Comrades in Arms in the Con Suite

Jun 26, 2019 by

Why do we attend PulpFest? We’re able to find pulps and other collectibles across the Internet. Perhaps it does seems foolish to travel hundreds or even thousands of miles to attend a convention dedicated to magazines that most people know nothing about.

But PulpFest is more than a dealers’ room featuring tens of thousands of pulp magazines, vintage paperbacks, digests, men’s adventure and true crime magazines, original art, first edition hardcovers, genre fiction, series books, reference books, dime novels and story papers, Big Little Books, B-Movies, serials and related paper collectibles, old-time radio shows, and Golden and Silver Age comic books, as well as newspaper adventure strips. PulpFest is people — readers and collectors with a common interest in popular fiction and art. People who realize that the pulps had a profound impact on American popular culture.

Why do we attend PulpFest? According to collector Walker Martin: “It’s a hell of a lot of fun! Not only do you get to roam around a gigantic dealers’ room full of books and pulps, but you get to meet and talk to some of the greatest collectors and dealers. These will lead to future deals and contacts. Plus you can eat and drink with these folks!”

Our hospitality suite will be back at PulpFest 2019. The DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry — our host hotel — will provide a room for our members where they can socialize after a hearty day of collecting in our dealers’ room and partaking in our evening programming. Watch out for our terrific con suite banner featuring art by Pittsburgh’s own pulp artist, Gloria Stoll Karn.

You’ll be able to enjoy drinks and snacks with your comrades in collecting and talk about the things that you love and collect. “What’s your favorite Doc Savage adventure? Did Joan Randall have a thing for Grag the Robot? Remember when Conan bit off that vulture’s head in ‘A Witch Shall Be Born?’ How the hell do you say Tsathoggua? Who’d win a knock-down-drag-out between Wu Fang and Shiwan Khan? Would either stand a chance against Doctor Fu Manchu? Why does the Phantom Detective wear that top hat? How about the Domino Lady and that mask? Isn’t it hard to fight crooks in an evening gown? Who the hell is Pinky Jenkins?”

As Walker Martin said in a recent con report, “. . . at the Double Tree hotel we had our own room, and thanks to AbeBooks.com, the PulpFest committee was able to buy pizzas and craft beer. I would have to say that this was the best beer I’ve ever had at a pulp show. And instead of the usual snack items, the pizza was a real treat.”

These are just a few of the things that you’ll be able to enjoy with your pals — old and new — at PulpFest 2019. You sure can’t do that on your iPhone!

(Come celebrate pulps and popular culture over the long weekend of August 15 – 18 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, just nineteen miles north of the exciting city of Pittsburgh. You can book your room directly through the PulpFest website. Just click the Book a Room button, found on our homepage or call 1-800-222-8733. Be sure to mention PulpFest in order to receive the convention rate. And don’t forget to join us in our hospitality suite.

You won’t have to battle your way into the hospitality suite like Captain Future, the robot Grag, and android Otho seem to be doing on George Rozen’s cover for the Winter 1940 issue of CAPTAIN FUTURE: WIZARD OF SCIENCE. But you may have to fight your way out as your friends hoist another one to Simon Wright, the living brain.

If you are a dealer, publisher, or other business and would like to sponsor our con suite for a night, please write to marketing director Mike Chomko at mike@pulpfest.com or 2217 W Fairview Street, Allentown, PA 18104-6542. Like AbeBooks.com and Meteor House, you’ll soon learn that helping out with our con suite is a great way to get your name out to the pulp and collecting community.)

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Visiting Pittsburgh

Jun 19, 2019 by

If you’re thinking about attending PulpFest 2019, why not bring your spouse or even your whole family? The convention will take place from Thursday evening, August 15, through Sunday afternoon, August 18, at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, just nineteen miles north of the exciting city of Pittsburgh. Once the center of America’s steel industry, Pittsburgh ranks among the top places to live, work, and visit in the United States. The city is consistently recognized by major tourism organizations as a great destination.

Located where the Allegheny and Monongahela converge to form the Ohio River, Pittsburgh was once known as as the “Gateway to the West.” Fort Pitt, a key British fortification during the French and Indian War, also served as the western headquarters of the Continental Army during the American Revolution. By the dawn of the 19th century, roads, canals, and eventually railroads connected Pittsburgh with the major cities of the East Coast. Pittsburgh became a hub of entrepreneurs and skilled craftsmen who created a region seething with the fire and smoke of industry, earning a new nickname, the “Smoky City.” The years following the Civil War saw an unparalleled explosion of creative genius and productivity that attracted enormous capital investment and made Pittsburgh one of the world’s great industrial centers. Steel was king and immigrants in search of a better life eagerly responded to the insatiable demand for labor. Under a mighty cloud of industrial smoke, the “Steel City” prospered and matured, giving birth to philanthropy and cultural institutions that became models for the rest of the United States.

