Harry Whittington was one of the most prolific writers in the history of fiction. From 1946 to 1984 he produced over 150 novels. At his peak he was, for twenty years (in the 50s and 60s), writing on average about seven novels a year. In today’s era, where novelists, aided by computers, struggle to compete one book a year, Whittington’s achievement was truly superhuman, never to be surpassed, the literary equivalent of DiMaggio’s 52-game hitting streak.
One of the true work-horse writers of the pulp era, Whittington wrote in multiple genres and published additional books under such pseudonyms as Whit Harrison, Ashley Carter, Blaine Stevens, Tabor Evans and Robert Hart Davis. He also wrote screenplays and had a long relationship with Hollywood. While Whittington must have written very quickly to maintain his output, this wasn’t a case of quantity over quality. While some of his books were more successful than others and some of his titles began to sound alike—they often contained the words "sin," "murder," and "hell"—he maintained an astounding integrity to his work throughout his career, spinning imaginative plots with crisp dialogue and clearly drawn, unforgettable characters. Maybe his writing wasn’t as stylized as Thompson’s, Goodis’s or Cain’s, but his plotting and dialogue was as great, or better.