**** - Our Dealers - ****

2014/07/30

Beside its excellent programming, PulpFest is lauded for its substantial dealers’ room. Beginning on Thursday, August 7th, the 15,800 square-foot Regency Ballroom will house collectible pulp magazines and digests, vintage paperbacks, first edition hardcovers and series books, original art, B-movies and serials, collectible comic books, and more. And remember: for those members staying at the Hyatt-Regency Columbus, you’ll be able to partake in free, early-bird shopping on Thursday evening from 6 to 10 PM, a substantial $30 savings of the regular price of an early-bird membership.

In addition to Thursday’s early-bird hours, the PulpFest dealers’ room will be open from 10 AM to 5 PM on Friday, August 8th; from 10 AM to 4:45 PM on Saturday, August 9th; and from 10 AM to 2 PM on Sunday, August 10th. Please note that buying and selling opportunities on Sunday may be limited as dealers pack up their merchandise for their trip home.

Adventure HouseAdventure House/John Gunnison

John Gunnison will be offering his usual extensive stock of pulp magazines as well as High Adventure, G-8, and the many pulp replicas and collections he has published under the Adventure House banner. For more info, please visit http://adventurehouse.com/.

 

StrangeOperators_cover1Age of Aces/Bill Mann & the Kalb Brothers

Publishers of the best-selling The Spider vs. the Empire State, Chris and David Kalb, along with Bill Mann, will have their line of pulp reprints at PulpFest. From Smoke Wade to Captain Philip Strange, look to Age of Aces for the best in pulp fiction. Learn more by visiting Ages of Aces online.

 

AirshipAirship 27/Ron Fortier & Rob Davis

Headed by Ron Fortier and Rob Davis, Airship 27 is a leading producer of new pulp fiction. Starring the classic heroes of yesteryear–from The Black Bat and Sherlock Holmes to Ki-Gor and Secret Agent X–you’ll find plenty of thrills by visiting their Online Hangar. They’ll be premiering a new Challenger Storm novel and I. V. Frost comic book.

 

AlbertWalter and Jim Albert

These collecting brothers from Pennsylvania and Arkansas will have pulps, paperbacks, hardcovers, fanzines, and much more at their PulpFest 2014 table. You’re bound to find excellent values on some terrific items from Jim and Walter. So be sure to pay a visit to their table. You probably won’t leave empty handed.

 

AlvaradoMark Alvarado

Chicago’s Mark Alvarado, a longtime collector of books and pulp magazines will be exhibiting at PulpFest for the first time in 2014. Please welcome him to “Summer’s Great Pulp Con!”

 

 

BSDBBattered Silicon/George Vanderburgh

George has published over 600 books, including a wide variety of detective fiction and Sherlock Holmes scholarship as well as his Lost Treasures of the Pulps series that reprints many highly regarded pulp classics. His website is at www.batteredbox.com/.

 

Black DogBlack Dog Books/Tom Roberts

Tom Roberts and his longtime associate, Gene Christie, will be peddling a wide variety of pulp reprints produced under the Black Dog Books imprint. Black Dog publishes everything from hero pulps to weird menace to classic adventure yarns. Learn more by visiting Black Dog Books.

 

PEAPS99Brian Earl Brown

The official editor of the Pulp Era Amateur Press Society, also known as PEAPS, will be selling back numbers of the group’s quarterly mailings at his PulpFest table.

 

 

ChomkoMike Chomko, Books

Our 2010 Munsey winner Mike Chomko will be representing Altus Press and Stark House Press at PulpFest 2014. He’ll be premiering multiple titles from both publishers including Arthur Leo Zagat’s Tomorrow Saga. Please visit the Mike Chomko Books website and download a copy of his latest catalog.

 

CullersJack Cullers

If you’re looking for pulps and out-of-print paperbacks, pulp reprints or hardbound fiction and non-fiction, find your way to Jack’s table. He always has a wide variety of such material at very reasonable prices. You may just come across something you’ve been questing after for years.

 

Strange Stories 39-02Curious Bookshop/Ray Walsh

Ray will be offering a broad array of paper collectibles–pulps, paperbacks, original artwork, collectible hardcovers, vintage comic books, and more. He’ll be bringing it all from East Lansing, Michigan, home to the Curious Book Shop and Classicon for more than forty years.

 

Dark Star BooksDark Star Books/Gary Diedriech

A used and new book store that also sells pulps and comic books, located about an hour from Columbus in picturesque Yellow Springs, Ohio, Dark Star will be offering a variety of material including pulps, digests, Big Little Books, and collectible hardcovers and paperbacks.

 

Dave's Comic VaultDave’s Comic Vault/David White

Located in suburban Chicago, Dave has been collecting for nearly forty years and selling since 2006, mostly through ebay. At PulpFest he will have science-fiction pulps as well as some hero and horror magazines. Dave’s Comic Vault will also have fanzines, paperbacks, digests, and pulp reprints.

 

Dearly DepartedDearly Departed Books/S. & L. Edwards

Longtime Ohio booksellers Scott and Linda Edwards will a variety of pulps, paperbacks, and hardbound books. Their specialties include pulp magazines, paperbacks, and first edition genre fiction. Learn more by visiting Dearly Departed Books.

 

EllisDoug Ellis and Deb Fulton

Two of the founders of the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention, Doug and Deb will be offering a wide selection of general fiction, science-fiction and other pulps as well as original art and other collectibles. They’ll also be bringing a number of issues of Dime Mystery Magazine, some Spicy pulps, and several early Burroughs magazines.

 

EnosFantasy Publishing/Dick & Norma Enos

Fantasy Publishing will be selling the “new pulp” adventures of Rick Steele, ace trouble buster from the fifties. A former test pilot with a trio of “ace” assistants, Rick will go anywhere in search of adventure. Visit the Dick Enos site on Amazon.com for more info and meet Dick & Norma at PulpFest. They’ll have copies of The Yesterday Men and other entries in the series.

 

Future Fiction 39-11Bob Flowers

This good-natured collector from Illinois usually has a little bit of everything including pulps, paperbacks, fanzines, and related material. His offerings come from a wide range of genres–hero, detective, adventure, science fiction, and Western. Shop with Bob for variety and good, honest deals.

 

GirasolGirasol Collectables

Girasol will be selling their own line of high-quality Pulp Replicas, books about pulps, and other related items. Their recently added line of Pulp Cover Gallery Editions, hardcover volumes in full color, feature sets of cover images from various pulp titles. To browse their impressive assortment of offerings and to learn more about their annual pulp show, please visit their website at Girasol Collectables.

 

GramsMartin Grams

A widely published old-time radio and television expert, Martin carries a large selection of classic DVDs, along with books and magazines. He’ll also have copies of his bestselling books for sale–The Shadow: The History and Mystery of the Radio Program, his popular culture studies of The Green Hornet and The Twilight Zone, and more.

 

GrubbJasper and Larry “Doc” Grubb

PulpFest welcomes Doc Grubb, a collector since the 1960s, and his son, Jasper, back with many first editions, pulp fanzines, and reprints of various authors, all at great prices. They’ll also be bringing two original cover paintings by Edwin Bolenbaugh from Hunter, Trapper, Trader  from the 1930s. Jonathan and Larry hail from Maryland.

 

HackethornArt Hackathorn

A specialist in detective and Western pulps, Art will also be selling collectible hardcovers, paperbacks, and digests at his tables. Additionally he’ll have selected issues of American Boy Magazine on display at the convention.

 

HallRick Hall

Scouring flea markets and antique shows up and down the East Coast, Rick rescues pulps for the collections of his fellows in the pulp community. Focusing primarily on pulps, Rick adds fanzines and general magazines with “good authors” to the mix. You may find just what you’ve been looking for among Rick’s “found” treasures.

 

HartshornScott Hartshorn

This outgoing, Florida-based collector and dealer be offering a selection of Adventure, books by Robert E. Howard and Edgar Rice Burroughs, mystery and detective paperbacks, and science-fiction, fantasy, and pulp art. Scott is also planning to have a few collectible surprises as he returns to PulpFest as a dealer for the first time since 2010.

 

Astounding 30-01Heartwood Auctions/Richard & Frieda

With more than 25 years experience in vintage pulps, first editions, magazines, paperbacks, and other collectibles, Heartwood Auctions has the largest inventory available for sale. Now featuring the impressive Robert Weinberg collection of rare pulps, digests, paperbacks and related ephemera.

 

HermanPaul Herman

This Connecticut dealer and collector exhibits at many pulp and paperback conventions. He offers a wide variety of material including pulps, paperbacks, and vintage digests. He is very strong in the mystery and detective fields, turning up many scarce items.

 

Heroes & GamesHeroes and Games/Doug Sims

Heroes and Games recently purchased a thousand paperback books of all our favorite pulp heroes. Mostly complete series of many different pulp heroes! This will be the first con that this collection will be available. Doug will also have Golden, Silver and Bronze age comics. You can also visit them at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Heroes-and-Games/185598464814443?ref=hl or at their store in the Greater Columbus Convention Center.

 

HickmanMark Hickman

This Ohio dealer will be offering a variety of science-fiction magazines and hero pulps, as well as comic books and original artwork from pulps, comics, digests, and paperbacks–a little bit of everything. Mark will also be selling copies of The Collected Pulp Era, a two-volume set reprinting the complete run of his father Lynn Hickman’s classic fanzine.

 

Hurd'sHurd’s Outpost/Keith Hurd

Keith Hurd’s collectibles store, Hurd’s Outpost, is located in the town of Cortland in northeastern Ohio. This will be Keith’s first PulpFest. We hope he will be back for many, many more. Keith will be selling autographs and posters at the convention.

 

 

KurzmanKubik Fine Books/Owen D. Kubik & Rachell Chilton

Hailing from Dayton, Ohio, Owen and Rachell will have a variety of books, magazines, and pulps including numerous issues of Argosy and Galaxy, Doc Savage paperbacks, books by Burroughs, Robert E. Howard, and other fantasy and adventure authors, plus a nice selection of Shadow items. This is their first pulp convention.

 

Weird Tales 35-11Dave Kurzman

Dave returns to PulpFest following an absence of several years with a large, fresh-to-market, mid-grade batch of Shadow and Doc pulps, plus many boxes of mid-thirties Argosy. He’ll also be bringing long runs of Planet, Jungle Stories, The Spider, and about 200 Weird Tales.

 

MysteryAdventure36-11Dave LePlae

A dealer from Michigan, Dave is a longtime pulp collector and convention attendee. He will have a selection of original pulp magazines in a range of conditions for sale, including detective, adventure, hero, and other genres.

 

 

Black Mask 02-42Brian Livingston

A hearty PulpFest welcome to Brian Livingston, appearing in our dealers’ room for the first time. He’ll be bringing over 25 long boxes stocked with pulps including a fresh-to-market collection from Indiana that has been in storage since the early seventies. Included are titles such as Black Mask, Dime Detective, Dime Mystery, Doc Savage, The Shadow, Thrilling Adventures, Thrilling Detective and many other detective pulps.

 

McKinzieRen McKinzie

Originally from Virginia, Ren now lives in Columbus. He’s a freelance illustrator who will be selling art prints at PulpFest. You can find samples of Ren’s work at www.darkness33.deviantart.comHe will be selling at PulpFest for the first time. Please welcome him.

 

Ace Mystery 36-05Main Street Music/David Schmidt

From Waterloo, Illinois, Dave will be bringing pulps and digests, collectible paperbacks, original artwork, and other paper ephemera. Visit Main Street Music for more information about this fine Midwestern dealer of paper collectibles.

 

 

MartinWalker Martin

Collecting since the early days of pulp fandom, Walker has owned practically every pulp at least once. A resident of New Jersey, he’ll be selling pulps, DVD’S, original artwork, and one-of-a- kind canceled checks from the files of Munsey and Popular Publications. Walker will also be on several of our panels this year.

 

Meteor HouseMeteor House/Michael Croteau

FarmerCon returns to PulpFest for the fourth straight year. Meteor House is releasing three titles this summer: The Worlds of Philip José Farmer 4: Voyages to Strange Days, The Evil in Pemberley House , (co-author Win Scott Eckert will be signing the trade edition at the convention) and Phileas Fogg and the War of Shadows. Meteor House will also have items from Farmer’s estate sale, plus works by FarmerCon attendees.

 

Layout 1Murania Press/Ed Hulse

In addition to the latest issue of his award-winning fanzine Blood ‘n’ Thunder, Ed will have other titles from the Murania Press book line at the convention. He also have his usual smattering of high-grade pulp magazines.

 

 

KubikPhil & Holly Nelson

This personable dealer and his daughter, both from Waverly, Ohio, will be armed with a wide variety of pulps, from Argosy and Detective Fiction Weekly to Doc Savage and Planet Stories. He’ll also have paperbacks, comics and other items. He’s a fan of North-West Stories, Top-Notch, and detective fiction.

 

Riding the Pulp TrailLaurie Powers

This California resident, creator of the Laurie’s Wild West blog, will be selling copies of Hidden GhostsRiding the Pulp Trail, and other books by her grandfather, pulp author Paul S. Powers. Laurie is currently writing a biography of Daisy Bacon, editor of Love Story Magazine.

 

ReinagelWayne Reinagel

Writer/illustrator Wayne Reinagel is president and publisher of Knightraven Studios. He will be offering his critically acclaimed “Steampulp” novels: Pulp Heroes–More Than Mortal, Pulp Heroes–Khan Dynasty (nominated for four separate best novel awards in 2011) and Modern Marvels–Viktoriana.

 

Amazing Stories 28-08David Ritter

A new dealer at PulpFest, David is a collector from Boston who focuses on ephemera related to H. P. Lovecraft and E. E. “Doc” Smith. For the last several years he’s been looking to upgrade his Weird Tales run and collect related art, fanzines and amateur Lovecraft-related publications. David will be offering selected issues of Weird Tales and other items from his collection, including a nice August 1928 Amazing Stories. He is in the market for issues of Oriental Stories.

 

SainesJoseph Saine

A full-time proprietor of an  antique toy shop by day and a mystery mavin by night, Joe does one show a year and PulpFest is it! Hailing from northwest Ohio, Joe will be offering 350 fresh-to-market science-fiction and some western pulps, most in super condition. And don’t forget the 75 lots of pulps that Joe will be selling at this year’s Saturday Night Auction. Click here to see them.

 

SanctumSanctum Books/Anthony Tollin

Our 2011 Munsey Award winner will be selling all of his Sanctum Books pulp reprints–The Avenger, Doc Savage, Nick Carter, The Phantom Detective, The Shadow, The Skipper, The Spider and The Whisperer–eight of the greatest pulp heroes in one of the best formats imaginable. He’ll also have his special multi-packs featuring art prints and other special material.

 

SaundersDavid Saunders

The creator of the Munsey, pulp art expert David will be selling signed copies of his biographies of pulp artists, including his father, Norman Saunders, and Spicy artist H. J. Ward. Visit David’s website at www.pulpartists.com for brief, illustrated biographies of many pulp artists. David will also be discussing pulp artist John Newton Howitt during our Saturday night programming.

 

Startling Stories 50-01Tom Skemp

Specializing in horror and science fiction, Tom is a resident of Latrobe, Pennsylvania. He will be selling collectible hardcovers and a wide variety of paperbacks as well as some limited and British editions. Check out his table for some chills and thrills and some great finds.

 

Illustrated ManTim’s Books/Tim Paxton

Tim Paxton of Grand Rapids, Michigan specializes in paperbacks and small press, first edition hardcovers, dealing mainly in high-grade science fiction, fantasy, and horror as well as mysteries and pulp-related material. Check out the Tim’s Books website at AbeBooks.com.

 

FlowersBarry Traylor

Barry will be selling bedsheet issues of Astounding and Fantastic Adventures, a smattering of adventure pulps, back issues of Illustration and Blood ‘n’ Thunder, science-fiction and mystery digests, and more. He is also the “go-to” guy when it comes to the PulpFest auctions. If you have any questions concerning our auctions, please write to barry@pulpfest.com or visit our “Auctions” page.

 

TriplettJami Triplett

Please extend a hearty welcome to this first-time PulpFest dealer. Jami is an artist who will be attending with another artist friend. Please welcome them to “Summer’s Great Pulp Con.”

 

 

VanderbeekSheila Vanderbeek

A pulp collector for about forty years, Sheila is from Kalamazoo, Michigan. She will be bringing hundreds of pulp magazines from all genres for sale or trade. Of course, the more she sells, the more she’ll be able to buy from the many fine dealers who will be attending PulpFest 2014.

 

WehlerJon Wehler

This personable dealer and collector offers pulps, original art, and other paper collectibles. He’ll also have lots of vintage paperbacks from many different genres. Based in Ohio, he exhibits at a variety of book and paper shows throughout the Midwest. And he’s a nice guy.

 

Astonishing Stories 40-02Chuck Welch

Chuck helps to manage our website and social media outlets like our Twitter account. He’ll be offering information about the social media aspect of Pulpfest–the website and other online methods we use to promote the festival. Check out Chuck’s Hidalgo Trading Company.

 

If you are a dealer or collector who would like to sell at PulpFest 2014, please visit our Registration page or email convention chairperson Jack Cullers at jack@pulpfest.com for further information about the convention.

**** - Worrell Auction - ****

2014/07/10

Weird Tales 53-01On Saturday, August 9th, PulpFest 2014 will be auctioning a selection of books, fanzines, manuscripts, and ephemera from the collection of Everil Worrell, author of nineteen stories for Weird Tales. In addition to Weird Tales, Worrell wrote short fiction for Macfadden’s Ghost Stories and Ray Palmer’s Mystic Magazine and poetry for The Overland Monthly.

PulpFest is pleased to offer twenty-plus lots of collectibles from the Worrell estate,  left to  a small church in Washington, DC after the passing of the author’s only child, Eileen Murphy. St. David’s parish is excited about having PulpFest handle this portion of their former parishioner’s estate, hoping that the items will find their way into the hands of those who would appreciate them most–pulp fiction aficionados!

Below are the lots from the Worrell estate that will be offered during our Saturday Night Auction on August 9, starting at 9:30 PM. Please note that the Worrell lots will be sold following the conclusion of our auction featuring 75 lots of pulp magazines and related items.

2014_07676–Weird Tales Collector #1-6

2014_07777–Post card from Ray Bradbury (1953) + related letter from Everill Worrell

2014_07878–Letter from Ray Bradbury (1953)

2014_07979–Weird Tales Story signed by Bob Weinberg + Weird Tales Collector #1

2014_08080–Manuscript of “Knight of the Broken Sword” (story submitted to If)

2014_08181–Manuscript of “Through Magic Casements” and related letter from Dorothy McIlwraith (story submitted to F&SF)

2014_08282–Weird Tales letter from Dorothy McIlwraith w/envelope

2014_08383–Weird Tales letter from Dorothy McIlwraith w/envelope

2014_08484–Weird Tales letter from Dorothy McIlwraith w/envelope

2014_08585–Weird Tales letter from Dorothy McIlwraith w/envelope

2014_08686–Weird Tales letter from Dorothy McIlwraith w/envelope

2014_08787–Weird Tales letter from Dorothy McIlwraith w/envelope

2014_08888–Two Weird Tales letters from Dorothy McIlwraith w/o envelopes

2014_08989–Manuscript of “The Tea Dance”

2014_09090–Manuscript of “Hearts Must Grow Hard” (SF story)

2014_09191–Manuscript of “Night Should be Black” and related letter from Dorothy McIlwraith

2014_09292–Manuscript of “Believe In Tangibles”

2014_09393–Manuscript of “Beyond The Mutants” (SF story)

2014_09494–Manuscript of “Sea Trail”

2014_09595–Manuscript of “Incantation” (with rejection slip from Coronet magazine)

2014_09696–Manuscript of “Come Back Again”

2014_09797–Lot of miscellaneous ephemera (poetry, musical scores, notebooks, Patent Office journal)

2014_09898–Lot of watercolors and sketches

Weird Tales Books

99–Weird Tales: 32 Unearthed Terrors & Weird Vampire Tales

Detective Tales

100–Detective Tales for June 1923

 

**** - Science Fiction and the Pulps - ****

2014/07/04

From April 4, 2014 through June 15, 2014, PulpFest serialized an article written by Mike Chomko that presented a history of magazine science fiction. The essay was broken down into 21 segments that were posted every few days to the convention’s website until the entire work had appeared. The unabridged version of Mike’s article was published in The Pulpster #23, available through our Program Book page. Reproduced below is the serialized version of “Science Fiction and the Pulps: A Genre Evolves.”

To learn more about the images used in this post, click on the illustrations. Click here for references consulted for this article.

The Origins of Science Fiction

Startling1939-01Way back in 1939, a sudden blossoming of  magazine science fiction and fantasy occurred. Following the introduction of Startling Stories at the end of 1938, no less than eight pulps featuring fantastic fiction debuted in the next year–Dynamic Science Stories, Strange Stories, Science Fiction, Unknown, Fantastic Adventures, Future Fiction, Famous Fantastic Mysteries, and Planet Stories. Additionally, three other science-fiction pulps were in preparation during 1939–Astonishing Stories, Captain Future, and Super Science Stories–and the first World Science Fiction Convention was held in New York City, home to the World’s Fair and its “World of Tomorrow” theme.

Over at Astounding Stories, editor John Wood Campbell was publishing the first science-fiction stories of Robert A. Heinlein, Theodore Sturgeon, and A. E. Van Vogt, as well as Isaac Asimov’s first story for the magazine and Hubert Rogers’ first cover. With his growing stable of writers and artists, Campbell was ushering in what would become known as the Golden Age of Science Fiction. But from whence did the genre come?

Although science fiction can trace its roots to such imaginary voyages, satires, and utopias as Francis Bacon’s New Atlantis(1626), Johannes Kepler’s Somnium (1634), Francis Godwin’s The Man in the Moone (1638), Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels (1726), and other works, most modern scholars point to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, originally published in 1818, as the first science-fiction novel. In the years that followed the publication of this important work of both Gothic horror and science fiction, an increasing amount of fiction, once the province of books, found its way into magazines.

It was in periodicals that Edgar Allan Poe, best remembered for his horror and mystery tales, introduced logic and science to explain elements of the fantastic. Beginning with “Ms. Found in a Bottle” (1833), a story involving a sinking ship caught in a whirlpool leading toward the earth’s interior, Poe introduced science fiction to the short story. In the remaining sixteen years of his life, the author would periodically return to the genre in tales featuring trips to the Moon, new species, the death of the human race, the transmutation of lead into gold, and more.

From the Earth to the MoonWhen Poe died in 1849, the strength of his stories kept them fresh and alive, inspiring authors the world over. One of these was Jules Verne who introduced “precise, scientific details” into his own writing, culminating in his first great triumph, Five Weeks in a Balloon (1863). Encouraged by the novel’s great success, the story’s original publisher, Pierre Hetzel, contracted the author to produce two novels each year for the next twenty years to run in a new periodical. Journey to the Center of the Earth (1864), From the Earth to the Moon (1865), Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea (1869-70), Around the World in Eighty Days (1873), and Off on a Comet (1877) are just some of the masterpieces of science fiction penned by this master of the genre.

As the century progressed and Europe and North America became increasingly industrialized, magazines began to reach a much wider, sometimes national, audience. Blackwood’s Magazine, Harper’s New Monthly Magazine, Atlantic Monthly,Scribner’s Monthly, and others emerged, publishing the fiction of Walter Scott, Charles Dickens, Mark Twain, Fitz-James O’Brien, and others. The dime novels, penny-dreadfuls, and story papers also emerged during these years, offering tales of derring-do to a growing juvenile audience. It was here that the “American Jules Verne,” Luis Senarens, developed the Frank Reade, Jr. series that featured steam-powered contraptions in exciting adventure yarns.

Franke Reade, Jr.Still to come are H. Rider Haggard, Arthur Conan Doyle and The Strand Magazine, H. G. Wells and Pearson’s, Munsey’s and The Argosy and George Allan England. We’ll discuss these and more as we continue our examination of the offspring of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein – the fantastic magazines of Europe and the United States where science fiction and fantasy evolved as genres.

Prelude to the Pulps

Amazing_Stories 27-08As we learned in our previous post, “Origins of Science Fiction,” magazines began to reach a much wider audience as Europe and America became more industrialized. Increasingly urban and literate societies required cheap, entertaining, and easily accessible entertainment to escape the drudgery of the mills and offices. Since magazines could be produced cheaply and in a timely fashion, the last quarter of the nineteenth century became “The Age of the Storytellers.” Beginning around 1880, when Robert Louis Stevenson started to publish his first works of fiction, the world would witness the birth of the popular fiction magazine as well as the pulp magazine.

Strand 1891-07Stevenson’s “Treasure Island,” first serialized in 1881-82, helped to provide the spark for other authors to try their hand at similar fiction. Works such as H. Rider Haggard’s King Solomon’s Mines(1885), “She” (1886), and “Allan Quatermain” (1887), as well as Arthur Conan Doyle’s “A Study in Scarlet” (1887) demonstrated the need for an inexpensive, popular fiction magazine to be published on a regular basis. Shortly after Christmas in 1890, the first of these—The Strand Magazine—was launched by George Newnes. Filled with illustrations, the periodical really took off during the summer of 1891 with the start of Conan Doyle’s “The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes,” introducing one of the most successful continuing character series of all time.

With the success of The Strand Magazine came a host of imitators, among them Pearson’s Magazine. It debuted in late 1895 and soon became one of the leading publishers of magazine science fiction, featuring the future war stories of George Griffith and the scientific romances of Herbert George Wells. “The War of the Worlds” and “The Invisible Man,” both originally published in Pearson’s in 1897, are still enjoyed today, over a century after their initial appearances. Educated in the sciences as well as a literary genius, Wells’ mastery of both science and fiction was readily apparent. His later science fiction, including “The First Men in the Moon” (1900-1901) and “The Country of the Blind “1904), would run in The Strand.

In our next installment, we’ll turn our attention across the pond where an American entrepreneur named Frank A. Munsey was busy turning a struggling magazine into the first American all-fiction magazine.

War of the Worlds

A Magazine for the Common Man

Pearson's 1899 Sept.We have seen that the popular British fiction magazines were modeled after the illustrated periodicals of America. However, unlike their British counterparts, Harper’s, Scribner’s, and Century — the leading American magazines of the late nineteenth century — were beyond the financial and the intellectual reach of the average U. S. citizen.

It was left to Frank A. Munsey–a man about whom it has been suggested, “contributed to the journalism of his day the talent of a meat packer, the morals of a money changer and the manner of an undertaker”–to deliver the first American periodical specifically intended for the common man. In his own words, Munsey decided to create “a magazine of the people and for the people, with pictures and art and good cheer and human interest throughout.”

Frank Munsey was born in Maine where he became interested in publishing. With minimal funds, he traveled to New York City and founded The Golden Argosy, a children’s weekly, in late 1882. Working largely on credit, he struggled for years, building his circulation through advertising and sheer determination. Deciding that the future lay in the adult market, he founded Munsey’s Weekly in 1889, soon converting it to Munsey’s Magazine. In 1893, convinced that a magazine could only be successful if the price was right, he slashed the price of Munsey’s to a dime and marketed it directly to newsdealers, essentially cutting out the middle man.

As the circulation of Munsey’s climbed to hundreds of thousands of copies, the publisher converted The Argosy to an adult magazine, similarly priced and modeled after it’s brethren. Envisioning a new kind of magazine, Frank Munsey wrote, “We want stories . . . . not dialect sketches, not washed out studies of effete human nature, not weak tales of sickly sentimentality, no ‘pretty’ writing . . . . We do want fiction in which there is a story, a force, a tale that means something–in short a story. Good writing is as common as clam shells, while good stories are as rare as statesmanship.”

Argosy 1896-12In October 1896, The Argosy became the first all-fiction magazine. Two months later in a cost-cutting move, it began to be printed on the wood-pulp paper he used for his daily newspaper and the rough-paper fiction magazine, or pulp, was born.

 

 

The Munsey Magazines

All Story 1905-01Shortly after The Argosy had been converted to the first all-fiction magazine in 1896, and not long thereafter the first pulp magazine, its circulation had doubled to about 80,000 copies per issue. By 1907, the year the periodical celebrated its 25th anniversary, its circulation had reached a half million copies, earning its publisher about $300,000 per year.

From its beginning, The Argosy made a home for fantastic fiction, reprinting “Citizen 504,” a dystopian short story written by Charles H. Palmer, in the December 1896 issue. Other reprints, from a variety of sources would follow. As the century turned, original fiction of a fantastic nature began to appear in The Argosy, including works by Jared L. Fuller, Park Winthrop, and longtime dime novelist William Wallace Cook. Edgar Franklin Stearns also began to contribute his humorous fantasies concerning off-beat contraptions to the magazine.

As its readership grew, The Argosy was bound to attract some imitators. Street & Smith, the longtime publisher of dime novels and story papers, was first to meet the call, debuting The Popular Magazine with its November 1903 issue. As the circulation of the new magazine grew, it became apparent to Frank Munsey that there was room on the newsstand for more than one pulp. At the end of 1904, the publisher debuted The All-Story Magazine.

allstory_tarzanMore than any other periodical prior to the introduction of the specialized science-fiction and fantasy pulps, The All-Story became the major repository for the “different” tale or the pseudo-scientific yarn. It was soon joined by other Munsey magazines–The Scrap Book and The Railroad Man’s Magazine (both 1906),The Ocean/The Live Wire (1907), andThe Cavalier (1908). All of these, The Cavalier in particular, published fantastic fiction. However, it was all but a prelude to the serial novel that would begin in the February 1912 issue of The All-Story– “Under the Moons of Mars”–credited to Norman Bean.

Bean’s novel—the first published fiction of Edgar Rice Burroughs—would introduce John Carter of Mars to readers. It would soon be followed by the author’s “Tarzan of the Apes,” published in its entirety in the October 1912 issue of The All-Story. These two novels, along with the pseudo-scientific works of H. G. Wells and his American disciple, George Allan England, would serve as templates for much of the science fiction written over the next twenty-five years, generating a type of fiction best known as “the scientific romance.” The Munsey chain in particular worked to develop this school of fiction, creating a stable of writers–Ray Cummings, J. U. Geisy, Victor Rousseau, Francis Stevens, Charles B. Stilson, and the best of all, Abraham Merritt–able to contribute such stories.

Adventure 1910-11Although the fiction of Burroughs and Wells and those “inspired” by their work would remain popular for some time to come, its share of the pulp market would diminish as new magazines began to arrive on the scene. Beginning with Adventure Magazine, introduced by the Ridgway Company in 1910, these specialized pulps lessened the attraction of the general fiction magazines for those who enjoyed a certain type of story–mystery, romance, western, or straight adventure. In not too many years, the fantasy and science-fiction fan would likewise be served.

The Unique Magazine

Weird Tales March 1923Weird Tales was the first periodical specifically devoted to the fantasy genre. Premiering in early 1923, its publishers envisioned “The Unique Magazine” as a place for a writer to be given “free rein to express his innermost feelings in a manner befitting great literature.” In reality, the early issues of the pulp were filled with ghost stories, the choice of the magazine’s editor, Edwin Baird. Far more interested in Rural’s Real Detective and Mystery Stories, Baird had little interest in fantasy.

Weird Tales came into its own in late 1924 when Farnsworth Wright was named the magazine’s editor. In the years ahead, the pulp would become known for its fantasy and supernatural fiction, publishing the work of Robert E. Howard, H. P. Lovecraft, and Clark Ashton Smith. Later issues would feature substantial efforts by Robert Bloch, Ray Bradbury, Carl Jacobi, Henry Kuttner, C. L. Moore, Seabury Quinn, Manly Wade Wellman, and others. Weird Tales would likewise become noted for its artists. Hannes Bok, Margaret BrundageLee Brown Coye, and Virgil Finlay all contributed greatly to the fantasy art field through their work for “The Unique Magazine.”

In addition to publishing some of the best fantasy and supernatural fiction of the twentieth century, Weird Tales, like the Munsey magazines, featured science fiction in its pages, offering tales of interplanetary expeditions, brain transference, death rays, lost races, parallel worlds, and more. Edmond Hamilton was its leading contributor of science fiction. With stories about alien invasions, space police, and evolution gone wild, the author became known as “world-wrecker” Hamilton. Other notable science fiction in Weird Tales included work by Austin Hall, Otis Adelbert Kline, Frank Belknap Long, C. L. Moore, Donald Wandrei, and Jack Williamson. In his later years, H. P. Lovecraft spun his own style of science fiction in his tales of cosmic horror.

Although science fiction was frequently found in its pages—particularly during its early years—Weird Tales was not the first science-fiction pulp. That was left for Hugo Gernsback, an immigrant from Luxembourg, to develop.

Weird Tales 42-03The original run of Weird Tales began with its March 1923 number and ran through its September 1954 issue, for a total of 279 issues. Edwin Baird, Farnsworth Wright, and Dorothy McIlwraith (beginning in May 1940) were its editors. It was revived in 1973-74 for four issues, edited by Sam Moskowitz. A paperback series lasting four more issues, edited by Lin Carter, appeared from 1981-1983. The magazine was revived in 1988 by George H. Scithers, Darrell Schweitzer and John Gregory Betancourt and has, more or less, been published on a continuous basis since that time. At this writing, the 361st issue had been released. It is currently published by John Harlacher with Marvin Kaye serving as editor. For more details, visit the magazine’s website at http://weirdtalesmagazine.com/.

Science and Invention

ScienceAndInvention1923-08Called “The Barnum of the Space Age” by Life magazine in 1963, Hugo Gernsback emigrated to the United States in 1904. Soon thereafter, he founded a company to import electrical equipment and began producing a catalog. By 1908, Gernsback’s catalog had evolved into his first magazine,Modern Electrics, selling for ten cents. Three years later, his magazine began to publish fiction, serializing Gernsback’s novel about one of the leading scientists of the year 2660, “Ralph 124C 41+.” Considered to be one of the worst novels published in the history of science fiction, Gernsback’s tale must have struck a cord with readers. Not long after its conclusion in the March 1912 Modern Electrics, fiction became a regular feature in the magazine’s pages and subsequent Gernsback releases.

In the spring of 1913, Gernsback began publishing a new science periodical, The Electrical Experimenter. Before long, the magazine was serializing its publisher’s “Baron Münchhausen’s New Scientific Adventures,” a series of fictitious tales set on Mars, the Moon, and elsewhere. These were soon joined by George Frederic Stratton’s stories about an entrepreneur who invested in a variety of intriguing inventions, Thomas Benson’s “Wireless Wiz” yarns, and Charles S. Wolfe’s stories about a scientific detective named Joe Fenner. With its August 1920 number, The Electrical Experimenter was renamedScience and Invention and fiction became a larger portion of its contents. The fiction that Gernsback published in his science magazines generally revolved around a scientific principle.  Clement Fezandié’s Doctor Hackensaw stories forScience and Invention are prime examples of this type of story.

In early 1923, perhaps in an effort to boost circulation ofScience and Invention or to test the waters in the growing market for specialized fiction magazines, Gernsback began publishing more stories and fiction that was meant to entertain including works by H. G. Wells, George Allan England, and Ray Cummings. Later that same year, Gernsback released a “Scientific Fiction Number” of his science magazine. The August 1923 issue of Science and Invention featured six “scientifiction” stories. It would not be long before Hugo Gernsback would found the first science-fiction magazine, Amazing Stories.

Modern Electrics became a magazine in April 1908. It was published by Hugo Gernsback until he sold it in 1913. The last Gernsback issue was dated March 1913.

Gernsback launched The Electrical Experimenter with its May 1913 number. Its title was changed to Science and Invention with its August 1920 issue. The last Gernsback issue was dated April 1929 when Gernsback lost control of the magazine following bankruptcy proceedings filed against his publishing company.

Amazing Stories

Amazing Stories 26-04It was hard to miss the first issue ofAmazing Stories on the newsstand. Letter-size, larger than the typical pulp magazine, with three-dimensional block letters trailing across its masthead and a bright yellow backdrop that framed an alien landscape and a bright red, ringed planet and small moon, the magazine certainly stood out on the sales rack. Frank R. Paul was the artist.

The names on the front cover of the magazine’s early issues were also major selling points: Edgar Allan Poe, Jules Verne, H. G. Wells, Garrett P. Serviss, Edgar Rice Burroughs, A. Merritt, and others. It was just as Gernsback wrote in his editorial for the pulp’s first issue: “By ‘scientifiction’ I mean the Jules Verne, H. G. Wells, and Edgar Allan Poe type story—a charming romance intermingled with scientific fact and prophetic vision.” That is what the readers of Amazing Stories sought: “They wanted to be entertained, to escape, to experience that sense of wonder that good visionary fiction brought.” (The Time Machines).

Using stories drawn from the Munsey magazines, Blue Book,The Strand, and other sources, Gernsback offered reprints of science-fiction classics, eventually coupling these with new stories generated through contests. Using such competitions, Gernsback began to acquire a stable of new writers willing and able to write scientifiction: Miles J. Breur, Clare Winger Harris, David H. Keller, S. P. Meek, H. Hyatt Verrill, Harl Vincent, and others. Through his letter column, entitled “Discussions,” he reeled his readers into his world of wonder.

Amazing08-28Within months, the new specialty magazine was selling over 100,000 copies of each issue. In establishing the first specialized science-fiction magazine, Gernsback had tapped a vein of wonder, shared by lonely individuals prone to “imaginative flights of fancy.” Next would come Amazing Stories Annual, published in the summer of 1927 and featuring Edgar Rice Burroughs’ The Mastermind of MarsAmazing Stories Quarterly followed in the winter of 1928. Then, in the August 1928 number of Amazing Stories, Gernsback introduced his readers to E. E. “Doc” Smith’s “The Skylark of Space” and Philip Francis Nowlan’s “Armageddon—2419 AD,” the first tale to feature Buck Rogers. These two “space operas” would color science fiction for well over a decade, turning it into “that crazy Buck Rogers stuff.”

Despite its seeming success, the Gernsback publishing empire continuously experienced cash flow problems. Plowing money into his radio interests and paying an extremely hefty salary to both himself and his brother, Gernsback offered generally low word rates for stories. Coupled with a slow payment schedule, often months after a story had been published, very few authors were interested in writing for the company. In early 1929, Gernsback’s printer and paper supplier demanded payment on past due bills, leading the publisher to file for bankruptcy. Experimenter Publishing Company, went into receivership, ending Hugo Gernsback’s involvement with the first science-fiction pulp, Amazing Stories.

Hugo Gernsback edited and published Amazing Stories from April 1926 through April 1929. Afterward, T. O’Conor Sloane, who had assisted Gernsback from the start, became the magazine’s editor until the April 1938 issue. Sloane was far from being a visionary; he thought space travel was impossible.

Sloane and Gernsback were also the editors of Amazing Stories Quarterly. The latter helmed the magazine from Winter 1928 through Spring 1929. Sloane edited the magazine from Summer 1929 through Fall 1934, its final issue. Later quarterlies, published by Ziff-Davis, were rebound issues of Amazing Stories and not a separate magazine.

Amazing Stories 45-03Ziff-Davis took over the magazine with its April 1938 number and Ray Palmer as editor. The new editor turned Amazing Stories into a juvenile magazine, establishing a stable of authors to write fiction aimed at the youth market. Toward the end of his editorial reign, Palmer started “The Shaver Mystery,” a hoax involving an evil race that causes all of mankind’s problems from their home in underground caverns. Palmer’s last issue was dated December 1949. In later years, he became involved with UFOs and similar topics, publishing Fate magazine.

Howard Browne, a Palmer assistant, assumed the editorship in January 1950. Primarily interested in mystery fiction, Browne nevertheless turned Amazing Stories around, directing it toward an adult audience. It became a digest magazine with its April/May 1953 issue. Browne left the magazine following its August 1956 number. He was succeeded by Paul Fairman and the talented Cele Goldsmith. Ms. Goldsmith managed the magazine from March 1957 through June 1965, during which time it garnered a great deal of respect.

The Ultimate Publishing company, headed by Sol Cohen, began publishing the magazine with its August 1965 issue. Joseph Wrzos was its first editor, followed by Harry Harrison, Barry Malzberg, Ted White, and Elinor Mavor. The magazine was acquired by TSR Hobbies in March 1982, with Mavor temporarily serving as editor. George Scithers became the editor with the November 1982 issue. Later editors included Patrick Price, Kim Mohan, and Jeff Berkwits. Its last issue was published in March 2005 with Paizo Publishing in charge.

In July 2012, longtime science-fiction fan Steve Davidson revived Amazing Stories as an online magazine. You can find it at http://amazingstoriesmag.com/.

From 1985-1987, NBC television ran an anthology series called Amazing Stories. It was created by Steven Spielberg.

The Sense of Wonder (Stories)

Science Wonder Stories 29-06Soon after losing his small publishing empire to bankruptcy, Hugo Gernsback was back in the publishing business. Within months, he had returned to the stands with a pair of science-fiction magazines–Science Wonder Storiesand Air Wonder Stories. Using stories from the Amazing Stories pipeline, Gernsback debuted his new letter-sized periodicals in the spring of 1929.

The new Gernsback magazines were edited by David Lasser. A former technical writer and graduate of MIT, Lasser believed, “If Wonder Stories was to amount to anything, we had to do better . . . .  we had to lift the quality of the stories. We needed more imagination in the stories, we needed a sound scientific basis, and since these were appealing mainly to young people, there should also be a socially useful theme to inspire the readers.”

Although Hugo Gernsback had final say on the make-up of each issue, Lasser (and Charles D. Hornig after him) was largely responsible for story selection. He did not hesitate to ask for revisions or share story ideas with writers. Nevertheless, largely due to Gernsback’s reluctance to pay more than one-half cent a word and his tendency to withhold payment to his writers until legal action was threatened, both Lasser and his successor were hard-pressed to acquire exceptional works of fiction.

Despite their handicap, both Lasser and Hornig were able to publish a fair number of inventive stories, often the work of new writers who, after apprenticing with the Gernsback magazines, went elsewhere to further their reputations. Eando  Binder, Raymond Z. Gallun, Laurence Manning, P. Schuyler Miller, Nat Schachner, Clifford Simak, Leslie F. Stone, Charles R. Tanner, Stanley Weinbaum, and Arthur Leo Zagat are some of the writers whose early science fiction can be found in the pages of the Wonder magazines. More established writers such as Edmond Hamilton, David H. Keller, Clark Ashton Smith, and Jack Williamson also appeared regularly in Gernsback’s science-fiction line.

In addition to introducing readers to the work of some of the leading practitioners of early science fiction, Wonder Storiesalso helped early science-fiction fans to realize that they were not alone in the world. Through its letter column and “Science Fiction League,” organized by Charles Hornig during his editorial reign, readers began to reach out to one another, organizing clubs and societies to foster interest in science and science fiction. Some of these groups are still functioning today.

Air Wonder Stories 29-07Perhaps if it had not been introduced just a few months before the stock market crash of October 1929, Gernsback’s Wonder group would have met with larger success. The shaky economy, combined with bad distribution and Hugo Gernsback’s financial reputation, led to the cancellation of one magazine after another. The first to end was Air Wonder Stories, dropped after eleven issues. The last to go was Wonder Stories. It ran for 78 issues as a “Gernsback Publication.”

Hugo Gernsback’s “Wonder Group” featured four magazines. Science Wonder Stories was the first, debuting with its June 1929 number. Air Wonder Stories appeared one month later, lasting through its issue dated May 1930. It was then “combined” with Science Wonder to form Wonder Stories.

Scientific Detective Monthly was introduced in December 1929. Later retitled Amazing Detective Tales, it was sold to another publisher after ten issues.

Science Wonder Stories Quarterlyretitled Wonder Stories Quarterly with its Summer 1930 issue–was canceled after the Winter 1933 number. It had debuted in the fall of 1929 and ran for fourteen issues.

Thrilling Wonder Stories 40-09The final issue of Wonder Stories was dated April 1936. Sold to Standard Magazines, it returned to the stands as Thrilling Wonder Stories in July 1936. Edited by Mort Weisinger, it published pulp action-adventure stories aimed at the juvenile market. With its Winter 1945 issue, Sam Merwin became the editor and the magazine began to take on a more adult slant. He was followed by Samuel Mines in late 1951 and Alexander Samalman in the fall of 1954. The magazine was canceled following its 111th issue, dated Winter 1955. In 2007, it was revived for two additional issues published and edited by Winston Engle.

In the early fifties, Standard issued a Wonder Story Annual, a reprint magazine that ran for four issues.

Following the loss of Wonder Stories, Hugo Gernsback made two curtain calls in the world of science-fiction publishing. The first was Superworld Comics, a comic book he published in 1940. It lasted for three issues. His last bow came in 1953 when he released Science-Fiction Plus, a slick magazine that ran for seven issues. It was edited by Sam Moskowitz.

Stories of Super Science

Astounding 30-01Except for scattered stories in the general-fiction pulps, Hugo Gernsback monopolized the early science-fiction market. This came to an end in late 1929 when Clayton Magazines, publisher of All Star Detective Stories, Clues, Cowboy Stories, Five-Novels Monthly, Flyers, Ranch Romances, and other pulps, jumped into the fray with Astounding Stories of Super-Science.

The brainchild of Harry Bates, editor of Clayton’s Wide World Adventures, the new magazine was meant to entertain rather than educate. “Astounding. As a name it lacked dignity, but no matter: it was gutsy and would compel attention, and it generally resembled Amazing and could be counted on to attract the eye of that magazine’s readers while pleasantly promising others that the stories would stun them.”

Alva Rogers writes in A Requiem for Astounding: “Astounding was unabashedly an action adventure magazine and made no pretense of trying to present science in a sugar-coated form as did, to some extent, the other two magazines. The amount of science found in its pages was minimal–just enough to support the action and little more. Lessons in science could be obtained in school or in text books; driving action and heroic adventure was what the reader of  Astounding wanted. Interplanetary wars and space battles, hideous and menacing Bug Eyed Monsters . . . the courage, ingenuity and brains of a sngle puny man, or small group of men, pitted against the terrible might and overwhelming scientific knowledge of extraterrestrial aliens–with defeat the inevitable fate of the invaders: that was what set the reader’s pulse pounding. That was the type of story he could identify with, become the hero of. Action was the hallmark of Astounding Stories of Super-Science.”

The Clayton Astounding would run for 34 issues, its end brought on by William Clayton’s decision to buy out his business partner. Although the continuing economic depression certainly contributed to the publisher’s demise, his inability to raise enough funds to pay off his associate proved to be the Clayton Magazines ultimate downfall. Astounding Stories was cancelled following its March 1933 number, the result of a poor business decision.

Strange Tales 32-01Beginning in 1931, Clayton also put out seven issues of Strange Tales of Mystery and Terror. Also edited by Harry Bates, Strange Tales was a direct competitor to Weird Tales. By paying its authors two cents a word, a rate that Weird Tales could not match, Bates was able to attract some of the leading contributors from “The Unique Magazine.” Although many fine stories appeared in Strange Tales, Jack Williamson’s  short novel, “Wolves of Darkness,” and Hugh B. Cave’s “Murgunstrumm,” are perhaps the most notable works to run in the short-lived magazine.

Like Astounding, Clayton’s Strange Tales of Mystery and Terror was canceled in 1933. Between 2003 and 2007, it was revived for three additional issues by Wildside Press.

Miracle Science and Fantasy Storiespublished by former Clayton editor Harold Hersey, also appeared in 1931. Lasting just two issues, this science-fiction pulp published nothing of lasting significance.

An Astounding Resurrection

Astounding Stories 34-12Like Hugo Gernsback had done before it, the demise of Astounding Stories was shortlived. Sold to Street & Smith, the powerhouse publisher of The Shadow, Wild West Weekly, Love Story Magazine,and other pulps, the magazine was back on the racks in September 1933. The newAstounding Stories was edited by F. Orlin Tremaine who seemed to have great faith in the future of science fiction.

Mirroring Harry Bate’s ability to offer more money to his writers and pay rapidly, Tremaine worked to improve the literary quality of the fiction that he published. He challenged his writers to think outside the box, asking them to explore new ideas through what he called “thought variant” stories. Aided by his assistant editors, Desmond Hall and, later, John W. Campbell, Tremaine hoped to diminish the literary bias against science fiction by publishing unusual works by the best science-fiction writers of the 1930s—Campbell, L. Sprague DeCamp, Raymond Z. Gallun, Murray Leinster, Frank Belknap Long, H. P. Lovecraft, C. L. Moore, Ross Rocklynne, Eric Frank Russell, Nat Schachner, E. E. Smith, Don A. Stuart, John Taine, Donald Wandrei, Stanley G. Weinbaum, Jack Williamson, and others.

After publishing such classic works of science fiction as John W. Campbell’s “The Mightiest Machine,” Raymond Z. Gallun’s “Old Faithful,” Murray Leinster’s “Sidewise in Time,” H. P. Lovecraft’s “At the Mountains of Madness” and “The Colour Out of Time,” E. E. Smith’s “The Skylark of Valeron” and “Galactic Patrol,” Don A. Stuart’s “Twilight,” ” Stanley Weinbaum’s “The Red Peri,” and Jack Williamson’s “The Legion of Space,” Tremaine became an editorial director at Street & Smith. Although the best years of the magazine were yet to come, Tremaine had transformed Astounding Stories into the leading magazine in the science-fiction field. There it would stay for at least the next three decades.

Campbell’s Astounding

Astounding Stories 38-01Hired by Street & Smith in 1937, John W. Campbell became the editor of Astounding Stories upon the promotion of F. Orlin Tremaine. Writing under his own name and several pseudonyms, Campbell was one of the leading science-fiction writers of the 1930s. His story “Twilight,” published in the November 1934 Astounding under the Don A. Stuart pen name, is considered a science-fiction classic.

While he worked through a backlog of stories purchased by his predecessor, Campbell began making changes to the magazine, or “mutations,” as he called them. The first major “mutation” came with the March 1938 issue when the magazine became known as Astounding Science-Fiction.

Wanting to create a science-fiction magazine for mature readers, Campbell asked his authors to provide readers with “new worlds that science might offer.” Writers, both new and old, began to respond: Lester Del Rey with “The Faithful” and “Helen O’Loy;” Jack Williamson with “The Legion of Time;” and L. Ron Hubbard with “The Tramp.” Campbell himself joined in with “Who Goes There,” as did Clifford D. Simak, who had left the field, and new writers L. Sprague de Camp and Eric Frank Russell. Seasoned professionals such as Arthur J. Burks, Raymond Z. Gallun, and Manly Wade Wellman also joined in.

Astounding Science-Fiction 39-02But Campbell had merely been tilling the soil in 1938, preparing it for the blossoming of science fiction’s Golden Age in 1939. The stage was set when the February 1939 Astounding Science-Fiction featured the magazine’s first cover by Hubert Rogers. A free lance illustrator long associated with Adventure, Rogers would eventually paint nearly sixty covers for Campbell’s Astounding.

Although the outpouring of exceptional fiction continued in the new year with stories such as Simak’s “Cosmic Engineers” and Williamson’s “One Against the Legion,” it is the July 1939 issue that is cited most often as the start of the Golden Age ofAstounding and in turn, of science fiction. Behind a very effective cover by artist Graves Gladney, the reader would find the first prose fiction by A. E. van Vogt as well as Isaac Asimov’s first story for Campbell’s magazine. August’s and September’s issues continued the trend with the first stories of Robert A. Heinlein and Theodore Sturgeon appearing in the magazine. October’s number began the serialization of E. E. Smith’s “Gray Lensman,” along with another tale by Heinlein.

The forties brought with them the flowering of Robert Heinlein with stories such as “The Roads Must Roll,” “Blowups Happen,” “Universe,” and “Methuselah’s Children,” all published under his own name, and “Sixth Column,” “By His Bootstraps,” and “Beyond this Horizon,” published under the his Anson McDonald pseudonym. Isaac Asimov began to be heard with works such as “Nightfall” and the first stories of his robot and “Foundation” series. A. E. van Vogt contributed “Slan” and began the “Weapon Shops” tales. And L. Ron Hubbard’s “Final Blackout,” serialized in 1940, caused a substantial stir.

As the decade wore on, World War II began to effectAstounding as Campbell’s writers were pulled away to help with the war effort. Others however, emerged to take their place. Writing as Lewis Padgett, Henry Kuttner and C. L. Moore contributed such tales as “The Twonky” and “Mimsy Were the Borogoves” while Jack Williamson, writing as Will Stewart, began the “Seetee” series. Lester del Rey’s “Nerves” became one of the most popular stories published in 1942 while Fritz Leiber’s “Gather Darkness” and C. L. Moore’s “Judgment Night” were two of the best to appear in 1943. Hal Clement, Raymond F. Jones, and George O. Smith all began writing for Campbell during this period and Murray Leinster returned toAstounding. The magazine itself also went through a couple of changes during this time, becoming letter-sized at the start of 1942 and a digest at the end of 1943.

Although Astounding Science-Fiction would continue to publish outstanding works of science fiction throughout the war and for many years to come, the magazine’s and science fiction’s golden luster began to diminish as the years wore on. As the fifties began, it became increasingly apparent that Galaxy Science Fiction and The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction had become the leading lights of magazine science fiction. Although John Campbell would win eight Hugo Awards for best editor between 1952 and 1965, his age was past.

Astounding Science Fiction 60-01In 1960, Astounding was renamedAstounding/Analog Science Fact & Fiction. The “Astounding” was dropped from the title with the October 1960 number when it became known as Analog Science Fact-Fiction. It has survived into the present time using some sort of variation on that title. John Campbell continued to edit Astounding/Analoguntil his death in July 1971. He was succeeded as editor, first by Ben Bova, and later by Stanley Schmidt and Trevor Quachri. The magazine was sold to Davis Publications in 1980 and Dell Magazines in 1992, the company that publishes it today.

Science Fiction, the Marvel Way

Marvel Science Stories 38-08By the summer of 1938, the science-fiction genre seemed to be flourishing.Astounding was generating a good deal of excitement by helping readers to “. . . experience the new worlds that science might offer.” Thrilling Wonder Stories was nearing a peak, publishing action-adventure stories for kids. Ray Palmer was rapidly turning Amazing Stories around following years of struggle.

Martin Goodman, who would later be the publisher of Marvel Comics, debuted Marvel Science Stories in July. Very adept at spotting trends, Goodman would, “Let someone else risk their money experimenting with different types and genres of magazines . . . Once a winner emerged, Goodman would jump in with a knockoff. Or two. Or twelve . . . .”

Noticing the growing success of the science-fiction pulps, Goodman decided to launch his own. He acquired cover art from illustrator Norman Saunders and stories by journeymen such as Arthur J. Burks, Stanton A. Coblentz, and Henry Kuttner. Later issues would feature fiction by Eando Binder, David H. Keller, Harl Vincent, Jack Williamson, and others, and covers by Frank R. Paul and Wesso.

Not content with just one science-fiction pulp, Goodman released a second in early 1939—Dynamic Science Stories. Again using covers by Paul and Saunders, Dynamic published stories by Nelson Bond, L. Sprague de Camp, Manly Wade Wellman, Robert Moore Williams, and others. A third Goodman science-fiction title, Uncanny Stories, appeared in 1941.

Dynamic Science Stories 39-02For Goodman, “. . . success meant . . . jumping on a successful trend and pumping multiple similar titles . . . through the pipeline as fast as possible in order to rake in as much profit as possible . . . . If any one foundered below a certain profit threshold, it was scuttled without so much as a backward glance.” Thus, Uncanny Stories lasted but a single issue while two numbers of Dynamic Science Storiesfound their way to the racks. Marvel Science Stories ran for five issues before being added to Goodman’s Red Circle weird-menace line as Marvel Tales. After two shudder pulp issues, Goodman converted it back into a science-fiction magazine entitled Marvel Stories for two more issues, the last dated April 1941. He tried another Marvel pulp during the science-fiction boom of the early fifties, but only six issues appeared.

Thrilling Science Fiction & Fantasy

Startling1939-01Ned Pines’ Thrilling Group entered the science-fiction pulp market after purchasing Wonder Stories from Hugo GernsbackEarly in 1938, editor Mort Weisinger asked his readers for suggestions concerning a companion to the rechristened Thrilling Wonder Stories. The result of Weisinger’s poll was Startling Stories, a new pulp that debuted at the end of 1938.

Startling Stories featured a lead novel, complete in each issue, plus a number of short stories, one a reprint culled from Gernsback’s Wonder magazines. In later years, Thrilling Wonder Stories also became a reprint source for its companion magazine. Many of the novels to appear in Startling Stories were action-packed space operas, while others bordered on the science fantasies of Abraham Merritt.

When Sam Merwin became the editor of Startling in 1945, he began to mix more mature novels into the magazine. Some of the highlights of this period include Fredric Brown’s “What Mad Universe,” Arthur C. Clarke’s “Against the Fall of Night,” and Edmond Hamilton’s “The City at World’s End.” There were also short stories by Ray Bradbury, C. M. Kornbluth, Fritz Leiber, Clifford Simak, and others. In the early fifties, Startlingpublished Philip José Farmer’s “The Lovers,” a short novel that pioneered the intelligent use of sex in science fiction.

Strange Stories 39-02One month after launching Startling Stories, the Thrilling Group releasedStrange Stories, a fantasy magazine intended to compete with Weird Tales. Unfortunately, the magazine’s thirteen issues crowded so many stories into each number that there was little room to develop character, plot, or atmosphere. Most of the stories published in Strange Stories were “short weird or horror pieces with twists or unusual endings.” The magazine was cancelled following its February 1941 number.

In later years, Standard Magazines added Fantastic Story Quarterly, a pulp largely composed of fiction reprinted from Gernsback’s Wonder magazines to its line. It ran from 1950 to 1955, its last number dated Spring 1955. During the years 1952 and 1953, Standard published Space Stories. Aimed at readers who enjoyed space operas, it lasted for just five issues.

In early 1955, both Thrilling Wonder Stories and Fantastic Story Magazine were absorbed by Startling Stories. The last Standard science-fiction pulp was cancelled following its 99thissue, dated Fall 1955.

After Mort Weisinger left Standard Magazines to manage theSuperman line for DC Comics, Oscar J. Friend became the editor of Startling Stories, bringing the inane Sergeant Saturn to the magazine. Samuel Mines served as editor from late 1951 through the fall of 1954. He was followed by Alexander Samalman and Herbert D. Kastle. Between 2008 and 2012, Ron Hanna’s Wild Cat Books revived Startling Stories for eight more issues.

Unknown Worlds of John Campbell

Unknown 39-03In the February 1939 Astounding Science-Fiction, John W. Campbell announced, “. . . the second Friday of every month, a new magazine will appear.Unknown will be to fantasy whatAstounding has made itself represent to science fiction. It will offer fantasy of a quality so far different from that which has appeared in the past as to change your entire understanding of the term.”

Debuting in February 1939 and publishing a complete novel in each issue, Unknown featured many works now considered classics of the fantasy genre—Anthony Boucher’s “The Compleat Werewolf,” L. Sprague DeCamp’s “Lest Darkness Fall,” L. Ron Hubbard’s “Fear” and “Typewriter in the Sky,” Fritz Leiber’s “Conjure Wife” and the early Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser stories, Norvell W. Page’s Prester John stories “Flame Wind” and “Sons of the Bear-God,” ” Theodore Sturgeon’s “It,” Jack Williamson’s “Darker Than You Think,” and many others.

Over its 39-issue run, the magazine went through a variety of permutations including the elimination of cover art beginning with the July 1940 number. “We’ve made the July cover look very dignified. We’re going to ask your news dealer to display it with magazines of general class—not with the newsprints . . . . It is unique and appeals to adult minds . . . . I feel most would enjoyUnknown if given a chance to try it.” The magazine would be enlarged to letter-size and get a new name in  late 1941 as Street & Smith sought better display space. Despite the changes, the renamed Unknown Worlds would be cancelled following the issue dated October 1943. Although a letter-sized magazine reprint anthology entitled From Unknown Worlds was issued in 1948, no additional issues of the publication considered the best fantasy magazine of all time would appear.

From Unknown Worlds

Science Fiction & Archie Comics

Science Fiction 39-03Before he helped found MLJ Comics–later Archie Comics–Louis Silberkleit published pulp magazines. The mentor of Martin Goodman, Silberkleit was a follower of trends, hoping to obtain a quick profit through the magazines he published. Noting the growing science-fiction market in 1939, Silberkleit issued a pair of magazines.

First to the gate was Science Fiction, released in the second month of the year. Future Fiction came late in the year, its first issue dated November 1939. Former Gernsback editor Charles D. Hornig helmed both magazines, working on a freelance basis from his home. Produced on tight budgets, neither magazine offered much in the way of memorable fiction since most authors could find better-paying venues for their work. Both pulps became repositories for stories rejected by other publishers with real author names hidden behind pseudonyms.

Future Fiction 39-11During the summer of 1940, Silberkleit added a third science-fiction title—Science Fiction Quarterly—to the mix. Featuring a complete novel in each issue, the magazine reprinted a handful of Ray Cummings’ early novels as well as the lead stories from the first two issues of Hugo Gernsback’s Science Wonder Quarterly. Arthur J. Burks also contributed a pair of original novels.

In the spring of 1941, Robert W. Lowndes became editor of both Future Fiction and Science Fiction Quarterly. Soon thereafter, Science Fiction was merged with Future Fiction to become Future combined with Science Fiction. Under Lowndes, the quality of the Silberkleit science-fiction pulps improved markedly as the new editor coaxed fiction from his friends among the Futurians, a group of science-fiction fans based in New York City. However, despite Lowndes’ efforts, the publisher decided to cancel both science-fiction titles in 1943 as war-induced paper shortages took their toll on the industry.

Science Fiction Quarterly 58-02

During the 1950s science-fiction boom, Louis Silberkleit resurrected all three of his science-fiction magazines. The quarterly lasted into 1958 while Future Science Fiction and Science Fiction Stories lasted until the spring of 1960. Future would be the last of all the science-fiction magazines in the pulp format to be published. Its final issue was dated April 1960.

Ray Palmer’s Fantastic Adventure

Fantastic Adventures 39-05The blossoming of the science-fiction and fantasy genres gathered more steam when Ziff-Davis premiered Fantastic Adventures in March 1939 with Ray Palmer editing. “Fantastic Adventuresgives you the best in fantasy and off-trail science fiction . . . . Everyone likes to think and ponder and wonder at times. But . . . it is a basic requirement that we entertain you.”

Fantastic Adventures 40-10Within a year of its introduction,Fantastic Adventures seemed to be living on borrowed time. However, the combination of a strong story—Robert Moore Williams’ “Jongor of Lost Land,” a Tarzan-inspired adventure yarn—coupled with powerful front cover art by J. Allen St. John saved the pulp from oblivion in the fall of 1940. Within a few months, Palmer had inked a contract with Edgar Rice Burroughs for a quartet of novelettes featuring Carson of Venus. He would turn again to St. John for cover art to illustrate the stories and Fantastic Adventures was off and running.

While Burroughs, Williams, and others were thrilling readers with fantastic adventures of action and adventure, other writers began to contribute humorous tales. Stories by Nelson Bond and Ziff-Davis regulars William P. McGivern and David Wright O’Brien helped create the Fantastic Adventures school of screwball comedy. Robert Bloch, with his “Lefty Feep” stories, was the leading practitioner of this form of writing.

For most of the fiction that would appear in Fantastic Adventures during his years as editor, Palmer largely relied on a stable of writers based in Chicago. In addition to those mentioned previously, Howard Browne, Paul W. Fairman, Chester S. Geier, Roger P. Graham, Berkeley Livingston, Rog Phillips, Geoff St. Reynard, Don Wilcox, and Leroy Yerxa all contributed significantly to the magazine.

Following Palmer’s departure from Ziff-Davis in late 1949, Howard Browne became the publisher’s editor-in-chief. Given an increased budget, Browne worked to improve the quality ofFantastic Adventures, but the change came too late. With the pulps in their death throes, the magazine’s end was near. In the spring of 1953, it was merged into Fantastic, a successful digest magazine featuring science fiction and fantasy that Browne had started for Ziff-Davis in the previous year.

Fantastic 52 Summer

Although Fantastic would run into the early eighties,Fantastic Adventures would be no more following the combined May-June 1953 number.

Aristocrats of the Pulps

Famous Fantastic Mysteries 40-03In a letter published in “The Readers’ Viewpoint” column in its June 1948 issue, Robert Boyer labeled Famous Fantastic Mysteries as “. . . the Aristocrat of the Pulps, the acme of stf perfection,” a title that can likewise be conferred upon the magazine’s later companions, Fantastic Novels and A. Merritt’s Fantasy Magazine. Even today, they remain prized collectibles.

Started by the Frank A. Munsey Company in the fall of 1939 and edited by Mary Gnaedinger, Famous Fantastic Mysteries was created to reprint the scientific romances originally published in The All-Story, Argosy, and The Cavalier. Welcomed by readers anxious to experience the classics found in the Munsey files, Famous Fantastic Mysteries was joined by a companion title, Fantastic Novels, in the early summer of 1940. For most of the next year, the two magazines were published in alternating months.

Fantastic Novels 48-03Unfortunately, declining profits led to a reorganization of Munsey’s pulp line and the cancellation of several titles, including Fantastic Novels after just five issues. The following year, Munsey sold a number of its pulps—including their two classic reprint magazines—to Popular Publications. Reluctant to take on a pair of fantasy titles, the new publisher opted to continue Famous Fantastic Mysteries but not its younger companion.

At this point in its history, it was Popular’s policy to run only new stories or fiction that had not previously appeared in a magazine. Given that FFM was largely a reprint magazine, it was decided to alter the pulp’s content and reprint fantastic fiction that had never been published in American magazines. Although many classics were published by the magazine during this period, few were greeted with the same acclaim as had been the case with the Munsey yarns. Perhaps this is why Popular, in early 1948, decided to revive Fantastic Novels, once again relying on the Munsey archives for its content. A third title, A. Merritt’s Fantasy Magazine, was added in late 1949.

Notwithstanding their elevated status on America’s newsstands, all three magazines disappeared from the racks during the early fifties as Popular withdrew from the pulp market: A. Merritt’s Fantasy Magazine in 1950, Fantastic Novels in 1951, and last of all, Famous Fantastic Mysteries during the spring of 1953.

A. Merritt's Fantasy 49-12

Space Operas in the Sky

Planet Stories 39-WAlthough Fiction House had been around since the 1920s, it waited until 1939 to enter the science-fiction field. A year before, it had joined the comic book industry with Jumbo Comics, home to Sheena, “Queen of the Jungle.” Perhaps trying to hedge its bets, Fiction House launched a science-fiction pulp, Planet Stories, and a science-fiction comic book,Planet Comics, at the same time.

Over the years, Fiction House had developed a reputation for offering action-packed stories of adventure in its pulps. Planet Stories would prove to be no exception to this rule. Over its 71 issues, the rough-paper magazine would be home to countless science-fiction adventure stories called “space operas.”

In her introduction to The Best of Planet Stories #1, acclaimed author and screenwriter Leigh Brackett writes: “Planet, unashamedly, published “space opera” . . . . a story that has an element of adventure . . . . of great courage and daring, of battle against the forces of darkness and the unknown . . . The so-called space opera is the folk-tale, the hero-tale, of our particular niche in history . . . . These stories served to stretch our little minds, to draw us out beyond our narrow skies into the vast glooms of interstellar space, where the great suns ride in splendor and the bright nebulae fling their veils of fire parsecs-long across the universe; where the Coal-sack and the Horsehead make patterns of black mystery; where the Cepheid variables blink their evil eyes and a billion nameless planets may harbor life-forms infinitely numerous and strange.”

Running from 1939 – 1955, the early issues of Planet Storiesfeatured writers such as Eando Binder, Nelson Bond, Ray Cummings, Ed Earl Repp, and Ross Rocklynne. By the middle-forties, Leigh Brackett and Ray Bradbury reigned supreme with the former offering seventeen “science fantasies,” while the latter introduced readers to The Martian Chronicles. They were joined by less-acclaimed authors such as Alfred Coppel, Gardner F. Fox, Henry Hasse, Emmett McDowell, and Basil Wells. The late forties and early fifties found the magazine publishing work by Poul Anderson, James Blish, Philip K. Dick, Chad Oliver, Mack Reynolds, and other greats who would go on to develop science fiction’s modern era.

Planet Stories 42-WPerhaps it was Planet Stories’ emphasis on cover art with a strong dose of sex—usually imagined by Allen Anderson or Frank Kelly Freas—that helped turn “space opera” into a pejorative term. Per Leigh Brackett, “It was fashionable for a while, among certain elements of science-fiction fandom, to hate Planet Stories. They hated the magazine, apparently, because it was not Astounding Stories.” For seventy-one issues, rather than aiming for the cerebrum, it aimed for the gut. Who is to say that one target is more valid than the other?

Captain Future, Man of Tomorrow

Captain Future 40-WIn addition to the exploding science-fiction pulp market, 1939 also witnessed the first World Science Fiction Convention. According to the gathering’s chairman Sam Moskowitz, Standard Magazines’ editors Leo Margulies and Mort Weisinger came up with “a new idea in fantasy magazines” at the convention: Captain Future, a science-fiction hero pulp that premiered at year’s end.

In actuality, Standard’s editorial staff had been batting around ideas for a science-fictional single-character magazine for months, even asking long-time pulpster Edmond Hamilton to work up something involving a “Mr. Future, Wizard of Science.”  Eventually, the character evolved into Captain Future, a super-scientist headquartered on the Moon. In each issue of the pulp, Hamilton’s hero and his faithful assistants—known as the Futuremen—would save the solar system and, in later issues, the universe. Although action-packed and entertaining, the novels were juvenile space operas.

Startling Stories 50-01Captain Future ran until the spring of 1944, surviving for seventeen issues with Edmond Hamilton writing fifteen of the lead novels. In 1945-46, three more Captain Future adventures appeared inStartling Stories. Hamilton wrote two of them and Manly Wade Wellman one. Seven shorter works followed in 1950, all of them written by Hamilton for Startling Stories. In the late sixties, Popular Library reprinted thirteen of the Captain’s adventures in paperback. Specialty publisher Haffner Press is currently collecting the entire series in hardcover.

Captain Future has proved very popular throughout the world with an animated television series being produced in Japan and exported to other nations. Additionally, there have been hundreds of comic books featuring the characters published in both French and German. Captain Future figurines, models, board games, drinking glasses, and other merchandise have also appeared.

Frederik Pohl & Fictioneers, Inc.

Astonishing Stories 40-02In October 1939, acting on a tip that Popular Publications was starting a new pulp line, a young author and literary agent found himself trying to convince the company to hire him to start a pair of science-fiction pulps. Soon thereafter, the freshly hired editor was seated with publisher Harry Steeger, discussing the financial needs of the company’s brand new science-fiction magazines.

Frederik Pohl was a month shy of his twentieth birthday when he went to work for Fictioneers, Inc., the name given to Popular’s off-brand line of pulp magazines that paid its authors and artists cut-rate prices. Armed with six-hundred dollars to fill two magazines with science fiction stories, Pohl turned to the members of The Futurians, a science-fiction fan club he had helped to found. It included Isaac Asimov, Cyril Kornbluth, Robert Lowndes, Donald Wollheim, and other fans who wanted to become professional science-fiction writers.

Published in alternating months, Astonishing Stories and its companion, Super Science Stories, also included stories cast-offs from John Campbell’s Astounding Science-Fiction, including work by Cleve Cartmill, L. Sprague DeCamp, Robert A. Heinlein, L. Ron Hubbard, Ross Rocklynne, and Clifford Simak. There were also tales from the Thursday Afternoon Luncheon Club, a group of writing professionals that included Malcolm Jameson, Henry Kuttner, and Manly Wade Wellman. Of course, there was Pohl himself, supplementing his ten-dollar weekly paycheck from Popular by writing stories using the pseudonym of James MacCreigh, as well as work from new writers such as Ray Bradbury and Bob Tucker. Finally, Pohl found it hard to reject Ray Cummings, the old-timer who penned “The Girl in the Golden Atom” ad infinitum.

Super Science Stories 40-03Astonishing Stories and Super Science Stories continued for about three years. In 1943, Popular dropped a number of its pulps including its  two Fictioneer science-fiction magazines. The paper saved was used for their better-selling titles like Adventure, Argosy, Black Mask, Dime Detective, and the love and western magazines. After World War II, Super Science Stories was revived for fifteen more issues. It helped pave the way for the new approaches to science-fiction storytelling being developed in magazines such as Galaxy Science Fiction and The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction.

To Infinity and Beyond

Comet 1940-12A lengthy period of contraction followed the science-fiction and fantasy pulp boom of 1939. With the United States about to enter World War II and paper rationing limiting magazine production, the only new magazines to appear before the conflict’s end were the short-livedComet, Cosmic Stories and Stirring Science Stories, plus rebound copies of Amazing Stories and Fantastic Adventures.

A British magazine entitled New Worlds was the first newscience-fiction magazine to appear following World War II. Although it first appeared in 1946, it didn’t come into its glory until Michael Moorcock became editor in 1964. New Worldswould run for 222 issues and become the focus of science fiction’s “New Wave.” A companion magazine, Science Fantasy(later titled Impulse), premiered in 1950.

F&SF 49-FThe first U. S. magazine to appear after the war was Avon Fantasy Reader. Edited by Donald A. Wollheim, it was primarily a reprint magazine. The first new fantastic magazine would wait until 1949 when The Magazine of Fantasy–the “and Science Fiction” was added later–premiered in the fall. Originally edited by Anthony Boucher and J. Francis McComas and published by Lawrence Spivak, its founders sought to move away from pulp concepts, asking its writers for stylish fiction “that was up to the literary standards of the slick magazines.” Still published today, F&SF–as it has become known–has greatly helped both science fiction and fantasy to mature as genres. It is still published today.

Ray Palmer, most remembered today for his trumpeting of the Shaver Mystery in Amazing Stories and Fantastic Adventures, began publishing a couple of fantastic magazines around 1950. Although his first, Other Worlds, would publish a number of top-notch stories by Ray Bradbury, Gordon Dickson, Wilson Tucker, and others, Palmer would eventually convert it into a magazine about flying saucers. His other magazine was Imagination. It was sold to another publisher following its second number. Lasting for over sixty issues,Imagination published hurriedly written hack fiction by Randall Garrett, John Jakes, Frank M. Robinson and Robert Silverberg, all hiding behind pseudonyms.

Galaxy 50-10In the fall of 1950, World Editions introduced Galaxy Science Fiction, a digest magazine that paid its authors a minimum of three cents a word. Edited by H. L. Gold, the magazine serialized Alfred Bester’s “The Demolished Man” and Robert A. Heinlein’s “The Puppet Masters,” and published shorter works such as Ray Bradbury’s “The Fireman” (later expanded to become Fahrenheit 451), Damon Knight’s “To Serve Man,” and Fritz Leiber’s “Coming Attraction,” all in its first year. In 1953, Galaxy shared the first Hugo for Best Magazine with Campbell’s Analog. Later edited by Frederik Pohl, Jim Baen, and others, Galaxy ran for a total of 254 issues with its final issue appearing in 1980. Like F&SF, Galaxy was a leader in the movement to bring a more human element to science fiction.

Given the success of The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction and Galaxy Science Fiction, other publishers tried to cash in on the growing market. Most of them quickly folded. Some of the more notable magazines introduced during the fifites included If—particularly when it was edited by Frederik Pohl; Nebula Science Fiction—a Scottish magazine; Fantastic—started by Howard Browne for Ziff-Davis; Fantastic Universe—nicknamed “the poor man’s” F&SFBeyond Fantasy Fiction—a short-lived fantasy companion to Galaxy Science Fiction; andImaginative Tales—a companion to Imagination.

Inifinity 55-11At the dawn of the space race, ten new science-fiction magazines entered the market. The best was Infinity Science Fiction. Edited by Larry Shaw, it published some good stories by authors such as Isaac Asimov, James Blish, Arthur C. Clarke, Damon Knight and C. M. Kornbluth. Other longer-lived magazines to premier during this time included Infinity Science Fiction, Satellite Science Fiction, and Super-Science Fiction. Although nearly fifty British and American science-fiction and fantasy magazines were introduced during the fifties, only four of the fifty–Galaxy Science FictionScience Fantasy, If, and Fantastic—lasted beyond 1960.

