As my book, Doc Wilde and The Frogs of Doom, gets closer and closer to a public existence, I think this Thanksgiving is a prime time to give thanks to those who inspired me and those who have helped make the book a reality.
So here is the acknowledgments page, fresh from the book:
Writing this book has been the literary equivalent of cooking a batch of Stone Soup; I brought some rocks, but the meat and veggies and spice came from many sources.
For inspiration, I affectionately acknowledge the spinners of countless adventure stories I’ve enjoyed since I was a kid, folks like Robert E. Howard, Fritz Leiber, Alexandre Dumas, Paul Dini, Karl Edward Wagner, Rafael Sabatini, Walter Gibson, Ray Harryhausen, Neil Gaiman, Joss Whedon, Norvell Page, Michael Chabon, and Robert B. Parker.
I owe a special debt to two writers from the pulp magazines of old, Lester Dent who, under the nom de plume “Kenneth Robeson,” brought the world the extravagant adventures of Doc Savage, the original superhero, and H.P. Lovecraft whose spooky stories warned of eldritch horrors lurking just outside our world waiting to devour it. Lovecraft’s work is always readily available, and as I write this, all the Doc Savage stories are finally being reprinted in beautiful editions by Anthony Tollin and Nostalgia Ventures (www.shadowsanctum.com).
For encouragement over the years, I’d like to thank the enchanting Carmen Agra Deedy, the sensational Shane Black, and especially my noble friend Ed Hall, who never falters.
Thanks to my wonderful agent, Laura Rennert, who daily dares the frightening jungles of publishing with greater fortitude than I’ll ever know.
A very big thank you to my editor Timothy Travaligni (and his right hand, Shauna Fay) for teaching me to use the scalpel and ignore the pain. Thank you for your patience; I’m a blockhead sometimes, and it can take me a while to realize when I’m wrong. This book is a much shinier diamond than it would have been without your help.
A very special thanks to comic book virtuoso Gary Chaloner, the first true friend of the Wildes. Gaz, you’ll always be welcome on our adventures as far as I’m concerned.
And the biggest thank you of all goes to my son, Nathaniel Byrd, who made me want to tell this tale in the first place.