Taking a Sabbatical in 2015

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A lesson about time: Laura Hunt’s antique clock has an unfortunate encounter with Waldo Lydecker’s shotgun in “Laura.”


As I have said here before: So many stories, only one Larry Harnisch.

In September, I put aside a long series of posts on the making of the 1944 film “Laura” to examine the Georgette Bauerdorf killing, also from 1944.

With the conclusion of the Bauerdorf project, I will be resuming the posts on “Laura,” but there is a catch.

I try to work several weeks ahead, so when I stopped in September, I had more than a dozen unpublished posts on “Laura” and the research was fresh in my mind.

Three months later, however, the trail is cold and I have to go back and review some aspects of the film. There is no way to do this without a noticeable seam between the old and new. The old posts will run through about Dec. 24 and the new posts will follow. This is an open-ended project, but I expect to conclude in January or February at the latest.

And after I finish “Laura,” I will be taking an extended sabbatical, probably for a year.

I have been blogging about Los Angeles history on a daily basis since 2005, first at the 1947project, with a detour for a long series of posts on Donald Wolfe’s “The Black Dahlia Files,” then the L.A. Daily Mirror, first at the Los Angeles Times and then as an independent project.

In that time, I have seen several history blogs sprout up and vanish – because they are an unimaginable amount of work. It’s the equivalent of a second job.

At this point in my life, aside from my duties at The Times, I need to make the Black Dahlia book my primary focus.

Mary Mallory’s posts will continue, as will the mystery photos, so there will be reasons to come back. But I won’t be writing anything else unless inspiration strikes. This was not an easy decision, because I enjoy doing the daily posts. But I have to be realistic and admit that if I am going to write a book, the blog will have to be put aside, at least for a year.

Stay tuned for “Laura” and then I’ll be taking a well-earned sabbatical.

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About lmharnisch

I am retired from the Los Angeles Times
This entry was posted in 1944, 1947, Black Dahlia, Film, Hollywood, LAPD and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

23 Responses to Taking a Sabbatical in 2015

  1. Anthony says:

    YOUR SABBATICAL IS OUR LOSS BUT CERTAINLY WE UNDERSTAND AS WE ARE MARRIED TO “caninecartoons.com” HOWEVER, WE WOULD ENCOURAGE YOU TO PUBLISH THE IDENTITY OF THE MYSTERY GUESTS AFTER A FEW DAYS. IN THE MEANTIME, THANKS FOR THE GREAT CONTENT AND DEDICATION. GOOD LUCK WITH THE BOOK AND COME BACK ASAP. ASC

    Like

  2. juliemerholz says:

    Good for you. I will miss your posts, but still look forward to the mystery photos. We all need a
    “time out” now and then. Thanks for all you have done.

    Like

  3. Bitter sweet moment. Long overdue and well deserved. I’ll keep coming back for the movie mystery pics, of course, and fill my days otherwise daydreaming about your book labors. I want to say here what I’ve already told you privately, that what you’ve created here has real value. I stop by a couple of times a day. Not sure what I’m going to do with all my extra time now. Wish I was closer, we could have a party. Maybe over at the Pacific Dining Car. We could all get up and do selected readings from Wikipedia.

    Like

  4. Eve says:

    Yessss! I mean, oh, crap, we will miss your blog (though I will stay in touch by e-mail), but YOU HAVE TO WORK ON YOUR BLACK DAHLIA BOOK. In fact, any help you need–proofreading, editing, whatever–just ask.

    There are very few books one can say are “needed,” but a non-crazy book on The Black Dahlia is one.

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  5. Ashley Head says:

    Love to read your blog – so detailed & interesting every day. Completely understand your need for a break but I, for one, look forward to your return!

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  6. Mary Mallory says:

    My posts will still go up every week besides the mystery photos.

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  7. dlhartzog says:

    Good luck! Will miss these articles, but look forward to your return, and your book is a definite purchase. Will still enjoy the movie photos and Mary Mallory’s posts.

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  8. Santos L Halper says:

    Thanks for the great work, Larry! And when you get back, more Parker Center Files! 😀

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  9. Kim Cooper says:

    So pleased to hear it, Larry. It will be nice to finally have an answer for gentle riders on our Real Black Dahlia tour who ask “Is there a good book about the case?” (Now we just send ’em to your Heaven is HERE! website)

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  10. Rick says:

    Good luck with the book

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  11. Although it will be our loss while you’re away from the LA Daily Mirror, the benefits are many for you – the BD book is the main one. Besides, we’ll still have MM’s wonderful articles (and maybe a LA history guest blogger or 2?) And then, hope to see you back writing about our local history, LH!

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  12. Benito says:

    You writing that book is like studying for the bar exam or getting married: Do it once, and do it right. Bonne chance!

    Like

  13. Sarah says:

    Thanks for all your hard work. It is much appreciated.

    Like

  14. Nathan says:

    I don’t know why you’d want to write a book on the Dahlia—everyone knows that was solved! (Didn’t you know it was the Illuminati in cahoots with Norris Poulson in a scheme to destroy the streetcars and therefore keep Abstract Expressionist painters out of unincorporated LA?) Anyway, as much as you’ll be missed, great to hear you’re hunkering down and taking it on full bore!

    Like

  15. Lee Rivas says:

    On the one hand, I’m going to seriously miss your posts. On the other hand, you’ve honed your research skills on us, your loyal readership; and are now ready to take on that definitive Black Dahlia project that you’ve had on the back burner all these many years. Don’t stay away too long,,,,

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  16. I am so glad you will be working on the Black Dahlia project–way over due! We know it is a lot of work, but your project will make a big difference in how Elizabeth Short’s tragedy is seen by the public for years to come Your friends and supporters will miss you but it is for the greater good. Go for it, Larry!

    Like

  17. Sam Flowers says:

    Anxious to get my hands on BD book, I know you will do a good job. Work hard, get it done and get back here. Larry, Are you back yet?

    Like

  18. E. Yarber says:

    I understand exactly how you feel. Just finished a project of my own (yesterday, in fact), and in the last weeks barely had time to FOLLOW blogs, let alone WRITE one.

    The internet is great for immediate feedback, but the research and insight I’ve found here deserve a permanent volume. You can’t do both at once, and you’re well ahead of the game for understanding it’s better not to try.

    Best of luck with your book. History will still be here when you’re ready to come back to this venue.

    Like

  19. mandymarie20 says:

    Best wishes on your project. I adore your posts, but completely understand the need for a sabbatical.

    Like

  20. Randy says:

    I cannot put into words how excited I am for your upcoming Dahlia book.

    Like

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