Omni 78-10Although science fiction continued to mature after 1960, the genre increasingly turned to low-priced and portable paperback books to extend its reach. Except for the reprint digests—Magazine of Horror and Startling Mystery Stories—little of note appeared in the form of a new magazine untilIsaac Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine debuted in the spring of 1977. Still running today, it will soon publish its 463rd issue. Other notable magazines from the last quarter of the twentieth century are Omni—a slick companion toPenthouse that sometimes topped a million in circulation and published science articles alongside science-fiction stories; Rod Serling’s The Twilight Zone Magazine—a companion to the men’s magazine Gallery, it sometimes sold more than 125,000 copies and featured a mix of traditional supernatural fiction and movie and television features; Interzone—a British magazine started in the spring of 1982 and originally modeled after Michael Moorcock’s New Worlds, it continues to be published today; Aboriginal Science Fiction—a magazine that debuted in 1986 and published many new writers; and Absolute Magnitude(originally entitled Harsh Mistress)—a semiprofessional magazine that debuted in the spring of 1993 and published “hard science fiction with a strong human element.”

Asimov's Science Fiction 2014-08Today, science fiction and fantasy have, by and large, achieved the respectability they long sought. At the same time, competition from a range of media including paperback books, movies, television, video games, e-books, and the Internet, has vastly diminished the scope of magazine fantasy and science fiction. The major science-fiction and fantasy magazines in the print format–Analog Science Fiction and Fact,Asimov’s Science Fiction MagazineInterzone, and The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction–have seen their circulations shrink tremendously.  Nevertheless, it cannot be denied that contemporary science fiction and fantasy owe a great deal to the magazines of the past—The Strand, Pearson’s Magazine, Argosy, The All-Story, Weird Tales, Amazing Stories, Astounding Science-Fiction, Galaxy Science Fiction, and countless others. Without them, where would science fiction and fantasy be today?

The cover for Asimov’s Science Fiction is copyright © 2014 by Penny Publications LLC/Dell Magazines.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this discussion of magazine science fiction. If you’d like to read the unabridged version of the article–entitled “Science Fiction and the Pulps: A Genre Evolves”–it appears in the PulpFest 2014 program book, The Pulpster, given free to all members of the convention. If copies are still available after the conclusion of the convention–quantities are limited–you can purchase one from Mike Chomko, Books. Visit our program book page to learn how to place your order.

**** - Survey - ****

2014/01/29


Marvel Science 39-04-05PulpFest 
needs your help. We’re looking for your ideas on how to improve the convention. Whether or not you have attended PulpFest in the past or if you are planning to attend in 2014, we’d love to hear from you. Please take a few minutes to fill out the survey that you’ll find below. We’re looking for suggestions on how to improve your PulpFest. Of course, your responses will be held strictly confidential.

Regular members, dealers, and even people who have never attended PulpFest can participate in our poll. As a way to thank our everyone who responds, we’ll be offering three free memberships to PulpFest 2014, each valued at $30! All you have to do for a chance to win a free membership is  complete the survey and provide your name and contact information in the space provided on the form.

For your friends who don’t have Internet access, we’ll also be providing our poll with the newsletter and registration forms that will go out shortly to those on our mailing list. To be sure to receive one, please send your name and mailing address to Jack Cullers at 1272 Cheatham Way, Bellbrook, OH 45305 or via email at jack@pulpfest.com. Be sure to tell your friends.

Our three winners will be selected in a random drawing to be held on Friday, July 4th. Thanks very much for your help.

 

 

**** - 2013 Dealers - ****

2013/08/13

Thank you to the following exhibitors who filled our dealers’ room at the Hyatt Regency Columbus with collectible pulp magazines and digests, vintage paperbacks, first edition hardcovers and series books, original art, B-movies and serials, collectible comic books, and more. Many of them will be returning to Columbus for PulpFest 2014. Please support them with your business.

Adventure House/John Gunnison

G-8-33-10John Gunnison will be offering his usual extensive stock of pulp magazines as well as High Adventure, G-8, and the many pulp replicas and collections he has published under the Adventure House banner. For more info, please visit http://adventurehouse.com/.

Adventures in Bronze/Will Murray

Adv. in BronzeThe author of more than fifty books, Will plans to offer copies of all six volumes from his The All-New Wild Adventures of Doc Savage, as well as Writings in Bronze, a collection of his Doc Savage non-fiction. His monumental history of the pulp Western magazines, Wordslingers, debuts at Pulpfest.

Age of Aces/Bill Mann & the Kalb Brothers

RedFalcon_Vol3_cover.inddPublishers of the best-selling The Spider vs. the Empire State, Bill and Chris and David Kalb will have their line of pulp reprints at PulpFest. From Smoke Wade to Captain Philip Strange, look to Age of Aces for the best in pulp fiction. Learn more by visiting Ages of Aces online.

Airship 27/Ron Fortier & Rob Davis

Airship 27Headed by Ron Fortier and Rob Davis, Airship 27 is a leading producer of new pulp fiction. Starring the classic heroes of yesteryear–from The Black Bat and Sherlock Holmes to Ki-Gor and The Green Lama–you’ll find plenty of thrills by visiting their Online Hangar.

Jim and Walter Albert

AlbertThese collecting brothers from Arkansas and Pennsylvania will have pulps, paperbacks, hardcovers, fanzines, and much more at their PulpFest 2013 table. You’re bound to find excellent values on some terrific items from the Albert Boys. So be sure to pay a visit to their table.

Battered Silicon/George Vanderburgh

BSDBGeorge has published over 600 books, including a wide variety of detective fiction and Sherlock Holmes scholarship as well as his Lost Treasures of the Pulps series that reprints many highly regarded pulp classics. His website is at www.batteredbox.com/.

BEB Books/Brian Earl Brown

Thrill Book 1919-03-01Brian will have his line of inexpensive pulp reprints of difficult to find stories from Argosy All-Story Weekly, The Thrill Book, and other rare or very expensive pulp magazines. And as the official editor of PEAPS, the Pulp Era Amateur Press Society, he will also be selling back numbers of the group’s quarterly mailings.

Camille Cazedessus, Jr.

CazedessusAlthough Hugo Award winner Camille Cazedessus will not be able to attend PulpFest 2013, he has asked Mike Chomko, Books to represent him at this year’s convention. Mike will be selling a run of All-Story Weekly from 1916-17 as well as a selection of books and pulps. He’ll also have Pulpdom CD’s for sale.

Mike Chomko, Books

Our 2010 Chomko Munsey winner Mike Chomko will be representing Altus Press at PulpFest 2013. He’ll also be premiering Stark House’s Paperback Confidential: Crime Writers of the Paperback Era. Please visit the Mike Chomko Books website and download a copy of his latest catalog.

Jack Cullers

CullersIf you’re looking for pulps and out-of-print paperbacks, pulp reprints or hardbound fiction and non-fiction, find your way to Jack’s table. He always has a wide variety of such material at reasonable prices. You may just come across something you’ve been questing after for years.

Curious Bookshop/Ray Walsh

Collier's, 04-01-39Ray will be offering a broad array of paper collectibles–pulps, paperbacks, original artwork, collectible hardcovers, vintage comic books, and more. He’ll be bringing it all from East Lansing, Michigan, home to the Curious Book Shop and Classicon for more than forty years.

Dark Star Books/Gary Diedriech

Dark StarA used and new book store that also sells pulps and comic books, located about an hour from Columbus in picturesque Yellow Springs, Ohio, Dark Star will be offering a variety of material including pulps, digests, Big Little Books, and collectible hardcovers and paperbacks.

Dave’s Comic Vault/David White

Dave's Comic VaultLocated in suburban Chicago, Dave has been collecting for nearly forty years and selling since 2006, mostly through ebay. At PulpFest he will have science-fiction pulps as well as some hero and horror. Dave’s Comic Vault will also have fanzines, paperbacks, digests, and pulp reprints.

Dearly Departed Books/S. & L. Edwards

Dearly DepartedLongtime Ohio booksellers Scott and Linda Edwards will have numerous Sax Rohmer hardcovers, including several dust-jacketed and first American & British editions. Their specialty is pulp, paperback, and first edition genre fiction. Learn more by visiting Dearly Departed Books.

Doug Ellis and Deb Fulton

Doug EllisTwo of the founders of the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention, Doug and Deb will be offering a wide selection of general fiction, science-fiction and other pulps as well as original art and other collectibles. They’ll also have copies of Pulp Vault #14, the longest pulp fanzine ever published.

Fantasy Publishing/Dick & Norma Enos

Fantasy PubFantasy Publishing will be selling the “new pulp” adventures of Rick Steele, ace trouble buster from the fifties. A former test pilot with a trio of “ace” assistants, Rick will go anywhere in search of adventure. Visit the Dick Enos site on Amazon.com for more info and meet Dick & Norma at PulpFest.

Bob Flowers

Nick Carter 33-03This good-natured collector from Illinois usually has a little bit of everything including pulps, paperbacks, fanzines, and related material. His offerings come from a wide range of genres–hero, detective, adventure, science fiction, and Western. Shop with Bob for variety.

Thomas Gianni

Fists of IronHailing from the Windy City, Tom is a graduate of the American Academy of Art. Employed as a courtroom sketch artist, Gianni has also created dust jackets for the Robert E. Howard Foundation and is currently illustrating The Beasts of Tarzan for Homeworld Press. You can learn more about him by visiting Thomas Gianni Art.

Girasol Collectables

spider1The sponsor of Canada’s annual Fantastic Pulps Show & Sale, Girasol will be selling pulp magazines, their own line of high-quality pulp replicas, books about pulps, and other related items. To browse their impressive assortment of offerings and learn more about their pulp show, please visit their website at Girasol Collectables.

Martin Grams

GramsA widely published old time radio and television expert, Martin carries a large selection of classic DVDs, along with books and magazines. He’ll also have copies of his bestselling books for sale–The Shadow: The History and Mystery of the Radio Program, his popular culture studies of The Green Hornet and The Twilight Zone, and more.

Jonathan and Larry “Doc” Grubb

GrubbPulpFest welcomes Doc Grubb, a collector since the 1960s, and his son, Jonathan, back for a second go-round. They’ll have many first editions, pulp fanzines, and reprints of various authors, all at great prices. Jonathan and Larry Grubb hail from Maryland. We’re very glad to have them back.

Art Hackathorn

Pete Rice 33-11A specialist in detective and Western pulps, Art will also have some collectible hardcovers and paperbacks at his tables. He’ll also be carrying some digests from the mystery and Western fields. Art is one of the leading dealers in these fiction genres.

Mark Halegua

phantom1This personable dealer from Queens is the founder of the Gotham Pulp Collectors Club. In addition to selling a selection of pulp magazines, Mark will be offering his Pulps 1st CDs featuring thousands of pulp cover images on each disc. He’s also the creator of “new pulp” hero The Red Badge and other new pulp fiction.

Rick Hall

Scouring flea markets and antique shows up and down the East Coast, Rick rescues pulps for the collections of his fellows in the pulp community. From Ace Detective to Zoom and everything in between, you may find the pulp you’ve long been hunting amongst Rick’s “found” pulps.

Heartwood Auctions/Richard & Frieda

Shadow33-08-01With more 25 years experience in vintage pulps, first editions, magazines, paperbacks, and other collectibles, Heartwood Auctions has the largest inventory available for sale. Now featuring the impressive Robert Weinberg collection of rare pulps, digests, paperbacks and related ephemera.

Paul Herman

This Connecticut dealer and collector exhibits at many pulp and paperback conventions. He offers a wide variety of material including pulps, paperbacks, and vintage digests. He is very strong in the mystery and detective fields, turning up many scarce items.

Mark Hickman

HickmanThis Ohio dealer will be offering a variety of science-fiction magazines and hero pulps, as well as comic books and original artwork from pulps, comics, digests, and paperbacks–a little bit of everything. Mark will also be selling copies of The Collected Pulp Era, Volume 1, a book reprinting the early issues of his father’s classic fanzine.

John McMahan

McMahanJohn hails from Oklahoma where he has long been active as a fan and dealer. At PulpFest 2013, he’ll be selling pulps, books, comics, original art, movie posters, and more. He’ll also have copies of Hard-Boiled Christmas Stories, the anthology he edited with John Wooley. John sells paper collectibles on ebay as mybckpages.

Thomas Martin

Coming from western Ohio, Tom will be selling detective, hero, and science-fiction pulps; an extensive selection of crime digests such as Guilty, Off Beat, and Trapped; and a wide assortment of collectible and reader paperbacks, hardcovers, film magazines, and other popular culture material.

Walker Martin

Collecting since the early days of pulp fandom, Walker has owned practically every pulp at least once. A resident of New Jersey, he’ll be selling pulps–including many 1930s issues of Western Story Magazine–original artwork, and one-of-a- kind canceled checks from the files of Munsey and Popular Publications.

Bill Maynard

Dr. Fu Manchu was “…the yellow peril incarnate in one man…” and William Patrick Maynard is the author of the first authorized Fu Manchu thrillers in over twenty years. He will be selling and signing copies of The Terror of Fu Manchu and The Destiny of Fu Manchu, and some pulp-related collectibles.

Meteor House/Michael Croteau

HALFarmerCon celebrates 80 years of Doc Savage with the release of the definitive edition of Philip José Farmer’s Doc Savage: His Apocalyptic Life and Win Scott Eckert’s The Scarlet Jaguar. Meteor House will also have items from Farmer’s estate sale, the latest Farmer works from Titan Books, plus works by FarmerCon attendees.

Murania Press/Ed Hulse

HulseIn addition to the latest issue of his award-winning fanzine Blood ‘n’ Thunder, Ed will be premiering the new Blood ‘n’ Thunder Guide to Pulp Fiction and at least one new volume in his Classic Pulp Reprints series at the convention. He also have his usual smattering of high-grade pulp magazines.

Musa Publishing/Celina Summers

MusaCelina is the editorial director of Musa Publishing, a digital publishing house that is home to the work of early American science-fiction pioneer Homer Eon Flint, best known for his collaboration with Austin Hall, The Blind Spot, originally serialized in Argosy All-Story Weekly in 1921. This will be Celina’s first PulpFest.

Phil & Holly Nelson

Top-Notch 33-05This personable dealer and his daughter, both from Waverly, Ohio, will be armed with a wide variety of pulps, from Argosy and Detective Fiction Weekly to Doc Savage and Planet Stories. He’ll also have paperbacks, comics and other items. He’s a fan of North-West Stories, Top-Notch, and detective fiction.

Craig Poole

A resident of Virginia, Craig has been attending pulp conventions for years. He will have several pieces of vintage original cover art, representing a mix of genres, but with science fiction the main focus. He will have paperback cover art and, perhaps, a few digest or pulp cover paintings.

Laurie Powers

Powers This California resident, creator of the Laurie’s Wild West blog, will be selling copies of Hidden Ghosts–a collection of her grandfather Paul Powers’ pulp fiction that will be debuting at PulpFest–and other books by her grandfather. Laurie is currently writing a biography of Daisy Bacon, editor of Love Story Magazine.

Joseph Saine

SainesA full-time proprietor of an  antique toy shop by day and a mystery mavin by night, Joe does one show a year and PulpFest is it! Hailing from northwest Ohio, among Joe’s treasures will be a fresh harvest of pulps,  Big Little Books, vintage crime and adventure comics, quality paperbacks, and a group of paintings.

Sanctum Books/Anthony Tollin

Doc Savage33-03Our 2011 Munsey Award winner will be selling all of his Sanctum Books pulp reprints–The Avenger, Doc Savage, Nick Carter, The Shadow, The Spider and The Whisperer–six of the greatest pulp heroes in one of the best formats imaginable. He’ll also have preliminary pulp original artwork from George and Jerome Rozen and more!

David Saunders

The creator of the Munsey, pulp art expert David will be selling signed copies of his biographies of pulp artists, including his father, Norman Saunders, and Spicy artist H. J. Ward. Visit David’s website at www.pulpartists.com for brief, illustrated biographies of many pulp artists.

Tom Skemp

SkempSpecializing in horror and science fiction, Tom is a resident of Latrobe, Pennsylvania. He will be selling collectible hardcovers and a wide variety of paperbacks as well as some limited and British editions. Check out his table for some chills and thrills and some great finds.

Tim’s Books/Tim Paxton

PaxtonTim Paxton of Grand Rapids, Michigan specializes in paperbacks and small press, first edition hardcovers, dealing mainly in high-grade science fiction, fantasy, and horror as well as mysteries and pulp-related material. Check out the Tim’s Books website at AbeBooks.com.

Barry Traylor

Weird Tales 47-05Although he won’t have a table at the convention, Barry is the “go-to” guy when it comes to the PulpFest auctions. If you have any questions concerning our auctions, please write to barry@pulpfest.com or visit the “Auctions” page under “Programming.” Barry loves Halloween and Weird Tales.

William Trible

Adventure35-01 Please extend a hearty welcome to this first-time PulpFest dealer from Virginia. Bill will be bringing a selection of Adventure Magazine, plus detective and Western pulps, paperbacks, true crime books, and mystery novels. He’s also very strong in American history books, particularly from the 1930s, the pulp hero era.

Randy Vanderbeek

Lone Eagle 33-09A pulp collector for about forty years, Randy is from Kalamazoo, Michigan. She will be bringing hundreds of pulp magazines from all genres for sale or trade. Of course, the more she sells, the more she’ll be able to buy from the many fine dealers who will be attending PulpFest 2013.

Jon Wehler

WhelerThis personable dealer and collector offers pulps, original art, and other paper collectibles. He’ll also have lots of vintage paperbacks from many different genres. Based in Ohio, he exhibits at a variety of book and paper shows throughout the Midwest. And he’s a nice guy.

Chuck Welch

Chuck helps to manage our website and social media outlets like our Twitter account. He’ll be offering information about the social media aspect of Pulpfest–the website and other online methods we use to promote the festival. Check out Chuck’s Hidalgo Trading Company.

White Rocket Books/Van Plexico

White RocketAlong with Airship 27 and Pro Se Press, White Rocket Books is one of the leading publishers of new pulp fiction novels and anthologies. Its publisher, Van Plexico, has worked on over 25 new pulp books as a writer, editor, book designer, or contributor. Please welcome Van to PulpFest.

Plus a number of dealers who asked not to be listed on this page.

**** - 2013 Munsey Nominees - ****

2013/08/13

There were thirteen nominating petitions for the 2013 Munsey Award that met the criteria for the award. In the interest of manageability, the final ballot was pared down to include those individuals who had received the most nominations. Many thanks from the PulpFest organizing committee to all who participated in the nominating process. No nominations were received for the Rusty Hevelin Service Award. Please visit our Awards page for the criteria used for our service awards.

The final voting ballot was forwarded to the past winners of the Munsey, Lamont, and Rusty Hevelin Service Awards who then selected the person to be honored. The 2013 Munsey Award was presented to Garyn G. Roberts during Saturday evening’s programming on July 27th, 2013.

Congratulations to all the nominees for the 2013 Munsey.

Charles Ardai

Ardai Munsey ImageWinner of the Edgar Allan Poe Award and the Shamus Award for his own crime fiction, Charles is one of the founders of Hard Case Crime, a publisher dedicated to reviving the vigor and excitement, the suspense and thrills, the sheer entertainment of the golden age of paperback crime novels, both by bringing back into print the best work of the pulp era and by introducing readers to new work by some of today’s most powerful writers and artists. Since its founding in 2004, Hard Case Crime has published lost manuscripts by top authors like Mickey Spillane, Lester Dent, and James M. Cain; works left buried for decades in pulp magazines, crime digests, and paperback originals written by Lawrence Block, David Goodis, Steve Fisher, Harlan Ellison and others; and exciting new works by authors such as Domenic Strawberry, Christa Faust, Max Phillips, and Ardai himself, written in the hard-boiled or noir style pioneered in the pulps and paperback originals. To top things off, the covers created for the Hard Case Crime line are done in the pulp style by artists such as Robert McGinnis and Glen Orbik. “Ardai’s Hard Case Crime series serves as a gateway for new readers to discover the great and varied works found in the old pulps, digests, and paperback originals of the 20th century.”

J. Randolph Cox

For more than 45 years, Randy has conducted research into pulp magazines and dime novels. He served as the editor-publisher of Dime Novel Round-Up for over twenty years. His bibliography, Man of Magic & Mystery: A Guide to the Work of Walter B. Gibson, is an excellent resource for those seeking greater understanding of the work of the man who created The Shadow. With David S. Siegel, Randy authored Flashgun Casey: Crime Photographer, a book-length study of the character originally created for Black Mask by George Harmon Coxe. Other books he has authored include Masters of Mystery and Detective Fiction: An Annotated Bibliography and The Dime Novel Companion: A Source Book. Randy has donated his collection of comic books and newspaper strips fanzines, pulps, series books, story papers, and other materials to the University of Minnesota Libraries and his extensive collection of Walter Gibson books and Shadow pulps and comics to Gibson’s alma mater, Colgate University.

Stephen T. Miller

Steve has been helping to index the pulps for years. Along with Michael Cook, he compiled Garland Publishing’s Mystery, Detective, and Espionage Fiction: A Checklist of Fiction in U. S. Pulp Magazines, 1915-1974, an exceptional resource for collectors of not only detective pulps, but also hero and some adventure magazines. With Phil Stephensen-Payne and William G. Contento, Steve recently revised this classic index, issued on CD-ROM by Locus Press as Crime, Mystery and Gangster Fiction Magazine Index, 1915-2010. Together with Bill Contento, Steve also compiled Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Weird Fiction Magazine Index (1890-2006), a guide to more than 900 different magazines, published on CD-ROM by Locus Press and updated periodically by the publisher. Over the years, Steve has also helped many different people with pulp-related research, sharing his knowledge as well as his collection with them.

Laurie Powers

The granddaughter of pulp author Paul S. Powers, Laurie was introduced to the pulp community in 2007 through the publication of Pulp Writer: Twenty Years in the American Grub Street, an autobiography and appreciation of her grandfather. Later that same year, she started Laurie’s Wild West, an Internet blog site that has become a favorite destination for those interested in the pulps. She has published articles on “Who Read the Pulps?,” female pulp writers, a series of articles put together by various pulp fans entitled “My Favorite Pulps,” and more. Although relatively new to the world of pulps, Laurie has shown tremendous support for the community by spreading the word about pulp fiction and publicizing the conventions that salute our wonderful hobby. She is currently working on a biography of pulp editor Daisy Bacon, editor of Love Story Magazine.

Garyn Roberts (winner 2013 Munsey Award)

Professor Roberts has worked in the field of higher education for many years, teaching English and popular culture studies. He is also an unabashed fan of the pulps. Garyn has written extensively about the pulps, both professionally and as a fan. He has edited or co-edited some of the best collections from the pulps including A Cent a Story: The Best from Ten Detective Aces, More Tales of the Defective Detective in the Pulps, The Compleat Adventures of the Moon Man, The Magical Mysteries of Don Diavolo, and The Compleat Great Merlini Saga. His insightful essays in these books and elsewhere have led to a greater understanding of the pulps both inside and outside of the pulp community. His collection, The Prentice Hall Anthology of Science Fiction and Fantasy, a college level textbook, is notable for the attention paid to the pulp magazines. Additionally, Garyn has helped other researchers with various pulp-related projects and is a regular attendee of pulp conventions where he often serves as a presenter and panelist.

J. Barry Traylor

BatgirlRichard Wentworth, AKA The Spider, had his Ram Singh; G-8 turned to Nippy Weston and Bull Martin for help; and Doc Savage had Monk, Ham, and three other geniuses to lend a hand. But who does a pulp con organizer turn to for assistance? None other than J. Barry Traylor! For over twenty-five years, Barry has been organizing convention auctions, almost single-handedly pulling together a couple hundred lots for a Saturday auction. In 2008, Barry quickly mastered the art of digital photography and stunned the convention crowd with his wonderful images of pulps ranging from rarities like Far East Adventure Stories to more common titles such as Amazing Stories. He’s also the person most often performing the “grunt work” that goes into organizing a convention–contacting comic shops and book stores to help with promotion activities; managing the links on the PulpFest website; hunting down extension cords for use in the dealers’ room and programming area; and much more. A longtime contributor to letter columns–you can find his comments in Age of the Unicorn, Echoes, Xenophile, and other classic fanzines–this unsung hero is a devoted fan of Weird Tales. Barry learned about giving back to the pulp community from his pulp mentor, the late Richard Minter, co-winner of the 1993 Lamont Award.

George Vanderburgh

Through his Battered Silicon Dispatch Box, George has published over 600 books, many of them directly related to the pulps. He was largely responsible for finally getting all of Fred Davis’ classic Moon Man stories back into print. And what about his Peter the Brazen series, his five volumes featuring the work of Seabury Quinn, The Compleat Adventures of the Park Avenue Hunt Club, his Green Ghost set, The Compleat Saga of John Solomon, The Adventures of the Golden Amazon, and The Compleat Adventures of the Suicide Squad? He has also given us numerous collections of detective fiction, including volumes featuring the Thinking Machine, Dr. Thorndyke and Martin Hewitt. Looking at his website, his future plans include several books reprinting pulp authors who have been unjustly forgotten. Along with Robert Weinberg, George served as the co-editor of Arkham House until the death of April Derleth. A regular attendee of pulp conventions, George has helped both longtime and new fans to collect the tales of some of the most fantastic heroes from the pulps.

Dan Zimmer

For many years, Dan has been working to promote greater awareness of pulp artists by producing and distributing Illustration Magazine. He has tirelessly contributed his time, expertise and his personal wealth to promote a more respectful awareness of the artistic accomplishments of pulp artists through the deluxe publication of the many biographical articles on pulp artists that have appeared in his magazine, distributed around the globe. He has done this despite the overwhelming fact that his creative vision is far beyond receiving any reasonable economic return for his efforts. Dan’s devotion to classic American illustrators is manifest in the elegant presentation of his magazine and has helped to turn the tide in our culture’s growing appreciation of pulp art. Additionally, he has supported the pulp community by drawing his readers’ attention to various pulp conventions, including the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention, Pulpcon, and PulpFest. Dan has also served as the sponsor of Windy City’s annual pulp art exhibit and created the limited edition print of David Saunder’s Munsey Award painting without cost to the PulpFest organizing committee.

Other Nominees

Also nominated were William G. Contento, indexer and organizer of the online FictionMags Index; Chris Kalb, art designer for a number of pulp reprint publishers, including Age of Aces Books and Murania Press, as well as the designer of the PulpFest website; Phil Stephensen-Payne, a prolific bibliographer and pulp researcher based in the United Kingdom whose Galactic Central website contains an online checklist of pulp magazines that is attempting to include the cover to every pulp ever published; Celina Summers, editorial director of Musa Publishing, a digital publishing house that is home to the work of American science-fiction pioneer Homer Eon Flint; and Howard Wright, editor and publisher of The Bronze Gazette, the long-running Doc Savage fanzine. John DeWalt, longtime PEAPS member and author of Keys to Other Doors, also received several votes during the process. Again, congratulations to all of the nominees.

**** - Promotional Items - ****

2013/08/13

A big part of PulpFest 2013’s success was due to its promotional materials, all designed by Chris Kalb. Below you’ll find PDFs of our 2013 logo, the front and back of the promotional post card distributed at book fairs, comic shows, science-fiction conventions, and the like, and our full-page flyer, used to promote our convention at bookstores, comic shops, and other retail establishments. To download any of these files, please click on its image.

 PulpFest 2013 Front

PulpFest 2013 Back

PulpFest 2013 Flyer

Walter M. Baumhofer was the artist responsible for the Doc Savage portrait, used for the front cover of the first issue of Doc Savage Magazine, dated March 1933. The depiction of The Spider was rendered by Raphael De Soto for the November 1941 issue of the Popular Publications pulp. As always, many thanks to Chris Kalb for designing and creating our 2013 PulpFest advertising.

For questions about promoting PulpFest 2013 or about our website, please contact Mike Chomko at mike@pulpfest.com. Thank you for helping to promote the summer’s great pulp con.

**** - PulpFest 2013 Blogroll - ****

2013/08/13

Following is a play-by-play look at the creation of PulpFest 2013, told through the posts that originally appeared on the convention’s home page during 2012 and 2013. They began in September 2012, soon after the organizing committee started to plan, arrange, and promote the 2013 convention–what many have termed the “best PulpFest of them all!”

PulpFest 2013 Plans Are Underway!

Sept. 27, 2012–The PulpFest committee is delighted to announce that our 2013 convention will once again be held at the Hyatt Regency hotel in downtown Columbus, Ohio. Our 2013 confab will take place from Thursday, July 25th, through Sunday, July 28th. It will boast the same combination of product and programming that has made PulpFest the must-attend annual event for fans, scholars, and collectors of pulp fiction.

Two very important anniversaries will figure prominently in PulpFest’s 2013 programming. First and foremost, we are celebrating the hero pulp revolution that began 80 years ago in 1933, with the debuts of such popular figures as Doc Savage, The Spider, Nick Carter, Pete Rice, The Lone Eagle, The Phantom Detective, and G-8 and His Battle Aces. The success of Street & Smith’s Shadow pulp, launched two years earlier, spurred this revival of single-character magazines, which had been a phenomenon of the dime-novel era. The hero pulps revitalized an industry laid low by the Great Depression, and they dominated the rough-paper field for the rest of the decade. They remain the most avidly collected and frequently reprinted periodicals in the hobby.

We’ll also acknowledge the centennial of Sax Rohmer’s Dr. Fu Manchu, who made his American bow in a February 1913 issue of Collier’s Magazine. The initial cycle of short stories was published between hard covers later that year as The Insidious Dr. Fu Manchu. The first and greatest “Yellow Peril” villain, Rohmer’s Devil Doctor was widely imitated in American pop culture; rough-paper knockoffs included The Mysterious Wu Fang and Dr. Yen Sin, two short-lived pulps from Popular Publications.

With so many possibilities for panels and presentations, the PulpFest committee once again plans to offer a full night of programming on Thursday, before the convention’s “official” opening on Friday, so attendees are urged to make early arrival a part of their PulpFest travel plans.

The Hyatt Regency has asked for a modest increase in guest-room rates, which will be $112 per night as opposed to the $109 we paid this year.  However, to reward loyal attendees who support the convention by staying at the host hotel, PulpFest is happy to be able to offer a ten-dollar rebate redeemable at the registration desk. This will cover the three-dollar nightly increase incurred by Hyatt guests.

We are also happy to once again supply a third table free of charge to exhibitors who stay at the Hyatt and rent two tables in our hucksters’ room. That’s three tables for the price of two, or six for the price of four. The massive size of the Regency Ballroom enables us to provide this extra exhibit space to loyal PulpFest dealers, for whose continued support we are most grateful. Remember, though, this special offer is good only to dealers staying at the host hotel.

Although the 2013 convention is still ten months away, you can rest assured that the committee is already hard at work on planning and promotion. Ideas for panels and presentations have already been proposed and, as always, we remain open to programming suggestions and volunteer presenters. Most importantly, though, we wanted to let you know that our venue is confirmed. So start saving for the next PulpFest right away and check back periodically for updates.

Happy Holidays from PulpFest

Dec. 22, 2012–Here’s wishing everyone the happiest of holiday seasons. As we near 2013 and the eightieth anniversary of the “hero pulp explosion,” when characters such as Doc Savage, G-8, The Spider, and The Phantom Detective were introduced to the reading public, let’s hope there’s a copy of your favorite pulp magazine tucked into Santa’s sack to help tide you over until April 12th, when the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention will begin in the Chicago area.

After you’ve finished celebrating the winter holidays, please stop back at the PulpFest website as we gear up for next Summer’s Great Pulp Con. Better still, sign up for our email updates by filling in the little gray box titled “E-Mail List” right here on our home page. And while you’re at it, why not “like” our facebook page as more than 500 others have done. You can also follow PulpFest on Twitter.

Many thanks to Keith “Kez” Wilson for allowing us to use his Rescuing Rudolph fantasy Doc Savage cover, based on James Bama’s painting for the Bantam edition of Quest of Qui. You can see more of Kez’s great cover spoofs at his Doc Savage Fantasy Cover Gallery.

Celebrating the Pulp Heroes of 1933

PulpFest 2013 FrontJan. 23, 2013–Eighty years ago, following the great success of The Shadow, the pulp industry exploded with eight new single-character magazines. The Phantom Detective, Doc Savage, Nick Carter, The Lone Eagle, G-8 and His Battle Aces, The Spider, and Pete Rice all debuted in their own magazines in the glorious year of 1933. Join PulpFest on Thursday, July 25th as we begin our celebration of “Doc Savage and the Pulp Heroes of 1933.”

Enter the Phantom

phantom1Jan. 29, 2013–In 1933, Franklin Delano Roosevelt was inaugurated the 32nd president of the United States of America, proclaiming that “We have nothing to fear but fear itself.” Adolph Hitler was named the Chancellor of Germany, amid promises of a parliamentary democracy. San Francisco broke ground for the construction of the Golden Gate Bridge. King Kong premiered in New York City and the hero pulp revolution began.

The tremendous success of Street & Smith’s The Shadow Magazine prompted the return of the single-character periodical. The first of these hero pulps was The Phantom Detective. Launched by Ned Pines’ Thrilling Group, the Phantom was the alter ego of man-about-town Richard Curtis Van Loan. A veteran of the first world war, this moneyed playboy was bored with life until a family friend recommended he “try his hand at solving a mysterious crime which had stumped the police.” His initial success led Van Loan to dedicate his life and fortune to combat crime, making the Phantom “a name known and admired by the police of every nation.”

The first issue of The Phantom Detective was dated February 1933. It would be followed that year by other single-character pulps including Doc Savage, The Spider, and Pete Rice Magazine. The Summer 1953 issue would be the final number of The Phantom Detective. It was the longest-lived of the hero pulps, lasting for just over twenty years.

Join PulpFest in July for a celebration of “The Hero Pulps of 1933.”

The cover art for the February 1933 issue of The Phantom Detective is by Bertram Glover, illustrating “The Emperor of Death,” written by D. L. Champion, a.k.a. Jack D’Arcy.

Hutchison, Don. The Great Pulp Heroes (Revised Edition). New York: Book Republic Press, 2007.

Johnson, Tom, et al. The Phantom Detective Companion. Boston: Altus Press, 2009.

Kenneth Robeson Coming to PulpFest

Doc Savage33-03Feb. 2, 2013–Following the astounding success of their first single-character pulp, The Shadow Magazine, Street & Smith publishing set out to duplicate its good fortune in the adventure magazine market. Working with the company’s business manager, Henry W. Ralston, Shadow editor John Nanovic spent a year developing a scientist adventurer who would travel the globe, righting wrongs and punishing evildoers. They were joined in late 1932 by Lester Dent, a former telegraph operator turned pulp writer. Soon thereafter, Doc Savage, the world’s first superhero, was born.

Doc Savage Magazine premiered early the next year with its first issue dated March 1933. The lead novel, “The Man of Bronze,” introduced Clark Savage, Jr. to a disheartened country thirsting for heroes amidst the dark days of The Great Depression. The magazine was an immediate success, soon rivaling the popularity of The Shadow Magazine on America’s newsstands.

Although the first tale of Doc Savage and his five trouble-busting assistants was credited to Kenneth Roberts, a name belonging to a former journalist and author of historical novels, later novels in the series would be said to be the work of Kenneth Robeson, a house name that hid the identity of Dent as well as Laurence Donovan, Ryerson Johnson, William Bogart, and other writers.

PulpFest is pleased to announce that the current “Kenneth Robeson,” Will Murray, will be one of its presenters at the 2013 convention for fans of pulp magazines and pulp fiction. The author of a dozen Doc Savage novels for Bantam Books and Altus Press, Will hopes to be Kenneth Robeson for a long time to come. Click on Will Murray under the Programming link of our home page for more details on our guest, one of the leading historians of the pulp era as well as one of the best adventure authors of our day.

The March 1933 issue of Doc Savage Magazine featured front cover art by pulp great Walter M. Baumhofer, illustrated Lester Dent’s novel, “The Man of Bronze.”  

Murray, Will. “Doc Savage: The First 75 Years” in Windy City Pulp Stories #8. Normal, IL: Black Dog Books (2008).

Murray, Will. “The Duende Doc Savage Index” in Duende Vol. 1. North Quincy, MA: Odyssey Publications (1977).

Murray, Will. “Intermission” in Doc Savage #14. Encinitas, CA: Sanctum Productions for Nostalgia Ventures, Inc. (2008).

Doc Savage Meets King Kong

Skull IslandFeb. 11, 2013–For the 80th anniversary of the Man of Bronze, Will Murray has teamed Doc with another legend that debuted in 1933—King Kong—in Skull Island. Meet the author at PulpFest 2013, July 25th – 28th at the Hyatt Regency in downtown Columbus, Ohio. We’ll be celebrating the pulp heroes of 1933 and more.

Cover art by Joe DeVito for Kenneth Robeson’s Skull Island, forthcoming from Altus Press.

The World’s Greatest Detective

Nick Carter 33-03Feb. 18, 2013–Nick Carter, the creation of John Russell Coryell, debuted in 1886 in Street & Smith’s New York Weekly. Five years later, the character was handed over to Frederic Dey and other writers who would pen over a thousand stories featuring the “Little Giant.” The character was so popular that when Detective Story Magazine began in 1915, Street & Smith claimed “Nicholas Carter” was its editor.

By 1933, interest in the old Nick Carter stories was beginning to wane. It was the era of the hardboiled detective with characters such as Dashiell Hammett’s Continental Op and Sam Spade, Carroll John Daly’s Race Williams and Vee Brown, and Frederick Nebel’s “Tough Dick” Donahue and Jack Cardigan tearing up the pages of rough paper magazines like Black Mask and Dime Detective.

It was also the time of the pulp hero. With The Shadow Magazine flying off America’s newsstands on a twice-monthly basis, Street & Smith decided to expand the single character field with magazines featuring adventure and detective heroes. For the latter, it was decided to create a hardboiled version of the “Little Giant” of the dime novels and Nick Carter Magazine was born. Dated March 1933, the new pulp would sport a cover by Jerome Rozen and lead with the novel, “Marked for Death,” the work of author Richard Wormser (writing as “Nick Carter”). The second of the hero pulps of 1933, Nick Carter Magazine would run through June 1936.

Clurman, Robert. “Introduction” in Nick Carter, Detective. New York: Macmillan (1963).

Cox, J. Randolph. “Nick Carter Library” and “Nick Carter Weekly” in Mystery, Detective, and Espionage Magazines (edited by Michael L. Cook). Westport, CT: Greenwood Press (1983).

Cox, J. Randolph. “The Story of Nick Carter” in Nick Carter #1. San Antonio, TX: Sanctum Books (2013).

Goulart, Ron. The Dime Detectives. New York: The Mysterious Press (1988).

Murray, Will. “Intermission” in Nick Carter #1. San Antonio, TX: Sanctum Books (2013).

Thanks to Sanctum Books for the great cover scan from the March 1933 Nick Carter Magazine.

The World’s First Superhero

“There was death afoot in the darkness. It crept furtively along a steel girder. Hundreds of feet below yawned glass-and-brick walled cracks–New York streets. Down there, late workers scurried homeward. Most of them carried umbrellas, and did not glance upward.”

Doc Savage33-03Feb. 19, 2013–Eighty years ago, the words above helped convince readers to buy Doc Savage Magazine when it appeared on newsstands around the middle of February 1933. Sporting a front cover painted by the “King of the Pulps,” Walter M. Baumhofer, and published by Street & Smith, the new rough paper magazine promised “a thrilling saga of a scrappy outfit hunting a treasure and being hunted in turn.”

“The Man of Bronze,” credited to Kenneth Roberts, was the work of Lester Dent, a writer who had broken into the pulp market in 1929 with an aviation yarn published by Top-Notch Magazine. In the ensuing years, he had sold about three dozen stories to a variety of magazines including Air Stories, Detective-Dragnet Magazine, Scotland Yard, Sky Riders, War Birds, and Western Trails.

Impressed by Dent’s ability to combine an “extravagant plot, scenes and action with comparatively high credibility and reasonableness of motivation,” the author was invited to the offices of Street & Smith to join business manager Henry W. Ralston and Shadow Magazine editor John L. Nanovic in a brainstorming session to flesh out a new adventure series–Doc Savage.

Although Doc Savage Magazine was the third hero pulp to premier in 1933, it would certainly become the most popular of the single character magazines that debuted in that year, tailing only The Shadow in total issues published. The character would go on to not only inspire the original pulp readers, but also the fans of the Bantam reprints that appeared from 1964 through 1990 and the readers of today who regale to the original pulp tales collected by Sanctum Books and Will Murray’s new adventures of the man of bronze, published by Altus Press.

Join PulpFest 2013 over the last weekend of July to celebrate eighty years of Doc Savage and the pulp heroes of 1933.   

Dent, Lester. “The Man of Bronze.” Doc Savage #14. San Antonio, TX: Sanctum Books (2008).

Murray, Will. “The First Heroes.” Pulp Vault #3. Chicago: Tattered Pages Press (1988).

Murray, Will. “Introduction.” Doc Savage, Supreme Adventurer. Greenwood, MA: Odyssey Publications (1980).

Spring Training for PulpFest

Green GirlFeb. 23, 2013–With spring comes baseball, pulp cons, and paperback shows. Leading off is the 34th annual Los Angeles Vintage Paperback Show. This one-day show will feature appearances by over forty writers including James Blaylock, Dennis Etchison, William F. Nolan, and Harry Turtledove, all of them very happy to sign your books. It will take place on Sunday, April 7th, at the Valley Inn and Conference Center in Mission Hills, California.

Weird Tales 36-03The Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention is in the number two hole. Now in its 13th year, this Chicago-area event will be celebrating ninety years of science-fiction and fantasy magazines with salutes to Weird Tales and the “Scientific Fiction Number” of Hugo Gernsback’s Science and Invention. The Windy will be held at the Westin Lombard Yorktown Center from April 12th – 14th.

The three spot features the South’s leading “pulp culture” convention, Pulp Ark. A writers’ conference and pulp convention, it focuses on the methodology of pulp fiction, storytelling involving “action, adventure, larger-than-life heroes and villains, and a strong focus on both plot and characterization.” Featuring guest appearances by Joe Devito, Martin Powell, and Paul Bishop, Pulp Ark will take place April 26th – 28th at the Holiday Inn Springdale Hotel and Convention Center in Springdale, Arkansas.

Fantastic Pulps 2013Batting clean-up on May 11th is Canada’s premier pulp event, the 17th annual Fantastic Pulps Show & Sale at the Lillian H. Smith branch of the Toronto Public Library in Toronto, Ontario. You can learn more about this small, pulp-specific show by writing to Girasol Collectables, 3501 Glen Erin Drive, Suite 1409, Mississauga, ON, Canada L5L 2E9 or via email at info@girasolcollectables.com.

Penciled in to follow on May 17th – 19th is the 2013 Edgar Rice Burroughs Chain of Friendship (ECOF) Gathering, hosted by the Chicago Muckers, the regional chapter of the Burroughs Bibliophiles. It will be held at the Quality Inn in Morris, Illinois and feature artist Mike Hoffman as its guest of honor.

Cinevent 45 is slotted in at number six, taking place over Memorial Day weekend, May 24th – 27th. In addition to 170 tables of movie-related collectibles such as posters, lobby cards, presskits, DVDs, and 16 mm films, Cinevent features an extensive schedule of classic sound and silent films and one of the country’s largest live auctions of vintage posters. It will be held at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Conference Center in Columbus, Ohio.

Weird Tales 34-08Robert E. Howard Days is installed as the number seven hitter on June 7-8 at the the Robert E. Howard House & Museum in Cross Plains, Texas. This annual gathering of fans of Two-Gun Bob is presented by Project Pride of Cross Plains and sponsored by the Robert E. Howard Foundation, with help from the members of the Robert E. Howard United Press Association. Tim Truman, artist and writer for Dark Horse Comics, will be guest of honor.

Pinch-hitting sometime later this spring is Classicon 43, one of the first pulp and paperback shows ever established. Featuring 35 tables and thousands of collectible pulp magazines, paperbacks, vintage comic books, original artwork, and more, it is held twice a year in Lansing, Michigan. For further information, write to the Curious Book Shop at 304 East Grand River Avenue, East Lansing, Michigan 48823 or by email at cbsmail@curiousbooks.com.

Doc Savage33-03At the bottom of the line-up is the best pulp event of all, the summertime destination for fans and collectors of vintage popular fiction and related materials, PulpFest 2013. Join us from July 25th through July 28th at the Hyatt Regency Columbus for summer’s great pulp con, celebrating eighty years of Doc Savage and the pulp heroes of 1933 and the centennial of Sax Rohmer’s villainous Dr. Fu Manchu!

The art above includes Ray Johnson’s cover to the Avon Books edition of Jack Williamson’s The Green Girl (1950); Margaret Brundage’s sadistic Weird Tales cover from March 1936, often associated with Paul Ernst’s Doctor Satan story printed in that issue; Virgil Finlay’s cover to the March 1949 issue of Fantastic Novels, doctored by Neil Mechem of Girasol Collectables; Conan, as depicted by Margaret Brundage for the August 1934 number of Weird Tales; and Walter Baumhofer’s classic rendition of “The Man of Bronze” from the March 1933 issue of Doc Savage Magazine.

It’s Munsey Nomination Time

Feb. 27, 2013–PulpFest annually recognizes the efforts of those who work to keep the pulps alive for this and future generations. Each year, someone is selected to receive The Munsey Award (pictured at left). Named after Frank A. Munsey, the man who published the first pulp magazine, nominations for the award are now being accepted. All members of the pulp community, whether they plan to attend PulpFest 2013 or not, are welcome to nominate a deserving person for this year’s award.

You can also nominate someone for the Rusty Hevelin Service Award. Initiated in 2012, this award is designed to recognize those persons who have worked long and hard for the pulp community with little thought for individual recognition. It is meant to reward especially good works, and is thus reserved for only those individuals who are most deserving.

If you have someone in mind that you feel worthy to receive either of these prestigious awards, please let us know. All members of the pulp community, excepting past winners of the Munsey, Hevelin, or Lamont Awards, are eligible. Please send the person’s name and a brief paragraph describing why you feel that person should be honored to Mike Chomko, 2217 W. Fairview Street, Allentown, PA 18104-6542 or to mike@pulpfest.com. The deadline for nominations is April 30, 2013. The recipient of the Munsey and/or Rusty Hevelin Service Award will be selected by a panel of judges consisting of recognized experts in the pulp field. The award will be presented on July 27th, during the convention’s evening programming.

The Birth of Dr. Fu-Manchu

“Imagine a person, tall, lean, and feline, high-shouldered, with a brow like Shakespeare and a face like Satan, a close-shaven skull, and long, magnetic eyes of the true cat-green. Invest him with all the cruel cunning of an entire Eastern race, accumulated in one giant intellect, with all the resources of science past and present. Imagine that awful being, and you have a mental picture of Dr. Fu-Manchu, the yellow peril incarnate in one man.”

Collier's, 05-07-32March 2, 2013–One-hundred years ago, the words above were published in the February 15, 1913 issue of Collier’s. “The Zayat Kiss” was the work of Arthur Henry Sarsfield Ward, better known as Sax Rohmer, and introduced American readers to Dr. Fu-Manchu. Although Rohmer did not create the “yellow peril” story, his tales of “the devil doctor” were certainly the most influential of that story type.

During his life, Sax Rohmer penned four accounts concerning his creation of Dr. Fu-Manchu. Supposedly inspired by a “Mr. King,” a wealthy man of mystery said to control all the Chinese gambling, drug traffic, and Tongs of London, Rohmer claimed that Fu-Manchu arose from a chance encounter that he had one night in the Limehouse district of the city:

I took cover in the entrance to a narrow alleyway. The car pulled up less than ten yards from where I stood. A smart chauffeur switched on the inside light, jumped out, and opened the door for his passengers.

I saw a tall and very dignified man alight, Chinese, but different from any Chinese I had ever met. He wore a long, black topcoat and a queer astrakhan cap. He strode into the house. He was followed by an Arab girl, or she may have been an Egyptian. . . .

The chauffeur closed the car door, jumped to his seat, and backed out the way he had come in. The headlights faded in the mist . . . and Dr. Fu Manchu was born! (Sax Rohmer. “How Fu Manchu Was Born.” This Week, 09/29/57).

That night, alone in my room, I searched through my memories of the East. . . Daylight was not far away when at last I had created Fu Manchu, a genius of princely rank holding degrees of three European universities. . . . closing my eyes, I could both see and hear Dr. Fu Manchu. . . . “You have sought for and you have found me. . . . You have followed me through the forests of Burma. You have tracked me to my palace in Kiang Su. Because you have made, you think that you know me. Do you dream that your Mr. Commissioner Nayland Smith can conquer me? That my mastery of the secret sects of the East can be met by the simple efficiency of the West? I shall prove a monster which neither you nor those you have created to assist you can hope to conquer. . . .  It is your boast that you have made me. It is mine that I shall live when you are smoke.” (Sax Rohmer in Meet the Detective, Cecil Madden, editor. New York: Telegraph Press, 1935).

Join PulpFest in July as we celebrate the centennial of Sax Rohmer’s enduring literary icon, Dr. Fu Manchu. We’ll also be celebrating Sax Rohmer’s 130th birthday which took place on February 15th of this year. He was born way back in 1883.

W. T. Benda’s masterful cover for the May 7, 1932 issue of Collier’s, illustrating Sax Rohmer’s The Mask of Fu Manchu appears above, courtesy of The Page of Fu Manchu, the source for much of this article.

Advertise in THE PULPSTER

The_Pulpster_22_cover_testMarch 10, 2013–Our editor and designer Bill Lampkin is already hard at work on the next issue of The Pulpster. Along with articles on the pulp heroes of 1933 and Fu Manchu and the yellow peril, Bill has a number of surprises up his sleeves. So expect a slam-bang issue from the new editor of our award-winning program book.  Every member of PulpFest will receive a complimentary copy of The Pulpster.

If you’d like to place an advertisement in this year’s Pulpster, there’s still time to do so. However, the June 1st deadline for reserving advertising space is fast approaching. Our rates are very reasonable: color back cover–$160; inside color covers–$125; inside black and white full page–$65; half-page–$40; quarter page–$25. Print specifications, payment information, and more can be found on the Program Book page of our website. To inquire about space availability, please write to Mike Chomko at mike@pulpfest.com. The Pulpster has a circulation of 450-500 copies. All advertising is sold on a first come, first served basis, with payment expected immediately upon reserving a space. You can also submit your advertising copy to Mike and ask him about back issues.

Another way to advertise at PulpFest is to donate material for our giveaway tables. Over the years The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, Book Source Magazine, Girasol Collectables, Radio Archives, Stark House Press, and other organizations have donated a variety of publications that were given away free to PulpFest attendees. Your donation will be acknowledged on our website and at the convention. If you’d like to offer something for our giveaway table, please contact Mike Chomko at mike@pulpfest.com.

The front cover of this year’s Pulpster uses Walter Baumhofer’s magnificent portrait of The Man of Bronze from the July 1935 issue of Doc Savage Magazine. Doc Savage is a registered trademark of Advance Publishers, Inc. d/b/a Conde Nast.

Pulp Con Season Starts in Two Weeks

ScienceAndInvention1923-08March 24, 2013–With April approaching, the pulp con season begins. First up will be the Los Angeles Vintage Paperback Show, followed by the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention beginning April 12th. PulpFest committee members Jack Cullers, Mike Chomko, and Ed Hulse will all be there with information about PulpFest 2013.

A couple of weeks after Windy City, the South’s leading “pulp culture” convention, Pulp Ark will take place in Springdale, Arkansas while Canada’s premier pulp event, the Fantastic Pulps Show & Sale, will be held May 11th in Toronto. About a week later, Morris, Illinois will host the 2013 Edgar Rice Burroughs Chain of Friendship Gathering while Columbus, Ohio will be home to Cinevent 45 over Memorial Day weekend.

June 7th and 8th are the dates for Robert E. Howard Days in the author’s home town of Cross Plains, Texas. Still to be announced is the date for the spring edition of Classicon, but the Derby City Comic Con will go off on June 29th in Louisville, Kentucky.

Of course, all of these events are a prelude for the best pulp event of all, the summertime destination for fans and collectors of vintage popular fiction and related materials, PulpFest 2013. This year, we’ll be celebrating Doc Savage and the pulp heroes of 1933 and the centennial of the villainous Dr. Fu Manchu. Our guests will include Will Murray, author of twelve Doc Savage novels, including the just-released King Kong crossover, Skull Island; Lamont Award winner Don Hutchison, leading pulp anthologist and author of The Great Pulp Heroes and numerous articles about the pulps; Nathan Madison, author of Anti-Foreign Imagery in American Pulps and Comics, 1920-1960; William Patrick Maynard, the writer authorized to continue the Fu Manchu series; and pulp art expert David Saunders. There will also be a showing of the complete movie serial, The Spider’s Web, produced by Columbia Pictures in 1938.

PulpFest is now accepting registrations for this year’s convention, running July 25th-28th. From our registration page, you’ll be able to download our member and dealer registration forms. You can pay for memberships and dealer tables through our Paypal order page. You’ll also be able to book a room at the Hyatt Regency Columbus at the convention rate of $112 plus tax via our special link to the hotel.

We are also happy to once again supply a third table free of charge to dealers who stay at the Hyatt and rent two tables in our hucksters’ room. That’s three tables for the price of two, or six for the price of four. The massive size of the Regency Ballroom enables us to provide this extra exhibit space to loyal PulpFest dealers. Remember, this special offer is good only to dealers staying at the host hotel.

With about a quarter of the vast collection of pulp researcher Al Tonik tucked away in storage, PulpFest is delighted to report that the remainder of Albert’s superlative library of hardcovers, paperbacks, pulps, dime novels, comic books, fanzines, art books, and reference books will be sold during our Saturday night auction on July 27th. For additional details, including a link to the catalog, please visit the Tonik Auction page under our Auctions button.

All this and more can be found by clicking the buttons along the left side of our home page. And don’t forget, you can make your nominations for the 2013 Munsey and Rusty Hevelin Service Awards through the end of April. Please send the name of the person that you’d like to nominate and a short paragraph describing your reasons for your nomination to Mike Chomko, 2217 W. Fairview St., Allentown, PA  18104-6542 or to mike@pulpfest.com.

In the coming weeks, PulpFest will start previewing its highly respected programming on this site. So please visit often. We look forward to seeing you July 25th through July 28th.

This year’s Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention will be saluting ninety years of science fiction and fantasy magazines including the August 1923 issue of Hugo Gernsback’s Science and Invention magazine, its “Scientific Fiction Number” which sported front cover art by Howard V. Brown. The scan is from the January 31, 2012 Tellers of Weird Tales.

Programming at PulpFest 2013

PulpFest 2013 FlyerApril 25, 2013–PulpFest is proud of the variety of presentations we offer to attendees. So we are very excited to announce that our tentative programming schedule is now available on the Programming page of our website. Our themes will revolve around Doc Savage and the Pulp Heroes of 1933 and the centennial of Sax Rohmer’s Dr. Fu Manchu and the Yellow Peril Genre.

All scheduled programming will take place in the Fairfield Room located on the second floor of the Hyatt Regency Columbus. Click the link above or the “Programming” button along the left side of our home page for a preview of this year’s convention as well as instructions on how to stay informed about “Summer’s Great Pulp Con,” PulpFest 2013.

Free Wi-Fi at PulpFest

13th World SF ConventionApril 25, 2013–PulpFest 2013 Chairman Jack Cullers is very pleased to announce that free, in-room Wi-Fi will be provided to all members who will be staying at the Hyatt Regency Columbus during this year’s convention. So don’t lose any time. Book your room immediately at the special convention rate of $112 per night–which also includes one free parking pass–to be assured of “a room at the inn.”

To reward loyal attendees who support the convention by staying at the host hotel, PulpFest will also provide a ten-dollar rebate redeemable at the convention’s registration desk. Remember, you must place your reservation by July 5, 2013 to receive the special convention rate of $112 per night.

You can book a room online by clicking here, an electronic reservations interface customized for PulpFest attendees. Or call 1-888-421-1442 or 1-614-463-1234 to book a room by telephone. Be sure to mention PulpFest to get the special convention rate. By staying at the Hyatt Regency, you’ll help to ensure the convention’s success. Thanks.

Above is Frank R. Paul’s illustration for the 13th World Science Fiction Convention, Clevention, held in Cleveland, Ohio in 1955.

The Pulp Heroes Take to the Air

May 27, 2013–Americans in 1933 had “nothing to fear, but fear itself,” and the pulp heroes introduced early that year had been proving the country’s new president to be absolutely correct. During that harrowing year, The Phantom Detective, Nick Carter, and Doc Savage had met and defeated “The Emperor of Death,” “Maniacs of Science,” “The Red Skull,” and other adversaries. As the year wore on and The Great Depression savaged other genres, the pulp heroes of 1933 surged forward, their magazines disappearing from America’s newsstands. And the publishers noticed.

Air Stories 27-08When Fiction House introduced Air Stories during the summer of 1927, aviation fiction had become a standard of the industry. With the launching of War Birds in early 1928, Dell Publishing would add war to the mix. Riding the tide of “air-mindedness” inspired by the heroic flight of Charles Lindbergh, both magazines proved to be instant hits and similar titles were rushed to the stands.

With the stock market crash of 1929, “the vision that aviation would lead mankind to a higher level of civilization…came plummeting down to earth,” taking much of the air pulp market with it. However, the genre was far from dead. In 1932, a trio of air-war magazines was born–Popular Publications’ Dare-Devil Aces and Battle Birds and the Thrilling Groups’ Sky Fighters. Their pages filled with the exploits of flying aces of the First World War, these pulps were “especially sought after by boys raised on the courageous exploits of fathers and uncles who had served in the Great War, boys who kept themselves busy building model planes constructed of balsa wood.” Little wonder that the next pulp heroes to be introduced in 1933 would take to the air, retelling the adventures of two flying aces of the First World War.

Borrowing one of the nicknames given to Charles Lindbergh following his nonstop flight from New York to Paris, Standard Magazines was first to the stands with The Lone Eagle. Retelling the heroic adventures of Air Intelligence Agent John Masters, “the world’s greatest Sky Fighter,” as proclaimed on the magazine’s cover, the pulp debuted in the late summer of 1933.

Lone Eagle 33-09“Masters showed a natural affinity for a stuttering machine-gun and as his natural proficiency increased, he built up a dark and terrible reputation about his name. He became the “Lone Eagle” of the skies…. He showed an indomitable courage and a dynamic driving power, in pushing to a successful conclusion his secret missions. Many men feared him, many hated him–an occasional one loved him.”

Those words, written by F. E. Rechnitzer, appeared in “No Man’s Air,” the lead novel for the first issue of the new hero pulp  A former World War I allied pilot and prisoner-of-war, Rechnitzer is believed to have written many of the adventures of The Lone Eagle, hidden behind the “Lt. Scott Morgan” house name. Robert Sidney Bowen probably contributed most of the later novels. In all, seventy-five tales of “the world’s greatest Sky Fighter” would appear through the spring of 1943 when the magazine would fly off into the sunset as The American Eagle.

One month after the debut of Standard’s air hero, Popular Publications premiered G-8 and His Battle Aces with Robert J. Hogan at the controls. An air cadet at the end of the first world war, Hogan turned to writing after losing employment as an airplane salesman. Although he also wrote sports and Western fiction, Hogan was a regular for the air pulps, scoring big with his Smoke Wade and Red Falcon stories.

In the summer of 1933, Henry Steeger, co-founder of Popular Publications, had asked Hogan to come up with a book-length air character patterned after The Shadow and Doc Savage, pitting “a super protagonist and his loyal side men against heinous forces of power and evil.”

G-8-33-10“We have decided to make you a special agent of the spy system of America. A special independent system…. No one will take command over you. You may choose any assistants you wish. You may take matters entirely in your own hands. You will answer to no one but us, and that will be at your discretion. Your first job will be to stop this deadly plan of the fiend, Krueger…”

Determined “to avoid similarity and dullness with a healthy injection of fantasy,” Hogan created diabolical masterminds to match wits with his flying spy: “Herr Doktor Kreuger, a fiendish, thick-lensed gnome whose outsized brain conceived surgically altered man-beasts and mammoth bird monsters, deadly rays and flying swords…. Chu Lung, an oriental mercenary scientist with a retinue of padding hatchet men, and the huge Herr Stahlmaske, crazed and scarred in a fiery crash, who wore a bullet-shaped steel mask and commanded an underworld corps of disfigured brutes equipped with razored gloves. There were others with secret formulas from the ancient tombs of Egypt, voodoo priests and flying zombies from Haiti, cobra charmers and poison dart mystics from India and Africa, and even a tribe of defrosted Vikings from northern glaciers.”

Debuting in the October 1933 number of G-8 and His Battle Aces in “The Bat Staffel,” Hogan’s hero would appear in 110 adventures, battling “The Skeleton Patrol,” “Staffel of the Floating Heads,” “The Black Aces of Doom,” “Squadron of the Flying Dead,” “Skeletons of the Black Cross,” “Hordes of the Wingless Death,” and other hideous horrors of the hated Hun. The final issue of the Popular Publication would be dated June 1944.

To learn more about these and the other great pulp heroes of 1933, register now for PulpFest 2013, running from Thursday, July 25th through Sunday, July 28th.

The covers pictured above are from the August 1927 Air Stories (artist Frank McAleer with scan from The Fiction Mags Index); the September 1933 The Lone Eagle (artist Eugene M. Franzden with scan from All Things Pulp); and the October 1933 issue of G-8 and His Battle Aces (artist Frederick Blakeslee with scan from Savage Tales)

Bradd, Sidney H. “G-8, Flying Spy of the Pulps.” Xenophile #11 (March 1975). St. Louis, MO: Nils Hardin.

Chomko, Michael. “The Rise and Fall of the Air Pulps.” The New, Complete, Thrilling, Popular, Spicy, Mammoth, All-Comment Magazine #17 for the April 2002 PEAPS Mailing.

Hogan, Robert J. G-8 and His Battle Aces #1: The Bat Staffel. New York: Berkley Publishing (1961).

Rechnitzer, F. E. “No Man’s Land” in Wings of War. Normal, IL: Black Dog Books (2011).

Bill Maynard Presents Fu Manchu

Maynard 2012May 30, 2013–They were called scribes, word slingers, hacks, and penny-a-worders. But perhaps the most favored term, especially among the men and women who labored for the bloody pulps, was fictioneer or, more specifically, a fiction writer, particularly a prolific creator of commercial or pulp fiction. Join PulpFest as we celebrate today’s fictioneers—the authors writing the new pulp fiction—the New Fictioneers!

Our special guest, William Patrick Maynard, will get things rolling on Friday, July 26th. Authorized by the estate of Sax Rohmer to continue the Fu Manchu series, Maynard’s debut novel, The Terror of Fu Manchu, was published in 2009 by Black Coat Press. A sequel, The Destiny of Fu Manchu, followed in 2012. Bill will be reading from The Triumph of Fu Manchu, his forthcoming novel concerning Rohmer’s fabulous devil doctor.

Bill pens a weekly pulp fiction column for The Black Gate and was formerly a regular contributor to The Cimmerian. His articles have been published in Blood and Thunder, Windy City Pulp Stories and The Pulpster, among others, while his short fiction has appeared in The Ruby Files (Airship 27), Gaslight Grotesque (EDGE Publishing), and Tales of the Shadowmen: Grand Guignol (Black Coat Press). He has contributed essays to Serial Squadron’s remastered Drums of Fu Manchu DVD and to the Sax Rohmer collection, The Voice of Kali (Black Dog Books). He is a past nominee of a Pulp Factory Award for Best Pulp Novel and a Rondo Award for Best Genre Article in a Periodical. Most recently, he received three nominations for the 2012 Pulp Ark Awards including Best Pulp Novel and Best Short Story.

Meet “the yellow peril incarnate in one man” as William Patrick Maynard gets our annual New Fictioneer readings off to a tremendous start at 1 PM on July 26th in the Fairfield Room located on the second floor of the Hyatt Regency Columbus.

The Destiny of Fu Manchu was Bill Maynard’s second novel to be published by Black Coat Press. Christine Clavel provided the front cover art for the book.

Wold Newton Fictioneers

Scarlet JaguarJune 3, 2013–Longtime Farmerphile Win Scott Eckert is a familiar face at summer’s great pulp con. Since FarmerCon joined with PulpFest in 2011, Win has appeared on several panels, signed books, and regaled audiences as part of the convention’s popular New Fictioneers presentations. For his reading this year, Win has decided to share center stage with his good friend and fellow Philip José Farmer devotee, John Allen Small.

John grew up wanting to be a writer, and so he did. A journalist and columnist who has earned nearly 200 awards from the Society of Professional Journalists, the National Newspaper Association, and other professional organizations, John hails from Oklahoma. He has also written fiction for The Avenger: Roaring Heart Of The Crucible (2013), The Green Hornet: Still At Large (2012), The Worlds Of Philip José Farmer 2: Of Dust And Souls (2011), and other works; authored two collections of his own; and contributed to the new hardcover edition of Farmer’s Doc Savage: His Apocalyptic Life and the forthcoming Tales Of The Wold Newton Universe. At PulpFest, John will be reading “The Bright Heart of Eternity,” a tribute to Edgar Rice Burroughs and Philip José Farmer, and the opening scene from his Avenger story, “Ghost of Thunder Isle.”

A three-time New Fictioneer, Colorado’s Win Scott Eckert returns to the Fairfield Room stage with two new works. He’ll be reading from The Scarlet Jaguar, his limited edition novella that is to be released by Meteor House at PulpFest 2013/FarmerCon VIII  in celebratration of Doc Savage’s eightieth anniversary. Featuring Patricia Wildman, daughter of a certain bronze champion of justice, The Scarlet Jaguar is the sequel to the Eckert/Farmer collaboration The Evil in Pemberley House (2009).

Win also plans to offer an excerpt from  A Girl and Her Cat, the first new Honey West novel in over forty years. In this exciting work forthcoming from Moonstone Books that was co-written by Matthew Baugh, Honey teams up with former cat burglar-turned-bodyguard Thomas Hewitt Edward Cat–T.H.E Cat.

In addition to the works mentioned above, Win Scott Eckert is the editor of and contributor to Myths for the Modern Age: Philip José Farmer’s Wold Newton Universe (MonkeyBrain Books), a 2007 Locus Awards finalist. He has co-edited three Green Hornet anthologies for Moonstone Books; the third, The Green Hornet: Still at Large, recently won the 2013 PulpArk Award for best anthology. His tales of The Green Hornet, Zorro, The Avenger, The Phantom, The Scarlet Pimpernel, Captain Midnight, and Sherlock Holmes, can be found in various character-themed anthologies from Moonstone, as well as anthologies such as Tales of the Wold Newton Universe (Titan Books) and Tales of the Shadowmen (Black Coat Press). His critically acclaimed Crossovers: A Secret Chronology of the World  was released by Black Coat Press in 2010. Find Win on the web at www.winscotteckert.com.

Join Win Scott Eckert and John Allen Small in the Fairfield Room at the Hyatt Regency Columbus at 3 PM on Friday, July 26th for their exciting New Fictioneers presentation.

The artwork above is by Mark Sparacio for the forthcoming The Scarlet Jaguar from Meteor House, debuting at PulpFest 2013/FarmerCon VIII.

The Future of “New Pulp”

Agent X Vol. 3June 5, 2013–At 1 PM on Saturday, July 27th, writer, editor-in-chief of Airship 27, and two-time Pulp Factory Award winner, Ron Fortier, and five contemporary authors will gaze into their crystal balls to chart the road ahead for the new and exciting continuation of the pulp genre known as “New Pulp.” Joining Ron will be Jim Beard, Win Scott Eckert, Rick Lai, Frank Schildiner, and Dr. Art Sippo.

A native Toledoan, Jim Beard became a published fiction writer when he sold a story to DC Comics in 2002. Since then, he’s written Star Wars and Ghostbusters comics as well as several works of new pulp fiction including Sgt. Janus, Spirit-Breaker and Captain Action: Riddle of the Glowing Men, the first pulp prose novel based on the classic 1960s action figure.

One of our 2013 New Fictioneers, Win Scott Eckert is the co-author with Philip José Farmer of the Wold Newton novel The Evil in Pemberley House. Win’s sequel, The Scarlet Jaguar, will premier at this year’s PulpFest. In addition to co-editing three Green Hornet anthologies for Moonstone Books, Win has written countless tales featuring Zorro, The Avenger, Honey West, The Phantom, Captain Midnight, The Scarlet Pimpernel, Sherlock Holmes, and many other genre fiction characters.

Rick Lai is a computer programmer best known for his articles based on the Wold Newton concepts of Philip José Farmer. These were recently collected into four volumes by Altus Press. His short stories have appeared regularly in the Tales of the Shadowmen anthologies published by Black Coat Press. In 2011, Wild Cat Books released Rick’s Shadows of the Opera, a novel about a 19th century female vigilante.

A pulp fan since reading Philip José Farmer’s Tarzan Alive, Frank Schildiner is a martial arts instructor from New Jersey. He has written Black Bat, Ravenwood, and Secret Agent X stories for Airship 27; Avenger yarns for Moonstone Books; tales of Thunder Jim Wade and Richard Knight for Pro Se Productions; and contributed to Black Coat Press’s Tales of the Shadowmen series.

An emergency room physician in St. Louis, Missouri, FarmerCon VIII panel moderator Art Sippo has written a number of articles and short stories grounded in the pulps. His first book, Sun Koh: Heir of Atlantis, was a 2010 Pulp Factory Award nominee for Best Pulp Novel. Art served in the U. S. Army for 36 years.

Rob Davis and Shane Evans created the cover for the third volume of Airship 27 Productions’ Secret Agent “X”: The Man of a Thousand Faces, published in 2008.

The Beard . . . . New Fictioneer!

Monster Earth Cover letters placeholder artJune 7, 2013–Jim Beard was introduced to comic books by his father, who passed on to him a love for the medium and the pulp characters that preceded it. After decades of reading, collecting, and dissecting comics, Jim became a published writer when he sold a story to DC Comics in 2002. Since then, he’s written comic stories for Dark Horse’s Star Wars and IDW’s Ghostbusters and contributed articles and essays to several volumes of comic book history.

A native of Toledo, Ohio where he is a regular columnist for the Toledo Free Press, Jim broke into the world of “New Pulp” in 2012 when Airship 27 published Sgt. Janus, Spirit-Breaker, a collection of ghost stories featuring an occult detective, and Captain Action: Riddle of the Glowing Men, the first prose novel based on the 1960s action figure. Jim provides regular content for Marvel.com, the official Marvel Comics website, and has new and forthcoming comic and prose work from Bluewater, TwoMorrows, Airship 27 and Pro Se Productions.

Join “The Beard” on Saturday, July 27th at 3 PM when Jim will be reading from Sgt. Janus, Spirit-Breaker, Captain Action: Riddle of the Glowing Men, and “The Parade of Moments,” a story published in Monster Earth, a shared-world anthology of giant monster tales. And to learn more about this exciting new writer, please visit The Beard: The Jim Beard Fan Page.

Doc Meets the King

KIng Kong 3June 9, 2013–Beginning with the premier of Standard Magazines’ The Phantom Detective at the start of the year and Nick Carter and Doc Savage from Street & Smith in February, on through to the fall when Popular Publications released G-8 and His Battle Aces and The Spider, 1933 was the “year of the hero pulp.” And let’s not forget that The Lone Eagle and Pete Rice likewise debuted that year.

But 1933 was not just the year of the hero pulp. On March 2 of that same year, RKO Radio Pictures premiered “the eighth wonder of the world,” King Kong, at New York’s Radio City Music Hall and the Roxy. In just four days, the film earned nearly $90,000, a substantial sum in those dark Depression days.

To celebrate the 80th anniversaries of “The Man of Bronze” and King Kong, Will Murray, author of The Wild Adventures of Doc Savage, paired the two characters in his novel, Skull Island. On Saturday, July 27th, at 2 PM, PulpFest 2013 will host a special New Fictioneers reading of Mr. Murray’s bestselling novel by Radio Archives’ reader Roger Price.

During his lengthy career as an entertainer, Roger has performed on television, radio and the live stage. At one time or another, he has worked as a stand-up comic, hosted a late night movie series as a character called “The Baron,” worked as a morning radio personality, hosted and emceed numerous live events, served as an entertainment news anchor and even as a ring announcer for professional wrestling. Comic book and pop culture fans know Roger as the creator, director and “voice” of Mid-Ohio-Con, one of the largest and longest running shows of it’s kind.

Through Radio Archives, Roger Price can be heard reading various short stories on Strange Detective Mysteries #1, Captain Satan #1, Captain Zero #1 and other audiobooks. Roger also works with a wide variety of clients as an announcer and voice actor, specializing in character/cartoon voices and dialects.

Following the reading, both Will Murray and Roger Price will be available for questions and conversation.

“Classic Hollywood: 80th Birthday Toast to King Kong. Los Angeles Times (February 17, 2012).

“King Kong Turns 80: 10 Things to Know About the Groundbreaking Film.” Mental_Floss (2012).

The poster above, from the American theatrical release of RKO Radio Pictures’ King Kong, is from Heritage Auctions’  Vintage Movie Poster Signature Auction held in late November 2012. The original poster was produced by the Morgan Litho. Co. of Cleveland, Ohio. The artist is not known.

Master of Men!

spider1June 12, 2013–Popular Publications got its start in late 1930 when Henry Steeger and Harold Goldsmith released their first four titles–Battle Aces, Detective Action Stories, Gang World, and Western Rangers. A year later, they were joined by two more– Underworld Romances and the magazine that helped send the company to the top of the pulp chain, Dime Detective Magazine.

During the spring and summer of 1933, Henry Steeger planned additional releases. Two would be targeted at the Western and love genres, while the others would mark Popular’s entry into the single-character market. “At this point in pulp history, individual titles became very popular, so we decided to try out a few…”

Popular Publications debuted their four newest titles in September 1933: Star Western and Lovers Magazine; their air-war hero pulp, G-8 and His Battle Aces; and the company’s answer to The Shadow Magazine, the phenomenally popular Street & Smith character pulp, that Steeger entitled The Spider.

Leading off that first issue of The Spider, cover dated October 1933, was R. T. M. Scott‘s “The Spider Strikes.” A mystery novelist well known for his character Secret Service Smith, Scott would only write the first two novels of the magazine’s long run. He would however, introduce many of the trappings that would endear the pulp’s characters to readers of The Spider.

With its third issue, The Spider was turned over to a new writer, Norvell W. Page, a newspaperman turned pulp writer. Hiding behind the name Grant Stockbridge, Page would contribute 91 tales of the “Master of Men”–more than three-quarters of the magazine’s 118-issue run–writing with “heart, feeling and emotion,” as the late Michael Avallone wrote in the June 1981 issue of Mike Shayne Mystery Magazine:

Richard Wentworth, playboy millionaire by day and caped crusader by night . . . Master of disguise, superbly-conditioned body, keen, alert brain and altogether hair-trigger personality when the United States and the world was threatened by master villains, Yellow Perils, horrible hordes, devastating plagues and killing, chilling terrorism. Wentworth who became the cragged, grotesque Spider who left his vermillion trademark on the dead foreheads of The Enemy.

Started as a knock-off of the first single-character pulp, The Spider would eventually join Doc Savage, G-8 and His Battle Aces, Jim Hatfield (in Texas Rangers), The Phantom Detective and The Shadow, the magazine that inspired them all, as one of the longest-lived of the hero pulps, thanks largely to the white-hot prose of Norvell Page.

PulpFest 2013 salutes eighty years of The Spider and “The Pulp Heroes of 1933″ from July 25th – 28th in Columbus, Ohio.

 

Chomko, Michael. “Popular Publications’ Pulp Output.” The New, Complete, Thrilling, Popular, Spicy, Mammoth, All-Comment Magazine #20 for the October 2003 PEAPS Mailing.

Hardin, Nils. “An Interview with Henry Steeger.” Xenophile 33 (July 1977).

Murray, Will. “The Web.”  The Spider #1. San Antonio, TX: Sanctum Books (2013).

Sampson, Robert. Spider. Bowling Green, Ohio: Bowling Green State Popular Pres (1987).

Scott, R. T. M. The Spider Strikes. New York: Berkley Publishing Corporation (1969).

Walter Baumhofer painted the cover to The Spider: Master of Men! for October 1933, pictured above.

The Ancestors of Batman

DetectiveComics27June 14, 2013–PulpFest‘s programming begins with an off-site presentation to which convention attendees are cordially invited. On Thursday, July 25th, in Room 150A-B at Ohio State University’s Thompson Library, PulpFest committee member and Blood ‘n’ Thunder editor/publisher Ed Hulse will deliver a lecture titled The Ancestors of Batman: Colorful Crime Fighters of Pulp Fiction.