By the 1970s and 1980s, the crippling decline of the steel industry changed the region’s image as well as its economic base. Industries and businesses retooled and diversified. Innovative leaders adapted to this changing world, engineering another remarkable renaissance. By the mid-1980s and again throughout the 2000s, Pittsburgh gained the reputation as one the nation’s most livable cities. Today’s Pittsburgh is a model of adaption, maintaining its work ethic, independence, and inventive spirit while exhibiting an “old world charm” that is cherished by people who care about heritage and preservation. It is a rapidly advancing leader in medicine, education, health care, robotics, software engineering, hi-tech industries, and cultural tourism. With 90 neighborhoods and districts, Pittsburgh is a city to be explored one delightful section at a time. What’s most amazing about the city is the people that make up each of these neighborhoods. They are proud of the heritage reflected on their streets and willing to share their stories of strength, perseverance and triumph.

Pittsburgh’s topography has played a large part in how each neighborhood developed.  Start with the city’s dynamic Downtown and Point State Park. Next, cross one of the three rivers — the Allegheny, the “Mon,” or Ohio — to find unique areas shaped by more than the region’s distinctive and beautiful topography. Natural geographic boundaries such as sloping, wooded hillsides and rivers do their part to define, but Pittsburgh neighborhoods are also known for the clusters of attractions they offer.

Visitors can plan their itineraries by the points of the compass, first focusing on attractions Downtown and in the Strip District (one of the city’s most popular spots for great food and nightlife). Across the Mon is the South SideMount Washington — home to the Duquesne and Monongahela Inclines — Station Square and East Carson Street. On the banks of the Allegheny is North Shore — home to the Pirates and the Steelers, the Rivers CasinoCarnegie Science Center, and the Andy Warhol Museum. Pittsburgh’s East End and Oakland are home to a number of outstanding attractions that owe their existence to the philanthropists who made their fortunes in the city’s early industry. Here you’ll find the Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural HistoryPhipps Conservatory & Botanical Gardens, the 42-story Cathedral of Learning on the University of Pittsburgh campus, and more. While in this corner of the city, don’t miss Shadyside and Squirrel Hill, two walkable neighborhoods with an upscale flavor, and plenty of shopping and dining options. More family fun is waiting on Pittsburgh’s East End in Highland Park, home of the Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium, featuring an indoor penguin exhibit and a rainforest exhibit. In nearby West Mifflin, visit Kennywood Park, the century-old “roller coaster capital of the world.” And, just outside of Pittsburgh are stunning examples of Frank Lloyd Wright’s amazing architecture, including Fallingwater, called one of the “fifty places of a lifetime.”

Pittsburgh is very walkable with hip galleries, shops, dining, nightlife, sports, museums, and more throughout the city and the surrounding region. So while you’re enjoying yourself at PulpFest — the summertime destination for fans and collectors of vintage popular fiction, art, and related materials — your family can be taking in the many sites and sounds of this very vibrant city. You can book your room at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry directly through the PulpFest website. Just click the Book a Room button found on our homepage or call 1-800-222-8733. When calling, please be sure to mention PulpFest in order to receive the convention rate.

Start making your plans now to join us at the “pop culture center of the universe” called PulpFest 2019. We’ll be exploring the many ways pulp fiction and pulp art have inspired and continue to inspire creators. We’re calling this year’s theme “Children of the Pulps and Other Stories,” an examination of the pervasive influence of pulp magazines on contemporary pop culture. And please consider staying a bit longer in the “Gateway to the West,” the “Smoky City,” and the “Steel City” known as Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Below are some resources for conventioneers and their family members to learn more about the many things that PulpFest’s host city has to offer (including a couple of sites about the city’s independent booksellers):

The Atlas Obscura Guide to Hidden Pittsburgh — 43 unusual things to do in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Best Indie Bookstores in Pittsburgh — three stores for lovers of the “old-book smell,” hardcover collectors, and bookaholics on a tight budget.

6 Indie Bookstores You’ll Love — a guide to some of Pittsburgh’s coolest literary hangouts.

11 Independent Bookstores in Pittsburgh Worth Browsing — Pittsburgh’s neighborhoods are alive with thriving, local booksellers.

Pittsburgh Eventful — provides the most popular Pittsburgh events, concerts, movies, comedy, nightlife, and family events.

Pittsburgh Improv Jam — a night of spontaneous, comedic scenes inspired by audience suggestions and performed by experienced improvisers.

Pittsburgh Pirates — the Bucs will be hosting the Chicago Cubs during PulpFest proper and the Washington Nationals for a four-game set from August 19 – 22.

PlanetWare’s Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Pittsburgh — ideas on where to go, what to see, and tips for making the most of your trip.

Popular Pittsburgh — information about one of the most livable cities in the USA and links to help you enjoy the experience.

