2017 Munsey Award Nominees

May 3, 2017 by

The PulpFest Organizing Committee is pleased to announce that seventeen individuals have been nominated by their peers for the 2017 Munsey Award. 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. Congratulations to all of the nominees for this prestigious award, presented annually at PulpFest.

The nominees listed below — who received multiple nominations — 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 2017 Munsey.

Author, editor, historian, and critic MIKE ASHLEY has a special expertise in the history of magazine science fiction, fantasy, and weird fiction. In 2002, he received a Pilgrim Award from the Science Fiction Research Association in recognition of his distinguished contributions to the study of science fiction. He is the author or co-author of numerous works related to the pulps, science fiction, and fantasy. These include THE AGE OF THE STORYTELLERS: BRITISH POPULAR FICTION MAGAZINES, 1880-1950, ALGERNON BLACKWOOD: A BIO-BIBLIOGRAPHY, “BLUE BOOK — The Slick in Pulp Clothing,” THE GERNSBACK DAYS: A STUDY IN THE EVOLUTION OF MODERN SCIENCE FICTION FROM 1911 TO 1936, MONTHLY TERRORS: AN INDEX TO THE WEIRD FANTASY MAGAZINES PUBLISHED IN THE UNITED STATES AND GREAT BRITAIN, SCIENCE FICTION, FANTASY AND WEIRD FICTION MAGAZINESTHE SUPERNATURAL INDEX: A LISTING OF FANTASY, SUPERNATURAL, OCCULT, WEIRD AND HORROR ANTHOLOGIES, and others. In 2000, Ashley began to publish his multi-part THE HISTORY OF THE SCIENCE-FICTION MAGAZINES, beginning with THE TIME MACHINES: THE STORY OF THE SCIENCE-FICTION PULP MAGAZINES FROM THE BEGINNING TO 1950. Mr. Ashley has also edited many anthologies and single-author collections, often drawing work from the pulps.

JOHN BETANCOURT as publisher of Wildside Press has made available hundreds of stories from the pulp magazines, digests, and early paperbacks available in print and ebook form, particularly in his MEGAPACK format. In the late 1980’s, John also helped to revive WEIRD TALES. The magazine went on to garner a World Fantasy Award in 1992 and a Hugo Award in 2009. In 2015, Betancourt helped the revived WEIRDBOOK get off the ground. Originally published by W. Paul Ganley — for which he won a World Fantasy Award in 1992 — WEIRDBOOK continues to be appear on a regular basis from Betancourt and Wildside Press. He also serves as the publisher of SHERLOCK HOLMES MYSTERY MAGAZINE and the infrequently issued ADVENTURE TALES, which presents classic tales from the pulp magazines.

CAMILLE CAZEDESSUS has been publishing a fanzine devoted to pulp fiction for more than fifty years, first as ERB-DOM and later as THE FANTASTIC COLLECTOR. All told, he has edited and published almost 250 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, and THE POPULAR. Caz continues to publish PULPDOM today as a free, online pulp fanzine.

Probably best known for the SCIENCE FICTION, FANTASY, AND WEIRD FICTION MAGAZINE INDEX that he originally compiled with Steve Miller, WILLIAM CONTENTO 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), THE SUPERNATURAL INDEX (with Mike Ashley), and others. In the last seventeen years, he and Phil Stephensen-Payne have built up the online FictionMags Index into a research juggernaut. It currently lists the contents of over 75,000 issues of thousands of 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.

RON FORTIER has been a professional writer for three decades. In 2007, Ron teamed up with illustrator Rob Davis to start Airship 27 Productions and build a home for new adventures featuring long moribund pulp characters such as the Green Lama, 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 and encourage the creation of new pulp fiction and art. The first PFAs were awarded at the 2010 Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention. Recently, Ron helped publish LEGENDS OF NEW PULP FICTION, an all-new anthology to benefit new pulp publisher, editor, and writer Tommy Hancock, recently diagnosed with congestive heart failure. All proceeds of the book will help Tommy to defray some of his medical bills. On Saturday, July 29, Ron will be moderating a panel on new pulp fiction at PulpFest.

