Among other duties incumbent upon an American Fiction Guild president was the enlistment of speakers for the Friday night gatherings in the lounge of the Hotel Knickerbocker.
In addition to this Commissioner Valentine, the Guild had previously hosted the New York City coroner (who discussed death from strangulation), and a Marquis de la Falcis de la Coudrey recently returned from a photo safari across Indochina tiger country. The point being: apart from Arthur Burks (a former Marine from the Nicaraguan bush), Dashiell Hammett (a former Pinkerton detective) and the famously adventuring
L. Ron Hubbardshimself, few members of that guild actually knew of what they wrote.
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