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Joe Gores

Joe Gores

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Joe Gores was an American mystery
Mystery fiction
Mystery fiction is a loosely-defined term.1.It is often used as a synonym for detective fiction or crime fiction— in other words a novel or short story in which a detective investigates and solves a crime mystery. Sometimes mystery books are nonfiction...

 writer. He was known best for his novels and short stories set in San Francisco and featuring the fictional "Dan Kearney and Associates" (the "DKA Files") private investigation firm specializing in repossessing cars, a thinly veiled escalation of his own experiences as a confidential sleuth and repo man. Gores was also recognized for his novels Hammett (1975; made into the 1982 film Hammett), Spade & Archer (the 2009 prequel to Dashiell Hammett
Dashiell Hammett
Samuel Dashiell Hammett was an American author of hard-boiled detective novels and short stories, and political activist. Among the enduring characters he created are Sam Spade , Nick and Nora Charles , and the Continental Op .In addition to the significant influence his novels and stories had on...

's The Maltese Falcon) and his Edgar Award
Edgar Award
The Edgar Allan Poe Awards , named after Edgar Allan Poe, are presented every year by the Mystery Writers of America...

-winning or -nominated works, such as A Time of Predators, 32 Cadillacs and Come Morning.

Work


Gores was a three-time Edgar Award
Edgar Award
The Edgar Allan Poe Awards , named after Edgar Allan Poe, are presented every year by the Mystery Writers of America...

 winner, and only one of three authors (the other two being Donald E. Westlake
Donald E. Westlake
Donald Edwin Westlake was an American writer, with over a hundred novels and non-fiction books to his credit. He specialized in crime fiction, especially comic capers, with an occasional foray into science fiction or other genres...

 and William L. DeAndrea
William L. DeAndrea
William L. DeAndrea was an American mystery writer and columnist. He won three Edgar Awards from the Mystery Writers of America, the first for his first novel, Killed in the Ratings. The majority of his novels made up several series. The Matt Cobb mysteries drew on DeAndrea's experience working...

) to receive Edgars in three separate categories; Gores won Best First Novel (for A Time of Predators (1969)—a story set in the San Francisco Bay Area and having to do with a Stanford University
Stanford University
The Leland Stanford Junior University, commonly referred to as Stanford University or Stanford, is a private research university on an campus located near Palo Alto, California. It is situated in the northwestern Santa Clara Valley on the San Francisco Peninsula, approximately northwest of San...

 professor who re-learns his military commando skills in order to go after a gang of juvenile thugs who raped his wife), Best Short Story ("Goodbye, Pops," Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine, Dec. 1969) and Best TV Series Segment (for writing an episode of the crime drama Kojak
Kojak
Kojak is an American television series starring Telly Savalas as the title character, bald New York City Police Department Detective Lieutenant Theo Kojak. It aired from October 24, 1973, to March 18, 1978, on CBS. It took the time slot of the popular Cannon series, which was moved one hour earlier...

 titled "No Immunity for Murder"—airdate Nov. 23, 1975). In addition, Gores received the 1986 Maltese Falcon Award (Japan's highest commendation in the mystery fiction field) and the Private Eye Writers of America lifetime achievement award (The Eye), and he was elected president of the Mystery Writers of America
Mystery Writers of America
Mystery Writers of America is an organization for mystery writers, based in New York.The organization was founded in 1945 by Clayton Rawson, Anthony Boucher, Lawrence Treat, and Brett Halliday....

. His novels 32 Cadillacs and Come Morning were nominated for Best Novel Edgars. Gores and Donald E. Westlake wrote a chapter in each of their own respective books—Westlake's Drowned Hopes and Gores' 32 Cadillacs—having their characters being influenced by the same event. Beyond Kojak
Kojak
Kojak is an American television series starring Telly Savalas as the title character, bald New York City Police Department Detective Lieutenant Theo Kojak. It aired from October 24, 1973, to March 18, 1978, on CBS. It took the time slot of the popular Cannon series, which was moved one hour earlier...