TripAdvisor Things to Do in Pittsburgh, PA — helping you make the most of every trip.

U. S. News’ Best Things to Do in Pittsburgh — Pittsburgh is full of fun things to do, especially for families.

What’s Next for Pittsburgh — the must-read Pittsburgh publication about the innovative and cool things happening in the region.

VisitPittsburgh.com — the official site of the Greater Pittsburgh Convention & Visitors Bureau.

The visitors bureau also offers these more specified pages to help you plan your visit:

Arts in the Spotlight — arts and culture in the city of Pittsburgh

Discovering a City of Neighborhoods — with 90 neighborhoods and districts, Pittsburgh is a city to be explored one delightful section at a time.

Parks and Green Spaces — the top green spaces and public parks in Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh: City of Champions — a look at the city’s professional sports teams as well as opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts.

Pittsburgh: A Cultural Phenomenon — called one of the best arts and culture destinations in the country, Pittsburgh has built a stellar reputation for the quality and richness of its art and its cultural offerings.

Pittsburgh is Kidsburgh — Pittsburgh is fun, affordable and packed with family entertainment.

Restaurants and Culinary — choose from casual family spots, upscale and romantic eateries, late-night bites or convenient take-out.

Shopping in Pittsburgh — travel in any direction in Pittsburgh and find great shopping to suit every budget and taste.

Things to Do — find out why Pittsburgh has been named one of the best places in the world to visit.

Visitors Guide — get your one-stop guide for everything to see and do in Pittsburgh.

VisitPA — for those who’d like to check out other Pennsylvania destinations, including the birthplace of liberty, the City of Philadelphia.

(Pictured above: a nighttime view of Point State Park and Downtown Pittsburgh from Mount Washington; pouring steel; the Duquesne Incline; Dinosaur Hall, Carnegie Museum of Natural History; and Downtown Pittsburgh from PNC Park — home to the Pittsburgh Pirates — on the city’s North Shore. Remember that the Bucs will be in town during PulpFest 2019. They’ll be hosting the Cubs from August 16 through August 18.

If you’re a science fiction fan, please note that Confluence — the annual science fiction convention sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh science fiction club and Parsec, the region’s speculative fiction society — will be held July 26 – 28 at the Sheraton Pittsburgh Airport Hotel.

If you have any questions about Pittsburgh or Pennsylvania, PulpFest Marketing and Programming Director Mike Chomko is the man to contact. You can reach him at mike@pulpfest.com. For questions about the Pennsylvania Dutch, please write to PulpFest Goodwill Ambassador Barry Traylor at barry@pulpfest.com.)

 

 

Hey Dad! It’s Time to Count the Days to PulpFest!

Jun 14, 2019 by

On Sunday — Father’s Day — it will be sixty days to PulpFest 2019So forget the wallet and the socks, the shaving kit and that many-tools-in-one gadget you can get for eighteen bucks on Amazon. This year, give Dad what he really wants . . . a membership to PulpFest 2019.

PulpFest begins on Thursday, August 15, at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, just outside of Pittsburgh in Mars, PA. Click the Register button below our homepage banner to learn how to get Dad a membership to the summertime gathering of fans of popular fiction and art. Or skip all that and click our PulpFest Paypal page to sign him up.

The dealers’ room at PulpFest features tens of thousands of pulp magazines, vintage paperbacks, digests, men’s adventure and true crime magazines, original art, first edition hardcovers, genre fiction, series books, reference books, dime novels and story papers, Big Little Books, B-Movies, serials and related paper collectibles, old-time radio shows, and Golden and Silver Age comic books, as well as newspaper adventure strips.

PulpFest is particularly known for its programming. This year, we’ll be focusing on the many ways that pulp fiction and pulp art have inspired and continue to inspire creators. We’re calling this year’s theme, “Children of the Pulps and Other Stories,” an examination of the pervasive influence of pulp magazines on pop culture.

And if Dad’s a fan of Science Fiction Grand Master Philip José Farmer, then PulpFest 2019 is the place for him. Since 2011, PulpFest has hosted FarmerCon, a convention that began in Peoria, Illinois, the hometown of Philip José Farmer. Originally a gathering of Farmer fans figuratively, and literally, right outside Phil’s back door, with presentations and picnics at the author’s house.  In 2011, FarmerCon decided to link up with PulpFest and provide Farmer fans with a range of programming, plus a huge room of collectibles.

So what are you waiting for? It’s time to register Dad for a PulpFest 2019 membership. While you’re at it, you can also reserve him a room at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry. Simply click the Book a Room button, found on our homepage. Alternately, you can call 1-800-222-8733 to book a room by telephone. When calling, be sure to mention PulpFest to get the special convention rate. Given the convention’s popularity, we urge everyone to book a hotel room as soon as possible.