JOEL FRIEMAN worked for many years in the publishing industry. He was the person most responsible for taking The Shadow to a new paperback house, Pyramid/Jove, after it had failed at Bantam Books. It was Joel who worked to have Jim Steranko do the covers for the new Shadow line. Joel was also responsible for the Pocket Books editions of The Spider in the 1970s and, as the fiction editor at Freeway Press, he reprinted several Operator 5 adventures in paperback, featuring cover art by pulp illustrator George Gross. In 1981, Joel purchased Popular Publications from Popular Publications International. Joel has been directly involved with every Popular Publications reprint in any format ever since. He licensed The Spider to paperback numerous times, as well as G-8 and His Battle AcesOperator 5, and numerous novels from ARGOSY for various book projects. Joel rarely attends conventions outside of New York, but he is well known by pulp fans and publishers throughout the country.

For nearly two decades RON HANNA, through his Wild Cat Books operation, selflessly served the pulp community by maintaining interest in the great pulps. Beginning with his fanzine SECRET SANCTUM — which ran for seventeen issues from 1996 – 1999 — Ron 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 published included 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 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.

Although pulp reprints abound in our day and age, such was not only the case. Along with John Gunnison of Adventure House, RICH HARVEY was one of the first small publishers to get the pulp reprint movement off the ground. He started in the pages of his fanzine, PULP ADVENTURES — begun in 1992 — where he published stories from COMPLETE NORTHWEST NOVEL, DIME DETECTIVE, .44 WESTERN MAGAZINE, NEW DETECTIVE MAGAZINE, and other pulps. Two of the highlights were two short stories by Norvell Page, offering the first two adventures of the popular pulp hero The Spider. Rich — along with his onetime partner, Cat Jaster, would go on to reprint two dozen of The Spider’s adventures. As Bold Venture Press, he is currently in the midst of a six-volume series reprinting the complete run of Johnston McCulley’s Zorro tales, publishing unique tales from one of the longest lived pulp magazines, RAILROAD STORIES, “new pulp” adventures in AWESOME TALES, and pulp old and new in the continuing PULP ADVENTURES. Along with his current partner, Audrey Parente, Rich manages the twice-a-year Pulp AdventureCon in two locations, New Jersey and Florida. These one-day events help to bring the world of pulp to a wider geographic range of fans. Rich is also great at communicating personally with fans one-on-one, whether on email or facebook.

CHRIS KALB is known in pulp circles for his hero pulp websites, like The 86th Floor and The Spider Returns, ventures that have helped to attract people who are new to the pulps. 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, including Ed Hulse’s Murania Press. He is also the lead designer for Age of Aces Books, a pulp reprint house that specializes in air war fiction. In 2010, Age of Aces received two National Indie Excellence Awards for Chris’ work on the bestselling THE SPIDER VS. THE EMPIRE STATE. Chris is the designer of PulpFest‘s original website and for many years, put together the convention’s print advertisements.

Like many of us, RICK LAI has dedicated much of his adult life and disposable income to his passion for collecting pulp fiction (in all its permutations). Rick distinguished himself with his erudite and insightful scholarship that has made him respected among Wold Newtonians and purists alike. Rick’s speculative theories on character and continuity may have been inspired by Philip José Farmer, but were never bound by Farmer or anyone else’s parameters. Rick’s brilliant and provocative flights of fantasy informed, inspired, and even infuriated readers, but kept them coming back for the next article or book. Later in life, Rick made the natural progression from scholar to storyteller as he began creating works that supplement and expand upon his literary speculations. Among his many books are CHRONOLOGY OF SHADOWS: A TIMELINE OF THE SHADOW’S EXPLOITS, THE RETURN OF JUDEX, THE REVISED COMPLETE CHRONOLOGY OF BRONZE, RICK LAI’S SECRET HISTORIES: DARING ADVENTURERS, and SHADOWS OF THE OPERA: RETRIBUTION IN BLOOD.

WILLIAM LAMPKIN is a freelance writer/editor and publication designer who 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. He founded the Facebook group Southern Pulpsters in 2015. 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, badges, and other materials. He is a member of the PulpFest organizing committee, serving as the convention’s advertising director.

