Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Robert S. Levinson: R.I.P.

More sad news for the mystery community. LA Times bestselling author Robert S. Levinson had passed away March 13 after a battle with pneumonia. He will be missed.

I met Bob several times at Bcons and Left Coast Crimes, and we emailed about awards and books. Over the years he contributed several articles to Mystery Readers Journal on music and art and mysteries. I will miss him and his wit and humor.

From his website:

Robert S. Levinson was the bestselling author of the stand-alone novels “The Evil Deeds We Do,” "Finders, Keepers, Losers, Weepers," "Phony Tinsel," "A Rhumba in Waltz Time," "The Traitor in Us All," "In the Key of Death," "Where the Lies Begin" and "Ask a Dead Man," as well as the Neil Gulliver and Stevie Marriner series of mystery-thrillers, which to date comprises "The Elvis and Marilyn Affair," "The James Dean Affair, "The John Lennon Affair," "The Andy Warhol Affair (Hot Paint)," and now “The Stardom Affair.” 

He won the Short Mystery Fiction Society's Best Short Story Derringer Award for "The Quick Brown Fox," a short that originally appeared in Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine. The short is also featured in the anthology, "Between the Dark and the Daylight and 28 More of the Year's Finest Crime and Mystery Stories. An original short, "Down in Capistrano," appears in "Orange County Noir," and another, "The Night of the Murder," in the anthology "Crime Square." Another original, "The Dead Detective," appears in "The Sound and the Furry: Stories to benefit the International Fund for Animal Welfare," as well as the “Coast to Coast” short story collection. 

Levinson, a Shamus award nominee, was an Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine Readers Award winner three consecutive years. To date, his short stories have been selected for inclusion in "year's best" anthologies eight consecutive years, including the cover title piece (from Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine) in "A Prisoner of Memory and 24 of the Year’s Finest Crime and Mystery Stories." 

Another original short, "And the Winner is…" is included in "Hollywood and Crime: Original Crime Stories Set During the History of Hollywood." Earlier Levinson short stories appear in "The Deadly Bride and 21 of the Year's Finest Crime and Mystery Stories; "The Adventure of the Missing Detective and 19 of the Year's Finest Crime and Mystery Stories;" the 5th annual "World's Finest Crime & Mystery" anthology; and "Flesh & Blood: Guilty as Sin."

Plays by Levinson were featured at the inaugural and second annual International Mystery Writers Festival of RiverPark Center in Owensboro, KY. The first, "Transcript," was presented out-of-competition and subsequently developed by RiverPark in radio show format for international distribution. "Murder Times Two" was nominated for "Angie" award honors and published in the On Stage Press/Samuel French anthology, "Scripts." 

Levinson served four years on the Mystery Writers of America national board of directors, as well as two years as president of MWA's Southern California chapter. He wrote and produced two Annual Edgar Awards galas of the MWA and the inaugural and 2nd Annual Thriller Awards shows of the International Thriller Writers organization. In addition to MWA, ITW, Sisters-in-Crime, Private Eye Writers of America and the International Association of Crime Writers, Levinson is a member of the Writers Guild of America-West (past board of directors member) and the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. He is past chairperson f the editorial board of the WGAw's monthly magazine, Written By, and served six terms as president of the Hollywood Press Club, which years later voted "The Elvis and Marilyn Affair" Best Novel About Hollywood in its annual HPC Awards of Distinction.

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