It goes without saying that PulpFest not only welcomes dads, but also moms, kids, and everyone in between and beyond. We want everyone to be able to experience “Summer’s Big Pulp Con.” With our terrific programming and spacious dealer’s room, everyone is welcome at PulpFest.

To keep abreast of the convention, please bookmark pulpfest.com or like our Facebook page. Over on Twitter, you’ll find tweets with our updates. You’ll also find selected posts on various newsgroups, including Pulpmags. And don’t forget about our Instagram  page! PulpFest is exploring “The Children of the Pulps” on that site.

(N. C. Wyeth’s painting, “The Call of Spring,” was originally used as the cover art for the first issue of June 1911 of Street & Smith’s general fiction pulp, THE POPULAR MAGAZINE. We believe it’s a very nice fit for the Father’s Day theme featured in our post.

Although pulp magazines had a lurid reputation, many pulps — particularly those of the teens — featured quite tasteful covers. The April 10, 1915 issue of ALL-STORY CAVALIER WEEKLY  — with cover art by Albert Hencke  — is a good example. From about the beginning of 1915 until its last issue in 1920, many covers of Munsey’s ALL-STORY featured portraits of women. Aimed at a general audience, it made perfect sense to use such art to sell the magazine.)

Get a Shirt and Show Your PulpFest Pride!

May 2, 2019 by

A big hit at PulpFest 2018, we still have a few PulpFest T-shirts available for sale. They are available in medium, large, and XL in either blue or black. The cost is $27.50 per shirt, priority mail included.

If you’d like one of these great shirts to show your PulpFest pride, please send your check or money order to David J. Cullers, 1272 Cheatham Way, Bellbrook, OH 45305. You can also pay Jack via Paypal. Please be sure to click the “Send Money to Friends or Family” button when paying via Paypal. After all, if you want to display your PulpFest pride, you’re surely a friend of PulpFest. Please send your payment to jassways@woh.rr.com.

When placing your order, please specify what size and color you prefer. Also include your mailing and email address. This offer is only good in the United States of America. Act now as quantities are limited!

Write to Jack now at jassways@woh.rr.comThese babies won’t last long!

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Buying at PulpFest 2019

Apr 26, 2019 by

PulpFest is a paradise for fans of pulp magazines, digests, vintage paperbacks, original artwork, and other collectibles. Collectors will also find first edition hardcovers, men’s adventure and true crime magazines, series books, dime novels, Big Little Books, B-movies, serials and related paper collectibles, old-time-radio shows, vintage comic books, and more in our spacious dealers’ room. W’ere at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, just nineteen miles north of Pittsburgh.

For those who simply like to read pulp or genre fiction, you’ll find science-fiction hardcovers and paperbacks, mysteries, adventure fiction, and countless pulp reprints from publishers such as Adventure HouseAge of AcesAltus PressMeteor HouseSanctum Books, and Stark House Press. Fans of contemporary fiction will have readings by authors on both Friday and Saturday, plus books for sale from Will Murray’s Adventures in Bronze, Flinch Books, Raw Dog Screaming Press, and other publishers.

In addition to our great dealers’ room, PulpFest 2019 will hold a live auction on Saturday night.

Accommodating over 100 tables, our dealers’ room will be open from 10 AM to 4:45 PM on August 16 and 17. It will be open from 9 AM until 2 PM on Sunday, August 18. Sunday buying and selling opportunities may be limited as many dealers will be packing to return home.

We will also have early-bird shopping on Thursday evening, August 15, from 4 to 8 PM. If you stay at the DoubleTree, PulpFest is pleased to offer free early-bird privileges. That’s a great savings to reward loyal attendees who reduce the convention’s costs by staying at our host hotel. If you stay elsewhere, you can still purchase early-bird privileges for $30.

You can book a room at the DoubleTree by clicking the “Book a Room” button below the PulpFest banner on our home page. You can also reserve a room by calling 1-800-222-8733. Be sure to mention PulpFest to receive the special convention rate of $129 plus tax per night.

To learn more about registering for the convention, please click the “register” button below the PulpFest banner on our home page.

If you read or collect pulps, genre fiction, books, vintage paperbacks or comic books, original artwork, or other pop culture collectibles, PulpFest is the place to be.

(Perhaps you’ll find the November 1941 issue of WEIRD TALES — featuring cover art by Hannes Bok — at this year’s PulpFest. Or how about a copy of John Bruening’s Midnight Guardian novel, HOUR OF DARKNESS? The one with cover art by Tom Gianni.

Start planning now to attend PulpFest and its celebration of mystery, adventure, science fiction, and more. This year, we’ll be focusing on “The Children of the Pulps and Other Stories.” Our programming will explore the many ways pulp fiction and pulp art have inspired and continue to inspire pop culture creators.

Be sure to join PulpFest 2019 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry this summer. We’ll be there August 15 – 18, just outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

If you’d like a copy of our PulpFest 2019 newsletter — packed with information about the convention — you can download a copy by clicking here or by writing to Jack Cullers at 1272 Cheatham Way, Bellbrook, OH 45305 or jack@pulpfest.com.)

