Join us in 2014 in Columbus, Ohio for Summer's Great Pulp Convention!
Thousands of Pulp Magazines in One Hall!
Join us Thursday, August 7th – Sunday, August 10th
at the Hyatt Regency
Columbus, Ohio for PulpFest 2014.
November 24, 2013
Every year, PulpFest recognizes the efforts of those who work to keep the pulps alive for this and future generations through its Munsey Award (pictured at left). Named after Frank A. Munsey, the man who published the first pulp magazine, this annual award recognizes an individual who has given of himself or herself for the betterment of the pulp community, be it through disseminating knowledge about the pulps or through publishing or other efforts to preserve and to foster interest in the pulp magazines we all love and enjoy. Nominations for the 2014 Munsey are now being accepted. All members of the pulp community, whether they plan to attend PulpFest 2014 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 email@example.com. The deadline for nominations is April 30, 2014. 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 August 9th, during the convention’s evening programming.
The Munsey Award was created by artist David Saunders, the son of legendary illustrator Norman Saunders. Dan Zimmer of the Illustrated Press and publisher of Illustration Magazine has produced a 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.
November 18, 2013
PulpFest 2014 may still be over eight months away, but it’s not too early to start working on an article for the next number of The Pulpster. As you know, PulpFest will be celebrating the 75th anniversary of science fiction’s Golden Age, when fantastic fiction “grew up.” Startling Stories, Unknown, Famous Fantastic Mysteries, Planet Stories, and similar magazines debuted in 1939. The year also witnessed the first World Science Fiction Convention.
PulpFest 2014 will also be saluting the shudder pulps of 1934. Although the weird-menace tale came into being in the latter months of 1933, it wasn’t until the following year that the genre blossomed with the advent of Popular Publications’ Terror Tales and Horror Stories, as well as Spicy Mystery Stories.
The Pulpster is the award-winning program book of “Summer’s Great Pulp Con.” A longstanding tradition cherished by attendees of PulpFest, this highly collectible and informative magazine has been around for over twenty years. First edited by Lamont Award winner Tony Davis, The Pulpster now has Bill Lampkin at the helm. Bill also runs The Pulp.Net, which he created in 1996, and writes the Yellowed Perils blog.
Although The Pulpster is actively seeking articles about science fiction and fantasy and the great magazines of 1939, as well as explorations of the weird-menace story and the shudder pulps, it’s not limited to those themes alone. If you have an interesting, pulp-related article or idea (preferably never-before-published in print or online), Bill would love to hear from you. Unfortunately, he can’t pay you, but you will receive a free copy of the issue in which your contribution appears. The submission deadline is April 30, 2014.
Articles should be submitted in a plain text or Word document (no PDFs please). Artwork and illustrations should be PNG, JPG, TIF, EPS or PSD formats. Articles and artwork can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to The Pulpster, c/o Bill Lampkin, P. O. Box 12741, Tallahassee, FL 32317. If you have any questions about the magazine’s editorial content, please feel free to contact Bill.
If you would like to advertise in The Pulpster, please write to Mike Chomko at email@example.com. More information on advertising can be found on the Program Book page of our website, where you’ll also find information about back issues.
H. W. Scott’s cover to the March 1939 issue of Unknown illustrates the first issue’s lead story, “Sinister Barrier,” written by Eric Frank Russell.
October 6, 2013
With the autumn pulp con season in full swing, it’s the perfect time to announce that PulpFest 2014 will be returning to the Hyatt Regency hotel in downtown Columbus, Ohio. Summer’s must-attend event for fans, scholars, and collectors of pulp fiction will take place from Thursday, August 7th, through Sunday, August 10th with its acclaimed dealers’ room and packed programming schedule.
2014 marks the seventy-fifth anniversary of what many scholars have labeled the dawn of science fiction’s Golden Age. As Alva Rogers wrote in his classic 1964 study of Astounding Stories, the leading science-fiction pulp of that long-gone era:
We now come to the beginning of what is generally known as the Golden Age of science fiction as a genre . . . These next few years are the high-water mark of Astounding and of magazine science fiction. It is true that today we have men and women of considerable talent writing for the field . . . However, the magic, that hard to define Sense of Wonder, the excitement that surrounded Astounding in the years of the Golden Age (and, in fact, the entire field) seems to be sadly lacking these days . . . No longer is there that unbearable and interminable wait between issues; the thrill of a beautiful Rogers cover standing out like a diamond surrounded by paste as you approach the newsstand; the rush home and the hungry devouring of the entire contents at one sitting; the promise to yourself not to start the latest Heinlein or van Vogt or Smith serial until all the parts are at hand . . . the immediate breaking of that promise, and once again the interminable wait.
As Rogers states, 1939 was not only a golden year for Astounding–publishing the first science-fiction stories of Robert E. Heinlein, Theodore Sturgeon, and A. E. Van Vogt, as well as Isaac Asimov’s first story for the magazine and Hubert Rogers’ first cover–it also witnessed a blossoming of magazine science fiction and fantasy. Following the introduction of Startling Stories at the end of 1938, no less than eight pulps featuring fantastic fiction debuted in 1939–Dynamic Science Stories, Strange Stories, Science Fiction, Unknown, Fantastic Adventures, Future Fiction, Famous Fantastic Mysteries, and Planet Stories. Three other science-fiction pulps were also in preparation during the year–Astonishing Stories, Captain Future, and Super Science Stories. The first World Science Fiction Convention was also held in New York City that year, home to the World’s Fair and its “World of Tomorrow” theme.
