Keith James Hetherington has written commercial fiction in most categories, radio plays, and scripts for television. Today , he writes for Black Horse Western. He started writing after a work accident: 'One day I filled my boot with boiling water. When I took off the sock, the skin came, too. I had a week off and bought a book of locally published western stories.' Keith thought, "Hell, I can write as good as that! and penned The Texan. Ten pages in an exercise book. I submitted to Jack Atkins of Cleveland Publishing Co...They eventually asked for regular contributions, one a month, then they began publishing 15,000 and later 48,000 word novelettes and I got into that. When I wanted something, like a motorbike or a trip to England, I'd write like hell and save the same way, until I had enough, then ease off. I soon realized I could make more writing at my fast rate than I could working for a boss. I took the plunge just before I got married in 1957 and began churning them out: westerns, a couple of Larry Kent crime thillers, and the Carl Dekker series, which was about a world-weary adventurer, each yarn set in a different city or country.' Markets multiplied.
Hetherington also wrote short stories that separated pin-ups in Man magazine and the digest-sized Pocket Man, and for a similar New Zealand magazine called Stag. During the 1960s a boys' adventure book, Scuba Buccaneers by James Keith, was published by Angus and Robertson in Australia, and during the 1970s, two Keith Conway thrillers were published as hardcovers by Hale in Britain: Naked Nemesis and Hammerhead Reef. 'One of the thrillers went to paperback but I didn't find out for something like 14 years when I picked up a copy at a book exchange,' Hetherington has said. 'I'd forgotten to notify Hale's of change of address so they wouldn't pay me interest on the fees due!' Earlier, Hetherington had taken a job as a journalist in the Queensland Health Department.
'This involved writing short radio plays as well as articles. I became editor, and a Yank who worked for me went to work for the television series maker Crawford Productions in Melbourne. He kept pestering me to write for TV. There was big money there at the time, so I gave it a go. When I got tired of flying back and forth between Melbourne and Brisbane at weekends for editing of scripts, I moved to Melbourne in 1971 and got to work for Crawfords full-time, though I worked as a freelance from home.'
For the rest of his biography refer to http://www.blackhorsewesterns.com/ back issues/ issue 2 September 2005.
Sydney born Leonard Frank Meares published around 750 novels, mostly westerns. His best-known works feature Texas trouble-shooters Larry and Stretch. Before starting to write, Meares served in the Royal Australian Air Force, worked in the Department of Immigration and sold shoes. In the mid-1950s he bought a typewriter to write radio and film scripts. Inspired by the success of local paperback westerns, he wrote Trouble Town, which was published by the Cleveland Publishing Company in 1955. Although Meares used the pseudonym Marshall Grover, Cleveland decided to issue it under the name Johnny Nelson. Meares continued to write for Cleveland under various names including Ward Brennan, Glenn Murrell, Shad Denver and Brett Waring (a pseudonym more correctly associated with Keith Hetherington).
His tenth yarn, Drift! (1956), introduced Larry Valentine and Stretch Emerson. In 1960, he created a brief but memorable series of westerns set in and around the town of Bleak Creek. Four years later came The Night McLennan Died, the first of more than 70 westerns (sometimes called oaters) to feature cavalryman-turned-manhunter Big Jim Rand. In mid-1966, Meares left Cleveland to write exclusively for the Horwitz Group. Horwitz soon sold more than 30 novels to Bantam Books for publication in the United States, where for legal reasons 'Marshall Grover' became 'Marshall McCoy', 'Larry and Stretch' became 'Larry and Streak' and 'Big Jim Rand' became 'Nevada Jim Gage'.
Len began his association with Robert Hale Ltd. in 1981, with Jo Jo and the Private Eye the first of five Marty Moon detective novels published under the name Lester Malloy. Hale also issued his offbeat romance The Future and Philomena as Val Sterling in 1982. He even scored with two stand-alone crime novels, The Battle of Jericho Street (1984) as Frank Everton, and Dead Man Smiling (1986), published under his own name. His first Black Horse Western was, fittingly enough, a Larry and Stretch yarn entitled Rescue a Tall Texan (1989). Meares also created husband-and-wife detectives Rick and Hattie Braddock (first appearance Colorado Runaround, 1991).
Source: http://www.geocities.com/chapkeith/bhe2/index.htm...I (Sighted 2006)
Laffin was a prolific author, writing over 130 books as well as many articles and short stories. Most of the books dealt with military issues, in particular the Australian Digger and World War I. More than 200 of Laffin's short stories appeared in Australian magazines.
In his fiction writing, Laffin used a number of pseudonyms including the name 'Carl Dekker' which was shared by the other Australian writers Keith Hetherington and possibly Gene Janes (qq.v). (Dekker was the main character of the adventure novels written under this name.)
Laffin's employment was in the fields of academia and journalism; his main interests were history and archaeology.
This is how the backcover of his autobiography describes him: 'John Laffin has had an extraordinary life as a journalist and editor, novelist and poet, wartime soldier, military historian and war writer, battlefield archaeologist, broadcaster, lecturer and public speaker, intelligence agent and specialist on Islam and the Arab world, and teacher in three of England's leading colleges.' (A Kind of Immortality : Volume I)