Talbot Mundy’s Life of Adventure

Apr 22, 2019 by

Tuesday, April 23, marks the 140th anniversary of the birth of Talbot Mundy. Born William Lancaster Gribbon in Hammersmith, London, Mundy truly led a life of adventure. A natural born storyteller, young William Gribbon started off as the rebellious black sheep of the family. Like many young Victorian Englishmen, he took advantage of colonial opportunities abroad in Africa and India.

These experiences gave him much fodder for his future career as an author, though his own conduct when entrusted with responsibility was considered disgraceful. Unsurprisingly, Mundy portrayed himself as a noble adventurer rather than a scoundrel. He turned to writing in 1911 and quickly found a niche in the pages of ADVENTURE using his newly adopted pseudonym.

His earliest work, including the much-reprinted “Soul of a Regiment,” drew favorable comparisons to Rudyard Kipling. He soon began making use of recurring characters such as his Hindi femme fatale, Yasmini, and the heroic British adventurer, Athelstan King. Both were featured in numerous stories and novels including the bestselling KING OF THE KHYBER RIFLES (1916).

Mundy’s growing interest in Christian Science led him into Theosophical circles. Consequently, his work took on a more mystical bent. This gradual transformation is best seen in the popular Jimgrim series featuring a recurring cast of characters whose eponymous hero is cut from the same cloth as T. E. Lawrence and soon functioned more as a critic of Western imperialism rather than an embodiment of its values.

A growing interest in Buddhism and Eastern philosophy saw Mundy’s work grow more complex and literate in its ambitions, but he never lost his ability to thrill readers. He also penned a series of historical adventures more akin to Harold Lamb than to his contemporary adventure tales, though some (particularly his adventures of Tros of Samothrace) still reflect his Theosophical ambitions. Toward the end of his life, his health and popularity had begun to decline, but he still brought a thrilling spirit of adventure and a fascination for the exotic East to many of the episodes of the long-running radio series JACK ARMSTRONG, THE ALL-AMERICAN BOY that he scripted up until his death in 1940 at age 61.

Mundy mixed with many of the most notable bohemian artists and literati of the early 20th Century. Most pulp fans know of him as an influence on Robert E. Howard (particularly on Howard’s El Borak and Kirby O’Donnell adventures). Talbot Mundy’s works have been collected in recent years by some of the leading pulp nostalgia publishers including Black Dog Books, Altus Press, and Murania Press. The full extent of his influence and literary excellence remains ripe for rediscovery at a later date.

Keep watching our website for more on the pulp greats. Then plan to attend 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. It’s easy to register, just click the register button below our home page banner.

(Beginning in 1911, William Lancaster Gribbon — better known as Talbot Mundy — began his thirty-year association with ADVENTURE. Over the next three decades, the magazine featured many fine covers. However, one of our favorites is the August 1911 number, with cover art by Percy E. Cowen. Published in the issue was the first of many fine short stories that Talbot Mundy authored for the magazine.

Murania Press publishes YASMINI THE INCOMPARABLE by Talbot Mundy on May 1. Altus Press published THE COMPLETE UP AND DOWN THE EARTH TALES by Talbot Mundy in December. Mundy historian and author Brian Taves hosts an active and highly informative Facebook group, TALBOT MUNDY – MASTER OF MYSTICAL ADVENTURE, dedicated to the author. DMR Books has featured “Mundy Mondays” since January as John E. Boyle reviews the author’s works in chronological sequence.)

Starting Today — 3 Posts a Week

Apr 15, 2019 by

Since last August, we’ve had an announcement about PulpFest once a week. Starting today, we’ll release a post every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. We’ll maintain that pace until mid-July. Then we’ll have one post every weekday. Even the PulpFest promotion department needs a day off.

In the next few weeks, we’ll look at Talbot Mundy, upcoming conventions, the Munsey Award, and SCIENCE WONDER STORIES. We’ll also welcome guest writer Sara Light-Waller, author of ANCHOR: A STRANGE TALE OF TIME and the PulpFest 2018 hit, LANDSCAPE OF DARKNESS. Throughout most of May and early June, we’ll explore our 2019 programming schedule. This year’s convention will focus on the pervasive influence of pulp magazines on contemporary pop culture. We hope you can join us at PulpFest 2019 for “Children of the Pulps and Other Stories.”

So what are you waiting for? Register now for PulpFest 2019! There’s no other way to be part of “Summer’s Great Pulp Con.” While you’re at it, reserve a room at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry. Click the “Book a Room” button under the PulpFest banner on our home page. You can also call 1-800-222-8733 to book a room. Be sure to mention PulpFest to get the special convention rate. By staying at the DoubleTree, you’ll help to ensure the convention’s success. Given its popularity, we urge every member to book a hotel room for PulpFest 2019 as soon as possible.