Ed’s presentation ties in with PulpFest‘s 80th-anniversary celebration of the 1933 hero-pulp explosion that gave us Doc Savage, The Spider, The Phantom Detective and others. As he will point out, these characters directly influenced such later comic-book heroes as Batman–whose very first exploit was, in fact, plagiarized from a 1936 Shadow novel.

The Dealers of PulpFest 2013

Newsstand2013

June 16, 2013–PulpFest 2013 is very happy to announce that its dealers’ page has been updated to include all sellers who have registered for the 2013 convention to date.

Every great pulp con is centered around its dealers’ room and this year, PulpFest will be hosting about fifty sellers of pulp magazines and related materials, vintage paperbacks, digests, men’s adventure and true crime magazines, first edition hardcovers, series books, dime novels, original art, Big Little Books, Golden and Silver Age comic books, vintage films and radio programs, and other pop culture collectibles. There will be over one-hundred tables of material. You’ll find most of our sellers listed on the freshly revised Our Dealers page.

The PulpFest dealers’ room will be situated in the Regency Ballroom, a 15,800 square-foot gathering space that will feature wide aisles and spacious work areas for our sellers. Located on the third floor of the Hyatt Regency Columbus, the ballroom can accomodate up to 1600 people at any given moment.

If you are interested in selling at this year’s PulpFest, there is still “room at the inn.” Please visit our registration page for further instructions or write to Jack Cullers at jack@pulpfest.com. And don’t forget, for those dealers who plan to stay at the Hyatt Regency, PulpFest is offering one free table for every two reserved. That’s three for the price of two, six for the price of four, and so on. Additionally, dealers staying at the Hyatt will also receive ten dollars back from their registration fee.

Dealer set-up will take place on Thursday, July 25th from 4 – 11 PM. There’s a side entrance to the hotel for loading and we have been granted exclusive use of a freight elevator that opens up near the north wall of the dealers’ room. All dealers are urged to take advantage of our lengthy load-in period on Thursday, so PulpFest attendees will find a fully functioning hucksters’ room as soon as the convention opens on Friday, July 26th.

The PulpFest dealers’ room will be open to all registered attendees from 9 AM until 5 PM on July 26th and 27th and from 9 AM until 2 PM on Sunday, July 28th.

Pictured above is an Omaha, Nebraska newsstand from late 1938. Visit ThePulp.Net’s Pulp photos to see more newsstands.

Batman was hardly the first colorful crime fighter to affect the pose of wealthy idler. The pulp magazines beat him to that characterization by a quarter century. Bruce Wayne simply joined a fraternity whose members already included Jimmie Dale, Lamont Cranston, Richard Wentworth, and Richard Curtis Van Loan, to name just a few. But great wealth and social prominence were not the only traits shared by these men, as Ed will point out.

The presentation will also include latter-day examples of hero-pulp concepts that became embedded in American popular culture. One example is 24‘s Jack Bauer, who shares with pulpdom’s Operator #5 the distinction of being a government agent working outside the system to combat terrorists seeking to inflict grave harm on the United States with apocalyptic weapons.

The Ancestors of Batman is scheduled to begin at 4:30 PM, is open to the public (click here for directions), and will set the tone for the many informative and entertaining programs scheduled for this year’s PulpFest.

Let the Voting Begin

Final Munsey AwardJune 16, 2013–The PulpFest Organizing Committee is pleased to announce that thirteen individuals were nominated by their peers for the 2013 Munsey Award. In the interest of manageability, the final nominee list was pared down to the eight individuals who received the most nominations. This year, no one was nominated for the elite Rusty Hevelin Service Award.

The following nominees will be forwarded to a committee made up of all the living Lamont, Munsey, and Rusty Award winners who will select the person to receive the 2013 Munsey: Charles Ardai, Randy Cox, Steve Miller, Laurie Powers, Garyn Roberts, J. Barry Traylor, George Vanderburgh, and Dan Zimmer. You’ll find further details about each nominee on the 2013 Award Nominees page of our website.

Others nominated for this year’s award include William G. Contento, Chris Kalb, Phil Stephensen-Payne, Celina Summers, and Howard Wright. Congratulations to all thirteen nominees.

The recipient of the 2013 Munsey Award, a limited edition print (pictured above) designed by artist and pulp enthusiast David Saunders, will be announced on July 27th as part of the Saturday evening programming, open to all PulpFest 2013 registrants.

The Pulps After Fu Manchu

Wu Fang 36-03Tall, thin with lizard-green eyes, yellow robe and black cap embroidered with coral bead, Fu Manchu was the very picture of warped genius. Such unusual potions as spiders, scorpions and plague-carrying tsetse flies were just part of Fu’s prescription to foreshorten the white race’s actuarial expectations. Master of  super  science and creative  toxicology, he . . . was the Yellow Peril.”

June 17, 2013–Although it is believed that Kaiser Wilhelm coined the term “Yellow Peril,” it was Sax Rohmer who profited most from the idea, largely through the villainous Dr. Fu Manchu. Little wonder that countless pulp writers, from Walter B. Gibson and Norvell W. Page to Robert E. Howard and George Worts, turned to the devil doctor to find inspiration for their lurid pulp tales.

To begin PulpFest‘s celebration of the 100th anniversary of Sax Rohmer’s infamous creation, Rick Lai looks at “The Pulp Descendents of Fu Manchu,” beginning at 8 PM on Thursday, July 25th in the Fairfield Room located on the second floor of the Hyatt Regency Columbus. Rick will discuss the influence of Sax Rohmer’s devil doctor on the pulps with a look at villains such as Wu Fang, Shiwan Khan, The Blue Scorpion from Peter the Brazen, and Robert E. Howard’s Skullface and Erlik Khan.

Best known for his articles expanding on Philip José Farmer’s Wold Newton Universe concepts, recently collected by Altus Press as Rick Lai’s Secret Histories: Daring Adventurers, Rick Lai’s Secret Histories: Criminal Masterminds, Chronology of Shadows: A Timeline of The Shadow’s Exploits and The Revised Complete Chronology of Bronze, Rick lives in New York. His short fiction has been collected in Shadows of the Opera (Wild Cat Books, 2011) and two upcoming Black Coat Press collections to be printed this year–Shadows of the Opera: Retribution in Blood and Sisters of the Shadows: The Cagliostro Curse.

Hutchison, Don. It’s Raining Corpses in Chinatown. Mercer Island, WA: Starmont House (1991).

Jerome Rozen’s menacing cover art for the March 1936 issue of Popular Publication’s The Mysterious Wu Fang.

From Pulp Page to Silver Screen

Spider's Web 3June 19, 2013–Blood ‘n’ Thunder editor Ed Hulse explores the pulp-to-movie connection in his PulpFest presentation Hollywood and the Hero Pulps, one of several pre-convention programs scheduled for Thursday, July 25th, at 9 PM.

Motion-picture incarnations of pulp magazine protagonists date back to the medium’s earliest days. Moviegoers of the nickelodeon era—the pre-World War I years—were treated to cinematic adaptations of Short Stories’ Hamilton Cleek and The Popular Magazine’s Terrence O’Rourke, among others. Tom Mix became the industry’s top Western star on the strength of his 1920 portrayal of Max Brand’s Whistlin’ Dan Barry. And master detective Nick Carter, who successfully made the transition from dime novel to pulp magazine, appeared on screens both in the U.S. and overseas in several sets of short subjects produced between 1908 and 1927.

With the coming of talkies and the emergence of Hollywood as the world’s filmmaking capital, pulp fiction became an even more frequent source of story material. Hundreds of movies released during the Thirties, Forties and Fifties—feature films and short subjects alike—were made from yarns originally printed in rough-paper periodicals.

As Blood ‘n’ Thunder readers know, Ed is the leading authority on pulp-related movies, having researched and written about them for decades. His PulpFest presentation will touch on many, but concentrate on those adapted from hero pulps, with special emphasis on such serials as The Spider’s Web (1938), The Shadow (1940), and The Spider Returns (1941). He’ll present little-known, behind-the-scenes info gleaned in part from his own interviews with people who worked on these episodic epics, including Victor Jory (who played the serial Shadow) and Iris Meredith (who played Nita in The Spider’s Web). Ed will address the rumor that Columbia Pictures planned a G-8 and His Battle Aces serial for 1939 release, and he’ll also report what little is known about the proposed Republic chapter plays that would have featured Doc Savage and Nick Carter.

This program, leading into the screening of Chapters One through Five of The Spider’s Web, promises to get PulpFest’s 2013 hero-pulp tribute off to a fascinating start.

Kenneth Duncan as Ram Singh reads an issue of The Spider in this publicity photo for the 1938 Columbia Pictures movie serial, The Spider’s Web.

The Spider’s Web

Spider's WebJune 21, 2013–Beginning at 10 PM on Thursday, July 25th, PulpFest 2013 will present the fifteen-chapter Columbia Pictures movie serial, The Spider’s Web. Released in 1938 and starring Warren Hull as Richard Wentworth, the “Master of Men,” and Iris Meredith as his beloved Nita Van Sloan, The Spider’s Web is today considered to be one of the greatest chapter plays ever filmed. PulpFest will show the serial in its entirety over three nights.

Columbia Pictures released its first cliffhanger serial in 1937. Jungle Menace and its immediate successors, The Mysterious Pilot (also 1937) and The Secret of Treasure Island (1938), were independently produced by the Weiss brothers, Poverty Row denizens with roots in the motion-picture industry going back to the early silent-movie days. Their serials were competent but cheaply made and uninspiring. Columbia executive Irving Briskin surmised that for the company to capture a significant share of the chapter-play market, it would have to make serials in house, and invest them with more “production value” than the Weiss brothers could provide on their shoestring budgets.

Briskin began negotiating for screen rights to popular characters from other media. In short order he secured The Spider from Popular Publications. He then assigned the property to newly hired producer Jack Fier, lured to Columbia from Republic Pictures, then turning out the industry’s finest serials and grade-B Westerns. Granted a generous budget (more than twice what the Weiss brothers spent on their chapter plays), Fier undertook the daunting task of bringing one of pulpdom’s most popular heroes to the screen—and, by extension, establishing Columbia as a formidable competitor in the arena of episodic epics.

As serial historian Ed Hulse will explain in his PulpFest presentation on movie adaptations of hero pulps, Fier’s first chapter play went into production as The Spider—Master of Men. As a result of careful writing (with editorial input from Norvell Page, chronicler of the Spider’s pulp-magazine adventures), this Columbia serial maintained an unusally high degree of fidelity to its source material. Jack Fier’s attention to detail and relatively liberal expenditure of money paid off, and after some last-minute tinkering (the result of Production Code administrators complaining to Columbia about the serial’s high body count) the newly retitled The Spider’s Web went into release in late October of 1938, eliciting mostly favorable reviews and generating more box-office revenue than the previous two Weiss serials combined.

Never commercially released in a home-video format, The Spider’s Web has nonetheless been available for many years in “grey market” editions of varying quality. PulpFest has obtained the best version currently in circulation and will offer all 15 high-octane chapters to convention attendees in five-episode increments spread out over three nights.

Above is a two-color advertising bill for the 1947 re-release of The Spider’s Web in Australia. To learn more about this great movie serial and its sequel, please visit The Spider Returns website. You’ll find a link to the “serials” section in the site’s menu. For a five-minute preview of the chapterplay, visit The Serial Squadron’s Action Scenes from Pulp Serial The Spider’s Web. You’ll also find a link to our The Spider’s Web preview under the “Connections” section of our home page.

The Sheriff of Buzzard Gap

Pete Rice 33-11June 23, 2013–When the powers at Street & Smith saw what a gold mine they had in The Shadow Magazine, they began laying plans for a raft of companion titles, selecting as their themes four top pulp genres–adventure, detective, aviation and Western. The first two were covered when the publisher released Doc Savage and Nick Carter early in 1933. Their aviation title, Bill Barnes, Air Adventurer, was held back until the beginning of the next year. But as soon as circulation figures demonstrated the new single-character titles to be winners, Street & Smith launched its Western hero pulp, Pete Rice Magazine. Its first issue was dated November 1933.

Street & Smith Publications, Inc., the oldest and foremost fiction-publishing house in America, take pleasure in presenting this first issue of Pete Rice Magzine to their discriminating readers. It is not “just another magazine,” but a publication which has been a long time in developing, and one which is aimed at the new, modern trend of public taste.

In this magazine you will feel the real pulse of the great West as it actually exists. The scenes and action will be familiar to all those who know of the West, and will be instructive to those who do not. The characters will live and breathe through these pages as no others have, and they will give you more entertainment than you have ever deemed possible from fiction before.

“Pistol Pete” Rice was the sheriff of Buzzard Gap, Arizona—a clean-living, non-swearing, alcohol-avoiding paragon of frontier virtues and terror to outlaws—who still lived with his mother. He was backed by two trusty deputies—300-pound giant William Alamo Butler, better known as “Teeny,” and the town’s combination barber and medico, Lawrence Michael Hicks, colloquially known as “Misery.” Pete rode a sorrel horse named Sonny and was sometimes accompanied by a dog called Vulcan.

This hard-riding trio, operated in the never-never land of the Pulp West, a vague, undated era in the magazine’s early issues. As the series progressed, the stories took on the quaint qualities of a 1930s Hollywood Western film, where the sheriff and his posse would start out in an automobile and switch to horseback when the terrain got too rocky for rubber. In one story, Pistol Pete hopped a plane to Chicago to get his man.

By trying to have the West both ways, the magazine had a short lifespan. It folded in 1936 after just 32 issues. The author of all the Pete Rice novels was Ben Conlon, writing as Austin Gridley. Afterward, Conlon took the series to Wild West Weekly, where Pete encountered other S&S buckaroos such as Sonny Tabor. Eventually, Pete’s creator was replaced by other writers hidden by the Gridley house name. The series finally petered out in 1939 after some fifty adventures—not counting a short-lived radio program. Fans best remember Pete Rice Magazine because it shared the same cover artists as Doc Savage. Walter M. Baumhofer painted the cover art for both series until Robert G. Harris took them off his hands in time for Pete Rice‘s finale.

Although Pete Rice Magazine ran for less than three years, it paved the way for other Western character pulps, beginning with Ranger Publications’ The Masked Rider Western Magazine in the spring of 1934 and later that same year, Popular Publications’ Mavericks. The longest-lived Western pulp hero, Jim Hatfield, would debut in the October 1936 issue of Texas Rangers. Standard Publications’ “Lone Wolf” hero would ride the range for 206 issues, heading into the sunset with its February 1958 number. Among the hero pulps, only The Shadow Magazine appeared more often.

Pistol Pete was the last of the pulp heroes of 1933—seven in all. From July 25th-28th, join PulpFest in Columbus, Ohio as we celebrate these characters who had “nothing to fear, but fear itself” during those dark days of The Great Depression when the great pulp heroes were born.

Many thanks to Will Murray, PulpFest 2013 special guest, for his many contributions to this article.

Powers, Laurie. “Two Pulp Hunks: Pete Rice and Sonny Tabor.” Laurie’s Wild West for 11/03/09.

Street & Smith Publications, Inc. “Announcement.” Pete Rice Magazine for November 1933.

The great Walter M. Baumhofer contributed the cover art for the first issue of Pete Rice Magazine, pictured above.

The Black Bat, the Forgotten Hero?

Black Bat 33-10June 24, 2013–There was an eighth single-character pulp that debuted in 1933. Black Bat Detective Mysteries began with its October 1933 number and ran for a total of six issues, ending in the spring of 1934. The magazine’s lead novels featured a character called the Black Bat (not to be confused with the Black Bat that appeared in Standard’s Black Book Detective Magazine beginning in 1939).

Created by Murray Leinster, the Black Bat, whose real name was never revealed, was an omniscient amateur detective who worked closely with the police. The character was more along the lines of a defective detective rather than a pulp hero. Although technically Black Bat Detective Mysteries was a single-character magazine, it more resembled a detective pulp. Published by a small outfit out of New York City, Berryman Press, and given its limited run, the magazine had little impact on the pulp market.

The cover to the first issue of Black Bat Detective Mysteries, reproduced above by moviepostershop.com, was created by John A. Coughlin.

Countdown to PulpFest

shadow_193112June 25, 2013–Today, PulpFest 2013 is exactly one month away. It will begin on Thursday, July 25th, at about 4 PM when our dealers will begin setting up their exhibitions for the hucksters’ room opening on Friday morning at 9 PM. Early registration for all members will start right outside the dealers’ room at 6 PM. And our programming will begin at 8 PM that evening.

In one half-hour, PulpFest will begin counting down the days to the convention’s start on our Facebook site by taking a look at the pulps that were inspired by the “hero pulp explosion of 1933.” Every day for the next month, we will try to post a couple of the pulps that followed The Phantom Detective, Nick Carter, Doc Savage, The Lone Eagle, G-8 and His Battle Aces, The Spider, and Pete Rice Magaine, the seven hero pulps that will be 80 years old in 2013. We’ll try to schedule these posts to go online around noon in the days ahead.

First up will be Bill Barnes, Air Adventurer and Secret Agent “X.” We’ll be offering capsule histories of each pulp as well as a peek at an historic issue (such as the one above, the first appearance of The Shadow on the cover of The Shadow Magazine). So be sure to “like” PulpFest on Facebook and ask for our posts to be delivered to your personal Facebook page.

Later on today, we’ll begin posting snippets of our Facebook posts on the hero pulps to our Twitter page. It’s very easy to “follow” the PulpFest account on Twitter. So what are you waiting for? Our “tweets” we’ll probably go up around 4-5 PM each day.

And remember to keep visit the PulpFest homepage for news about our plans for the 2013 convention. Every few days, we’ll have posts detailing our programming in the month ahead. And as convention time approaches, the posts will be appearing more often to make sure you have all the goods about “Summer’s Great Pulp Con.”

Another way to keep abreast of things PulpFest is by subscribing to our “email list.” You can do so very easily by scrolling down to small gray box on the home page. Just fill in the required information and you will soon be on your way.

We look forward to seeing you at the Hyatt Regency in Columbus, Ohio in one month. We’ll be there from July 25 – 28 for PulpFest 2013.

The Shadow appeared for the first time on the cover of his own magazine with the pulp’s December 1931 number. Only his shadow had appeared on each of the previous two issues. There was no sign of him on either of the first two numbers of the long-running hero pulp magazine. The Shadow Magazine ran for a total of 325 issues (the most of any hero pulp), beginning with its April 1931 number and running through the Summer 1949 issue.

The Shadow Magazine was the inspiration for the “hero pulp explosion of 1933″ and for all the hero pulps that followed. In 2011, PulpFest saluted the magazine’s 80th annivesary.

Philip José Farmer’s Doc Savage

HALJune 25, 2013–Since 2011, PulpFest has hosted FarmerCon, a convention within a convention. FarmerCon began in Peoria, Illinois, the hometown of Grand Master of Science Fiction Philip José Farmer. Originally a gathering of Farmer fans figuratively, and literally, right outside Phil’s back door, FarmerCon offered presentations, dinners, and even picnics at the author’s house.

After the passing of Phil and Bette Farmer in 2009, it was decided to take FarmerCon on the road to broaden its horizons. By holding  the convention alongside events like PulpFest, Farmer fans get a variety of programming and a room full of pulp and book dealers to enjoy. This year, PulpFest is once again pleased to welcome FarmerCon VIII to the Hyatt Regency Columbus.

As it has every year since 2011, FarmerCon will provide some of PulpFest’s evening programming. On Friday, July 26th, at 7:30 PM, our FarmerCon friends turn their attention toward the Grand Master‘s work related to Doc Savage with a panel entitled His Apocalyptic Life, Escape from Loki, and The Mad Goblin.

The earliest of the three works, The Mad Goblin, was first published in 1970, paired with The Lord of the Trees as half of an Ace Double. Both novels were sequels to an earlier work, A Feast Unknown, that introduced Lord Grandrith, a thinly disguised Tarzan, and a “man of bronze” known as Doc Caliban. In Feast, Grandrith and Caliban learn that a powerful secret society known as The Nine has manipulated their lives. The two heroes go to war against their tormentors: The Mad Goblin tells the story from the point of view of Doc Caliban, while The Lord of the Trees presents Lord Grandrith’s version.

Although he published over fifty novels and 100 short stories during his career, Philip José Farmer may be remembered best for his Wold Newton Family. According to the author, the radiation from a meteorite that landed near the village of Wold Newton caused mutations in the villagers’ descendants, making them smarter, stronger, and more driven than most. Including among the offspring was Lord Greystoke, Sherlock Holmes, Sam Spade, Fu Manchu, and Dr. James Clarke Wildman, Jr., best known as Doc Savage. Much of Doc Savage: His Apocalyptic Life, first published by Doubleday in 1973, is devoted to this idea.

The last of Farmer’s works of bronze was Escape from Loki, published by Bantam Books in 1991. Shot down behind enemy lines during World War I, sixteen-year-old Clark Savage, Jr. finds himself in a German baron’s notorious escape-proof prison. Here Doc and his future aids come together to match wits and derring-do against the sinister baron, who Doc believes is intent on wielding a weapon of mass destruction that could very well mean the end of freedom and victory for the Kaiser.

Moderator Art Sippo, author of Sun Koh: Heir of Atlantis, a 2010 Pulp Factory Award nominee for Best Pulp Novel, and his panelists will dissect and analyze the Grand Master‘s contributions to the Doc Savage mythos. Joining Art will be Christopher Paul Carey, the co-author with Philip José Farmer of Gods of Opar: Tales of Lost Khokarsa, and the author of Exiles of Kho, a prelude to the Khokarsa series; Rick Lai, well known for his articles expanding on Farmer’s Wold Newton Universe concepts, recently collected into four volumes by Altus Press; Win Scott Eckert, the co-author with Philip José Farmer of The Evil in Pemberley House, and the author of its forthcoming sequel, The Scarlet Jaguar, featuring Doc Wildman’s daughter Pat; and John Allen Small, an award-winning journalist, columnist, and fiction writer whose work includes “The Bright Heart of Eternity,” a tribute to Edgar Rice Burroughs and Philip José Farmer, and “Into Time’s Abyss,” anthologized in The Worlds Of Philip José Farmer 2: Of Dust And Souls.

Meteor House will be premiering a new, expanded edition of Doc Savage: His Apocalyptic Life at PulpFest 2013. Featuring dust jacket art by Joe DeVito (pictured above) and essays by Win Scott Eckert, John Allen Small, Keith Howell, Rick Lai, Art Sippo, Christopher Paul Carey, and current Doc Savage writer Will Murray, it will be available as a deluxe hardcover. Altus Press will be publishing the softcover edition. It will be available at PulpFest through Mike Chomko, Books.

Dealers Tables Are Going Fast!

PulpFest 2013 FlyerJune 27, 2013–With only four weeks remaining before the 2013 PulpFest begins, convention chairman Jack Cullers reports that most available exhibit space has already been booked, and that dealers who’ve not yet registered for the convention should reserve their tables immediately lest they risk being shut out.

As last year’s PulpFest attendees know, our huckster room at the Hyatt is far more spacious than the one we had previously at the Ramada Plaza.  But in addition to welcoming back some of our regular merchants who couldn’t make the 2012 show, we’ve picked up several new dealers this year.  And don’t forget about our generous offer for dealers who stay at the Hyatt Regency Columbus during the convention. They will receive one free table for every two that they rent, plus $10 off their three-day membership. So the remaining space is shrinking fast.  As of this writing we can still accommodate more exhibitors, but booking time is getting short.

Dealers interested in selling their wares to PulpFest‘s serious buyers and long-time collectors should get in touch with Jack as soon as possible. You can reach him via email by writing to jack@pulpfest.com or by regular mail at 1272 Cheatham Way, Bellbrook, OH 45305. Please visit our registration page and take advantage of our downloadable registration form and if you like, our Paypal Order page to reserve your table space today! Please remember to ask for your free table if you will be staying at the Hyatt Regency Columbus and will be renting two or more tables.

Doc Savage & the Pulp Heroes of 1933

Doc Savage33-03June 28, 2013–Eighty years ago, following the astounding success of The Shadow Magazine, the pulp industry created a tremendous splash in publishing by releasing a wave of single-character magazines. The Phantom Detective, Nick Carter, Doc Savage, The Lone Eagle, G-8 and His Battle Aces, The Spider, and Pete Rice Magazine all debuted in 1933, despite the economic hardships wrought by The Great Depression.

The Shadow Magazine was introduced to readers by Street & Smith Publishing in early 1931. Employing the talents of author Walter B. Gibson, the magazine proved an instant hit. Planned as a quarterly, this first “hero” pulp became a monthly after just two issues. A year later, The Shadow Magazine became a semi-monthly, appearing twice each month until early 1943.

By 1932, Street & Smith was planning other single-character pulps, hoping to emulate the high-flying Shadow Magazine. Other publishing houses also noticed the strong sales experienced by Gibson’s “Dark Avenger.” As Henry Steeger of Popular Publications stated: “At this point in pulp history, individual titles became very popular, so we decided to try out a few . . .” And so began what we now call, “The Hero Pulp Explosion of 1933.”

On Friday, July 26th at 8:30 PM in the Fairfield Room of the Hyatt Regency Columbus, Ed Hulse, editor and publisher of Blood ‘n’ Thunder, and a panel of pulp historians will take a look at Doc Savage and the Pulp Heroes of 1933. Joining Ed will be Nick Carr, one of the elders of the pulp community, who actually read The Spider and other pulps fresh off the newsstand, and has written countless articles about pulp heroes both known and little known; Don Hutchison, who also had the opportunity to buy pulps at a news agency and has likewise written many articles on the history of the pulps as well as the Stoker Award nominee, The Great Pulp Heroes (a “must-read” book for fans of the hero pulps); a child of the sixties when he first discovered “The Man of Bronze” and now today’s “Kenneth Robeson,” Will Murray, yet another author of numerous books and articles concerning the pulps; and Garyn Roberts, professor of English and popular culture studies and unabashed pulp fan and editor of some of the best collections from the pulps including The Compleat Adventures of the Moon Man, The Magical Mysteries of Don Diavolo, and other titles will join Ed to discuss the causes and effects of the “Hero Pulp Explosion of 1933.”

Once again, Walter Baumhofer’s masterful cover to the first issue of Doc Savage Magazine, illustrating “The Man of Bronze.”

Walter Baumhofer: King of the Pulps

Adventure35-08-15July 1, 2013–Who was the “King of the Pulps?” Some say it was H. Bedford Jones, while others claim the title for Frederick Faust, better known as Max Brand. But to the young readers who devoured the pulp magazines and “delighted in his four-color depictions of action and adventure,” the one and only “King of the Pulps” was Walter M. Baumhofer.

When an injury at age fourteen left him unable to perform manual labor, Baumhofer began to intently study art. A scholarship allowed him to attend the prestigious Pratt Institute where he was able to study under Dean Cornwell and H. Winfield Scott. While still a student, he began his art career drawing pen and ink story illustrations for Adventure Magazine. By 1926, he was contributing covers to Clayton Publications and, soon thereafter, to Harold Hersey’s line of pulps. Street & Smith signed him to a contract in 1932 to paint a cover each week for their pulps. Around the same time, he was sought out by Popular Publications to provide cover art for their line of magazines, and so began his reign as the “King of the Pulps.”

Baumhofer labored for the pulp market for just over a decade, painting about 550 covers for a wide variety of titles including Ace High, Adventure, Detective Tales, Dime Mystery Magazine, Doc Savage, Fire Fighters, Gangland Stories, The Spider, Spy Stories, Western Story Magazine, and others. He moved into the slick market and advertising art in the late thirties, contributing work to American Weekly, Collier’s, Cosmopolitan, Esquire, Redbook, Women’s Day, and other magazines. In later years, his paintings graced the covers of Argosy, Outdoor Life, and Sports Afield and his portrait, landscape, and Western art were exhibited in fine art galleries nationwide.

At 9:30 PM on Friday, July 26th, David Saunders will present a biographical profile of Walter Baumhofer’s life story as well as the artist’s fascinating family history. He will exhibit never-before-seen visual documents from the personal world of this pulp art master.  Walter was a close friend of the presenter’s father, Norman Saunders, and as such David was personally acquainted with the artist for over thirty years. Baumhofer was a sensationally colorful character and David Saunders looks forward to sharing many amusing anecdotes and incidents that will help to promote a greater awareness of this legendary artist.

American Art Archives. Walter Baumhofer (1904-1987).

Gunnison, John P. (2007). Walter M. Baumhofer: Pulp Art Masters. Silver Spring, MD: Adventure House.

Saunders, David (2009). Walter Baumhofer: Field Guide to Wild American Pulp Artists.

Walter M. Baumhofer contributed the front cover art to the August 15, 1935 Adventure, depicted above.

Free at the Hyatt Regency

Doc Savage 42-07July 4, 2013–On this day when we celebrate freedom, PulpFest would like to remind everyone about our generous offers for members staying at the Hyatt Regency Columbus in late July. The hotel itself will provide free wireless Internet service to all guestrooms and complimentary parking at the Chestnut Street Garage, located one block south of the hotel and connected via a covered skywalk.

And to reward loyal attendees for supporting the convention by staying three nights at the host hotel, PulpFest is happy to offer a ten-dollar rebate redeemable through our registration desk. To additionally thank our dealers boarding at the Hyatt Regency, PulpFest is very pleased to supply a third table free of charge for every two tables rented in our huckster’s room. That’s three tables for the price of two, or six for the price of four. The massive size of the Regency Ballroom enables us to provide this extra exhibit space to loyal PulpFest dealers, for whose continued support we are most grateful. Remember, this special offer is good only to dealers staying at the host hotel. You can learn more about these fantastic offers by visiting our registration page.

Rooms at the Hyatt are selling fast. In late June, the hotel added twenty additional rooms with double beds to our already substantial block. The Hyatt’s management has assured us that they will continuously monitor the situation and add rooms as long as they remain available. However, it is advised to place your reservation sooner rather than later as availability cannot be guaranteed; rooms with king-sized beds have already sold out. Click on the Hyatt link in the first paragraph or call 1-888-421-1442 or 1-614-463-1234.

PulpFest would like to thank all of our members who will be staying at the Hyatt Regency Columbus. By doing so, you are supporting our convention by helping us to control the sizable costs required to mount this annual event.

At this point we would also urge all dealers to take advantage of our generous load-in and set-up period. There’s a back entrance to the hotel for unloading and we have exclusive use of a freight elevator that opens up behind the hucksters’ room. We feel very strongly that attendees have every right to expect a fully-set-up dealers’ room as soon as the convention opens on Friday. That is why PulpFest would like all exhibitors to set up on Thursday, July 25th, from 4  – 11 PM. Thank you for your cooperation.

For non-exhibiting conventioneers who will be attending PulpFest, please take advantage of our early registration hours from 6 – 8 PM on Thursday, July 25th, right outside the dealers’ room on the third floor of the Hyatt Regency Columbus. We will also be starting our programming at 8 PM.

The PulpFest committee is very excited about our second show in this upscale and conveniently located venue. Our programming is set and, as is always the case this time of year, we’re fielding lots of questions from eager registrants, some of them attending PulpFest for the first time.  It’s going to be a great weekend!

Dr. Fu Manchu & the Yellow Peril

Colliers1913-04-12July 6, 2013–One hundred years ago, Sax Rohmer’s Fu Manchu made his American debut in Collier’s, a five-cent weekly. “The Zayat Kiss” ran in the February 15, 1913 number. Nine more stories featuring Rohmer’s “devil doctor” would appear in Collier’s through June 28, 1913. In September of that year, McBride would release The Insidious Dr. Fu-Manchu, collecting all ten tales into novel form.

Although Sax Rohmer did not create the “yellow peril” genre of pulp fiction, his Fu Manchu stories would greatly influence the bloody pulps. From writers as diverse as Dashiell Hammett, Carroll John Daly, Walter B. Gibson, Norvell W. Page, Arthur J. Burks, Philip Nowlan, H. P. Lovecraft, and Robert E. Howard, pulpsters delivered many a story inspired by Rohmer’s evil genius. Even Robert J. Hogan’s flying spy, G-8, battled oriental evildoers in the author’s fantasy version of the First World War.

At 8 PM on Saturday, July 27th, PulpFest will salute the American centennial of Dr. Fu Manchu with a panel exploring Sax Rohmer’s character and his influence on the pulp fiction of the early twentieth century. Moderated by Blood ‘n’ Thunder editor and publisher, Ed Hulse, the panel will consist of pop culture experts Gene Christie, editor of three collections of Rohmer’s fiction and a leading authority on early American science fiction and fantasy; Win Scott Eckert, known for his work on literary crossovers and chronologies, including Marvel Comics’ Shang-Chi: Master of Kung Fu, a classic series concerning the son of Dr. Fu Manchu; Nathan Madison, author of Anti-Foreign Imagery in American Pulps and Comics, 1920-1960; William Patrick Maynard, authorized by the literary estate of Sax Rohmer to continue the Fu Manchu series; and Will Murray, author of the Wild Adventures of Doc Savage and one of the world’s leading authorities on the pulp era.

The Page of Fu Manchu represents an ongoing effort by scholars and readers around the world to create a definitive Sax Rohmer bibliography, reference and archive. It is edited and maintained by Dr. Lawrence Knapp, an English Professor at Thomas Edison State College, located in Trenton, NJ.

Joseph Clement Coll’s Collier’s cover for April 12, 1913, illustrating “The Call of Siva,” Sax Rohmer’s fifth Fu-Manchu story to be published in the United States.

Hero Pulp Premiums and Promotions

PhantomFriendsPin_nobackJuly 9, 2013–How did pulp magazine publishers keep readers coming back month after month? Of course the best way was to publish excellent stories. Regardless of genre, the leading pulps–Adventure, Astounding Stories, Black Mask, Blue Book, Dime Western, Doc Savage, Love Story, The Shadow, The Spider, Sports Stories, Startling Stories, Weird Tales, Wings–attempted to do just that, issue after issue.

Another method that publishers employed to lure dimes on a regular basis from buyers with thin wallets was to create a club and offer premiums. For a few cents or by clipping coupons from a favorite pulp magazine, a devoted fan could become a member in good standing of the Doc Savage Club, one of the Friends of the Phantom, or Adventure Magazine’s Camp-Fire Club. Also available were rings, pins, and other items such as the Spider Pencil, a celluloid mechanical pencil with rubber eraser of The Spider seal, produced in very limited quantity during 1941-42.

Doc Savage club card

On Saturday, July 27th, at 9 PM, please join PulpFest website designer Chris Kalb in the Fairfield Room located on the second floor of the Hyatt Regency Columbus as he takes us back to a time when a few cents not only bought a pulp magazine filled with thrills, but also an Operator #5 ring, a G-8 Battle Aces Club pin, or a membership in the Green Lama Club. Chris will be presenting Hero Pulp Premiums and Promotions, an event that you cannot afford to miss.

For a look at some other pulp premiums, please visit Pulpster editor Bill Lampkin’s The Pulp.Net website and do a search for “premiums.” Bill has photographs of rings, membership cards, pins, and other items on his highly informative website.

Tonik Auction Continues!

AuctioneerJuly 12, 2013–One of the many highlights of PulpFest is its Saturday night auction. Organized by J. Barry Traylor and a gaggle of enthusiastic volunteers, the auction is always the final programming event of summer’s great pulp con. Any registered member of the convention may submit items to sell at auction as long as they meet the guidelines listed on our Auctions page.

PulpFest is very proud that this year’s auction will include 115 lots made up of approximately 250 books from collector and scholar Al Tonik’s huge library of hardcovers, paperbacks, pulps, dime novels, comic books, fanzines, and reference books. At its 2012 convention, PulpFest sold about seventy percent of the Tonik collection with more than $15,000 bid on a wide range of items. Most of what remains from Al’s library are hard-to-find reference books and author biographies. Over many years, Albert Tonik was one of the leading scholars of pulp history. The winner of a Lamont Award in 1994, Al researched aspects of pulp history previously covered sketchily and loved to share his knowledge with our community.

In addition to the Tonik material, PulpFest will be accepting about 100 lots from registered members of PulpFest 2013. However, due to the substantial amount of Tonik lots, there may be limits on the number of lots that can be offered by each consignee. The sooner you submit your consignment to Mike Chomko (who will be collecting all the auction consignments), the more likely that it will be included in our auction. Mike’s tables will be along the wall, across from the registration desk just inside the entrance to the PulpFest dealers’ room.

For a look at what books will make up the Tonik lots, we are providing an auction spreadsheet. The Tonik lots will be lot numbers 1-30, 56-85, 111-140, and 166-190. The gaps of 25 lots between the Tonik segments represent the 100 lots of consignment material that we will be accepting from PulpFest 2013 members during the actual convention. To examine the spreadsheet, click the “auction spreadsheet” link above.

PulpFest‘s annual Saturday night auction will start at approximately 9:30 PM on July 27th, following the conclusion of Chris Kalb’s presentation, Hero Pulp Premiums and Promotions. Remember to bring your convention badge: your badge number will be used when buying and/or selling during the auction. Our auctioneers will be Adventure House‘s John Gunnison and Joseph Saine, a full-time proprietor of an antique toy shop and licensed auctioneer from northwest Ohio.

If you have any questions concerning the auction or you represent an estate that would like to submit a substantial collection for sale at PulpFest, please contact Barry Traylor via email or at 1767 Crooked Oak Drive, Lancaster, PA 17601.

New Fictioneer . . . Van Allen Plexico

White RocketJuly 14, 2013–Due to a recent, unexpected cancellation by one of our previously announced readers, Van Allen Plexico has graciously consented to fill that hole in our programming schedule.

Van is the award-winning and Amazon.com bestselling author of ten novels and nearly two dozen short stories and novellas, as well as five non-fiction books. His works have included everything from Sherlock Holmes to space opera to 1930s air ace combat to Marvel’s Avengers, though he is best known for his ongoing superhero pulp novel series, Sentinels.

A three-time nominee for Pulp Writer of the Year at PulpArk and a founding editor of the All Pulp news site, he has been published by Airship 27, Pro Se Productions, White Rocket Books, Permuted Press, Red Bud Studios, Maple Street Press, and Rittenhouse Archives, among others. He also hosts the weekly pop culture and New Pulp discussion show, The White Rocket Podcast. In his spare time Van is an Assistant Professor of History and Political Science at Southwestern Illinois College. You can find links to all of his stuff at www.plexico.net.

Join New Fictioneer Van Allen Plexico on Friday, July 26th at 2 PM in the Hyatt Regency’s Fairfield Room where he will be reading “River of Deceit,” from the anthology Monster Aces, and a selection from Lords of Fire, the first novel in a new military science fiction/space opera series entitled The Shattering.

PulpFest Premiers

ChomkoJuly 16, 2013–A number of publishers will be using PulpFest 2013 to roll out new publications for your reading pleasure. One that has caused a substantial stir is Brian Ritt’s Paperback Confidential: Crime Writers of the Paperback EraDebuting from Stark House Press, this reference work features 132 profiles of the men and women who wrote the books that became the backbone of the pulp and paperback era from the 1930s through the 1960s. Paperback Confidential will be available from Mike Chomko, Books, whose tables will be along the wall, right across from the PulpFest registration desk.

Our friends from FarmerCon will also premier a pair of books, both published by Meteor House. First up will be a new, deluxe hardcover edition of Doc Savage: His Apocalyptic Life, Philip José Farmer’s biography of the bronze crusader who fought almost 200 separate battles against the forces of evil. The Meteor House edition will include a brand new foreword by Farmer expert Win Scott Eckert; tributes by other Farmer and Doc experts, including current Doc Savage writer Will Murray; and other bonus materials not seen in previous editions, all wrapped up with jacket art by Joe DeVito. Mike Chomko, Books, the representative of Altus Press at most pulp conventions, will have softcovers of the revised edition on hand.

EckertMeteor House will also be releasing the sequel to Philip José Farmer and Win Scott Eckert’s Wold Newton novel, The Evil in Pemberley House, the story of Patricia Wildman, daughter of one of the greatest heroes of our time–Doc Wildman, the bronze champion of justice. The new book, a limited edition, signed novella by Eckert, is entitled The Scarlet Jaguar, the first in a planned series featuring Pat Wildman & Co.

On Friday, Win will be signing the entire print run  of The Scarlet Jaguar  in the PulpFest dealers’ room. He will also be available to sign any other books people might want to bring up to him. Additional details will be announced at the convention.

Ed Hulse of Murania Press is hoping to have a new issue of Blood ‘n’ Thunder on hand. Of course, everyone knows that BnT is THE journal for aficionados of adventure, mystery, and melodrama in American popular culture of the early 20th century. Ed has a Lamont Award to prove it! Ed also hopes to release the new Blood ‘n’ Thunder Guide to Pulp Fiction at the convention. A newly revised and greatly expanded version of The Blood ‘n’ Thunder Guide to Collecting Pulps, the new edition will significantly augment the original text with new chapters on genres not previously represented as well as other additions.

WordslingersDoc Savage author and noted pulp scholar Will Murray will be selling softcover copies of Wordslingers: An Epitaph for the Western at his table. Murray’s Wordslingers is not only the first in-depth history of the Western pulps, it’s one of the best and most important books on the pulps ever written, perfectly capturing the era, the magazines, and the writers, editors, and agents who helped fill their pages.

Laurie Powers, the granddaughter of Western pulp scribe Paul Powers and creator of the popular Laurie’s Wild West blog, will be selling copies of Hidden Ghosts–a collection of atypical fiction written by her grandfather. Best known for creating the Sonny Tabor and Kid Wolf characters for Wild West Weekly, Paul Powers also wrote in other genres, including horror, historical, noir, romance, and animal stories. A collection of fourteen tales, including four that were previously unpublished, Hidden Ghosts is being released in softcover by Altus Press. Laurie will be glad to sign your copy at the table she will be sharing with PulpFest guest Will Murray.

An award-winning journalist and columnist, FarmerCon attendee John Allen Small will be offering three unique titles at PulpFest. He will have copies of his books, Days Gone By and Something In The Air, both of which contain stories that should be of interest to pulp fans. He will also be selling the recent edition of Pharaoh’s Broker, to which he contributed the Preface. A portion of the proceeds earned on this title will go toward literacy education. For those not familiar with Pharaoh’s Broker, it is an 1899 novel that has been cited as possibly inspiring Edgar Rice Burroughs when he sat down to write Under the Moons of Mars. John will be selling these books at the Meteor House/FarmerCon tables.

Airship 27From their temporary hangar in the PulpFest dealers’ room, Ron Fortier and Rob Davis of Airship 27 will be offering a brand new premium free to anyone who buys two of their books–the beautiful Airship 27 crew patches. They’ll also be releasing the latest issue of All-Star Pulp Comics, featuring the Black Bat, Domino Lady, Ki-Gor, Lance Star and other exciting characters.

Additionally, on Saturday, July 27th, Fortier and Davis will have a couple of author signings at their tables. Frank Schildiner, who has written Black Bat, Ravenwood, and Secret Agent X stories for Airship 27 will be there from 11 AM until noon. Taking over from 2 to 3 PM will by Jim Beard, author of Captain Action: Riddle of the Glowing Men, Sgt. Janus, Spirit-Breaker, and other works. Captain Action will be available at 1/3 off the normal price.

Of course, there will be plenty of other great exhibitors in the PulpFest 2013 dealers’ room who will also be selling exceptional materials. You can learn more about them by visiting Our Dealers‘ page on the PulpFest website. And when you are in Columbus from July 25 -28, be sure to visit them all in the Regency Ballroom on the third floor of the Hyatt Regency. Our dealers’ room will be open from 9 AM to 5 PM on Friday and Saturday and from 9 AM until 2 PM on Sunday.

One Week Left to Go!

PulpFest 2013 FrontJuly 18, 2013–PulpFest 2013 will start on Thursday, July 25th. The dealers’ room will be open only to registered sellers to set up their displays from 4 PM to 11 PM. Ohio State’s Thompson Library will also offer a free lecture on the pulps at 5 PM. Early registration for all convention attendees will take place outside the dealers’ room from 6 PM to 8 PM. Beginning at 8 PM, a full slate of programming will get underway.

Thursday, July 25th

4:00 PM – 11:00 PM – Dealer Set-Up – the dealers’ room will be open only to dealers to assemble their displays

4:30 PM – Ohio State Lecture Series – Ed Hulse, the editor of Blood ‘n’ Thunder, examines “The Ancestors of Batman: Colorful Crime Fighters of Pulp Fiction” at Ohio State’s Thompson Library

6:00 PM – 8:00 PM – Early Registration – general members and dealers will be able to register for PulpFest

Evening Programming

8:00 PM – The Pulp Descendents of Fu Manchu – Rick Lai discusses the influence of Sax Rohmer’s devil doctor on the pulps with a look at villains such as Wu Fang, Shiwan Khan, the Blue Scorpion, and Robert E. Howard’s Skull Face and Erlik Khan

9:00 PM – Hollywood and the Hero Pulps Blood ‘n’ Thunder editor Ed Hulse looks at The Spider’s Web, Columbia Pictures’ classic chapterplay, and Hollywood’s other attempts to bring the pulps to the silver screen

10:00 PM – The Spider’s Web – Chapters 1 – 5 of the 1938 Columbia Pictures movie serial starring Warren Hull as “The Master of Men” and Iris Meredith as his beloved, Nita Van Sloan

Friday, July 26th

9:00 AM – 5 PM – Wheeling and Dealing – the dealers’ room will be open to all

1:00 PM – The New Fictioneers – William Patrick Maynard reads from his forthcoming novel, The Triumph of Fu Manchu

2:00 PM – The New Fictioneers – Van Allen Plexico has more than two dozen books under his belt. One of the leading figures of “New Pulp,” he will be reading from Lords of Fire and “River of Deceit” from Monster Aces

3:00 PM – The New Fictioneers – FarmerCon panelists Win Scott Eckert and John Small offer a variety pack of fiction including John’s tribute to Edgar Rice Burroughs and Philip José Farmer, “The Bright Heart of Eternity”

Evening Programming

7:25 PM – Welcome to PulpFest – Jack Cullers offers an official welcome

7:30 PM – The Mad Goblin, Escape from Loki, and His Apocalyptic Life – Art Sippo leads a discussion of Philip José Farmer’s contributions to the Doc Savage mythos. Panelists include Christopher Paul Carey, Win Scott Eckert, Rick Lai, and John Allen Small

8:30 PM – Doc Savage and the Pulp Heroes of 1933 – Nick Carr, Don Hutchison, Will Murray, and Garyn Roberts join Blood ‘n’ Thunder editor Ed Hulse to discuss eighty years of “The Great Pulp Heroes”

9:30 PM – Walter Baumhofer: King of the Pulps – pulp art historian David Saunders looks at the life and work of the artist who brought The Man of Bronze, The Master of Men, Pete Rice, and other pulp heroes to life

10:30 PM – The Spider’s Web – Chapters 6 – 10 of the 1938 Columbia Pictures serial in which The Spider battles The Octopus, a criminal mastermind bent on crippling the nation through a wave of terror

Saturday, July 27th

9:00 AM – 5 PM – Wheeling and Dealing – the dealers’ room will be open to all

1:00 PM – The Future of New Pulp Fiction – moderator Ron Fortier is joined by five new writers inspired by the pulp fiction of yore – Jim Beard, Win Scott Eckert, Rick Lai, Frank Schildiner, and Art Sippo

2:00 PM – Doc and the King Radio ArchivesRoger Price will be reading from Will Murray’s Skull Island, recently released as an audiobook. Both Will and Roger will be available for questions following the reading

3:00 PM – The New Fictioneers – Jim Beard, a columnist for the Toledo Free Press and a freelance writer, will read from Captain Action: Riddle of the Glowing Men, Monster Earth, and Sgt. Janus: Spirit-Breaker

Evening Programming

7:30 PM – PulpFest 2013 Business Meeting – all members are invited to ask questions and offer suggestions at this session

7:50 PM – 2013 Munsey Award Presentation – Matt Moring of Altus Press will present this year’s Munsey Award

8:00 PM – Fu Manchu and the Yellow Peril Pulps  – Blood ‘n’ Thunder editor Ed Hulse is joined by Gene Christie, Win Scott Eckert, Nathan Madison, William Patrick Maynard, and Will Murray for a discussion of Sax Rohmer’s infamous creation and the character’s influence on the pulps and popular culture

9:00 PM – Hero Pulp Premiums and Promotions – Chris Kalb takes us back to a time when a dime not only bought a pulp magazine filled with thrills, but also a Spider Ring or a membership to Friends of the Phantom

9:30 PM – Saturday Night at the Auction – auctioneers John Gunnison and Joseph Saine complete the sale of pulp researcher Albert Tonik’s substantial collection, plus various lots from the convention’s regular consigners

11:30 PM – The Spider’s Web – Chapters 11 – 15 of the 1938 Columbia Pictures serial directed by James W. Horne and Ray Taylor in which The Spider unmasks the nefarious Octopus and wins the day for the good old USA

Sunday, July 28th

Daytime Schedule

9:00 AM – 2 PM – Wheeling and Dealing – the dealers’ room will be open to all

Donated to PulpFest

F&SF 07-08-13July 20, 2013–As happens every year, PulpFest 2013 is helped in a variety of ways by a large number of organizations whose support we would like to acknowledge. As usual, we will be giving away several books and related items to our attendees and would like to thank the following organizations for their very generous contributions to our convention:

John Huckans and Book Source Magazine for sending copies of the final print issue of their magazine for free distribution at PulpFest.

Engle Publishing for sending copies of The Paper & Advertising Collectors’ Marketplace for distribution free of charge at PulpFest.

The Estate of Rusty Hevelin for its donation of two dozen copies of science-fiction author Joe Haldeman’s Mindbridge.

Gordon Van Gelder and Fantasy & Science Fiction, the award-winning magazine that celebrated its sixtieth anniversary in 2009, for donating a large quantity of back issues to give to our members.

Tom Brown and Radio Archives, the leading producer of old-time radio collections and pulp audiobooks, for sending nearly 500 sample CDs of their superb readings of old pulp yarns as well as six complete audiobooks to be used as door prizes.

Greg Shepard and Stark House Press, publisher of some of the finest mystery and supernatural fiction of the past hundred years, for their very generous donation of several cartons of their top-notch books.

Charles F. Millhouse and Stormgate Publishing for sending ten autographed copies of Captain Hawklin and the Skyhook Pirates, a novel written in the style of a 1940s cliffhanger. We’ll be giving them away during our New Fictioneers readings.

We’d also like to thank Acorn Bookshop, Around About Books, Blue Jacket Books, Bookery Fantasy, Dark Star Books, Duncan Books, The Dust Jacket, Karen Wickliff Books, Mavericks Cards and Comics, and the many book fairs and conventions that helped us promote “Summer’s Great Pulp Con.”

The image above is from the July/August 2013 issue of Fantasy & Science Fiction featuring a front cover by Kent Bash and a great new story by Rus Wornom, an author with strong pulp adventure roots. “In the Mountains of Frozen Fire” is the first story in a projected series set on an island in the Gulf of Mexico where time has stood still and the pulp heroes of yesterday are still alive. Included with the story are artifacts–photos, sidebars, excerpts from fictional books and pulps, telegrams, and vintage postcards–that add to the illusion that what you are actually reading is quite real.Since 1983, Rus has been published in Omni, Premier, F&SF, Gauntlet, and Storyboard. He also wrote three pseudonymous novels for TSR back in the ’90s. If you don’t subscribe to F&SF, you can pick up the July/August issue at Barnes & Noble and similar stores.

PulpFest Begins Thursday!

PulpFest 2013 FrontJuly 22, 2013–PulpFest 2013 will begin on Thursday evening, July 25th, with a salute to the 100th anniversary of the first American appearance of Dr. Fu-Manchu and a presentation on Hollywood’s attempts to introduce the hero pulps to the silver screen. Chapters 1-5 of the classic movie serial, The Spider’s Web, based on the classic Popular Publications’ pulp, will also be shown. The remaining chapters will run on Friday and Saturday nights.

As a prelude to the start of Thursday’s convention, Ohio State University’s Thompson Library will be hosting a lecture by Blood ‘n’ Thunder editor and PulpFest committee member Ed Hulse. Entitled “The Ancestors of Batman: Colorful Crime Fighters of Pulp Fiction,” Ed’s lecture will begin at 4:30 PM. Due to a recent schedule change, the university asked PulpFest to move the talk up by a half hour. Click on the lecture title for additional details about Ed’s presentation.

Friday, we’ll celebrate the 80th anniversary of “The Hero Pulp Explosion of 1933.” In that special year, The Phantom Detective, Doc Savage, The Spider, and four other hero pulps were introduced to pulp readers. PulpFest attendees will also learn about the life and work of Walter M. Baumhofer, the artist who was known as “The King of the Pulps.”

Saturday, PulpFest returns to Dr. Fu-Manchu with a look at the devil doctor’s influence on the pulp fiction that followed his introduction to the reading public. The night will continue with a lively and interesting auction of pulps, books, comics, artwork, and much, much more.

For additional details on all of our afternoon and evening programming events, please visit our Programming page for further details. Each entry is linked to a post that provides further information on that event. Just click on the event’s title.

Early indications are that we will surpass last year’s show both in our number of registrations and rooms booked at the hotel. We are hoping that this year’s con will be our biggest and best yet. For some time, we’ve been receiving registrations every day, many from people who have never attended PulpFest before. If you’ve been thinking about attending, but have yet to pull the trigger, you probably should call the hotel and make your reservation immediately. You can do so by calling 1-888-421-1442 or 1-614-463-1234 or by clicking our link to the Hyatt Regency Columbus on our home page under “Book a Room.” Please be sure to mention PulpFest when placing your reservation.

The Hyatt Regency is located at 350 North High Street in downtown Columbus, Ohio. The hotel is south of I-670, just 15-20 minutes from Columbus International Airport. In the heart of the active Arena District, the Hyatt Regency is just a few minutes’ walk from the trendy Short North Arts District. There are shops and restaurants galore right outside the hotel’s entrance. Click here for directions.

For those who will be staying at the Hyatt Regency during the convention, parking is free at the Chestnut Street Garage, one block south of the hotel. The garage is connected to the hotel via an enclosed and covered walkway. For those visiting PulpFest for the day, you can also use the Chestnut Street Garage. Rates vary based on time, but $9 will get you 12 hours of parking. Additional parking is available at the Convention Center underground garage. Again, rates are time-based and $14 will get you parking for 12 hours. At the Convention Center’s east and north lots, you get 12 hours of parking for $11. Click here for a more detailed look at parking near the Hyatt Regency. Alternately, if you don’t mind walking, more inexpensive options abound. Click here for an interactive parking map of Columbus. Just search using the hotel’s address and you’re good to go.

From 4 PM to 11 PM on Thursday, the dealers’ room will be open for exhibitors to set up their displays. During set-up, dealers are asked to arrange their displays and, upon completion, cover them up and then depart the room. No buying, selling, or trading will be permitted during Thursday’s set-up. Dealers should please refrain from all such activity.

At this point, we urge all of our dealers to take full advantage of our generous load-in and set-up period. While unloading and transporting your goods should be very easy–there’s a back entrance to the hotel for loading and we have been granted exclusive use of a freight elevator–there is bound to be a certain amount of disorientation as folks negotiate their way around the Hyatt. We feel very strongly that attendees have every right to expect a fully-set-up hucksters’ room as soon as the convention opens on Friday, which is why PulpFest has always offered a lengthy load-in period on Thursday. We welcome your cooperation in this aspect of the show.

Early registration for the general membership will also take place on Thursday, beginning at 6 PM right outside of the dealers’ room located in the Regency Ballroom on the hotel’s third floor. All members, dealers included, can pick up their registration packets at this time. For those of you who have not yet registered for PulpFest, Thursday evening will be an ideal time to do so. Three-day memberships will be available for $35. Single day memberships costing $15 per day will also be available. Please visit our Registration page for further details. Please note that tonight is the last night for advance registrations. Our Paypal page will shut down around 10 PM tonight.

The dealers’ room will open to all members on Friday, July 26th at 9 AM and remain open until 5 PM. It will be open from 9 AM to 5 PM on Saturday and from 9 AM to 2 PM on Sunday. Dealers will be allowed to enter the room approximately fifteen minutes prior to opening each day in order to prepare their displays.

All PulpFest attendees will be able to submit material for inclusion in the Saturday Night Auction. For additional information, please visit our Auctions page under “Programming” or contact Barry Traylor via email at barry@pulpfest.com. In addition to 115 auction lots drawn from the collection of pulp scholar Albert Tonik, we will be accepting a total of 100 additional lots from registered members of PulpFest 2013. However, due to the substantial amount of material remaining from the Tonik collection, there may be limits on the number of lots that can be offered by each consignee. The sooner you submit your consignment to Mike Chomko, the more likely that it will be included in our auction. Mike’s tables will be along the wall, across from the registration desk just inside the entrance to the PulpFest dealers’ room. A link to a spreadsheet listing the Tonik lots is also available on our Auctions page.

For those attendees who would like to ship their purchases to their homes, PulpFest 2013 has arranged for a local UPS provider to be available at the hotel on Sunday, July 28th, from 10 AM to noon. Further information is available on our FAQ  page.

The entire PulpFest 2013 organizing committee–Mike Chomko, Jack Cullers, Ed Hulse, and Barry Traylor–is looking forward to seeing you all in just a few days. Have a safe trip to Columbus.

PulpFest’s Hero Pulp Primer @ www.facebook.com/PulpFest

31-04a ShadowJuly 23, 2013–For the last month at our Facebook site, we’ve been spotlighting the single-character magazines that followed the “hero-pulp explosion of 1933,” one of the themes of this year’s PulpFest. All told, we have discussed 54 magazines, most published to highlight the adventures of a single character within their pulpwood pages. The series has garnered many “likes” since it began on June 26, 2013.

This is not to say that the curious reader cannot find continuing characters elsewhere in the rough paper magazines: Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Tarzan and John Carter of Mars ran in The All-Story, Argosy All-Story Weekly, Blue Book, and other pulps; Johnston McCulley’s Zorro can be found in All-Story Weekly, Argosy, West, and other magazines while his Thubway Tham and Crimson Clown found their home in Detective Story Magazine; Dashiell Hammett’s Continental Op appeared in Black Mask while Frederick Nebel’s Cardigan investigated crime in Dime Detective Magazine and Robert Leslie Bellem’s Dan Turner looked under the covers in Spicy Detective; Robert E. Howard’s Conan, Kull, and Solomon Kane were all published in Weird Tales, while various Fiction House titles laid claim to his Breckenridge Elkins yarns; and E. E. “Doc” Smith’s Skylark and Lensmen series were featured in Amazing Stories and Astounding Science Fiction. You’ll find continuing characters throughout the Great Pulps.

As we have seen here and on the Facebook site, the first pulp dedicated to a single character was The Shadow (subtitled A Detective Magazine), its initial issue dated April 1931. Following its astounding success, the leading pulp magazine publishers launched seven new titles in 1933—The Phantom Detective, Nick Carter, Doc Savage, The Lone Eagle, G-8 and His Battle Aces, The Spider, and Pete Rice Magazine—what we now call the “hero pulp explosion of 1933.” These eight titles would, by and large, serve as the foundation for over fifty more titles released over nearly two decades. Although most of the single-character magazines that followed that initial burst of 1933 had relatively short lives, they helped to keep afloat an industry that was dying.

Stories of Sheena, Queen of the Jungle, published by Fiction House in the spring of 1951, would be the last single-character magazine to be introduced to the reading public. Within a few years of Sheena’s sole appearance in her own rough-paper title, the entire pulp magazine industry would be gone, the victim of changing public tastes. But for many of us who love the pulps, it was the hero magazines that introduced us to pulp collecting, helping to keep alive the memory of the great pulp era.

From July 25th through July 28th, please join PulpFest 2013 at the Hyatt Regency in downtown Columbus, Ohio as we celebrate “80 Years of Doc Savage and the Hero Pulp Explosion of 1933.” You’ll find additional details by scrolling through our pages.

Modest Stein was the cover artist for the April 1931 issue of The Shadow, A Detective Magazine. The artwork had been previously used by Street & Smith as the cover to the October 1, 1919 issue of The Thrill Book. The reproduction above is from The Shadow #47, published in March 2011 by Sanctum Books to celebrate the Street & Smith pulp’s eightieth anniversary.

Why PulpFest?

Tonight, we thought that we would share something written by Walker Martin and posted yesterday on Yahoo’s PulpMags newsgroup. Take it away Walker . . .

Dime DetectiveJuly 23, 2013–Readers and Collectors! We are down to the final minutes now. It’s time to separate the non-collectors from the collectors. Yes, it’s that time of year again. Pulpfest 2013 begins this Thursday, July 25th and continues through Sunday, July 28th in Columbus, Ohio. The complete details are at www.pulpfest.com.

Will you be one of the millions of poor souls that do NOT attend PulpFest? Or will you be among the elite of old magazine collectors, those that DO attend? I’m talking about the 400 or so pulp, digest, paperback, book and original art collectors who will be swarming to the pulp collecting center of the universe. In April it was Chicago for Windy City and now in July, it is Columbus, Ohio.

I’ve heard all the reasons for not attending this pulp convention and there is no acceptable excuse! Illness? Hell, I knew a collector who attended knowing he had a terminal illness and would be dead in a few months. I once attended with a busted back, wrapped up like a mummy, not able to sit down for the entire convention. Every 40 minutes I had to stop the car and get out to stretch and walk around. For awhile I was almost positive that I wasn’t going to make it and I started stopping near hotels in case I had to give up and just lay in a bed for a couple weeks.

But the thought of my collection kept me going. The visions of more SF magazines, more detective and adventure pulps, more westerns. The artwork, the original cover paintings, the interior illustrations. The stacks of digest magazines, the vintage paperbacks. The friends and old pals that I enjoyed talking to and seeing once again. Some of the best friendships in my life are now stretching beyond the 40 year mark. I just had lunch with a collector that I’ve know since 1970 and we talked about books for 3 hours straight. How could I not attend the pulp convention? When I returned home, I took 4 weeks off from work to recuperate from my back problems. Let’s face it, our collections are more important than some job that just pays the bills.

Speaking of money, I’ve heard the excuse about not having the cash to attend the convention. I never let this stop me. Sometimes I borrowed the money from the bank or the credit union. I even borrowed money from my wife. You know you have to be desperate to ask for help from a non-collector! I’ve used my credit cards, pension money, money set aside for bills. I mean we are talking about a serious addiction here!

To be a serious book or old magazine collector, is a calling of the highest order. You are not just some wage slave like the other millions of non-collectors. No, you are a Collector with a capital C. You don’t just eat, work, watch TV, and sleep. And then repeat it day after day like most poor bastards. YOU READ! You Collect valuable and rare artifacts.

In this era of electronic gadgets, you actually collect non-electronic books and pulps. I mean how cool is that? No computer geek can stand up to that. E-books look pitiful next to a beautiful real, hard copy book. You can’t collect E-books like pulps. A stack of pulps is a thing of beauty. The smell, the look, the feel. And they are worth money!

I’ve tried many addictions and they can’t compare to collecting books and pulps. Drugs, alcohol, gambling, all can destroy your health and finances. I won’t even get into sex. Sexual habits can ruin you just like any addiction or at the very least, you will find yourself married to a non-collector!

So there is still time to say to hell with your job and personal responsibilities. Your family can do without you for a few days. Your book addiction needs to be fed. Your Collection must be extended and made larger. You need more books!

PulpFest awaits…

Long ago, Walker Martin was almost the proud owner of the original artwork by Walter M. Baumhofer used for the January 1938 issue of Dime Detective Magazine, pictured above. However, his wife just didn’t like the image. The gentleman having his lips sewn shut was probably insisting that he could not attend PulpFest due to a canker sore on his tongue. Or could it illustrate the classic battle of the collector and the non-collector? “But Grandma! Just loan me another thousand for the last issue that I need to complete that Burroughs serial! Mmmph, mmmph, mmmph . . . .”

Safe Journey

Doc Savage Spook LegionJuly 24, 2013–PulpFest 2013 will begin tomorrow, July 25th. Dealer set-up will take place from 4 PM to 11 PM. Early registration will start at 6 PM outside the Regency Ballroom on the third floor of the Hyatt Regency. Information will be available upon your arrival at the hotel. To all of you who will be attending PulpFest, we look forward to seeing you. Please have a safe journey to Columbus.

Barry Traylor, Ed Hulse, Jack Cullers, and Mike Chomko–your PulpFest Organizing Committee.

Doc and Ham are hurrying to PulpFest in Walter Baumhofer’s front cover to the April 1935 Doc Savage Magazine, originally thought to illustrate “The Spook Legion.” The image is from the pulpcovers.com website.

PulpFest 2013 Begins Today

Yen Sin 36-09-10July 25, 2013–Tonight at 8 PM, PulpFest 2013 will begin its programming with a look at the pulp descendents of Dr. Fu Manchu and a presentation on Hollywood’s attempts to bring the pulps to the silver screen. Finishing off the night will be a showing of the first five chapters of the classic Columbia chapter play, The Spider’s Web. This 1938 production is considered one of the best movie serials of all time.

You can find additional details about these and all of our presentations by visiting the Programming page of our website.

The PulpFest dealers’ room will open for business beginning at 9 AM on Friday, July 26th. Tonight, you can register early for what is typically a feeding frenzy as book and pulp collectors scour the room searching for this or that long elusive volume. All you have to do is arrive by Thursday evening at the Hyatt Regency Columbus and register for the convention from 6 PM – 8 PM. Early registration will take place right outside of the Regency Ballroom on the hotel’s third floor.

Admission to the show is $15 per day or $35 for all three days, allowing entry to all convention activities. The general public is very much welcome to attend.

Jerome Rozen’s cover art above appeared on the September/October 1936 issue of Dr. Yen Sin.

PulpFest 2013 Underway

docpulp1July 26, 2013–PulpFest 2013 got underway on Thursday evening with a full slate of programming starting at 8 PM. Now, in just a few short minutes, the PulpFest 2013 dealers’ room will be open to all. Upon entry to the Hyatt’s spacious exhibition hall, collectors will be greeted by more than 100 tables filled with pulps, books, original artwork, vintage comics, and other collectibles. And the feeding frenzy will begin!

There’s still plenty of time to join in on the fun. The dealers’ room will be open until 5 PM today and from 9 AM to 5 PM on Saturday. Sunday will be a bit shorter, from 9 AM to 2 PM. Friday’s programming schedule includes three author readings in the afternoon. The evening presentations will begin at 7:30 PM with a panel discussion of Philip José Farmer’s contributions to the Doc Savage mythos. Another panel will examine Doc Savage and the pulp heroes of 1933, while pulp art historian David Saunders will look at the life and work of artist Walter M. Baumhofer. Ending tonight’s programming will be a showing of chapters 6 – 10 of The Spider’s Web, Columbia Pictures’ classic chapter play based on the adventures of Norvell W. Page’s vigilante hero.

We’ll have more exciting programming for you on Saturday, including an auction of more than 100 lots of collectibles. You can learn more about all of our great presentations by visiting the Programming page of our website.

Admission to the show is $15 per day or $35 for all three days, allowing entry to all convention activities. Children under 15 accompanied by a parent are free. The general public is welcome to attend.

The cover art above is by Walter M. Baumhofer for the March 1933 issue of Doc Savage Magazine.

PulpFest 2013 Continues . . .

Spider's WebThere’s still time to get in on the action. The dealers’ room will be open today from 9 AM to 5 PM and from 9 AM to 2 PM on Sunday.

Today at 1 PM, Ron Fortier will host a forum on “new pulp fiction.” Afterward, Radio ArchivesRoger Price will be reading from Will Murray’s Doc Savage/King Kong crossover, Skull Island, while Jim Beard, a columnist for the Toledo Free Press and a freelance writer, will read from several of his works.

Our evening programming begins at 7:30 PM. PulpFest 2013 will celebrate the 100th anniversary of Dr. Fu-Manchu, the creation of Sax Rohmer, with a panel on the devil doctor and his influence on the pulps and American popular culture. There will also be a presentation on hero pulp premiums and promotions as well as a showing of the concluding chapters of The Spider’s Web, Columbia Pictures’ classic movie serial based on one of the most popular hero pulp magazines of the thirties and forties.

The presentation of the annual Munsey Award  and an auction featuring the collection of pulp historian Albert Tonik and other collectible material will also take place during the evening hours. You can learn more about all of our great presentations by visiting the Programming page of our website.

Don’t let PulpFest 2013 slip by. Come to Columbus and join up! Admission to the show is $15 on Saturday and $5 on Sunday, allowing entry to all convention activities. Children under 15 accompanied by a parent are free. The general public is welcome to attend.

Above is a two-color advertising bill for the 1947 re-release of The Spider’s Web in Australia. To learn more about this great movie serial and its sequel, please visit The Spider Returns website.

And the Winner Is . . .

Final Munsey AwardJuly 27, 2013–Garyn G. Roberts has been named the winner of the 2013 Munsey Award. Nominated by the general pulp community, Garyn was selected through a vote by all the living Lamont, Munsey, and Rusty Award winners. The award is a fine art print by Dan Zimmer of a painting by David Saunders and is presented annually to a person who has worked for the betterment of the pulp community.

Garyn has worked in the field of higher education for many years, teaching English and popular culture studies. He is also an unabashed fan of the pulps. Garyn has written extensively about the pulps, both professionally and as a fan. He has edited or co-edited some of the best collections from the pulps including A Cent a Story: The Best from Ten Detective Aces, More Tales of the Defective Detective in the Pulps, The Compleat Adventures of the Moon Man, The Magical Mysteries of Don Diavolo, and The Compleat Great Merlini Saga. His insightful essays in these books and elsewhere have led to a greater understanding of the pulps both inside and outside of the pulp community. His collection, The Prentice Hall Anthology of Science Fiction and Fantasy, a college level textbook, is notable for the attention paid to the pulp magazines. Additionally, Garyn has helped other researchers with various pulp-related projects and is a regular attendee of pulp conventions where he often serves as a presenter and panelist. Last year’s Munsey Award winner, Matt Moring, publisher of Altus Press, recently said about Garyn: “He’s been nothing but helpful and outgoing with anything I’ve ever asked of him.” That pretty much describes how Professor Roberts reacts to all the requests made of him by the pulp community.

Other nominees for this year’s award included Charles Ardai, J. Randolph Cox, Stephen T. Miller, Laurie Powers, J. Barry Traylor, George Vanderburgh, Dan Zimmer, William G. Contento, Chris Kalb, Phil Stephensen-Payne, Celina Summers, and Howard Wright. John DeWalt also received votes.

Nominations are now being accepted for the 2014 Munsey and/or Rusty Awards. If you have someone in mind that you feel worthy of either award, please send the person’s name and a brief paragraph describing why you feel that person should be honored to Mike Chomko, 2217 W. Fairview Street, Allentown, PA 18104-6542 or to mike@pulpfest.com. Previous winners of the Lamont, Munsey, or Rusty Award are not eligible for the award. The deadline for nominations is May 31, 2014. Please visit the Awards  page of the PulpFest website for additional details. Thanks for your help.

Start Making Plans for PulpFest 2014

PulpFest 2013 FlyerJuly 28, 2013–PulpFest 2013 is drawing to a close, but there is still time to get in on the action. The dealers’ room will be open from 9 AM until 2 PM today. With most of our dealers getting ready to head for home, our admission for the day is only $5 which even includes a copy of our highly ollectible program book, The Pulpster. There are no programming events scheduled for Sunday.

If you have not been able to attend PulpFest in 2013, start making your plans right now to join the 43rd convening of “The Summer’s Great Pulp Con” in 2014. The PulpFest committee is already starting to plan for next year’s convention.

To keep informed about PulpFest 2014, bookmark http://www.pulpfest.com/ and visit often. News about the convention can also be found on the PulpFest Facebook site at http://www.facebook.com/PulpFest. And for those who prefer their news short and sweet, follow our Twitter feed at https://twitter.com/pulpfest. Finally, there’s our email list. It’s the gray box to the right of this post. Subscribe to our list and be the first on your block to get news about PulpFest.

Many thanks to all those who attended this year’s convention. We hope everyone will be able to make it to PulpFest 2014!

Many thanks to our art designer Chris Kalb for his usual excellent work in formulating our flyer for the 2013 convention. The background painting is, of course, Walter M. Baumhofer’s The Man of Bronze that was used as the cover for the first issue of Doc Savage Magazine dated March 1933.

Many Thanks

Collier's, 04-01-39Aug. 1, 2013–Year after year, there are countless individuals and organizations that help to make PulpFest an enjoyable experience for those who choose to attend “Summer’s Great Pulp Con.” The PulpFest Organizing Committee would like to thank the following people and organizations for their invaluable assistance in helping to make PulpFest 2013 a wonderful weekend. We could not have done it without you:

Our all-volunteer front desk staff–Maura Childers, Sam Childers, Aaron Cullers, Jack Cullers, Sally Cullers, Samantha Cullers, and Tess Massey; our panelists, presenters, and auctioneers–Jim Beard, Christopher Paul Carey, Nick Carr, Gene Christie, Win Scott Eckert, Ron Fortier, John Gunnison, Ed Hulse, Don Hutchison, Chris Kalb, Rick Lai, Nathan Madison, William Patrick Maynard, Matt Moring, Will Murray, Van Allen Plexico, Roger Price, Garyn Roberts, Joseph Saine, David Saunders, Frank Schildiner, Art Sippo, and John Allen Small; our behind-the-scenes help–Mike Chomko, Mike Croteau of FarmerCon, Ohio State’s Eric Johnson, Chris Kalb, Lohr McKinstry, Rick and Renee Thomas, Barry Traylor, Chuck Welch, Dan Zimmer,  and the staff of the Hyatt Regency Columbus.

The Organizing Committee would also like to thank the people who helped to create The Pulpster #22–Editor and designer Bill Lampkin and proofreader Peter Chomko, plus contributors Michael Chomko, Tony Davis, Monte Herridge, Tom Johnson, John Locke, Nathan Vernon Madison, William Patrick Maynard, Vella Munn, Will Murray, Laurie Powers, William Preston, David Rajchel, George Vanderburgh, , and the magazine’s sponsors–Baen Books, The Comic Book Shop in Spokane, Washington, Doug Frizzle, Richard Halegua, Heartwood Auctions, Larry Latham and Lovecraft is Missing, Murania Press, Pro Se Productions, The Pulp Factory, Radio Archives (who also provided the door prizes for PulpFest 2013), Stark House Press, Alfred R. Taylor, Titan Books, and Weird Tales.

Many thanks as well to the nominators and Lamont Award, Munsey Award, and Rusty Hevelin Service Award winners who helped to select the winner of this year’s Munsey, Garyn G. Roberts. Congratulations to Garyn and to all of the nominees for our 2013 awards.

Again, we’d like to thank the following organizations for the books and similar items that were donated to PulpFest for distribution to our members: John Huckans and Book Source Magazine, Engle Publishing and The Paper & Advertising Collectors’ Marketplace, the Estate of Rusty Hevelin, Gordon Van Gelder and Fantasy & Science Fiction, Tom Brown and Radio Archives, Greg Shepard and Stark House Press, and Charles F. Millhouse and Stormgate Publishing.

Finally, thanks to all of the conventions, book and paper fairs, bookstores, comic and collectible shops, web sites, magazines, newspapers, and other media outlets that helped to promote our show as well as the dealers, attending members and supporting members of PulpFest 2013. It was due to your encouragement and support that our convention was successful. We hope to see you all back next summer along with a good many newcomers for PulpFest 2014. Details will be forthcoming in the months ahead. So please subscribe to our PulpFest email list through the small gray box found along the right side of our home page. You’ll also be able to find information at our Facebook site and through our Twitter account.

If you’d like to volunteer to help with PulpFest 2014, please email Mike Chomko, Jack Cullers, Ed Hulse, or Barry Traylor.

Message from the Chairman

PulpFest 2013 PreliminaryAug. 4, 2013–The spirits within the PulpFest Committee are quite low right now. Perhaps some of the low spirits can be attributed to being tired, but we are also disappointed, frustrated, and questioning whether or not we are on the right track with the convention. I am speaking mainly for myself, but I believe at least a couple of the other committee members agree with my thoughts.

The turnout was somewhat less than we had anticipated. We, and especially Mike, had spent a lot of time preparing for this year’s PulpFest. Mike spent hour after hour updating and writing new material for the social media where we have a presence. I am not exaggerating—hour after hour. Ed spent a lot of time with interviews, press releases, presentations and other such activities. Barry contacted other events and coordinated getting us mentioned on other sites. After all this, we didn’t see much of a jump in attendance. There were some new faces, but I don’t think they offset the number of people who have attended in the past but chose not to this year.

