generous friend.
. . . I might write a page regarding my visit, June 1963, to Short
Beach, Conn., where O.A.K. spent the final days of his life. I had a long
talk with Mrs. Kline and her daughter, Ora Fay Rossini, and met for the
first time the red-headed granddaughter, a lovely young lady. From the
emotional standpoint, this was truly "time-travel." A happy-sad afternoon.
Took quite a few pictures. Looked over the waters which O.A.K. had loved
during his fishing days. Into these waters his ashes were poured come October
1946. And I learned diverse details of his final years and various details
of his personality, never revealed to me during the 20 years of our comradeship.
Thus it was that I experienced both Kline's resurrection for a little while
and also his death for the second time.
I have included below a list of Kline's books and stories as they were
titled, dated and serialized in their first magazine appearances. Of course,
many were reprinted at least once and many have seen book publication,
but there is obviously not enough space here to list all printings, even
if I did know them all. J. Allen St. John and C.C. Senf did the majority
of the magazine artwork for the tales published in Argosy and Weird Tales.