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American Literary Studies

Black Lizard Press

The Collection

Location: Department of Special Collections, Green Library

Size: 20 linear feet

Call number: M0932

Finding Guides: A printed version is available in the reading room of the Department of Special Collections. Electronic versions of this finding guide are also available. If you have Microsoft's Internet Explorer version 6.0 or higher, click here to connect to the XML version on the Stanford server; if not, click here for the html version on the Online Archives of California server.

Research Access and Use: Materials in the Department of Special Collections are non-circulating and must be used in the Special Collections' Reading Room in the Cecil H. Green Library. The Reading Room is open 10:00am to 5:00pm Monday through Friday. Photocopies, photographs, and microfilm can be made of some materials in the collections. For more information about the collections and access policies, please contact Special Collections by telephone at (650) 725-1022, by electronic mail at or by regular mail at the Department of Special Collections, Stanford University Libraries, Stanford, California 94305-6004.

History of the Black Lizard Press: Black Lizard was a remarkably successful and important publishing venture of Creative Arts Book Company of Berkeley, California. It made available to readers of the late 80s a body of classic pulp fiction originally published from the late 40s into the early 60s. The inspiration and literary mind of Black Lizard was Barry Gifford, who selected the titles, and made arrangements with the authors or their agents for publication. Random House bought out the Black Lizard imprint in the early 90s.

Content: A comprehensive publisher's archive which includes correspondence with authors as well as complete documentation of the business side of the press. In addition to copies of all the books published by the press, the archive features files on each book containing contracts, reviews, photographs, cover art, correspondence and related material. Also included are files on eleven projected titles which were planned for publication but were never released. The files are listed alphabetically by title:

  • After Dark My Sweet (Jim Thompson)
  • Agreement to Kill (Peter Rabe)
  • The Alcoholics (Jim Thompson)
  • The Baby Doll Murders (James O. Causey)
  • Black Friday (David Goodis)
  • Black Mass of Brother Springer (Charles Willeford)
  • Black Lizard Anthology of Crime Fiction (Ed Gorman, ed.)
  • Second Black Lizard Anthology (Ed Gorman, ed.)
  • Black Wings has my Angel (Elliot Chaze)
  • Blood Dance (Lansdale)
  • Blood on the Dining Room Floor (Gertrude Stein)
  • The Box (Peter Rabe)
  • Burglar (David Goodis)
  • Burnt Orange Heresey (Charles Willeford)
  • Carny Kill (Robert Edmund Alter)
  • Cassidy’s Girl (David Goodis)
  • Coffin and Co. (Roger L. Simon)
  • Cockfighter (Charles Willeford)
  • The Criminal (Jim Thompson)
  • Cropper’s Cabin (Jim Thompson)
  • The Damned Don’t Die (Jim Nisbet)
  • Dead Meat (Roger L. Simon)
  • Death Puppet (Jim Nisbet)
  • Detour (Helen Nielsen)
  • The Devil Wears his Wings (Harry Whittington)
  • Dig My Grave Deep (Peter Rabe)
  • Dr. Syntax (Michael Petracca)
  • The Far Cry (Frederic Brown)
  • Fast One (Paul Cain)
  • Fires That Destroy (Harry Whittington)
  • Frenzy (James O. Causey)
  • Forgive Me Killer (Harry Whittington)
  • The Getaway (Jim Thompson)
  • Goodbye L. A. (Murray Sinclair)
  • The Grifters (Jim Thompson)
  • A Hell of a Woman (Jim Thompson)
  • His Name was Death (Frederic Brown)
  • I Wake up Screaming (Steve Fisher)
  • Ill Wind (W. L. Heath)
  • It’s My Funeral (Peter Rabe)
  • Jealous Woman (James M. Cain)
  • Kill the Boss Goodbye (Peter Rabe)
  • The Killing (Lionel White)
  • Lethal Injection (Jim Nisbet)
  • Low Bite (Sin Sorocco)
  • Man on the Run (Charles Williams)
  • Masques (Bill Pronzini)
  • A Moment to Prey (Harry Whittington)
  • The Name of the Game is Death (Dan Marlowe)
  • Never Live Twice (Dan Marlowe)
  • Nightfall (David Goodis)
  • Night Squad (David Goodis)
  • Nothing in her Way (Charles Williams)
  • Nothing More than Murder (Jim Thompson)
  • Only in L. A. (Murray Sinclair)
  • The Out is Death (Peter Rabe)
  • Perversity (Francis Carco)
  • Pick-up (Charles Willeford)
  • Pop. 1280 (Jim Thompson)
  • Port Tropique (Barry Gifford)
  • Recoil (Jim Thompson)
  • The Root of his Evil (James M. Cain)
  • Running of the Beasts (Bill Pronzini and Barry Malzberg)
  • Savage Night (Jim Thompson)
  • Seven Slayers (Paul Cain)
  • Shoot the Piano Player (David Goodis)
  • Silk Stalkings (Susan Thompson and Victoria Nichols)
  • Sinful Woman (James M. Cain)
  • Sing me a Murder (Helen Nielsen)
  • The Straight Man (Kent Nelson)
  • Street of No Return (David Goodis)
  • Strongarm (Dan Marlowe)
  • Swamp Sister (Robert Edmund Alter)
  • A Swell Looking Babe (Jim Thompson)
  • A Ticket to Hell (Harry Whittington)
  • Tough Luck in L. A. (Murry Sinclair)
  • The Truth of the Matter (John Lutz)
  • Vengeance Man (Dan Marlowe)
  • Violent Saturday (W. L. Heath)
  • Web of Murder (Harry Whittington)
  • Wild Town (Jim Thompson)
  • You Play the Black and the Red Comes Up (Eric Knight)

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Last modified: July 5, 2006

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