(Designed by PulpFest’s artistic director, William Lampkin, our PulpFest 2019 post card features the work of artist Walter Baumhofer. His painting was originally used as the cover art for the March 1933 number of Street & Smith’s DOC SAVAGE MAGAZINE

Our post cards are being distributed by book stores, comic shops, mail order dealers, conventions, book fairs, and other venues. They publicize all the wonders that are PulpFest 2019. If you’d like to help, please email the convention’s marketing director, Mike Chomko, at mike@pulpfest.com.)

Read All About It! PulpFest 2019!

Apr 1, 2019 by

With the Windy City Pulp and Paperback Convention fast approaching, Jack Cullers and his volunteers have been manning the presses. With the ink barely dry, the latest PULPFEST newsletter is winging your way.

Our newsletter tells all about this year’s convention. You’ll find a programming preview, hotel information, registration and auction instructions, and much more. A registration form for both dealers and regular members is also part of the newsletter.

If you have not received a copy of the PulpFest newsletter by late April, please contact David J. Cullers at jack@pulpfest.com or at 1272 Cheatham Way, Bellbrook, OH 45305. Provide your mailing address and he’ll get one off to you.

If you can’t wait for the mail, you can visit our home page. Click on our registration link and scroll down to the heading that reads “To Learn More.” There, you’ll find a link to our 2019 newsletter.

Although the newsletter contains plenty of info, don’t forget about us here. Be sure to bookmark our home page, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter and InstagramWe’ll have plenty more to tell you before convention time.

Start making your plans to attend PulpFest 2019 and join hundreds of genre fiction fans at the pop-culture center of the universe. We’ll see you August 15 – 18 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, just nineteen miles north of Pittsburgh. If you need a hotel room, you can book one directly through the PulpFest website. Just click the “Book a Room” link below our home page banner or call 1-800-222-8733. Be sure to mention PulpFest in order to receive the convention rate.

(Our 2019 newsletter was written by PulpFest’s marketing and programming director Mike Chomko and designed by advertising director and PULPSTER editor William Lampkin.)

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Join the Winning Team!

Mar 25, 2019 by

Be a PulpFest Sponsor!

 

The late Bill Veeck once said, “There are only two seasons – Winter and Baseball.” In a few days, Major League Baseball starts its 2019 season here in the states. It’s time for you to join the winning team!

Sign up to be a PulpFest sponsor. Join AbeBooks.com — the online marketplace for books and collectibles — and the other fine organizations that have signed on to sponsor summer’s great pulp con.

AbeBooks has been one of our website sponsors since 2016. They have also sponsored the convention’s badges, our banners, the PulpFest program book, and more. Along with  science fiction and fantasy publisher Meteor HouseAbeBooks has also helped to sponsor the PulpFest hospitality suite for the last two years.

AbeBooks is a company with a “passion for pulps!” Show your passion as a PulpFest sponsor. Please contact marketing director Mike Chomko at mike@pulpfest.com. He’ll be happy to work out a sponsorship that meets your level of comfort.

Play ball!!!

(Join the winning team of PulpFest! If you or your organization is interested in discussing a PulpFest sponsorship, please contact Mike Chomko, the convention’s marketing director. Perhaps one of our 2019 banners will feature your logo! Imagine your name on that big round baseball, drawn by Norman Saunders for the July 1950 issue of Red Circle’s COMPLETE SPORTS.

And don’t forget, the Pittsburgh Pirates will be in town during PulpFest 2019. The convention will begin on Thursday evening, August 15, and run through Sunday afternoon, August 18. At PNC Park, the Bucs will be battling the Cubs on August 16 – 18. Pulps and baseball! Who can ask for more?)

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H. J. Ward, Superman Artist

Mar 4, 2019 by

Normally, when we think of Superman’s artists, people such as Wayne Boring, John Byrne, Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez, Dan Jurgens, Alex Ross, Joe Schuster, and Curt Swan come to mind. Why doesn’t pulp artist, H. J. Ward pop into our heads?

Born on March 8, 1909, Ward studied at the Philadelphia School of Industrial Art. His first sale was made to Teck Publishing’s WILD WEST STORIES AND COMPLETE NOVEL MAGAZINE in 1931. According to artist and art historian David Saunders, “Sensational pulp covers by H. J. Ward were soon appearing on ACE-HIGH WESTERN, ARGOSY, DOUBLE DETECTIVE” and other rough-paper magazines. Although Ward sold freelance covers to many publishers, most of his work was done for Harry Donenfeld’s Trojan line of Spicy pulps. Ward painted covers for THE LONE RANGER MAGAZINE, PRIVATE DETECTIVE STORIES, SPICY ADVENTURE STORIES, SPICY DETECTIVE STORIES, SPICY MYSTERY STORIES, and other Trojan pulps.