PHIL STEPHENSEN-PAYNE is a prolific bibliographer and pulp researcher based in the United Kingdom. For many years, he has been compiling extremely useful “working bibliographies,” (often in collaboration with the late Gordon Benson, Jr.) of speculative fiction writers, many of whom got their start writing for the pulps. These bibliographies, numbering about sixty, are some of the best reference resources available today in the area of science fiction and fantasy. Additionally, his Galactic Central website contains an online checklist of all known fiction magazines that is attempting to include the cover to every such magazine ever published. It also indexes bibliographies, pulps, science fiction magazines, and other genre magazines. Stephensen-Payne is also a significant contributor and host to the FictionMags Index — principally edited by William G Contento — and co-author (with Stephen T. Miller and William G. Contento) of the CRIME, MYSTERY, AND GANGSTER FICTION MAGAZINE INDEX, originally released on CD-ROM by Locus Press in 2011.

MICHAEL USLAN originally fell in love with pulp characters by listening to rebroadcasts of The Shadow radio show when he was a kid. When the Shadow Belmont paperbacks began to come out, followed by the Doc Savage paperbacks and then the Avenger paperbacks, he built up his knowledge of the original pulps and poured himself into the history of the industry as well as each of the characters. His first professional job writing comics was for the legendary DC Comics series, THE SHADOW. He went on to write “Night of the Avenger” in the eleventh issue, which to this day is considered an all-time  classic pulp team-up. In the 1980s, Uslan worked with Walter Gibson on a movie project, and learned so much about the pulps and specifically The Shadow direct from the primary source. More recently, Michael wrote the graphic novel, “The Shadow/Green Hornet: Dark Nights” for Dynamite as well as the mini-series, “Justice, Inc.,” the first-ever team-up of the three great Street and Smith pulp characters, The Shadow, Doc Savage, and The Avenger. Turning to old-time-radio for inspiration, Uslan also wrote the graphic novel, LONE RANGER/GREEN HORNET: CHAMPIONS OF JUSTICE. Michael Uslan has done so much to keep these pulp era characters alive and vibrant in plot-driven, character-driven stories filled with Easter eggs for pulp fans and historical footnotes for the readers in each issue. He has respected the integrity of these characters in the process and respected their creators.

GEORGE VANDERBURGH has published over 600 books through his Battered Silicon Dispatch Box, 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 Publishers 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.

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 was his wont, Chuck immediately started volunteering and making suggestions to the organizing committee. Having enough of his puppy-dog eyes, he was asked to join the team. Chuck is the convention’s technology director and webmaster. When the Internet began to take off, Chuck began Flearun, a Doc Savage group now at Facebook. He is also the creator of the Hidalgo Trading Company — perhaps the closest anyone has come to presenting an online Doc fanzine — and the current editor of the Doc Savage fan magazine THE BRONZE GAZETTE.

For the last twenty-five years, HOWARD WRIGHT has been publishing the Doc Savage fan magazine THE BRONZE GAZETTE. He created his magazine 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 sustained efforts, interest in Doc was maintained and his return to the limelight assured. His final issue of the GAZETTE was published at the beginning of this year. The magazine will be continued by Terry Allen, Kez Wilson, and Chuck Welch, creator of the Hidalgo Trading Company and a member of the PulpFest organizing committee.

DAN ZIMMER has been working to promote greater awareness of pulp artists by producing and distributing ILLUSTRATION MAGAZINE since 2001. He recently published the fiftieth issue of his magazine. Dan has tirelessly contributed his time, expertise and 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 such 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. His 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. Dan has also published illustrated biographies of pulp artists Walter Baumhofer, H. J. Ward, and Norman Saunders through his book-publishing arm, The Illustrated Press. 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.

The recipient of the 2017 Munsey Award will be announced on July 29 as part of the Saturday evening programming, open to all PulpFest 2017 registrants. A limited edition of thirty-six numbered and signed prints, designed by artist and pulp enthusiast David Saunders, serves as the Munsey Award. Congratulations to all of the nominees for the 2017 Munsey Award.