, Gores composed teleplays and screenplays for popular mystery-related series such as Remington Steele
Remington Steele
Remington Steele is an American television series, co-created by Robert Butler and Michael Gleason. The series, starring Stephanie Zimbalist and Pierce Brosnan, was produced by MTM Enterprises and first broadcast on the NBC network from 1982 to 1987. The series blended the genres of romantic...

, B.L. Stryker
B.L. Stryker
B.L Stryker is an American detective drama that aired on ABC from February 13, 1989 to May 1990 as part of the ABC Mystery Movie along with Gideon Oliver, Columbo and Kojak. The series was executive produced by Tom Selleck.-Premise:...

, Mrs. Columbo, and Magnum, P.I.
Magnum, P.I.
Magnum, P.I. is an American television series starring Tom Selleck as Thomas Magnum, a private investigator living on Oahu, Hawaii. The series ran from 1980 to 1988 in first-run broadcast on the American CBS television network....

.

Background


Gores lived in the San Francisco Bay Area
San Francisco Bay Area
The San Francisco Bay Area, commonly known as the Bay Area, is a populated region that surrounds the San Francisco and San Pablo estuaries in Northern California. The region encompasses metropolitan areas of San Francisco, Oakland, and San Jose, along with smaller urban and rural areas...

 and was a longtime resident. He obtained a degree in English Literature from Notre Dame University and received a Masters degree, also in English Literature, from Stanford University
Stanford University
The Leland Stanford Junior University, commonly referred to as Stanford University or Stanford, is a private research university on an campus located near Palo Alto, California. It is situated in the northwestern Santa Clara Valley on the San Francisco Peninsula, approximately northwest of San...

 in 1961. Gores worked for 12 years as a real-life private investigator
Private investigator
A private investigator , private detective or inquiry agent, is a person who can be hired by individuals or groups to undertake investigatory law services. Private detectives/investigators often work for attorneys in civil cases. Many work for insurance companies to investigate suspicious claims...

 for San Francisco's David Kikkert & Associates, and put in other stints as a truck driver, logger, assistant motel manager and an English teacher at a boy's school in Kenya
Kenya
Kenya , officially known as the Republic of Kenya, is a country in East Africa that lies on the equator, with the Indian Ocean to its south-east...

. In his novels he used variations of the names of former associates—such as Stan Groner. According to The Thrilling Detective Web Site, "He has often relied on his former occupations, particularly his stint as a private eye, to lend an air of authenticity to his work, blasting through the 'glamour' of detective work, [and] showing the drudgery and grunt work of detection." Gores died in a Marin County, California, hospital 50 years to the day after Dashiell Hammett passed away.