The auction was somewhat of a disappointment. None of the material that was submitted was, shall we say, extraordinary. Barry, Mike, and others spent a lot of the weekend preparing for the auction and we did not have anything that caused anyone to sit up and take notice. Do we discontinue the auction?

I, since it is my area, was disappointed in the hotel. Their response to problems I encountered was dismal. Some of the front desk people appeared to have had no communication concerning the convention and the guests who were attending (parking, wi-fi, location, etc). There was no signage within the hotel announcing the convention and its location. Doors that were supposed to be locked were unlocked, which meant I had to stand guard outside the programming room until someone showed up to lock it (45 minutes). The freight elevator got jammed up on Sunday (horror of horrors), and I had to contact a kitchen worker to help resolve the issue—no one else could be found with a search warrant). I know, minor stuff to most people, but they were things that should not have happened.

And then, still with the hotel, they tell me our dates for next year are not available. The weekend they offered me is August 8-10. We have been trying to stay with the last weekend in July, but it was given to a couple of large local groups (money talks). As of right now, the committee is unsure of our next step. The August weekend is a little further away from Windy City, but we have heard in the past that attendees do not necessarily like August conventions. So, here is another potential impact to attendance.

Very few comments after the convention had to do with the tremendous amount of informative and interesting programing we presented. We had many comments about the lack of WiFi in the ballroom. We negotiated for free WiFi in the rooms, but we decided not to spend the money for the ballroom. This would have entailed raising the price for everyone to accommodate a few. Not on our watch.

We had a comment that the halls were too long and it hurt an attendee’s knees. He or she is not returning. I should mention, by the way, that the attendee did not stay at the Hyatt. He or she stayed at a hotel in the neighborhood which, if you think about it, might have contributed to the long walks.

I got blistered by a woman who arrived at 12:30 on Sunday afternoon, paid nothing at the door, and then wanted to scratch my eyes out because dealers were packing up. She said they had driven all the way from Cincinnati. As chairman I sympathized, but inside my head, not so much. Our postings on the Internet stated that although we were open on Sunday, many dealers would be packing up for their trip home.

So here you have a brief outline of the current status of your PulpFest committee and some of the questions for which we are trying to find answers.

Do we quit advertising? In the beginning, we promised to do more advertising and we have fulfilled that promise. But has it gained us enough in the way of new attendees to justify the considerable cost?

Do we lower our expectations? Is 400-425 the most we can ever expect for our summer pulp convention?

Do we look for new blood to take over part of the convention? Do we merge with another convention to have just one major convention a year? Some of the committee members are no longer spring chickens (I hate to use the barnyard analogy) and eventually, we will step aside anyway.

Stay tuned. We will get to a point where information will need to be filtered to you. Until then, send me your constructive comments and we will add them to the mix. You can contact me at jack@pulpfest.com.

Jack Cullers
Chairman, PulpFest Organizing Committee

Comments

Comment by Greg Gick — Aug. 7, 2013

Keep on going! PulpFest was great, and IS great. It is the only time I get to meet folks of like interests, as well as a convention where I feel I could take my family and feel safe about them. Maybe it’s just that right now a lot of people are low on funds–I was, with the economy. But don’t give up! I loved PulpFest and want it to continue!

Comment by Steve DeNunzio — Aug. 8, 2013

Hi. I’ve gone to the last 16 pulp cons and wouldn’t miss them for the world. After reading about your trials and tribulations at this last con I felt a little down that you might cut it out or merge with another. There really is a great bunch of pulp fans and very knowledgeable in the field of pulps. Fight the good fight and keep it going!

Comment by Mike — Aug. 12, 2013

I thought this year’s PulpFest was the best ever, as did my buddies who attended! We had a blast. Keep it going!

The Book Cave

PulpFest 2013 PreliminaryAug. 4, 2013–As he has for the last two years, Ric Croxton has been posting recordings of our PulpFest 2013 panels and presentations to The Book Cave. The PulpFest organizing committee would like to thank Ric and the fans who recorded our PulpFest programming events for their past and continuing support. Their help in promoting PulpFest and its exceptional programming is very much appreciated.

Click here for a direct link to The Books Cave‘s Panel Fest recordings and remember to add The Book Cave to your favorites for regular podcasts about books, comics, pulps, movie serials, old-time radio, and TV series.

Munsey Award Update

Roberts, Garyn 2013 Award WinnerWe’ve just updated the Past Award Winners page of our website, adding an entry on the winner of the 2013 Munsey Award, Professor Garyn G. Roberts, pictured to the left with his well-deserved honor. Just click on the link above and you will be directed to the page.

About a week back, Garyn sent us a letter concerning the award he received at this year’s PulpFest. We’d like to share it with you as it clearly demonstrates why Professor Roberts was very deserving of his Munsey. Way to go, Garyn! You’re the best!

August 5, 2013

Dear Friends:

Thank you for naming me the 2013 Munsey Award recipient. The honor of being this year’s representative means a great deal to me. There are so many others worthy of this award—for research, writing and publication, presentations, service and promotion of pulp magazine history, preservation, scholarship and fandom. To be associated with our extended group of visionaries and friends, for more than three decades personally, means so much and is an ongoing honor in itself—because of the people and close friends committed to this very important part of American and world literature and culture.

I have read Walter Gibson’s Shadow, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Robert E, Howard and Ray Bradbury since youth. My mother had given me paperback copies of Bradbury’s The Martian Chronicles and Long After Midnight in the early seventies. I have collected and read Big Little Books, comic books, and newspaper strips since I was six or seven in the mid-sixties. My dad told me that, in the 1930s and ‘40s, his cousin Fred used to hide pulp magazines in the barn of the family farm in northeastern Illinois—probably some with semi-provocative covers like Spicys and Saucys and Detectives and Weird Tales and so on.

Years later in graduate school, somewhere during the fall of 1981, my new-found friend and classmate Gary Hoppenstand provided me with my first Fu Manchu story—the yellow Pyramid paperback of The Insidious Fu Manchu, my first Arkham House volume—Carl Jacobi’s Revelations in Black, and my first pulp—a 1940s Weird Tales (with an uncharacteristically and unintentionally dreadful cover—no, I mean the art stunk, the same cover which misspelled Fredric Brown’s name on the cover); Brown’s story there is the really great “Come and Go Mad.” (I still have all three, and now, many dozen Rohmer hardcovers, an 85 percent complete Arkham House collection including multiple copies of some volumes, and a couple hundred Weird Tales.) More importantly, Gary has been a lifelong friend ever since. Today, together we continue writing projects; back then, we published the first volume of Frederick C. Davis’s Moon Man stories under the Purple Prose Press imprint (Bob Sampson, Nick Carr, Will Murray and Bob Weinberg joined us on that project; Don Hutchison was scheduled for the second volume; we donated some the meager profits from that endeavor—by and large we lost money—to Manly Wade Wellman’s end-of-life care), and wrote of defective detectives for Ray Browne’s Bowling Green Popular Press. We later got to meet Fred Davis’s son (Rick Davis) and granddaughter (the talented and beautiful Karen Cunningham)—I number them as good friends, too. We published a volume of dime novel reprints featuring female detectives, and I edited a little volume entitled A Cent A Story! The Best from Ten Detective Aces for the Popular Press at this time as well.

Somewhere around 1982-3, I met someone else. The best student I would ever have in a university class—and many thousands of students later still the best, though I love them all for different reasons—was Robert “Bob” Craig from the greater Cleveland area. I’d have been about 23 when Bob was 18 or 19. After 27 or 28 years, Bob found me again at PulpFest. For three or four years now, Bob and I have been back in touch, meeting at PulpFest, and planning a book project together (on the pulps) soon. One day in class some thirty years ago, Bob scared the hell out of me in my Fantasy and Science Fiction class at BGSU. I had a beautiful lecture prepared on Robert E. Howard, and as I made this presentation, Bob very politely and respectively added specific details to my lecture. Decades later, no one has scared me so badly in the classroom. Bob is scary bright. He is an even nicer person. Soon, Gary got Bob published in Echoes—this article might have been about the pulp-like Ahern novels including The Takers or about The Destroyer novels by Sapir and Murphy.

From Bowling Green in the first half of the 1980s, Gary and I increasingly strayed in quest of books and pulps. Soon we were in Ann Arbor and Dayton. Richard Clear ran The Dragon’s Lair in Dayton (exactly 124 miles south on Hwy 75 from BG), and he had the original “Pulp Vault”—literally a bank vault with a thick heavy metal door and spinning tumbler lock. White paper copies of the rarest, most wonderful pulps lived in this vault. In the meantime, back at BGSU, Bob Craig had completed a set of Bantam Doc Savage paperbacks to date—save one. Bob was missing Bantam #50, The Devil on the Moon. Gary and I bought Bob the issue—only it was the original pulp. I think we paid $15 for a nice copy from Dragon’s Lair. But in those days, at my first PulpCon auction at the University of Dayton, a really nice copy of “Zemba,” a 1930s Shadow pulp novel, went for $12.

At Bowling Green, I used to order pulps and pulp reprints and pulp related publications from Robert and Phyllis Weinberg’s catalogs. In those days we ordered by phone, and it got to a point where—whether Bob or Phyllis answered in Chicago—we knew each other’s voices so well that we did not have to introduce ourselves to each other.

One day, about 1984 or ‘85, Gary and I drove northwest of Ann Arbor another hour and arrived in East Lansing at Ray Walsh’s Curious Bookshop. The summer of 1985 saw us working in East Lansing for Michigan State, cataloguing Fantasy and Science Fiction fanzines donated by P. Schuyler Miller and others. Lots of ERB and REH. (Two strangely titled fanzines I remember were Amoeboid Scunge and The Four Door Grape. We used a hot-burning Apple IIE and lots of note cards.) There was one strange photo of a young Ray Bradbury, who later became my good friend, but . . . .

The summer of 1985 also saw the debut of two wonderful movies: Goonies and Return to Oz. Gary and I visited Curious Books almost daily that summer—especially when we had a little money to spend. I got a really nice copy of Arkham House’s Tales of Science and Sorcery by Clark Ashton Smith from Ray that summer. Still have it and a couple other copies of the book. Oh, that was also the summer that Ray sold me Clark Ashton Smith’s first book (of poetry)—corrected in fountain pen by the author—The Star Treader (1912). That one is locked away in a special place in my collection.

Ray Walsh has been my dear friend ever since. (Unlike Bradbury, Mr. Walsh has yet to be found in any embarrassing photos!) Working part-time in Ray’s shop in 1988 I met his new employee, Virginia, a reddish-brown haired art major; well you know . . . . Virginia and I were married July 31, 1994 in Madison. One winter about 1990 or ‘91, I spent my tax refund on part of an Arkham House collection Ray had on consignment. I think the seller was from Minnesota. But, that is ahead of the story.

May 10, 1986 I completed five years of graduate school and went through commencement at BGSU. After one last summer at my parents’ home in northern Wisconsin, I became an Assistant Professor at Mankato State University in Minnesota. More very important friends appeared.

During the fall of 1986, I journeyed northeast of Mankato about an hour and fifteen minutes to the Twin Cities. My little red Pontiac Sunbird (two-door, hatchback, four-on-the-floor) was filled with fourteen boxes of books to sell and/or trade—in the boxes were multiple copies of what for me were duplicate British Clark Ashton Smith paperbacks and much more. Eventually I walked into this really beautiful store called “DreamHaven” and met a guy named “Greg.” Greg Ketterer has been my good friend ever since.

A few months later, I discovered that Jack and Helen Deveny lived in Edina, a nice, semi-rural suburb of the cities. I visited them often after Friday morning classes at the university. I had corresponded with Jack and had bought pulps from his catalogs for several years. But I cannot tell you how important Jack and Helen were in my life. My friend, Tony Davis, printed a short essay/tribute I wrote about Jack and Helen in The Pulpster about five years ago. I was so happy that Tony let me provide happy personal memories of Jack and Helen. Thanks, Tony.

During the spring of 1987, I had an offer of an interview for a professorial position at Michigan State University. I got a job offer and Mankato countered. I loved Mankato and I have often wondered what would have happened had I not headed east for the big city lights of a Big Ten school. But Ray Walsh and then later Jay, Mark, Christian, Bob, Virginia and so many others would meet me there.

I mention this transition of career and life to set up another pulp remembrance. Michigan State flew me from the Twin Cities (Hubert H. Humphrey airport) to Detroit for my interview. At the time, my old buddy Gary Hoppenstand was teaching in Toledo; he came north to Detroit to meet me. I got off the plane briefcase in hand, and we went to Gary’s car as if to complete some sinister espionage transaction straight from the pulps. Gary brought out his briefcase and we simultaneously opened our cases on the hood of his car. Gary handed me pulps and books, and I handed Gary pulps and books. It was all unscripted. The shady transaction was complete.

There are so many others stories and friends before, in between and after.

I started at Michigan State University fall of 1987; Gary started at MSU exactly a year later in 1988—the place where, back during the summer of 1985, we cataloged fanzines for the Russel B. Nye Special Collections section of the MSU libraries—and where we haunted Curious Books. In 1994, I moved 175 miles northwest to Northwestern Michigan College in Traverse City.

A few years later I started work on what would be an award-winning volume of Fantasy and Science Fiction—not because of me, but because of the content of the volume and the vision of my Senior Editor, Ms. Carrie Brandon. (In 1995 I was a Mystery Writers Finalist for the Edgar Allan Poe Award for Dick Tracy and American Culture: Morality and Mythology, Text and Context—McFarland.) Again, pulp fiction was the mainstay of the F and SF project. Late in life, the great pulp artist Edd Cartier (Shadow and Unknown artist) actually provided an original pulp painting for color reproduction in the book. The book, a college and university textbook and, yet, popular anthology, is still in print: The Prentice Hall Anthology of Science Fiction and Fantasy (Pearson Education). Bob Weinberg and Forry Ackerman helped with that one. And my friend, Carrie? She is the granddaughter of the prolific pulp Western writer, C. W. Harrison. She has become a member of the Roberts family. Carrie toured us through the Louisa May Alcott House outside of Boston during the spring of 2012. It was a trip of a lifetime for my youngest, Morgan, then eleven years old. Before and after, Morgan had and has read the vast majority of what Alcott wrote—memoirs, romances, social melodramas, Civil War hospital accounts, bodice-rippers, supernatural stories, as well as all the Little Women type books.

It was about ten years ago (in the early days of the twenty-first century) when I first met Dr. George Vanderburgh. I was participating in a National American Culture/Popular Culture Association meeting in Toronto. Virginia and our children were with me. Another shady pulp deal was in the offing. George drove to the conference hotel to sell me three hardcover volumes—a complete set of reprints of Seabury Quinn’s Jules de Grandin stories. The whole experience was unbelievable. The volumes were and are extraordinary, and George was a really neat man who quickly became a very dear friend. Dr. George brought me on to his publishing company and has included me in several publishing projects ever since. Bob Weinberg, Rodney Shroeder, and Randy Vanderbeek were and are part of George’s team, too. I got to edit and introduce a range of pulp reprints for George under The Lost Treasures from the Pulps heading. We completed (along with Gary) Frederick C. Davis’s Moon Man saga, and we got Rick Davis and Karen Cunningham on board for that one, too. George had me edit Clayton Rawson volumes, including some very rare Don Diavlo and related pulp stories; volumes of G.T. Fleming-Roberts (no direct relation to me) Green Ghost stories; Park Avenue Hunt Club stories; and more. George’s books are massive and definitive, and we all need them. I hope George, our friends and I will be releasing some new projects soon. There are some great ones in the wings.

A couple of years ago my friend, Steve Haffner, had me write a lengthy introduction to the first of two large volumes of Henry Kuttner weird-menace stories. I got to share the cover bylines on that great book with Kuttner, and the recently passed Richard Matheson. A couple of months ago, I published essays on Kuttner and Robert Bloch in a book for Salem Press. Two or three more essays on my late friend, Ray Bradbury, are due in a book from Salem later this year.

Rick Hall and I are contributing essays to Matt Moring’s Altus Press reprint volumes of James B. Hendryx novels and stories. I have some neat stories to share about Hendryx, probably my favorite adventure writer. Hendryx and I, at different times, both spent lots of years in the greater Traverse City, Michigan area. More introductions for volumes of Giesy and Smith Semi Dual stories are upcoming for Altus Press. Thanks, Matt, for the opportunities.

Mark Hickman is letting me write an essay for the second collection of his father’s (Lynn’s) historic Pulp Era prozines. If you do not have the first collection of Lynn and Mark’s book, you need to get it. Here’s a preview: in part, I am going to talk about how Lynn’s excellent life and work is carried on in his son, my dear friend, Mark.

Ed Hulse has published my work before, too. What an honor for me to be in Blood ‘n’ Thunder. Ed, I promise you something new soon. Ed and Murania Press have recently released The Blood ‘n’ Thunder Guide to Pulp Fiction. This study is an instant cornerstone of any pulp scholarship. If you haven’t already done so, add Ed’s book and Nathan Vernon Madison’s Anti-Foreign Imagery in American Pulps and Comic Books (McFarland, 2013) to your personal library as soon as possible.

There is another friend of more than three decades I need to mention here—one of the genuine gentlemen of the pulp community. Albert “Al” Tonik has provided sincere friendship, excellent research and camaraderie all that time, and I am so very glad that I was able to get a few of the pieces from his research library through the PulpFest auctions of 2012 and ‘13.

I haven’t even mentioned the legendary Doug Ellis (and Deb Fulton) and John (and Maureen) Gunnison, Mike (and Dianne) Chomko, Jack (and Sally) Cullers and their family, and Barry Traylor, Neil and Leigh Mechem, Martin (and Michelle) Grams, Jr., and Francis “Mike” Nevins.

Tom Roberts (friend and family, but not blood relation), John Locke (excellent researcher), Gene Christie (excellent researcher), Bill Mann (Bill, I have enjoyed some G-8 stories through the years, but hadn’t considered myself an Aviation pulp guy until your books—thanks for some really wonderful research and scholarship), Chris Kalb (looking forward to part two of your pulp premiums next summer), Anthony Tollin (master of The Shadow), Laurie Powers (I am so glad to get to know you, Laurie), Walker Martin (we need to collect your blogs and writing in one volume—you are very good, and funny), Phil Nelson and Holly, and Dave Schmidt and Zoey and their family.

What lifelong friends you all are. You have made my life much more than it would have been without you. There are so many others—I am sorry I have not listed you all here. May be that there will be more stories of all of you soon—all good, I promise.

Maybe I am naïve. Yet it seems to me that, the Pulp community, as it has expanded, is comprised of people who work together; petty jealousies and squabbles do not exist. The sincere mutual support for collectors, researchers, writers, publishers, newcomers and others is extraordinary. I think the old pulpmasters of days gone by would approve of what today’s Pulp community has done for their collective legacy.

All this is to say “Thank You” for naming me the 2013 recipient of the Munsey Award. I have been honored beyond words to be associated with the Pulp community for thirty plus years. The image on that Munsey, by my very good friend, David Saunders, is better up close than I could have ever imagined—I was always afraid to ever consider that I might one day have this image as an award. I am still in awe and humbled, but mostly you need to hear my sincere “thank you,” and know my love for you, my friends—no, my extended family. I bet there are pulps in Heaven, and I bet Bob Sampson and Jack Deveny are already cataloging them there.

Garyn G. Roberts, Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin

Chuck Welch, webmaster of the Hidalgo Trading Company site, snapped the above photo of Garyn offering his Munsey acceptance speech on July 27, 2013. If you’d like to hear Garyn’s address, Jason Aiken has posted a recording of it on his Pulp Crazy website.

Comments

Comment by Walker Martin — Aug. 15, 2013

Thanks for writing this extremely interesting letter, Garyn. It brings back alot of memories.

There are two things I used to do before attending Pulpcon in Dayton, Ohio. First I would visit The Dragon’s Lair owned by Richard Clear. I also remember the big bank vault that he stored pulps in. Not only did Richard Clear sell me pulps but I bought some pulp art from him including four big illustrations by Norman Saunders.

The second thing I’d do would be to visit Bonnett’s Bookstore. Once a year, he would bring pulps up from his basement for Pulpcon. In fact at an early Pulpcon, Bonnett was the unofficial guest of honor and gave a talk on his pulp writing days when he even managed to crack BLACK MASK.

I also miss Jack Deveny and his wife, Helen. Every Christmas he would send Christmas greetings with a pulp cover on the card. I once loaned him a box of pulps that had Christmas covers and he used the images for many holidays.

Bob Sampson! For 25 years we carried on an extensive correspondence about pulps. I still have his letters, a couple hundred of them. And Ray Walsh! I was wondering recently why I don’t find as many pulps at his table like I used to. And then I realized the answer was because I had bought so many from Ray in earlier years. Ray’s been attending the pulp conventions since the first or second one. We started off as young collectors in our twenties or thirties(I was 30 at the first Pulpcon in 1972) and now we have turned into grizzled veterans.

Well, at least I have, though lately I seem to be fading and crumbling like an old pulp magazine. Just as long as I don’t start shedding like a pulp!

I could go on and on about some of the collectors you mention, guys like Bob Weinberg, who I’ve known since the 1960′s. So thanks for the great letter and congratulations again.

Comment by J. Barry Traylor — Aug. 15, 2013

Garyn, I wish I was as erudite as you. Suffice to say I can’t think of anyone that deserved The Munsey more than you. Not only are you a really nice guy and a person I am proud to know, but a darn good writer to boot.

**** - Additional Reviews - ****

2013/08/13

If you would like to read more reviews about PulpFest 2013 you can find them at the following sites:

Argonotes–Nathan Madison, author of Anti-Foreign Imagery in American Pulps and Comic Books, 1920-1960 and a PulpFest 2013 panelist, presents a detailed report of his second PulpFest.

The Book Cave–thanks to Art Sippo, you’ll find recordings of many of the presentations featured at PulpFest 2013 on Ric Croxton’s podcast about books, comics, movie serials, old-time radio, and TV series. You’ll also find a recording of Ric’s interview of PulpFest co-organizer Ed Hulse dated July 1, 2013.

Dealers' Room 2

Columbus Alivecolumnist Sarah Thompson offered a preview of PulpFest 2013 in the July 25th issue of this Columbus weekly.

Murania Presspart one of PulpFest committee member and Blood ‘n’ Thunder editor Ed Hulse’s convention outlook.

Murania Presspart two of Ed Hulse’s review of PulpFest 2013.

Press-Republicanreporter and pulp fan Lohr McKinstry offered this view of PulpFest to his readers in Plattsburgh, NY.

Pulp Crazy–Jason Aiken talks about his PulpFest experience, complete with photographs in this YouTube video.

Pulp CrazyJason Aiken wraps up his coverage on the convention with a brief summary of his experiences and links to recordings of nearly a dozen panels and presentations.

Sam Maronie’s Entertainment Funhousean expert on classic cinema and the comic-book industry describes his pilgrimage to Columbus’ PulpFest

3rd Annual Pulp Fiction Lecture–Ed Hulse on the “Hero Pulps”photographs and description of Ed’s lecture at Ohio State University’s Thompson Library.

Hyatt Area Revised

Many thanks to Pulpster editor William Lampkin and his Yellowed Perils website for putting together this list of links and to Jason Aiken for his photos of the PulpFest dealers’ room and the area surrounding the Hyatt Regency Columbus.

 

**** - Laurie’s Wild West - ****

2013/08/13

Laurie PowersLaurie Powers is a writer, traveler, blogger, photographer, pulp fiction enthusiast, horse lover, collector, Dodger fan, and woman about town. She has been to every PulpFest since 2009. The article below is © 2013 Laurie Powers and used with permission. Pictures accompanying are unaccredited.

PulpFest 2013 has come and gone. I didn’t post any reports during the convention as I was too busy hanging out with friends. Nothing personal, but I only see these people once a year, unfortunately, so I’d rather spend my time catching up with them instead of writing a blog post.

It was a great weekend, one in which I sold a great many copies of Hidden Ghosts, the final collection of my grandfather’s short stories that we’re publishing. What was interesting is that right before I left for the con, I realized that I hadn’t made any arrangements to have his first two books, Pulp Writer and Riding the Pulp Trail, at the convention. So I raced over to my storage unit and pulled out three copies of each to shove into my suitcase. I figured that it was a crapshoot over whether they would sell, as many people at PulpFest already have copies.

But what I didn’t realize until I got to the convention was that once you put these two books together with the new book, they make a stunning set. So stunning that Altus Press and I are considering getting slipcases made so we can sell them as a trilogy. All of the copies I brought with me on the plane sold out on the first day.

Love Story 39-10-14I feel like I’m living two separate lives at PulpFest. When I sit down at my table, I’m selling my grandfather’s writings, but when I get up from the table, I switch over and am on the hunt for issues of Love Story Magazine and other publications that may help me in my research of pulp editor Daisy Bacon. Before this PulpFest, I had roughly 75 copies of Love Story. Why would I need any more, you ask. Well, when you consider how influential Daisy was in the era of love pulps, and how much of her life she poured into this magazine, you’d see why I need to get a good representation of the magazine from its run that lasted from 1921 to 1949.

Another reason is that Love Story almost always ran serials. Each issue of the magazine would contain one or two serials, five or six short stories, poems, and columns. Serials were long stories that were separated into installments, one installment appearing in the issue every week. Serials could run from two installments to as many as six. Which means that you may need to get every single issue for six weeks straight in order to read a complete serialized story. That is not easy to do. Even though Love Story was the most popular pulp fiction magazine of its generation, with a circulation of hundreds of thousands every week, very few copies survive. In addition, romance pulps have never been of major interest to collectors, as the vast majority of collectors have been men. So it has been a struggle to find the magazine.

Here is where going to a convention can give you an immediate return on your investment (cost of the flight, hotel, etc.), because you can find, in one weekend, huge amounts of pulps that could take you years if you were only searching on eBay. I found quite a few issues of Love Story this year at PulpFest, ending up with about thirty. There were many more available, but most were issues that I already had. I was even lucky enough to pick up at least one set of 1931 issues that made up an entire serial. I brought one inventory list with me that listed all my issues of Love Story; by Friday night I had to completely redo my list because I had so many updates to add.

The hotel, the Hyatt Regency Columbus, was wonderful. There are plenty of good restaurants around Columbus’ Arena District to please almost anyone. Friday night we went to an Irish pub called The Three-Legged Mare. I had a grilled salmon salad–always dicey when ordering food from a pub–but it was delicious. There are plenty of options for breakfast and the hotel has a food court with the usual suspects like Subway so you can grab a quick lunch.

Arena District

What panels I went to were fascinating–Chris Kalb did a hugely entertaining presentation on pulp premiums. The auction, this year was heavy on reference books from Al Tonik’s collection, and I couldn’t stay awake past lot #100.

The connections you make, the camaraderie you share with friends, and the ability to bounce ideas off of people of like minds (very valuable if you’re a writer and don’t get much exposure to other writers the rest of the year) are all some of the side benefits of going to PulpFest. But finding those issues of Love Story–priceless.

**** - Mystery*File - ****

2013/08/13

Walker MartinWhen not reading or tracking down another acquisition for his collection, über-collector Walker Martin writes about reading and collecting for Steve Lewis’ excellent Mystery*File blog and for newsgroups such as pulpmags and WesternPulpsThe article below is © 2013 Walker Martin and used with permission. Accompanying photographs are unaccredited.

During the dates of July 25 to July 28, 2013 an event happened in Columbus, Ohio that may have been not important to non-pulp and non-book collectors, but if you collect and read these great artifacts then you know that something very special occurred. I attended almost forty pulp conventions when the old Pulpcon was the big summer event during 1972-2008. And as much as I loved that pulp convention, it never reached the heights of the present show which we call PulpFest. The most attendees that Pulpcon ever had was around 300 and many of the events had around 100 or so. But all five of the recent PulpFests have had higher attendance than Pulpcon ever had. Once again the attendance reached about 400 with over one-hundred dealer’s tables.

Yes, it is hard to believe but this was the fifth convention of the new pulp convention. And as a special reward to the attendees, it was one of the very best shows. If you read or collect pulps, pulp reprints, books, vintage paperbacks, or slicks then this was the place to be. If you like old movies or collect original art from books and magazines, then you were in luck because there were plenty of dvds and art for sale.

2013 Logo

As usual, I had been thinking of this convention ever since the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention ended in April. I’m severely addicted to reading, collecting, and buying all sorts of books and magazines, and I needed another fix. I also collect dvds of old movies and original artwork, so non-collectors simply do not understand me at all. They tend to call me everything from hoarder to that crazy guy who likes to read. Actually it is impossible for the non-collector and non-reader to ever understand the collector. The best policy is to ignore the poor, ignorant fools.

If you do not read or collect anything then you had better stop reading this report because it will freak you out. Most of the 400 attendees were addicts like me and they were out to collect and buy books and magazines come hell or high water. One collector actually took an Edd Cartier artwork out of my hands while I was looking at it and yelled, “I’ll buy it!”

Another time a collector beat me to a pulp cover painting and I was consumed with feelings of jealousy and hatred. The only thing that stopped me from trying to yank it out of his hands was the fact that he was a lot younger than me and could pound me into the floor before I made my getaway.

It’s a pulp jungle out there as author Frank Gruber once said, and every man for himself. Since I couldn’t sleep the night before, I got up at 4 AM and waited for the van to arrive. For the last several years, a group of us have been renting a van and driving to Columbus from New Jersey. We have to rent a van because a normal car would not hold all our acquisitions.

Only veteran, long-time collectors are allowed in this van and you have to have a thick skin because we are prone to joke and laugh at each other. We even use insults in order to try and get an advantage over one another. Once again to pass the time, we talked about bizarre and crazy pulp collectors that we have known.

Horror Stories 38-04-05I recounted the story of a friend who wanted to steal art from the art display and another friend who picked up girls by leering and saying, “the mole men want your eyes.” It seemed to work, but I never tried it because all I’m interested in at the pulp conventions are books, pulps, and original art. Everybody can have sex, but to hell with it during the pulp convention!

After nine hours of driving, we arrived in Columbus. We quickly checked into the Hyatt Regency and once again I marveled at the size of the hotel and convention center area. I got lost more than once. Maybe that’s a result from all the years that I’ve spent alone in a room happily reading. That’s my ideal of a good time–reading a good book.

Since our driver, Ed Hulse, was giving a lecture at Ohio State’s Thompson Library, we went to listen to him talk about the ancestors of Batman. For an hour and a half, Ed discussed the various pulp crime-fighters. Eric Johnson, a professor at Ohio State, drove us over to the library. He has organized these annual lectures each year during PulpFest and this one was especially enjoyable.

Hulse Lecture at OSU

Upon returning to the hotel, we registered for the convention and set up our tables. Thursday’s evening presentations discussed the influence of Fu Manchu on popular culture and “Hollywood and the Hero Pulps.” Afterward, we watched the first five chapters of The Spider’s Web. Starring Warren Hull and Iris Meredith, this movie serial has never been commercially released, but is available on the bootleg market. In my opinion, this is one of the very best serials ever made. It faithfully follows the spirit of the Spider novels and is non-stop action. Five chapters were screened each night for three consecutive evenings.

My favorite scene in The Spider’s Web involves a little old lady in a dress fighting the Spider. I know it’s a henchman, but the scene is funny as hell seeing a woman in a dress and white wig fighting the Spider. I guess the Spider didn’t think it was funny because when the little old lady tried to run away from him, he calmly shoots her in the back. I almost had an accident laughing. One of the great scenes in movie history. I guess the movie code censors didn’t preview the serial because they would have demanded the scene be cut. The poor little old lady. I loved it!

I mentioned the competition between collectors above. Sometimes it can misfire. For instance when the collector took the Cartier drawing away from me, I was very jealous. He paid more than it was worth at $450, but I was still unhappy. However, the next day I found six more Cartier drawings, each priced at only $160, plus they were signed! Needless to say, I took great enjoyment in showing my friend that he had overpaid about $300. I was happy to see that he was crushed and I took advantage of his sadness to eagerly push ahead of him and buy some pulps. It’s true that we have been friends for forty years, but we are talking about our collections here! It’s dog eat dog!

Next to the dealers’ room, I noticed hundreds of women shrieking and yelling at another convention. It seemed to involve baskets and shopping. In fact one lady on the elevator asked me if I had found any good shopping bargains. I quickly told her, with a superior air, that I was a member of the PulpFest convention. She asked with great puzzlement “What’s Pulpfest?” Since I only had something like fifteen seconds on the elevator to explain, I simply muttered it was a convention for book collectors. She repeated in a tone of wonderment, “Book collectors?” As I said, the non-collector will never understand the collector.

Western Story 37-02-20Now, you might wonder what I brought to sell and what I bought for my own collection. Recently, I was lucky enough (or perhaps a non-collector would say, “unlucky enough”), to obtain over 1,000 issues of Western Story Magazine, 1919-1949. I already had most of the issues, but I needed a few more, plus I’m always looking for upgrades. So I passed many of the Max Brand issues on to a friend, but that left me with many duplicates. So I boxed up a couple hundred issues, mainly 1936-1939, and priced them at only $5 each. The 1920s I wanted $15 each, but it was amusing to watch the many collectors walk by perhaps the biggest bargain in the dealers’ room, sneering at Western Story issues for only $5.

However, there were a few who realized that I may have taken leave of my senses and bought all the issues I had before I was committed to the local insane asylum. I’m talking about fellow out-of-control collectors like Matt Moring, David Saunders, and Randy Vanderbeek. These guys know a bargain when they see it! By the way, I’ll try and remember to forward a photo of me looking at the Western Story pulps on my table.

I also sold several cancelled checks from the files of Popular Publications and Munsey. Again, there are a few collectors that know these are extremely rare and unusual.

What did I buy? The best and rarest item was a bound volume of a magazine called Romance. Despite its name, it was not a love pulp and during its short life of only twelve issues published in 1919-1920, Romance was the companion magazine to the great Adventure Magazine. I’ve been hunting for decades for this title and have only found three or four issues. This volume contained six of the twelve issues and made me very happy. Next to it was the crazy magazine The Scrap Book, so I bought these bound volumes as well.

Web Terror Stories 63-11I also bought 24 issues of various crime digests, the ones that tried to imitate Manhunt in the 1950s. I used to have these issues, but since they are quite unreadable, I sold them years ago. If a collector lives long enough though, he often will start collecting items that he had previously sold. The covers are nice, showing all sorts of violence against women. Sorry ladies, but digest and pulp collectors seem to like these covers and they bring high prices. I’m talking about such crime digests as Two-Fisted Tales, Offbeat, Guilty, Keyhole, and Web Terror.

I also bought several issues of Ghost Stories. Despite the claim that these are true stories, they are really fiction. Since I’ve been at the collecting game so long, I’ve filled in most of my wants, but I did manage to find a Dime Detective that I still needed. Also an FBI Detective and a Detective Story from 1922.

I bought several pieces of pulp art in addition to the six Edd Cartier drawings, such a Kelly Freas paperback cover painting and other things too numerous to name. But I do want to mention the Walter Baumhofer art that David Saunders had at his table. He had something like a hundred pieces of art that may have been used as interior illustrations in various pulp magazines. They all eventually sold and I managed to buy many of them. David threw in a great photo of Baumhofer.

Speaking of David Saunders, I would like to like to discuss the various panels and discussions, but there were too many for me to cover here. They all are interesting, and that is another thing that Pulpfest is known for–the excellent quality of its evening programming. The PulpFest website has a complete listing, but I would like to mention two that I found to be of great interest. My two favorites were the presentation that David Saunders gave on Walter Baumhofer and the talk that Chris Kalb gave on hero pulp premiums and promotions.

David Saunders, as the son of artist Norman Saunders, knew Walter Baumhofer. There is no one better qualified to talk about Baumhofer. What a great discussion, and I hope PulpFest has David Saunders talk about pulp artists at every convention. David has one of the best websites on the internet where he discusses pulp artists. The site is called The Field Guide to Wild American Pulp Artists.

On Saturday evening, Chris Kalb, the designer of PulpFest‘s advertising and its website, offered a talk on pulp premiums. After more than an hour on the subject and with much more to share, the PulpFest committee asked the audience if they’d like to hear more on the subject in 2014. So expect Chris back in a year to share additional information about the pulp premiums.

Spider Pencil Ad

The auction was mainly from the collection of Al Tonik and concentrated on the research books that this great pulp scholar had accumulated over the years. I also buy reference books as they are published so I had almost all of these items.

Several pulp reprints and books about the pulps made their debut at PulpFest 2013 including Wordslingers, by Will Murray, The Blood ‘n’ Thunder Guide to Pulp Fiction, by Ed Hulse, Hidden Ghosts, a collection of Paul Powers’ fiction edited by Laurie Powers, Paperback Confidential: Crime Writers of the Paperback Era, by Brian Ritt, and from Altus Press, The Complete Adventures of Hazard and Partridge, by Robert Pearsall with an excellent and long introduction by pulp scholar, Nathan Madison. We really do live in the golden age of pulp reprints and reference books.

In 2012, Tony Davis retired as the editor of the convention’s program book, The Pulpster, but this year the new editor, William Lampkin, carried on the tradition by editing a fine collection of articles. My favorite is the piece on Daisy Bacon by Laurie Powers.

The 2013 Munsey Award was given to pulp scholar and anthologist, Garyn G. Roberts. Congratualtions Garyn, you really deserve this recognition.

Okay, there must be something I can complain about, right? Nope, no drunks giving me a sour look, no complaints about the lighting in the dealers room, no bitching about no hospitality room. I just went to the bar on the second floor and acted like a collector. All the non-collectors gave me plenty of space! So, I would like to thank the PulpFest organizing committee for all their hard work. Mike Chomko, Jack Cullers, Ed Hulse, and Barry Traylor, thank you, thank you!

And to all you collectors and readers out there. Make plans for PulpFest next year. Do it now and no excuses accepted! Even if we die, we can haunt the place.

**** - PulpFest 2013 - ****

2013/08/13

PulpFest 2013 Preliminary

For the second straight year, the Hyatt Regency Columbus was host to “Summer’s Great Pulp Con.” With its spacious dealers’ room and immaculate accommodations, the hotel was very much appreciated by the nearly 400 pulp fiction fans in attendance at PulpFest 2013 from July 25th through July 28th. And the Arena District that surrounds the hotel is simply beautiful and filled with restaurants.

In the pages following, you’ll be able to read several convention reports from sources such as Mystery*File and  Laurie’s Wild West. You’ll also find many of the posts that were released on the convention’s website in the time leading up to the 2013 convention and learn about the wide-ranging and thoughtful programming of the fifth PulpFest, the way the convention was promoted,  our award winners, and much, much more.

If you’d like to hear recordings of some of the panel presentations from PulpFest 2013, please visit Ric Croxton’s podcast about books, comics, movie serials, old-time radio, and TV series, The Book Cave and search for “PulpFest.”

Fu Manchu panelPulpFest‘s Fu Manchu panel featured (from left to right) Will Murray, Nathan Madison, moderator Ed Hulse, Win Scott Eckert, William Patrick Maynard, and Gene Christie.

**** - 2012 Dealers - ****

2012/11/18

Thank you to the following exhibitors who filled our dealers’ room at the Hyatt Regency Columbus with collectible pulp magazines and digests, vintage paperbacks, first edition hardcovers and series books, original art, B-movies and serials, collectible comic books, and more. Many of them will be returning to Columbus for PulpFest 2013. Please support them with your business.

 

Adventure House/John Gunnison

John Gunnison will be offering his usual extensive stock of pulp magazines as well as High Adventure, G-8, and the many pulp replicas and collections he has published under the Adventure House banner. For more info, please visit http://adventurehouse.com/.

Age of Aces/Bill Mann & the Kalb Brothers

Publishers of the best-selling The Spider vs. the Empire State, Bill Mann and Chris and David Kalb will have their line of pulp reprints at PulpFest. From Captain Babyface to The Three Mosquitoes, look to Age of Aces for the best in pulp fiction. Learn more by visiting Ages of Aces online.

Airship 27/Ron Fortier & Rob Davis

Headed by Ron Fortier and Rob Davis, Airship 27 is a leading producer of new pulp fiction. Starring the classic heroes of yesteryear–from The Black Bat and Sherlock Holmes to Ki-Gor and The Moon Man–you’ll find plenty of thrills by visiting their Online Hangar.

Jim and Walter Albert

These collecting brothers from Arkansas and Pennsylvania will have pulps, paperbacks, hardcovers, fanzines, and much more at their PulpFest 2012 table. They’ll be offering pretty much everything under the moons of Mars! So be sure to pay them a visit.

Battered Silicon/George Vanderburgh

George has published over 600 books, including a wide variety of detective fiction and Sherlock Holmes scholarship as well as his Lost Treasures of the Pulps series that reprints many highly regarded pulp classics. His website is at www.batteredbox.com/.

Brian Earl Brown

Brian is the official editor of PEAPS, the Pulp Era Amateur Press Society. He will be selling back numbers of the group’s mailings at his table as well as looking for interested parties who might want to join the organization. PEAPS is celebrating its 25th anniversary this month.

Black Dog Books/Tom Roberts

Tom Roberts and his associate, Gene Christie, will be peddling a wide variety of pulp reprints produced under the Black Dog Books imprint. Black Dog publishes everything from hero pulps to weird menace to classic adventure yarns. Learn more by visiting Black Dog Books.

Mike Chomko

Munsey winner Mike Chomko is known as the “one-stop seller for your pulp reprint and reference needs.” At PulpFest 2012, he’ll have his usual wide selection of such material. Please visit the Mike Chomko Books website and download a copy of his latest catalog.

Jack Cullers

If you’re looking for pulps and out-of-print paperbacks, pulp reprints or hardbound fiction and non-fiction, find your way to Jack’s table. He always has a wide variety of such material. You may just come across something you’ve been questing after for many years.

Curious Bookshop/Ray Walsh

As usual, Ray will be offering a broad array of paper collectibles–pulps, paperbacks, original artwork, collectible hardcovers, vintage comic books, and more. He’ll be bringing it all from East Lansing, Michigan, home to the Curious Book Shop and Classicon for over forty years.

Dark Star Books/Gary Diedriech

Located about an hour from Columbus in Yellow Springs, Ohio, Dark Star will be offering a variety of material including pulps, digests, and collectible hardcovers and paperbacks. Through the end of July, used hardcovers are 30% while graphic novels are 20% off at their nearby store!

Dave’s Comic Vault/David White

Located in suburban Chicago, Dave has been collecting for 35 years and selling since 2006, mostly through ebay. At PulpFest he will have many science fiction pulps as well as some hero and horror. Dave’s Comic Vault will also have fanzines, paperbacks, digests, and pulp reprints.

Dearly Departed Books/S. & L. Edwards

Longtime Ohio booksellers Scott and Linda Edwards will have some Shadow pulps and premiums and one of Walter Gibson’s typewriters at PulpFest. Their specialty is pulp, paperback, and first edition genre fiction. Visit the Dearly Departed Books website for further details.

Doug Ellis and Deb Fulton

Two of the founders of the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention, Doug and Deb will be offering a wide selection of general fiction, science-fiction and other pulps as well as original art and other collectibles. They’ll also have copies of Pulp Vault #14, the longest pulp fanzine ever published.

Bob Flowers

This good-natured collector from Illinois usually has a little bit of everything including pulps, paperbacks, fanzines, and related material. His offerings come from a wide range of genres–hero, detective, adventure, science fiction, and Western. Shop with Bob for variety.

Galaxy Press/John Goodwin

The publisher of the works of L. Ron Hubbard and the Writers of the Future series, Galaxy Press has reprinted over 150 pulp fiction stories in paperback and as award-winning audio theater productions as part of a program to popularize pulp fiction as high-interest stories for readers of all ages.

Ren Garcia

Ren is an author based in Columbus, Ohio and the creator of the League of Elder, a very retro steampunk series. His The Temple of the Exploding Head trilogy and two other League books have been published by Loconeal Publishing, a small-press publisher located in Amherst, Ohio.

Girasol Collectables/Neil & Leigh Mechem

Girasol will be selling pulp magazines, their own lines of quality pulp replicas and pulp reprints–including their Pulp Doubles–books about pulps, and other related items. To browse their impressive assortment of offerings, please visit their well-designed website at Girasol Collectables.

Jonathan and Larry “Doc” Grubb

A collector since the 1960s, Doc Grubb will be bringing a large collection of Burroughs material to PulpFest. He’ll have many first editions, pulp fanzines, and reprints of this author’s fantastic adventures, all at great prices. Jonathan and Larry Grubb hail from Maryland. This is their first PulpFest.

Art Hackathorn

A specialist in detective and Western pulps, Art will also have some collectible hardcovers and paperbacks at his tables. He’ll also be carrying some digests from the mystery and Western fields. Art is one of the leading dealers in these fiction genres.

Haffner Press/Stephen Haffner

Stephen Haffner will be offering his handsomely produced hardcovers featuring vintage pulp fiction from Leigh Brackett, Edmond Hamilton, Henry Kuttner, C. L. Moore, Manly Wade Wellman, Jack Williamson, and others. Visit haffnerpress.com for a look at the publisher’s many fine books.

Rick Hall

Scouring flea markets and antique shows up and down the East Coast, Rick rescues pulps for the collections of his fellows in the pulp community. From Ace Detective to Zoom and everything in between, you may find a great deal amongst Rick’s “found” pulps.

Dennis Harford

A resident of Davenport, Iowa, Dennis returns to PulpFest after missing last year’s con. He was sorely missed. Pay a visit to his table during PulpFest 2012 and you’ll be surprised by what you find. Hopefully, it will be something you’ve been wanting for years.

Paul Herman

This Connecticut-based dealer and collector exhibits at many pulp and paperback conventions. He offers a wide variety of material including pulps, paperbacks, and vintage digests. He is particularly strong in the mystery and detective fields, turning up many scarce items.

Heritage Auctions

Heritage Auctions of Dallas, Texas is the world’s largest collectibles auctioneer. They take pride in being the most trusted and efficient marketplace and information resource for owners of rare collectibles and other objects of enduring value. Please visit Heritage Auctions for more details.

Mark Hickman

This Ohio dealer will have pulps, including a variety of science fiction magazines and hero pulps, as well as comics and original artwork from pulps, comics, digests, and paperbacks–a little bit of everything. Mark’s father was the late Lynn Hickman, founder of The Pulp Era Amateur Press Society.

Hooked on Books/Deb & Wayne Keil

Selling books since 1975, the Keils are well known at Midwestern book and paper shows. Specializing in vintage mystery and science fiction, their inventory includes collectible paperbacks, digests, magazines, pulps, and hardcovers. For additional details, please visit Hooked on Books.

Jim and Ruth Keegan

The creators of The Adventures of Two-Gun Bob comic strip for Dark Horse Comics, the Keegans will be exhibiting some of their terrific Robert E. Howard-inspired artwork in ourdealers’ room. We’re happy to welcome them to PulpFest 2012. Please be sure to visit their display.

Ray Kukurka

An artist from Michigan who works in paint and pencil, Ray’s art is inspired by the pulp and narrative art of such masters as Virgil Finlay, Frank R. Paul, Howard Pyle, and N. C. Wyeth. Visit his website for more.

Dave LePlae

A first time PulpFest dealer, Dave is a longtime pulp collector and convention attendee. He will have a selection of original pulp magazines in a range of conditions for sale, including detective, adventure, Western, and other genres. Welcome aboard, Dave.

John McMahan

John hails from Oklahoma where he has long been active as a fan and dealer. At PulpFest 2012, John will be selling pulps, books, comics, original art, movie posters, and more. He trades on ebay as mybckpages, selling books, comics, magazines, post cards, and many other paper collectibles.

Main St. Music/David Schmidt

From Waterloo, IL, David will be bringing pulps and digests, collectible paperbacks, original artwork, Arkham House books, vintage comics, and other paper ephemera. Visit Main Street Music for more information about this fine Midwestern dealer of paper collectibles.

Thomas Martin

Coming from western Ohio, Tom will be selling detective, hero, and science fiction pulps; an extensive selection of crime digests such as Guilty, Off Beat, and Trapped; and a wide assortment of collectible and reader paperbacks, hardcovers, film magazines, and other pop culture material.

Walker Martin

A collector whose activity dates back to the early days of pulp fandom, Walker has owned practically every pulp at least once. A resident of New Jersey, he’ll be selling pulps, original artwork, and one-of-a-kind canceled checks from the files of Munsey and Popular Publications.

Bill Maynard

Dr. Fu Manchu was “…the yellow peril incarnate in one man…” and William Patrick Maynard is the author of the first authorized Fu Manchu thrillers in over twenty years. He will be selling and signing copies of The Terror of Fu Manchu and The Destiny of Fu Manchu, and some pulp-related collectibles.

Meteor House/Michael Croteau

Mike Croteau will be offering the latest publications from Meteor House, back issues of Farmerphile, select items from the Philip Jose Farmer estate sale, and books authored or edited by FarmerCon attendees. You can find further details at The Official Philip Jose Farmer Home Page.

Murania Press/Ed Hulse

In addition to his award-winning fanzine Blood ‘n’ Thunder and its companion, Blood ‘n’ Thunder’s Western Movie Roundup, Ed will be premiering several new Murania Press books at the convention. He also have his usual smattering of high-grade pulp magazines.

Will Murray

The author of over fifty novels and assorted books, Will plans to offer copies of the first three volumes of his The All-New Wild Adventures of Doc Savage, as well as Writings in Bronze, a collection of his Doc Savage non-fiction. Of course, he’ll be glad to sign your purchases.

Phil Nelson

This personable dealer from Waverly, Ohio will be armed with a wide variety of pulps, from Argosy and Detective Fiction Weekly to Doc Savage and Amazing Stories. He’ll also have paperbacks, comics and other items. He’s a fan of North-West Stories, Top-Notch, and detective fiction.

Craig Poole

A resident of Virginia, Craig has been attending pulp conventions for years. He will have several pieces of vintage original cover art, representing a mix of genres, but with science fiction the main focus. He will have paperback cover art and, perhaps, a few digest or pulp cover paintings.

Laurie Powers

This California resident, creator of the Laurie’s Wild West blog, will be selling copies of Riding the Pulp Trail, a collection of her grandfather Paul Powers’ pulp fiction, and Pulp Writer, a memoir of his writing days. Laurie is writing a biography of Daisy Bacon, editor of Love Story Magazine.

Mike Resnick

Described as one of the leading raconteurs in the world of science fiction, Mike will be accompanied to PulpFest by his wife, Carol, likewise a writer. They’ll be in our dealers’ room, ready to make your acquaintance. Stop by his table, ready to be regaled. Mike will also be speaking on Friday evening, August 10th.

Joseph Saine

A full-time antique toy dealer from Rossford, Ohio by day and an avid paperback reader and collector by night, Joe will have several large boxes of pulps fresh from an attic, a variety of paperbacks, great condition Big Little Books, and a nice box of golden age comics.

Sanctum Books/Anthony Tollin

Our 2011 Munsey Award winner will be selling all of his fantastic pulp reprints–The Avenger, Doc Savage, The Shadow, and The Whisperer–four of the greatest pulp heroes in one of the best formats imaginable. Please visit Sanctum Books to learn more about his latest publications.

David Saunders

The creator of the Munsey, pulp art expert David will be selling signed copies of his biographies of pulp artists, including his father, Norman Saunders, and Spicy artist H. J. Ward. Visit David’s website at www.pulpartists.com for brief, illustrated biographies of many pulp artists.

Jerry Schattenburg

This  knowledgeable and respected dealer and collector from the Kansas City area sells pulps from a wide range of genres–science fiction, detective, hero, adventure, and more. At PulpFest, he’ll also have offerings of science-fiction and fantasy first editions and some original artwork.

Mark Schultz

Best known for his award-winning comics series Xenozoic Tales, Mark will be exhibiting some of his Robert E. Howard-inspired artwork in the PulpFest dealers’ room. Remember, the best way to meet up with this talented artist is on the convention trail. We’re glad he’ll be with us.

Tom Skemp

Specializing in horror and science fiction, Tom is back for a third go-round as a PulpFest dealer. A resident of Latrobe, Pennsylvania, he will be selling collectible hardcovers and a variety of paperbacks as well as some limited and British editions. Check out his table for some chills and thrills.

Tim’s Books/Tim Paxton

Tim Paxton of Grand Rapids, Michigan specializes in paperbacks and small press, first edition hardcovers, dealing mainly in high-grade science fiction, fantasy, and horror as well as mysteries and pulp-related material. Check out the Tim’s Books website at AbeBooks.com.

Barry Traylor

Although he won’t have a table at the convention, Barry is the “go-to” guy when it comes to the PulpFest auctions. If you have any questions concerning our auctions, please write to barry@pulpfest.com or visit the “Auctions” page under “Programming.”

Randy Vanderbeek

A pulp collector for about forty years, Randy is from Kalamazoo, Michigan. She will be bringing hundreds of pulp magazines from all genres for sale or trade. Of course, the more she sells, the more she’ll be able to buy from the many fine dealers who will be attending PulpFest 2012.

Jon Wehler

This personable dealer and collector offers pulps, original art, and other paper collectibles. He’ll also have lots of vintage paperbacks from many different genres. Based in Ohio, he exhibits at a variety of book and paper shows throughout the Midwest. And he’s a nice guy.

Chuck Welch

Chuck helps to manage our website and social media outlets like our Twitter account. He’ll be offering information about the social media aspect of Pulpfest–the website and other online methods we use to promote the festival. Check out Chuck’s Hidalgo Trading Company.

Wild Cat Books/Ron Hanna

The award-winning publisher of cutting-edge fiction in the tradition of the pulps, Ron offers everything from science fiction and fantasy to hero pulp and horror under the Wild Cat Books imprint. He’ll also have pulps, paperbacks, comics, monster magazines, and more.

Yammering Magpie/Peter Marchionna

A classic film dealer from the Chicago area offering DVDs of some of the best and rarest movies from the silent era, pre-code, film noir, Westerns, and cult movies. Visit the Magpie at PulpFest for a taste of classic cinema. Remember to turn off your cell phone before the feature begins.

Plus a small number of dealers who asked not to be listed.

**** - 2012 Munsey Nominees - ****

2012/11/18

There were eighteen nominating petitions for the 2012 Munsey Award that met the criteria for the award. In the interest of manageability, the final ballot was pared down to include those individuals who had received the most nominations. Many thanks from the PulpFest organizing committee to all who participated in the nominating process.

The nominee ballot was forwarded to the past winners of the Munsey and Lamont Awards who then selected the person to be honored. The 2012 Munsey Award, along with the Rusty Hevelin Service Award, was presented during Saturday evening’s programming on August 11th, 2012.

Congratulations to all the nominees for the 2012 Munsey.

 

Camille Cazedessus

“Caz” has been publishing a fanzine devoted to pulp fiction for more than fifty years, first as Erb-dom and later as The Fantastic Collector and Pulpdom. All told, he has edited & published 220 issues, as well as several books. In its earliest incarnation, Caz’s magazine focused on the work of Edgar Rice Burroughs, presenting background information and bibliographic details about the author’s work as it appeared in magazines, books, comics, and movies. Erb-dom won a Hugo Award in 1966. In the late nineties, Caz rechristened his fanzine as Pulpdom, a publication devoted to “studying the authors that wrote for the pulps and reprinting the ‘fantastic adventure’ type stories from pulp magazines.” With the help of various writers and indexers including Gary Lovisi, Al Lybeck, Jerry Page and, most recently, Mike Taylor, Pulpdom has explored nearly every pre-1932 general fiction pulp ever published, including Argosy, All-Story, Blue Book, Cavalier, Popular, and other titles.

J. Randolph Cox

For more than 45 years, Randy has conducted research into pulp magazines and dime novels. He has also served as editor-publisher of Dime Novel Round-Up for over twenty years. His bibliography, Man of Magic & Mystery: A Guide to the Work of Walter B. Gibson, is an excellent resource for those seeking greater understanding of the work of the man who created The Shadow. With David S. Siegel, Randy authored Flashgun Casey: Crime Photographer, a booklength study of the character originally created for Black Mask by George Harmon Coxe. Other books he has authored include Masters of Mystery and Detective Fiction: An Annotated Bibliography and The Dime Novel Companion: A Source Book. Randy has donated his collection of comic books and newspaper strips fanzines, pulps, series books, story papers, and other materials to the University of Minnesota Libraries and is in the process of donating his extensive collection of Walter Gibson books and Shadow pulps and comics to the author’s alma mater, Colgate University.

Jack and Sally Cullers (winners Rusty Hevelin Service Award)

Jack has worked quietly and tirelessly for the pulp community for decades. A longtime volunteer for any number of pulp conventions, Jack has ferried guests of honor to and from airports and made sure they had a friendly face with whom to dine. He has stuffed and addressed envelopes, arranged for advertising, organized auctions, and done many other behind-the-scenes tasks, selflessly and without seeking accolades. Time and again, he has welcomed newcomers to the hobby, even inviting them to his home for dinner during their earliest pulp conventions. He has offered space at his dealer tables for down-on-their-luck pulpsters unable to attend conventions. As the chairman of the PulpFest committee, he has worked to assure that convention guests, dealers, presenters, and attendees are treated fairly and respectfully, helping everyone to feel welcome and comfortable at the convention. Of course, Jack could not have done all that he has done without the support of his wife, Sally, herself a longtime pulp con volunteer, often helping with registrations and auctions. His children and friends have also lent a hand. Come convention time, the “Cullers Clan” is hard at work, making sure things run as smoothly as possible.

Ron Hanna

For nearly two decades Ron, through his Wild Cat Books operation, has selflessly served the pulp community by maintaining interest in the great pulps. Beginning with his fanzine Lost Sanctum, Ron has published material by both new and old writers and artists, exhibiting his great love and respect for the pulps. Some of the books that he has published include Master of the Pulps: The Collected Essays of Nick Carr, The Handbook of Bronze: The Definitive Guide for the Doc Savage Collector, and The Captain Future Handbook. Long before anyone else, he took his love of pulp fiction to the next level and began presenting brand new pulp stories and artwork by some of today’s finest creators, helping to set the stage for the “New Pulp” movement. More recently, he has revived the classic science-fiction magazine, Startling Stories. Ron’s work to keep the spirit of the old pulps alive has cost him a great deal both personally and financially, but he keeps giving it everything he can. His efforts come from his heart and his genuine love for the pulps.

Stephen T. Miller

Steve has been helping to index the pulps for years. Along with Michael Cook, he compiled Garland Publishing’s Mystery, Detective, and Espionage Fiction: A Checklist of Fiction in U. S. Pulp Magazines, 1915-1974, an exceptional resource for collectors of not only detective pulps, but also hero and some adventure magazines. With Phil Stephensen-Payne and William G. Contento, Steve recently revised this classic index, issued on CD-ROM by Locus Press as Crime, Mystery and Gangster Fiction Magazine Index, 1915-2010. Together with Bill Contento, Steve also compiled Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Weird Fiction Magazine Index (1890-2006), a guide to more than 900 different magazines, published on CD-ROM by Locus Press and updated periodically by the publisher. Over the years, Steve has also helped many different people with pulp-related research, sharing his knowledge as well as his collection with them.

Matt Moring (winner 2012 Munsey Award)

In a few years, Matt’s Altus Press has published many rare pulp stories and non-fiction books dealing with the characters and history of the pulps. To date he has published all of Kendell Foster Crossen’s Green Lama stories, half of the adventures of Secret Agent X, and collections of lesser known characters such as Johnston McCulley’s The Man in Purple, Paul Ernst’s Seekay, and Lester Dent’s The Blond Adder. More recently, he has reprinted Les Savage’s Senorita Scorpion stories, Fred Nebel’s Tough Dick Donahue private eye adventures, and many others. His Dime Detective Companion is a superb reference to one of the leading detective magazines of the pulp era, while The Revised Complete Chronology of Bronze, written by Rick Lai, dissects the adventures of Doc Savage. Forthcoming is the thirtieth anniversary issue of Echoes, one of the best pulp history fanzines of all time. Together with Will Murray, Matt revived the Doc Savage series, publishing brand new stories after a twenty-year absence. The Altus Press website is also an excellent reference source featuring links to The Pulp Superhero Index and The Echoes Index. Such energy needs to be recognized and rewarded. Matt Moring and others like him are the future of the pulp collecting hobby.

Curt Phillips

Curt Phillips founded and continues to moderate the PulpMags newsgroup on Yahoo, a forum for lively and informative discussions for pulp fans for over a dozen years. This group has been bringing together old fans, new fans, fans who have never been to a pulp convention, and others, all of them sharing info about the hobby and the history of the pulps. Curt and the group have been great at promoting both the hobby and pulp conventions. During an era when the amateur press association format and postal correspondence have declined, Curt has fostered dialog and immediacy in conversing about pulps through the newsgroup. Other groups and Facebook have launched since PulpMags was born, but the latter maintains a well-rounded, come-one-come-all feel that invites discussion about everything from All-Story to Westerns to love and romance magazines and beyond. It seems like an online version of the PulpFest hospitality suite, where all pulp topics are welcome. Curt also founded and moderates the VintagePaperbacks newsgroup, served as the editor of the Pulp Era Amateur Press Society for a number of years, and has helped a wide variety of people with research projects and collecting.

Laurie Powers

The granddaughter of pulp author Paul S. Powers, Laurie was introduced to the pulp community in 2007 through the publication of Pulp Writer: Twenty Years in the American Grub Street, an autobiography and appreciation of her grandfather. Later that same year, she started Laurie’s Wild West, an Internet blog site that has become a favorite destination for those interested in the pulps. She has published articles on “Who Read the Pulps?,” female pulp writers, a series of articles put together by various pulp fans entitled “My Favorite Pulps,” and more. Although relatively new to the world of pulps, Laurie has shown tremendous support for the community by spreading the word about pulp fiction and publicizing the conventions that salute our wonderful hobby. She is currently working on a biography of pulp editor Daisy Bacon.

Garyn Roberts

Professor Roberts is the Chair of the Communications/English Discipline at Northwestern Michigan College. He is also an unabashed fan of the pulps. Garyn has written extensively about the pulps, both professionally and as a fan. He has edited or co-edited some of the best collections from the pulps including A Cent a Story: The Best from Ten Detective Aces, More Tales of the Defective Detective in the Pulps, The Compleat Adventures of the Moon Man, The Magical Mysteries of Don Diavolo, and The Compleat Great Merlini Saga. His insightful essays in these books and elsewhere have led to a greater understanding of the pulps both inside and outside of the pulp community. His collection, The Prentice Hall Anthology of Science Fiction and Fantasy, a college level textbook, is notable for the attention paid to the pulp magazines. Additionally, Garyn has helped other researchers with various pulp-related projects and is a regular attendee of pulp conventions where he often serves as a presenter and panelist.

George Vanderburgh

Through his Battered Silicon Dispatch Box, George has published over 600 books, many of them directly related to the pulps. He was largely responsible for finally getting all of Fred Davis’ classic Moon Man stories back into print. And what about his Peter the Brazen series, his five volumes featuring the work of Seabury Quinn, The Compleat Adventures of the Park Avenue Hunt Club, his Green Ghost set, The Compleat Saga of John Solomon, and The Adventures of the Golden Amazon? He has also given us numerous collections of detective fiction, including volumes featuring the Thinking Machine, Dr. Thorndyke and Martin Hewitt. Looking at his website, his future plans include several books reprinting pulp authors who have been unjustly forgotten. Along with Robert Weinberg, George served as the co-editor of Arkham House until the death of April Derleth. A regular attendee of pulp conventions, George has helped both longtime and new fans to collect the tales of some of the most fantastic heroes from the pulps.

Dan Zimmer

For many years, Dan has been working to promote greater awareness of pulp artists by producing and distributing Illustration Magazine. He has tirelessly contributed his time, expertise and his personal wealth to promote a more respectful awareness of the artistic accomplishments of pulp artists through the deluxe publication of the many biographical articles on pulp artists that have appeared in his magazine, distributed around the globe. He has done this despite the overwhelming fact that his creative vision is far beyond receiving any reasonable economic return for his efforts. Dan’s devotion to classic American illustrators is manifest in the elegant presentation of his magazine and has helped to turn the tide in our culture’s growing appreciation of pulp art. Additionally, he has supported the pulp community by drawing his readers’ attention to various pulp conventions, including the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention, Pulpcon, and PulpFest. Dan has also served as the sponsor of Windy City’s annual pulp art exhibit and created the limited edition print of David Saunder’s Munsey Award painting without cost to the PulpFest organizing committee.

Other Nominees

Also nominated were William G. Contento, indexer and organizer of the online FictionMags Index; Martin Grams, author of The Shadow: The History and Mystery of the Radio Program and other popular culture books and articles, as well as the organizer of the Mid-Atlantic Nostalgia Convention; Don Herron, a major researcher into the lives and works of various authors including Robert E. Howard and Philip K. Dick and the originator of San Francisco’s celebrated Dashiell Hammett Tour; Chris Kalb, art designer for a number of pulp reprint publishers, including Age of Aces Books and Murania Press, publisher of Blood ‘n’ Thunder as well as the designer of the PulpFest website; Phil Stephensen-Payne, a prolific bibliographer and pulp researcher based in the United Kingdom whose Galactic Central website contains an online checklist of pulp magazines that is attempting to include the cover to every pulp ever published; Mike Taylor, writer and researcher for Pulpdom; and Howard Wright, editor and publisher of The Bronze Gazette, the long-running Doc Savage fanzine. Again, congratulations to all of the nominees.

**** - Promotional Items - ****

2012/11/18

A big part of PulpFest 2012’s success was due to its promotional materials, all designed by Chris Kalb. Below you’ll find PDFs of our full-page flyer, the front and back of the post card used to promote the convention at book fairs, comic shows, science-fiction conventions, and the like, and our 2012 logo. If you would like to download any of these files, please click on its image.

 

The artwork above, by J. Allen St. John, originally served as the front cover of the March 1941 issue of Amazing Stories, illustrating Edgar Rice Burroughs’ John Carter story, “The City of Mummies.” Artwork courtesy of The Korshak Collection and Vanguard Productions, publisher of The Paintings of J. Allen St. John. John Carter is a trademark of Edgar Rice Burroughs, Inc.

Margaret Brundage created this depiction of Robert E. Howard’s Conan for the front cover of the August 1934 issue of Weird Tales. It illustrated the story, “The Devil in Iron.” Thank you to Girasol Collectables for providing the image.

For questions about promoting PulpFest or about our website, please contact Mike Chomko at mike@pulpfest.com. Thank you for helping to promote the summer’s great pulp con.

**** - PulpFest 2012 Blogroll - ****

2012/11/18

Following is a play-by-play look at the creation of PulpFest 2012, told through the posts that originally appeared on the convention’s home page during 2011 and 2012. They began in November 2011, soon after the organizing committee started to plan, arrange, and promote the 2012 convention.

PulpFest Has a New Home

(Nov.  7, 2011) The PulpFest organizing committee is delighted to announce that next year’s convention will be held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in downtown Columbus, Ohio—a bigger and better venue for a con that has been growing by ten percent per year since its start in 2009. PulpFest 2012 will begin on Thursday evening, August 9th, and run through Sunday, August 12th.

PulpFest chairman Jack Cullers has spent the last three months scouting hotels to find one better equipped to host our steadily growing conference. The committee investigated the possibility of moving to other cities, including Akron, Cincinnati, Cleveland, and Pittsburgh, before electing to remain in Columbus, from which PulpFest has drawn a substantial number of new members to our community.

Size, location, affordability, and availability are just a few of the many factors that must be taken into consideration when selecting a venue. After careful consideration, we settled on the Hyatt Regency because it not only meets our current needs but is large enough to accommodate our continued growth.  

Although PulpFest enjoyed a good working relationship with the Ramada Plaza, that hotel’s shortcomings had grown to outnumber its advantages. We think the Hyatt will be a much better fit. The downtown area is ideal for out-of-town attendees lacking rental cars; the hotel sits in the middle of the active Arena District and is just a few minutes’ walk from the trendy Short North Arts District. There are shops and restaurants galore right outside the hotel’s entrance. Ohio State University is nearby, and various tourist attractions are easily accessible, offering numerous entertainment options for PulpFest members accompanied by their families.

The Hyatt Regency recently completed a $12 million refurbishment of its guest rooms, adding WiFi access, iHome Stereo with iPod docking access, and other amenities commensurate with the hotel’s size and stature. Attendees who don’t feel like going outside for meals or libations can take advantage of the Hyatt’s spacious cafe, coffee bar, and cocktail lounge. Fitness-minded members can take a break from shopping in the dealers room to enjoy the hotel’s indoor pool, spa services, and 24-hour gym.

Dealers should have an easier time loading and unloading their wares, thanks to a separate hotel entrance leading directly to a freight elevator that stops on the floor where our huckster room will be located. The Hyatt’s ballroom will easily accommodate more tables than did the Ramada Plaza’s conference center.

The many advantages afforded by our new home will result in an increase in our sleeping-room rate to $109 per night, which includes one free parking pass. However, since the Hyatt Regency is significantly more spacious and comfortable, we believe attendees will be very pleased with our choice. We’re also confident that you’ll appreciate the hotel’s proximity to a wide variety of shops, eateries, and other attractions.

In the weeks and months to come, we’ll be presenting you with more information about the Hyatt Regency and our plans for PulpFest 2012, which we are determined to make the best yet. So please be sure to revisit us frequently for the latest news!


Happy Holidays from PulpFest

(Dec. 24, 2011) Here’s wishing everyone the happiest of holiday seasons. Hopefully, this “Santa of the Gas Bags” has a copy of your favorite pulp magazine in one of his sacks to help tide you over ’til April 29th when the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention will celebrate the 100th anniversary of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Tarzan of the Apes.

After you’ve finished celebrating the winter holidays, please stop back at the PulpFest website for some exciting news about next Summer’s Great Pulp Convention. Better still, sign up for our email updates by filling in the little gray box titled “E-Mail List” right here on our home page.

Many thanks to Jerry Page for sending us this great holiday cover from the December 7, 1928 issue of Street & Smith’s The Popular Magazine.The artist is not known.


Rest in Peace Rusty Hevelin

(Dec. 27, 2011) It is with heavy heart that we bid adieu to James “Rusty” Hevelin. This pillar of the pulp community passed away on Tuesday, December 27th. Active in science fiction fandom since the 1930s, Rusty was for many years the guiding light behind Pulpcon, the convention that helped to keep the memory of the pulps alive through the closing decades of the twentieth century and on into the 21st.This task has since been entrusted to PulpFest.

A veteran of the Second World War, when he served as a Marine in the South Pacific, Rusty was a member of science fiction’s First Fandom and well known as a huckster, collector, and toastmaster. In 1986, he received the Lamont Award for his longtime service to the pulp community as well as science fiction’s Big Heart Award. He was presented with the Sam Moskowitz Archive Award for excellence in science fiction collecting in 2003.

PulpFest was extremely fortunate to have Rusty attend the 2011 convention when he helped the pulp community celebrate its fortieth annual summer pulp con. At next year’s convention, we will be honoring him with a special tribute during our evening programming.


Another Giant Passes

(Jan. 2, 2012) Another giant of pulp fandom has left us. Glenn Lord passed away on December 31st, 2011 at the age of eighty. The leading proponent of the work of Robert E. Howard, Glenn worked tirelessly and selflessly for decades to see the author get his due. He was the guest of honor at Pulpcon 36 in 2007.

If you have ever enjoyed any of Robert E. Howard’s creations–Conan, Kull, Solomon Kane, or any of the countless other characters that Howard brought to life–you owe a debt of gratitude to the late Glenn Lord. Please visit REH: Two-Gun Raconteur for further testimonials about this giant of pulp and Howard fandom. May he rest in peace.


Under the Moons of Mars

(Jan. 9, 2012) During the winter of 1912, readers of the Munsey pulp, The All-Story, picked up the February issue of the magazine. It sported a cover featuring a sombreroed Mexican framed in a window. Little did they realize that they were being introduced to an author who would quickly become one of the leading practitioners of American popular fiction.

The All-Story for February 1912 featured a complete novel, ten short stories, and six serials, with “Under the Moons of Mars” listed above them all. The author of this “Romance of a soul astray,” was listed as Norman Bean, a pen name for Edgar Rice Burroughs. Hiding behind a pseudonym in his initial effort as a professional writer, Burroughs would soon become one of the best paid authors to labor for the pulp market. Later in 1912, the new author made an indelible mark on American pop culture with the appearance of “Tarzan of the Apes,” published complete in the October issue of The All-Story.

2012 marks the 100th anniversary of the publication of “Under the Moons of Mars,” better known by its book title A Princess of Mars and soon to be a major motion picture from Disney. In August, PulpFest will celebrate this momentous occasion by offering a panel entitled Pulp Visions of Mars. Additionally, author and artist David Saunders, who has written extensively on the subject of illustration, will discuss J. Allen St. John, perhaps the artist most associated with the work of Edgar Rice Burroughs. Other events are still being planned.


Sign Up for the PulpFest Times

(Jan. 9, 2012) Over the next few weeks, the PulpFest website will go through its annual overhaul. We’ll not only be updating many of the pages, but we’ll also be making several very exciting announcements (including our guest of honor). Additionally, we’ll be adding a link to the Hyatt Regency Columbus to allow you to book a room at the special convention rate.

The best way to keep abreast of changes to the website is through our email list in the little gray box to the right of our top post. It’s fast and easy to do. So join right now and be among the first to learn all there is to know about PulpFest 2012.

And don’t forget about our facebook site. You can “like” us at http://www.facebook.com/PulpFest.


Book a Room

(Jan. 11, 2012) You can now book a room at the Hyatt Regency Columbus from the PulpFest home page. Immediately below the gray box where you can subscribe to our email list (which is highly recommended), you’ll find a list of our favorite links. Below our FarmerCon link, you’ll see “Book a Room.” Click on “Hyatt Regency Columbus” and a new window will open on your monitor screen. This new window is a PulpFest specific window created by the Hyatt Regency where you’ll be able to make a reservation at the special convention rate of $109 per night.

You can also book a room at the Hyatt Regency Columbus by calling 1-888-421-1442 or 1-614-463-1234. Please be sure to mention PulpFest in order to get the special convention rate. See you in August!

The image above was created by illustrator Frank R. Paul for the front cover of the program book for the World Science Fiction Convention held in 1955 in Cleveland, Ohio.


Conan Turns Eighty!

(Jan. 15, 2012) The centennials of Tarzan and Mars are not the only events that will make 2012 significant for PulpFest attendees: This year we also celebrate the 80th birthday of Conan the Cimmerian, Robert E. Howard’s lusty barbarian who debuted in the December 1932 issue of the classic Weird Tales. Conan quickly became a reader favorite and appeared in many stories over the next four years.

Although Howard died a suicide in 1936, his most famous creation was later revived in hardcover collections published by Arkham House and Gnome Press. But it was the mid-Sixties Lancer paperbacks, with their striking Frank Frazetta covers, that enthralled baby-boom readers, led to Conan movies and comic books, and gave rise to a new generation of Howard scholars who have worked tirelessly to keep all their favorite author’s works in print.

PulpFest will celebrate the Cimmerian’s eightieth birthday and honor Howard’s career with two very special programs. First, Rusty Burke will moderate a panel of REH experts who will discuss Conan, Howard’s other characters, and the author’s influence on the sword-and-sorcery genre. Rusty needs no introduction to devotees of “Two-Gun Bob.” He is the editor of the highly acclaimed Howard reprint series published in the US by Del Rey Books, the president of the Robert E. Howard Foundation, and a long-time participant in REHupa (The Robert E. Howard United Press Association). We will provide the names of other panelists as soon as they are confirmed.

The second Conan-themed presentation will be made by another well-known Howard aficionado, Jim Keegan, who with his wife Ruth produces “The Adventures of Two-Gun Bob,” which appears in every issue of Conan, Kull, and Solomon Kane published by Dark Horse Comics. The Keegans have also illustrated several of the Del Rey volumes (including Crimson Shadows and Grim Land: The Best of Robert E. Howard, Volumes One & Two) and are the proprietors of Jim & Ruth’s Two-Gun Blog. Jim will offer a look at the Cimmerian as depicted by various illustrators over the last eight decades.

Edgar Rice Burroughs and Robert E. Howard remain two of the most avidly collected pulp fictioneers, and we’re certain that this year’s PulpFest programs will win new fans for each. And that’s just the beginning. We’re already brainstorming ideas for other panels and presentations, so you can expect the same diverse mix of programming for which our convention has become famous. Check back often for additional news!

Conan was not featured on the cover of the December 1932 Weird Tales. Instead, the front cover painting by J. Allen St. John illustrated Otis Adelbert Kline’s “Buccaneers of Venus.”


