Patrick Swenson began Talebones magazine in 1995, and in 2000 started Fairwood Press, a small SF book press. Ultra Thin Man is his first novel.

The Marriage of Sci-Fi and Noir

by Patrick Swenson

My novel The Ultra Thin Man has readers likening it to Dashiell Hammett’s The Thin Man, and in truth, Hammett’s novel is a definite influence, as is the film of the same name. I’ve also seen a number of comments along the lines of: “I hope Nick and Nora at least have a cameo!” They do not, I’m afraid. In fact, only one character makes a cameo, and it was quite by accident. Dorothy, the daughter of the prime suspect in The Thin Man, is often called by a shorter name. In the first chapter of The Ultra Thin Man, I introduce “Dorie,” a supposed terrorist movement sympathizer. The spelling of her name is different, however. I’d forgotten about her name in Hammett’s book until a year after I finished writing my own. I reread Hammett’s novel after that, and then I remembered.
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In episode 204 of the SF Signal Podcast, Patrick Hester sneaks into an unused programming room to chat with the editor, publisher, and several contributing authors of the Beyond the Sun anthology, out from Fairwood Press.
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