PulpFest 2014 will also be celebrating the eightieth anniversary of Popular Publications’ shudder pulp trio of Dime Mystery Magazine, Terror Tales, and Horror Stories. The ashcan edition of Spicy Mystery Stories was also released during the summer of 1934. Although the first weird-menace tales appeared in Dime Mystery in the fall of 1933, it was not until the debut of Terror Tales and later, Horror Stories and Spicy Mystery, that the genre began to flourish. In just a few years, additional magazines–Star Detective, Thrilling Mystery, Eerie Mysteries, and others–would find space on America’s newsstands, hoping to scare the dickens out of their readers.
So start planning now to join PulpFest‘s celebration of science fiction’s Golden Age and the weird-menace pulps of 1934! And to keep up with all the latest news, please subscribe to our email updates via the gray box labeled “E-mail List” at the top of our home page. While you’re at it, “like” us on Facebook and “follow” us on Twitter.
Graves Gladney, best remembered today for his covers for The Shadow Magazine, contributed the cover art to the July 1939 Astounding Science Fiction, considered by many longtime science-fiction fans to be the true beginning of the genre’s Golden Age. Isaac Asimov’s first story for the magazine, “Trends,” and A. E. Van Vogt’s first story, “Black Destroyer” (thought by some to be an inspiration for the Ridley Scott film Alien), appeared in the issue. One month later, Robert Heinlein’s first story, “Life-Line,” ran in the magazine.
The photograph depicting the New York World’s Fair of 1939 is from Jon Snyder’s article “1939′s ‘World of Tomorrow’ Shaped Our Today,” appearing in the April 29, 2010 online edition of Wired.
Alva Rogers’ A Requiem for Astounding was published in 1964 by Advent Publishers of Chicago, Illinois.
September 8, 2013
With fall just two weeks away, here in the Northeast our thoughts are turning to autumn’s vibrant colors and a bevy of conventions in the coming weeks including the pop culture extravaganza, Mid-Atlantic Nostalgia Convention, the 25th New York City Collectible Paperback & Pulp Fiction Expo, the Southwest’s Doc Con, and the Northeast’s Pulp AdventureCon and Classicon.
Beginning September 19th and running through September 21st, the annual Mid-Atlantic Nostalgia Convention will take place at the Wyndham hotel in Hunt Valley, Maryland. The brainchild of PulpFest dealer Martin Grams and his wife, Michelle, the convention is a three-day festival designed to stimulate interest in nostalgia. During the event, you can watch screenings of vintage movies and television shows, world premiere documentaries, Hollywood celebrities posing for photos and signing autographs for fans, slide show seminars from authors and historians, and visit over 200 vendor tables featuring retro-merchandise, antiques, and collectibles. It’s a lot of fun.
For the last 25 years, Gary Lovisi, the publisher of Paperback Parade, has hosted the New York City Collectible Paperback & Pulp Fiction Expo. This one-day show is centered around a dealers’ room featuring tens of thousands of vintage and collectible paperbacks, pulps, digest, and mens’ adventure magazines, videos and DVDs, original art, hardcovers, and much more. There’s always a substantial guest list and this year’s convention is no exception. Announced appearances include Hard Case Crime publisher and author Charles Ardai; mystery and crime writer Lawrence Block; artist Marcus Boas; pop culture authority Ron Goulart; artist Bob Larkin; F. Paul Wilson, creator of the Repairman Jack series; and many others. Gary’s expo will occur on Sunday, October 13th, at the Holiday Inn at 440 West 57th Street in the Big Apple.
Beginning five days later on October 18th, Doc Con 16 will take place at the Comfort Suites in Glendale, Arizona. Dedicated to the fans of bronze and the eightieth anniversary of America’s first superhero, Doc Savage, the convention will run through Sunday, October 20th. According to Doc Con organizer Jay Ryan, “a surprise is scheduled for Friday night’s Doc Savage Suite, while Saturday promises to be fast paced and entertaining.” Will Doc’s cousin, Pat, pop out of a cake? You’ll only find out only by joining Doc Con 16.
Bordentown’s Ramada Inn, just off exit 7 of the New Jersey Turnpike, will become a pulp collecting Mecca on Saturday, November 2nd when Rich Harvey’s Pulp AdventureCon 2013 moves into its banquet area. “There’s something for everyone, whether you collect H. P. Lovecraft or Dashiell Hammett, The Shadow or Doc Savage, Argosy or Black Mask . . . the list could, quite possibly, be endless.” This one-day event is always a lot of fun so why not sign up?