The Rusty Hevelin Service Award

(Jan. 18, 2012) Each year, PulpFest recognizes the efforts and ongoing involvement of one person in the improvement, elevation, and continuance of keeping the pulps alive and well for this generation and future generations. In the past, this person, elected by his or her peers, was presented with a framed art print known as The Munsey Award (pictured at left).

As a result of the recent death of one of the organizers and stalwarts of the hobby, PulpFest has decided that henceforth the Munsey will formally be called the Rusty Hevelin Service Award. Hopefully, this will be accepted as a tribute to a man who was influential in making PulpFest and its predecessors so successful.

At the same time, we cannot forgot the historical importance of Frank A. Munsey, the man who published the first pulp magazine,The Argosy, in 1896. Therefore, while paying tribute to Rusty Hevelin, our award will continue to be nicknamed The Munsey, along the same lines as The Oscar.

The first annual Rusty Hevelin Service Award will be presented at PulpFest 2012. Nominations for the award are now being accepted. All members of the pulp community, whether they plan to attend PulpFest 2012 or not, are welcome to nominate a deserving person for this year’s award.

If you have someone in mind that you feel worthy to receive this year’s Munsey, please let us know. All members of the pulp community, excepting past winners of the Munsey or Lamont awards, are eligible for this prestigious prize. Please send the person’s name and a brief paragraph describing why you feel that person should be honored to Mike Chomko, 2217 W. Fairview Street, Allentown, PA 18104-6542 or to mike@pulpfest.com. The deadline for nominations is April 30, 2012. The recipient of the Rusty Hevelin Service Award will be selected by a panel of judges consisting of recognized experts in the field of pulp literature. The award will be presented on Saturday evening, August 11th, during the convention’s evening programming.


Mike Resnick Coming to PulpFest

(Jan. 22, 2012) PulpFest 2012 is very pleased to welcome award-winning science-fiction writer Mike Resnick as its guest of honor. Winner of five Hugo Awards and a Nebula Award, Mike first became involved in science fiction through the work of Edgar Rice Burroughs. With this year being the hundredth anniversary of the start of Burroughs’ writing career, it is fitting that our guest of honor is an author who, early in his career, “wanted nothing more than to write books in the style of Edgar Rice Burroughs.”

Mike’s first published work of science fiction, The Forgotten Sea of Mars, was a sequel to Burroughs’ Llana of Gathol. After its release in 1965, Resnick transformed and expanded the story into The Goddess of Ganymede and its sequel Pursuit on Ganymede. Around the same time, Mike was also an associate editor for Camille Cazedessus’ ERB-dom.

Although Mike turned away from the influence of Edgar Rice Burroughs soon after publishing his first three science-fiction novels, he still appreciates the author’s creations. In recent years, he has written introductions to The Tarzan Twins for Wildside Press and for The Land That Time Forgot and Philip Jose Farmer’s Tarzan Alive, both published by Bison Books. Currently, Mike is editing, with Bob Garcia, The Worlds of Edgar Rice Burroughs, an anthology of mostly original stories inspired by Burroughs and his creations. It will be published by Baen Books and will feature stories by Kevin J. Anderson, Joe Lansdale, Michael Moorcock, and others, as well as the first appearance of Resnick’s “The Forgotten Sea of Mars” in nearly fifty years.

For further information about our special guest, please turn to our guest of honor page under “Programming.”


Kalb Designs Another Winner

(Jan. 22, 2012) Designer and cartoonist Chris Kalb, known in pulp circles for his hero pulp websites, like The 86th Floor and The Spider Returns, and for his work for Age of Aces Books, has created another superb post card for this year’s PulpFest. These cards will be distributed through collectibles, book, and antique paper shows, a wide array of science fiction, comic book, gaming, mystery, and film conventions, and bookstores and comic shops. Keep an eye out for these colorful promotion items. Chris’ previous cards have become sought-after collector’s items.


PulpFest 2012 Accepting Registrations

(Jan. 29, 2012) PulpFest 2012 is now accepting registrations for our August convention. From our Registration page, you’ll be able to download our member and dealer registration forms. You can pay for memberships and dealer tables through our Paypal Order page. You’ll also be able to book a room at the Hyatt Regency Columbus at the convention rate of $109 plus tax via our special link to the hotel.

On our Programming page you’ll find our tentative schedule for the 2012 convention when we’ll be celebrating the centennial of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Mars and the 80th anniversary of Robert E. Howard’s Conan of Cimmeria. You can read more about MIke Resnick, our award-winning guest of honor by turning to the GOH–Mike Resnick page. If you’d like to relive the first three PulpFests, you’ll find reviews, our blogs from previous years, and more. We even have a primer on pulp history!

All this can be found by clicking the buttons along the left side of our home page. And don’t forget, now’s the time to make your nominations for the 2012 Rusty Hevelin Service Award. Please send the name of the person that you’d like to nominate and a short paragraph describing your reasons for your nomination to Mike Chomko, 2217 W. Fairview St., Allentown, PA  18104-6542 or to mike@pulpfest.com. The deadline for nominations is April 30, 2012.

We look forward to seeing you over the weekend of August 9-12.

P. J. Monahan painted the evocative cover to the Feb. 22, 1922 issue of Argosy All-Story Weekly, illustrating “The Chessman of Mars,” the fifth novel in Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Barsoom series.


John Carter

(March 4, 2012) One hundred years ago in March of 1912, readers of Munsey’s The All-Story, were nearing the halfway point of a six-part serial entitled “Under the Moons of Mars,” a story credited to Norman Bean. The work of a new fiction writer, Edgar Rice Burroughs, the novel tells the tale of Captain Jack Carter of Virginia, and of his adventures on the planet Mars.

First advertised in the January 1912 issue of The All-Story as “a surprisingly vivid Interplanetary romance,” the original pulp version of Burroughs’ novel began with an editor’s note:

At the time of his demise, John Carter was a man of uncertain age and vast experience, honorable and abounding with true fellowship. He stood a good two inches over six feet, was broad of shoulder and narrow of hip, with the carriage of the trained fighting man. His features were regular and clear-cut, his eyes steel gray, reflecting a strong and loyal character. He was a Southerner of the highest type. He had enlisted at the outbreak of the War, fought through the four years and had been honorably discharged. Then for more than a decade he was gone from the sight of his fellows. When he returned he had changed, there was a kind of wistful longing and hopeless misery in his eyes, and he would sit for hours at night, staring up into the starlit heavens.

Thus was the reader of a century ago drawn into the mystery of Captain Jack. In the pages that followed that brief editor’s note and for the five issues thereafter, the readers of The All-Story were told a most wondrous tale, of four-armed Tharks and red-skinned Heliumites, of fantastic airships and many-legged thoats, of  vast dead seas and long-abandoned cities, and of a lost princess and the man from another world who won her heart, all created by a gifted storyteller named Edgar Rice Burroughs.

Now, one-hundred years later, a new audience will be introduced to Captain Jack. In less than a week’s time, Disney’s John Carter will debut in theaters everywhere and another generation will thrill to Burroughs’ imaginings. PulpFest 2012 will be honoring the wonderful creations of Edgar Rice Burroughs beginning on August 9th at the Hyatt Regency in downtown Columbus, Ohio. Register now for the summer’s great pulp con!

The cover art above is by Clinton Pettee for the April 1912 issue of The All-Story. The scan is from Galactic Central.


Advertise in The Pulpster

(March 11, 2012) After 21 years, Pulpster editor Tony Davis plans to call it quits. He and designer Bill Lampkin will be pulling out all of the stops to make The Pulpster #21 one of the most memorable issues of their award winning magazine. All members of PulpFest 2012 will receive a complimentary copy of The Pulpster.

If you’d like to place an advertisement in this year’s Pulpster, there’s still time to do so. However, the May 31st deadline for reserving advertising space is fast approaching. Our rates are very reasonable: color back cover–$160; inside color covers–$125; inside black and white covers or full page–$65; half-page–$40; quarter page–$25. Print specifications, payment information, and more can be found on the Program Book page of our website. To inquire about space availability, please write to Jack Cullers at jack@pulpfest.com. The Pulpster has a circulation of 450-500 copies. All advertising is sold on a first come, first served basis, with payment expected immediately after reserving a space.

Another way to advertise at PulpFest is to donate material for our giveaway table. Over the years, The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, Book Source Magazine, Girasol Collectables, Engle Publishing, and other organizations have donated a variety of publications that were given away free to PulpFest attendees. Your donation will be acknowledged on our website and at the convention. If you’d like to offer something for our giveaway table, please contact Barry Traylor at barry@pulpfest.com.


Pulp Con Time

(April 7, 2012) In two weeks, the pulp con season begins with the second edition of Pulp Ark. Running April 20th through the 22nd, it will be held in Batesville, Arkansas, nestled in the beautiful Ozark Mountains. Not only is Pulp Ark the only southern-based pulp convention, it is also the leading convention for the “new pulp” genre, a type of fiction grounded in the pulps of yore. A showing of Tarzan, Lord of the Louisiana Jungle, a documentary on the making of the 1918 silent film Tarzan of the Apes, will be part of the festivities as well as the presentation of the 2012 Pulp Ark Awards. Congratulations to all of the winners. Click on the Pulp Ark logo above to learn more details about this new pulp con.

One week later, the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention will take place in the Chicago suburb of Lombard, IL. Celebrating Edgar Rice Burroughs and the 100th anniversary of Tarzan of the Apes, the convention will run from April 27th through the 29th and be held at the Westin Lombard Yorktown Center. The convention will host an extensive film program, including an exclusive theater showing of the recent Disney film, John Carter. Another highlight of the con will be the pulp-related art show, sponsored by Dan Zimmer’s Illustration Magazine. Along with PulpFest, the Windy is a must for the pulp fan. Click on the logo above for additional information about this superb pulp convention.

North of the border and one week after Windy City, Toronto will host the 16th annual Fantastic Pulps Show & Sale. A one-day event, this small but pulp specific show will take place on Saturday, May 5th at the Lillian H. Smith branch of the Toronto Public Library, 239 College Street, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. You can learn more by writing to Girasol Collectables, 3501 Glen Erin Drive, Suite 1409, Mississauga, ON, Canada L5L 2E9 or by emailing info@girasolcollectables.com.

Cinevent 44 will take place May 25th – 28th at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Conference Center, the former home of PulpFest. In addition to 170 tables of movie-related collectibles such as posters, lobby cards, stills, pressbooks, DVDs, and 16 mm films, Cinevent features an extensive schedule of classic sound and silent films and one of the country’s largest live auctions of vintage posters. Click on the logo below for a link to the convention’s website.

Sponsored by the Robert E. Howard Foundation with help from the members of REHupa, the Robert E. Howard United Press Association, and Project Pride, the annual Robert E. Howard Days will be held June 8th-9th in Cross Plains, TX. The ultimate gathering for fans of Howard, it will feature tours, panels, auctions, films, speeches, readings, rare collectibles, and great Howardian fellowship. Like PulpFest 2012, this year’s Howard Days will celebrate Conan’s eightieth birthday. Essayist Charles Hoffmann will be the guest of honor. Write to Bill Cavalier at 2cavaliers@sbcglobal.net with your questions or comments.

One of the first pulp and paperback shows ever established, the 41st Classicon will take place on Saturday, June 9th in Lansing, MI. It will feature 35 tables and thousands of collectible pulp magazines, digests, and paperbacks available for sale or trade as well as pin-ups, original artwork, and other pop culture material.

As always, these events are just a prelude to PulpFest 2012, the summertime destination for fans and collectors of vintage popular fiction and related materials. Why not register today?


At the Newsstand with Roberts & Hulse

(May 6, 2012) Much of our 2012 programming revolves around birthdays. Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Tarzan and John Carter both turn 100 this year, while Robert E. Howard’s Conan reaches eighty. We’re celebrating these occasions with presentations devoted to these characters and their creators. But 2012 marks another important anniversary in pulp history.

This summer’s PulpFest will begin almost 75 years to the day after the September 1937 Astounding Stories hit newsstands across the nation. That issue was the first to benefit from the input of John W. Campbell, a pioneering science-fiction writer hired to assist F. Orlin Tremaine, who had been at the magazine’s helm since Street & Smith purchased it from publisher William Clayton in 1933. With Tremaine’s guidance, Astounding had become the preeminent SF pulp, but its best days were yet to come. Just a few months after joining the magazine’s staff, Campbell assumed full editorial control of the monthly and promptly instituted policies that ushered in what later became known as the Golden Age of Science Fiction.

Within a few short years, John Campbell had assembled a stable of writers that included talented newcomers and reliable mainstays alike. His roster of contributors was unparalleled by any other magazine in the field, and the first six years of his tenure as editor saw the publication of such classic science-fiction stories as “Slan,” “Who Goes There?”, “Final Blackout,” “Sixth Column,” “Methuselah’s Children,” “Beyond This Horizon,” “Gather, Darkness!”, three of E. E. Smith’s “Lensman” novels and the early installments of Isaac Asimov’s “Foundation” series.

PulpFest 2012 will honor this remarkably fecund period in Astounding‘s long history with a unique presentation. Rather than entrust it to a single speaker or a panel of enthusiasts, our salute to Campbell and the magazine’s Golden Age will be conducted by Garyn G. Roberts, PhD., and Blood ‘n’ Thunder editor Ed Hulse. Both are well qualified to discuss Campbell’s influence and Astounding‘s peak years: Roberts is a popular culture professor and the editor of The Prentice Hall Anthology of Science Fiction and Fantasy (2000), while Hulse has written extensively about Astounding‘s Golden Age, most recently in The Blood ‘n’ Thunder Guide to Collecting Pulps (2007).

Roberts and Hulse will take a Siskel-and-Ebert approach to their conversation, citing their favorite Astounding authors and stories while debating the merits of individual yarns that appeared in the magazine during the years under review. Their discussion will be accompanied by a slideshow of Astounding covers from September 1937 to November 1943. We’re not aware of any pulp-convention presentation that has employed this format, and we think it’ll be something special.

Join PulpFest on Thursday, August 9th for At the Newsstand with Hulse and Roberts.

The cover art above is by Wesso for the September 1937 issue of  Astounding Stories.


Time’s Running Out to Advertise

in The Pulpster!

(May 21, 2012) PulpFest’s deadline for advertising in The Pulpster, June 15th, is fast approaching. Tony Davis and Bill Lampkin are already hard at work to make this year’s issue the best ever. We’ve promised to deliver all ads to them by mid-June to provide them with plenty of time to polish the eye-catching design that has distinguished the long-running ‘zine since PulpFest took it over in 2009.

When you advertise in The Pulpster, you aren’t only reaching the hundreds of people who attend our convention. Each yearly issue of The Pulpster has an afterlife as a stand-alone magazine, selling to interested buyers as long as supplies last.

Although the cover positions have long been spoken for, we can still accommodate interior B&W ads in all configurations–but only for the next two weeks. So if you’re among those who have been thinking about advertising but have not yet pulled the trigger, now’s the time! You’ll find prices and guidelines on the Program Book page of our website or by writing to ed@pulpfest.com.


Mark Schultz Attending PulpFest 2012

(June 3, 2012) PulpFest is very pleased to announce that author and illustrator Mark Schultz, best known for his award-winning comics series Xenozoic Tales, will be appearing at the “Summer’s Great Pulp Con” in August. Mark, along with his friends Jim and Ruth Keegan, will be joining PulpFest 2012 to help celebrate the 80th anniversary of Robert E. Howard’s Conan.

The winner of five Harvey Awards, two Eisners, an Inkpot, a Spectrum Award, and three Haxturs for comics published in Spain, Mark originally became interested in the work of Robert E. Howard through the Lancer paperbacks of the late sixties. His professional involvement with Howard’s fiction began when Wandering Star asked if he would be interested in illustrating a Howard book. The result, Conan of Cimmeria, Vol. One (1932-1933), was published in the United Kingdom in 2003. The first US edition, also illustrated by Schultz, was published by Del Rey later the same year. Mark’s cover painting for the Del Rey edition appears above.

Mark will be joining the Keegans in PulpFest‘s dealers’ room where they will have some of their Howard-related work on display. He will also be joining Jim and Ruth for an historical look at The Illustrated Conan on Saturday, August 11th. Mark will discuss the actual mechanics of creating illustrations for stories vs. covers vs. comics and how intended use effects content and approach.

Register now for PulpFest 2012 for your chance to meet three of the best contemporary illustrators of Robert E. Howard’s Conan. And for more information on Mark Schultz, please visit his Guest page under the Programming link of our home page.

The artwork above is Mark Schultz’s cover art for The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian, published by Del Rey in 2003.


Barsoom & Beyond: Mars in the Pulps

(June 10, 2012) Mars, the Red Planet. Edgar Rice Burroughs called it Barsoom and this year marks the 100th anniversary of his “Under the Moons of Mars,” originally serialized in Munsey’s The All-Story. But ERB was one of many authors to write about Mars for the pulps. On Friday, August 10th, PulpFest‘s Ed Hulse will take a look at several visions of Mars as he moderates a panel called “Barsoom & Beyond: Mars in the Pulps.”

Joining Ed will be four expert panelists. Henry G. Franke, III, the editor of The Burroughs Bulletin and treasurer of the Burroughs Bibliophiles, will discuss the Martian novels of Edgar Rice Burroughs, including such classics as The Gods of Mars and The Warlord of Mars. Stephen Haffner, publisher of Haffner Press, will be on board for a look at Leigh Brackett’s Mars stories–“Martian Quest,” “Sea-Kings of Mars,” “Queen of the Martian Catacombs,” and other planetary romances. Pulp scholar Will Murray, author of “The All-New Wild Adventures of Doc Savage,” will examine The Swordsman of Mars and The Outlaws of Mars, two novels written by Otis Adelbert Kline and originally serialized by Argosy in the early thirties. Finally, Garyn G. Roberts, editor of The Prentice Hall Anthology of Science Fiction and Fantasy, is a scholar of the works of the late Ray Bradbury, whose Martian Chronicles began with “The Million Year Picnic” in the Summer 1946 issue of Planet Stories. Garyn was also Ray Bradbury’s friend for thirty years.

In addition to helping to organize PulpFest, panel moderator Ed Hulse is the editor of Blood ‘n’ Thunder, a journal for aficionados of adventure, mystery, and melodrama from the early 20th century, and the publisher of Murania Press books.

The cover art above is by Earle K. Bergey for the Fall 1944 issue of Startling Stories. The scan is from io9 Cover Art.


80 Years of Conan the Cimmerian

(June 14, 2012) Although tales of swordsmen and sorcerers had certainly preceded them, it would be the stories of Robert E. Howard’s Conan of Cimmeria that would popularize the genre, paving the way for characters such as C. L. Moore’s Jirel of Joiry, Henry Kuttner’s Elak of Atlantis, Fritz Leiber’s Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser, Michael Moorcock’s Elric of Melniboné, Karl Edward Wagner’s Kane, and Glen Cook’s Black Company.

Debuting in the December 1932 issue of Weird Tales in “The Phoenix on the Sword,” Conan seemed to spring full-bodied to the mind of Robert E. Howard:

The man Conan seemed suddenly to grow up in my mind without much labor on my part and immediately a stream of stories flowed…almost without effort….I did not seem to be creating, but rather relating events that had occurred. Episode crowded on episode so fast that I could scarcely keep up with them. For weeks I did nothing but write of the adventures of Conan. The character took complete possession of my mind and crowded out everything else in the way of story-writing.

Following hot on the heels of that first story, “The Scarlet Citadel” would appear in the January 1933 issue of “The Unique Magazine.” The classic “The Tower of the Elephant” would run two months later in the March number. Fourteen more tales of the Cimmerian would appear in Weird Tales, including gems such as “Rogues in the House,” “Queen of the Black Coast,” “Beyond the Black River,” and “Red Nails,” which closed out the series in 1936.

On Saturday, August 11th, PulpFest will celebrate the eightieth birthday of Conan and the sword and sorcery genre with a panel presentation hosted by Rusty Burke, the editor of the highly acclaimed Howard reprint series published by Del Rey Books, the president of the Robert E. Howard Foundation, and a member of REHupa (The Robert E. Howard United Press Association).

Joining Rusty for Robert E. Howard’s Conan and the Birth of Sword and Sorcery will be Don Herron, editor of The Dark Barbarian (Greenwood Press, 1984), the first book to treat Howard’s work seriously, and its sequel The Barbaric Triumph (Wildside Press, 2004). For a quarter century, Don has been leading San Francisco’s Dashiell Hammett Tour, the longest-running literary tour in the United States. Also on board will be Brian Leno, an award-winning Howard scholar whose essays have appeared in The Cimmerian, REH: Two-Gun Raconteur, and Up and Down These Mean Streets, and John D. Squires, an Ohio bookseller whose knowledge of fantastic fiction is broad and deep. John is an expert on the work of M. P. Shiel and publisher of JDS Books and The Vainglory Press.

The cover art above is by Margaret Brundage for the August 1934 issue of Weird Tales, illustrating Robert E. Howard’s “The Devil in Iron.” The scan was provided by Girasol Collectables.


Resnick Speaks!

(June 18, 2012) On Friday, August 10th, PulpFest guest of honor Mike Resnick will talk about his many years as an author and editor. With 2012 being the hundredth anniversary of the start of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ writing career, it is fitting that our guest of honor is an author who, early in his career, “wanted nothing more than to write books in the style of Edgar Rice Burroughs” (ERBmania!).

Mike’s first three published works of science fiction, including The Forgotten Sea of Mars (1965), were pastiches of Burroughs’ Mars novels. But not wanting to be remembered for merely imitating works he once admired, Resnick stopped writing science fiction and worked to hone his writing skills. For a dozen years, he wrote pseudonymous adult fiction and Gothic romances, selling hundreds of novels and short stories and several thousand articles. He also edited tabloid newspapers and men’s magazines, all the while intending to become a science-fiction professional.

In the early eighties, Resnick returned to the science fiction field with The Soul Eater, a reworking of Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick. His breakthrough novel was the international bestseller Santiago, published by Tor in 1986. Mike has since won five Hugo Awards, a Nebula Award, and received the Skylark Award for Lifetime Achievement in Science Fiction. A professional science-fiction writer for over thirty years, the former associate editor of Camille Cazedessus’ ERB-dom remains a science fiction fan and still contributes articles to fanzines and convention program books.

Mike will talk about his years as a fan of Edgar Rice Burroughs, including his association with ERB-dom and his early Burroughs pastiches. He’ll also explore his years as a pseudonymous author, putting food on the table while learning to become his own writer. Additionally, he will discuss his long involvement in the science-fiction universe both as a fan and as a professional, and his plans for The Worlds of Edgar Rice Burroughs, a forthcoming anthology he is editing with Bob Garcia for Baen Books.

Please join PulpFest 2012 for a delightful hour with one of science fiction’s leading raconteurs.

Neal MacDonald, Jr. contributed the artwork above for the 1965 edition of The Forgotten Sea of Mars, published by Camille Cazedessus in ERB-dom #12.


FarmerCon Returns to PulpFest

(June 22, 2012) PulpFest is very happy to report that FarmerCon VII will again be held at our convention. An annual gathering for fans of Grand Master of Science Fiction Philip José Farmer, FarmerConreturns for the second straight year to Columbus, Ohio to commemorate the celebrated author, his fiction, and his pulp roots.

FarmerCon began in Peoria, Illinois, the author’s home town, soon after Phil had won the Grand Master award in 2001. To honor the event, the city’s public library staged a reception for the author. Farmer enthusiast Michael Croteau spread the word about the event through his website, The Official Philip José Farmer Home Page, resulting in fans coming to Peoria from across the country. Not long thereafter, FarmerCon was born.

Originally a gathering of Farmer fans figuratively, and literally, right outside Phil’s back door, FarmerCon offered presentations, dinners, and even picnics at the author’s house. After the passing of Phil and Bette Farmer in 2009, it was decided to take FarmerCon on the road to broaden its horizons. By holding FarmerCon alongside events like PulpFest, Farmer fans get a variety of programming and a room full of pulp and book dealers to enjoy.

As it did in 2011, FarmerCon will provide some of PulpFest‘s evening programming. At 7:10 PM on Friday, August 10th, Paul Spiteri, editor of Pearls from Peoria, will moderate a panel featuring authors Win Scott Eckert and Christopher Paul Carey. Entitled Lord Tyger, Time’s Last Gift, and the Gods of Opar, the presentation will examine several Farmer novels related to Edgar Rice Burrough’s Tarzan and the works of Jules Verne.

Later the same evening, FarmerCon will sponsor a showing of the film, I, Tarzan. Set in an English castle, this French documentary features George McWhorter, editor emeritus of The Burroughs Bulletin, Philip José Farmer, and popular culture expert Francis Lacassin in a discussion about Edgar Rice Burroughs’ most famous creation, Tarzan. An exploration of Burroughs’ rich and diver­si­fied char­ac­ter, I, Tarzan is full of fun, fancy and mystery.

The artwork above is by Gray Morrow for the 1970 Ace Double edition of Lord of the Trees and The Mad Goblin.


PulpFest to Auction Tonik Collection

(June 25, 2012) Albert Tonik, long-time fan, scholar and collector of pulp magazines and related pop-culture artifacts, has decided to sell his holdings and has chosen PulpFest as the most appropriate venue to do so. Therefore, the vast majority of lots offered at this year’s Saturday-night auction will be choice items from Al’s huge collection of hardcovers, paperbacks, pulps, dime novels, comic books, fanzines, and especially reference books that are both scarce and desirable.

One of the last remaining PulpFest members who actually bought pulps off the newsstands, Al discovered pulp fandom several decades ago and began collecting anew the rough-paper magazines he enjoyed so much as a youth. But his activity didn’t stop there: Al was determined to research the lives and careers of pulp writers, artists, editors, and publishers. He assiduously tracked down and made contact with surviving pulp-industry veterans, corresponding with many and meeting some face to face. More than a few considered him a friend and granted him unlimited access to their files for his research.

Over a period of several decades, Al researched aspects of pulp history previously covered sketchily, if at all. He unearthed long-buried records—letters, ledgers, invoices, inter-office memos—that enabled him to identify the works of pulp writers who had worked under pseudonyms, to determine how much they had been paid for their labors, where and when their stories had been reprinted (if at all), and so on. In the course of this research, which he came to enjoy as much if not more than reading the actual pulps themselves, Al amassed a huge library of reference works that facilitated cross-referencing and added to the wealth of knowledge he uncovered through his friendships with veteran pulpsters.

Al loved sharing his knowledge. As an early member of PEAPS (the Pulp Era Amateur Press Society), he became well known for his contributions entitled “Ramblings of a Perambulating Pulp Fan.” He transcribed interviews, compiled exhaustive bibliographies, and wrote fact-filled articles for such popular fanzines as Echoes, Pulp Vault, The Pulp Collector, Purple Prose, and Blood ‘n’ Thunder. Al never wrote a pulp-history book himself, but he supplied hard-to-find information to more than a dozen tomes penned by his friends and fellow pulp fans.

Although Al remains in relatively good physical condition for his 87 years of age, he has decided it’s time to dispose of the collection he has spent so long compiling. He wants this treasure trove of material to be disseminated among his fellow hobbyists and to that end has asked PulpFest to auction the material.

Among the many treasures that will be offered during our August 11th auction will be Leonard A. Robbins’ multi-volume The Pulp Magazine Index, Marshall B. Tymn’s and Mike Ashley’s Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Weird Fiction Magazines, Sam Moskowitz’s Under the Moons of Mars signed by the author, Michael L. Cook’s Mystery, Detective, and Espionage Magazines, Quentin Reynolds’ The Fiction Factory, a complete run of the quarterly PEAPS mailings, a bound volume of Lynn Hickman’s The Pulp Era, runs of Echoes, The Pulp Collector, Pulp Vault, Rocket’s Blast Comic Collector, and other fanzines, a few issues of Standard’s Thrilling Comics and Street & Smith’s Shadow Comics, several Jungle Stories and various Western pulps, many issues of The Pulp Review/High Adventure, a large number of Jim Hanos’ pulp reprints, film and television scripts, superhero paperbacks, and much more.

Over the years Al has been one of the hobby’s most generous participants. He has given us a great deal—including his friendship—and we’re pleased to have a role in giving something back in addition to finding good homes for the books and magazines he has treasured for so many years.

More information will be supplied after we’ve been able to catalog Al’s voluminous holdings. Check back often, if you’re not doing so already. This auction is yet another reason to be excited about PulpFest 2012, which is almost certain to be the best yet!


James Allen St. John

(June 28, 2012) J. Allen St. John, the most famous illustrator of the works Edgar Rice Burroughs, will be the subject of a talk by David Saunders, the leading expert on pulp art and author of numerous articles on pulp artists for Illustration Magazine. He has also written book-length studies of his father, illustrator Norman Saunders, and H. J. Ward, the Spicy pulp cover artist.

St. John was born in 1872 and was inspired at an early age to study art. His first published works appeared in The New York Herald in 1898. Not long after settling in Chicago in 1912, he began to work as a commercial artist for a number of Midwest publishers of books, newspapers and magazines. One of these was A. C. McClurg, the publisher of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ novels in book form. In 1915, he illustrated The Return of Tarzan, the first of many ERB novels for which the artist would become renowned.

On Friday, August 10th, David Saunders will present many glorious examples of St. John’s finest works as well as behind-the-scene photos of  the artist, his studio, his art school, and his private club, as well as rare sketches of familiar masterpieces to better appreciate his working methods.

In addition to his work in pulp art history, David is an accomplished artist whose works are in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, and many other public venues. He also created the Munsey, more formally known as The Rusty Hevelin Service Award, presented annually at PulpFest.

The J. Allen St. John painting above was commissioned by Stanleigh Vinson in 1954 and inspired by the book jacket for Tarzan and the Golden Lion, published by A. C. McClurg.


Buy Two, Get One Free!

(July 3, 2012) With PulpFest fast approaching, we’ve been assembling the vast jigsaw puzzle that is the dealers’ room, making sure our vendors are placed in the specific locations they asked for–against the walls, in the “island,” near electrical outlets, and so on. We now find ourselves in the desirable position of having available more space than we originally thought.

The exhibit area assigned to us by the Hyatt Regency for our dealers is 25 percent larger and more conveniently configured than the ballroom we used at the Ramada Plaza. When scouting the new hotel it was immediately apparent to us that PulpFest hucksters would have larger and more comfortable quarters. The only downside we could think of before electing to move to our new location was that the Hyatt supplies six-foot tables rather than the eight-foot tables we had been getting from the Ramada

But in laying out the room it has become apparent that we can squeeze more tables into our allotted space than previously estimated. Therefore, in the interest of restoring to our dealers the square footage they have been accustomed to, we are delighted to announce that we can now provide a third table free of charge to any vendor who has already booked, or still intends to book, two tables at PulpFest. We are, however, limiting this offer to dealers who will staying at the Hyatt.

If you have already reserved two tables and would like a third free, just e-mail Jack Cullers and let him know. Write to jack@pulpfest.com. If you have not reserved tables yet, well, we recommend you do so post haste, because the free upgrades from two tables to three will probably eat up that extra space in fairly short order. Remember, the three-for-two offer extends only to PulpFest vendors who are staying at the Hyatt during the con. Please visit our registration page for further instructions.

At this point we would also urge you to take full advantage of our generous load-in and set-up period. After all, this is our first year in a new location, and while uploading and transporting your goods should be much easier–there’s a side entrance to the hotel for loading and we have been granted exclusive use of a freight elevator–there is bound to be a certain amount of disorientation as folks negotiate their way around the Hyatt for the first time. We feel very strongly that attendees have every right to expect a fully-set-up hucksters room as soon as the convention opens on Friday, which is why PulpFest has always offered a lengthy load-in period on Thursday from 4  – 11 PM. We welcome your cooperation in this aspect of the show.

The PulpFest committee is very excited about our first show in this upscale new venue. Our programming is set and, as is always the case this time of year, we’re fielding lots of questions from eager registrants, some of them attending PulpFest for the first time.  It’s going to be a great weekend!

E. Franklin Wittmack painted the cover above for the August 1942 issue of Popular Publications’ Adventure.


PulpFest Premier

(July 9, 2012) Ron Fortier and Rob Davis of Airship 27 Productions are thrilled to announce that their newest pulp novel, Jim Beard’s Captain ActionRiddle of the Glowing Men, will make its official debut at this year’s PulpFestin Columbus, Ohio.

Owned and managed by Captain Action Enterprises, Inc, LLC, Captain Action began life in the 1960s as an extremely popular toy action figure. Created by Stan Weston, the toy’s uniqueness was in the fact that it came with various costumes and could become Batman, the Green Hornet, Flash Gordon, the Lone Ranger, or many other heroes. Captain Action  went on to garner its own comic book, published by various companies. Dynamite Comics is the latest.

Captain ActionRiddle of the Glowing Men is the character’s first prose novel and the first licensed property to come from Airship 27 Productions, a leading publisher in the New Pulp movement.

A limited number of this highly collectible first edition will be on sale at PulpFest. From 11 to 11:30 AM on Saturday, August 11th, Jim Beard will be at the Airship 27 table autographing copies of his new book. All those who purchase a copy at PulpFest will be entered into a raffle to win one of two posters of the book’s stunning cover painting (pictured above) by artist Nick Runge. Captain ActionRiddle of the Glowing Men will retail for $14.99 and will be available from Amazon, IndyPlanet, and as a PDF download at Airship27Hangar.com.


Two-Gun Jim & Ruth

(July 10, 2012) PulpFest is very pleased to announce that illustrators Jim & Ruth Keegan, best known for their comic strip series The Adventures of Two-Gun Bob, published by Dark Horse Comics, will be appearing at the “Summer’s Great Pulp Con” in August. Jim & Ruth, along with their friend Mark Schultz, will be helping PulpFest 2012 to celebrate the 80th anniversary of Robert E. Howard’s Conan of Cimmeria.

The Keegans began their celebrated biographical take on Howard’s life in 1997 when they joined REHupa, the Robert E. Howard United Press Association. This work brought them to the attention of several publishers that were reissuing the work of the popular author–Wandering Star, Del Rey, and, most recently, the Robert E. Howard Foundation. The Keegans’ cover painting for the Foundation’s Tales of Weird Menace appears above.

Jim & Ruth will be joining Mark Schultz in PulpFest’s dealers’ room where they will have some of their Howard-related work on display. On Saturday evening, August 11th, the three artists will discuss the artistic challenges of illustrating Howard’s work and will present an historical overview of eight decades of Conan art.

Register now for PulpFest 2012 for a chance to meet three of the best contemporary illustrators of Robert E. Howard’s Conan. For more information on Jim & Ruth Keegan (and Mark Schultz), please visit their Guests page under the Programming link of our home page.


There’s Still Time to Make Your Hotel

Reservation–But Not Much

(July 12, 2012) If you have not yet booked your room at the Hyatt Regency for this summer’s PulpFest, best do it soon. With the convention less than a month away, rooms are going fast. There’s no telling when they will all be gone.

The Hyatt has already filled the block of rooms initially set aside for us. We’ve been told that the hotel has “shifted some inventory” (i.e., freed up rooms earmarked for some other purpose) to ensure that PulpFest attendees are able to obtain accommodations at the convention rate. We understand that a few attendees called in their reservations only to be told there was no more room at the inn, as the saying goes. Happily, this is not the case. So now’s the time to place your reservation and snag one of the remaining beds.

You can find the hotel’s phone numbers on our home page under “Book a Room at the Hyatt Regency Columbus.” You can also book online by clicking on our link to the hotel. Now that everything is coming together, we can guarantee you won’t want to miss a minute of our 2012 gathering. The plethora of programming will mean several very late nights, so staying at the Hyatt is the one truly comfortable and convenient option.

We look forward to seeing all of you in August at PulpFest 2012!


The Envelope Please…

(July 14, 2012) The PulpFest Organizing Committee is pleased to announce that eighteen individuals were nominated by pulp fans for the 2012 Rusty Hevelin Service Award. The final nominee list has been pared down to the eleven individuals who received the most nominations.

The following nominees will be forwarded to a committee made up of all the living Lamont and Munsey Award winners who will select the person to receive the 2012 Munsey: Camille Cazedessus, Randy Cox, Jack Cullers, Ron Hanna, Steve Miller, Matt Moring, Curt Phillips, Laurie Powers, Garyn Roberts, George Vanderburgh, and Dan Zimmer. You’ll find further details about each nominee on the 2012 Award Nominees page of our website.

The recipient of the 2012 Munsey Award, a limited edition print (pictured above) designed by artist and pulp enthusiast David Saunders, will be announced on August 11th as part of the Saturday evening programming, open to all PulpFest 2012 registrants.


 PulpFest 2012 Dealers’ Page

(July 17, 2012) Every great pulp con is centered around its dealers’ room and this year, PulpFest will be spreading its wings. Our ballroom at the Hyatt Regency will add several thousand square feet to what the convention has been accustomed in the past. Expect the aisles to be wider and our sellers’ working area to be enlarged.

This year, PulpFest will be hosting about fifty sellers of pulp magazines and related materials, vintage paperbacks, digests, men’s adventure and true crime magazines, first edition hardcovers, series books, dime novels, original art, Big Little Books, Golden and Silver Age comic books, and other pop culture items. There will be over a hundred tables of material. You’ll find most of our sellers listed on the freshly revised Our Dealers page.

If you are interested in selling at this year’s PulpFest, given our expanded exhibition area, there is still “room at the inn.” Please visit our registration page for further instructions or write to Jack Cullers at jack@pulpfest.com. And don’t forget, for those dealers who plan to stay at the Hyatt Regency, PulpFest is offering one free table for every two reserved. Buy two, get one free!

We’ll see you in August at “Summer’s Great Pulp Con!!!”


Edgar Rice Burroughs, Movie Producer

(July 18, 2012) In 1934, after years of unsatisfactory dealings with Hollywood studios, Edgar Rice Burroughs entered into partnership with an old friend to produce motion pictures adapted from his novels and characters. Late that year, the ill-fated Burroughs-Tarzan Enterprises sent an expedition to Guatemala to film a 12-chapter serial titled The New Adventures of Tarzan. This complicated undertaking proved to be a bigger adventure than anything the serial’s scriptwriters had concocted. At various points during the production, cast and crew ran out of food, water, and money. Severe weather, logistical problems, and countless illnesses beset the entire unit.

Former Olympic athlete Herman Brix, making his starring debut as Tarzan, gave an exclusive interview to Blood ‘n’ Thunder editor Ed Hulse in 2002. The actor’s insights, combined with Ed’s own research, laid several myths to bed while adding important details to the extraordinarily rich history of ERB’s involvement with The New Adventures of Tarzan.

On Thursday, August 9th, at 11 PM, Ed will offer his insights into the history of ERB’s involvement with the 1934 film serial. Following the presentation, PulpFest will run the 72-minute cutdown of the chapter play, released simultaneously under the same title, The New Adventures of Tarzan, for theaters that did not book serials. A question and answer session will end the night.


Tarzan: A Hero for the Ages

(July 19, 2012) In October of 1912, not long after introducing John Carter of Mars, Edgar Rice Burroughs created Tarzan of the Apes,  the original twentieth century superhero. The singular creation of a then-fledgling author, Tarzan was a savage yet principled character that went on to strike a chord in generations of readers of every age, race, and nationality. He wasn’t an alien from another world, nor did he acquire any special powers or magic in his relentless fight to protect the African jungle and its inhabitants. But he was indeed a superhero.

Almost immediately after his introduction, Tarzan became a cultural phenomenon, spawning a trademark that spread throughout multiple media and business outlets:on film by 1918, as a comic by 1929, on radio by 1932, and as the century progressed, in television, gaming, merchandising, animation, the Internet, and soon after the century turned, a Broadway musical. Burroughs’ character somehow possesses a strange plasticity that allows him to be put into countless, even contradictory, kinds of stories. In short, way back in 1912 when he first came into the public eye through The All-Story, Tarzan became the first of a generation of multimedia superstars. One hundred years later, the name “Tarzan” still conjures instant recognition for millions of people across the globe.

On Thursday, August 9th, please join PulpFest in welcoming Henry G. Franke, III, editor of The Burroughs Bulletin and treasurer of The Burroughs Bibliophiles as he presents Tarzan: Hero for the Ages, a look at the multimedia character created by the wonderfully imaginative Edgar Rice Burroughs.

The illustration above is the poster for Broadway’s Tarzan: The Musical. Many thanks to Bill Hillman, the editor and webmaster for the official Edgar Rice Burroughs websites and webzines ERBzine, Tarzan.com, and Tarzan.org  for his help.


Parlez-vous français?

(July 21, 2012) If you are familiar with the lives of the yarn-spinners who labored for the pulp industry, you know that most of them were well-read. So it should come as no surprise that French literature may have influenced the creation of American pulp characters such as Doc Savage, The Spider, and even Stahlmaske, a major villain in Robert J. Hogan’s G-8 and His Battle Aces.

On Thursday evening, August 9th, Rick Lai, author of Chronology of Shadows: A Timeline of The Shadow’s Exploits, The Revised Complete Chronology of Bronze, Rick Lai’s Secret Histories: Criminal Masterminds, and Rick Lai’s Secret Histories: Daring Adventurers, will explore “The French Connection: How French Literature May Have Influenced American Pulp Heroes.”

In his presentation, Rick will look at such works as Alexandre Dumas’ The Count of Monte Cristo and The Man in the Iron Mask, Maurice Leblanc’s Arsène Lupin stories, Gaston Leroux’s The Phantom of the Opera, and the Fantômas stories of Marcel Allain and Pierre Souvestre and how they may have influenced such writers as Lester Dent, Walter Gibson, Johnston McCulley, Norvell Page, and Theodore Tinsley. Other works that Rick plans to explore include Honoré de Balzac’s Lost Illusions, Atlantida by Pierre Benoît, Arthur Bernède’s Judex, Paul Féval’s Le Bossu, and the controversial Eugene Sue novel The Wandering Jew.

You don’t really need to speak French to enjoy Rick’s presentation, but you certainly should come with an open mind. Join PulpFest at 8 PM, August 9th for the start of the convention’s exceptional programming schedule.

Rick Lai’s Secret Histories: Criminal Masterminds, pictured above, was published by Altus Press in 2009.


 Tarzan on Mars

(July 22, 2012) In late 1955, Ray Palmer initiated a campaign to get Stuart J. Byrne’s Tarzan on Mars approved for publication. Palmer issued his plea in the November 1955 issue of Other Worlds Science Stories. Although the Burroughs estate would never authorize the novel, Byrne’s manuscript would become legendary in science-fiction fandom, appearing in limited editions over the years.

Now PulpFest is not planning another edition of the Byrne yarn–after all, we’re already giving you The Pulpster–but we are planning a film program for the wee hours of Friday evening, August 10th. It will combine the two Burroughs series that we’re celebrating at this year’s convention–Tarzan and Mars.

Starting things off will be animator Bob Clampett’s footage for a cartoon adaptation of Burroughs’ Mars books. The creator of Beany and Cecil, Clampett approached Edgar Rice Burroughs in 1936 with an idea for a series of short animated films based on the author’s John Carter novels. Burroughs loved the idea and Clampett, with the help of Chuck Jones and Bobe Cannon, created six minutes of test footage for MGM. Unfortunately, the film studio nixed Clampett’s proposal and John Carter of Mars died aborning. Now we’ll see what we missed.

Following the Clampett footage, PulpFest will show Damon Keen’s short film, Last Flight. Filmed amidst the volcanic mountains of New Zealand, Keen’s movie concerns a lone astronaut on a perilous trek across the windswept deserts of Mars. Her oxygen supply running out, and her only company sporadic transmissions from Earth counting down the minutes to global war, the astronaut is forced to search for a way to come to terms with her circumstances–for herself and for the future of life in the universe.

Produced with the support of Creative New Zealand and the New Zealand Film Commission, Last Flight has appeared at a number of international film festivals. PulpFest 2012 will mark the United States premier of Damon Keen’s motion picture.

A French documentary about the origin and history of Tarzan will conclude the evening. I, Tarzan first appeared on French television in 1996. Set in an English castle, the film features George McWhorter, editor emeritus of The Burroughs Bulletin, science-fiction author Philip José Farmer, and popular culture expert Francis Lacassin in a discussion about Edgar Rice Burroughs’ most famous creation. An exploration of the fabulous jungle lord, I, Tarzan is full of fun, fancy and mystery.

Tarzan never quite made it to Mars, but PulpFest attendees will be able to sample some rare treats with these three fine films.

Appearing above is the November 1955 issue of Other Worlds Science Stories featuring “Tarzan Never Dies! A Challenge,” by Ray Palmer. The front cover art is by J. Allen St. John.


DeSoto Painting to be Sold at Auction

(July 24, 2012) About a month back, PulpFest 2012 was very proud to announce that we’d be selling longtime fan, scholar, and collector Al Tonik’s substantial collectionof pulps, paperbacks, hardcovers, dime novels, comic books, fanzines, and, particularly, reference books.

One of the last remaining PulpFest members who actually bought pulps off the newsstands, Albert spent several decades researching many aspects of pulp history. In the course of his work, he amassed a huge library of reference works and other material that he used to cross-reference the wealth of knowledge he uncovered through his friendships with veteran pulpsters.

Albert and his wife offered his collection to the PulpFest auction about five weeks back. As we began to catalog his vast holdings, it became increasingly apparent that we would have difficulty getting through everything in time for this year’s convention. Given Al Tonik’s standing in the pulp community, we wanted to do justice to his collection. With that in mind, PulpFest has decided to take a couple of years to work through the Tonik archives. Therefore, only a portion–still rather substantial–will be put up for bid at our 2012 Saturday Night Auction.

In order to thank the PulpFest membership for their patience, Al has decided to sell one of his most prized possessions–a recreation of the November 1934 front cover art to The Phantom Detective, painted by the original artist, Rafael DeSoto. You’ll find a picture of the painting at the bottom of this post.

Rafael DeSoto began to sell cover art to pulp magazines in 1932, contributing to a wide variety of magazines including Ace G-Man, All Detective, Argosy, Black Mask, Captain Zero, Champion Sports, Dime Mystery, Five-Novels Monthly, Popular Detective, The Spider, Terror Tales, Thrilling Detective, Walt Coburn’s Western Magazine, War Stories, Western Aces, and Wild West Weekly. He produced pulp covers into the 1950s.

DeSoto also contributed cover art and interior illustrations for slick magazines such as Colliers, Ladies Home Journal, Redbook, and The Saturday Evening Post, as well as to men’s adventure magazines such as Battle Cry, For Men Only, and True Adventure. He also produced many paperback book covers for Ace, Bantam, Dell, Lion, Signet, and Pocket Books beginning in the fifties.

According to David Saunders, Al Tonik personally commissioned DeSoto to paint a recreation of a classic pulp cover. “I had to think long and hard to pick the ONE image that I would most like to have!” Albert chose the November 1934 cover for The Phantom Detective. This would have been sometime around 1978 – 1981, when Rafael DeSoto was painting cover recreations for a number of pulp fans and art dealers.

Al Tonik’s DeSoto painting is a gem. It will go up for sale on Saturday, August 11th at PulpFest 2012. Register now for a chance to bid on this fabulous piece of pulp memorabilia.

The biographical information about Rafael DeSoto comes from David Saunder’s Field Guide to Wild American Pulp Artists. The illustration leading the post is the Adventure House replica of the November 1934 issue of The Phantom Detective.


Gunslinging Writers: The Fast-Typing

Working-Class Authors of the Pulps

(July 25, 2012) Like the gunslingers of the Wild West, pulp fiction authors survived by being fast. Beginning at 4:30 PM on Thursday, August 9th, pulp historian and publisherJohn Locke will discuss the complex working conditions faced by the army of writers who labored at breakneck speed to provide millions of words—all at 1- to 2-cents apiece—of popular fiction to the countless numbers of science-fiction, western, adventure, romance, hero, war, sports, detective, crime, and mystery fiction magazines of the early twentieth century. Mr. Locke will describe the era of the cheap fiction magazine and the pop-culture legacy of the pulps, with particular emphasis on how the constantly shifting economics of the pulps affected the work and output of its writers, editors, and publishers.

The professional writers’ magazines of the early twentieth century illustrate in tangible and personal ways the difficulties, attractions, and realities of what life was like as a cent-a-word, pulpwood “hack.” Using articles culled from these magazines, Mr. Locke will demonstrate how would-be pulpsters were advised on the best ways to plot and pace a high-seas adventure tale or science-fiction yarn. From the same sources, he’ll also  provide snapshots of the markets for cheap fiction of that time and the occasional first-hand account of the pulp author’s life.

Copies of Mr. Locke’s 2004 book, Pulp Fictioneers: Adventures in the Storytelling Business (Adventure House), will be available for purchase after the lecture.

This lecture is free and open to the public. It is co-sponsored by the Aldus Society and the Rare Books and Manuscripts Library of the Ohio State University Libraries, in conjunction with Pulpfest 2012. It will take place at the Thompson Library, 1858 Neil Avenue Mall, on the campus of Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio. For further details about John’s lecture, please email Eric Johnson, Curator of Early Books and Manuscripts for The Ohio State University Libraries.

In addition to Mr. Locke’s lecture, the Thompson Library will be hosting a small exhibit of Edgar Rice Burroughs and Robert E. Howard items culled from the university’s collections, including some typescripts of Howard’s poetry. It will be held in the Special Collections display area on the first floor of the library.


PulpFest Book Launch

(July 26, 2012) In the 1970s, Philip José Farmer wrote two novels of great adventure set in a lost empire deep in the heart of Africa–Hadon of Ancient Opar and Flight to Opar. Both novels were reprinted by Subterranean Press earlier this year in Gods of Opar: Tales of Lost Khokarsa, an omnibus volume that joined the first two novels in the series with their long-awaited conclusion, The Song of Kwasin, co-authored by Farmer and Christopher Paul Carey. Now Meteor House is proud to announce the publication of Exiles of Kho, a brand-new 30,000-word novella set in the world of Farmer’s Khokarsa series and written by Christopher Paul Carey.

Chris was licensed by the Philip José Farmer Family Trust to pen Exiles, an official prequel set 800 years before the main series. It tells the story of the priestess-heroine Lupoeth as she confronts deadly beasts, savage Neanderthals, conspiring enemies, even Sahhindar, the god of Time and bronze, in her attempt to found a new colony in the hinterlands of the ancient African empire of Khokarsa.

At 11 AM on Friday, August 10th, Christopher Paul Carey will be signing the entire run of the limited edition Exiles of Kho at PulpFest/FarmerCon. For further details on the book and this exciting event, please visit the Meteor House website.

The cover and interior art of Exiles of Kho is by Mike Hoffman.


Meet the New Fictioneers: Chris Carey

(July 26, 2012) They were called scribes, word slingers, hacks, and penny-a-worders. But perhaps the most favored term, especially among the men and women who labored for the bloody pulps, was fictioneer or, more specifically, a fiction writer, particularly a prolific creator of commercial or pulp fiction.

Join PulpFest as we celebrate today’s fictioneers—the authors writing the new pulp fiction. Christopher Paul Carey will get things rolling on August 10th. He is the co-author, with Philip José Farmer, of The Song of Kwasin, part of a trilogy published by Subterranean Press in the omnibus Gods of Opar: Tales of Lost Khokarsa. He’s also an editor for Paizo Publishing’s Planet Stories imprint, and has edited three collections of Philip José Farmer’s fiction for Subterranean Press. His short fiction can be found in such anthologies as the Black Coat Press Tales of the Shadowmen series, The Worlds of Philip José Farmer books from Meteor House, and The Avenger: The Justice, Inc. Files, published by Moonstone Books. Visit him online at Christopher Paul Carey.

For this year’s New Fictioneers readings, Chris will be reading from The Song of Kwasin and Exiles of Kho, forthcoming from Meteor Press. Please join him in the PulpFest 2012 programming area on Friday afternoon at 1 PM.

Bob Eggleton provided the dust jacket art for the Subterranean Press edition of Gods of Opar, pictured above.


Bill Maynard and the Yellow Peril

(July 27, 2012) William Patrick Maynard had the good fortune to be licensed by Sax Rohmer’s literary estate to revive the Fu Manchu thrillers. His first novel, The Terror of Fu Manchu, was published in 2009 by Black Coat Press. He returns to PulpFest this year with its sequel, The Destiny of Fu Manchu.

Bill’s short fiction has appeared in The Ruby Files (Airship 27), Gaslight Grotesque (EDGE Publishing), and Tales of the Shadowmen: Grand Guignol (Black Coat Press). He pens a weekly pulp fiction column for The Black Gate and was formerly a regular contributor to The Cimmerian. His articles have been published in Blood and Thunder and other journals. He is a past nominee of a Pulp Factory Award for Best Pulp Novel and a Rondo Award for Best Genre Article in a Periodical. He recently completed the screenplay for the noir thriller, Tea Money, with the bestselling author of the original novel, Tom Bleecker. Forthcoming are The Occult Case Book of Shankar Hardwicke and a hardboiled detective novel, Lawhead.

Meet “the yellow peril incarnate in one man” as William Patrick Maynard presents The Destiny of Fu Manchu in a New Fictioneers reading on Friday, August 10th, at 2 PM.

The front cover art for the Black Coat Press edition of The Destiny of Fu Manchu was created by Christine Clavel.


Dr. Death and the New Fictioneers

(July 28, 2012) Tommy Hancock, first and foremost, is a pulp fan. What form it comes in really doesn’t matter to him–magazine, book, movie, radio, comic… He enjoys them all and is really looking forward to his first PulpFest as both a fan and as a New Fictioneer.

A writer and an actor, Tommy is also the editor-in-chief for one of the leading publishers in the “New Pulp” movement, Pro Se Press. In addition to writing for his own company, Tommy has also turned out stories for Airship 27, Age of Adventure, Pulpwork Press, BEN Books, and other publishers. He is the founder and organizer of Pulp Ark, the official “New Pulp” convention and one of the leaders of the New Pulp Movement. For Radio Archives, he is editing Nightbeat, an original prose anthology based on the radio drama from the 1950s. He also edits the Radio Archives newsletter and serves as an editor, writer, and promotions coordinator for Moonstone Books.

At 3 PM on Friday, August 10th, join Tommy Hancock as he reads from “The Rook Nevermore!” a story featuring the villainous Dr. Death. It appeared in the recent Tales of The Rook. He’ll also be reading from “West of Fort Smith,” from the Pulpwork Press anthology How the West Was Weird II. Many thanks to Tommy and to all of our New Fictioneers.

The Pro Se Press edition of Tales of the Rook features explosive front cover art by Bob Hall.


Murania Press Sale

(July 29, 2012) PulpFestis coming up fast now: the convention begins in less than two weeks. We’ve packed the dealers room—in fact, we’re still getting requests for tables—and registrations are on a par with last year’s record-breaking total. Moreover, if previous years are any guide, our 2012 show will have a sizable number of first-timers…relative newbies to the hobby.

With this in mind, Ed Hulse of Murania Press has decided to offer—at PulpFest 2012, while supplies last, and only for the duration of the show—a 20% discount on all Murania Press books, past and present. This offer does not extend to issues of Blood ‘n’ Thunder, mind you, just such Murania books as The Best of Blood ‘n’ Thunder, Blood ‘n’ Thunder’s Cliffhanger Classics, The Blood ‘n’ Thunder Guide to Collecting Pulps, and the Classic Pulp Reprints line: Gordon Young’s Savages, J. Allan Dunn’s Barehanded Castaways, and A. M. Chisholm’s Pirates of the Pines.

Ed has decided to offer this generous discount to thank those who are supporting PulpFest in our first year at a new and more expensive venue, the Hyatt Regency Columbus. For further details, visit the Special Murania Press Sale at Murania’s website.


Win Scott Eckert: Wold Newton

New Fictioneer

(July 29, 2012) Along with Philip José Farmer, Win Scott Eckert is the co-author of the Wold Newton novel The Evil in Pemberley House, which concerns the daughter of a certain bronze-skinned hero. Additionally, Win has written the critically acclaimed two-volume Crossovers: A Secret Chronology of the World as well as numerous tales featuring adventure and pulp characters, including Sherlock Holmes, Zorro, The Avenger, Captain Midnight, The Scarlet Pimpernel, and The Green Hornet. He is also an editor for Moonstone Books.

As part of PulpFest‘s continuing salute to today’s word slingers known as The New Fictioneers, Win will be reading selections from “Progress,” a tale from The Green Hornet: Still at Large;  “According to Plan of a One-Eyed Trickster,” from The Avenger: Tales from the Roaring Crucible, forthcoming from Moonstone Books; and “The Wild Huntsman,” a new Wold Newton story from The Worlds of Philip José Farmer 3: Portraits of a Trickster. He’ll also be available for questions, critiques, autographs, and may have a teaser from a new Philip José Farmer/Wold Newton project.

Be sure to join Win Scott Eckert on Saturday, August 11th, beginning at 2:30 PM for the last of our New Fictioneers readings. In the meantime, you can find him on the web at Win Scott Eckert.com.

Doug Klauba created the front cover for Moonstone Books’ The Green Hornet: Still at Large.


The New Pulp Fiction

(July 30, 2012) Over the last few years, some of today’s finest writers have turned their talents toward pulp fiction. With a growing number of publishers producing what has been termed “New Pulp,” a genre most had thought dead is being reborn. At PulpFest, Airship 27 editor-in-chief Ron Fortier will moderate a panel of writers who will explore this renaissance and what it portends for the future of the pulp genre.

That contemporary pulp fiction is alive and healthy is evidenced by the five writers who will appear on this year’s New Pulp Fiction panel–Jim Beard, author of the Captain Action novel, Riddle of the Glowing Men, that will make its debut at PulpFest 2012; Rick Lai, whose stories have appeared regularly in the Tales of the Shadowmen anthologies published by Black Coat Press; William Patrick Maynard, author of The Destiny of Fu Manchu and The Terror of Fu Manchu, the first authorized Fu Manchu thrillers in over twenty years; Art Sippo, author of Sun Koh: Heir of Atlantis, nominated for best pulp novel of 2010, and one of the hosts of The Book Cave, a podcast about books, comics, pulps, and more; and Duane Spurlock, an author, editor, and illustrator who has written tales featuring Ki-Gor, the Jungle Lord for both Wild Cat Books and Airship 27, and other “New Pulp” fiction.

Join Ron Fortier and his panelists at 1 PM on Saturday, August 11th, for The New Pulp Fiction. Audience participation will be very much welcomed.

Tom Gianni did the front cover for The Avenger: The Justice, Inc. Files, edited by Joe Gentile and Howard Hopkins and published in 2011 by Moonstone Books.


In Memory of Howard & David

(July 31, 2012) The pulp community lost a number of its leading members in 2011 and 2012. Right around the Christmas holidays, Rusty Hevelin and Glenn Lord passed on. Both had lived long and fulfilling lives. They will be remembered during two short memorials at this year’s PulpFest.

Unfortunately, the winter months also claimed two other highly regarded pulp fans–David Burton and Howard Hopkins. The former passed in early December and the latter about a month after. Both were in their early fifties.

David was an accomplished artist, writer, and poet. Primarily self-taught, he eventually taught others the craft of illustration, most notably through lessons at his local library. In a way, that sums up what made him so special:  he was an especially giving person, always there for anyone who needed help or advice, and his work for various charities is well-documented.

David’s artwork was absolutely stunning. His depictions of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ creations were met with much critical acclaim. Danton Burroughs suggested that David’s illustrations for A Princess of Mars were probably the best that were ever done. The legendary science-fiction and fantasy author Ray Bradbury commissioned David to do a painting of King Kong for his office. He was a friend of Al Williamson, Gary Gianni, Michael Kaluta, and other well-known artists. Although David remained fairly unknown outside of pop and pulp culture circles, he strived to follow his dreams despite a lack of commercial success.

David Burton was a gentle soul, a humble man, a talented artist, and a good friend. He will be sorely missed.

Howard Hopkins became involved with the pulp community through editing Golden Perils, one of the leading pulp fanzines of the 1980’s. Dubbed the “prettiest fanzine in pulpdom,” it featured articles and artwork on the pulps and other aspects of culture. In print form, it ran for twenty issues. In 2001, Howard began to publish it in the e-magazine format and it lasted another twenty issues.

Editing was just one of Howard’s many talents. He was also a writer. From his home in Maine, he authored over seventy  horror stories, Westerns (using the pseudonym Lance Howard), and the children’s series The Chloe Files. He was working on the fifth installment in this series at the time of his death. Additionally, he penned the first book-length study of the Street & Smith character known as The Avenger. Entitled The Gray Nemesis, it was published in 1992.

“New Pulp” author and editor Tommy Hancock has written elsewhere: “Whether or not he was tackling a known character from the vast library of pulp and literature, editing the work of others (who were) putting their own brand on what has come before, or crafting all new tales to terrify, tantalize, and tease from his own expansive imagination, Howard always brought something extra to what he did….There was a vitality, a strength, an ever present energy to Howard’s work…this palpable wave of excitement, of happiness to be digging his way into this work that wasn’t just a job, but more of a life’s work.”

On Saturday, August 11th at 3:30 PM, please join author Win Scott Eckert and Wild Cat Books publisher Ron Hanna as they celebrate the lives of these two fine men.

Pictured above is one of David Burton’s illustrations for Edgar Rice Burroughs’ A Princess of Mars, published by Leanta Books, and an illustration advertising Howard Hopkins’ The Gray Nemesis, published by Golden Perils Press.


Donations to the Cause

(Aug. 1, 2012) As happens every year, PulpFest 2012 will be giving away a variety of books and other items to our attendees. We would like to thank the following organizations for their generous contributions to our convention:

Book Source Magazine for sending copies of their magazine for free distribution at PulpFest.

Neil and Leigh Mechem of Girasol Collectables for their extremely generous donation of back numbers from their Pulp Doubles series, each featuring two adventures of The Spider.

Gordon Van Gelder and The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, the award-winning magazine that celebrated its sixtieth anniversary in 2009, for donating a large quantity of back issues to give to our members.

Engle Publishing for sending copies of The Paper & Advertising Collectors’ Marketplace for distribution free of charge at PulpFest.

Tom Brown and Radio Archives, the leading producer of old time radio collections and pulp audiobooks, for sending sample CDs of their superb readings of old pulp yarns as well as five complete audiobooks for doorprizes.

Greg Shepard and Stark House Press, publisher of some of the best mystery and supernatural fiction of the past hundred years, for their very generous donation of several cartons of their top-notch books.

We’d also like to thank Acorn Bookshop, Blue Jacket Books, Bonnett’s Bookstore, Dark Star Books, Duncan Books, The Dust Jacket, Karen Wickliff Books, Mavericks Cards and Comics, and the many book fairs and conventions that helped us promote our convention.

The image above is from the May-June 2012 issue of Fantasy & Science Fiction featuring a front cover by Max Bertolini.


Win with Doc Savage or The Spider

(Aug. 1, 2012) Thanks to Tom Brown and Radio Archives, the leading producer of old time radio collections and pulp audiobooks, PulpFest 2012 will be giving away one door prize on Thursday, two door prizes on Friday, and two more on Saturday. We have five terrific Radio Archives audiobooks featuring superb readings of three Spider yarns and two Doc Savageadventures. Of course, you have to be at the convention for a chance to win one of these great prizes.

We’ll be awarding one audiobook per evening and one audiobook about noontime on Friday and Saturday. So if you plan to be at PulpFest 2012 from August 9 through August 12, you’ll have a chance to take home a free Radio Archives audiobook. Wow!!!

Norvell Page’s “Prince of the Red Looters,” part of Radio Spirits’ Will Murray’s Pulp Classics audiobooks, offers cover art by John Newton Howitt.


Just a Week to Go!

(Aug. 2, 2012) PulpFest 2012 will start on Thursday, August 9th. The dealer room will be open only to registered sellers to set up their displays from 4 PM to 11 PM. Beginning at 8 PM, a full slate of programming will get underway. Ohio State’s Thompson Library will also offer a free lecture on the pulps at 4:30 PM. So there will be plenty to do for those who arrive early for the Summer’s Great Pulp Con!

Thursday, August 9

4:00 PM – 11:00 PM – Dealer Set-Up – the dealers’ room will be open only to dealers to assemble their displays.

4:30 PM – The Gunslinger-Writer – John Locke discusses the working conditions faced by the army of writers who labored for the pulps in this presentation at Ohio State’s Thompson Library.

6:00 PM – 9:00 PM – Early Registration – general members and dealers will be able to register for PulpFest.

Evening Programming

8:00 PM – The French Connection – Rick Lai will discuss “How French Literature May Have Influenced American Pulp Heroes” in a presentation concerning The Count of Monte Cristo, Arsene Lupin, Fantomas, Doc Savage, The Shadow, Zorro, and more.

9:00 PM – At the Newsstand with Hulse and Roberts – Professor Garyn G. Roberts and Blood ‘n’ Thunder editor Ed Hulse salute the 75th anniversary of John W. Campbell‘s arrival at Astounding Stories and the beginning of the Golden Age of Science Fiction.

10:00 PM – Tarzan: A Hero for the Ages – Henry G. Franke, III, editor of The Burroughs Bulletin, discusses Edgar Rice Burroughs’ best-known creation–Tarzan of the Apes (100 years old in October)–and the character’s many incarnations in popular culture.

11:00 PM – The New Adventures of Tarzan – Blood ‘n’ Thunder editor Ed Hulse offers his insights into the history of Edgar Rice Burrough’s involvement with the star-crossed 1934 film serial. A showing of the 72-minute cutdown of the chapter play will follow.

Friday, August 10

9:00 AM – 5 PM – Wheeling and Dealing – the dealers’ room will be open to all.

11:00 AM – Exiles of Kho Book Launch – author Christopher Paul Carey will be signing the limited edition release of his book

1:00 PM – The New Fictioneers – Christopher Paul Carey will read from his novel co-authored with Philip José Farmer, The Song of Kwasin, part of the Gods of Opar: Tales of Lost Khokarsa omnibus, forthcoming from Subterranean Press.

2:00 PM – The New Fictioneers – William Patrick Maynard will read from his new, fully authorized novel, The Destiny of Fu Manchu, a continuation of the classic mystery and adventure series created by Sax Rohmer.

3:00 PM – The New Fictioneers – Ron Fortier, editor-in-chief for Airship 27, will read from his award-winning Avenger story, “Vengeance Is Mine,” from The Justice Inc. Files.

Evening Programming

6:55 PM – Welcome to PulpFest – Jack Cullers offers an official welcome.

7:00 PM – Lord Tyger, Time’s Last Gift, and the Gods of Opar – our FarmerCon VII panelists discuss a sampling of the Burroughs and Verne-inspired works of Philip José Farmer. Moderated by Paul Spiteri, editor of Pearls from Peoria and featuring authors Win Scott Eckert and Christopher Paul Carey.

8:00 PM – Guest of Honor Presentation – the award-winning science-fiction author and Burroughs authority Mike Resnick will talk about his years as a fan of Edgar Rice Burroughs, including his association with ERB-dom and his early Burroughs pastiches. He’ll also explore his years as a pseudonymous author and as a science-fiction professional and committed science-fiction fan.

9:00 PM – Barsoom and Beyond: Mars in the Pulps – panel presentation on various depictions of the Red Planet found in the pulps. Featuring Henry G. Franke, III, editor of The Burroughs Bulletin; Stephen Haffner of Haffner Press; noted pulp historian Will Murray; and Garyn G. Roberts, editor of The Prentice Hall Anthology of Science Fiction and Fantasy. Moderated by PulpFest’s Ed Hulse.

10:00 PM – James Allen St. John – David Saunders examines the life and work of  J. Allen St. John, the artist most associated with the work of Edgar Rice Burroughs. David will present many glorious examples of the artist’s finest works as well as behind-the-scene photos of the artist, his studio, his art school, and his  private club, as well as rare sketches of familiar masterpieces to better appreciate his working methods.

11:00 PM – Tarzan on Mars – film program includes Bob Clampett’s 1936 animated footage from Warlord of Mars and the United States premier of Last Flight, a short film made in New Zealand that is set on Mars.  I, Tarzan features George McWhorter, editor emeritus of The Burroughs Bulletin, Philip José Farmer, Grand Master of Science Fiction, and popular culture expert Francis Lacassin in a discussion about Edgar Rice Burroughs’ most famous creation, Tarzan.

Saturday, August 11

9:00 AM – 5 PM – Wheeling and Dealing – the dealers’ room will be open to all.

11:00 AM – Captain Action Book Signing – Jim Beard will be signing copies at the Airship 27 tables.

1:00 PM – The New Pulp Fiction – Ron Fortier of Airship 27 moderates a panel featuring contemporary authors inspired by the pulp fiction of yore. Jim Beard, Rick Lai, William Patrick Maynard, Art Sippo, and Duane Spurlock will join Ron for a discussion of New Pulp fiction.

2:30 PM – The New Fictioneers – one of the founders of the New Pulp movement, Win Scott Eckert, will read from works written for The Green Hornet: Still at Large, The Avenger: Tales from the Roaring Crucible, and The Worlds of Philip José Farmer 3.

3:30 PM – A Tribute to Howard Hopkins and David Burton – author and editor Win Scott Eckert and Wild Cat Books publisher Ron Hanna will lead a celebration of the lives and works of these two creative pulp fans, recently departed.

Evening Programming

7:00 PM – PulpFest 2012 Business Meeting – all members are invited to ask questions and offer suggestions at this session.

7:20 PM – 2012 Munsey Award Presentation – who will be the winner of this year’s Rusty Hevelin Service Award? The award will be presented by Anthony Tollin, the winner of last year’s Munsey. A brief tribute to Rusty Hevelin, the guiding light of Pulpcon, will also take place at this time.

7:30 PM – The Illustrated Conan – artists Jim and Ruth Keegan offer a look at Conan of Cimmeria as depicted by various illustrators over the last eight decades. They will be joined by Mark Schultz, who will offer a contemporary perspective on illustrating Robert E. Howard’s barbarian king.

8:30 PM – Robert E. Howard’s Conan and the Birth of Sword and Sorcery – Rusty Burke, president of the Robert E. Howard Foundation moderates this panel about Conan of Cimmeria and the author who created the sword-and-sorcery genre. Panelists will include Don Herron, editor of The Dark Barbarian and The Barbaric Triumph, Brian Leno, an award-winning Howard scholar, and John D. Squires, publisher of JDS Books.

9:30 PM – Saturday Night at the Auction – “Going, going, gone.” Bring your PulpFest badge and your checkbook and get ready to snatch up some of the gems and bargains typically offered. In addition to the usual PulpFest consignments, pulp historian Albert Tonik’s substantial collection will be up for bids.

Sunday, August 12

Daytime Schedule

9:00 AM – 2 PM – Wheeling and Dealing – the dealers’ room will be open to all.


Catch J. Allen St. John on Film

(Aug. 3, 2012) PulpFest 2012 will not only have top-notch movies during our scheduled film presentations, some of our presenters will also include sensational films during their talks. David Saunders, for instance, will show a little known short silent film of J. Allen St. John, the famed illustrator of many stories by Edgar Rice Burroughs. David came across the rare footage while researching an obscure art club in Chicago, where the resident librarian had an unlabeled reel of film that shows J. Allen St. John teaching an art class and mugging for the camera. No one knew anything about the two-minute silent film, but David has since identified it as a 1928 document of the Chicago Businessmen’s Art Club, a private club of professional newspaper and advertising artists that wanted to hone their skills and socialize with each other. David has created a special digital version of the footage just for visitors to PulpFest.

This rare film will be shown during David’s Pulp Artist Profile of J. Allen St. John at 10 PM on Friday, August 10th, during PulpFest‘s evening programming.


Another PulpFest Special Sale

(Aug. 4, 2012) Less than a week before the convention begins, we now get word that Ron Hanna, long-time fan and publisher of Wild Cat Books, will make PulpFestthe site of what he’s calling “a Super-Special Clearance Sale.” Since he will soon be marrying (congratulations, Ron!) and moving across the country, Mr. Wild Cat will be selling the vast majority of his stock at $3.00 per book, with no limit on quantity.

In addition to publishing the fanzine Secret Sanctum, Ron was among the pioneers of what has been dubbed the “New Pulp” movement. Among the best-selling Wild Cat titles in his sale are Rabbit Heart, The Damned Thing, and several different volumes of The Rook by Barry Reese (all first printings, not the new Pro Se Press reprint volumes). Also included in the sale will be Tales of the Norse Gods by Rob Morganbesser and Zombies in Time and Space by John L. French, in addition to “many issues” of Ron’s popular Startling Stories revival.

The only Wild Cat titles still being offered at their regular list prices are Ron’s two latest releases: the Summer 2012 issue of Startling Stories and Martin Powell’s The Halloween Legion. Otherwise, his clearance sale promises to be a golden opportunity for “New Pulp” fans and collectors attending the convention.

Jason Levesque contributed the cover art to Barry Reese’s Rabbit Heart, published in 2009 by Wild Cat Books.


Ron Fortier, New Fictioneer

(Aug. 4, 2012) Due to work commitments, Tommy Hancock of ProSe Press will be unable to read at PulpFest 2012. In his place will be the editor-in-chief of Airship 27, the inimitable Ron Fortier. A professional writer for over twenty-five years, Ron and his partner, Rob Davis, are two of the leading publishers in the “New Pulp Fiction” category.

Since 2007, Airship 27 has revived long moribund pulp characters such as the Green Lama, Jimmy Anthony, the Masked Rider, Secret Agent X, and Fortier’s own version of Ace Periodicals’ Captain Hazzard. Their books have inspired contemporary writers and artists to turn out new adventures featuring many of the characters long remembered by the pulp community.

At 3 PM on Friday, August 10th, Ron will be reading from his Avenger story, “Vengeance Is Mine,” winner of the Pulp Factory Award for Best Pulp Short Story of 2011. It was published in the Moonstone Books anthology, The Justice Inc. Files. Many thanks to Ron for stepping in at the last minute to fill Tommy’s spot.

Tom Gianni did the front cover for The Avenger: The Justice, Inc. Files, edited by Joe Gentile and Howard Hopkins and published in 2011 by Moonstone Books.


Duane Spurlock Joins New Pulp Panel

(Aug. 5, 2012) Writer, editor, and illustrator Duane Spurlock has agreed to fill in for Tommy Hancock on Ron Fortier’s The New Pulp Fictionpanel.

Duane has written tales featuring Ki-Gor, the Jungle Lord for both Wild Cat Books and Airship 27. In “A Quiet Night in the Dark in La Plata, Missouri, 1942,” a surprise visitor shares an astonishing story with Doc Savage author Lester Dent that leads to deadly consequences in the writer’s quiet rural town. His humorous Western, “Pretty Polly,” appeared in Where Legends Ride, an anthology published by Express Westerns. You can read more about Duane’s work by visiting his blog at InterroBang.

The New Pulp Fiction panel will take place at 1 PM on Saturday, August 11th.


Al Tonik Auction 2012

(Aug. 5, 2012) After weeks of cataloging Albert Tonik’s holdings, your PulpFest team is ready to share what will be selling at this year’s auction. All told, we’ll be offering about 70 percent of Al’s impressive collection of hardcovers, paperbacks, pulps, dime novels, comic books, fanzines, and reference books. In 2013, we’ll be selling what remains of his collection, largely single item reference books.

We will be selling books, magazines, artwork, and other items from a variety of categories including indices, bibliographies, pulp reference books, comic books, dime novel and paperback references, pulp reprints, artwork, and more. Many of the items–even those listed individually in our catalog–will sell in lots. Please note that the items are not listed in auction lot order. We have not yet sorted the books in that fashion.

Under the pulp reprint category of our auction catalog, all Weinberg Pulp Classics, Odyssey Publications’ reprints, and Dimedia’s Spider & Operator #5 reprints will be sold in the dealers’ room by Mike Chomko, Books. Mike will also be selling Albert’s Corinth-Regency and Hanos pulp reprints, all at very reasonable prices. Please stop by his tables for some exceptional bargains.

Click on the link below to download a copy of the Tonik auction catalog:

PulpFest 2012 Tonik Auction (PDF file)


PulpFest 2012 Begins Thursday

(Aug. 6, 2012) PulpFest 2012 will begin on Thursday evening, August 9th, with a salute to the 100th anniversary of Tarzan. Edgar Rice Burroughs’ world-renowned character was introduced to the public in the novel “Tarzan of the Apes,” published in its entirety in the October 1912 issue of Munsey’s The All-Story. Friday will bring a celebration of the 100th anniversary of Burroughs’ first novel, “Under the Moons of Mars,” the tale that introduced John Carter to lovers of adventure and interplanetary fiction. On Saturday, PulpFestturns to Robert E. Howard’s Conan of Cimmeria, who turns eighty in December.