By 1940, Donenfeld had assumed control of National Allied Publications, the publisher of ACTION COMICS, Superman’s home. Around that time, H. J. Ward was paid $100 to create a nearly life-size portrait of The Man of Steel. Ward’s painting was used to promote THE ADVENTURES OF SUPERMANa radio show that debuted in New York City on February 12, 1940. The painting hung for many years in Harry Donenfeld’s office at DC Comics, and later, in his townhouse. According to Saunders, it was eventually donated to Lehman College, part of the City University of New York.

As we approach the 110th anniversary of the birth of Superman artist H. J. Ward, we recall that “The Man of Steel” is just one of many “Children of the Pulps.” We hope you’ll join PulpFest 2019 from August 15 – 18 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, just north of Pennsylvania’s “Steel City” in Mars, PA. We’ll be celebrating mystery, adventure, science fiction, and more as we focus on the pervasive influence of pulp magazines on pop culture across the globe. Click the “Register” button below our home page banner to learn more about joining “America’s Super Pulp Con!”

(Pulp historian David Saunders learned how the painting “of the guy in a red cape and blue tights came to be hanging in the Lehman College library” while researching his book, H. J. WARD, published in 2012 by The Illustrated Press.

David will be discussing “The Secret Life of Women Pulp Artists” at this year’s PulpFest. We hope you’ll be able to join us on Friday, August 16, for David Saunder’s presentation.)

About New Pulp Tales

Feb 15, 2019 by

Over the years, PulpFest has been a strong supporter of New Pulp: stories by modern writers who recreate the style of fiction that appeared in the pulp magazines of yore. The authors who labored for the rough paper industry liked to call themselves scribes, word-slingers, penny-a-worders, and, perhaps the most favored term of all, fictioneers. At PulpFest 2019, we’ll celebrate today’s fictioneers — the authors writing the new pulp fiction! On Friday and Saturday, the convention will feature a variety of authors reading from their works and fielding questions and comments from their listeners.

On Saturday, August 17, you can also join PulpFest 2019 for “Contemporary Pulp: Writing the New Pulp Fiction.” Moderated by Fu Manchu author William Patrick Maynard, this panel will feature some of today’s leading New Pulp authors. Joining Bill will be John Bruening, Christopher Paul Carey, and Will Murray.

While you’re waiting for the convention, why not try New Pulp Tales? It publishes weekly installments harkening back to the golden era of magazine storytelling. The website was born as a result of Chinese food and a Heidi Ruby Miller class on the rising genre of New Pulp. Like-minded classmates in Seton Hill University’s Writing Popular Fiction Master’s Program joined together to create a web platform where they could create original pulp tales for a modern audience. These tales span the genres of Sword and Sorcery, Weird Fiction, Detective Tales, and Science Fiction. There are currently six ongoing stories to dive into on the site.

Give them a try. You’ll find New Pulp Tales at www.newpulptales.com/.

(At the urging of Death, even The Shadow is giving New Pulp Tales a try. At least that’s what we think George Rozen was trying to depict when he painted the cover art for “The Book of Death.” It was the lead novel for the January 15, 1942 number of Street & Smith’s THE SHADOW.)

Charles Beaumont — A Child of the Pulps

Jan 2, 2019 by

What were the pulps?

Cheaply printed, luridly illustrated, sensationally written magazines of fiction aimed at the lower- and lower-middle-classes.

Were they any good? No. They were great.

DOC SAVAGE, THE SHADOW, THE SPIDER, G-8 AND HIS BATTLE ACES, THE PHANTOM, ADVENTURE, ARGOSY, BLUE BOOK, BLACK MASK, THRILLING WONDER STORIES, MARVEL TALES — and all the hundred-and-one other titles that bedizened the newsstands of America in the halcyon days — provided ecstasy and euphoria of a type unknown to this gloomy generation. They made to crawl deliciously young scalps. They inspired, excited, captivated, hypnotized — and, unexpectedly, instructed — the reckless young . . .

We gave ourselves over wholly to the habit and pursuit of the most potent literary drug known to boy, and all of us suffer withdrawal symptoms to this day.

Charles Beaumont wrote these words for the September 1962 issue of PLAYBOY. He later expanded “The Bloody Pulps” into a chapter for his last book — REMEMBER? REMEMBER? — published by MacMillan in 1963.

A prolific writer of both fiction and nonfiction, Beaumont was born Charles Leroy Nutt on this very day in 1929. According to award-winning writer and editor Roger Anker, “In a career which spanned a brief thirteen years,” Beaumont wrote and sold “ten books, seventy-four short stories, thirteen screenplays (nine of which were produced), two dozen articles and profiles, forty comic stories, fourteen columns, and over seventy teleplays.”

