. Stout is best known as the creator of the larger-than-life fictional detective Nero Wolfe
, described by reviewer Will Cuppy
as "that Falstaff
of detectives." Wolfe's assistant Archie Goodwin
recorded the cases of the detective genius from 1934 (Fer-de-Lance) to 1975 (A Family Affair
The Nero Wolfe corpus was nominated Best Mystery Series of the Century at Bouchercon
2000, the world's largest mystery convention, and Rex Stout was nominated Best Mystery Writer of the Century.
Stout was born in Noblesville, Indiana
, but shortly after that his Quaker parents, John Wallace Stout and Lucetta Elizabeth Todhunter Stout, moved their family (nine children in all) to Kansas
His father was a teacher who encouraged his son to read, and Rex had read the entire Bible twice by the time he was four years old.
I really mean what I say. A Charles Dickens|Dickens character to me is a theatrical projection of a character. Not that it isn't real. It's real, but in that removed sense. But Sherlock Holmes is simply there. I would be astonished if I went to 221½ B Baker Street and didn't find him.
The incredible thing happens at the beginning of the story always, you notice, not the end. A Sherlock Holmes story is never a trick story.
It is impossible for any Sherlock Holmes story not to have at least one marvelous scene.
Of course the modern detective story puts off its best tricks till the last, but Arthur Conan Doyle|Doyle always put his best tricks first and that's why they're still the best ones.
There are damn few great writers and I'm not one of them. While I could afford to I played with words. When I could no longer afford that I wrote for money.
There are two kinds of characters in all fiction, the born and the synthetic. If the writer has to ask himself questions — is he tall, is he short? — he had better quit.
One trouble with living beyond your deserved number of years is that there's always some reason to live another year. And I'd like to live another year so that Richard Nixon|Nixon won't be President. If he's re-elected I'll have to live another four years.
My God you love to get them, and good Lord you hate to answer them.
The only thing I want is something I can't have; and that is to know if, 100 years from now, people will still buy my books.