Early indications are that we will surpass last year’s show both in our number of registrations and rooms booked at the hotel. So this year’s con will be our biggest and best yet. We are still receiving registrations every day, many from people who have never attended PulpFest before. If you’ve been thinking about attending, but still haven’t pulled the trigger, you probably should call the hotel and make your reservation immediately. You can do so by calling 1-888-421-1442 or 1-614-463-1234 or by clicking our link to the Hyatt Regency Columbus on our home page under “Book a Room.” Please be sure to mention PulpFest when placing your reservation.

The Hyatt Regency is located at 350 North High Street in downtown Columbus, Ohio. The hotel is south of I-670, just 15-20 minutes from Columbus International Airport. In the heart of the active Arena District, the Hyatt Regency is just a few minutes’ walk from the trendy Short North Arts District. There are shops and restaurants galore right outside the hotel’s entrance.

From 4 PM to 11 PM on Thursday, the dealers’ room will be open for exhibitors to set up their displays. During set-up, dealers are asked to arrange their displays and, upon completion, cover them up and then depart the room. No buying, selling, or trading will be permitted during Thursday’s set-up. Dealers should please refrain from all such activity.

At this point, we urge all of our dealers to take full advantage of our generous load-in and set-up period. After all, this is our first year in a new location, and while uploading and transporting your goods should be much easier–there’s a side entrance to the hotel for loading and we have been granted exclusive use of a freight elevator–there is bound to be a certain amount of disorientation as folks negotiate their way around the Hyatt for the first time. We feel very strongly that attendees have every right to expect a fully-set-up hucksters room as soon as the convention opens on Friday, which is why PulpFest has always offered a lengthy load-in period on Thursday from 4  – 11 PM. We welcome your cooperation in this aspect of the show.

Early registration for the general membership will also take place on Thursday, beginning at 6 PM at a location to be determined. All members, dealers included, can pick up their registration packets at this time. For those of you who have not yet registered for PulpFest, Thursday evening will be an ideal time to do so. Three-day memberships will be available for $35. Single day memberships costing $15 per day will also be available. Please visit our Registration page for further details.

The dealers’ room will open to all members on Friday, August 10th at 9 AM and remain open until 5 PM. It will be open from 9 AM to 5 PM on Saturday and from 9 AM to 2 PM on Sunday. Dealers will be allowed to enter the room approximately 15 minutes prior to opening in order to prepare their displays.

There will be programming on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evenings and several presentations during the Friday and Saturday afternoon. Please visit our Programming page for further details.

All PulpFest attendees will be able to submit material for inclusion in the Saturday Night Auction. For additional information, please visit our Auctions page under “Programming” or contact Barry Traylor via email at barry@pulpfest.com. However, due to the substantial amount of material submitted by Al Tonik, there will be limits on the number of lots offered by each consignee. The sooner you submit your consignment, the more likely that it will be including in our auction.

For those attendees who would like to ship their purchases to their homes, PulpFest 2012 has arranged for a local UPS provider to be available at the hotel on Sunday, August 12th, starting at 12:00 PM. Further information is available on our FAQ  page.

The entire PulpFest 2012 organizing committee–Mike Chomko, Jack Cullers, Ed Hulse, and Barry Traylor–is looking forward to seeing you all in just a few days. Have a safe trip to Columbus.


NASA & PulpFest and 100 Years of Mars

(Aug. 7, 2012) Early on August 6th, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration joined PulpFest 2012 in its celebration of the hundredth anniversary of the initial publication of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ classic adventure story, “Under the Moons of Mars.” At 1:32 AM, eastern time, NASA landed its exploration rover, Curiosity, on the red planet.

The one-ton, six-wheeled laboratory Curiosity is expected to revolutionize our understanding of Mars, as it attempts to gather evidence that the planet is or was capable of fostering life, probably in microbial form. The spacecraft is also expected to pave the way for important leaps in deep-space exploration, including bringing Martian rock or soil back to Earth for detailed analysis and, eventually, human exploration.

Burroughs’ novel, better known under its book title, A Princess of Mars, was originally published in six monthly parts, beginning in February 1912. It first appeared in the Munsey pulp magazine, The All-Story. On Friday evening, August 10th, PulpFest will celebrate the story’s hundredth anniversary with a panel entitled Barsoom and Beyond: Mars in the Pulps.

Will Curiosity discover evidence of long-gone Martian princesses, the sacred River Iss, four-armed green Martian Tharks, and giant white apes? Only time will tell. But for four days, beginning on Thursday evening at 6 PM and running through Sunday afternoon, August 12th, you’ll be able to explore the fantastic imaginings of Edgar Rice Burroughs and much more by joining PulpFest in downtown Columbus, Ohio.

Frank E. Schoonover created the dust jacket for the 1st edition of A Princess of Mars, published by A. C. McClurg & Co. in 1917.


 Safe Journey

(Aug. 9, 2012) PulpFest 2012 will begin tomorrow, August 9th. Dealer set-up will take place from 4 PM to 11 PM. Early registration will begin at 6 PM at a location to be determined. Information will be available upon your arrival at the hotel.

To all of you who will be attending PulpFest, we look forward to seeing you. Please have a safe journey to Columbus.

Barry Traylor, Ed Hulse, Jack Cullers, and Mike Chomko–your PulpFest Organizing Committee.

The mode of travel depicted on the cover to the September 1936 issue of Spicy Stories is not recommended for home use. The image is from Phil Stephensen-Payne’s Galactic Central website. The artist is not known.


PulpFest 2012 to Begin

(Aug. 9, 2012) Tonight at 8 PM, PulpFest 2012 will begin with a look at French influences on the pulps and a conversation saluting the 75th anniversary of John Campbell’s arrival at Astounding. Next we’ll celebrate the 100th birthday of Edgar Rice Burrough’s  Tarzan  with presentations on the character’s influence on pop culture and the film The New Adventures of Tarzan.

You can find additional details about these and all of our programming at www.pulpfest.com/programming.

The PulpFest dealer room will open for business beginning at 9 AM on Friday, August 10th. You can register early for what is typically a feeding frenzy as book and pulp collectors scour the room searching for this or that long elusive volume. All you have to do is arrive by Thursday evening at the Hyatt Regency Columbus and sign up for the convention from 6 PM – 9 PM.

Admission to the show is $15 per day or $35 for all three days, allowing entry to all convention activities. The general public is very much welcome to attend.

The cover art above is by Wesso for the September 1937 issue of  Astounding Stories.


 PulpFest 2012 Underway

(Aug. 10, 2012) PulpFest 2012 got underway on Thursday evening with a full slate of programming starting at 8 PM. Then, just a few minutes ago, the doors to the PulpFest dealers’ roomopened. Upon entry to the Hyatt’s spacious exhibition hall, collectors were greeted by more than 100 tables filled with pulps, books, original artwork, vintage comics, and other collectibles. And the frenzy began!

There’s still plenty of time to join in on the fun. The dealers’ room will be open until 5 PM today and from 9 AM to 5 PM on Saturday. Sunday will be a bit shorter, from 9 AM to 2 PM. Friday’s programming includes three author readings in the afternoon. The evening programming will begin at 7 PM. There will be presentations concerning the Burroughs-related work of Philip José Farmer, a panel presentation on Mars in the pulps, an examination of the life and work of aritst J. Allen St. John, and a film program that includes the U. S. premier of Last Flight, a short film directed by Damon Keen.

The highlight of the evening will be a talk by the award-winning Guest of Honor, science-fiction author Mike Resnick. A wonderful raconteur, Mike will talk about his years as a fan of Edgar Rice Burroughs, including his association with ERB-dom and his early Burroughs pastiches. He’ll also explore his years as a pseudonymous author and as a science-fiction professional and committed science-fiction fan.

Saturday’s programming will center around Conan, the character created by Robert E. Howard. There will be a panel on the author and his character and a presentation on the illustrators of Conan, offered by artists Jim & Ruth Keegan and Mark Schultz. An auction featuring the collection of pulp historian Albert Tonik will end the night’s festivities. A highlight of this auction will be a pulp cover recreation by Rafael DeSoto, one of the leading artists of the pulp era. Visit our programming page for further details.

Admission to the convention is $15 per day or $35 for all three days, allowing entry to all convention activities. The general public is very much welcome to attend.


PulpFest 2012 Continues

(Aug. 11, 2012) There’s still time to get in on the action. The dealers’ room will be open today from 9 AM to 5 PM and from 9 AM to 2 PM on Sunday. Admission to PulpFestis $15 for Saturday and $5 for Sunday.

Today at 1 PM, Ron Fortier of Airship 27 will host a forum on “new pulp fiction.” An author reading and a memorial for artist David Burton and author Howard Hopkins will follow.

Our evening programming begins at 7 PM. PulpFest 2012 will celebrate the 80th anniversary of Conan of Cimmeria, the creation of Robert E. Howard, with a panel on the author and his character and a presentation on the illustrators of Conan, offered by artists Jim & Ruth Keegan and Mark Schultz.

The presentation of the annual Rusty Hevelin Service Award, more commonly called The Munsey, and an auction featuring the collection of pulp historian Albert Tonik will also take place during the evening hours. A highlight of the auction will be a pulp cover recreation by Rafael DeSoto, one of the leading artists of the pulp era. Visit our programming page for further details.

Don’t let PulpFest 2012 slip by. Come to Columbus and join up!

The cover art above is by Margaret Brundage for the August 1934 issue of Weird Tales, illustrating Robert E. Howard’s “The Devil in Iron.” The scan was provided by Girasol Collectables.


And the Winner Is…

(Aug. 11, 2012) Matt Moring has been named the winner of the 2012 Munsey Award. Nominated by the general pulp community, Matt was selected by a panel consisting of all the living Lamont and Munsey Award winners. The award is a fine art print by Dan Zimmer of a painting by David Saunders. It is presented annually to a deserving person who has given of himself or herself for the betterment of the pulp community.

In relatively few years, Matt’s  Altus Press has published many rare pulp stories as well as non-fiction books dealing with the characters and history of the pulps. To date he has published all of Kendell Foster Crossen’s Green Lama stories, half of the adventures of Secret Agent X, Les Savage’s Senorita Scorpion stories, Fred Nebel’s Tough Dick Donahue private eye adventures, and collections of lesser known characters such as Johnston McCulley’s The Man in Purple, Paul Ernst’s Seekay, and Lester Dent’s The Blond Adder. His Dime Detective Companion is a superb reference to one of the leading detective magazines of the pulp era, while The Revised Complete Chronology of Bronze, written by Rick Lai, dissects the adventures of Doc Savage. Recently issued  is the thirtieth anniversary issue of Echoes, one of the best pulp history fanzines of all time. Together with Will Murray, Matt revived the Doc Savage series, publishing brand new stories featuring “The Man of Bronze” after a twenty-year absence. The Altus Press website is also an excellent reference source featuring links to The Pulp Superhero Index and The Echoes Index. Such energy needs to be recognized and rewarded. Matt Moring and others like him are the future of the pulp collecting hobby.

The voting for the 2012 Munsey Award actually ended in a tie. The other select individual, David J. Cullers, better known as Jack Cullers, is the chairman of the PulpFest committee. Jack has worked quietly and tirelessly for the pulp community for decades. A longtime volunteer for any number of pulp conventions, Jack has ferried guests of honor to and from airports and made sure they had a friendly face with whom to dine. He has stuffed and addressed envelopes, arranged for advertising, organized auctions, and done many other behind-the-scenes tasks, selflessly and without seeking accolades. Time and again, he has welcomed newcomers to the hobby, even inviting them to his home for dinner during their earliest pulp conventions. He has offered space at his dealer tables for down-on-their-luck pulpsters unable to attend conventions.

As PulpFest chairman, Jack has worked to assure that convention guests, dealers, presenters, and attendees are treated fairly and respectfully, helping everyone to feel welcome and comfortable at the convention. Of course, Jack could not have done all that he has done without the support of his wife, Sally, herself a longtime pulp con volunteer, often helping with registrations and auctions. His children and friends have also lent a hand. Come convention time, the “Cullers Clan” is hard at work, making sure things run as smoothly as possible.

Not wishing to diminish Matt Moring’s “day in the sun,” Jack asked that his name be withdrawn from consideration. However, the remaining members of the PulpFest committee felt that it was well past time that Jack and Sally Cullers’ devotion to the pulp community be recognized.

With this in mind, it was determined to issue a second award, The Rusty Hevelin Service Award, designed to recognize those individuals within the pulp community who have worked long and hard for the pulp community with little thought for individual recognition. It is meant to reward especially good works and is thus reserved only for those individuals who are most deserving. And no individuals are more deserving than Jack and Sally Cullers who have labored long and hard for our small community of pulp lovers.

Congratulations to Matt Moring, the 2012 winner of The Munsey Award, and to Jack and Sally Cullers, the 2012 winners of The Rusty Hevelin Service Award. All three individuals are most deserving of these honors.

Nominations are now being accepted for the 2013 Munsey and/or Rusty Awards. If you have someone in mind that you feel worthy, please let us know. Send the person’s name and a brief paragraph describing why you feel that person should be honored to Mike Chomko, 2217 W. Fairview Street, Allentown, PA 18104-6542 or to mike@pulpfest.com. Previous winners of the Lamont, Munsey, or Rusty Award are not eligible for the award. The deadline for nominations is May 31, 2013.


Start Making Plans for PulpFest 2013

(Aug. 12, 2012) PulpFest 2012 is drawing to a close, but there is still time to get in on the action. The dealers’ room will be open from 9 AM until 2 PM today. With most of our dealers getting ready to head for home, our admission for the day is only $5. There are no programming events scheduled for Sunday.

If you were not able to attend PulpFest in 2012, start making your plans right now to join the 42nd year of “The Summer’s Great Pulp Con” in 2013. The PulpFest committee will start making plans for next year’s convention within the next month.

To keep informed about PulpFest 2013, bookmark http://www.pulpfest.com/ and visit often. News about the convention can also be found on the PulpFest Facebook site at http://www.facebook.com/PulpFest. And for those who prefer their news short and sweet, follow our Twitter feed at https://twitter.com/pulpfest. Finally, there’s our email list. It’s the gray box to the right of this post. Subscribe to our list and be the first on your block to get news about PulpFest.

Many thanks to all those who attended this year’s convention. We hope everyone will be able to make it to PulpFest 2013!

The first issue of Street & Smith’s Doc Savage Magazine was published in March 1933 and sported a cover created by Walter M. Baumhofer, who was nicknamed the “King of the Pulps.”


Falling Leaves and Pulp Cons

(Oct. 6, 2012) While awaiting the arrival of PulpFest 2013, there are several regional conventions that will help satisfy your pulp interests during the autumn months. Scattered around the country, these more intimate gatherings of pulp fans are a great deal of fun and are very deserving of your support.

The 24th Annual NYC Collectable Paperback & Pulp Fiction Expo will be held on Sunday, October 14th at the Holiday Inn, 440 West 57th Street in New York City. This show, sponsored by Gary Lovisi’s Gryphon Books, always features a long guest list.

Doc Con 2012 will be held in Glendale, Arizona fr0m October 19th through the 21st at Comfort Suites University of Phoenix Stadium. Enthusiasts from around the country will be at this convention dedicated to Lester Dent’s Doc Savage.

Rich Harvey’s Pulp AdventureCon will take place Saturday, November 10th from 10 AM until 5 PM. This one-day show is a very enjoyable event, held once a year at the Ramada Inn in Bordentown, just off Exit 7 of the New Jersey Turnpike.

On November 17th, one week after Pulp AdventureCon, Ray Walsh will be holding the 42nd Classicon at the University Quality Inn in Lansing, Michigan. It is one of the longest running pulp and paperback gatherings in the country.

On the second Saturday of each and every month, the Gotham Pulp Collectors Club meets to talk about pulps and pulp collecting at the Hudson Park Library in Manhattan.

And please continue to visit the PulpFest website regularly for exciting news about next year’s convention.

Many thanks to the Fantasy Ink blog for providing the cover scan for the January 1931 issue of Macfadden‘s Ghost Stories. The artist is not known.


Many Thanks

(Nov. 15, 2012) Thanksgiving will soon be celebrated here in the USA. So now is the perfect time for the PulpFest Organizing Committee to thank the people and organizations whose invaluable assistance helped to make PulpFest 2012 a tremendous success. We could not have done it without you:

Our all-volunteer front desk staff–Maura Childers, Sam Childers, Aaron Cullers, Jack Cullers, Sally Cullers, and Samantha Cullers; our panelists, presenters, and auctioneers–Jim Beard, Rusty Burke, Christopher Paul Carey, REHupa editor Bill Cavalier, Win Scott Eckert, Ron Fortier, Henry G. Franke, III, Greg Gick, John Gunnison, Stephen Haffner, Ron Hanna, Don Herron, Ed Hulse, Jim and Ruth Keegan, Damon Keen, director of Last Flight, Rick Lai, Brian Leno, William Patrick Maynard, Will Murray, guest-of-honor Mike Resnick, Garyn Roberts, Joe Saine, David Saunders, Mark Schultz, Dr. Art Sippo, Paul Spiteri, Duane Spurlock, Gail Sussman and Albert Tonik, and Anthony Tollin; our behind-the-scenes help, Mike Chomko, Peter Chomko, Mike Croteau of FarmerCon, Ohio State’s Eric Johnson, Chris Kalb, Lohr McKinstry, Michael Neno, Bruce Rosenberger Rick and Renee Thomas, Barry Traylor, Chuck Welch, Dan Zimmer,  and the staff of the Hyatt Regency Columbus.

The Organizing Committee would also like to thank the people who helped to create The Pulpster #21:

Tony Davis and Bill Lampkin, plus Monte Herridge, Morgan Holmes, Don Hutchison, David Rajchel, Don Ramlow, Mike Resnick, George Vanderburgh, Kez Wilson, John Wooley, and the magazine’s sponsors–Age of Aces, Jeff Canja, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Inc., Andy Fish and TheGreenGhost.Us, The Korshak Collection, Meteor House, Murania Press, The Pulp Factory, Damon Sasser, Radio Archives (who also provided the door prizes for PulpFest 2012), the “Take Me Back to Barsoom!” Facebook Group, Lance Thingmaker, Titan Books, Vanguard Press, and the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention.

Many thanks as well to the nominators and Lamont Award and Munsey Award  winners who helped to select the winner of this year’s Munsey, Matt Moring, as well as the winners of the first Rusty Hevelin Service Award, Jack and Sally Cullers. Congratulations to our three award winners and to all of the nominees for our 2012 awards.

Finally, thanks to all of the conventions, book and paper fairs, bookstores, web sites, magazines, newspapers, and other media outlets that helped to promote our show as well as the dealers, attending members and supporting members of PulpFest 2012. It was due to your encouragement and support that our convention was a great success. We hope to see you all back next summer along with a good many newcomers for PulpFest 2013. Details will be forthcoming in the months ahead. So please subscribe to our PulpFest email list through the small gray box found along the right side of our home page. You’ll also be able to find information at our Facebook site and through our Twitter account.

If you’d like to volunteer to help with PulpFest 2013, please email Mike Chomko, Jack Cullers, Ed Hulse, or Barry Traylor.

Many thanks to Laurie Powers of Laurie’s Wild West for providing the cover scan for the November 20, 1921 issue of The Popular Magazine, published by Street & Smith.


**** - Additional Reviews - ****

2012/11/18

If you would like to read more reviews about PulpFest 2012 you can find them at the following sites:

Argonotes–Nathan Madison, author of Anti-Foreign Imagery in American Pulps and Comic Books, 1920-1960, forthcoming from McFarland Publishing, presents a detailed report from the perspective of someone relatively “new to the entire pulp scene.”

The Book Cave–thanks to Jason Aiken, Art Sippo, and others, you’ll find recordings of many of the presentations featured at PulpFest 2012 on Ric Croxton’s podcast about books, comics, movie serials, old-time radio, and TV series.

Comic Related–“Captain” Ron Fortier of Airship 27 Productions offers a look at the convention and its “New Pulp” programming.

Eventized–writer, cartoonist and publisher Michael Neno presents a photo-diary of PulpFest 2012. You’ll find links to “Day II” and “Day III” on Michael’s site.

FourthHostCelestials–David Lee Smith shares over three-hundred photographs snapped at PulpFest 2012.

KomicskastBruce Rosenberger, first-time PulpFest attendee, recorded this podcast in mid-August 2012 concerning his trip to Columbus and its annual PulpFest.

Michael Haynes: A Writing Blog–Ohio native Michael Haynes presents an illustrated diary of his three days at PulpFest 2012. You’ll find links to “Day Two” and “Day Three” on Michael’s site.

Murania PressPulpFest committee member Ed Hulse, publisher of Blood ‘n’ Thunder and other Murania Press books and magazines offers an insider’s perspective on the convention.

Mystery*FileLamont Award winner Walker Martin looks at PulpFest from the viewpoint of a longtime collector who has been attending pulp cons since the early 1970s.

The Other Paper–reporter Jon Theiss of Columbus’ alternative weekly newspaper talks with PulpFest chairman Jack Cullers about the convention.

Up and Down These Mean Streets–the originator of San Francisco’s Dashiell Hammett Walking Tour, the longest-running literary tour in the United States, offers this view of the convention from someone who doesn’t “inhale pulp dust day in, day out.”

Please send any additions to the list above to Mike Chomko.

 

**** - Laurie’s Wild West - ****

2012/11/18

California-girl Laurie Powers has been to every PulpFest since the first one was held in 2009. One of the nominees for the 2012 Munsey Award, Laurie is the granddaughter of Paul S. Powers, a prolific author of pulp fiction during the 1930s and 40s. An author herself, you can find some of Laurie’s work at Laurie’s Wild West where she writes about pulp fiction, history, movies, Westerns, and much more. She is currently working on a biography of Daisy Bacon, the editor of Street & Smith’s Love Story Magazine and other pulps. A slightly different version of Laurie’s PulpFest appeared on her website on August 19, 2012. Accompanying photographs are © 2012 by Rob Davis, Michael Neno, and David Lee Smith and used with permission.

 

Well, another PulpFest has come and gone. This year’s was at a new venue, the Hyatt Regency in downtown Columbus. New friends were made, old friends reunited, others that had passed on were missed. In the middle of all this, a lot of pulps were bought and sold, including some big deals, and what may have been the world’s record for longest auction was set.

The new hotel was a definite improvement over the one used in past years. The old hotel had its strong points: it was cozy, comfortable and reasonably priced. But the Hyatt, although more expensive, was hands down a better accommodation and definitely gave the con a boost.

I was honored to share a room with Dominique Hopkins (pictured here with Ron Fortier of Airship 27), who came to PulpFest to honor her husband Howard who passed away suddenly last winter. Howard Hopkins was a well-known and highly regarded modern pulp writer who specialized in writing Westerns and horror novels.

I flew into Columbus on Thursday and did not arrive until about 10:30 that night. Needless to say I was tired, but once I got to the hotel and met Dominique, I got my second wind. We decided to take a tour of the hotel and the area where the convention was to take place. The Hyatt is gigantic, almost like a mini city, with several rooms for conferences, the ballroom, a food court, a second floor mezzanine with a bar, and twenty floors of rooms. The layout is a little confusing, but nothing out of the ordinary for such a large convention venue. I really didn’t get the hang of where everything was until Sunday when it was time to leave. Our room was wonderful: we had a beautiful view of Columbus, the beds were comfortable, and the room was fairly quiet.

I was stunned when I saw the ballroom where the dealers had already set up their tables. It was huge, with two-story ceilings and a walkway up above. I couldn’t wait for Friday morning when I could meet everyone in the room when the doors opened at 9 AM .

By Friday morning I was starving, so we hurried down to the breakfast buffet. The hotel’s breakfast prices were a little steep–$17 for a buffet and $12 for a continental breakfast. Needless to say, we decided that this hotel breakfast would be our first and last one.

It was great to see everyone and hard to believe that it had been an entire year since I had seen them. It was just like old times again with Jack and Sally Cullers and their family, Barry Traylor, Ed Hulse, Walker Martin, Randy Vanderbeek, Michelle Nolan, Anthony Tollin, and my table-mate, Will Murray. Even though it had been a year since I’d seen them all, it felt like yesterday.

Friday started off briskly, with a good crowd showing up in the morning and more in the afternoon. Between selling copies of Pulp Writer and Riding the Pulp Trail, I wandered around to visit people and to look for pulps that will help me in my research of Daisy Bacon. Besides buying more issues of Love Story, I also wanted to buy some of the pulps that competed with the Street & Smith magazine: All-Story Love Tales, Sweetheart Stories, Thrilling Love, and the dozens of love pulps that were for sale during the 1930s. I was able to get quite a few from Randy, Art Hackathorn, and Ray Walsh. I also picked up copies of Argosy and Popular. Both had carried love stories in the years before romance pulps became a specialty. Alas, I did not locate what I was really hoping to find: love pulps from the 1920s.

On Friday night, Dominique and I went to the German Village in south Columbus. Both of us had lived in Germany when we were kids and the idea of visiting the German part of town sounded intriguing. It’s a lovely little enclave of colonial homes with flower gardens and cobblestone sidewalks. While we didn’t find a lot of stores that would make me feel as if I was back in Frankfurt in 1968, we did find a fabulous book store with 32 rooms of books.

After getting lost in the Acorn Bookshop, we ventured down to Schmit’s Sausage Haus where we indulged in wonderful, starch-laden dinners of schnitzel and bratwurst. For dessert, Jack Cullers had recommended getting the restaurant specialty, a creampuff about the size of a cantaloupe. It didn’t take much for us to decide to get one, and it actually was the best part of the meal. By the time we left the restaurant at 6:30 PM, the waiting area was so crowded that we had to fight our way out.

I didn’t get to many of the panels this year, so I’ll turn to some of Walker Martin’s comments on the convention’s programming:

The guest of honor was SF author Mike Resnick. In addition to his talk were presentations such as “Barsoom and Beyond,” “J. Allen St. John,” and “Tarzan on Mars.” Saturday night panels were on Robert E. Howard and “The Illustrated Conan,” featuring artists Jim and Ruth Keegan and Mark Schultz. Even Thursday night had interesting presentations such as Rick Lai on the influence of French literature on pulp fiction, Ed Hulse and Garyn Roberts discussing John Campbell and Astounding Stories, Henry Franke on Tarzan in pop culture, and Ed Hulse on Burroughs as a movie producer. John Locke also lectured on the pulp author’s life at Ohio State University.

Mike Chomko introduces Mark Schultz and Ruth & Jim Keegan

One of the programs Saturday afternoon was a tribute to Howard Hopkins and Rick Burton, who both passed away this year. Win Scott Eckert, Ron Hanna, and Ron Fortier gave their recollections of how fine both of these men were and how they touched them in different ways over the years. It was a great tribute to both men and I’m glad I went.

Afterward I joined a few (more like a dozen) others and went across the street for dinner. I don’t remember the name of the restaurant, but it served good food and was reasonable. I also learned that they serve breakfast, which is outstanding, considering the prices at the hotel for breakfast.

Saturday night was jam-packed with events. First off, the Rusty Hevelin Service Award was given to Jack and Sally Cullers for all their hard work over the years and for their generous help to Rusty when he was failing. The Munsey Award was awarded to Matt Moring, owner of Altus Press. I couldn’t have been happier. Not only has Matt published some of the finest collections of pulp reprints ever produced and given a home to my grandfather’s pulp fiction, but he is also one of the nicest, most professional men in the pulp community.

Then there was the auction, all 325 lots. The auction started at 9:30 PM and went until 1:30 AM. A good majority of the lots this year were from the collection of Al Tonik, and many of the lots consisted not of pulps, but fanzines, books about pulps, paperback collections, original ledgers from prominent people like author agent August Lenninger, and more. You certainly couldn’t tell that there was a economic recession in the room: Al’s collection of PEAPS issues (PEAPS stands for the Pulp Era Amateur Press Society) were a prime example. When the bidding started, several hands flew up and the bidding rose from $10 to $600 in about a half minute. PEAPS #1-25 went for around $600; PEAPS #26-50 went for $500. I believe the two later boxes also received high bids. Al’s total collection of PEAPS went for $1450.00.

I noticed that some people in the room were laughing over the prices commanded by these seemingly obscure collections of fanzines. Experienced collectors know that these humble little booklets are packed with lengthy articles that any pulp historian or writer would view as very valuable resources.

Brian Earl Brown, official editor of PEAPS at PulpFest 2012.

Other highlights of the auction included the six volumes of Leonard Robbins’ The Pulp Magazine Index for $600 and a Rafael DeSoto painting recreating one of his Phantom Detective covers for $900. I bailed after the first hundred lots, but only because I couldn’t keep my eyes open. It actually was very entertaining.

PulpFest was all over way too soon. By Sunday afternoon, I was done spending money and had sold all the copies of Pulp Writer and Riding the Pulp Trail that I was going to sell. Even with my complaining over not finding the love pulps I needed (who would have thought that love pulps would be such a hot commodity?), I still managed to collect a substantial pile of issues and had to ship two boxes home. Fortunately, PulpFest arranged to have a UPS agent at the convention hall on Sunday for a couple of hours.

Of the very few gripes I heard, I guess the most common one was that the ballroom had bad lighting, and as like Ed Hulse says in his report: “When you’re inspecting old books and magazines priced at hundreds of dollars, you want all the light you can get.” My personal gripe was that by Sunday the ballroom was as cold as a meat locker, but then that could be a woman thing.

All in all, I’d say that PulpFest 2012 was a rousing success in its new home. Now I just have to wait until my boxes show up to start reading.

Will Murray & Laurie Powers hawking their wares at PulpFest.

**** - Dime Novel Round-Up - ****

2012/11/16

J. Randolph Cox, editor and publisher of Dime Novel Round-Up, offered the following summary of PulpFest 2012 in the October 2012 issue (Whole No. 737) of his excellent journal dedicated to the study of dime and nickel novels, story papers, series books and pulp magazines. The article is © 2012 J. Randolph Cox and used with permission. Accompanying photographs are © 2012 by Nathan Madison, Michael Neno, and David Lee Smith and used with permission.


The fourth annual PulpFest (the successor to Pulpcon) was held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Columbus, Ohio from August 9th to 12th, making it a four-day convention at a new hotel. It was the second year that it was held in conjunction with FarmerCon, the convention that celebrates the life and works of writer Philip José Farmer. While not everything went smoothly, there appear to have been few complaints and people are already looking forward to next year. Overall attendance was not down significantly although the dates coincided with other conventions which prevented some from attending PulpFest.

The Hyatt’s atrium, just below the PulpFest dealers’ room.

Thursday afternoon was devoted to arrivals and dealer set-ups in the larger dealers’ room. John Locke’s presentation “The Gunslinger-Writer,” about the working conditions faced by pulp writers, was not held at the Hyatt Regency, but at nearby Ohio State University. All other presentations were held in the Franklin Room of the hotel. In “The French Connection,” Rick Lai discussed how popular French literature may have influenced American writers, while Ed Hulse and Garyn Roberts saluted the 75th anniversary of John W. Campbell’s arrival at Astounding Science Fiction and the beginning of the Golden Age of Science Fiction in “At the Newsstand with Hulse and Roberts.”

In keeping with the convention theme celebrating 100 years of Edgar Rice Burroughs, Henry Franke, the editor of The Burroughs Bulletin (pictured), discussed the various pop culture incarnations of Tarzan in “Tarzan: A Hero for the Ages.” Next, Ed Hulse offered his insights into the history of ERB’s involvement with the 1934 film serial, The New Adventures of Tarzan, in “Edgar Rice Burroughs, Movie Producer.” The feature film version of the serial was also shown.

On Friday morning at 9 AM, the doors of the dealers’ room were flung open to the delight of all in attendance. Conventioneers quickly moved from table to table in search of pulps, paperbacks, reprint collections, hardcover books and DVDs, to say nothing of the boxes of collectibles underneath the tables. There truly was something for everybody including one of Shadow creator Walter B. Gibson’s typewriters, suitably authenticated. The afternoon program was devoted to readings and signings by writers of “New Pulp.” These “New Fictioneers” included Christopher Paul Carey, Ron Fortier, and William Patrick Maynard. Each had various books to promote, one of which was Maynard’s authorized continuation of the Fu Manchu series, The Destiny of Fu Manchu.

At 6:55 PM, convention chairman Jack Cullers delivered the official welcome to PulpFest 2012. Shortly afterward, the evening programming began with a panel discussing the Burroughs and Verne inspired works of Philip José Farmer and continued with guest of honor Mike Resnick talking about his roots in Edgar Rice Burroughs and how he has succeeded as a professional in the field of science fiction. The rest of the evening was devoted to presentations and panels on Burroughs and some of the writers who were inspired by him to write about Mars–Leigh Brackett, Ray Bradbury, and Otis Adelbert Kline. David Saunders spoke about artist J. Allen St. John, who illustrated much of Burroughs’ fiction. Closing out the night were three films: Bob Clampett’s 1936 animated footage from Warlord of Mars, the United States premier of Last Flight, a short film made in New Zealand and set on Mars, and the French documentary, I, Tarzan, a discussion about Edgar Rice Burroughs’ most famous creation.

Barsoom and Beyond: Friday’s Mars in the Pulps Panel

Saturday began much the same with more wheeling and dealing in the PulpFest dealers’ room. The afternoon program included a panel of new writers inspired by the pulp fiction of the 20th century and readings by Win Scott Eckert of new stories featuring The Green Hornet, The Avenger and the characters of Phil Farmer. Eckert and Wild Cat Books publisher Ron Hanna then led a celebration of the lives and works of creative pulp fans Howard Hopkins and David Barton, both recently deceased.

Saturday’s evening programming began with a brief business meeting that allowed everyone to ask questions and offer suggestions for next year. The 2012 Rusty Hevelin Service Award was presented to Jack and Sally Cullers for their years of devoted service to pulp fans and conventions, while the Munsey Award went to Matt Moring of Altus Press for his creative reprints.

Jim and Ruth Keegan, along with Mark Shultz showed examples of the illustrations for Robert E. Howard’s Conan series and discussed their own Howard-inspired artwork. This was followed by a panel discussing the birth of sword and sorcery in Howard’s fiction.

One of the longest auctions in pulp history began after 9 PM when a portion of collector and pulp historian Al Tonik’s collection went up for bids. This was obviously a working collection and included many reference books and rare pulp fanzines. While many books and materials sold for moderate prices, four groups of issues of the fanzine PEAPS, produced for the Pulp Era Amateur Press Society, sold for amounts in excess of $500 and $600 each. The highest amount paid during the evening was $900 for a painting by artist Rafael DeSoto recreating one of his covers for The Phantom Detective.

Sunday, the final day of the convention, was devoted to wheeling, dealing and packing for the trip home.

Of course buying and selling was not all that pulpsters did over their four days in Columbus. Ample opportunities existed to sample the local cuisine at the city’s restaurants and to visit the Acorn Bookshop where books not seen for decades were found and duly purchased. In fact, some of the reference material used for articles in this issue of Dime Novel Round-Up were acquired on Friday afternoon.

Dealer’s display at PulpFest 2012

**** - PulpFest 2012 - ****

2012/11/16

A new venue, the Hyatt Regency Columbus, was host to PulpFest 2012 from August 9th through August 12th, 2012. A spacious dealers’ room and immaculate accommodations were very much appreciated by the nearly 400 pulp fiction fans in attendance

In the pages following, you’ll be able to read several convention reports from sources such as Dime Novel Round-Up and  Laurie’s Wild West. You’ll also find many of the posts that were released on the convention’s website in the time leading up to the 2012 convention and learn about the wide-ranging and thoughtful programming of the fourth PulpFest, the way the convention was promoted,  our award winners, and much, much more.

If you’d like to hear recordings of some of the panel presentations from PulpFest 2012, please visit Ric Croxton’s podcast about books, comics, movie serials, old-time radio, and TV series, The Book Cave and search for “PulpFest.”

PulpFest 2012 Dealers’ Room. Photo by Michael Haynes.

**** - 2014 Award Nominees - ****

2012/07/14

The Munsey Award is presented annually to an individual who has given of himself or herself for the betterment of the pulp community, be it through disseminating knowledge about the pulps, through publishing, or other efforts to preserve and to foster interest in the pulp magazines we all love and enjoy.

The Rusty Hevelin Service Award, initiated in 2012, is designed to recognize those individuals within the pulp community who have worked long and hard with little thought for individual recognition. It is meant to reward especially good works and is thus reserved for those individuals who are most deserving.

Nominations for our awards are welcome and can be made by anyone. The PulpFest organizing committee wants to thank everyone who participated in the 2014 nomination process. There were fourteen nominating petitions that met the criteria for 2014 Munsey Award. In the interest of manageability, the final ballot was paired down to include eight individuals who had received more than a single nomination. One person was nominated for the 2014 Rusty Hevelin Serice Award, an elite award meant to acknowledge special service to the pulp community.

Congratulations to all of the 2014 Munsey Award nominees:

Brian Earl Brown

SpacemanA resident of Detroit, Michigan, Brian learned about giving back to the pulp community from the late “Big-Hearted” Howard DeVore, the well-known science-fiction collector, book dealer, pulp magazine expert, amateur press association and fanzine writer, convention organizer, and active volunteer in science fiction fandom. Brian is the longtime editor/secretary/treasurer of the Pulp Era Amateur Press Society, now in its 27th year. While others have served in this only official position for PEAPS–including founder Lynn Hickman, Joe Moudry, Curt Phillips, and Joe Sokola–Brian has held this position for over twenty years. As for the value of PEAPS, many mainstays of the pulp community have been members of this amateur press association. Mike Ashley, Mike Chomko, John DeWalt, Doug Ellis, John Gunnison, Ed Hulse, Norm Metcalf, Albert Tonik, and many others have taken part in the organization. Many discussions and discoveries that have first appeared in the PEAPS mailings have later seen formal publication elsewhere. Additionally, Brian’s pulp reprint series, which he has dubbed BEB Books, makes available affordable reprints of scarce pulp era stories.

J. Randolph Cox

For more than 45 years, Randy Cox has conducted research into pulp magazines and dime novels. He served as the editor-publisher of Dime Novel Round-Up for over twenty years. His bibliography, Man of Magic & Mystery: A Guide to the Work of Walter B. Gibson, is an excellent resource for those seeking greater understanding of the work of the man who created The Shadow. With David S. Siegel, Randy authored Flashgun Casey: Crime Photographer, a book-length study of the character originally created for Black Mask by George Harmon Coxe. Other books he has authored include Masters of Mystery and Detective Fiction: An Annotated Bibliography and The Dime Novel Companion: A Source Book. Randy recently donated his collection of comic books and newspaper strips fanzines, pulps, series books, story papers, and other materials to the University of Minnesota Libraries and his extensive collection of Walter Gibson books and Shadow pulps and comics to Gibson’s alma mater, Colgate University.

Stephen Haffner

The “Big Poobah” of Haffner Press, Stephen has been returning the work of several highly regarded pulp fiction writers into print for over a dozen years. Specializing in science fiction and fantasy, Stephen has brought back the early work of Leigh Brackett, Edmond Hamilton, Henry Kuttner, C. L. Moore, Manly Wade Wellman, and especially, Jack Williamson in a series of beautifully designed hardcovers. Currently, he is working to expand into the mystery field with books by Fredric Brown, Howard Brown, Donald Wandrei, and others in process. Ed Gorman wrote the following about Haffner Press books: “They’re among the best made and most handsomely illustrated of all the collectibles I’ve ever seen. These are masterpieces in every way.” Stephen has also been involved in furthering interest in the pulps among both academia and the general public. He has been associated with the annual Williamson Lectureship at Eastern New Mexico University for many years and in 2009 was a co-sponsor with the Kinsman Historical Society of the first Edmond Hamilton Day in the late author’s hometown. Finally, Stephen has been a presenter at a number of pulp conventions.

William Lampkin

Reporter

A freelance writer/editor and publication designer, Bill Lampkin has spent much of his work life in the newspaper field, much like Rambler Murphy (but without the cool nickname and crime-solving). Like many from his generation, Bill discovered the pulps through paperback reprints of Edgar Rice Burroughs, Robert E. Howard, The Shadow, Doc Savage, and The Spider. He bought his first actual pulp in the seventies. Bill runs The Pulp.Net, which he created in 1996, and also writes the Yellowed Perils blog. A resident of Florida, he has designed The Pulpster since 2008, and beginning with its 22nd issue, became editor of the award-winning program book. The first twenty-one issues of the magazine were edited by Tony Davis, winner of the 1999 Lamont Award, who calls Bill: “One of the unsung heroes of contemporary pulp fandom.” In late 2013, Bill also began to design PulpFest‘s print advertisements.

Stephen T. Miller

Steve has been helping to index the pulps for years. Along with Michael Cook, he compiled Garland Publishing’s Mystery, Detective, and Espionage Fiction: A Checklist of Fiction in U. S. Pulp Magazines, 1915-1974, an exceptional resource for collectors of not only detective pulps, but also hero and some adventure magazines. With Phil Stephensen-Payne and William G. Contento, Steve recently revised this classic index, issued on CD-ROM by Locus Press as Crime, Mystery and Gangster Fiction Magazine Index, 1915-2010. Together with Bill Contento, Steve also compiled Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Weird Fiction Magazine Index (1890-2006), a guide to more than 900 different magazines, published on CD-ROM by Locus Press and updated periodically by the publisher. Over the years, Steve has also helped many different people with pulp-related research, sharing his knowledge as well as his collection with them.

Laurie Powers

The granddaughter of pulp author Paul S. Powers, Laurie was introduced to the pulp community in 2007 through the publication of Pulp Writer: Twenty Years in the American Grub Street, an autobiography and appreciation of her grandfather. Later that same year, she started Laurie’s Wild West, an Internet blog site that has become a favorite destination for those interested in the pulps. She has published articles on “Who Read the Pulps?,” female pulp writers, a series of essays put together by various pulp fans entitled “My Favorite Pulps,” and more. Although relatively new to the world of pulps, Laurie has shown tremendous support for the community by spreading the word about pulp fiction and publicizing the conventions that salute our wonderful hobby. She is currently working on a biography of pulp editor Daisy Bacon, editor of Love Story Magazine.

George Vanderburgh

Through his Battered Silicon Dispatch Box, George has published over 600 books, many of them directly related to the pulps. He was largely responsible for finally getting all of Fred Davis’ classic Moon Man stories back into print. And what about his Peter the Brazen series, his five volumes featuring the work of Seabury Quinn, The Compleat Adventures of the Park Avenue Hunt Club, his Green Ghost set, The Compleat Saga of John Solomon, The Adventures of the Golden Amazon, and The Compleat Adventures of the Suicide Squad? He has also given us numerous collections of detective fiction, including volumes featuring the Thinking Machine, Dr. Thorndyke and Martin Hewitt. Looking at his website, his future plans include several books reprinting pulp authors who have been unjustly forgotten. Along with Robert Weinberg, George served as the co-editor of Arkham House until the death of April Derleth. A regular attendee of pulp conventions, George has helped both longtime and new fans to collect the tales of some of the most fantastic heroes from the pulps.

Dan Zimmer

For many years, Dan has been working to promote greater awareness of pulp artists through Illustration Magazine, the magazine he publishes. He has tirelessly contributed his time, expertise and his personal wealth to promote a more respectful awareness of the artistic accomplishments of pulp artists through the publication of the many biographical articles on such artists that have appeared in his magazine, distributed around the globe. Dan’s devotion to classic American illustrators is manifest in the elegant presentation of his magazine and has helped to turn the tide in our culture’s growing appreciation of pulp art. Additionally, he has supported the pulp community by drawing his readers’ attention to various pulp conventions, including the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention, Pulpcon, and PulpFest. Dan has also served as the sponsor of Windy City’s annual pulp art exhibit and created the limited edition print of David Saunder’s Munsey Award painting without cost to the PulpFest organizing committee.

Other Nominees

Also nominated were William G. Contento, indexer and organizer of the online FictionMags Index; Chris Kalb, art designer for a number of pulp reprint publishers, including Age of Aces Books and Murania Press, as well as the designer of the PulpFest website; Richard Meli, the owner of Heartwood Auctions, who “goes above and beyond the call of duty in promoting an upbeat and positive and healthy atmosphere at all of our gatherings;” Phil Stephensen-Payne, a prolific bibliographer and pulp researcher based in the United Kingdom whose Galactic Central website contains an online illustrated checklist of pulp magazines that includes countless front cover scans; Shelby Vick, who serves as co-editor (with Gerald W. Page) of the online magazines Planetary Stories, Pulp Spirit, and Wonderlust; and Howard Wright, editor and publisher of The Bronze Gazette, the long-running Doc Savage fanzine. Again, congratulations to all of the nominees.

We’d also like to congratulate our 2014 Rusty Hevelin Service Award nominee:

J. Barry Traylor

BatgirlRichard Wentworth, AKA The Spider, had his Ram Singh; G-8 turned to Nippy Weston and Bull Martin for help; and Doc Savage had Monk, Ham, and three other geniuses to lend a hand. But who does a pulp con organizer turn to for assistance? None other than J. Barry Traylor! For over twenty-five years, Barry has been organizing convention auctions, almost single-handedly pulling together a couple hundred lots for a Saturday auction. In 2008, Barry quickly mastered the art of digital photography and stunned the convention crowd with his wonderful images of pulps ranging from rarities like Far East Adventure Stories to more common titles such as Amazing Stories. He’s also the person most often performing the “grunt work” that goes into organizing a convention–contacting comic shops and book stores to help with promotion activities; managing the links on the PulpFest website; hunting down extension cords for use in the dealers’ room and programming area; and much more. A longtime contributor to letter columns–you can find his comments in Age of the Unicorn, Echoes, Xenophile, and other classic fanzines–this unsung hero is a devoted fan of Weird Tales. Barry learned about giving back to the pulp community from his pulp mentor, the late Richard Minter, co-winner of the 1993 Lamont Award.

The winner of the 2013 Munsey Award, Garyn G. Roberts, was selected by a panel of judges consisting of all of the living Lamont, Munsey, and Rusty Award winners. Please visit the Past Award Winners page of our website to learn about the previous winners of these three awards. Garyn will be presenting this year’s Munsey Award to our winner on Saturday evening, August 9th, at this year’s PulpFest. If Mr. Traylor is approved for the 2014 Rusty Hevelin Service Award, Jack and Sally Cullers, winners of the 2012 Rusty Award will present the award.

The Munsey Award by David Saunders

For questions about the Munsey Award or the Rusty Hevelin Service Award or to nominate someone for these prestigious awards, please write to Mike Chomko at 2217 W. Fairview St., Allentown, PA 18104-6542 or via email at mike@pulpfest.com. Nominations for the 2015 awards will be accepted through May 31, 2015.

**** - PulpFest 2010 Dealers - ****

2012/01/27

Many thanks to the following exhibitors in our expanded dealers’ room at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Convention Center for making PulpFest 2010, “Summer’s Great Pulp Con,” one of the most memorable pulp conventions of the last 39 years. We hope to see you at this year’s convention.

Adventure House/John Gunnison

John Gunnison will be offering his usual extensive stock of pulp magazines as well as the many pulp reprints and reference works he has published under the Adventure House banner. For more info, please visit John’s website at http://adventurehouse.com/.

Age of Aces/Bill Mann & the Kalb Brothers

Publishers of the best-selling The Spider vs. the Empire State, Bill Mann and Chris and David Kalb will have their line of aviation pulp reprints at PulpFest. From Captain Babyface to The Three Mosquitoes, look to Age of Aces for the best in air war fiction. For more information, please visit Ages of Aces online.

Airship 27/Ron Fortier & Rob Davis

Headed by Ron Fortier and Rob Davis, Airship 27 is a leading producer of new pulp fiction. Starring the classic heroes of yesteryear–from the Green Lama and Sherlock Holmes to Robin Hood and the Masked Rider–you’ll find plenty of thrills by visiting the Hangar 27 website.

Art Hackathorn

A specialist in detective and Western pulps, Art will also have some collectible hardcovers and paperbacks as well as movie and Western magazines. He’ll also be carrying some digests from the mystery and Western genres.

Barry Traylor

Although he won’t have a table at the convention, Barry is the “go-to” guy when it comes to the PulpFest auctions. If you have any questions concerning our auctions, please write to barry@pulpfest.com or visit the “Auctions” page under “Programming.”

Battered Silicon/George Vanderburgh

George has published nearly 500 books, including a wide variety of detective fiction as well as his highly regarded Lost Treasures of the Pulps series. Along with Robert Weinberg, he’s the new editor of Arkham House Publications. His website is at www.batteredbox.com/.

BEB Books/Brian Earl Brown

The editor of the Pulp Era Amateur Press Society hails from Detroit. He’ll be selling his bargain-priced pulp reprints including twenty issues of Secret Agent X and works by Ray Cummings, Francis Stevens, and others. For more information on Brian’s fine line of reprints, please visit BEB Books.

Black Dog Books/Tom Roberts

Tom Roberts and his aide-de-camp, Gene Christie, will be peddling a wide variety of pulp reprints produced under the Black Dog Books banner. From hero pulps to weird menace to thrilling adventure yarns, Black Dog publishes them all. You’ll find more information at Black Dog Books.

Curious Bookshop/Ray Walsh

As usual, Ray will be offering a broad array of paper collectibles–pulps, paperbacks, original artwork, collectible hardcovers, vintage comic books, and more. He’ll be bringing it all from East Lansing, Michigan, home to the Curious Book Shop and Classicon.

Dark Star Books/Gary Diedriech

Located about an hour from Columbus in Yellow Springs, Ohio, Dark Star will be offering a wide range of pulps, particularly Argosy and science fiction. Illustrated hardcovers, collectible paperbacks and digests from a variety of genres will round out their offerings.

Dave Kurzman

Virginia’s Dave Kurzman is one of the country’s leading pulp dealers. He’s known for his large selection of Weird Tales, high-grade pulps, and rare, first-edition hardcovers from Arkham House, Fantasy Press, and other small presses. He trades on ebay as acidgothic.

David Saunders

The creator of the Munsey Award, David is an expert on pulp artists. He will be selling autographed copies of his numerous biographies of pulp artists, including his father, Norman Saunders. Brief biographies on all of his favorite pulp artists are available for free online at www.pulpartists.com.

Dearly Departed Books/Scott Edwards

Scott Edwards of Alliance, Ohio has been an antiquarian bookseller since 1978, specializing in science fiction, mystery, Western and adventure first editions, vintage paperbacks and pulps. He’ll have Argosy, Adventure, Western pulps and more at PulpFest. Visit the Dearly Departed website for more details.

Dennis Harford

A resident of Davenport, Iowa, Dennis has been selling at various pulp conventions for quite a few years. Pay a visit to his table during PulpFest 2010 and you’ll be surprised at what you find. Hopefully, it will be something you’ve been wanting for years.

Doug Ellis and Deb Fulton

Two of the founders of the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention, Doug and Deb will be offering a wide selection of general fiction, science-fiction and other pulps as well as original art and other collectibles. This year, Windy City will be celebrating its 10th anniversary.

Dwight Fuhro

The number-one buyer of top-notch Shadow pulps and collectibles in the world, Dwight will be selling or trading high-grade hero pulps at our convention. He’ll also be on the prowl for original Shadow cover paintings, a nice Shadow #1 and other rare Shadow collectibles. Please visit Dwight’s website for further information.

Girasol Collectables/Neil & Leigh Mechem

Girasol will be selling pulp magazines, their own line of quality pulp replicas, other pulp reprints, paperbacks, books about pulps and other related items. To browse their impressive assortment of offerings, please visit their well-designed website at Girasol Collectables.

Ed Hulse

In addition to his award-winning fanzine Blood ‘n’ Thunder, Ed will be displaying the indispensable Blood ‘n’ Thunder Guide to Collecting Pulps, The Best of Blood ‘n’ Thunder, and a selection of highly collectible pulps, paperbacks, hardcovers, and fanzines.

Haffner Press/Stephen Haffner

Stephen Haffner will be offering his handsomely illustrated hardbound volumes featuring the work of Leigh Brackett, Edmond Hamilton, Henry Kuttner, C. L. Moore, and Jack Williamson. Visit haffnerpress.com to vote for the topic of Stephen’s annual PulpFest presentation.

Hooked on Books/Wayne and Deb Keil

Selling books since 1975, the Keils are familiar faces at book and paper conventions throughout the Midwest. Specializing in vintage mystery and science fiction, their inventory includes collectible paperbacks, digests, magazines, pulps, and some hardcovers. For further information, please visit Hooked on Books.

Jack Cullers

If you’re looking for pulps and out-of-print paperbacks, pulp reprints or hardbound fiction and non-fiction, find your way to Jack’s table. He always has a wide variety of such material. You just may come across something you’ve been questing after for years.

Jerry Schattenburg

This  knowledgeable and respected dealer and collector from the Kansas City area sells pulps from a wide range of genres. At PulpFest, he’ll also have offerings of science-fiction and fantasy first editions, original art, and more.

Jim and Walter Albert

These collector brothers from Arkansas and Pennsylvania will have pulps, paperbacks, hardcovers, and fanzines that will be pleasing to just about everyone who will be attending PulpFest 2010

John Hauser Pulps & Comics

From beautiful Milwaukee, Wisconsin, John will be bringing an assortment of science fiction pulps and digests, collectible hardcovers and paperbacks, as well as vintage comic books and perhaps some artworka little bit of everything. He deals on ebay as jmhcomics.

John McMahan

John hails from Oklahoma where he has long been active as a fan and dealer. At PulpFest 2010, John will be selling pulps, books, comics, original art, movie posters, and more. He trades on ebay as mybckpages.

Jon Wehler

This personable dealer and collector offers pulps, original art, and other paper collectibles. He’ll also have lots of vintage paperbacks from many different genres. Based in Ohio, he exhibits at a variety of book and paper shows throughout the Midwest.

Josh Petrie

New Jersey’s Josh Petrie always puts together a terrific display. At this year’s PulpFest, he’ll be offering pulps from all genres as well as science fiction paperbacks, pulp and radio premiums, vintage comic books, and pulp and comic fanzines.

Keith Dilbone

If you’re looking for vintage paperbacks, be sure to stop by Keith’s tables. He’ll be selling Ace, Bantam, Dell, Gold Medal, Pyramid, Signet and many other publishers, both keys and commons. He’ll also be looking for foreign science fiction, fantasy and horror paperbacks to buy or trade.

Main Street Music/David L. Schmidt

From Waterloo, IL, David and his daughter Zoe will be bringing pulps and digests, collectible paperbacks, original artwork, Arkham House books, vintage comics, and ephemera. Visit Main Street Music for more details.

Mark Halegua

In addition to selling a selection of pulp magazines, Mark offers CDs featuring thousands of pulp cover images through Pulps 1st, Mark is also the organizer of the Gotham Pulp Collectors Club, a group of pulp fans that meets monthly in New York City.

Mark Hickman

This Ohio dealer will have pulps, including a variety of science fiction magazines and hero pulps, as well as comics and original artwork from pulps, comics, digests, and paperbacks–a little bit of everything. 

Martin Grams, Jr.

A widely published old time radio and television expert, Martin carries a wide selection of classic DVDs, along with books and magazines. He’ll also have copies of his newest book for sale–The Green Hornet–as well as his award-winning study of Rod Serling’s The Twilight Zone.

Midway Books/Tom Stransky & Bob Jackson

Tom and Bob will be bringing their pulps, vintage paperbacks, collectible science fiction and fantasy hardcovers, Golden Age comic books, and original illustration art from St. Paul, Minnesota. For a preview of their stock, please pay a visit to the Midway Books website.

Mike Chomko

Mike is known as the “one-stop seller for your pulp reprint and reference needs.” At PulpFest 2010, he’ll have his usual wide selection of such material. Please visit the Mike Chomko, Books website to download a copy of his latest catalog of pulp-related books.

Modern Age Books/Jeff Canja

A longtime mail-order bookseller from East Lansing, Michigan and the author of Popular Fiction Periodicals and Collectable Paperback Books, Jeff will be selling vintage paperbacks, pulps, adventure magazines, and related items from his table at PulpFest.

Nick Certo

A dealer since 1987, Nick always manages to unearth lots of rare and desirable items. A resident of New York, he brings choice selections of pulps and related items to the conventions at which he exhibits. Please visit his AbeBooks.com website.

Off-Trail Publications/John Locke

California’s John Locke will be bringing his offbeat sense of humor to PulpFest along with a wide variety of excellent and often rare pulp reprints that generally include extensive original research into pulp history, all published under the Off-Trail Publications imprint.

Paul Herman

This Connecticut-based dealer and collector exhibits regularly at pulp and paperback conventions. He offers a wide variety of material including pulps, paperbacks, vintage digests, and magazines and is particularly strong in the mystery and detective fields, turning up many scarce items in these genres.

Peter Chapman

A Virginia collector, Peter plans to offer a wide array of vintage material including pulps, old magazines, Golden Age comics, original art, and movie-related material. He’ll also be offering some of his space memorabilia such as Flash Gordon and Buck Rogers collectibles.

Phil Nelson

This personable dealer from Waverly, Ohio will be armed with a wide variety of pulps, from Argosy and Detective Fiction Weekly to Doc Savage and Amazing Stories. He’ll also have paperbacks, comics and other items. He’s a fan of North-West Stories and Top-Notch.

R & B Enterprises/Brendan Faulkner

Located in Danbury, Connecticut, R & B Enterprises has been in the popular culture business for over twenty years. They’ll have a wide selection of pulps, vintage magazines, movie and television classics, paperbacks, digests, and movie-related material.

Randy Vanderbeek

A pulp collector for nearly 40 years, Randy is from Kalamazoo, Michigan. He’ll be bringing hundreds of pulp magazines from all genres for sale or trade. The more he sells, the more he’ll be able to buy from the many fine dealers who will be attending PulpFest 2010.

Reel Art/Cory Glaberson

Chicago’s Cory Glaberson of Reel Art, the Midwest’s premier pop culture dealer, will be offering pulps, movie memorabilia, autographs, DVDs of movie and television classics, and pulp art prints. Please visit the Reel Art website for more details. 

Richard Clear

Winner of the Lamont Award and the author of Old Magazines: Identification and Value Guide and other texts, Richard will be offering a wide variety of pulps, slick magazines, hardcovers, paperbacks, and original artwork. He has been a book dealer for nearly forty years.

Rick Hall

Scouring flea markets and antique shows up and down the East Coast, Rick rescues pulps for the collections of his fellows in the pulp community. From Ace Detective to Zoom and everything in between, you may find a great deal amongst Rick’s “found” pulps. This raconteur hails from Connecticut.

Sanctum Books/Anthony Tollin

Tony will be selling all of his fine pulp reprints–The Avenger, Doc Savage, The Shadow, and The Whisperer–four of the great pulp heroes. He’ll also have artwork by George and Jerome Rozen and Bob Powell for sale. Please visit the Sanctum Books website.

Scott Hartshorn

This outgoing, Florida-based collector and dealer has wide-ranging interests, demonstrated by the selection of material he offers for sale. Pulps, vintage paperbacks, collectible hardcovers, original artwork—Scott has something to suit every taste.

Steven Spilger

Steven will be selling pulps, science fiction and fantasy hardcovers, comics, and several original works by Norman Saunders at PulpFest 2010. A new dealer at our convention, Steven will be traveling from South Bend, Indiana. We’ll be looking forward to welcoming him to PulpFest

Thomas Martin

Coming from western Ohio, Tom will be selling detective, hero, and science fiction pulps; an extensive selection of crime digests such as Guilty and Trapped; and a wide assortment of collectible paperbacks, pulp reprints, and pulp- and film-related hardcovers and magazines.

Tim’s Books/Tim Paxson

Tim Paxton of Grand Rapids, Michigan specializes in paperbacks and small press, first edition hardcovers, dealing mainly in high-grade science fiction, fantasy and horror as well as mysteries and pulp-related material. Check out the Tim’s Books website at AbeBooks.com.

Tom Skemp

Specializing in horror and science fiction, this will be Tom’s first trip to PulpFest as a dealer. A resident of Latrobe, Pennsylvania, Tom will be selling collectible hardcovers and several hundred paperbacks as well as some limited and British editions.

Walker Martin

A prominent collector whose activity dates back to the early days of pulp fandom, Walker has owned practically everything at least once. A resident of New Jersey, he’ll be selling pulps, original artwork, and one-of-a-kind canceled checks from the files of Munsey and Popular Publications to the writers of the pulp era.

Wild Cat Books/Ron Hanna

The publisher of cutting-edge fiction in the tradition of the bloody pulps, Ron offers everything from science fiction and fantasy to hero pulp and jungle adventure under the Wild Cat Books imprint. He’ll also have pulps, paperbacks, comics, monster magazines, and more.

Yammering Magpie/Peter & Pam Marchionna

Classic film dealers from the Chicago area offering some of the best and rarest movies from the silent era, pre-code, film noir, Westerns, and cult movies. Visit their tables at PulpFest for a taste of classic cinema.

 

**** - 2010 Munsey Nominees - ****

2012/01/27

There were sixteen nominating petitions for the 2010 Munsey Award that met the criteria for the award. Many thanks from the PulpFest organizing committee to all who participated in the nominating process.

The nominee ballot was forwarded to the past winners of the Munsey and Lamont Awards who then selected the person to be honored. The 2010 Munsey Award was presented during Saturday evening’s programming on July 31st.

Congratulations to all the nominees for the 2010 Munsey.

Anthony Tollin

It was Tony Tollin who had the fortitude to convince Conde Nast to license authorized reprints of Doc Savage, The Shadow, The Avenger, and The Whisperer. Tony’s regularly issued Sanctum Books are some of the most popular reprints in the field today. Practically every month, we can enjoy a double dose of some of the pulp era’s greatest heroes, coupled with informative articles about the authors, the sources for the stories and the pop culture that they inspired. These books continue to serve as a major gateway for new people to enter the pulp-collecting hobby. Additionally, Tony was the co-author with Walter Gibson of The Shadow Scrapbook and helped to put together and introduce numerous recorded collections of pulp-related radio programs during his association with Radio Spirits. He was also involved with several comic book interpretations of the great pulp heroes.

Chris Kalb

A graphic and web designer by trade, Chris’ Internet work and many publishing ventures have helped to attract people who are being exposed to pulps for the first time. There isn’t anyone out there making better use of all the new technology while still preserving the “oldness” of pulps and popular culture. He has become the person to go to for publishers who want a retro-design for their books or website. His work for Age of Aces Books, the newly redesigned Blood ‘n’ Thunder, his own The Spider Returns, The 86th Floor, and G-8 and His Battle Aces websites and, of course, the PulpFest website are all proof of his devotion to the pulps and his mastery of melding the past with the present.

Dan Zimmer

For nearly ten years, Dan has been working to promote greater awareness of pulp artists by producing and distributing Illustration Magazine. He has tirelessly contributed his time, expertise and his personal wealth to promote a more respectful awareness of the artistic accomplishments of pulp artists through the deluxe publication of the many biographical articles on pulp artists that have appeared in his magazine, distributed around the globe. He has done this despite the overwhelming fact that his creative vision is far beyond receiving any reasonable economic return for his efforts. Dan’s devotion to classic American illustrators is manifest in the elegant presentation of his magazine and has helped to turn the tide in our culture’s growing appreciation of pulp art. Additionally, he has supported the pulp community by drawing his readers’ attention to various pulp conventions, including the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention, Pulpcon, and PulpFest. Dan has also served as the sponsor of Windy City’s annual pulp art exhibit and created the limited edition print of David Saunder’s Munsey Award painting without cost to the PulpFest organizing committee.

Don Herron

For decades, Don has been a major force in research about the lives and works of Dashiell Hammett, Robert E. Howard, Charles Willeford, Philip K. Dick, Clark Ashton Smith, and other pulp writers, as well as promoting their works to wider audiences. In 1977, Don created the Dashiell Hammett Tour and has led it in San Francisco ever since. It is the longest-running literary tour in the world. His Hammett tour has been covered regularly by the media, and Don has appeared on radio and television in America, Great Britain, Japan, and Germany. Don has been a frequent contributor to The Cimmerian, one of the leading periodicals devoted to Robert E. Howard and his works, in addition to editing books about the author. Don has also been an important contributor to the Howard Days conferences in Texas and has earned several awards for his work on Howard. He has written or edited numerous pulp-related books including The Dark Barbarian: The Writings of Robert E. Howard (1984), the five-volume Selected Letters of Philip K. Dick (1991-1997), The Barbaric Triumph: A Critical Anthology on the Writings of Robert E. Howard (2004), The Dashiell Hammett Tour: Thirtieth Anniversary Guidebook (2009), and others.

Garyn Roberts

Professor Roberts is the Chair of the Communications/English Discipline at Northwestern Michigan College. He is also an unabashed fan of the pulps. Garyn has written extensively about the pulps, both professionally and as a fan. He has edited or co-edited some of the best collections from the pulps including A Cent a Story: The Best from Ten Detective Aces, More Tales of the Defective Detective in the Pulps, The Compleat Adventures of the Moon Man, The Magical Mysteries of the Green Ghost and The Compleat Great Merlini. His insightful essays in these books and elsewhere have led to a greater understanding of the pulps both inside and outside of the pulp community. His collection, The Prentice Hall Anthology of Science Fiction and Fantasy, a college level textbook, is notable for the attention paid to the pulp magazines. Additionally, Garyn has helped other researchers with various pulp-related projects and is a regular attendee of pulp conventions.

Gene Christie

A researcher of fantasy, science fiction, mystery and adventure fiction for over twenty years, Gene has extensively studied and indexed the magazines of the pulp era, especially those published by the Frank A. Munsey Company. Never too busy or tired to help, Gene has volunteered his time, knowledge and editorial abilities, contributing to projects published by Adventure House, Off-Trail Publications, Battered Silicon Dispatch Box, and others. He annually volunteers at the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention, in addition to proofing their program book, and has been a long-time attendee at other pulp-related conventions. In conjunction with Black Dog Books, he has compiled and edited a number of rare and previously unreprinted works, including Cornell Woolrich’s The Good Die Young, George Allan England’s The Empire in the Air, Seabury Quinn’s Demons of the Night, Murray Leinster’s The Silver Menace, The Space Annihilator, and several forthcoming collections. He also serves as series editor for Black Dog Books’ multi-volume Talbot Mundy Library.

George Vanderburgh

Through his Battered Silicon Dispatch Box, George has published nearly 400 books, many of them directly related to the pulps. He was largely responsible for finally getting all of Fred Davis’ classic Moon Man stories back into print. And what about his Peter the Brazen series, his five volumes featuring the work of Seabury Quinn, The Compleat Adventures of the Park Avenue Hunt Club, his Green Ghost set, The Compleat Saga of John Solomon, and the just completed The Adventures of the Golden Amazon? He has also given us numerous collections of detective fiction, including volumes featuring the Thinking Machine, Dr. Thorndyke and Martin Hewitt. Looking at his website, his future plans include several books reprinting pulp authors who have been unjustly forgotten. Along with Robert Weinberg, George was recently named the co-editor of Arkham House Books. A regular attendee of pulp conventions, George has helped both longtime and new fans to collect the tales of some of the most fantastic heroes from the pulps.

Howard Wright

Howard has been publishing the Doc Savage fan magazine The Bronze Gazette for nearly twenty years. He created the Gazette when there was no real Internet and very little information readily available about Lester Dent’s “Man of Bronze.” His main reason for starting the publication was to gather information about Doc Savage, disseminate this news to the “Fans of Bronze,” and keep Doc fans going during the “lean” years when Doc was, for the most part, a mere memory. Through Howard’s efforts, interest in Doc was maintained and his return to the limelight assured.

John DeWalt

For years, John has selflessly aided researchers, sharing his collection and knowledge. He is a joy with whom to share his, and our, joy of pulps. He has quietly helped many people, sharing stories and his experience with no thought of anything in return. He is quiet about his generosity, never thinking to remark on it. His self-published Key to Other Doors: Some Lists from a Pulp Collector’s Notebook, is still an excellent source of information about pulp fanzines, pulp reprints, pulp conventions and the single-character pulps.

Laurie Powers

The granddaughter of pulp author Paul S. Powers, Laurie was introduced to the pulp community in 2007 through the publication of Pulp Writer: Twenty Years in the American Grub Street, an autobiography and appreciation of her grandfather. Later that same year, she started Laurie’s Wild West, an Internet blog site that has become a favorite destination for those interested in the pulps. She has published articles on pulp memoirs, “Who Read the Pulps?,” collectors’ guides to the pulps, holiday pulp covers, and, most recently, a series of articles put together by various pulp fans entitled “My Favorite Pulps.” Although relatively new to the world of pulps, Laurie has shown tremendous support for the community by spreading the word about pulp fiction and publicizing the conventions that salute our wonderful hobby.

Mike Chomko (2010 winner)

Mike has been involved in the pulp hobby for over twenty years, writing his first article for Echoes in the late eighties. After Bob Sampson’s passing, Mike continued the indexing of both Echoes and The Pulp Collector. In 1995, he launched the pulp fanzine Purple Prose. Running for seventeen issues, Purple Prose published biographical sketches of early pulp readers such as Richard Minter, Nick Carr, and George Evans, a lengthy study of Fiction House’s Wings, a biography of pulp artist John Howitt, and much more. Perhaps the highlight of the run was the publication of “The Steeger Papers,” a draft pulp history penned by Popular Publications’ Harry Steeger and annotated by Mike. He has also volunteered at various pulp conventions over the years and is one of the leading distributors of pulp-related publications. With Jack Cullers, Ed Hulse, and Barry Traylor, Mike helped to organize the first PulpFest in 2009.

Mike Taylor

A Burroughs and science fiction fan and intermittent pulp collector since the 1950s, Mike has been puttering around with writing since the late seventies. He sold his first mystery short story in 1978 and wrote various pieces in that genre, including ghosting for the Mike Shayne series and for several pulp-related novelettes set in the 1930s. Mike returned to writing about the pulps in the late 1990s when he began reviewing a variety of pulp magazines for Camille Cazedessus’ Pulpdom. Over the last twelve years, he has described selections from nearly every pre-1930 general fiction pulp line published, including Argosy, All-Story, Cavalier, Popular, and other titles. His many articles have appeared in the fanzine Pulpdom, which celebrated its fiftieth anniversary in May 2010.

Ron Fortier

Ron, a professional writer for over twenty-five years, and illustrator Rob Davis started Airship 27 Productions to create a home for new, pulp-inspired fiction. Since 2007, Airship 27 has revived long moribund pulp characters such as the Green Lama, Jimmy Anthony, the Masked Rider, Secret Agent X, and Fortier’s own version of Ace Periodicals’ Captain Hazzard. Ron’s books have inspired contemporary writers and artists to turn out new adventures featuring many of the characters long remembered by the pulp community. They have also served as ports of entry for new people to become involved with the world of pulps. In 2009, Ron helped develop the Pulp Factory Awards, inaugurated to support, applaud, and encourage the creation of new pulp fiction and art. The first PFAs were awarded at the 2010 Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention.

Ron Hanna

For much of the last decade Ron, through his Wild Cat Books operation, has been doing a fantastic job of maintaining interest in the great pulps, making them both available and affordable to old and new fans alike. Beginning with his fanzine Lost Sanctum, Ron has published material by both new and old writers and artists, all of them with a great love for the pulps. A few years ago, he took his love of pulps to the next level and began presenting brand new pulp fiction and art by some of today’s finest creators. Most recently, he has revived the classic science-fiction magazine, Startling Stories. Ron doesn’t get rich doing any of this. No, his efforts come from his heart and his genuine love for the pulps.

Stephen T. Miller

Steve has been helping to index the pulps for years. Along with Michael Cook, he compiled Garland Publishing’s Mystery, Detective, and Espionage Fiction: A Checklist of Fiction in U. S. Pulp Magazines, 1915-1974, an exceptionally useful resource for collectors of not only detective pulps, but also hero and some adventure magazines. With Bill Contento, Steve compiled Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Weird Fiction Magazine Index (1890-2006), a guide to more than 900 different magazines, published on CD-ROM by Locus Press and updated periodically by the publisher. Over the years, Steve has also helped many different people with pulp-related research, sharing his knowledge as well as his collection with them.

William Contento

Probably best known for the Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Weird Fiction Magazine Index (1890-2006) that he compiled with Steve Miller, Bill has assembled other works that have become essential tools of reference. These include his Index to Science Fiction Anthologies and Collections, Index to Crime and Mystery Anthologies (with Martin H. Greenberg), and The Supernatural Index (with Mike Ashley). In the last ten years, he has built up the online FictionMags Index into a research juggernaut. It currently lists the contents of over 44,000 issues of almost 3000 different magazine titles. Pulps are heavily represented, of course, but pulp writers turn up in other magazines, too, and the FictionMags Index allows them to be discovered. A huge endeavor, the FictionMags Index has been a tremendous boon to pulp-magazine research.

To learn more about PulpFest‘s annual service award, please visit The Rusty page of our website.

**** - PulpFest 2009 Blogroll - ****

2012/01/27

Below is a behind-the-scenes look at the creation of PulpFest 2009, told through the posts that originally appeared on the convention’s home page during 2008 and 2009. They began in November, just a few weeks after Mike Chomko, Jack Cullers, Ed Hulse, Chris Kalb, and Barry Traylor joined together to create a vibrant and proactive summer pulp convention.


Here’s the first post to ever appear on the PulpFest website. Dated November 6, 2008, it announced our plans for the 2009 convention. 

Announcing PulpFest 2009!

Pulpfest 2009, a new and improved version of the venerable convention catering to fans and collectors of vintage popular fiction, will be held from Friday, July 31st, through Sunday, August 2nd, at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio.

Sellers of pulp magazines, all-fiction digests, dime novels, and other collectible books and periodicals are already lining up for exhibit space, and the convention will be advertised and promoted extensively to capture the attention of new hobbyists as well as veteran attendees. Preliminary flyers carrying basic information are being distributed at various collectibles shows this fall, beginning with Bouchercon, the annual gathering for collectors of mystery fiction. The Pulpfest 2009 committee has already contacted several publications to inquire about advertising the convention, and additional flyers will be designed and distributed throughout the year.

Additionally, the Pulpfest 2009 website is now operational and can be found at www.pulpfest.com. In the weeks and months to come, it will be updated regularly to provide new information on guests and programming as soon as it becomes available.

Dealers interested in helping promote Pulpfest 2009 can download and print out either of two flyers already available on the website in PDF form. These can be distributed at collectibles shows and sent with mail-order shipments. 

Following an extensive search for the best available venue, the Pulpfest 2009 committee chose the Ramada Plaza for its spacious accommodations, numerous amenities, ease of access, and competitive pricing. The committee has negotiated a guest-room rate of $84 plus tax per night, significantly less than that offered by other pulp conventions.

The Convention Center’s main room boasts more than 10,000 square feet of space and will accommodate up to 80 eight-foot tables. A separate room on the same floor will be set up theater-style for our evening programming. A con suite will be open for after-hours conversation and conviviality. 

Located just off Exit 116 of Interstate 71, the Ramada Plaza is only 20 minutes from Columbus International Airport and 10 minutes from downtown Columbus, making our convention site easily accessible to attendees whether they’re driving or flying. 

The Ramada offers complementary transportation via shuttle to and from the airport, downtown Columbus, and various other locations (including restaurants) within a five-mile radius of the hotel.

The newly renovated hotel additionally offers all the usual amenities. High-speed wireless Internet access is now available in the main lobby, convention center, and guest rooms. Guests can avail themselves of a whirlpool, an exercise room, and both indoor and outdoor pools, as well as a full-service business center. Parking is free for hotel guests and single-day convention attendees.

The Ramada’s spacious restaurant, Justin’s Place, serves traditional American cuisine and is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner seven days a week. The hotel’s cozy lounge, Bowties, is open until two a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights.

The Ramada Plaza is an extremely popular venue for conventions of our type and size. For 15 years now it has hosted Cinevent, an annual confab of vintage-film fans and collectors of movie memorabilia. Hotel management is both committed to and experienced in providing the courteous, comprehensive service that produces satisfied conventioneers.

Pricing schedules for dealer tables and registrations will be forthcoming shortly. Information on guests and programming will be posted on the Pulpfest 2009 website as soon as it is confirmed.


Less than two weeks (11/21/08) after our initial post to the PulpFest website, the convention was in business, accepting registrations from pulp dealers located throughout North America. A year later, PulpFest 2010 still maintains the same rates and rules. Why toy with success? 

Dealer Registration Open

We just uploaded a Dealers Registration Form (PDF format), so registration for PulpFest 2009 is officially OPEN!

Dealer tables rates are as follows: island tables will cost $70; wall tables will cost $80. Both rates include a ten-dollar surcharge that will be used for promotional activities. Wall tables will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis.