On the same day many miles to the north, Classicon 44 comes to the University Quality Inn, located in Lansing, Michigan. One of the first-established pulp and paperback shows, Classicon offers thousands of collectible pulp magazines, digests, and paperbacks for sale or trade. Also available are vintage comic books, pin-ups and calendars, original paperback art from the fifties and sixties, and much more. It is hosted by PulpFest dealer Ray Walsh and his Curious Book Shop.
So while you await PulpFest 2014, why not tryone of these fine shows. If you do, please tell them that PulpFest sent you.
Erle Bergey painted the cover for the March 1950 issue of Startling Stories, published by Ned Pines’ Standard Magazines. The Doc Con 2013 poster is the work of Julián Puga, Cristian Diaz, and Alvaro Fernandois.
September 2, 2013
On this day when we salute the American worker, PulpFest is pleased to welcome its newest “laborer,” Chuck Welch, to its organizing committee. A resident of Wisconsin, Chuck began attending pulp cons in the late nineties. After starting a family, he rejoined PulpFest several years back and has been a devoted attendee ever since. Here’s what Chuck has to say about himself:
Although some may believe he is old enough to have purchased pulps off the newsstand, Chuck Welch is a mere whippersnapper. As one of the original Internet Fans of Bronze, Chuck started attending the summer pulp convention in the late 1990s. After meeting his future wife at one of those conventions, Chuck took some time off to start a family. At the behest of Bill Mann, he returned to attend PulpFest. As is his wont, Chuck immediately started volunteering and making suggestions to Jack, Barry, Ed, and Mike. Having enough of his puppy-dog eyes, the fearsome foursome asked Chuck if he’d like to join the team. Recently moved and having foisted off his old businesses, Chuck accepted. His goal for PulpFest 2014 is to not have any other members call for his head.
Chuck resides in La Crosse, Wisconsin with his wife and daughter. Though the youngest Welch has access to three complete collections of Doc Savage novels, she hasn’t yet found her parent’s love for the character. A generalist by heart, Chuck won’t claim an expert’s knowledge in any area of pulps or pulp collecting. However, he brings technical expertise in the fields of social media, new and dinosaur journalism, and organization.
Please welcome Chuck as one of the planners of PulpFest, “The Summer’s Great Pulp Con!” You can reach Chuck with your comments and suggestions via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The image above is the front cover to the April 1937 issue of Railroad Stories, one of the Munsey line of pulp magazines. The artist is not known.
August 25, 2013
Copies of the latest issue of The Pulpster, are now available from Mike Chomko, Books. The 22nd issue of the award-winning program book, its biggest number yet, is the work of William Lampkin, administrator of the popular ThePulp.Net. Although Bill has designed The Pulpster since 2008, this is his first year as editor of the fanzine.
Like PulpFest 2013, The Pulpster #22 celebrates the 80th anniversary of the pulp hero boom of 1933, the 90th anniversary of Weird Tales, and the 100th anniversary of Fu Manchu. Leading off the magazine is a short article explaining how the August 1931 issue of “The Unique Magazine” sent a killer to the electric chair; next, PulpFest organizer Mike Chomko and Doc Savage author Will Murray look at the pulp heroes of 1933; William Preston, discusses his “Old Man” stories, inspired by Lester Dent’s Man of Bronze, while Murray returns with “On Writing Skull Island;” Echoes publisher and “New Pulp” author Tom Johnson explores Johnston McCulley’s “Rollicking Rogue” series, a precursor to the great pulp heroes; the writer authorized to continue the Fu Manchu series, William Patrick Maynard, details his longterm relationship with Rohmer’s devil doctor and Nathan Vernon Madison examines early yellow peril fiction found in dime novels and story papers; the longtime Street & Smith editor, Daisy Bacon, is profiled by Laurie Powers and the early science-fiction pioneer, Homer Eon Flint, is discussed by his granddaughter, Vella Munn; Monte Herridge explores Richard Sales’ Daffy Dill stories, a long-running series that appeared in Detective Fiction Weekly while Battered Silicon publisher and Sherlock Holmes expert, George Vanderburgh, offers a glimpse at the personal papers of H. P. Lovecraft and Clark Ashton Smith; and closing out the issue is Pulpster editor emeritus Tony Davis’ “Final Chapters.”
With 52 pages, including ten in color, The Pulpster is a real steal at $11, which includes first class postage for buyers in the United States. Buyers outside the United States will pay more. Write to Mike Chomko at email@example.com and order your copy today. You can also write to Mike for information on back issues or visit our Program Book page for more details.
The cover art for The Pulpster #22 is the work of Walter M. Baumhofer. It originally graced the front cover to the July 1935 issue of Doc Savage Magazine which featured “Quest of Qui” as its lead novel.
August 24, 2013
If you’ve been visiting the PulpFest home page often, you know we try to regularly update our website. So where have all the old posts about our 2013 convention gone? You’ll find them at our new PulpFest 2013 Blogroll page. Click on the link for a play-by-play look at the creation of what many have termed “the best PulpFest of them all,” told through the posts that originally appeared on the convention’s home page during 2012 and 2013.
The image above, based on Walter M. Baumhofer’s front cover painting for the first issue of Doc Savage Magazine, is the original mock-up of PulpFest art designer Chris Kalb’s advertising promo for the 2013 convention.