Selected short stories


EQMM = Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine; DKA = stories involving "Dan Kearney and Associates"
  • "Inscrutable" (2001, The Mysterious Press Anniversary Anthology)
  • "Summer Fog" (2001, Flesh and Blood)
  • "Ishmael" (1993, New Mystery)
  • "Sleep the Big Sleep" (April 1991, EQMM; Danny Durant)
  • "Dance of the Dead" (Spring 1991, The Armchair Detective; Neal Fargo)
  • "File #12: Do Not Go Gentle" (March 1989, EQMM; DKA)
  • "Detectivitis, Anyone?" (January 1988, EQMM; aka "Plot It Yourself")
  • "Smart Guys Don't Snore" (1987, A Matter of Crime #2; Bonecrack Krajewski)
  • "File #11: Jump Her Lively, Boys!" (July 1984, EQMM; DKA)
  • "File # 9: Full Moon Madness" (February 1984, EQMM; DKA)
  • "Rope Enough" (1976, Tricks and Treats)
  • "Kirinyga" (March 1975, EQMM)
  • "File #8: The O'Bannon Blarney File" (1973, Men and Malice; DKA)
  • "Raptor" (October 1983, EQMM)
  • "File #10: The Maimed and the Halt" (January 1976, EQMM; DKA)
  • "Watch for It" (1973, Mirror, Mirror, Fatal Mirror)
  • "The War Club" (May 1972, Argosy)
  • "File #7: O Black and Unknown Bard" (April 1972, EQMM; DKA)
  • "File #6: Beyond the Shadow" (January 1972, EQMM; DKA)
  • "You're Putting Me On—Aren't You?" (1971, Adam's Reader, 1971)
  • "Trouble at 81 Fathoms" (June 1971, Argosy)
  • "Force 12" (January 1971, Argosy)
  • "The Andrech Samples" (September 1970, Swank)
  • "The Bear's Paw" (April 1970, Argosy)
  • "The Criminal" (1970, Adam 14, No. 12)
  • "Goodbye, Pops" (December 1969, EQMM; winner of 1970 Edgar Award for Best Short Story)
  • "Quit Screaming" (November 1969, Adam's Reader 41)
  • "Gunman in Town" (October1969, Zane Grey's Western Magazine)
  • "File #5: The Maria Navarro Case" (June 1969, EQMM; aka "Be Nice To Me;" DKA)
  • "South of the Moon" (January 1969, Argosy)
  • "File #4: Lincoln Sedan Deadline" (September 1968, EQMM; DKA)
  • "File #3: The Pedretti Case" (July 1968, EQMM; aka "The Three Halves;" DKA)
  • "The Golden Tiki" (June 1968, Argosy)
  • "Olmurani" (February 1968, Argosy)
  • "File #2: Stakeout on Page Street" (January 1968, EQMM; DKA)
  • "File # 1: The Mayfield Case" (December 1967, EQMM; aka "Find the Girl;" DKA)
  • "Odendahl" (December 1967, Argosy)
  • "The Second Coming" (August 1966, Adam's Best Fiction)
  • "Kanaka" (1966, Adam 10, No. 11)
  • "The Seeker of Ultimates" (November 1965, EQMM)
  • "A Sad and Bloody Hour" (April 1965, EQMM)
  • "My Buddy" (1965)
  • "Sweet Vengeance" (July 1964, Manhunt)
  • "Sweet Vengeance" (July 1964, Manhunt)
  • "The Price of Lust" (April 1963, Manhunt)
  • "Darl I Luv U" (February 1963, EQMM)
  • "Trouble in Papeete" (April 1962, Rake)
  • "The Main Chance" (April 1962, Gent)
  • "Muscle Beach" (March 1962, Rogue)
  • "The Mob" (December 1961, Negro Digest)
  • "Night Out" (October 1961, Manhunt)
  • "Sailor's Girl" (August 1961, Manhunt)
  • "You Aren't Yellow" (January 1960, Mike Shayne's Mystery Magazine)
  • "Down and Out" (June 1959, Manhunt)
  • "Killer Man" (June 1958, Manhunt; aka "Pro")
  • "Chain Gang" (December 1957, Manhunt)

Selected Screenplays

  • B.L. Stryker: "Blind Chess" (Airdate: Mar. 27, 1989)
  • T.J. Hooker: "Death Trip" (Airdate: May 14, 1986)
  • Magnum, P.I.: "A Pretty Good Dancing Chicken" (Airdate Apr. 4, 1985)
  • Remington Steele: "Let's Steele a Plot" (Airdate Dec. 18, 1984)
  • Kate Loves a Mystery (aka Mrs. Columbo): "Love, on Instant Replay" (Airdate: Oct. 18 1979)
  • Kojak: "Case without a File" (Airdate: Dec. 17 1977)
  • Kojak: "Bad Dude" (Airdate: Jan. 25, 1976)
  • Kojak: "No Immunity for Murder" (Airdate: Nov. 23, 1975; Edgar Award winner, Best Episode in a TV Series)

Further reading


External links