(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 Allen Anderson, Rudolph Belarski, Frederick Blakeslee, Ernest Chiriacka, Rafael DeSoto, John Newton Howitt, J. W. Scott, and others. He is also the author of WALTER BAUMHOFER, NORMAN SAUNDERS, and H. J. WARD, book-length biographies and appreciations of these great pulp artists. David’s website — Field Guide to Wild American Pulp Artists — is a leading source of information for those interested in the artwork found in the pulp magazines.)

Last Call for Munsey Nominations

Apr 28, 2017 by

Every year, PulpFest recognizes the efforts of those who work to keep the pulps alive for this and future generations through its Munsey Award. 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 2017 Munsey are now being accepted. All members of the pulp community, whether they plan to attend PulpFest 2017 or not (of course, we certainly hope that you do attend the convention), 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 prestigious award, please let us know. All members of the pulp community, excepting past winners of the Munsey, Hevelin, or Lamont Awards (which had been awarded by Pulpcon, the predecessor of PulpFest), are eligible. Please send the person’s name and a brief explanation describing why you feel that person should be honored to PulpFest marketing and programming director Mike Chomko, 2217 W. Fairview Street, Allentown, PA 18104-6542 or to mike@pulpfest.com. The deadline for nominations is May 1, 2017.

The recipient of the Munsey Award will be selected through a vote cast by all the living Lamont, Munsey, and Rusty Award winners. The award will be presented on Saturday, July 29, during the convention’s evening programming at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, the host hotel for PulpFest 2017.

Our 2016 Munsey Award winner was Laurie Powers. PulpFest also award a special “retro” Lamont Award to David Saunders You can read about Laurie and David by clicking here. No one was nominated for the Rusty Hevelin Service Award.

(The Munsey Award was created in 2009 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.)

Artist Gloria Stoll Karn to be PulpFest GOH

Feb 27, 2017 by

With 2017 being the year that PulpFest celebrates the hardboiled dicks, dangerous dames, and psychos of the pulps, we’re very pleased to welcome as our Guest of Honor, pulp artist Gloria Stoll Karn. In a field dominated by men, it was highly unusual for a woman to be painting covers for pulp magazines. But at age seventeen, Gloria Stoll began contributing black and white interior illustrations to pulp magazines. In a few years, the young artist was painting covers. How’s that for a dangerous dame?

It was Rafael DeSoto who inspired Gloria to become a commercial artist and introduced her to Popular Publications. A graduate of New York’s High School of Music and Art, Gloria Stoll began her career doing black and white interior illustrations for Popular. This evolved into painting covers for the publisher’s line of women’s pulps, particularly RANGELAND ROMANCES. She also did covers for Popular’s ALL-STORY LOVE, LOVE BOOKLOVE NOVELS, LOVE SHORT STORIES, NEW LOVE, ROMANCE, ROMANCE WESTERN, and Standard Publications’ THRILLING LOVE.

Beginning in late 1943, Stoll also began painting covers for Popular’s mystery and detective pulps. Her work was featured on BLACK MASK, DETECTIVE TALES, DIME MYSTERY MAGAZINE, and NEW DETECTIVE. In addition, she did interior illustrations for ARGOSY magazine. The artist continued working in the pulp field until 1949.

In Ms. Stoll Karn’s own words: “Pulp artists were required to come up with ideas for the magazine covers which reflected the general flavor of the stories within. Moving on to painting covers for mystery and detective magazines involved a radical conceptual switch. It was a surprise when I came up with gruesome ideas and concluded that, within the human psyche, there is a shadow side of which we are often unaware. I am grateful that my work struck a balance which uncovered the dark side within, along with the light side depicting the joys of romance.”

Gloria’s pulp artist career ended abruptly when she married Fred Karn in 1948. The couple moved to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where they raised three children. In the 1950s, Stoll Karn began teaching art classes. Her work has been exhibited at the Carnegie Museum of Art, the Brooklyn Museum’s National Print Annual, and the Pittsburgh Watercolor Society’s International Exhibition. Her work is in the permanent collections of Yale University, the Carnegie Museum of Art, Westinghouse Corporation, the Speed Art Museum, the Brooklyn Museum of Art, and the Pittsburgh Department of Education. She is listed in WHO’S WHO IN AMERICAN ART. Her current work is in abstraction and draws upon her life experience.

