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     The idea for this novel first came to me some forty-years ago, in the mid-seventies, when I was in my early twenties. I was quite the "film buff" in those days, or thought I was. I followed Film Comment magazine and American Film magazine, and I saw probably a hundred movies a year. I was also a Raymond Chandler nut. Still am. In my oh-so-achingly-humble opinion, he caught the dark, animalistic aspects of the American psyche perfectly through seven novels and three decades, and with great humor and never straying for a moment from the gumshoe-mystery format. As with any other writer or artist, I suppose, I forever fed my always ravenous Very Strong Imagination with ideas, wild ideas, ideas for stories, ideas for movies, ideas for more efficiently running a world government, ideas, ideas, and one of those great ideas, it seemed to me at the time, was, "Hey, wouldn't it be great if the Master Filmmaker Ingmar Bergman adapted a Raymond Chandler novel, say Farewell My Lovely or The Long Good-bye?" Although any of the novels except for the last one (Payback) would have been fine because Bergman'd only use it as a springboard anyway to create his world-class-level cinematic art. Here's how I saw it: Bergman would give Chandler gravitas as Francis Ford Coppola did with The Godfather, and Chandler would lighten Bergman up, make him a little more accessable to a world-wide audience. (Bergman did have a wonderful sense of humor, as a matter of fact, but it was humor so dark, so ironic, the humor of a depressed God.)     
    
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