Saturday 27 April 2019

L.L. Foreman - Western Author

L.L. Foreman was a frequent contributor to the western pulps from the mid 1930s to the early 1950s. His series character Preacher Devlin started in 1934 and appeared in more than 45 stories till 1949, becoming one of the longer lasting series characters in the western pulps. Coincidentally, Star Western had the Deacon Bottle series by Robert E. Mahaffay running at the same time, from 1934 to 1946, about both of whom l should probably have a later article.

Foreman’s stories revolved around character, dialogue and plot rather than frenetic action, and the setting is usually somewhere in the American Southwest, an area he was familiar with. The harsh landscape and weather in the area sometimes figure as plot elements, but more often as a backdrop for the tough characters that are drawn to such areas. In the 1950s and early 60s, a few movies and television episodes were made from his stories, none of which set the screen on fire.

Leonard "London" Foreman, c. 1945
Leonard "London" Foreman, c. 1945

Saturday 6 April 2019

An interesting issue of Dime Western

I recently got my hands on this issue of Dime Western, at a rather reasonable price too. and was quite happy with that purchase. From the cover, it looks quite ordinary, just like any other issue of Dime Western from the period. After 9 more issues, the magazine would stop publication.

There are actually two points of interest about this particular issue, though. The first, and more well known is that this is the issue in which Elmore Leonard's story, 3:10 to Yuma, first appeared in print. The story is quite short (around 4,500 words).

Illustration for 3:10 to Yuma, by Elmore Leonard - Dime Western, March 1953
Illustration for 3:10 to Yuma, by Elmore Leonard - Dime Western, March 1953

Elmore Leonard had this to say about his story:

And you can read the story itself here, courtesy the Library of America, which collects 8 of his western stories in this hardcover collection (disable ad-blocker to see links):

Or you can pickup this paperback with all of his westerns:

Anyway, the other interesting point about this issue, to me at least, is the cover. When i saw it, I was reminded of another cover, and i went looking for it. Here it is, changed from the Star Western May 1939 issue

Star Western May 1939 and Dime Western March 1953
Star Western May 1939 and Dime Western March 1953
I wonder if the original artist was asked to make the changes.