There will be no height restrictions on island tables. Bookcases will be allowed on these tables as long as they can stand safely. A common sense approach is urged in designing your displays. If you have any special needs-electrical outlets, requests to be positioned near certain dealers, and so on-let us know in the space below.

Please send your check or money order to David J. Cullers, 1272 Cheatham Way, Bellbrook, OH 45305. Jack will also accept non-credit card payments made through Paypal at his email address below. If you have any questions, write to Jack at his mail address. He can also be reached via email at jack@pulpfest.com.

And remember, you can always find the most current registration info on our Registration page.


On November 21, 2008, the PulpFest Organizing Committee expressed its thanks to web designer Chris Kalb. At that time, the PulpFest website was operational, but still very much under construction. Thanks to Chris’ beautiful design, the PulpFest website is easy to work with and has been sited as an example of a well-constructed and organized Internet site by a variety of web design organizations.

Chris Kalb’s Best Site Yet?

We think it goes without saying that PulpFest, the summer’s leading pulp convention, is greatly indebted to Chris Kalb for putting together such a wonderful website. So thank you so much for your tremendous work from Barry, Ed, Jack, and Mike.


By early December, the PulpFest website was humming. It continues to evolve and remains a “joy to work with” to this very day. And don’t forget, you can still sign up for the PulpFest email list by using the very simple method as described below. The following post was dated December 5, 2008.

PulpFest.com Fully Operational!

If you’re here, you know that the PulpFest 2009 website is now up and running! And it’s certainly a joy to behold!

For any and all information concerning Summer’s premiere event for collectors of vintage pulp magazines and related material, simply bookmark this page or commit the address www.pulpfest.com to memory. In addition to all the basic information, you’ll find a downloadable registration form, links to sites managed by our host hotel and local Columbus institutions, a list of dealers (which is already substantial, even with the convention more than seven months away), capsule bios and contact info for PulpFest committee members, and other items of interest including links to our dealers, pulp-related publishers and other great sites.

The PulpFest website boasts an eye-catching design and is easy to navigate. Simply click the buttons along the left side of each page and you’re in business. The site will be updated regularly over the weeks and months to come—not only with additional facts about the show, but also with fun stuff that every pulp fan will enjoy. And if you’d like to make a comment, just click on the word “comment” wherever it may be and start typing.

You can also sign up for the PulpFest 2009 email list by entering your name and email address in the box on our home page. Click the “join” button and watch for your confirmation email to finalize your subscription.

Visit early and often for all the news about what promises to be 2009’s most noteworthy gathering of people who read, research and collect pulp magazines and other forms of vintage American popular fiction.


With the holiday season behind us, it was time for the PulpFest committee to get back to work. On January 17, 2009, Ed Hulse posted a message about people’s travel plans for the Summer months. 2009 turned out to be a great year for travelers, with air fares at historic lows. It’s never to early to make your plans for PulpFest.

Make Your PulpFest Plans Early!

With 2008 receding into memory and the holiday season finally over, the PulpFest committee is back at work, planning and promoting this summer’s top convention for fans and collectors of pulp magazines and other forms of vintage popular fiction.

We’ll be updating this site regularly between now and the end of July, when PulpFest finally gets underway. Make sure you check back every few weeks for information on our programming, updates to our steadily growing list of dealers, and additional tidbits relating not only to the convention but also to our hobby in general.

We realize that, for some of you, it probably seems way too early to start planning a summer excursion. If so, you might want to reconsider: our host hotel, the Ramada Plaza, has already received numerous room reservations from PulpFest attendees—and we expect that number to increase sharply in the weeks and months ahead. Mind you, we’ve had the Ramada set aside a block of rooms that should be more than adequate for our needs. But then, we didn’t expect our people to start reserving rooms before Christmas, as a few of you did.

Our advice is this: if you’re thinking about attending PulpFest—or even if you’re only thinking about thinking about attending PulpFest—reserve your room at the Ramada Plaza some time in the next month or so. Remember, if financial conditions or an emergency of some kind ultimately prevent you from joining us, you can cancel your reservation up to 24 hours before your scheduled arrival without incurring any charge. But if you wait to the last minute to make your reservation, you risk getting shut out. Like we said, that’s probably not going to happen, because the Ramada hosts bigger conventions than ours. But why take the chance when it doesn’t cost you anything but the price of a phone call to make your reservation? Just remember to make sure you mention PulpFest to get our special rate.

At this time we’d also encourage you to check into airfares. Many if not most airlines won’t let you book flights more than six months out, and as of this writing PulpFest is still slightly more than six months in the future. But we’ve noticed that airfares have come down in recent weeks and may well drop further as demand continues to soften. Why not lock in your fare this winter, rather than wait until the peak months of spring or summer, when demand goes up and prices begin to rebound? You’ve still got a couple months, but it might be a good idea to make some inquiries and perhaps monitor ticket prices regularly from the various airline websites. Besides, there’s no way of knowing how long oil prices will remain depressed.

We chose PulpFest’s host city with air travel in mind. Columbus is a “hub” for many domestic airlines and can easily be reached from anywhere in the country. To take one example: Southwest Airlines, which is noted for its highly competitive pricing and good customer service, offers regular flights to Columbus from more than 50 major metropolitan areas. It offers non-stop flights to Columbus from Philadelphia, Chicago, Baltimore, Washington DC, Nashville, Orlando, St. Louis, Phoenix, and Las Vegas, among other cities. Chances are you’ll be able to get a pretty good deal from Southwest if you don’t wait too long to book your flight. And given the economy’s current state, we wouldn’t be at all surprised to see some major price wars between the airlines over the coming weeks and months.

While you’re thinking about lodging and travel options, we’ll be hard at work coming up with convention programming and arranging for advertising. As promised, we plan on promoting PulpFest as aggressively as time and money allows, not only appealing to the known community of pulp fans but also reaching out to collector constituencies with related interests. We remain firmly committed to bringing new people into the hobby.

We’ll close by reiterating that PulpFest is your convention. We’re interested in your suggestions and will give them careful consideration. We’ve gotten many great ideas already and want to thank those of you who’ve written us. Your input has been very helpful.

Don’t forget to check back in a few weeks for more PulpFest news!


We not only live in a golden age of pulp reprints, we also live in a golden age of electronics. We can even send money to another person or organization with a few clicks of our mice and keyboards. On January 17, 2009 we posted the news that PulpFest could accept payments made through Paypal, an Internet site that allows its members to send money to each other.

PulpFest Now Accepts Paypal!

We’re now accepting PayPal payments for PulpFest table rentals and registrations. It couldn’t be easier; you’ll find all the information on our Registration page. You’re just a couple mouse-clicks away from paying your PulpFest charges. Of course, you’ll still have to fill out the registration forms, but we’re making it easier to pay without the hassle of writing out and sending checks or money orders via snail-mail. Visit our Paypal page and sign up today!


Every notable convention needs an award. For many years, the pulp community had offered a service award named The Lamont. Feeling that name was too tied to a single aspect of the pulp industry–the hero pulps–PulpFest decided to create a more encompassing award. Teaming with talented artist David Saunders, the PulpFest committee came up with an award that covered all of the pulps–the Munsey Award, named for the man who created the pulp magazine. The new award was announced on the last day of January 2009.

Remember, anyone can nominate just about anyone who is involved in the world of pulps for the Munsey Award. Please visit Munsey page for our nominating guidelines.  

The Munsey Award Arrives!

David Saunders, the son of the legendary pulp artist Norman Saunders, has created a sensational, limited-edition print, one copy of which will be annually offered as the Munsey Award at PulpFest, beginning in 2009. David’s work is a refreshing homage to classic pulp art that honors the entire pulp community and their common love of the purple prose of the bloody pulps. We are sure that Norman Saunders would be proud of his son’s wonderful painting. Dan Zimmer of the Illustrated Press has produced a deluxe, limited edition of thirty-six numbered and signed prints. The PulpFest Committee is indebted to both David and Dan for their generous support of our convention.

A New York artist whose work can be found in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, The New Museum and at other museums and in public buildings throughout the United States and other countries, David Saunders has taught art at Yale, Oberlin and many other colleges worldwide, including schools in Paris, London and Tokyo. An expert on pulp art, he has been a guest speaker on the subject, including The Pulp Art Show held at the Brooklyn Museum in 2003, and has served as the guest of honor at various pulp conventions. David has written biographical articles on pulp artists J. W. Scott, Frederick Blakeslee, Rudolph Belarski, Rafael DeSoto, Ernest Chiriacka, Allen Anderson, and his father. He is also the author of Norman Saunders, a biography and appreciation of the great pulp artist that was released in January 2009 by the Illustrated Press.

The Munsey Award is named after Frank A. Munsey, the man who published the first all-fiction pulp magazine. It will be presented annually to a deserving person who has given of himself or herself for the betterment of the pulp community, be it through disseminating knowledge about the pulps, publishing or through other efforts to preserve and to foster interest in the pulp magazines we all love and enjoy.

If you have someone in mind that you feel worthy to receive the first Munsey Award, please let us know. Send the person’s name and a brief paragraph describing why you feel that person should be honored to Mike Chomko, 2217 W. Fairview Street, Allentown, PA 18104-6542 or to mike@pulpfest.com. PulpFest 2009 committee members are not eligible for this year’s award. The deadline for nominations is April 30, 2009. The recipient of the Munsey Award will be selected by a panel of judges consisting of recognized experts in the field of pulp literature. The award will be presented on Sunday, August 2 at a special breakfast at the Ramada Plaza in Columbus, Ohio. Tom Roberts, the 2008 winner of the Lamont Award, will be the presenter of the first Munsey Award.


What’s a convention without a Guest of Honor? In selecting its first Guest of Honor, PulpFest chose a notable publishing professional and a wonderful raconteur with a strong connection to the world of pulp fiction. PulpFest 2009 announced its Guest of Honor on February 14, 2009.

PulpFest’s 2009 Guest of Honor

We’re delighted to announce that Edgar Award-winning writer, editor, and publisher Otto Penzler has accepted our invitation to be the Guest of Honor at this year’s PulpFest.  Otto, whose recent anthology The Black Lizard Big Book of Pulps has done more to renew interest in Golden Age pulp fiction than any mainstream publication in recent history, is a perfect GoH for a show like ours in that he is also a world-class collector of crime fiction, many of whose most notable authors—including Dashiell Hammett, Raymond Chandler, Cornell Woolrich, Erle Stanley Gardner, and John D. MacDonald—toiled in the pulp vineyards before achieving mainstream success with major publishers.

Otto, who will be with us for the entire convention, can be expected to regale PulpFest attendees with stories of his adventures in the publishing business and as a lifelong collector. He’ll also be giving us a preview of his much-anticipated Black Lizard Big Book of Black Mask Stories, an upcoming anthology collecting rare yarns from the prestigious pulp magazine that was home to Hammett, Chandler, and other giants of hard-boiled detective fiction.

Still the proprietor of The Mysterious Bookshop, a New York City landmark that celebrated its 30th anniversary last year, Otto Penzler published The Armchair Detective, an Edgar-winning quarterly journal devoted to the study of mystery and suspense fiction, for seventeen years. He was the founder of The Mysterious Press, now an imprint at Grand Central Publishing, and also launched the publishing firms of Otto Penzler Books and The Armchair Detective Library. He currently has imprints at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in the United States and Quercus in the U.K. In 1977, he won an Edgar Award for the Encyclopedia of Mystery and Detection. The Mystery Writers of America gave him the prestigious Ellery Queen Award in 1994 for his exceptional contributions to the publishing field. He was also honored with MWA’s highest non-writing award, the Raven, in 2003.

Otto first endeared himself to pulp-fiction fans in the late 1970s by publishing a two-volume collection of short stories featuring Norgil, a magician-detective created by Walter B. Gibson, who also wrote more than 280 novel-length adventures of pulpdom’s legendary crime fighter, The Shadow. In 1984, Otto reprinted two of that character’s best-remembered adventures in The Shadow and the Golden Master. Subsequently his Mysterious Press issued trade-paperback anthologies of classic pulp detective stories by Carroll John Daly, Erle Stanley Gardner, Frederick Nebel, Norbert Davis, and others. First You Dream, Then You Die, a deluxe hardcover biography of veteran pulp scribe Cornell Woolrich published by The Mysterious Press in 1988, earned an Edgar for author Francis M. Nevins and became a standard reference work.

A witty raconteur with an encyclopedic knowledge of mystery fiction, Otto has done a lot for the pulp-collecting community and will make a terrific GoH.  We guarantee that you’ll enjoy meeting him.  So don’t wait—download a PulpFest registration form and send it in today!

Keep watching this page for further updates. PulpFest is taking shape fast!


PulpFest is certainly not the only pulp convention out there in the world. There are a fair number of shows scattered throughout North America, among them the recently held Pulp Adventurecon in Bordentown, NJ. One of the biggest and best of the pulp-related convention, The Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention is held in the springtime. Which is why, on April 19, 2009, PulpFest posted the announcement that follows.

Pulps Are in the Air!

Spring is in the air and so is the convention season. The Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention starts the ball rolling during the first weekend of May. Three members of the PulpFest Organizing Committee will be on hand–Jack Cullers, Ed Hulse and Mike Chomko. Please stop by our tables to learn more about what has become the talk of the pulp community–PulpFest 2009!

One short week after the Chicago convention, the pulp community heads to Toronto. Although none of PulpFest’s guiding hands will be in attendance, the 13th Annual Fantastic Pulps Show & Sale is sure to be a blast. For more information, please write to Girasol Collectables.

The month of May closes with the Edgar Rice Burroughs Chain of Friendship gathering in California.

With the arrival of June comes the Spring edition of Classicon. This Michigan convention offers a wide variety of collectibles from pulps and paperbacks to calendars and pin-up magazines. For more information, write to the Curious Book Shop.

Cross Plains, Texas celebrates Robert E. Howard Days on June 12-13. This year, the festival will be saluting the poetry of the popular pulp author.

Although PulpFest 2009 has been generating a lot of positive buzz in the collectibles community, it has not been resting on its laurels. In addition to offering advertising flyers at pulp-related events such as Windy City and Classicon, we’ll be promoting our show at science-fiction and fantasy conventions such as Ravencon, Marcon and Farmercon. Mystery fans will see our hardboiled side at shows like Malice Domestic and Deadly Ink. The Shadow will greet the comics crowd at Steel City Con, Motor City Comic Con and other conventions. And book and paper collectors will get a taste of pulp at the Greater Boston Book and Ephemera Fair, Ann Arbor Antiquarian Book Fair and Chicago’s Printers Row Lit Fest as will movie fans who attend Cinevent.

We’ll also be running print advertisements in The Paper and Advertising Collector’s Marketplace (our first print ad appears in their May issue), Firsts, Alter Ego, Book Source Magazine, Illustration and other publications.

The PulpFest 2009 Organizing Committee is working very hard to get the word out about our convention. Please do your part by sending in your registration for what is shaping up to be the pulp event of 2009!


The last day of each April is the deadline for members of the pulp community to nominate their fellows for the Munsey Award. So on the 18th of May 2009, the following message was posted to the PulpFest website. You can read more about the nominees by visiting the 2009 Munsey Nominees page.

2009 Munsey Award Nominees

The PulpFest Organizing Committee is proud to announce that art designer and illustrator Chris Kalb, researcher and indexer Steve Miller, researcher and editor Garyn Roberts, Coming Attractions’ Bill Thom, Anthony Tollin, publisher of Doc Savage and The Shadow, Battered Silicon Dispath Box publisher George Vanderburgh, and Dan Zimmer, editor and publisher of Illustration Magazine are the candidates for the 2009 Munsey Award. Additional details concerning each nominee can be found in the Munsey Award section of the PulpFest website.

The seven nominees were selected by the general pulp community over a period of several months. PulpFest Organizing Committee members as well as winners of the Lamont Award--a service award that had been presented by Pulpcon–were not eligible for the 2009 Munsey Award. The nominees’ names have been forwarded to a committee made up of the 25 living Lamont Award winners who will decide upon this year’s award winner.

The recipient of the 2009 Munsey Award, a limited edition print designed by artist and pulp enthusiast David Saunders, will be revealed at a special breakfast open to all PulpFest 2009 registrants. It will be held on Sunday, August 2 from 8-10 AM at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio. Additional details concerning this event are forthcoming.


On May 28, 2009, the first PulpFest was fast approaching. It was time to begin our programming announcements. We started things off with a bang, announcing a presentation by Ohio State’s “Professor of Pulp.” Columbus is the home to OSU, one of the nation’s leading universities.

Ohio State at PulpFest

With just nine weeks left before convention time, PulpFest 2009 is finalizing its programming schedule. In the days and weeks ahead, we’ll be announcing our day and evening features. Stay tuned by subscribing to our email list located along the right side of our homepage.

Let’s begin our programming announcements with a look at our “Professor of Pulp” presentation. These days, American universities are actively pursuing and preserving artifacts of our nation’s popular culture. In recent years Ohio State University, located right in Columbus, has been very aggressive in beefing up its holdings of vintage pop-culture treasures, including collections of pulp magazines and manuscripts. It’s our hope that attendees of future PulpFests will be able to visit OSU’s new library for special viewings. To that end Eric Johnson, Associate Curator of Rare Books and Manuscripts and an Assistant Professor at the University, has prepared a brief overview describing OSU’s pulp and pop-culture materials. He’s prepared to discuss the process of assembling and preserving such collections, and he’ll take questions from PulpFest attendees.

Eric’s presentation on Ohio State’s popular culture holdings will be held Saturday, Aug. 1 at 7:30 PM, immediately after the close of the PulpFest business meeting.

Please visit the PulpFest programming page for more details on our schedule.


One day after beginning our programming announcements, PulpFest was pleased to announce that a variety of publishers would be offering free items to our attendees. When July rolled around, members of PulpFest were overjoyed by our table covered with books and periodicals all donated by organizations such as those listed below.

Donations to PulpFest

We would like to thank the following organizations for their generous contributions to PulpFest:
 
Random House Publishing has contributed several hundred advance reading copies of books being prepared for marketing.
 
Small Beer Press has donated ten cartons of books to be made available to attendees of PulpFest.
 
Galaxy Press has sent several hundred copies of The Golden Gazette for our freebie table.
 
Engle Publishing will be sending copies of The Paper & Advertising Collectors’ Marketplace for distribution to PulpFest attendees.

Book Source Magazine will also be sending copies of their publication for distribution at PulpFest.

Two Columbus bookstores have demonstrated their support for PulpFest by displaying our flyers and answering convention-related questions.  We wish to thank Acorn Bookshop and Karen Wickliff Books for their help in promoting our show, and we invite PulpFest attendees to visit them while in town.  We will have maps and directions to these stores available at the convention.


With the convention fast approaching, PulpFest announced on the first of June 2009 that the Ramada Plaza was offering a special deal via their Internet booking site. More than likely, similar deals will be offered by the hotel in 2010 and beyond. And remember, whether you book by phone or online, be sure to mention PulpFest. By doing so, you’ll help our convention to grow and prosper.

Hotel Reservations

With PulpFest less than two months away, it’s time to place your reservation. The preferred way is to call the Ramada Plaza at 614-846-0300 to book your room. Please be sure to mention PulpFest to get the special convention rate of $79 per night. In order to receive the convention rate, you must get your reservation in by July 18.

You can also book a room online. Just click our link to the Ramada Plaza at the top or along the right side of our homepage or even the one right here in this post. For a limited time, if you book online and prepay your hotel bill, the Ramada Plaza is offering 20% off their regular $84 per night room rate for a three-night stay or 15% off their regular room rate for a two-night stay. However, if you take advantage of the prepay rate, you cannot cancel your reservation or get a refund.

If you book your room online, please note in the comments box of the reservation form that you will be attending PulpFest. By doing so, you will help to ensure the success of PulpFest 2009.

Whether you book by phone or online, please be sure to do so by July 18 and to mention PulpFest. Thanks.


One of the top publishers in the world of pulp reprints is Sanctum Books, publishers of two of the best-loved characters from the world of pulps–Doc Savage and The Shadow. PulpFest 2009 made a major score when it landed a presentation by the two men responsible for acquiring the rights to republish the adventures of these two great heroes from the pulps. This announcement was originally posted on June 6, 2009.

The Avenger: Then and Now

Late in the summer of 1939, Street & Smith released the first issue of The Avenger, a new single-character pulp featuring book-length novels written by Paul Ernst under the Kenneth Robeson house name. Richard Henry Benson, the frozen-faced crime fighter who headed Justice, Incorporated, never quite enjoyed the success of fellow Street & Smith pulp heroes Doc Savage and The Shadow, but his 24 novel-length adventures were fondly remembered. In the 1970s, the Avenger was introduced to a new generation via a paperback series published by Warner.

Long out of print, the Avenger’s amazing exploits are now back on the rack, courtesy of Sanctum Books. Celebrating the 70th birthday of The Avenger, Anthony Tollin and  Will Murray, the pulp experts handling the Sanctum line, will discuss the character and try to explain his still-potent appeal. Expect them to also discuss Sanctum’s other new series reprinting Street & Smith’s Whisperer yarns.

Join PulpFest’s celebration of the Avenger on Friday, July 31.


Haffner Press has for the last ten years been reprinting some of most entertaining science fiction from the world of the pulps. Its nearly completed series of The Collected Stories of Jack Williamson have set a very high standard among pulp reprints. On June 16, 2009, PulpFest announced that publisher Stephen Haffner would be presenting a very special talk on one of the first and foremost creators of science fiction, Edmond Hamilton.

Crashing Suns: Edmond Hamilton

Best known to many fans as the creator of Captain Future, Edmond Hamilton was actually one of the first full-time writers of science fiction for the pulps. He pioneered and popularized many themes that later became staples of modern SF. This summer Haffner Press launches its ambitious reprint series, The Collected Edmond Hamilton. Editor and publisher Stephen Haffner has offered to host, exclusively for PulpFest, a presentation that will feature commentary on this popular author’s early work for such avidly collected pulps as Weird Tales, Amazing Stories, Astounding Stories and Wonder Stories. Haffner’s talk will also include several vintage, previously unexhibited photographs of Hamilton and his contemporaries.

Join Stephen Haffner on Friday, July 31 at 9 PM for Crashing Suns: The Early Hamilton.


One of PulpFest’s hallmarks was and continues to be its desire to seek out and try new ideas. This was amply demonstrated by its decision to present “The New Fictioneers,” contemporary authors whose fiction is inspired by a love of the pulps. This ambitious new program was announced on June 20, 2009. By the way, many thanks to John Locke for his help delving into the origins of the term, “fictioneer.”

Meet the New Fictioneers!

They were called scribes, word slingers, hacks and penny-a-worders. But perhaps the most favored term, especially among the men and women who labored for the bloody pulps, was fictioneer—a fiction writer, especially a prolific creator of commercial or pulp fiction.

Join PulpFest as we celebrate today’s fictioneers—the authors writing the new pulp fiction. Listen to Ron Fortier, Bill Maynard, Shelby Rhodes and G. Warlock Vance as they read excerpts from The Terror of Fu Manchu, The Missing Narrative of Neptune and other exciting pulp yarns. They’ll also be available for questions, critiques and good, old-fashioned schmoozing.

PulpFest’s New Fictioneers readings will take place on Friday, 7/31 and Saturday, 8/1. Please visit our programming page for further details.

In case you’re wondering about the term “fictioneer,” most dictionaries place its origin during the early twenties. However, it was relatively commonplace in magazines between 1910 and 1920 and has been spotted in works dating back to the mid-nineteenth century. H. Bedford-Jones used it in a series of articles called “The Graduate Fictioneer,” originally published by Author & Journalist in the early thirties. In 1932, a group of Wisconsin writers got together and called themselves “The Milwaukee Fictioneers.” At various times, Robert Bloch, Fredric Brown, August Derleth, Ralph Milne Farley, Lawrence Keating, Ray Palmer and Stanley Weinbaum were members of this group. In the late 30s, Popular Publications started Fictioneers, Inc., a pulp line that paid its authors half the going market rate of a penny a word. E. Hoffmann Price, soldier-of-fortune and prolific pulp author, used the term in his memoirs from the pulp years, Book of the Dead—Friends of Yesteryear: Fictioneers & Others (Arkham House, 2001). Probably the most recent use of the word was in John Locke’s non-fiction anthology Pulp Fictioneers: Adventures in the Storytelling Business (Adventure House, 2004).


In 2008, the hero pulp (which helped serve as the impetus for the first Pulpcon) turned 75 years old. The Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention celebrated the event during its festivities that year. Unfortunately, there was no PulpFest in 2008. But way back in 1934, the “Hero Pulp Explosion” continued with the introduction of such character pulps as Bill Barnes, Air Adventurer and Secret Agent X. So why not continue the celebration of this great event in the world of pulps with a look at another great hero pulp, Popular Publication’s Secret Service Operator #5. The following announcement was posted on June 28, 2009.

I Spy! – Fred Davis and Operator #5

PulpFest continues the celebration of the 75th anniversary of the “Hero Pulp Explosion” that began last year. In 1934, the great pulp houses followed the introduction of Doc Savage, G-8 and His Battle Aces, The Phantom Detective, The Spider and other single-character pulps with a half-dozen new titles. Street & Smith and Ace got the ball rolling with the debuts of Bill Barnes, Air Adventurer and Secret Agent X. Ranger and Popular followed in April with The Masked Rider and Operator #5. Bringing up the rear were two Popular titles, Dusty Ayres and His Battle Birds and The Secret Six, both of them relatively short-lived pulps. Of these six new heroes, perhaps the most fondly remembered is Popular’s Jimmy Christopher, “America’s Secret Service Ace” who is best known as Operator #5.

Don Hutchison, author of The Great Pulp Heroes, will lead a panel discussion exploring the adventures of Christopher and his supporting cast, and of the author who penned the first twenty adventures of the pulp series, Frederick C. Davis. Joining Don will be Garyn G. Roberts, Chair of the Communications/English Discipline at Northwestern Michigan College, author of a short biography of Davis, and co-editor of The Compleat Adventures of the Moon Man (another Fred Davis creation); Rick Davis and Karen Cunningham, the son and granddaughter of Frederick C. Davis; and Wooda “Nick” Carr, pulp scholar, Davis correspondent and lifelong devotee of Operator #5,  having read it fresh off the newsstand while growing up in North Dakota during the Great Depression.

I Spy – Fred Davis and Operator #5 will take place at 8 PM on Friday, July 31. For more information on Davis and Operator #5, read on…

So where did the wild and wooly adventures of Jimmy Christopher, the “James Bond” of the Great Depression, come from? In an interview published in Xenophile in 1977, Popular Publications president Harry Steeger stated: “I was very anxious at that time to say something about the depression and the political elements of the world and, by this time, the trend of story-telling had begun to assume a broader canvas. In other words, instead of talking about individuals, we began talking about nations and armies, etc. Operator #5 was planned deliberately to exert more influence in this direction than The Spider.

Fredrick C. Davis recalled the basic concept of the Operator #5 novels: “It was that Operator 5 must save the United States from total destruction in every story, every month” (quoted in Ron Goulart’s Cheap Thrills, 1972). “When I was called in to start the series, they already had a cover illustration–the White House being blown up. I did the first Operator 5 around this picture. The characters in detail, the ideas, the plots and the gimmicks were all my inventions” (ibid.).

Although the idea behind the series was imagined by Steeger and his lead editor, Rogers Terrill, it was Davis who filled out Jimmy and his cohorts–boy sidekick Tim Donovan; news reporter and love interest Diane Elliot; his father John Christopher, Agent Q-6; Jimmy’s twin sister, Nan Christopher; and Z-7, the grim-faced chief of intelligence.

After Davis departed from the series in late 1935, the writing chores were assumed by Emile Tepperman, a prolific pulp author about whom little is known. He would soon march Christopher and his colleagues through a series of adventures that has become known as “the pulp version of War and Peace.” Tepperman’s “Purple Invasion” began with the June 1936 number and would continue through the next thirteen issues of the magazine.

Author Wayne Rogers would complete the 48-issue run of Operator #5, penning the “Yellow Vulture” series for the Popular publication. The final issue of the pulp, which told the story of “The Army from Underground,” was dated November 1939. Like all of its predecessors, the author credit was given to Curtis Steele, a Popular Publications house name.


While the rest of the nation was celebrating Independence Day, PulpFest’s Ed Hulse was occupied with putting together a panel of pulp experts to discuss the current state of pulp collecting. On July 8, 2009, PulpFest announced some of the topics that would be explored during this wide-ranging panel discussion.

Pulp Collecting 2009

Ed Hulse, the editor of Blood ‘n’ Thunder, is busy assembling a panel of pulp collectors and dealers who will weigh in on the current state of the hobby. What’s happening with pulp prices? Is demand exceeding supply? What are the hot titles? How has the surge in reprints affected the marketplace? Which magazines will future collectors be chasing? These and other questions will be addressed in this fast-paced discussion that will be held on Friday, July 31, beginning at 7:05 PM.


Even conventions have chores. On July 9, 2009, PulpFest 2009 offered this short post to tidy up some loose ends including the announcement of more free stuff from two more generous publishers.

Housekeeping Chores

Due to popular demand, the PulpFest Organizing Committee has decided that children age 15 and under, who are accompanied by a parent, will be admitted free to the convention. However, they must still be registered to gain admittance.

The deadline for advance registrations is Saturday, July 18. Registrations received after that day will be charged the at-the-door fee of $35 for a three-day membership or $15 per day for daily memberships. Payments made through Paypal will not be accepted after July 18.

The hotel’s special room rate of $79 per night plus tax also runs through Saturday, July 18. If you want to take advantage of this or other offers by the hotel, be sure to make your reservation as soon as possible. For further details, visit the Ramada Plaza page under “The Details.” Be sure to mention PulpFest when placing your reservation whether by phone or online.

If you are planning to attend the Munsey Award Breakfast on Sunday, Aug. 2, please notify Jack Cullers as soon as possible. The breakfast will begin at 8 AM and cost $10-15 per person, tip included. We need to notify the hotel about how many people plan to attend. A high-quality print of the painting that David Saunders has created to serve as the Munsey Award will be on display throughout the convention. For further details, please visit the Munsey Award page of our website.

John Gunnison of Adventure House has generously offered PulpFest a copy of The Thrill Book Complete, Vol. One to serve as a door prize for the Munsey Award Breakfast. One lucky attendee to the award ceremony will go home with a copy of this volume, a $70 value. PulpFest or Adventure House staff members are not eligible for the prize.

Fantasy & Science Fiction, the award-winning magazine that is celebrating its sixtieth anniversary in 2009, has donated several hundred back issues to hand out to our members come showtime. Back numbers of Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine will also be on hand. Dell Magazines has donated over five hundred Queens to PulpFest.

Finally, Jack Cullers will serve as the master of ceremonies during our evening programming.


Nearly three weeks before the big event, the PulpFest organizing committee was overjoyed to announce that every dealer table in the huckster area had been spoken for. Many thanks to all of the dealers who decided to throw their support behind the efforts of those who worked to organize this exciting, new convention. You can read about our dealers by visiting the PulpFest 2009 Dealers page.

It’s a Sellout!

As of July 11, all 100 dealer tables slated for PulpFest 2009 had been reserved. For those dealers still interested in island tables, we will now be creating a waiting list in case of last-minute cancellations. If you would like to be added to this waiting list, please contact Jack Cullers at jack@pulpfest.com. You will not be required to pay for a table until you arrive at the convention. However, you must purchase a full, three-day membership to be added to our waiting list. They are available for $30 through Saturday, July 18. All three-day memberships purchased after July 18 will cost $35. The deadline to be added to our dealer waiting list is Saturday, July 18.

Please see our registration page for further information about registering as a dealer and/or member. We’ll see you in 3 weeks for what promises to be a great summer weekend for pulp fans.


On the 14th of July, PulpFest 2009 made its final programming announcement. For those people who hated to see a convention’s nightly programming come to an end, PulpFest decided to offer a presentation that would run until midnight. What better topic to explore than the work and legacy of the great H. P. Lovecraft, whose stories for Weird Tales and other pulps have inspired scores of authors since they were first published.

Lovecraft for the Night Owls

For those who like to burn the midnight oil, Ian Lohr, editor of Howling Wolf’s Lost Pulp Classics series, will explore the life and legacy of H. P. Lovecraft. Lovecraft and His Circle: Yog-Sothery and Its Influence on Writing and the Universe will take place on Friday, July 31, beginning at 11 PM.  

Today recognized as a master of supernatural fiction, during his lifetime Lovecraft was an impoverished writer who subsisted on canned pork and beans while spinning what would become some of the most widely respected tales to emerge from the pulp market. In such stories as “The Call of Cthulhu,” “The Colour Out of Space,” and “The Shadow Over Innsmouth,” Lovecraft combined the elements of Gothic horror with the emerging field of science fiction to create some of the most unique fiction of his day or any day.

In his voluminous correspondence, Lovecraft encouraged other writers to develop further the ideas he was exploring in his own fiction. Soon, Frank Belknap Long, Clark Ashton Smith, Robert E. Howard and others were refining their colleague’s “Yog-Sothery,” now better known as the Cthulhu Mythos.

Lovecraft’s influence is felt even today in the fiction of Poppy Z. Brite, Neil Gaiman, Stephen King and others as well as in other areas of popular culture such as film, comic books, role-playing games, Scandinavian heavy metal music and a wide array of contemporary mythologies.

So join Ian as the witching hour approaches for an evening of cosmic horror, pop culture and philosophy.


Thanks to the efforts of Mark Trost, in the days leading up to PulpFest 2009, the convention found its way into newspapers, magazines, and other mass media. On July 26, 2009 less than a week before the start of the convention, PulpFest was very pleased to announce the publication of articles about the pulps and our convention in two Midwestern newspapers. The Columbus Dispatch piece was later picked up by Business Week, a national business news magazine.

PulpFest in the News

News of PulpFest 2009 found its way today into two Midwestern newspapers. Our convention was featured on the front page of the arts section of The Columbus Dispatch and in the local news section of The Parkersburg News and Sentinel. The show starts this Friday, July 31, at 11 AM. 

 


July 26, 2009 and PulpFest’s debut was right around the corner. As is normal in the world of conventions, there were many last minute tasks to discuss. And just as they did in 2009, the PulpFest organizing committee is urging dealers to arrive on Thursday in order to set up their displays for the 2010 convention. In fact, they’re hoping everyone will show up by Thursday evening . They’ll be offering a July 29th film showing as well as a “Welcome to the Summer’s Great Pulp Con” party to those who arrive on the day before the convention’s official opening on July 30, 2010.

PulpFest 2009 Begins this Friday!

Although PulpFest 2009 officially gets under way on Friday, July 31, the convention’s organizing committee is urging dealers to arrive on Thursday to set up their displays. The dealers’ room will be open from 7 PM to 12 AM for set-up. It will also be open for set-up on Friday morning from 8 to 11.

The general membership is also welcome to arrive on Thursday. Early registration will take place beginning at 7 PM in the hospitality suite. The Ramada Plaza will post the location of the suite at the main entrance to the hotel. All members, dealers included, will be able to pick up their registration packets at this time. If desired, dealers can unload their merchandise prior to registering for the convention. For those of you who have not yet registered for PulpFest, Thursday evening will be an ideal time to do so. Three-day memberships will be available for $35. Early-bird memberships will be available for $55. You can also register for single-day memberships at the rate of $15 per day.

The PulpFest organizing committee is looking for volunteers to serve as hospitality suite hosts on Friday and Saturday evenings. If you are willing, please write to ed@pulpfest.com. We’re also looking for sponsors to purchase refreshments for the suite. If you’re a publisher, dealer, organized fan group or simply someone who would like to help, please drop us a line. 

The Ramada Plaza Hotel and Convention Center is located just off Exit 116 of I-71, about ten minutes north of downtown Columbus, Ohio. Heading north on I-71, get off at Exit 116, the Morse Road exit. Turn left onto Morse Road. Follow Morse until you get to Sinclair Road. Turn right onto Sinclair Road. The hotel is at 4900 Sinclair Road. Heading south on I-71, get off at Exit 116, the Sinclair Road exit. Turn right onto Sinclair Road and follow to the Ramada Plaza Hotel. For those who would like a map to get to the hotel, click here.

According to reports from last-minute registrants, the Ramada Plaza is still offering the special convention rate of $79 per night to those PulpFest attendees who place a reservation via telephone. To make a reservation, please call the hotel at 614-846-0300. Be sure to mention PulpFest to get the special convention rate. You can also register online at ramadaplazacolumbus.com and receive a similar deal if you pay in advance. When placing your reservation online, please note in the comments box of the reservation form that you will be attending PulpFest.

The convention will officially open on Friday, July 31 at 11 PM. Early-bird registrants will be allowed into the dealers’ room beginning at 9 AM. If you’d like to upgrade your prepaid membership to gain early access to the dealers’ room, you will be able to do so by paying an additional $25. The doors will open to everyone, beginning at 11 AM. The dealers’ room will be open until 5 PM on Friday evening. It will be open from 10 AM to 5 PM on both Saturday and Sunday.

There will be a full schedule of programming on Friday and Saturday evenings from 7 PM until midnight. There will also be a few presentations during the daytime hours. Please visit our programming page for further details.

All PulpFest attendees will be able to submit material for inclusion in the Saturday Night Auction. At this time, it is believed that each attendee will be able to submit up to five auction lots. For additional information, please visit our Saturday Night Auction page.

The first annual Munsey Award will be presented at a special breakfast on Sunday, Aug. 2, beginning at 8 AM. You will be able to sign up for the breakfast during our Thursday night registration or anytime during the afternoon hours on Friday or Saturday. The cost of the breakfast will be $15 per person. Included in this price will be a chance to win a copy of The Thrill Book Complete, Vol. One, a $70 value from Adventure House.

PulpFest 2009 will have a ton of freebies available for all attendees. There will be a variety of materials at the entrance to the dealers’ room. These will be accessible beginning Friday morning. So bring along a BIG bag!

For those attendees who would like to ship their purchases to their homes, PulpFest 2009 has arranged for a local UPS store to be open on both Saturday and Sunday afternoon. The store will be open until 3 PM on Saturday and from 1 – 3 PM on Sunday. Transportation can be arranged through the hotel’s shuttle service. A local FedEx office, located about two miles from the hotel, will also be open for shipping your purchases.

The entire PulpFest 2009 organizing committee–Mike Chomko, Jack Cullers, Ed Hulse and Barry Traylor–is looking forward to seeing you all in just a few short days. Have a safe trip to Columbus.


July 31, 2009! It’s Showtime!!!

PulpFest 2009 Gets Underway!

Following dealer set-up on Thursday evening and early Friday morning, PulpFest 2009 officially got underway at 11 AM this morning. As always, the show began with the typical feeding frenzy as book and pulp collectors scoured the room searching for this or that long elusive volume. The convention’s programming schedule will get underway at 3:30 this afternoon when G. Warlock Vance and Michael Glagola get things rolling with the first of four “New Fictioneers” sessions. There will be a lot more programming during the evening hours including presentations on pulp collecting, Operator #5, Edmond Hamilton, The Avenger, and H. P. Lovecraft.

There’s still plenty of time to join in on the fun. The dealers’ room will be open until 5 PM on Friday and from 10 AM until 5 PM on Saturday and Sunday. The evening programming schedules for Friday and Saturday nights will run from 7 PM until 12 AM. Admission to the show is $15 per day or $35 for all three days, allowing entry to all convention activities. The general public is very much welcome to attend.

To whet your appetite for the summer’s one and only national pulp convention, below is a sneak peek at the Munsey Award that will be presented at a special breakfast to be held at the Ramada Plaza in Columbus, Ohio from 8 AM to 10 AM, Sunday, August 2…. 


On August 2, 2009, PulpFest 2009 was history. By everyone’s estimation, the convention was a tremendous success. With a paid attendance of 351, the convention was nearly double the announced attendance of similar summer pulp cons in recent history. One of the many highlights of the convention was the announcement of the 2009 winner of the Munsey Award, Bill Thom, the creator and designer of the Coming Attractions website.

Bill Thom Wins the 2009 Munsey Award

Bill Thom, the designer of the Coming Attractions website, was named the recipient of the 2009 Munsey Award at this year’s PulpFest. Nominated by members of the general pulp community, Bill was selected by a panel of judges consisting of the 25 living Lamont Award winners.

Bill’s website is where just about every pulp fan with computer access goes to learn about the latest news and book releases in the world of pulps and pulp reprints. He also maintains the Pulp Series Character Reprint Index that can be accessed through the Altus Press website as well as the Robert E. Howard bibliography available through the Howard Works website. He has also been a tremendous help for researchers over the years through his knowledge and collection.

Congratulations to Bill for winning the first Munsey Award. The honor is very well-deserved.

Nominations are now being accepted for the 2010 Munsey Award. If you have someone in mind that you feel worthy to receive the Munsey Award, please let us know. Send the person’s name and a brief paragraph describing why you feel that person should be honored to Mike Chomko, 2217 W. Fairview Street, Allentown, PA 18104-6542 or to mike@pulpfest.com. Previous winners of the Lamont Award or the Munsey Award are not eligible for the award. The deadline for nominations is April 30, 2010.


On August 3, 2009, planning and organizing is already underway for the 2010 convention. Clear your calendar for the weekend of July 30 – August 1, 2010 and join us at PulpFest 2010.

PulpFest 2009 is a Hit!

Thanks to all of our dealers and attendees who made PulpFest 2009 a great success. Please visit YouTube for a short video of this year’s PulpFest. Registrations totaled 351 and the future looks very bright for “The Summer’s Leading Pulp Convention.”

Planning is already underway for PulpFest 2010. It will again be held at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Convention Center, just off of Interstate 71, about ten minutes north of downtown Columbus. We’ll have an expanded dealers’ room, one or more lively auctions and a variety of the wonderful programming that entertained this year’s attendees.

So start making your plans for the weekend of July 30 – August 1, 2010 and join the convention that everyone is talking about–PulpFest!


Any convention is the work of many people and PulpFest 2009 is appreciative to all who helped make our first pulp con a great success.

Thanks a Million!

The PulpFest Organizing Committee would like to thank the following people whose invaluable assistance helped to make PulpFest 2009 a resounding success:

Sally Cullers, Samantha Cullers, Aaron Cullers, John Gunnison, Mark Trost, Chris Kalb, David Saunders, Dan Zimmer, Steve Haynes, Phil Nelson, John Wehler, Curt Phillips, Rusty Burke, Morgan Holmes, Kurt Shoemaker, Rick Hall, Nicholas Hauser, Barry Traylor, Mark Halegua, Lohr McKinstry, Dave Kurzman, Walker Martin, Scott Hartshorn, Vineetha Thomas and Diane Share of Experience Columbus, and Meri Lynne Stumbo, Beth Sweet, Mark Carr, Jack, Patrick, Andrew and the rest of the staff at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Convention Center.

The Organizing Committee would also like to thank all of the folks who helped to assemble The Pulpster #18:

Tony Davis, Bill Lampkin, Rex Layton, Monte Herridge, Mike Chomko, Garyn Roberts, Nick Carr, Dean Cartier, Joseph Wrzos, the late Edd Cartier, Barry Traylor, Peter Chomko, Will Murray and the magazine’s sponsors–Altus Press, Age of Aces Books, Girasol Collectables, Dwight Fuhro, Black Coat Press, Mike Chomko Books, Off-Trail Publications, Fenham Publishing, and The Pulp Art Gallery.

And many thanks to all of the presenters who informed and entertained everyone who attended our programming events:

Doug Ellis, John Gunnison, Walker Martin, Tom Roberts, Don Hutchison, Garyn Roberts, Rick Davis, Karen Cunningham, Nick Carr, Ron Fortier, Bill Maynard, Shelby Rhodes, Warlock Vance, Mike Glagola, Stephen Haffner, Anthony Tollin, Will Murray, Eric Johnson, Ian Lohr, our Guest of Honor, Otto Penzler, our masters of ceremonies, Jack Cullers and Ed Hulse,  auction organizers Barry Traylor, Mike Chomko, Aaron Cullers, and Sam Cullers, and the Lamont Award winners who helped to select the winner of the 2009 Munsey Award, Bill Thom.

Finally, thanks to all of the conventions, book shows, websites, magazines and newspapers that helped to promote our show as well as the dealers, attending members and supporting members of PulpFest 2009. Truly, it was your encouragement and support that ultimately made our convention a great success. We hope to see you all back in 2010, along with a good many newcomers who will join in the fun at PulpFest 2010.

 

 

 

 

**** - Dime Novel Round-Up - ****

2012/01/26

J. Randolph Cox, editor and publisher of Dime Novel Round-Up, offered the following summary of PulpFest 2011 in the October 2011 issue (Whole No. 731) of his journal dedicated to the study of dime and nickel novels, story papers, series books and pulp magazines. The article is © 2011 J. Randolph Cox and used with permission. Accompanying photographs are © 2011 by Nicky Wheeler-Nicholson Brown, Win Scott Eckert, and Michael Neno and used with permission.

PulpFest 2011 Convention Report

For the third year in a row, PulpFest proved to be a worthy successor to the annual and semi-annual Pulpcon that was such a staple of the collecting world for more than thirty years. “If you think this is good, you should have been at Pulpcon 1! It was unbelievable!” Such a statement could be heard from more than one old-timer among the attendees this year. But that was then, this was now. PulpFest 2011 was held for three days, July 29th to 31st at the usual place, the Ramada Plaza Hotel & Conference Center in Columbus, Ohio. As was the case in the previous two years, it was a rousing success.

For those who arrived early, there was an opportunity for the dealers to set up and a chance for early registration. Since the theme of the convention was “Celebrating 80 Years of The Shadow” (the first issue of the magazine was on the stands in 1931), there was an evening showing of three rare Shadow shorts: “A Burglar to the Rescue,” “House of Mystery,” and “The Circus Show-Up.” These were three stories adapted for the screen from Detective Story Magazine and introduced by The Shadow when he was the host of The Detective Story Hour on radio and not the character he became later in the pulps.

Following the three shorts there was a rare showing of The Black Watch, John Ford’s 1929 adaptation of Talbot Mundy’s classic King of the Khyber Rifles. This time it was to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Talbot Mundy’s first appearance in print. Your reporter was on hand for the shorts and then stayed for the feature. He intended only to watch the first ten minutes or so of the latter, but became so caught up in the story and the performances of Victor McLaglen as Donald King and Myrna Loy as Yasmini that he stayed until the end somewhere in the wee hours of the night. Your reporter hastens to say that while the film was not very faithful to the original (for one thing, King’s first name in the book was Athelstan), he still found it entertaining.

On Friday morning PulpFest officially began with the traditional wheeling and dealing in the dealers’ room. Your reporter met with Walter Albert and his brother, Jim, at their table and we caught up with life since our last encounter two years previous. The formal part of the afternoon program consisted of readings by “The New Fictioneers,” contemporary authors of pulp fiction. Duane Spurlock read from his “Shalimar Bang and the Bad Luck Baedeker” and “Space Detective at Hell Gate.” He was followed by Wayne Reinagel reading from his novels Khan Dynasty and Viktoriana. The third Fictioneer was Win Scott Eckert, who read from The Justice Inc. Files and The Evil in Pemberley House. In the interest of full disclosure your reporter has to admit that he joined his friends for lunch instead of staying for the readings.

We were on hand during the evening for most of the programming. Jack Cullers offered the official welcome and was quickly followed by Martin Grams with a fascinating slide show about The Shadow radio program. David Saunders celebrated the 100th birthdays of artists Emery Clarke, Robert Harris, and Milton Luros with slides of them and their works. The piece de resistance was the panel “Granddaughters of the Pulps,” with Karen Cunningham (her grandfather was Frederick C. Davis), Laurie Powers (granddaughter of Paul S. Powers), and Nicky Wheeler-Nicholson Brown (granddaughter of Major Malcolm Wheeler-Nicholson). Each was a descendant of a pulp writer. Each spoke of her memories of her grandfather, the discoveries they had made while researching their lives and reading their stories, and what they subsequently learned about themselves.

 

Nicky Brown & David Saunders

This was followed by Stephen Haffner’s illustrated talk about Catherine Lucille Moore, one of the first female writers of science fiction and fantasy. 2011 is the centennial of her birth. The final Friday night panel was “The Shadow and the Wold Newton,” a celebration of Philip José Farmer, with presentations by Michael Croteau, Win Scott Eckert, Rick Lai, and Art Sippo. Due to some technical difficulties during the previous presentation, this panel began very late (after 11:00 PM) and your reporter was unable to stay up to watch.

Michael Croteau, Rick Lai, Win Scott Eckert, and Art Sippo, FarmerCon VI Panel

On Saturday, the dealers’ room was open once again and a panel featuring contemporary pulp fiction writers was offered. Authors Bill Craig, Win Scott Eckert, Greg Gick, Wayne Reinagel, Art Sippo, and Duane Spurlock participated in a panel about stories inspired by the old pulp writers. Later in the afternoon, Bill Craig read from his new Hardluck Hannigan novel, The Golden Scorpion. Your reporter and his friends went to lunch and visited bookstores. Among the continued traditions was a visit to an ice cream parlor. As a result we missed the PulpFest 2011 business meeting and the 2011 “Munsey Award Presentation” which went to Anthony Tollin for his work in producing the Sanctum Books editions of The Shadow and Doc Savage.

Anthony Tollin accepts the 2011 Munsey Award.

Garyn Roberts made a lively presentation on “Steampunk in the Days of Dime Novels and the Pulp Magazines,” which was enhanced by some wonderful covers of Frank Reade and his steam man. Garyn ended, appropriately enough, with the Great Marvel stories and Tom Swift.

The final panel of the convention was devoted to Walter B. Gibson and three people who had known Gibson took the platform– Anthony Tollin, Will Murray, and your reporter. We answered questions about our experiences with the man who wrote nearly 300 Shadow novels over eighteen years.

Anthony Tollin, Ed Hulse, Randy Cox, and Will Murray discuss Walter B. Gibson, author of nearly 300 Shadow novels

The final event was the annual auction which made up in enthusiasm what it may have lacked in really rare and expensive items.

No official tally of the number in attendance seemed to be announced, but the number had to be in the hundreds. A tentative number might be set at between 430 and 435. The number on your PulpFest badge should have been some indication, but since your reporter’s was in the 400’s and he thought he had registered early, it was not a good indicator. As usual, there were many walk-ins on Saturday who came for the pulps and not the programming. While there were many real pulps (and a few dealers who specialized in them), the trend still appears to be toward quality reprint collections and print-on-demand publications. Girasol Collectables was there with their facsimiles of the original magazines, especially The Spider, but there were other companies represented as well. Adventure House is producing frequent facsimiles of The Phantom Detective that are hard to tell from the real thing except that the paper doesn’t flake off in your hands as you turn the pages. They also have produced single issues of titles like Thrilling Detective.

Display of Adventure House pulp replicas

On Sunday our group had breakfast together, packed up, said our goodbyes, and went our separate ways. Your reporter did not add much to his collection this year, but he did find a 1938 issue of Argosy and an edition of Alexandre Dumas’ The Three Musketeers that he had never seen before. In addition, he acquired copies of the books under review later in this issue of Dime Novel Round-Up.

J. Randolph Cox

Dime Novel Round-Up appears six times each year. A one-year subscription costs $20 and is available through Amazon.com or by sending a check or money order to J. Randolph Cox, Dime Novel Round-Up, P. O. Box 226, Dundas, MN 55019.
 

**** - Mystery*File Report - ****

2012/01/26

Lamont Award winner Walker Martin wrote the following report for Steve Lewis’ Mystery*File. It appeared on that blog on Tuesday, August 2, 2011. The article is © 2011 Walker Martin and used with permission. Accompanying photographs are © 2011 by Nicky Wheeler-Nicholson BrownMichael Neno, and various Internet sites and used with permission.

PulpFest 2011 Convention Report

(Aug. 2, 2011) Over the past forty years, I guess I’ve attended forty pulp conventions and I’ve always traveled by car either alone or with another collector. This is the first year that five of us rented a van and it was quite an experience. Between the five collectors there must of been at least 200 years of collecting books, pulps, digests, and vintage paperbacks. Three of us even collect original pulp cover paintings, not to mention slicks and other old magazines such as literary magazines, men’s adventure magazines, etc.

Ed HulseWe kept each other amused by recalling strange book adventures and bizarre topics like "The Craziest Pulp Collector I Have Known." Needless to say, some of the people in the van qualify for this title! I might as well mention the names of these demented souls who spend their lives dreaming of pulps and books. In addition to myself, the collectors cooped up in this van were Nick Certo, Steve Kennedy, Digges La Touche, and last and not least, Ed Hulse (pictured), who was our driver.

Somehow, this overloaded van arrived safely a little over eight hours later. Even more surprising was the fact that we had not killed each other and were still on speaking terms. After checking into the Ramada Plaza, we all headed for the dealer’s room to set up our tables.

It was the same large room as last year and held over 100 tables. Because the large unloading doors were open to the 95 degree heat, there appeared to be very little air conditioning in effect.

We were not amused to find out at dinner that the restaurant was also very warm. Not only that, but they were out of certain items on the menu, including hamburger at one meal. When I ordered beer, practically every brand I tried to get was not available. Frankly, the restaurant did not seem set up to handle a convention weekend.

Next day when the dealer’s room opened officially, it was obvious that this was another rousing success due to the hard work of the PulpFest committee: Mike Chomko, Jack Cullers, Ed Hulse, and Barry Traylor. Jack Cullers also seemed to have an army of support from his family and friends.

I really must say these people deserve the thanks of pulp collectors for putting on such an excellent show. The attendance was the highest yet of any Pulpcon or PulpFest, over 425 attendees, which is a nice 10% increase over last year’s figure.

At my table, I sold far more than I thought I would, selling DVDs, cancelled checks from the files of Popular Publications and Munsey, and 39 duplicate Manhunt’s.

The biggest sale I noticed involved a 1929 Black Mask with white paper, in fine condition. The seller asked me what I thought it was worth and I said over $500, perhaps closer to a $1000. The first collector I told ran over and paid $900 for the issue. The unusual thing is that the reason the magazine sold was not because of the fine condition or because it was a 1929 Black Mask with a Hammett story. It sold because the collector was a rabid collector of Erle Stanley Gardner.

Another big sale I witnessed was the Ace Double original cover painting for Mrs. Homicide by Norman Saunders. Written by Day Keene, this short novel was paired with Bill Stuart’s Dead Ahead when it was published by Ace Books back in 1953. After much haggling, the painting sold for over $8,000. 

Several pulp reprints made their debut including Ed Hulse’s new issue of Blood n Thunder; Savages by Gordon Young; and The Best of Blood n Thunder. I bought all three publications and Ed said he sold just about all the copies that he had brought to the convention.

Laurie Powers also had good sales of her new book, a collection of Paul Power’s stories, titled Riding the Pulp Trail. Tom Roberts of Black Dog Books also had several new books for sale, including Pulp Vault 14, the best single issue of a pulp fanzine ever published.

Matt Moring of Altus Press has an ambitious reprint schedule, including collections of Fred Nebel’s Tough Dick Donahue, Kennedy and McBride, and Cardigan. These are major publications and well worth buying because the original Black Mask and Dime Detective pulps are so expensive.

The 20th issue of The Pulpster also made its debut and looked like one of the best issues yet. The editor is Tony Davis and he featured ten articles, including an unpublished story by H. Russell Wakefield. There were articles on William Cox and H. Bedford Jones and Don Hutchison’s memories of John Fleming Gould. He appeared at Pulpcon 19 in Wayne, New Jersey and I remember his visit vividly. I was high bidder on one of his sketches showing G-8′s Herr Doktor Krueger. Additionally, John Locke contributed an interesting piece on “Hunting Pulpsters In Graveyards”

I heard later that Locke and John Wooley visited the gravesite of D. L. Champion, who wrote the crazy Inspector Allhoff series for Dime Detective and the Rex Sackler stories for Black Mask. The grave is evidently near the convention hotel and I would have liked to visit it. Unfortunately, I get very emotional about pulp writers and probably would have made a fool of myself, not to mention getting arrested for trying to sell the remains at PulpFest.

One of the big surprises of the convention was the visit of former Pulpcon chairman and organizer, Rusty Hevelin. In the early years, Rusty single handedly kept Pulpcon going and deserves our thanks for his efforts, without which there might not be a convention all these years later.

He received a round of applause as he entered the dealers’ room and because he is in his late 80′s, I figured he would visit for just a short time and then leave. However, he evidently enjoyed himself and stayed all three days. He even attended the evening programming with his friend, Gay Haldeman. Welcome back Rusty.

Another collector I was glad to see was Gordon Huber, the only person to actually attend every Pulpcon and Pulpfest since the first one in 1972. Unfortunately there were several collectors who could not attend this year, including such long time attendees as Al Tonik, Steve Lewis, and Dave Kurzman.

The evening programming was some of the best I’ve ever seen. Some of the highlights were the three “Shadow” shorts from 1931-1932; the speech given by David Saunders on three pulp artists; the grandaughters of the pulps panel featuring Laurie Powers, Karen Cunningham, and Nicky Wheeler-Nicholson; Stephen Haffner’s talk on C. L. Moore; Garyn Roberts discussion of steampunk in the pulps and dime novels: and the panel on Walter Gibson and The Shadow.

Granddaughters Panel–Karen Davis Cunningham, Ed Hulse, Nicky Wheeler-Nicholson Brown, and Laurie Powers

The auction was disappointing to me, but I imagine some collectors found some good items. Tony Tollin won the Munsey Award for his extensive work reprinting the pulp novels featuring The Shadow, Doc Savage, and other Street & Smith characters.

The daytime programming consisted of readings and panels featuring contemporary authors discussing the new pulp fiction. The Pulpster also had an article about this recent movement. I have to admit I like the old pulp fiction from the original magazines. But evidently, there are some fans of this new pulp fiction.

Finally, I would like to thank the people responsible for stocking the hospitality suite with beer, soda, and snacks. I also noticed a couple pizzas floating around and whoever ordered them let me have a piece. Each year, I notice Rusty Burke in the room and he is one of the collectors responsible for the beer and locking up the room. Thank you Rusty.

Rusty Burke with the late Glenn Lord on the occasion of Glenn’s 80th birthday in November 2011.

I hope to see even more collectors in attendance next year because it is so important to support this convention.

After all, book and pulp collectors are my favorite people…

Walker Martin

Mystery*File is a blog published by Steve Lewis, a reader and collector of mystery fiction. It is devoted to mystery and detective fiction—the books, the films, the authors, and those who read, watch, collect and make annotated lists of them.

**** - PulpFest 2011 Blogroll - ****

2012/01/26

Following is a behind-the-scenes look at the creation of PulpFest 2011, told through the posts that originally appeared on the convention’s home page during 2010 and 2011. They began in October 2011 when the organizing committee started to plan, arrange, and promote the 2011 convention.

Mark Your Calendar for PulpFest 2011

(Oct. 5, 2010) PulpFest will be returning to the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Conference Center in Columbus, Ohio during the last weekend of July 2011. It will begin Friday, July 29 and run through Sunday, July 31. Early registration and dealer set-up will take place on Thursday evening, July 28. The PulpFest 2011 organizing committee will also sponsor a party in the convention’s hospitality suite on Thursday evening as well as a movie program assembled by Blood ‘n’ Thunder editor Ed Hulse. The dealers’ room will open to all on Friday, July 29, at 9 AM.

The Ramada Plaza will be maintaining its $79 per night room rate for PulpFest 2011 attendees. Please visit our hotel page under “Details” for further information about this exceptional offer and start making your plans to attend Summer’s pulp con, celebrating forty years in 2011!!!


Upcoming Events

(Oct. 24, 2010) While you anxiously await the arrival of the next PulpFest, why not attend one of the regional events that may be in your own back yard?

Rich Harvey’s Pulp AdventureCon will take place Saturday, November 6th from 10 AM until 5 PM. This one day show is a very enjoyable event, held once or twice a year at the Ramada Inn in Bordentown, New Jersey, just off Exit 7 of the Turnpike. For more details, please visit http://www.boldventurepress.com/.

On November 13th, one week after Pulp AdventureCon, Ray Walsh will be holding the 38th Classicon at the University Quality Inn in Lansing, MI. One of the oldest pulp and paperback gatherings, you can learn more about this event by visiting http://www.curiousbooks.com/classicon.html.

For those fans in the Southwest, Doc Con XIII will be held in Peoria, Arizona from November 12th – 14th. The 70th birthday of the Doc Savage comic book and the 75th anniversary of Chemistry the ape’s first appearance in the pulps will be the focus of the programming. You can learn more about this Doccentric convention by visiting Bill Lampkin’s Yellowed Perils blog. Details about the show can be found here.

On a more regular basis, namely the second Saturday of each and every month, the Gotham Pulp Collectors Club hold their regular meeting at the Hudson Park Library in Manhattan. Visit their website or write to info@gothampulpcollectors.com for further details.

And don’t forget, the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention will start next year’s pulp con season off with a bang. Help to celebrate the 80th anniversary of Popular Publications by attending this great convention, April 15-17, 2011.


PulpFest 2011 Flyers

(Nov. 22, 2010) The PulpFest organizing committee is pleased to announce that its flyer for the 2011 convention is armed and ready. Many thanks to Chris Kalb for his brilliant design work. Please visit our promotion page for links to the new flyer in a variety of formats. Your help in promoting PulpFest 2011 will be thoroughly appreciated.


Happy Holidays from PulpFest

(Dec. 13, 2010) Here’s wishing all of you the happiest of holiday seasons. May good old St. Nick leave you copious quantities of your favorite pulp magazines to tide you over until the pulp con season begins with the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention starting on April 15, continuing with PulpFest 2011 at the end of July, and on through to next fall’s events.

Many thanks to Jerry Page for sending us this wonderful holiday cover. Interestingly, in 1930, Detective Story Magazine spawned a radio program that featured an announcer that called himself “The Shadow.” Soon thereafter, people began visiting newsstands in search of “that Shadow magazine.” This led Street & Smith to create a single-character magazine known as The Shadow Magazine. In 2011, PulpFest will celebrate the 80th anniversary of this classic magazine, the first of the hero pulps.


Fifty Years After Hammett

(Jan. 10, 2011) Today marked the 50th anniversary of the death of Dashiell Hammett, the Black Mask writer and author of such classics as The Maltese Falcon, The Glass Key, and the Continental Op stories. Although Carroll John Daly created the first hardboiled detective–Three Gun Terry Mack–it was Hammett, a former Pinkerton operative, who became the earliest master of the genre. His lean writing style, cynical characters and complex plots were held up as models for other writers by Black Mask editor Joseph “Cap” Shaw.

Fifty years after his death (and nearly eighty years after the publication of his last novel, The Thin Man), Dashiell Hammett’s influence endures in the field of mystery fiction. Much of his work remains in print, retaining its freshness and vibrancy.

For over thirty years, Don Herron, one of the nominees for the 2010 Munsey Award, has honored the author and former Pinkerton detective by leading the Dashiell Hammett Tour through San Francisco’s “mean streets.” The longest running literary tour in the USA, Herron’s four-hour walk not only visits all the known Hammett residences in California’s Baghdad by the Bay, but also many of the locations mentioned or suggested in The Maltese Falcon and the author’s other works.

For further information about the Dashiell Hammett Tour, please visit Up and Down These Mean Streets, the official website of Don Herron.


2011 Registrations Being Accepted

(Jan. 16, 2011) As of today, the PulpFest 2011 website is officially open for business. If you turn to our Registration page, you’ll find updated versions of both our member and dealer registration forms, including ones that you can fill in and print right from your own computer. Additionally, PulpFest will be happy to accept your payment through our Paypal Order page where you can pay for memberships and dealer tables. We look forward to seeing you over the last weekend of July.


 Rare Shadow Films to Be Screened

(Jan. 20, 2011) This year PulpFest celebrates the 80th anniversary of the launching of The Shadow Magazine, which literally changed the course of pulp history by creating the vogue in rough-paper publications devoted to a single character. As it happens, 2011 is also the 80th anniversary of The Shadow’s celluloid debut; the character was featured in six short subjects released to theaters between the summer of 1931 and the spring of 1932. PulpFest, in conjunction with Anthony Tollin’s Sanctum Books, has obtained copies of three Shadow featurettes—including the first—and will kick off its anniversary celebration of The Shadow Magazine by screening them on Thursday evening, July 28th.

Advertised as Shadow Detective Mysteries, these two-reel short subjects (running approximately 20 minutes each) followed the format of The Detective Story Hour, the weekly radio program that began in July of 1930 and dramatized stories from Street & Smith’s Detective Story Magazine. Created for this show, The Shadow originally served as each episode’s narrator, not its protagonist. His sinister tones and sepulchral laugh—provided by actor Frank Readick—were those Walter Gibson described in his early Shadow novels.

The radio program’s surprise success not only resulted in The Shadow’s retooling as a pulp-magazine hero, but also in his visualization by filmmakers eager in those early “talkie” years to capitalize on the popularity of characters whose adventures traveled over the ether waves. The Detective Story Hour was licensed for screen adaptation less than a year after it began.

Like the individual radio episodes, each Shadow Detective Mystery was based on a yarn from Detective Story Magazine. The first featurette, “A Burglar to the Rescue,” was adapted from a Herman Landon story of the same title, which appeared in the November 1, 1930 issue of the pulp. Shot in New York City, it starred Thurston Hall, Charlotte Wynters, and Frank Shannon—all of whom would make their marks on Hollywood, the latter as “Dr. Zarkov” in the Flash Gordon serials. The Shadow, seen as a cloaked figure whose silhouette flitted across walls, was voiced by radio’s Readick. Fortunately, this two-reeler is one of the three that will be screened at PulpFest.

The other two featurettes we’re running, “House of Mystery” and “The Circus Show-up,” are based on Detective Story Magazine yarns by Judson P. Phillips and Leslie T. White respectively. “Burglar to the Rescue” was screened some years ago at a Hollywood-based film festival shortly after it was discovered and preserved; to date it has not been exhibited elsewhere. “House of Mystery” and “The Circus Show-up” have not been shown in any public venue since being preserved. PulpFest 2011 attendees will be the first people to have seen these short subjects since their theatrical engagements in 1932.

The PulpFest committee thanks Anthony Tollin, publisher of The Shadow and Doc Savage reprint series, for his support of this undertaking, which is certain to generate lots of buzz as convention time draws near. Additional details will be posted on the PulpFest web site as they become available. For more information about these Shadow short subjects, please visit the Sanctum Books website.


Happy 100th to C. L. Moore

(Jan. 24, 2011) Born on January 24, 1911, Catherine Lucille Moore was one of the first women to write in the genres of science fiction and fantasy, helping to pave the way for other female writers of speculative fiction. Her first story, “Shambleau,” was published in the November 1933 issue of Weird Tales and introduced readers to Northwest Smith, an interplanetary adventurer who appeared eleven times in “The Unique Magazine.” About a year later, Moore’s Jirel of Joiry debuted in Weird Tales. Appearing in a half-dozen stories between 1934 and 1939, Jirel was one of the first female protagonists of sword-and-sorcery fiction.

In 1936, Catherine met Henry Kuttner, another laborer for the pulp market. They married in 1940. Afterward, Moore and Kuttner collaborated on many stories, often using the pseudonyms “Lewis Padgett” or “Laurence O’Donnell.” Together, they created such classics as “Clash by Night,” “Mimsy Were the Borogroves,” “The Twonky,” and “Vintage Season.” From 1940 on, most of Moore’s efforts, collaborative or otherwise, appeared in Astounding Science-Fiction.

C. L. Moore’s first book, Judgment Night, a collection of stories from Astounding, was published by Gnome Press in 1952. Her most recent book, a collection by Moore and Henry Kuttner entitled Detour to Otherness, was published by Haffner Press.

Catherine Moore died on April 4, 1987.


 Call for Nominations

(Feb. 27, 2011) With Spring fast approaching, it’s time to get your Munsey Award nominations to PulpFest. All members of the pulp community, whether they plan to attend PulpFest 2011 or not, are welcome to nominate a deserving person for this year’s achievement award.

Named after Frank A. Munsey, the man who published the first all-fiction pulp magazine, the Munsey is presented annually to a deserving person who has given of himself or herself for the betterment of the pulp community, be it through disseminating knowledge about the pulps, publishing, or through other efforts to preserve and to foster interest in the pulp magazines we all love and enjoy. All members of the pulp community, excepting past winners of the Munsey or Lamont awards, are eligible for this prestigious prize.

David Saunders, the son of the legendary pulp artist Norman Saunders, has created a limited-edition print to serve as the Munsey. David’s work, pictured above, is a refreshing homage to classic pulp art that honors the entire pulp community and their common love of the purple prose of the bloody pulps.

If you have someone in mind that you feel worthy to receive this year’s Munsey Award, please let us know. Send the person’s name and a brief paragraph describing why you feel that person should be honored to Mike Chomko, 2217 W. Fairview Street, Allentown, PA 18104-6542 or to mike@pulpfest.com. The deadline for nominations is April 30, 2011. The recipient of the Munsey Award will be selected by a panel of judges consisting of recognized experts in the field of pulp literature. The award will be presented on Saturday evening, July 30 during the convention’s evening programming.


The First Hero Pulp

(March 12, 2011) Eighty years ago, on March 6th, 1931, the first issue of Street & Smith’s The Shadow Magazine appeared on American newsstands. The first modern single character or hero magazine, it revived a fiction format that had disappeared decades earlier with the demise of dime novels.

In the pages of The Shadow Magazine, wordsmith Walter B. Gibson refashioned the sinister narrator of CBS Radio’s The Detective Story Hour into the first dark hero, creating a crime-busting supersleuth who embodied the iconic power of classic melodrama villains like Dracula. Gibson’s novels also introduced the concept of super-crooks and super-crime, and became the template for hero pulps and scores of future comic book superheroes, many of which were created by devoted readers of The Shadow Magazine including Jerry Siegel, Bill Finger, Bob Kane, Jack Kirby and Stan Lee.

Earlier this month, Sanctum Books reprinted the original text of “The Living Shadow,” the first of Walter Gibson’s Shadow novels. Previous reprints of this novel had used the Ideal Library edition of Gibson’s initial Shadow adventure.

Join PulpFest 2011 over the last weekend of July as it celebrates the eightieth anniversary of The Shadow Magazine and the birth of the hero pulp. The festivities begin on Thursday night, July 28, with the showing of three film shorts featuring The Shadow’s first celluloid appearances. The first of these twenty-minute movies arrived in theaters while the second issue of The Shadow Magazine was still available on newsstands.  PulpFest 2011 runs through Sunday, July 31. To join the convention, please click here or the Registration button on our home page.


Pulp Con Season Begins

(April 3, 2011) In less than two weeks, the Windy City Pulp & Paper Convention opens up the pulp con season with a celebration of the 80th anniversary of Popular Publications and Dime Detective Magazine. Highlights of the convention will include a Popular Publications art show, sponsored by Illustration Magazine, an expanded dealers’ room featuring 140 tables of pulps and other popular culture materials, an extensive program of pulp-related films, and two great auctions. The Windy will run April 15th – 17th.

The PulpFest organizing committee will be well represented at Windy City. Be on the look out for Barry Traylor, Ed Hulse, Jack Cullers, and Mike Chomko. All four will be attending this year’s Windy.

Out on the West Coast, City Lights Booksellers and Publishers, in conjunction with the Cultural Services of the Consulate General of France and the Mechanics’ Institute Library, will be celebrating the 100th anniversary of the arch-villain Fantomas. The creation of Pierre Souvestre and Marcel Allain, the “Lord of Terror” will be celebrated April 6th – 9th in the city of San Francisco. Further information is available at Fantomas-By-The-Bay.

New York State will play host to a couple of ongoing pulp events in the months ahead. In upstate New York, Orange Pulp: The Pulp Magazine & Contemporary Culture, an exhibition showcasing Syracuse University’s world-class collection of pulp magazines and paintings will be running now through June 17th in the Bird Library and Schaffer Art Building of the university. Please visit the Syracuse University Library for further details. Also, on the second Saturday of each month, the Gotham Pulp Collectors Club meets at the Hudson Park Library in Manhattan’s West Village.

The pulp con season continues in May when a new event, Pulp Ark, will debut in Batesville, Arkansas. The focus of Pulp Ark will be on the writers, artists, and publishing companies working in the world of pulp today. Meet Ron Fortier of Airship 27, Joe Gentile of Moonstone Books, Tommy Hancock of Pro Se Press, and many other of the leading lights of “new pulp.” Pulp Ark will take place May 13th – 15th.

Up north in Toronto, Ontario, the 15th annual Fantastic Pulps Show & Sale will be held at the Lillian H. Smith branch of the Toronto Public Library from 10 AM to 5 PM on Saturday, May 14th. For further information on Canada’s premier pulp event, please visit the Girasol Collectables website.

Cinevent 43 will take place over Memorial Day weekend, May 27th – 30th at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Conference Center, the home for PulpFest 2011. In addition to 170 tables of movie-related collectibles such as posters, lobby cards, stills, pressbooks, DVDs, and 16 mm films, Cinevent features an extensive schedule of sound and silent films and a two-day auction of Hollywood movie posters. Please visit the convention’s website for further details.

ECOF 2011 will also be held over Memorial Day weekend, running May 26th – 29th in Minneapolis, MN. This Edgar Rice Burroughs-focused convention will feature guest appearances by a number of authors and artists, a dealers’ room, picnics and banquets, and more. For further information, please write to Rudy Sigmund and tell him that PulpFest sent you.

Longtime Robert E. Howard publishers Damon Sasser and Dennis McHaney will be the guests of honor at this year’s Robert E. Howard Days, held annually in Cross Plains, Texas. This year’s Howard Days will take place June 10th – 11th. You’ll find plenty of information about Howard Days and Robert E. Howard in general at the REHupa website.

Just a few days after Summer begins, Classicon 39 will take place at the University Quality Inn in Lansing, Michigan. There will be 35 tables and thousands of collectible pulp magazines, digests, and paperbacks available for sale or trade as well as pinups, original artwork, and other pop culture material. Please visit the Curious Book Shop for further information.

Of course, all these events are just a prelude to PulpFest 2011, Summer’s biggest and best pulp con. Why not register today?


PulpFest’s Guest of Honor

(April 7, 2011) The PulpFest organizing committee is pleased to announce that this year’s guest of honor is none other than Kent Allard. A veteran of the First World War and long rumored to be The Shadow, Mr. Allard will be feted in a variety of ways at our 2011 convention.

Through his reputation, Mr. Allard has long been linked to the publication that PulpFest 2011 will be saluting–Street & Smith’s The Shadow Magazine. Due to his advanced age—Mr. Allard turned 115 this year—it is not certain that he will be able to attend the 80th anniversary celebration of the cloaked character who dominated radio, pulp magazines and movies for many years. Whether or not he is able to attend, Mr. Allard feels that the dynamic programming planned for PulpFest 2011 will be an exceptional salute to the character many believe to be his alter ego.

For further information on Kent Allard, please visit our “Guest of Honor” page under “Programming.” And to learn more about the pulps and the creation of The Shadow Magazine, click on the “Walter B. Gibson” link under “Connections” along the right side of our home page.


Advertise in The Pulpster

(May 1, 2011) 2011 will mark the twentieth anniversary of The Pulpster. As usual, editor Tony Davis and designer Bill Lampkin will be putting together this amazing program book for PulpFest. All members of the convention will receive a complimentary copy of The Pulpster.

To help pay the bills, The Pulpster is glad to accept advertising. If you’d like to place an advertisement in this year’s issue, there’s still time to do it. However, the May 31st deadline for reserving advertising space is fast approaching. Rates, specifications, and other information can be found on The Pulpster page of our website. Your questions about advertising can be submitted to Ed Hulse at ed@pulpfest.com.

Another way to advertise at PulpFest is to donate material for our giveaway table. Last year, Fantasy and Science Fiction, Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, Galaxy Press, Engle Publishing, and Book Source Magazine all donated a variety of publications that were given away free to PulpFest attendees. Your donation will be acknowledged on our website and at the convention. If you’d like to offer something for our giveaway table, please contact Barry Traylor at barry@pulpfest.com.


FarmerCon Coming to PulpFest

(May 26, 2011) PulpFest 2011 is pleased to announce that FarmerCon VI will be held concurrently at our convention. An annual gathering for fans of Grand Master of Science Fiction Philip José Farmer, FarmerCon is rooted in Peoria, Illinois, the late author’s home town.

It all started soon after Phil had won the Grand Master award at the 2001 Nebula Awards ceremony. To honor the event, the Peoria Public Library staged a Living Legend Reception for the author. Farmer enthusiast Michael Croteau spread the word about the event through his website, The Official Philip José Farmer Home Page, resulting in fans coming to Peoria from across the country.

