Wednesday, July 21, 2021

The Late Great William F. Nolan

Writer William F. Nolan, best known for co-writing the novel Logan's Run with George Clayton Johnson and a wide variety of other works, died on July 15 2021 at the age of 93.

William F. Nolan was born on March 6 1928 in Kansas City, Missouri. As a child, he was an avid reader of comic books, pulp magazines, and books, and he loved movies. He attended the Kansas City Art Institute and worked for Hallmark Cards for a time. Not long after World War II, his family moved to Chula Vista, California. It was after he had been in Los Angeles for a time that he discovered the works of Ray Bradbury. He sought Mr. Bradbury out and befriended him. Their friendship eventually led Mr. Nolan to put out his first book, The Ray Bradbury Review. William F. Nolan was an artist for a time before going into writing. He made his first sale of a short story, "The Darendinger Build-Up," to Playboy. It appeared in the June 1956 issue of the magazine. His short stories would be published in a variety of magazines and anthology books.

William F. Nolan's first novel was Logan's Run, co-written with this friend George Clayton Johnson. Published in 1967, the novel was loosely adapted as the movie Logan's Run (1977).  It was followed by two sequel novels (Logan's World and Logan's Search), the novella Logan's Return, and two unpublished sequels. He also wrote four hard-boiled detective novels centred on private eye Bart Challis. His Sam Space series combined the science fiction and hard-boiled detective novel. Mr. Nolan also wrote a series centred on paranormal investigator Kincaid. His series of "Black Mask Boys" mysteries featured Dashiell Hammett, Raymond Chandler, and Erle Stanley Gardner.

William F. Nolan also wrote a number of books on Ray Bradbury, Max Brand, and Dashiell Hammett, as well as biographies on Barney Oldfield, Phil Hill, John Huston, Steve McQueen, and Ernest Hemingway.>br />
William F. Nolan also worked in television. He wrote episodes of the shows Wanted Dead or Alive, Norman Corwin Presents, Darkroom, and 240-Robert. He wrote the TV movies The Norliss Tapes, Melvin Purvis G--MAN, The Turn of the Screw, Sky Heist, The Kansas City Massacre, and Bridge Across Time. He also wrote the teleplays for two of the three stories featured in the classic TV movie Trilogy of Terror, based on the works of Richard Matheson. With regards to feature films, he wrote the screenplay for Burnt Offerings (1976).

William F. Nolan was certainly a remarkable writer. Logan's Run has certainly made an impact on popular culture. That having been said, he wrote many other works and was nothing if not prolific. His works spanned everything from science fiction to horror to hard-boiled detective fiction to non-fiction. He certainly made lasting contributions to literature.

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