Tuesday, March 15, 2005
I was talking to someone the other day about western writer Will Henry, and I discovered that Henry started his career writing scripts for cartoons. His real name was Henry Allen, though he's credited as Heck Allen on the IMDb. He worked a lot with Tex Avery, and he wrote most of the famous cartoons featuring Droopy Dog, including Northwest Hounded Police (1946), which is listed as #28 in The 50 Greatest Cartoons of all Time. It seems that when Allen started writing western novels, he used pen names (in addition to being Will Henry, he was also Clay Fisher) because he was afraid the studio wouldn't approve of his moonlighting. Allen's western novels are well thought of, so I guess today they'd be called "novels of the west" instead of westerns. Wouldn't want to stigmatize them. Neither would Allen, who seemed to want to downplay his writing for cartoons, as if it wasn't worthy. I think my life was influenced a lot more by Droopy Dog than by any of his westerns, however.