In 2006, no longer able to travel to science fiction conventions as they had done in the past, Farmer and his wife Bette decided it was time for the mountain to come to Mohammed. Thus FarmerCon was originally conceived to be a gathering of fans in Peoria, figuratively, and literally, right outside Phil’s back door. With programs, speeches, panels, dinners, and picnics at the author’s house, the convention quickly became a great success. After the passing of Phil and Bette Farmer in 2009, it was decided to take FarmerCon on the road, giving fans of the author an opportunity to meet other Farmer devotees unable to travel to Peoria. And by holding FarmerCon alongside events like PulpFest, Farmer fans get a weekend full of programming (including several Farmer-related presentations on Friday, July 29th) and a room full of pulp and book dealers to enjoy. It also keeps Philip José Farmer’s name in the public eye, reminding fans of his long and amazing body of work.

Please welcome FarmerCon VI to PulpFest 2011. We hope they’ll be back again and again.


2011 Munsey Award Nominees

(May 30, 2011) The PulpFest Organizing Committee is pleased to announce that the nomination process for the 2011 Munsey Award has been a tremendous success. Twenty-five people were nominated by pulp fans for this year’s award. The final nominee list has been pared down to the eleven individuals who received the most nominations during the last year.

The following nominees will be forwarded to a committee made up of all the living Lamont and Munsey Award winners who will select the person to receive the 2011 Munsey: William Contento, Win Scott Eckert, Stephen Haffner, Steve Miller, Matt Moring, Laurie Powers, Garyn Roberts, Phil Stephensen-Payne, Anthony Tollin, George Vanderburgh, and Dan Zimmer. You’ll find further details about each nominee on the 2011 Nominees page of our website.

The recipient of the 2011 Munsey Award, a limited edition print designed by artist and pulp enthusiast David Saunders, will be announced on July 30th as part of the Saturday evening programming schedule, open to all PulpFest 2011 registrants.


Dealers’ Room Filling Up

(June 5, 2011) As of today, approximately 25 tables remain available in the PulpFest 2011 dealers’ room. However, new registrations are arriving daily. So if you are interested in registering as a dealer for the “Summer’s Great Pulp Con,” time is growing short.

PulpFest 2011 will have approximately 100 eight-foot tables in its nearly 10,000 square-foot dealers’ room. Island tables cost $70 and wall tables are $80. All dealers are also required to purchase prepaid, three-day memberships for themselves and for any helpers accompanying them to the convention.

You’ll find a copy of our Dealer Registration Form by visiting the registration page of our website. For those interested in a three-day, prepaid membership, our Member Registration Form is available on the same page. See you at the end of July!


100 Years of Talbot Mundy

(June 10, 2011) When it comes to adventure fiction, one of its greatest practitioners was Talbot Mundy, born William Lancaster Gribbon in 1879. He began writing in his early thirties, following years of adventuring in India, Africa, and other parts of the world. Or so the story goes; much of his early life was romanticized over the years, largely by the author himself.

Mundy began writing professionally in 1911 with his first published piece, “A Transaction in Diamonds,” appearing in the February issue of Scrap Book, part of the Munsey line of magazines. Two months later marked his first appearance in Adventure magazine and he would be a fairly regular contributor to the magazine that Time Magazine called “The No. 1 Pulp” until his death in 1940.

Most of Mundy’s best fiction appeared in Adventure, including all of the Jimgrim stories and such important novels as “Om,” “The Devil’s Guard,” and “The Ivory Trail.” However, it was in Adventure’s “classier” cousin, Everybody‘s, that Talbot Mundy’s best known work, “King of the Khyber Rifles,” would be serialized, beginning with the May 1916 number. The Bobbs-Merrill book edition would appear in November that same year and prove to be an instant classic.

This summer, PulpFest will celebrate the 100th anniversary of Talbot Mundy’s first appearance in print with a showing of The Black Watch, a film adaptation of Mundy’s “King of the Khyber Rifles” and the first sound picture by famed movie director John Ford. Released by Fox Movietone News in 1929, the film stars Victor McLaglen as Captain Donald Gordon King and Myrna Loy as Yasmani, a descendant of Alexander the Great prophesied by her people to be a great conqueror. It also features both John Wayne and Randolph Scott in minor roles.

The Black Watch will be shown on Thursday, July 28th, beginning at 10:30 PM.


The Shadow on Radio

(June 14, 2011) Almost a full year before his first appearance in the pulps, The Shadow debuted as the mysterious narrator of The Detective Story Hour, a CBS radio program sponsored by Street & Smith. A ghostly sounding storyteller with a sinister voice, the character soon had listeners visiting their neighborhood newsstand to ask for “that Shadow detective magazine.” Bowing to popular demand, Street & Smith created The Shadow Magazine and the hero pulp genre was born.

On Friday evening, July 29th, popular culture historian Martin Grams continues PulpFest’‘s salute to the 80th anniversary of the first hero pulp by presenting a fascinating slide show concerning the radio program that inspired the pulp magazine. Pooling together twelve years of independent research, Martin will offer a fascinating view of the Shadow of the air waves and explain how The Shadow became one of the most recognized and well known radio programs of all time.

Martin Grams is the author of The Shadow: The History and Mystery of the Radio Program, 1930-1954. His presentation will start at 7:10 PM in the sixth floor programming area set aside for PulpFest 2011.


Wild American Pulp Artists

(June 19, 2011) What do illustrators Emery Clarke, Robert Harris, and Milton Luros have in common? They all worked for the pulp magazine industry and were born in 1911.

Clarke and Harris are remembered best for their front cover art on Doc Savage Magazine, while Luros is known for his detective and men’s adventure magazine covers. On Friday, July 29th, PulpFest will be celebrating the 100th anniversaries of the births of these artists with a look at their lives and works.

Wild American Pulp Artists will be presented at 8 PM in the sixth floor programming area set aside for PulpFest 2011. The speaker will be David Saunders, one of the leading experts on pulp art and the author of numerous articles on pulp artists for Illustration Magazine. He is also the author of Norman Saunders, a biography and appreciation of his father. His latest book is H. J. Ward, the most complete examination of the great Spicy cover artist. In addition to his writing, David is an accomplished artist whose work can be found in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, and other museums and public buildings. He has taught at Yale, Oberlin and other colleges worldwide and is the creator of PulpFest‘s Munsey Award.


Meet the New Fictioneers–Duanne Spurlock

(June 23, 2011) They were called scribes, word slingers, hacks and penny-a-worders. But perhaps the most favored term, especially among the men and women who labored for the bloody pulps, was fictioneer—a fiction writer, especially a prolific creator of commercial or pulp fiction.

Join PulpFest as we celebrate today’s fictioneers—the authors writing the new pulp fiction. Duane Spurlock will get things rolling on Friday afternoon, July 29th at 1 PM. Duane has written tales featuring Ki-Gor, the Jungle Lord for both Wild Cat Books and Airship 27. In “A Quiet Night in the Dark in La Plata, Missouri, 1942,” a surprise visitor shares an astonishing story with Doc Savage author Lester Dent that leads to deadly consequences in the writer’s quiet rural town. His humorous Western, “Pretty Polly,” has recently been turned into an e-book by Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Duane is also an award-winning book illustrator. You can read more about Duane’s work by visiting http://duanespurlock.blogspot.com/.

To start this year’s salute to The New Fictioneers, Duane will be reading from “Shalimar Bang and the Bad Luck Baedeker,” a contemporary pulp adventure about a gang of idiosyncratic heroes, and “Space Detective at Hell Gate,” which concerns a private eye who battles invaders from outer space that hope to make slaves of Earth’s population and steal the planet’s mineral wealth. He’ll also be available for questions, critiques, autographs, and old-fashioned schmoozing.


Meet the New Pulp Heroes of Wayne Reinagel

(June 24, 2011) The Shadow! Doc Savage! The Avenger! The Spider! G-8! Operator #5! Along with countless others, they were the great pulp heroes, the original crimefighters and adventurers who helped millions of Americans weather the grim years of The Great Depression and the dark days of World War II.

You’ll have a chance to meet and listen to Wayne Reinagel, the creator of four new champions of pulp justice—Doc Titan, The Darkness, Guardian, and The Scorpion on Friday, July 29th. Wayne is the writer and illustrator of Pulp Heroes—More Than Mortal, Pulp Heroes—Khan Dynasty, and Modern Marvels—Viktoriana. These “Steampulp” novels combine Victorian Age characters, such as Sherlock Holmes, Allan Quatermain, and the Frankenstein Monster with Wayne’s own Pulp Era heroes.

Beginning at 2 PM, Wayne will be reading from both Khan Dynasty and Modern Marvels as part of PulpFest‘s continuing salute to today’s word slingers known as The New Fictioneers. He’ll also be available for questions, critiques, autographs, and more.


The Pulpster Off to the Printer

(June 26, 2011) Tony Davis celebrates the twentieth anniversary of The Pulpster with yet another great issue of his award-winning magazine. The official program guide for PulpFest 2011, the new issue is 44 pages long and features a full color cover.

Like this year’s PulpFest, The Pulpster #20 celebrates the 80th anniversary of The Shadow Magazine with a front cover reproduction of the February 1, 1941 Shadow cover by superlative pulp artist Graves Gladney and its lead article, “The Shadows of 1931,” a look at the first five adventures of the character responsible for the birth of the hero pulp written by last year’s Munsey Award winner, Mike Chomko.

There are also several “firsts” in this year’s Pulpster. George Vanderburgh of Arkham House offers a previously unpublished story by English ghost story writer H. Russell Wakefield as well as excerpts from two manuscripts edited by H. P. Lovecraft. In “Return of the Man of Bronze,” Will Murray contributes an exclusive excerpt from his new Doc Savage adventure, The Desert Demons. The last “first” is the four-page supplement at the end of the issue provided by the good folks of FarmerCon, this year’s “guest convention” at PulpFest.

But there’s more: Don Hutchison recalls the visit of Spider illustrator John Fleming Gould to Pulpcon 19; Pulpster designer Bill Lampkin reviews William R. Cox’s stories about amateur detective Malachi Manatee from Dime Detective; Monte Herridge writes about H. Bedford-Jones’ Riley Dillon; Rex Layton unearths more information on L. Ron Hubbard just in time for the hundredth anniversary of the author’s birth. And Captain Midnight writer David Walker offers his views on new pulp fiction in “What? New Pulps? How Dare They!”

Except for “Sunday Only” attendees, all members (including supporting members) of PulpFest 2011 will receive a complimentary copy of The Pulpster #20.


FarmerCon at PulpFest

(June 28, 2011) As reported previously, PulpFest 2011 is pleased to welcome the members of FarmerCon VI to our convention. An annual gathering for fans of Grand Master of Science Fiction Philip José Farmer, please be sure to visit the PulpFest programming area on Friday evening, July 29th, at 10:30 PM for a salute to this celebrated author.

Michael Croteau, creator of The Official Philip José Farmer Home Page, will get things started by explaining the origins of FarmerCon and why it is happening this year at PulpFest. Following Michael’s introductory remarks, Win Scott Eckert will discuss the December 13, 1795 meteor strike in Wold Newton, England that resulted in a “nova of genetic splendor”—the Wold Newton Universe.

Changing gears a bit, Dr. Art Sippo will delve into A Feast Unknown, the author’s controversial novel that featured thinly-veiled versions of Tarzan and Doc Savage.

Tying into PulpFest‘s 80th anniversary salute to The Shadow Magazine, Rick Lai will investigate the character’s ties to the Wold Newton Family and other “secrets” that Farmer knew about the first great pulp hero, The Shadow. Will Murray will close out Friday evening’s programming by reminiscing about interviewing Philip José Farmer in 1990 for Starlog Magazine.


The New Pulp Fiction

(July 1, 2011) Over the last five years there has been a revival of interest in pulp fiction among some of today’s finest writers. With a growing number of publishers producing new pulp fiction, a genre most had thought dead or long forgotten is being reborn. The New Pulp Fiction panel will explore this renaissance and what it portends for the future of the pulp genre.

That contemporary pulp fiction is alive and healthy is evidenced by the six writers who will appear on The New Pulp Fiction panel–Bill Craig, creator of the Hardluck Hannigan seres; Wold Newton expert and popular yarn spinner Win Scott Eckert; Airship 27 and Black Coat Press author Greg Gick; Wayne Reinagel, creator of the Pulp Heroes and Modern Marvels series; Art Sippo, author of Sun Koh: Heir of Atlantis; and Duane Spurlock who has written “A Quiet Night in the Dark in La Plata, Missouri, 1942” and other stories.

The New Pulp Fiction will be moderated by Airship 27 editor-in-chief Ron Fortier, and will be held in PulpFest‘s sixth-floor programming area at 1 PM on Saturday afternoon, July 30th. Audience participation will very much be welcomed.


PulpFest Donations

(July 4, 2011) On this day when we celebrate our freedom, PulpFest 2011 would like to thank the following organizations for their generous contributions to our convention:

Book Source Magazine for sending copies of their magazine for free distribution at PulpFest.

Engle Publishing for sending copies of The Paper & Advertising Collectors’ Marketplace for distribution free of charge to PulpFest attendees.

Neil and Leigh Mechem of Girasol Collectables for their extremely generous donation of back numbers from their Pulp Doubles series (each featuring two adventures of The Spider) to be passed out to the first four-hundred PulpFest attendees.

Gordan Van Gelder and The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, the award-winning magazine that celebrated its sixtieth anniversary in 2009, for donating a number of back issues to give to our members.

We’d also like to thank Acorn Bookshop, Blue Jacket Books, Bonnett’s Bookstore, Dark Star Books, Duncan Books, The Dust Jacket, Karen Wickliff Books, and Mavericks Cards and Comics for their help in promoting our convention. Please try to patronize them during your visit to PulpFest.

Many thanks to cartoonist and publisher Michael Neno and Eric Johnson, Associate Curator of Rare Books and Manuscripts and an Assistant Professor at Ohio State University, for their help promoting PulpFest in the Columbus area, as well as Mark Trost for his work to promote us through the media.

The PulpFest organizing committee will be the official sponsor of the convention suite on Thursday night, July 28th. We are still looking for sponsors for both Friday and Saturday evening. If you or your organization would like to donate snacks and refreshments for either of these nights, please contact Jack Cullers at jack@pulpfest.com. Thank you.


Steampunk at PulpFest

(July 6, 2011) Join Munsey nominee Garyn G. Roberts at 7:30 PM on Saturday, July 30 in the PulpFest programming area for a discussion of Steampunk in the Days of Dime Novels and Pulp Magazines. A longtime pulp fan, Roberts teaches at Northwestern Michigan College and is the editor of The Prentice Hall Anthology of Science Fiction and Fantasy.

Garyn’s presentation will investigate the roots of what is today a very popular science fiction category–Steampunk. A throwback to the scientific romances that were characterized by zeppelins, steam men, monstrous dynamos, mad scientists and more, some of today’s leading writers of Steampunk include James P. Blaylock, William Gibson, China Miéville, Tim Powers, Cherie Priest, Neal Stephenson, and Bruce Sterling.

Professor Roberts will begin with a brief discussion of Jules Verne and H. G. Wells, the two authors who built the foundation of the movement. He will then turn to the dime novels and story papers of the late nineteenth century. These featured such proto-Steampunk characters as the Steam Man of the Prairies, Frank Reade, Jr., and Jack Wright. With the dawn of the twentieth century, pulp magazines began to supplant dime novels and story papers as the leading source for popular fiction. Early examples of Steampunk can be found in periodicals such as Argosy, The All-Story, Weird Tales, and in the numerous magazines published by Hugo Gernsback, the “father of science fiction,” including Amazing Stories, Science and Invention, Wonder Stories, and Air Wonder Stories.

Not only will Steampunk in the Days of Dime Novels and Pulp Magazines be informative and entertaining, it will be a feast for the eyes, featuring many front cover images from dime novels, story papers, and pulp magazines. It is not to be missed!


C. L. Moore, First Lady of Science Fantasy

(July 9, 2011) After editor Farnsworth Wright had finished reading an unsolicited manuscript entitled “Shambleau,” he closed the Weird Tales office in honor of “C. L. Moore Day.” For the next six years, Catherine Lucille Moore contributed her own brand of sensual and colorful adventures to “The Unique Magazine,” all featuring her interplanetary rogue Northwest Smith or Jirel of Joiry, one of the first female protagonists of sword-and-sorcery fiction.

A correspondent of H. P. Lovecraft and Robert Bloch, Moore married writer Henry Kuttner in 1940. Together, they collaborated on many stories. Among her rare non-collaborative efforts following her marriage are “Judgment Night,” “There Shall Be Darkness,”  “The Children’s Hour,” and “Vintage Season” for Astounding Science-Fiction, Startling Stories, Strange Stories, Thrilling Wonder Stories, and others.

Haffner Press has several volumes of C. L. Moore’s works in production, and editor/publisher Stephen Haffner will offer a 45-minute presentation on the life and career of this respected author, featuring many never-before-seen photographs, images of rare editions, and maybe a word from Ms. Moore herself. Stephen’s very informed picture of this pioneering writer of science fiction and fantasy will be presented on Friday, July 29th at 9:40 PM in the PulpFest programming area.


Win Scott Eckert and the Daughter of Bronze

(July 12, 2011) One of the founding members of the New Pulp movement, Win Scott Eckert is co-author (with Philip José Farmer) of the Wold Newton novel The Evil in Pemberley House, concerning the daughter of a certain bronze-skinned pulp hero. Win also edited and contributed to Myths for the Modern Age: Philip José Farmer’s Wold Newton Universe, nominated for a Locus Award in 2007. His latest release is the critically acclaimed Crossovers: A Secret Chronology of the World published by Black Coat Press. He has also written tales featuring many adventure and pulp hero characters, including Zorro, The Avenger, Captain Midnight, The Scarlet Pimpernel, The Green Hornet, and Fu Manchu.

As part of PulpFest’s continuing salute to today’s word slingers known as The New Fictioneers, Win will be reading from The Evil in Pemberley House and “Happy Death Men,” his contribution to Moonstone Books’ forthcoming The Avenger: The Justice Inc. Files. He’ll also be available for questions, critiques, autographs, etc. So be sure to join Win Scott Eckert on Friday, July 29th, beginning at 3 PM. In the meantime, you can find him on the web at www.winscotteckert.com.


Hardluck Hannigan and Bill Craig

(July 13, 2011) One of today’s more prolific writers of new pulp fiction is Bill Craig, an author whose earliest published work was Valley of Death, the first of five modern adventure thrillers featuring Chicago police detective Jack Riley and his reporter girlfriend Moria Clark.

Bill’s most popular character is Mike “Hardluck” Hannigan. A throw-back to the hero pulps of the thirties and forties, featuring slam bang action and rollicking adventure, Hannigan is a soldier of fortune with the worst luck imaginable.

Craig is also the author of the Sam Decker, P. I. series  and the noir thriller, The Butterfly Tattoo. He credits Lester Dent and Walter B. Gibson, the creators of Doc Savage and The Shadow, as the two greatest influences on his writing style.

On Saturday, July 30th at 2:30 PM, Bill Craig will be reading from The Golden Scorpion, the seventh volume in The Fantastic Adventures of Hardluck Hannigan as part of PulpFest‘s continuing salute to The New Fictioneers. He’ll also be available for questions, critiques, autographs, and more.


Granddaughters of the Pulps

(July 14, 2011) Their names are legendary—Frederick C. Davis, creator of Operator #5, The Moon Man, and a slew of detective-pulp heroes; Norvell W. Page, who wrote over 100,000 words per month for the pulps, including more than ninety novels featuring The Spider, the Master of Men; Paul S. Powers, creator of the Sonny Tabor and Kid Wolf stories for Street & Smith’s Wild West Weekly who wrote over four hundred pulp yarns; and Major Malcolm Wheeler-Nicholson who, after writing well over one hundred adventure tales for a wide variety of magazines, went on to create the modern comic book.

These men all labored mightily in the pulp field, churning out fiction for a penny or two a word in order to support themselves and their families. But as the pulps died, they turned to other fields, leaving behind their rough paper days. For some, the pulps were forgotten or a faint memory of bygone days. Their children, grandchildren, nieces, and nephews may have known that these men had been writers, but of those pulp era days, little was remembered or mentioned.

But the memories of those long-gone days were not completely forgotten, thanks to the efforts of pulp collectors and researchers working to unearth the history of the pulp era. It was through such efforts that the descendents of such pulp greats as Davis, Page, Powers, and Wheeler-Nicholson learned of their forebears’ abundant labors in the pulp vineyard.

PulpFest 2011 is pleased to offer Granddaughters of the Pulps, a panel featuring four of the descendents of the aforementioned authors. Elizabeth Bissette, Karen Davis Cunningham, Laurie Powers, and Nicky Wheeler-Nicholson Brown will speak about these four pulp greats and their families. They will also discuss their own personal searches to collect what have become important family heirlooms—the pulps that featured their ancestors’ works. Moderated by Blood ‘n’ Thunder editor Ed Hulse, Granddaughters of the Pulps will take place at 8:50 PM on Friday, July 29th in the PulpFest programming area.

Elizabeth Bissette is the great-niece of Norvell W. Page, one of the most prolific pulpsters, best known for his Spider novels. A critically acclaimed actress, director, playwright, and producer of multimedia programs, Elizabeth is also a singer/songwriter, rhythm guitarist, fine artist, and an art and music writer for Fine Art Magazine and a number of music websites. She is currently working on adaptations of Beowulf and the pulp character The Purple Scar for Airship 27 and is the creator of the Norvell Page Page website. Elizabeth lives in Bowling Green, Kentucky.

Karen Davis Cunningham is the granddaughter of author Frederick C. Davis. While she grew up reading many of her grandfather’s mystery novels, she knew little about his pulp career until many years after he’d passed away. When she read an article that suggested he’d written over one thousand pulp stories, she began a quest to find out what they were. Her search brought her to her first Pulpcon in Dayton, Ohio in 2000, where she was sucked into the vortex and has not been able to escape since. In a parallel life out in the real world, she teaches conflict management at Kent State University, and lives with her husband Tom, four cats, Zeke the wonderdog, and has two grown children who are in the process of leaving the nest, but somehow keep finding their way back.

Laurie Powers is the granddaughter of Paul S. Powers, a prolific pulp fiction writer who wrote over 400 stories for such rough paper magazines as Wild West Weekly, Weird Tales, Thrilling Western, and Texas Rangers. Later, Paul wrote a successful and acclaimed Western novel, Doc Dillahay. Laurie did not know of her grandfather’s career as a pulp fiction writer until 1999 when she discovered his contributions to Wild West Weekly through an Internet search. Later that same year, she reunited with Paul’s daughter Pat, who gave Laurie her grandfather’s personal papers. In there was a manuscript, Pulp Writer: Twenty Years in the American Grub Street, Paul’s memoir of being a pulp fiction writer, which was eventually published in 2007.

Laurie recently edited a new collection of Paul Powers’ Western stories, Riding the Pulp Trail, which will be available for sale at PulpFest 2011. She is a writer and editor, creator of the Laurie’s Wild West blog, and lives in Los Angeles.

Nicky Wheeler-Nicholson Brown is the granddaughter of Major Malcolm Wheeler-Nicholson, prolific pulp fiction writer, founder of DC Comics, military intelligence office, and inventor being among his many accomplishments. Nicky has been actively researching her grandfather’s life and work since 1997. She is a writer, editor and publisher, co-owning Berkshire Media Artists with experience in audio, film, animation, and book publishing. Nicky holds a Master’s Degree in Classical Greek Mythology. Her published work includes articles on the environment, Native American elders, comic book history and scripts for theatre and animated film. Nicky’s most recent published work is, as an editor and contributor to, Oil and Water and Other Things That Don’t Mix, an anthology to benefit environmental groups on the Gulf Coast, and an article about “The Major” for The Overstreet Comic Book Price Guide. She fell madly in love with the “true” pulp genre when she bought her first pulps featuring The Major’s byline—“The Czarina’s Pearls,” (Argosy, July 19 and 26, 1930). With the determination of Nancy Drew, she has been pursuing the elusive trail of collecting all her grandfather’s works ever since.

Unfortunately, Elizabeth Bissette was unable to attend PulpFest 2011.


Walter B. Gibson and The Shadow

(July 17, 2011) Following the Thursday-night screening of three rare 1931-32 “Shadow Detective” featurettes and Martin Grams’ Friday-night presentation on the character’s radio incarnation, PulpFest continues its 80th-anniversary celebration of The Shadow Magazine with an all-star panel that will discuss the series and its primary author, Walter B. Gibson.

Joining us for what promises to be a lively and informative discussion will be J. Randolph Cox, long-time editor of Dime Novel Round-Up and author of Man of Magic and Mystery: A Guide to the Work of Walter B. Gibson; Will Murray, novelist, historian, and author of The Duende History of The Shadow Magazine; and Anthony Tollin, contributing editor to Gibson’s The Shadow Scrapbook and publisher of the Sanctum Books Shadow reprints. All three knew Walter Gibson well and will be able to give the PulpFest audience rare insights into the man’s personality, in addition to details and critiques of his work.

Between 1931 and 1949 Walter B. Gibson wrote a staggering 283 Shadow yarns—most of them running between 50,000 and 60,000 words—for a total of roughly fifteen million words. His achievement in fleshing out a character that, previously, was just a voice on the radio is nothing short of monumental in the history of American popular culture. Gibson rode the whirlwind whipped up by his own success, supplying The Shadow Magazine with novel-length stories at the rate of two per month for ten solid years before World War II paper shortages forced the bi-weekly magazine back to monthly frequency. But the indefatigable Gibson, not about to let the grass grow under his feet, filled his spare time with the writing of scripts for The Shadow’s comic-book adventures.

Our panelists will touch on Gibson’s influences, accomplishments and working methods. Blood ‘n’ Thunder editor Ed Hulse, who has himself written at some length about The Shadow, will moderate the panel, which is scheduled to get underway at 8:20 p.m. on Saturday.


Edmond Hamilton: From Ohio to the Stars

(July 20, 2011) Best known to many fans as the creator of Captain Future, Edmond Hamilton was actually one of the first full-time writers of science fiction for the pulps. He pioneered and popularized many themes that later became staples of modern science fiction.

On Thursday evening, July 28th, at Ohio State University, editor and publisher Stephen Haffner will be talking about this popular author’s work for such avidly collected pulps as Weird Tales, Amazing Stories, and Wonder Stories. Haffner’s presentation will include several vintage, rarely exhibited photographs of Hamilton and his contemporaries. A collection of Hamilton first editions will also be on display.

“Edmond Hamilton: From Ohio to the Stars” will take place at 6:30 PM in Room 150A/B in the Thompson Library at the Ohio State campus. The address is 1858 Neil Avenue, Columbus, OH 43210. For directions from the Ramada Plaza, click here.


PulpFest 2011 Begins Thursday

(July 22, 2011) PulpFest 2011 will begin on Thursday evening, July 28th, with a special preview night, featuring three rarely seen Shadow short subjects and a film adaptation of Talbot Mundy’s King of the Khyber Rifles. Refreshments will also be served in the convention’s hospitality suite, complements of the PulpFest organizing committee.

We have already surpassed last year’s show both in our number of pre-registrations and rooms booked at the hotel. Indications are that this year’s con will be our biggest yet. We are still receiving registrations every day, many from people who have never attended PulpFest before. If you’ve been thinking about attending, but still haven’t pulled the trigger, you probably should call the hotel and make your reservation today.

The hotel’s special room rate of $79 per night plus tax will continue through the start of the convention. You can make a reservation by calling the hotel at 1-877-609-6086 or 1-614-846-0300. Be sure to mention PulpFest to get the special convention rate when placing your reservation. For further details, visit the Our Hotel page under “The Details.”

The Ramada Plaza Hotel and Conference Center is located just off Exit 116 of I-71, about ten minutes north of downtown Columbus, Ohio. Heading north on I-71, get off at Exit 116, the Morse Road exit. Turn left onto Morse Road. Follow Morse until you get to Sinclair Road. Turn right onto Sinclair Road. The hotel is at 4900 Sinclair Road.

Heading south on I-71, get off at Exit 116, the Sinclair Road exit. Turn right onto Sinclair Road and follow to the Ramada Plaza. For those who would like a map to get to the hotel, click here.

From 4 PM to 11 PM on Thursday, the dealers’ room will be open for exhibitors to set up their displays. During set-up, dealers are asked to arrange their displays and, upon completion, cover them up and then depart the room. No buying, selling, or trading will be permitted during Thursday’s set-up. Dealers should please refrain from all such activity.

Early registration for the general membership will also take place on Thursday, beginning at 6 PM at a location to be determined. All members, dealers included, can pick up their registration packets at this time. For those of you who have not yet registered for PulpFest, Thursday evening will be an ideal time to do so. Three-day memberships will be available for $35. Single day memberships costing $15 per day will also be available. Please visit our Registration page for further details.

The dealers’ room will open to all members on Friday, July 29th at 9 AM and remain open until 5 PM. It will be open from 9 AM to 5 PM on Saturday and from 10 AM to 2 PM on Sunday. Dealers will be allowed to enter the room approximately 15 minutes prior to opening in order to prepare their displays.

One autographed copy of Paul Malmont’s new book, The Astounding, the Amazing, and the Unknown: A Novel, will be given away as a door prize on both Friday and Saturday. Many thanks to Paul for his generous donation.

There will be a full schedule of programming on Friday and Saturday evenings from 7 PM until about midnight. There will also be several presentations during the daytime hours. Please visit our Programming page for further details.

The PulpFest organizing committee is looking for volunteers to serve as hospitality suite hosts on Friday and Saturday evenings. If you are willing, please write to jack@pulpfest.com.

All PulpFest attendees will be able to submit material for inclusion in the Saturday Night Auction. For additional information, please visit our Auctions page under “Programming” or contact Barry Traylor via email at barry@pulpfest.com.

The third annual Munsey Breakfast will take place on Sunday, July 31st, beginning at 9 AM. This will be an informal meal in the hotel’s restaurant to celebrate this year’s Munsey Award winner and your PulpFest experience. All convention attendees are welcome to attend.

For those attendees who would like to ship their purchases to their homes, PulpFest 2011 has arranged for a local UPS provider to be available at the hotel on Sunday, July 31st. UPS service is also available through a Staples store located near the hotel. Further information is available on our FAQ  page.

The entire PulpFest 2011 organizing committee–Mike Chomko, Jack Cullers, Ed Hulse, and Barry Traylor–is looking forward to seeing you all in just a few days. Have a safe trip to Columbus.


The Shadow at 80!

(July 24, 2011) Just one last  reminder that PulpFest 2011 is not only celebrating the 80th anniversary of the launching of  The Shadow Magazine, but also the 80th anniversary of The Shadow’s celluloid debut. The character was featured in six short subjects released to theaters between the summer of 1931 and the spring of 1932. PulpFest, in conjunction with Anthony Tollin’s Sanctum Books, has obtained copies of three Shadow featurettes—including the first—and will kick off its anniversary celebration of The Shadow Magazine by screening them on Thursday evening, July 28th, beginning at 9 PM.

Early arrivals to PulpFest will have a chance to see the first Shadow featurette, A Burglar to the Rescue, seen only one other time since its 1931 debut. Two Shadow shorts from 1932, The Circus Show-Up and House of Mystery, will also be shown. PulpFest 2011 attendees will be the first people to have seen both 1932 films since their original theatrical engagements.

PulpFest‘s Shadow programming will continue on Friday evening with a presentation concerning “The Shadow on Radio” offered by popular culture historian Martin Grams. Later, Rick Lai will discuss the character’s ties to the Wold Newton Family and other “secrets” that science-fiction Grand Master Philip José Farmer knew about the first great pulp hero.

On Saturday evening, July 30th, Blood ‘n’ Thunder editor Ed Hulse will moderate a panel presentation entitled “Walter B. Gibson and The Shadow.” Joining Ed will be Randy Cox, author of Man of Magic and Mystery: A Guide to the Work of Walter B. Gibson, Will Murray, author of The Duende History of The Shadow Magazine, and Anthony Tollin, co-author with Walter B. Gibson of The Shadow Scrapbook. All three panelists not only wrote books about The Shadow, but personally knew the character’s creator, Walter B. Gibson.

And, of course, there is still the hope that Mr. Kent Allard, who has longed been rumored to be The Shadow, the Dark Avenger whose exploits were recorded in The Shadow Magazine by Walter B. Gibson and others, will still be able to attend PulpFest 2011. Mr. Allard is turning 115 this year and his plans are still up in the air. Whether or not he is able to attend, Mr. Allard feels that the dynamic programming planned for PulpFest 2011 will be an exceptional salute to the character with whom he has long been associated. He wishes us all a very successful convention.


Safe Journey

(July 27, 2011) PulpFest 2011 will begin tomorrow, July 28th. Dealer set-up will take place from 4 PM to 11 PM. Early registration will begin at 6 PM at a location to be determined. Information will be available in the hotel lobby.

To all of you who will be attending PulpFest, we look forward to seeing you. Please have a safe journey to Columbus.

Barry Traylor, Ed Hulse, Jack Cullers, and Mike Chomko, your PulpFest Organizing Committee.


PulpFest 2011 to Begin!

(July 28, 2011) This evening at 9 PM, PulpFest 2011 will begin with the first showing in nearly eighty years of three short subjects featuring The Shadow. These will be shown in the Ramada Plaza’s sixth floor PulpFest programming area. John Ford’s film adaptation of Talbot Mundy’s King of the Khyber Rifles, The Black Watch, will follow at 10:30 PM.

For early arrivals, Stephen Haffner will present “Edmond Hamilton: From Ohio to the Stars,” a discussion of the life and work of the science fiction great. Stephen’s presentation will take place at 6:30 PM at Ohio State University, located about seven miles south of the Ramada Plaza.

The PulpFest dealer room will open for business beginning at 9 AM on Friday, July 29th. You can register early for what is typically a feeding frenzy as book and pulp collectors scour the room searching for this or that long elusive volume. All you have to do is arrive by Thursday evening at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Conference Center and sign up for the convention beginning at 6 PM. Early registration will be held in the convention hospitality suite on the sixth floor of the hotel.

Admission to the show is $15 per day or $35 for all three days, allowing entry to all convention activities. The general public is very much welcome to attend.


PulpFest 2011 is Underway!

(July 29, 2011) PulpFest 2011 got underway on Thursday evening with a film program featuring three rare Shadow short subjects and a welcoming party sponsored by the convention’s organizing committee. Then, just fifteen minutes ago, the doors to the PulpFest dealers’ room opened.

Upon entry to the nearly 10,000 square foot dealers’ room, collectors were greeted by more than 100 tables filled with pulps, books, original artwork, vintage comics, films, and other popular culture collectibles. And the feeding frenzy began!

There’s still plenty of time to join in on the fun. The dealers’ room will be open until 5 PM on Friday and from 9 AM to 5 PM on Saturday. Sunday will be a bit shorter, from 10 AM to 2 PM. Friday’s programming schedule includes three author readings in the afternoon. The evening programming will begin at 7 PM. There will be presentations concerning the Shadow on radio, pulp illustrators, science-fiction author C. L. Moore, and a panel featuring four women whose grandfathers were writers for the pulp magazine industry.

One autographed copy of Paul Malmont’s new book, The Astounding, the Amazing, and the Unknown: A Novel, will be given away as a door prize to a lucky attendee on both Friday and Saturday. Many thanks to Paul for his generous donation.

Saturday’s programming will include a panel on “new pulp fiction” and one more author reading during the afternoon. On Saturday evening starting at 7 PM, there will be a short business meeting followed by the presentation of the annual Munsey Award. A presentation on steampunk, a panel concerning the creation of The Shadow, and an auction will conclude the night’s festivities.

On Sunday morning beginning at 9 AM, there will be an informal breakfast in the hotel’s restaurant to celebrate this year’s Munsey winner and your PulpFest experience. All convention attendees are welcome to attend.

Admission to the convention is $15 per day or $35 for all three days, allowing entry to all convention activities. The general public is very much welcome to attend.


PulpFest 2011 Continues

(July 30, 2011) Today, PulpFest 2011 continues its salute to the 80th anniversary of The Shadow magazine with a panel presentation on Walter B. Gibson and The Shadow. Moderator Ed Hulse will be joined by Shadow experts Randy Cox, Will Murray, and Anthony Tollin. All three panelists were friends of The Shadow’s creator, Walter B. Gibson, and have written books about the author and his creation. It is scheduled for 8:20 PM.

Our evening programming will also feature the presentation of the annual Munsey Award, an examination of the pulp and dime novel origins of steampunk, and an auction. It all begins at 7 PM with a short business meeting.

During the afternoon hours, beginning at 1 PM, there will be a forum concerning “new pulp fiction,” hosted by Ron Fortier of Airship 27, and a reading by Bill Craig, creator of Hardluck Hannigan and other characters. Also, one autographed copy of Paul Malmont’s new book, The Astounding, the Amazing, and the Unknown: A Novel, will be given away as a door prize to a lucky attendee. Many thanks to Paul for his generous donation.

For those of you who were unable to attend the Thursday evening premier of the three Shadow short subjects from 1931-32, PulpFest will be offering a repeat showing of the films following the conclusion of tonight’s auction.

There’s still time to join the fun. The dealers’ room will be open today from 9 AM to 5 PM and from 10 AM to 2 PM on Sunday. Admission to PulpFest is $15 for Saturday and $5 for Sunday.


Munsey Goes to Anthony Tollin

(July 31, 2011) On Saturday, July 30, Anthony Tollin was named the winner of the 2011 Munsey Award. Nominated by members of the general pulp community, Tony was selected by a panel of judges consisting of all the living Lamont and Munsey Award winners. The award is a fine art print of a painting by David Saunders, created by Dan Zimmer.

It is very appropriate that in the year that we celebrate the 80th anniversary of The Shadow magazine, that Anthony should be the recipient of the Munsey. As of this month, he had reprinted over one hundred adventures of The Shadow, the character created by Walter B. Gibson for the Street & Smith pulp chain.

It was Anthony who worked to convince Conde Nast to authorize reprints of The Shadow, Doc Savage, The Avenger, and The Whisperer. Tony’s regularly issued Sanctum Books are the most popular pulp reprints of our day. Every month, we get to enjoy some of the pulp’s greatest heroes, coupled with informative articles about the authors and artists, the sources for the stories and the pop culture that they inspired. These books continue to serve as a major gateway for new people to enter the pulp-collecting hobby. Additionally, Tony was the co-author with Walter Gibson of The Shadow Scrapbook and assembled and introduced numerous recorded collections of pulp-related radio programs issued by Radio Spirits. He was also involved with several comic book interpretations of the great pulp heroes. Tony became a lifelong fan of The Shadow as a child, when his father told him about “the invisible crimefighter who taunted his enemies from the darkness.”

Nominations are now being accepted for the 2012 Munsey Award. If you have someone in mind that you feel worthy to receive the Munsey Award, please let us know. Send the person’s name and a brief paragraph describing why you feel that person should be honored to Mike Chomko, 2217 W. Fairview Street, Allentown, PA 18104-6542 or to mike@pulpfest.com. Previous winners of the Lamont Award or the Munsey Award are not eligible for the award. The deadline for nominations is April 30, 2012.


Many Thanks

(August 5, 2011) The PulpFest Organizing Committee would like to thank the following people and organizations whose invaluable assistance helped to make PulpFest 2011 a tremendous success. We could not do it without you:

Our all-volunteer staff, Maura Childers, Sam Childers, Aaron Cullers, Jack Cullers, Sally Cullers, and Samantha Cullers; our panelists, presenters, and auctioneers, Nicky Brown Wheeler-Nicholson, Randy Cox, Bill Craig, Michael Croteau, Karen Davis Cunningham, Win Scott Eckert, Ron Fortier, Greg Gick, Martin Grams, John Gunnison, Stephen Haffner, Ed Hulse, Rick Lai, Will Murray, Laurie Powers, Wayne Reinagel, Garyn Roberts, Joe Saine, David Saunders, Dr. Art Sippo, Duane Spurlock, and Anthony Tollin; our hospitality suite sponsors, Rusty Burke and the Robert E. Howard Foundation and Michael Croteau and Win Scott Eckert of Meteor Press, and the co-sponsor of our Shadow short subject presentation, Sanctum Books; our behind-the-scenes help, Mike Chomko, Chris Kalb, Lohr McKinstry, Michael Neno, Rick and Renee Thomas (who baked the great PulpFest cakes), Barry Traylor, Mark Trost, and Dan Zimmer; and Meri Lynne Stumbo, Beth Sweet, and the rest of the staff at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Convention Center.

The Organizing Committee would also like to thank the people who helped to create The Pulpster #20:

Tony Davis and Bill Lampkin, plus Peter Chomko, Monte Herridge, Don Hutchison, Rex Layton, John Locke, David Rajchel, George Vanderburgh, David Walker, and the magazine’s sponsors–Black Dog Books, Haffner Press, Paul Malmont (who also donated our door prizes),  Origins Game Fair, The Pulp Factory, and Recoverings.

Many thanks as well to the nominators and Lamont Award and Munsey Award  winners who helped to select the winner of this year’s winner, Anthony Tollin. Congratulations to our winner.

Finally, thanks to all of the conventions, book and paper fairs, websites, magazines, newspapers, and other media outlets that helped to promote our show as well as the dealers, attending members and supporting members of PulpFest 2011. It was due to your encouragement and support that our convention was a great success. We hope to see you all back in  the summer of 2012 along with a good many newcomers for PulpFest 2012. Details will be forthcoming in the months ahead. So please subscribe to our PulpFest email list through the small gray box found along the right side of our home page.

If you’d like to volunteer to help with PulpFest 2012, please email Mike Chomko, Jack Cullers, Ed Hulse, or Barry Traylor.


Biggest PulpFest Yet

(Sept. 18, 2011) The PulpFest organizing committee would like to thank all of our members for making PulpFest 2011 our most successful convention to date. For the first time, a Summer pulp con topped four hundred people in attendance. PulpFest is very proud of that accomplishment.

Thanks as well to all those who have taken the time to review PulpFest 2011 both online and off. This includes Nicky Brown Wheeler-Nicholson writing on her website devoted to her grandfather, Major Malcolm Wheeler-Nicholson, Randy Cox in Dime Novel Round-Up, Ron Fortier of Airship 27 on All Pulp, Walker Martin on Mystery*File, Laurie Powers on Laurie’s Wild West, and Duane Spurlock writing on his Pulp Rack blog. You can also read about PulpFest from the viewpoint of first time attendees by visiting the Collectors Society Message Boards and She Never Slept.com where Sean Lewis, a FarmerCon attendee, has reported on his PulpFest experience. Michael Neno has also posted a photographic diary of PulpFest on his Eventized blog under PulpFest Day One and More PulpFest 2011 Pics, while Ric Croxton has posted a multi-part PulpFest Special on his The Book Cave podcast. Still others have shared photographs and memories of PulpFest on various newsgroups, blogs, and so on.

PulpFest 2012 is still many months away, but there are plenty of other conventions to attend. You’ll be able to read about them here in the weeks to come. So please keep visiting our website.

 

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PulpFest 2011 Flyers and Logo

A big part of PulpFest 2011’s success was due to its promotional materials. Below you’ll find our main circular from 2011 in PDF format in both color and black and white. If you would like to download either file, please click on its image.

You can also download a jpeg of our main flyer or 2011 logo, both designed by Chris Kalb.

For those PulpFest enthusiasts who crave a little variety, Chris also created a couple more versions of our 2011 flyers, both featuring a Shadow theme. The first two files of each alternate are PDFs, while the third is a jpeg.

The Shadow is copyright 2011 and is a registered trademark of Advance Magazines Publishers Inc./The Conde Nast Publicaitons. Many thanks to Chris Kalb for creating all three versions of our 2011 PulpFest flyers.

For questions about promoting PulpFest or about our website, please contact Mike Chomko at mike@pulpfest.com.

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PulpFest 2011 took place at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Conference Center from July 28 through July 31, 2011. With a membership roster of 435, it was the best attended summer pulp con in history. In the following pages, you’ll be able to read several convention reports from sources such as Dime Novel Round-Up and Mystery*File. You’ll also be able to read many of the posts that were released on the convention’s website in the time leading up to the 2011 convention. In them, you’ll learn about the wide-ranging programming of the third PulpFest, the way the convention was promoted, the addition of FarmerCon, and much, much more.

PulpFest 2011 dealers’ room. Photograph by Michael Neno.

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Below is a behind-the-scenes look at the creation of PulpFest 2010, told through the posts that originally appeared on the convention’s home page during 2009 and 2010. They began just a few weeks following the inaugural PulpFest, when the organizing committee started to plan, arrange, and promote the 2010 convention.

Mark Your Calendars…

PulpFest 2010 continues the proud tradition of a summer pulp con, now in its 39th year. A new and improved version of the venerable convention catering to fans and collectors of vintage popular fiction, join us…

Friday, July 30th – Sunday, August 1st
at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Convention Center
in Columbus, Ohio

For further details on a variety of topics including the Munsey Award, please explore our website. We hope to see you at the end of July 2010.


Promotional Activities

PulpFest is all about spreading the word about pulps and the people who enjoy them. Which is why our convention takes pride in supporting the efforts of other conventions involved in our hobby. Throughout the year, PulpFest regularly posts news about other pulp cons, urging its members to support those shows that celebrate the pulps and their great stories.

At a Hotel Near You…

Although PulpFest 2010 is nearly nine months away, there could very well be a pulp con coming up, right in your home town. The first two Saturdays of November will feature three pulp-related shows, scattered across the United States.

Classicon 36 will be held in Lansing, Michigan on November 7. Ray Walsh’s long-running show features pulps, paperbacks, comics, calendars, pin-ups, original artwork and more. There will be 35 tables of goodies available. For further information, contact Ray at his Curious Book Shop in East Lansing, MI.

Down in Bordentown, New Jersey, just off Exit 7 of the Turnpike, you’ll find about three dozen tables filled with rare pulp magazines, vintage paperbacks, pulp reprints and movie collectibles. Rich Harvey has been putting on this one-day show for about ten years and it’s a blast. For further details about Pulp Adventurecon, please visit the Bold Venture Press website or drop Rich an email.  

Heading west to Chandler, Arizona will get you to the twelfth edition of Doc Con. This small convention, held annually on the second Saturday of November, attracts fans from around the country for a weekend of Doc Savage events as well as discussions and camaraderie. The 75th anniversary of Pat Savage, the man of bronze’s beautiful cousin, will be celebrated at this year’s Doc Con.

Back east in the Big Apple, on the second Saturday of each and every month, the Gotham Pulp Collectors Club will hold their regular meeting at the Hudson Park Library in Manhattan. Visit their website or write to info@gothampulpcollectors.com for further details.

These four events are just the icing on the cake. There are plenty of other related shows all over the country, from IlluXCon in Altoona, Pennsylvania and the VAComicon in Richmond, Virginia to the Buckeye Book Fair in Wooster, Ohio and the New England Crimebake in Dedham, Massachusetts. So you see, there are plenty of PulpFest-related events all over the place. Maybe you’ll find one right in your own back yard. And while you’re there, be sure to pick up one of the spanking new PulpFest 2010 flyers, with the latest information on “The Summer’s Leading Pulp Convention.”

And don’t forget, the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention is right around the corner. Help to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Adventure Magazine by attending this Chicago pulp con, April 23-25, 2010.

Happy Pulp Year!

2010 is already shaping up to be a great year for pulp fiction. We’ll have another full year of not only Doc Savage and The Shadow from Sanctum Books, but also quarterly issues of The Avenger and The Whisperer. From Girasol Collectables, there will be twelve new Spider pulp replicas as well as eight adventures of The Master of Men in the popular doubles format. Girasol will also be publishing two facsimile editions collecting all of H. P. Lovecraft’s output for Weird Tales magazine. John Gunnison’s Adventure House will have six more issues of High Adventure–fast approaching its 20th anniversary–four issues of G-8 and His Battle Aces, about three dozen pulp replicas, and more. And of course, there will be plenty of other books to choose from with the offerings from Age of Aces Books, the award-winning Altus Press, Black Dog Books, Pulpville Press, and other small publishers.    

And for those of you who enjoy pulp fiction written in the here and now, there will be many exciting offerings available from publishers both small and large. Airship 27, in association with Cornerstone Books, will have new stories featuring Sherlock Holmes, Dan Fowler, the Green Lama, Captain Hazzard and other exciting heroes from the world of pulps and fiction magazines. You’ll also be able to thrill to new stories of Ki-Gor the Jungle Lord, the Moon Man, Doctor Satan and others, thanks to Ron Hanna’s Wildcat Books. New tales of Johnston McCulley’s Zorro, Norvell Page’s The Spider, the Domino Lady, and other great heroes will be forthcoming from Moonstone Books. And the folks at Leisure Books will be offering three more of the thrilling adventures of Gabriel Hunt in the months ahead.

But let’s not forget about the exciting pulp convention schedule for 2010. Starting things off will be the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention, not only celebrating its tenth year, but also the 100th anniversary of the birth of Adventure magazine. The Spring edition of Classicon is next, marking its 37th appearance in the city of Lansing, Michigan. On Saturday, May 8th, the 14th edition of Canada’s premier pulp event takes place at the Lillian H. Smith branch of the Toronto Public Library. Join our pulp-loving friends north of the border for the Fantastic Pulps Show & Sale (you can download a color flyer for the Toronto show by clicking on the image above). Of course, all these events will all be leading up to PulpFest, summertime’s great pulp con. Why not register today?

Upcoming Events

Many thanks to the folks who run the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention for not only putting on a great show, but for allowing PulpFest’’s Ed Hulse to talk about our convention during a break in the action at the Westin Lombard. The Windy’s support over the last two years has been tremendous.

If you’re north of the border on Saturday, May 8th, why not stop by the Lillian H. Smith branch of the Toronto Public Library for the 14th edition of Canada’s premier pulp event, the Fantastic Pulps Show & Sale? This small, but pulp specific event always features lots of great stuff for the collector and the curious alike. For further information, please write to Girasol Collectables at info@girasolcollectables.com.

Also held at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Conference Center, the home for PulpFest 2010, Cinevent 42 will take place during Memorial Day weekend, May 28-31. In addition to 170 tables of movie-related collectibles such as posters, lobby cards, stills, pressbooks, DVDs, and 16 mm films, Cinevent features an extensive schedule of sound and silent films and a two-day auction of Hollywood movie posters. Please visit the convention’s website for further details.

Check your ammo and saddle up your horse and head for Cross Plains, Texas for Robert E. Howard Days 2010. The focus of this year’s programming will be the illustrators of Robert E. Howard. Jim and Ruth Keegan will be the guests of honor. This year’s Howard Days will take place June 11-12.

Just a few days before summer begins, Classicon 37 will take place at the University Quality Inn in Lansing, Michigan, just off US 127 at exit 78. There will be 35 tables and thousands of collectible vintage pulp magazines, digests, and paperbacks available for sale or trade as well as pinups, original artwork, and other pop culture material. Please visit the Curious Book Shop for further information.

Of course, all these events will all be leading up to PulpFest, summertime’s great pulp con. Why not register today?

Many thanks to the folks who run the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention for not only putting on a great show, but for allowing PulpFest’’s Ed Hulse to talk about our convention during a break in the action at the Westin Lombard. The Windy’s support over the last two years has been tremendous.

If you’re north of the border on Saturday, May 8th, why not stop by the Lillian H. Smith branch of the Toronto Public Library for the 14th edition of Canada’s premier pulp event, the Fantastic Pulps Show & Sale? This small, but pulp specific event always features lots of great stuff for the collector and the curious alike. For further information, please write to Girasol Collectables at info@girasolcollectables.com.

Also held at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Conference Center, the home for PulpFest 2010, Cinevent 42 will take place during Memorial Day weekend, May 28-31. In addition to 170 tables of movie-related collectibles such as posters, lobby cards, stills, pressbooks, DVDs, and 16 mm films, Cinevent features an extensive schedule of sound and silent films and a two-day auction of Hollywood movie posters. Please visit the convention’s website for further details.

Check your ammo and saddle up your horse and head for Cross Plains, Texas for Robert E. Howard Days 2010. The focus of this year’s programming will be the illustrators of Robert E. Howard. Jim and Ruth Keegan will be the guests of honor. This year’s Howard Days will take place June 11-12.

Just a few days before summer begins, Classicon 37 will take place at the University Quality Inn in Lansing, Michigan, just off US 127 at exit 78. There will be 35 tables and thousands of collectible vintage pulp magazines, digests, and paperbacks available for sale or trade as well as pinups, original artwork, and other pop culture material. Please visit the Curious Book Shop for further information.

Of course, all these events will all be leading up to PulpFest, summertime’s great pulp con. Why not register today?

Many thanks to the folks who run the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention for not only putting on a great show, but for allowing PulpFest’’s Ed Hulse to talk about our convention during a break in the action at the Westin Lombard. The Windy’s support over the last two years has been tremendous.

If you’re north of the border on Saturday, May 8th, why not stop by the Lillian H. Smith branch of the Toronto Public Library for the 14th edition of Canada’s premier pulp event, the Fantastic Pulps Show & Sale? This small, but pulp specific event always features lots of great stuff for the collector and the curious alike. For further information, please write to Girasol Collectables at info@girasolcollectables.com.

Also held at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Conference Center, the home for PulpFest 2010, Cinevent 42 will take place during Memorial Day weekend, May 28-31. In addition to 170 tables of movie-related collectibles such as posters, lobby cards, stills, pressbooks, DVDs, and 16 mm films, Cinevent features an extensive schedule of sound and silent films and a two-day auction of Hollywood movie posters. Please visit the convention’s website for further details.

Check your ammo and saddle up your horse and head for Cross Plains, Texas for Robert E. Howard Days 2010. The focus of this year’s programming will be the illustrators of Robert E. Howard. Jim and Ruth Keegan will be the guests of honor. This year’s Howard Days will take place June 11-12.

Just a few days before summer begins, Classicon 37 will take place at the University Quality Inn in Lansing, Michigan, just off US 127 at exit 78. There will be 35 tables and thousands of collectible vintage pulp magazines, digests, and paperbacks available for sale or trade as well as pinups, original artwork, and other pop culture material. Please visit the Curious Book Shop for further information.

Of course, all these events will all be leading up to PulpFest, summertime’s great pulp con. Why not register today?


Website Revisions

In November of 2009, the PulpFest website went through many changes, preparing it for the convention in the year to come. These changes were announced on Thanksgiving Day.

Website Updated

Happy Thanksgiving to all! With the holiday shopping season getting underway tomorrow, why not treat yourself to “Christmas in July” by sending in your registration for PulpFest 2010? Or perhaps you can convince your significant other to skip the sweater that he or she was planning to buy for you on Black Friday and instead purchase a “3-day membership with early bird access” for their favorite pulp fan. And while they’re at it, you might want to tell them about the Titanic exhibit that will be at Columbus’ Center of Science and Industry through September 6. Why not make PulpFest 2010 a trip for the whole family? Columbus has plenty to offer!    

You’ll find many changes to the PulpFest website, starting right on the home page. Our posts have been organized to better reflect our new focus–PulpFest 2010! Practically all of our pages have seen changes, from minor cosmetic revisions to hefty redesigns. The convention hours for 2010 can be found under “The Details.” Our new Thursday night film showing and “Welcome Back Bash” are listed on the “Programming” page. Details to follow. You’ll also find the nominating guidelines for the Munsey Award to be slightly revised: you can now vote for some of the fools running this convention!

Tony Davis is always on the hunt for good articles to run in The Pulpster. Find out how to submit your scribblings to the ever vigilant Mr. Davis by visiting the fanzine’s page on our website. And PulpFest’s talented designer, Chris Kalb, has produced another dynamite flyer for distribution at conventions, book shows, college campuses or wherever else pulp fans may be lurking. You can download a copy from our “Promotion” page.

The biggest change to our site is the brand new “PulpFest 2009” page. Following a brief introduction, you’ll find a convention report from Randy Cox, editor and publisher of Dime Novel Round-Up. You’ll also find downloads of the flyers that helped to sell our 2009 convention. Finally, you’ll be able to read a running narration of the days and weeks that led up to last year’s dynamite summer pulp con, PulpFest 2009, based on the many posts that appeared on our website and elsewhere across the Internet.

Remember to stop back here often for the latest news on “The Summer’s Great Pulp Convention,” PulpFest 2010. Or sign up for our regular email updates. Look for the gray box along the right side of our home page to subscribe.


2010 Guest of Honor

At the end of January 2010, PulpFest was pleased to announce that award-winning author William F. Nolan had accepted the convention’s offer to be its guest of honor.

Our Guest of Honor

PulpFest is proud to announce that award-winning author, editor, screenwriter, and biographer William F. Nolan will be the Guest of Honor at this year’s convention.

Among his other accomplishments, Mr. Nolan is a leading authority on pulp fictioneers Max Brand and Dashiell Hammett as well as the other Black Mask contributors who flourished under the regime of editor Joseph T. Shaw. His many books on these writers include Hammett: A Life at the Edge (1983), The Black Mask Boys (1985), and Max Brand: Western Giant (1986). This year marks the 90th anniversary of both Black Mask’s first issue and Max Brand’s first appearance in Western Story Magazine, and the PulpFest committee felt that Mr. Nolan was the ideal person to help recognize these milestones in pulp history. He will headline PulpFest panels on Western and hard-boiled detective fiction.    

Nolan is an accomplished fictioneer in his own right, having written numerous works in the fantasy, horror, and science-fiction genres. He is perhaps best known as the co-author of Logan’s Run and author of its sequels. He is a two-time winner of the Mystery Writers of America’s prestigious Edgar Award, was named Author Emeritus by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, acclaimed a Living Legend by the International Horror Guild, and recently received the Lifetime Achievement Stoker Award from the Horror Writers Association.

PulpFest 2010 will be held at last year’s venue, the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio. The convention will begin on Friday, July 30th, and run through Sunday, August 1st. For more about William F. Nolan, please visit the Guest of Honor page under Programming.

Our Guest, Bill Nolan

With PulpFest less than two months away, the committee is now finalizing the schedule of events and composition of panels. This year’s convention will boast even more programs than last year’s, with many of the pulp community’s most knowledgeable members participating in discussions that will be as informative as they are entertaining.

Guest of Honor William F. Nolan will appear at three separate events. On Friday evening, following the official welcome to PulpFest attendees, Nolan will be interviewed by his friend and agent, Jason Brock. In addition to touching on Max Brand and the Black Mask writers being celebrated at this year’s convention, the author will discuss his relationships with Ray Bradbury, Richard Matheson, Charles Beaumont, and other well-known writers of genre fiction in the pulp tradition. And, of course, he’ll talk about his own work, including his contributions to the horror field (such as his work for the revived Weird Tales) and the novels for which he is perhaps best known, Logan’s Run and its sequels.   

Immediately following the one-on-one session, Mr. Nolan will join moderator Don Hutchison and panelists Robert Randisi, Laurie Powers, and Ed Hulse for what we expect will be a lively discussion on Western pulp fiction, with an emphasis on the amazing Max Brand. Don is familiar to pulp aficionados as the author of The Great Pulp Heroes and editor of several outstanding pulp-fiction anthologies. Affectionately known as “the last of the pulp writers,” Bob Randisi has written hundreds of novels in the genre and will bring to the panel a more contemporary viewpoint. Laurie Powers, in addition to being a talented author and dedicated scholar, is the granddaughter of prolific Wild West Weekly scribe Paul S. Powers, who created some of that magazine’s most popular, long-running series characters. Ed Hulse is editor and publisher of Blood ‘n’ Thunder and author of The Blood ‘n’ Thunder Guide to Collecting Pulps, as well as a lifelong fan of Western fiction.

Finally, Nolan will headline Saturday night’s panel on Black Mask, the legendary crime-fiction pulp whose first issue appeared 90 years ago. He’ll be joined by Walker Martin, one of only two private collectors known to have compiled a complete set of this influential and highly desirable magazine; author, editor, and screenwriter John Wooley, the detective-fiction aficionado largely responsible for the resurgence of interest in pulp private eye Dan Turner; and another as yet unconfirmed scholar. Ed Hulse will moderate.

These all-star panels are only some of the events we have planned for PulpFest.  They’ll cover Westerns and crime pulps, but we’re not neglecting other genres. Fans, scholars and collectors interested in other categories, such as hero pulps and science fiction, can expect presentations targeted to their interests as well. We’ll be announcing those other events over the next few weeks.

Anyone with even a cursory interest in pulp fiction will find plenty to do, see, and buy at PulpFest, where a wide variety of material for sale will be displayed in a spacious hucksters room housing nearly 100 tables.  This year we’ve also arranged for a lunch wagon and tables where hungry attendees can wolf down sandwiches and take the load off their feet without leaving the hotel or missing any of the action.

There’s still time to make your room reservations and qualify for the special PulpFest room rate. Just click on the link for our host hotel, the Ramada Plaza, and use the toll-free number to book your room.

Things are coming together fast now, so be sure and check this page regularly over the next few weeks for additional programming announcements.


Robert J. Randisi

In March 2010, PulpFest learned that author Robert J. Randisi was also planning to attend our convention. The news was greeted with a great deal of excitement. Unfortunately, come convention time, Mr. Randisi was unable to attend.

Robert J. Randisi to Attend

Joining us at the 2010 PulpFest to help celebrate the 90th anniversaries of Black Mask’s debut and Max Brand’s first appearance in Western Story Magazine will be prolific author Robert J. Randisi, whom the publishing-industry trade journal Booklist has called “one of the last true pulp writers.”

Randisi, who has for many years been active in both fan and pro circles, is the author of over 540 books, more than 50 short stories, and one screenplay. He has also edited 30 anthologies. A professional since 1982, when he began writing full time, Randisi has penned Westerns, mysteries, and stories in the horror, science fiction, and men’s-adventure genres. He has written yarns published under 15 different pseudonyms; as “J. R. Roberts” he created—and still writes—the long-running Gunsmith series, which currently numbers some 340 novels.    

Randisi’s activities in the crime-fiction field have been many and varied. He edited a Writer’s Digest how-to book, Writing the Private Eye Novel, and for seven years was the mystery reviewer for the Orlando Sentinel. In 1982 he founded the Private Eye Writers of America and created the Shamus Award. In 1985 he co-founded Mystery Scene Magazine and the short-lived American Mystery Award; a couple years later he co-founded the American Crime Writer’s League. In 1993 he was awarded a Life Achievement Award at the Southwest Mystery Convention. Just last year he received the Life Achievement Award from the Private Eye Writers of America.

We look forward to having Bob Randisi join us in Columbus this July, and we trust that PulpFest attendees will be delighted to have him participate in our celebration of vintage pulp fiction.

PulpFest plans are coming together rapidly and dealers tables are going fast. Print advertising for the convention will be rolling out shortly, and we’re already distributing flyers and promotional postcards by the thousands at targeted conventions and book fairs in the Northeast and Midwest.

We’ll be making additional updates to this site in the weeks and months to come, so check back regularly for news about programming, auctions, and special events.


2010 Munsey Nominees

Each year, PulpFest hands out a service award to a deserving person. Called the Munsey Award, after the man who invented the pulp magazine, it was created in 2009 by talented artist David Saunders.

Call for Nominations

With spring fast approaching, it’s time to get your Munsey Award nominations to PulpFest. All members of the pulp community, whether they plan to attend PulpFest 2010 or not, are welcome to nominate a deserving person for this year’s service award.

Named after Frank A. Munsey, the man who published the first all-fiction pulp magazine, the Munsey is presented annually to a deserving person who has given of himself or herself for the betterment of the pulp community, be it through disseminating knowledge about the pulps, publishing, or through other efforts to preserve and to foster interest in the pulp magazines we all love and enjoy. All members of the pulp community, excepting past winners of the Munsey or Lamont awards, are eligible for this prestigious prize.   

David Saunders, the son of the legendary pulp artist Norman Saunders, has created a sensational, limited-edition print to serve as the Munsey. David’s work, pictured above, is a refreshing homage to classic pulp art that honors the entire pulp community and their common love of the purple prose of the bloody pulps.

If you have someone in mind that you feel worthy to receive this year’s Munsey Award, please let us know. Send the person’s name and a brief paragraph describing why you feel that person should be honored to Mike Chomko, 2217 W. Fairview Street, Allentown, PA 18104-6542 or to mike@pulpfest.com. The deadline for nominations is April 30, 2010. The recipient of the Munsey Award will be selected by a panel of judges consisting of recognized experts in the field of pulp literature. The award will be presented on Saturday evening, July 31 during the convention’s evening programming.

An informal breakfast to honor the winner of the 2010 Munsey will be held in the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Conference Center’s spacious restaurant on Sunday, August 1 from 9 AM to 10 AM.

Munsey Nominees

The PulpFest Organizing Committee is proud to announce that sixteen members of the general pulp community have been nominated for the 2010 Munsey Award. The nominees were selected by pulp fans over the last several months. Their names will now be forwarded to a committee made up of all the living Lamont Award winners and last year’s Munsey winner, Bill Thom, who will select the person to receive the 2010 Munsey.

The sixteen nominees include Anthony Tollin, Chris Kalb, Dan Zimmer, Don Herron, Garyn Roberts, Gene Christie, George Vanderburgh, Howard Wright,  John DeWalt, Laurie Powers, Mike Chomko, Mike Taylor, Ron Fortier, Ron Hanna, Steve Miller, and Bill Contento. You’ll find further details about each nominee on the 2010 Nominees page of our website.

The recipient of the 2010 Munsey Award, a limited edition print designed by artist and pulp enthusiast David Saunders, will be announced on July 31 as part of the Saturday evening programming schedule, open to all PulpFest 2010 registrants.

There were sixteen nominating petitions for the 2010 Munsey Award that met the criteria put forth in our “Call for Munsey Nominations.” Many thanks from the PulpFest organizing committee to all who participated in the nominating process.

The nominee ballot was next forwarded to the past winners of the Munsey and Lamont Awards who selected this year’s winner. The 2010 Munsey Award was presented during Saturday evening’s programming, July 31.

Congratulations to all the nominees for this year’s Munsey.

And the Munsey Winner Is…

With sixteen nominations for the 2010 Munsey Award, the PulpFest organizing committee was very pleased with the response to its call for nominations. In early June, ballots describing each of the nominees and their contributions to the pulp world were sent to all the living Lamont and Munsey Award winners.

The votes have all been counted and the recipient of the 2010 Munsey Award is…..   Oops, we almost let it slip out! You’ll have to be in attendance at this year’s PulpFest on Saturday evening, July 31st, to meet our winner. The Munsey will be presented to one of our sixteen nominees following the annual PulpFest business meeting. So be sure to mark your calendars for PulpFest 2010, beginning Thursday, July 29th (early registration) and running through Sunday, August 1st.


Dealer Room Sell-Out

By mid-June the expanded dealers’ room for PulpFest 2010 was a complete sell-out. In just two short years, PulpFest had become one of two major events in the world of pulp collecting. You can read about our 2010 dealers by visiting the PulpFest 2010 dealers’ page.

No Room at the Inn

As of June 16, the PulpFest dealers’ room is totally sold out. Any dealer registrations received after Tuesday, June 22, 2010 will be placed on a waiting list in case of last minute cancellations.

Visitors to this year’s show can look forward to seeing material for sale on 100 tables spread across our expanded exhibit space at the Ramada Plaza. PulpFest’s exhibitors offer a wide variety of product. In addition to original pulp magazines, attendees can purchase hardcovers and paperbacks, new fiction written in the pulp tradition, and other collectibles related to American popular culture of the pulp era. Rare and particularly desirable books can cost many hundreds, even thousands of dollars, but our dealers offer many inexpensive items as well. Collectors on a tight budget can still find lots of appealing stuff at PulpFest, and newcomers to the hobby will be surprised to see how many vintage magazines they can purchase at affordable prices. Those looking to sample pulp fiction without investing a lot of money in collectible items can choose from among dozens of newly published reprint volumes in trade-paperback format. In short, PulpFest’s dealers’ room offers something for everybody!


Leigh Brackett

As he did at the first PulpFest in 2009, publisher Stephen Haffner entertained an audience of pulp fans with stories about Mrs. Edmond Hamilton, far better known as Leigh Brackett…

The Queen of Space Opera

Known mostly to modern genre fans as the author of the first-draft of The Empire Strikes Back, pulp fans know Leigh Brackett as “The Queen of Space Opera.” From the beginning, Brackett merged the planetary romances of Edgar Rice Burroughs with the hard-boiled, economic storytelling of Raymond Chandler and James M. Cain. The results were spectacular! In addition to her pulp output, Brackett also drew the attention of Hollywood auteur Howard Hawks and contributed to such projects as The Big Sleep, Rio Bravo, Hatari!, and other film classics. Since 2002, Haffner Press has been steadily reprinting the stories of Leigh Brackett, and at PulpFest 2010 editor and publisher Stephen Haffner will present a 45-minute multimedia program on the background and career of this favorite writer. Drawing from sources common and obscure, you do not want to show up late for this event. Join Stephen Haffner on Friday, July 30 at 9:30 PM for “Leigh Brackett: American Icon.” You have been warned.


The Shadow Knows…

Sanctum Books publisher Anthony Tollin has long been known for his knowledge concerning Walter B. Gibson’s creation, The Shadow. As part of its programming, PulpFest 2010 saluted the 80th anniversary of The Shadow’s debut on radio, as the narrator of The Detective Story Magazine Hour.

Who Knows What Evil?

Almost a full year before his first appearance in the pulps, The Shadow debuted as the narrator of The Detective Story Hour, a CBS radio program sponsored by Street & Smith. A mysterious storyteller with a sinister voice, the character soon had listeners visiting their neighborhood newsstand to ask for “that Shadow detective magazine.” Bowing to demand, Street & Smith created The Shadow Magazine and the hero pulp genre was born.

On July 31, join Sanctum Books publisher and pulp historian Anthony Tollin as he commemorates the 80th anniversary of The Shadow’s radio debut with a multi-media presentation featuring interview material with Walter Gibson and other important figures from the history of the Knight of Darkness.


Writers at PulpFest

PulpFest was very pleased to have pulp historian and author Will Murray and popular culture expert Martin Grams speak during our afternoon programming hours.

Meet Kenneth Robeson

Lester Dent, Laurence Donovan, Paul Ernst, Ryerson Johnson…were pulp writers with one thing in common: they were all Kenneth Robeson.

When Street & Smith launched Doc Savage Magazine in 1933, they decided to use a house name to mask the identity of the author behind the new adventure series. Six years later, they did it again when the first issue of The Avenger hit the stands. Warner Books followed suit when Ron Goulart continued the series in the 1970s.

On Saturday afternoon, July 31 at PulpFest 2010, you’ll have a chance to meet the latest Kenneth Robeson when Will Murray discusses his seven-year effort to get new Doc Savage novels back in the book stores. He’ll also talk about his latest novel featuring the Man of BronzeThe Desert Demons, a story based upon an outline by Lester Dent–and related subjects.

But wait! If you prefer green over the color bronze, Martin Grams will be on hand with a history of The Green Hornet. Although the character never crossed over to the pulps, The Hornet had the same feel and essence as many of the rough paper masked vigilantes. Get the lowdown on this character and his companion Kato, their earliest adventures, why most of the recordings for the radio series don’t exist, and more through this fascinating slide show presentation. Additionally, Martin may have some tidbits about The Shadow that will surprise even the most dedicated enthusiast of the dark avenger.

For further details on all of the programming at PulpFest 2010, please visit our programming page.


The Pulpster

The Pulpster is the official program book for PulpFest. Edited by Lamont Award winner Tony Davis and designed by Bill Lampkin of The Pulp.Net, The Pulpster is always one of the highlights of any pulp con.

Hot Off the Presses

As he has for the last nineteen years, Tony Davis has come up with another dynamite issue of The Pulpster. The official magazine and program guide for PulpFest 2010, the new issue is 44 pages long and, for the first time in its long history, features a color cover.

Like this year’s PulpFest, one of the focal points of The Pulpster#19 is the 90th anniversary of Black Mask. With that in mind, Bruce Stirling has contributed a detailed analysis about the origins of hard-boiled crime fiction in “Whatever Happened to Three Gun Terry?”, illustrated by Kenney Mencher.

The former editor of Singing Guns magazine, Dave Fox, sets his sight on Frederick Faust with “Max Brand and Western Story Magazine: Year One,” another ninety year anniversary in 2010, while PulpFest guest of honor, Bill Nolan, covers both anniversaries with “Spade, Destry and Dr. Kildare.”

But there’s plenty more as Don Hutchison takes a look at author David Goodis and John Locke presents an overview of the career of Avenger writer Paul Ernst. Wayne Leighton is on board with a piece on L. Ron Hubbard and Theodore Sturgeon while Pulpster designer Bill Lampkin (of ThePulp.Net) discusses “The Lost Doc Savage Movie,” illustrated by Francescho Francavilla, and longtime pulp historian Nick Carr answers “10 Pulp Questions I’ve Been Asked.” Filling out the issue is a reprint of a Frederick C. Painton article from the April 1936 Writer’s Digest plus editorial content.

Except for “Sunday Only” attendees, all members (including supporting members) of PulpFest 2010 will receive a complimentary copy of The Pulpster #19.

Advertise in The Pulpster

The Pulpster is a 19-year tradition cherished by attendees of summer pulp cons. Once again, editor Tony Davis will be issuing this amazing program book at PulpFest. All members will receive a complimentary copy of The Pulpster.

Beginning in 2009, The Pulpster began to accept advertising. If you’d like to place an advertisement in this year’s issue, there’s still time to do it. However, the April 30 deadline for reserving advertising space is fast approaching. Rates, specifications, and other information can be found on The Pulpster page of our website.

Another way to advertise at PulpFest is to donate material for our giveaway table. Last year, Fantasy and Science Fiction, Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, Random House Publishing, Small Beer Press, Galaxy Press, Engle Publishing, and Book Source Magazine all donated a variety of publications that were given away free to PulpFest attendees. Your donation will be acknowledged on our website and at the convention. If you’d like to offer something for our giveaway table, please contact Barry Traylor at barry@pulpfest.com.


PulpFest Readings

Beginning in its inaugural year, PulpFest decided to seek out and support new writers of fiction modeled after the pulp style of the early twentieth century. Thus was born…

The New Fictioneers

They were called scribes, word slingers, hacks and penny-a-worders. But perhaps the most favored term, especially among the men and women who labored for the bloody pulps, was fictioneer—a fiction writer, especially a prolific creator of commercial or pulp fiction.

Join PulpFest as we celebrate today’s fictioneers—the authors writing the new pulp fiction. Indiana’s David Walker, a longtime friend to pulp historian Nick Carr, will be on hand to read from The Dawn of Midnight, a story originally penned for Airship 27’s Lance Star, Sky Ranger, Volume Two, published by Cornerstone Books and featuring the popular adventure hero, Captain Midnight. He’ll also be available for questions, critiques and good, old-fashioned schmoozing.

David’s New Fictioneers reading will take place on Friday, 7/30 at 3 PM. Please visit our programming page for further details on this and PulpFest’s other exciting programming events.


Mike Nevins 

At PulpFest 2010, essayist and author Francis M. Nevins graciously consented to discuss his new collection of mysterious non-fiction…

Cornucopia of Crime

Six years after serving as the guest of honor at Pulpcon 33, Francis M. Nevins returns to the spotlight with an appearance at PulpFest 2010. Mike will be talking about Cornucopia of Crime, his forthcoming book from Ramble House, a hefty volume of 449 closely printed pages featuring chapters on pulp titans such as Cornell Woolricjh, Erle Stanley Gardner, John Lawrence, Cleve F. Adams and John D. MacDonald. Also included are interviews with James Atlee Phillips, better known as espionage novelist Phlip Atlee of the Joe Gall series, and with his brother David Atlee Phillips, a career CIA officer who shadowed Graham Greene in Castro’s Cuba and is suspected in some quarters of having had a hand in the JFK assassination.

Best known as the author of the ultimate Woolrich biography, First You Dream, Then You Die (which won an Edgar Award from the Mystery Writers of America, Nevins is a professor at the St. Louis University School of Law where he has taught since 1971. Some of his other books include Hopalong Cassidy: On the Page, On the Screen and The Cisco Kid: American Hero, Hispanic Roots. He has also edited many mystery anthologies and collections including Night and Fear and Leopold’s Way. Additionally, he has authored six mystery novels and two short story collections.

Join Mike Nevins at PulpFest at 2 PM on Friday, July 30 for Cornucopia of Crime.


Contributions 

In addition to