Windy City Pulp & Paper

Mar 11, 2019 by

Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention commemorates the end of its teen years with its 19th convention. It will return to the Westin Lombard Yorktown Center from April 12 to 14 this year. The convention doors open at 11:00 AM on Friday, but Early Bird Shoppers can get in 90 minutes early starting at 9:30 AM. The con suite will be open from 8:00 PM on Thursday, April 11 until Midnight. The convention runs until 4:00 PM on Sunday.

This year’s show marks the 80th anniversary of PLANET STORIES, Fiction House’s interplanetary pulp. That’s not all, of course. As if you needed another reason to gather at Windy City, there’s the annual Windy City Film Festival organized and emceed by the one and only Ed Hulse of Murania Press, plus the Friday and Saturday night Auctions which this year features the collection of the Robert Weinberg Estate. There’s also the Art Shows, the Pulp Factory Awards, panels, author readings, and New Pulp Sunday.

You can bet your bottom dollar, you can lose your blues in that toddlin’ town. Click on the link that starts our post to learn more about the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention or visit the convention’s Facebook page. It’s the most fun you can have for an extended weekend this side of Mars.

While you’re at the show, pick up a PulpFest 2019 post card to learn more about “Summer’s Great Pulp Con.” The convention will begin Thursday evening, August 15, and run through Sunday afternoon, August 18. It will take place just outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry. It’s easy to register, just click the register button below our home page banner. Mars needs pulp fans. Don’t make them invade again.

(The 2019 Windy City poster was adapted from the May 1952 PLANET STORIES with front cover art by Allen Anderson.)




Calling All New Fictioneers . . .

Jan 7, 2019 by


The fictioneers of the first half of the last century did much to shape the popular culture of the 21st Century. While vintage pulp dealers and reprint-specialty publishers are the two most vital means of honoring the achievement of these indefatigable storytellers of yesteryear, PulpFest also celebrates those who carry on the tradition today. 2019 marks the tenth anniversary of PulpFest and the tenth year of New Fictioneers being given a spotlight at PulpFest to read an excerpt from their latest work and answer questions from their readers.

Whether you’re continuing the adventures of a classic pulp character or making your mark with pulp creations of your own, you should connect with your peers and share your work with an appreciative crowd. Friday and Saturday afternoons are dedicated to New Fictioneer readings and Q&A sessions. A limited number of slots are available so don’t hestitate to sign up. Send an email to PulpFest programming director, Mike Chomko at Please provide a brief autobiographical sketch, a description of your work, where you’ve been published, and whether you’re available Friday, Saturday, or either day.

In order to meet the deadline for our 2019 Program, we need your application to be submitted by February 25. Plan to attend PulpFest 2019 where we’ll highlight the many ways that pulp fiction and pulp art have inspired writers, artists, film directors, software developers, game designers, and other creators over the decades. PulpFest 2019 will take place August 15 – 18 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry.

(The photo above is courtesy of the estate of the esteemed pulp historian, Albert Tonik. It’s captioned “The Pulp Writers in 1937.” The gentleman on the left is probably Ralph R. Perry, a regular contributor to many different pulps from the mid-twenties through the early fifties. He is best remembered for his Bellow Bill Williams South Seas adventure stories. The man on the right is not known.)

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120 Years of Hubert Rogers

Dec 17, 2018 by

Hubert Rogers was born December 21, 1898. Best known as ASTOUNDING SCIENCE FICTION‘s primary cover artist from 1939 to 1953, Rogers’ illustrations also graced the covers and interiors of ADVENTURE, ARGOSY, SHORT STORIES, DETECTIVE STORY,  THE WHISPERER, THE WIZARD, ACE-HIGH, WEST, ROMANCE, LOVE STORY, and SPORT STORY. Outside of the pulp world, Rogers worked in the art department of THE NEW YORK HERALD TRIBUNE and later served as art editor of THE NEW YORK TIMES.

Born to a respectable family on Prince Edward Island, his paternal grandfather was a successful shipbuilder who became Lieutenant Governor, Rogers trained at the Acadia Art Academy in Nova Scotia. As an art student of exceptional promise, he was introduced to the prestigious Group of Seven with A. Y. Jackson becoming his lifelong friend and mentor. After enlisting in the Canadian Army to fight in the First World War, Rogers settled in the United States where he continued his art studies in Boston and New York.