As a teenager, Charles Beaumont published his own fanzine, UTOPIA, and began writing letters to the science fiction pulps. He also began to draw. Collaborating with Ronald Clyne, Beaumont broke into print with a cartoon, published in the October 1943 number of FANTASTIC ADVENTURES. Although he “worked hard, managed to crack most of the pulp magazines with illustrations, graduated to book jackets and slick magazine cartoons,” Beaumont decided he was not an artist. Instead, he turned to writing.

During the summer of 1946, Beaumont met author Ray Bradbury in Los Angeles. Through a mutual interest in comic strips, the two became friends. Bradbury also became Beaumont’s writing mentor, reading and critiquing the budding author’s work. “When I read the first one, I said: ‘Yes. Very definitely. You are a writer,’ recalls Bradbury. ‘It showed immediately. . . . Chuck’s talent was obvious from that very first story.'”

Charles Beaumont’s professional writing career began with the novella, “The Devil, You Say?” published in the January 1951 issue of AMAZING STORIES. Before long, he was appearing in the pulps of his day — primarily digest magazines — IF, IMAGINATION, INFINITY SCIENCE FICTION, THE MAGAZINE OF FANTASY AND SCIENCE FICTION, MANHUNT, ORBIT SCIENCE FICTION and others. In September 1954, Beaumont’s “Black Country” appeared in PLAYBOY. Before long, his stories were appearing in prestigious magazines such as COLLIER’S, ESQUIRE, and THE SATURDAY EVENING POST.

Beaumont also began to write for television, authoring episodes for programs including ALFRED HITCHCOCK PRESENTS, THE D. A.’S MAN, FOUR STAR PLAYHOUSE, HAVE GUN, WILL TRAVEL, NAKED CITY, ONE STEP BEYOND, ROUTE 66, THRILLER, WANTED: DEAD OR ALIVE, and, most importantly, THE TWILIGHT ZONEBeaumont wrote twenty-two episodes for Rod Serling’s classic series. He also penned a number of screenplays including THE HAUNTED PALACE, THE MASQUE OF THE RED DEATH, and THE CIRCUS OF DR. LAO.

At the height of his writing career, Beaumont began to suffer from a mysterious ailment. “By 1964, he could no longer write. Meetings with producers turned disastrous. His speech became slower, more deliberate. His concentration worsened. . . . after a battery of tests at UCLA, Beaumont was diagnosed as having Alzheimer’s Disease; he faced premature senility, aging, and an early death.” Charles Beaumont died on February 21, 1967 at the age of thirty-eight.

Today, we honor the ninetieth anniversary of the birth of Charles Beaumont. From August 15 – 18, PulpFest 2019 will celebrate this fine author and other “Children of the Pulps.” You can click here to download the convention’s 2019 member registration form. You can also book a room directly through the PulpFest website. Just below the PulpFest banner at the top of the convention’s home page,  you’ll find a link that reads “Book a Room.” Click the link and you’ll be redirected to a secure site where you can place your reservation.

We hope to see you this August at the beautiful DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry in Mars, PA.

(Charles Beaumont was about ten years old when the first issue of PLANET STORIES — dated Winter 1939 and featuring front cover art by Frank R. Paul — appeared on American newsstands. He was the perfect age to become “A Child of the Pulps.” Again, we quote from Beaumont’s “The Bloody Pulps,” first published in the September 1962 PLAYBOY:

“If you were a prepubescent American male in the Twenties, the Thirties or the Forties, chances are you performed the ritual. If you were a little too tall, a little too short, a little too fat, skinny, pimply, an only child, painfully shy, awkward, scared of girls, terrified of bullies, poor at your schoolwork (not because you weren’t bright but because you wouldn’t apply yourself), uncomfortable in large crowds, given to brooding, and totally and overwhelmingly convinced of your personal inadequacy in any situation, then you certainly performed it.

Which is to say, you worshiped at the shrine of the pulps.”

Although Beaumont would break into the pulps proper with a story in the January 1951 issue of AMAZING STORIES, most of his early fiction would appear in the science fiction digests. One of these — ORBIT SCIENCE FICTION — featured three Beaumont tales, including “Hair of the Dog” in its July-August 1954 number. Leading pulp artist, Rudolph Belarski, would contribute the front cover art for the issue.)

PulpFest is Back on Instagram!

Dec 4, 2018 by

After 2+ years, PulpFest is back on Instagram. You can follow us at https://www.instagram.com/pulpfest/.

Right now, we’re still working out the rust. But we hope to post photos regularly. Be sure to watch for them.

In the coming days, we plan to feature PulpFest‘s post cards and flyers from the last ten years. But you’ll have to follow us on Instagram to see them.

(We also hope you join PulpFest in August 2019 for “Children of the Pulps and Other Stories.” We plan to explore the many ways pulp fiction and pulp art have influenced writers, artists, film directors, software developers, game designers, and other pop culture creators over the decades. Click the registration button below our home page banner to become a member of PulpFest 2019!)

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