Biography Progress Report #9 – Ladies & Gentlemen, We Have a Publisher!

I am thrilled to announce  my Ann Dvorak biography is going to be published by the University Press of Kentucky. My contract arrived in the mail yesterday and is now signed, sealed, and on its way to being delivered. Ever since I read “The Bennetts: An Acting Family” by Brian Kellow, I knew the University Press of Kentucky was the perfect publisher for my book, and was fortunate in that they initially contacted me back in 2008. I have been actively working with them since September on the proposal, and was relieved to hear the editorial board thought a book on Ann was a “no-brainer” for the Press.

As exciting (and surreal) as this latest development is, we still have a ways to go. My deadline is October 1st to submit a completed manuscript, and then it’s roughly nine months before actual publication. So, the book still will not see the light of day for another year or so. However, the fifteen years I have been working on this project have flown by, so what’s another year?

I have been frantically trying to complete all the research I have been putting off for years. Last week, I made the dreaded trip to the Superior Court archives which was just as awful as I anticipated (two hour wait for a microfilm reader among other things). I did dig up some valuable info and subsequently tracked down a lawyer who is still alive and has some vague recollections of Ann and her third husband. I also made a second trip to the Registrar Recorder/County Clerk’s Office in Norwalk, but have still not completed the property research and will have to squeeze another trip sometime in the near future. I made my fourth trip to the Warner Bros Archives at USC to make sure I had not missed anything over the years, and I finally visited USC’s Special Collections department to look at their images of Ann from the Los Angeles Examiner. Both archivists at USC were amazingly generous and allowed me to bring my two-year-old daughter with me. I also discovered some additional mysterious information about Ann which may remain unresolved because the research has to stop at some point!

Additionally, a woman whose maiden name is Romona Wade posted a comment on the 2008 interview I did on the Alternative Film Guide. Ramona is the granddaughter of Ann’s third husband Nicholas Wade, and is someone I am desperate to speak with. However, she did not leave any contact information. So, this is my official plea for Ramona to please contact me! (

Since I am now officially under the gun to finish the manuscript, my postings here will continue to be limited. Thanks again to everyone who has been supportive and patient though this process. The end is in sight!

In the meantime, I have begun writing articles for the Huffington Post. Don’t worry, it’s part of my full time job and is not taking away from my Ann-D writing time. The first post I submitted is “The Los Angeles of Herman Schultheis.”

More news soon!


  1. Cliff Aliperti June 7, 2012

    Congrats on landing a publisher for Ann–and I second your praise of the Bennett book! It’s really winding down, you must be so excited!

  2. Jacqueline T Lynch June 8, 2012

    Congratulations on the success of your hard work. Looking forward to the book.

  3. Christina June 8, 2012

    What wonderful news! 😀

  4. Dad June 8, 2012

    No words can tell you how proud I am!!!! Congrats!

  5. DickP June 8, 2012

    I can’t start to tell you how pleased I am hearing the news regarding your publisher. To me, Ann Dvorak was only a memory from a long ago distant past; but, as I have searched for more films in which my Mom had appeared as an extra, Ann Dvorak kept becoming more and more fascinating in the process. I am pleased to say that in the past years I have accumulated almost all of Ann’s films that remain. It’s easy to see the young Ann progress over the years in her acting, but the Ann Dvorak that is not in front of the camera has remained more of a mystery as time goes by. I’m confident that your book will fill in the missing pieces and should make for fascinating reading.

    Waiting for a year will be more than well worth the effort, believe me. I congratulate you on your determination to see the project through; far too many people would have found excuses to let the project die long ago.

    Without Christina Rice, Ann Dvorak today would continue to be a single line in the credits of some late night movie on TCM. Through your efforts, Ann Dvorak will now receive her proper place in history I believe. Ann, where ever she may be, will recognize that the names Christina Rice and Ann Dvorak will now be forever intertwined.

    Thank you once again and God bless you!!

  6. Bruce Nelson June 25, 2012

    Fantastic news. I can’t wait!

  7. Kat June 27, 2012

    Wow! That is just amazing that you wrote a biography about her. I was waiting for you to get finished, and I will definitely purchase it too. Congratulations to you! I love people who have the determination to just do something. 🙂

  8. DickP June 29, 2012

    It would be great (and fitting) if TCM would have another Ann Dvorak day and allow Christina to co-host the event as soon as her book hits the stores. Not only would it be great advertising for her book but add extra emphasis as to Ann Dvorak’s importance in the history of films, plus grab the TCM viewer’s attention (never hurts to have viewer numbers spike).

    The question is what can we all do to help make this happen? Obviously urging TCM to do this is a start but I would offer it needs to be choreographed; that is, starting a mass effort now would diminish the effect a year from now. I would offer that timing such an effort would be very important. Are there any persons that visit this forum that has had experience along these lines? Mmmh, does Robert Osborne visit this site on occasion? He has a web site, but it would be a bit early to start lobbying him, I would think! Any ideas????

    And, most important of all, the effort would need Christina’s blessing and direction!

  9. admin June 29, 2012

    Aww, thanks Dick for your continued support.


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