Having opened his own art studio in Brooklyn Heights, Rogers had a daughter and ex-wife to support while continuing his studies. He supplemented his income with newspaper work and by freelancing for pulp magazines. Rogers’ association with the pulps would limit his ability to find work with some of the higher-paying slicks and publishing houses.

During the Great Depression, Rogers relocated to New Mexico where he lived and worked among a thriving community of artists and bohemians for five years. The growing volume of pulp assignments brought him back to New York in 1936 where he settled in Greenwich Village and met and married his second wife. Moving back to Canada in 1942, Rogers was employed by the Wartime Information Board in Ottawa where he produced numerous wartime propaganda posters.

After the Second World War, Rogers moved his wife and their young son to Vermont where his second daughter would be born in 1947. Rogers stayed busy with pulp assignments through the early 1950s. Later in life, Rogers painted landscapes and commissioned portraits of U.S. and Canadian politicians and other prominent citizens. He died in Ottawa in 1982 at age 83.

Keep watching our website for more on the pulp greats. Then plan to attend next year’s PulpFest. We’ll be highlighting the many ways that pulp fiction and pulp art have inspired writers, artists, film directors, software developers, game designers, and other creators over the decades. PulpFest 2019 will take place August 15 – 18 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry.

(Among Hubert Rogers many exceptional cover illustrations are Edgar Rice Burroughs’ “Tarzan and the Magic Men” for the September 19, 1936 cover of ARGOSY; numerous covers of ASTOUNDING SCIENCE FICTION illustrating E. E. Smith’s “Skylark” space operas or works by Isaac Asimov and Robert A. Heinlein; and this classic October 1937 cover of ADVENTURE illustrating Thomas McMorrow’s story, “Here’s Luck.”

Pulp historian, Windy City Pulp & Paper organizer, and PulpFest dealer Doug Ellis is currently working with Hubert Rogers’ daughter on a book about the artist and his work.)

Give Thanks for Pulp!

Nov 19, 2018 by

If there’s one thing our media does well, it’s tell us how wrong everything is in our world. This week is a good one to remember to give thanks for all that is right in our lives. It could be our health, our home, our family, our pets, our friends, our hobbies, or our jobs. We all have something in our lives that help us make it through the hard times and the drudgery. These are things for which we should be grateful.

The pulp community has much to be grateful for in particular: dealers and reprint specialty publishers who preserve the treasures of the past; an involved community who meet up at pulp cons across North America several times each year; staying connected online, giving us a thriving network of friends and second families to share our passions and joys.

THE POPULAR MAGAZINE was the prototype pulp magazine bringing Boys’ Own Adventure tales by H. Rider Haggard, H. G. Wells, Rafael Sabatini, Sax Rohmer, John Buchan, Zane Grey, Arthur B. Reeves, Edgar Wallace, and countless others to readers from 1903 to 1931. This seminal Street & Smith publication featured artwork by the likes of N. C. Wyeth and Leslie Thrasher.

Pulp made a very big world accessible to readers who had no internet and a limited ability to travel. Our world shrunk as together we explored new civilizations, discovered new cultures, and transformed our lives in the process. 103 years ago this week, Leslie Thrasher’s cover for THE POPULAR MAGAZINE illustrated just how far our world had come in only half a century since the abolition of slavery.

Another century and another millennium have come and gone since then. Let’s all be thankful for all that is right in the world and look forward to celebrating our shared interests and passions from Thursday, August 15 to Sunday, August 18 when PulpFest 2019 celebrates our shared heritage as “Children of the Pulps.”

You can book your room directly through our website. Book early and don’t miss the chance to stay at the beautiful DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry. Just click the link that reads “Book a Room” below the PulpFest banner. You’ll be redirected to a secure site where you can place your reservation.

(The legendary Leslie Thrasher (1889-1936) was synonymous with THE SATURDAY EVENING POST, but his amazing artwork also graced the covers of RED BOOK, COLLIER’S, LIBERTY, and THE POPULAR MAGAZINE, included the November 20, 1915 number. A veteran of The Great War, he studied under the esteemed Howard Pyle and was a friend and colleague of Norman Rockwell. He suffered respiratory ailments for years following exposure to poison gas during the First World War. Complications from smoke inhalation during a house fire prematurely ended his life at age 47.)

