On July 28th, 1975 Roger Ebert interviewed one of his favorite novelists, John D. MacDonald. Ebert recently made the interview available online for the first time.
Among the contemporary detective novelists, I said, isn’t it strange that you and Ross McDonald would both have the same last name? John D. MacDonald paused for a moment. “Even more strange,” he said, “is the title of his new book, ‘The Blue Hammer.’ Now what does that make you think of?”
One of your McGee books, I said. They always have a color in the title.
“I wrote him,” he said. “I said, ‘no doubt this is innocence on your part, but people are going to think it’s meretricious.’ He didn’t reply. I must confess I feel a little irritated by that.
“God knows we have enough trouble keeping our identities separate. Thank God the guy writes as well as he does. He could be some real plumber. I don’t want to feel victimized, but it comes down to this. I wouldn’t do it to him.”