Children of the Pulps Meet Children of the Night

Oct 29, 2018 by

HORROR STORIES was introduced in January 1935 as the sister title to TERROR TALES. Both Popular Publications titles harkened back to pulp’s roots in penny dreadfuls. They fell victim to the wartime paper shortage in 1941. During its six year run, HORROR STORIES boasted some of the genre’s best cover art by the great John Newton Howitt.

The Children of the Pulps, much like “the Children of the Night,” are happily still with us. As Bram Stoker’s Count Dracula noted, “What music they make.” Beginning on Thursday evening, August 15, and running through Sunday, August 18, PulpFest 2019 will celebrate that heritage with “Children of the Pulps and Other Stories,” an examination of the pervasive influence of pulps on contemporary pop culture.

You can book your room directly through our website. Book early and don’t miss the chance to stay at the beautiful DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry. Just click the link that reads “Book a Room” below the PulpFest banner. You’ll be redirected to a secure site where you can place your reservation.


“On the last of October
When dusk is fallen
Children join hands
And circle round me
Singing ghost songs
And love to the harvest moon;
I am a jack-o’-lantern
With terrible teeth
And the children know
I am fooling” to go

To PulpFest 2019!


(Hugh B. Cave’s “Death Calls from the Madhouse” was the lead story for the September 1935 issue of HORROR STORIES. The cover art was by the great John Newton Howitt (1885-1958). An accomplished landscape artist whose work was showcased at fine arts galleries, the prolific Howitt worked for slicks as well as pulps . He was also active in the advertising industry as a graphic artist. His 1936 legal battle with Street & Smith over tax burden established a precedent that benefits artists to this day. Howitt turned his back on pulps in 1939 at the behest of his wife. A veteran of the First World War, Howitt painted propaganda posters for the U.S. Government during World War II.)



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120 Years of Arthur J. Burks

Sep 10, 2018 by

Arthur J. Burks was born September 13, 1898. While his name may not be familiar to the more casual pulp fan, he was a prolific and successful pulp writer who authored more than 800 stories (and possibly as many as 1400 when his many pseudonyms are taken into account). Burks was one of a number of pulp writers who distinguished themselves by averaging more than one million words per year. Regardless of the precise amount of his output, he was a prodigious and highly inventive storyteller.

Born to a farming family in Washington state, Burks was a veteran of both World Wars and retired from the service at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. While stationed in the Caribbean, he witnessed voodoo rituals which inspired his second career as a pulp writer beginning in 1920. Burks wrote countless weird menace, adventure, detective, aviation, and boxing stories for WEIRD TALES, ASTOUNDING STORIES, THRILLING WONDER STORIES, STRANGE TALES, SCIENCE FICTION QUARTERLY, MARVEL SCIENCE STORIES, and many others.

Burks’ series characters included Chinatown detective Dorus Noel and boxer Kid Friel. Burks died at age 75 in May 1974. He remained a writer to the very end. He concentrated on the paranormal and metaphysics beginning in the 1960s and became a popular fixture on the lecture circuit sharing his knowledge with the curious and skeptical alike and offering readings. Much of Burks’ fantasy fiction centers on the metaphysical. One of his best known works (and one of the few to be published in book form), THE GREAT MIRROR (1942) concerns Martian technology utilized by Tibetan monks to foster ESP and matter transmission.

Burks married at age nineteen. He and his wife raised four children. While not one of the legendary names in the pulp world, his work in so many genres and under so many pseudonyms made him a fixture during the golden age of pulp and beyond.

Keep watching our website for more on the pulp greats. Then plan to attend next year’s PulpFest. We’ll be highlighting the many ways that pulp fiction and pulp art have inspired writers, artists, film directors, software developers, game designers, and other creators over the decades. PulpFest 2019 will take place August 15 – 18 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry.

(Arthur J. Burks penned some of WEIRD TALE’s best macabre stories during its early years, including “The Ghosts of Steamboat Coulee” and “Bells of Oceana.” His science fiction story,”The Invading Horde,” was published in the November 1927 number. The cover art for the issue was created by C. C. Senf, the artist who painted most of covers for”The Unique Magazine” from early 1927 through mid-1932.)