PulpFest is very pleased to welcome as its 2017 Guest of Honor, one of the few surviving contributors to the pulp magazine industry, Gloria Stoll Karn. Pulp art historian David Saunders — winner of our 2016 Lamont Award — will be joining Ms. Stoll Karn to discuss her freelance career in the pulps and much more on Saturday evening, July 29, from 7:30 to 8:10 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry — just north of Pennsylvania’s “Steel City.”

We look forward to seeing you at the “pop culture center of the universe” from July 27 through July 30 at the beautiful DoubleTree by Hilton in Mars, Pennsylvania. Please join Gloria Stoll Karn — that “dangerous dame of pulp art” — and PulpFest for our celebration of the hardboiled dicks, dangerous dames, and psychos of the pulps. You can register for the convention by clicking one of the registration buttons on our home page. To make place a reservation with the DoubleTree, please click one of our “book a room” buttons.

Thanks so much to everyone who has reserved a room at our host hotel. By staying at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, you’ve helped to ensure the convention’s success.

(DETECTIVE TALES was the number three title in Popular Publications’ detective pulp group. The publisher’s number one title was DIME DETECTIVE MAGAZINE, which saved Popular from going under during the challenging years of The Great Depression. After that came BLACK MASK, the pulp where the hardboiled detective genre originally took form. Popular had purchased the magazine from Pro-Distributers Publishing in 1940. DETECTIVE TALES ran for eighteen years, mainly on a monthly basis, producing a total of 202 issues. Most of the issues offered twelve stories for ten cents. In 1953, Popular merged it with NEW DETECTIVE to form FIFTEEN DETECTIVE STORIES. Between 1943 and 1945, Gloria Stoll Karn contributed six covers to DETECTIVE TALES, including the July 1945 number.

Although it is best remembered for its action-oriented pulps — magazines such as DIME WESTERN, ARGOSY, G-8 AND HIS BATTLE ACES, and THE SPIDER — Popular also boasted a strong women’s line-up. Although it never approached the popularity of Street & Smith’s LOVE STORY MAGAZINE or Warner Publications’ RANCH ROMANCES, the Popular line featured a number of successful titles. RANGELAND ROMANCES — which debuted with its June 1935 number — was one of its leading pulps for the women’s market. It lasted into 1955 — when it was absorbed by DIME WESTERN MAGAZINE — and ran for over 200 issues. Between 1943 and 1949, Gloria Stoll Karn contributed forty-two covers to RANGELAND ROMANCES, including the July 1944 number.)

 

Season’s Greetings from PulpFest

Dec 25, 2016 by

hardboiledxmasFrom July 27 – 30, 2017, PulpFest will celebrate the “Hardboiled Dicks, Dangerous Dames, and a Few of the Psychos” of the great pulp magazines. It was in such rough-paper periodicals as BLACK MASK and DIME DETECTIVE MAGAZINE that the hardboiled detective genre took shape and flourished. Still inspiring authors and readers across the globe, the hardboiled dick and dangerous dame had to be, as Raymond Chandler suggested, “the best man (or woman) in his world and a good enough man (or woman) for any world.”

The “hard-boiled detectives knew well how the world worked, that it was too often an ugly, unfair and brutal place that buried gentle virtues and kind gestures under spadefuls of smothering darkness …. They understood that they were trying to make a decent living in an often indecent business, but it was more than that. Deep down, they wanted to help humanity, wanted to restore compassion and kindness to the world — wanted, say, for themselves and others to be able to enjoy Christmas like a kid.”

Let’s hope a knight errant of the hardboiled school is around to help this poor woman enjoy her holidays. It’s not looking too good for her. The painting — by David Saunders — and the quote just above — by John Wooley and John McMahan — is from HARD-BOILED CHRISTMAS STORIES, an anthology of ten yuletide homicide tales published in 2012 by Reverse Karma Press. It’s highly recommended.

Here’s wishing everyone a healthy and happy holiday season from your PulpFest organizing committee — Jack and Sally Cullers, Mike Chomko, Bill Lampkin, Barry Traylor, and Chuck Welch

(To thank those members who will be supporting PulpFest in a very special well by staying at our host hotel — the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry — the convention is holding a “Cyber Monday” sale through January 8, 2017. We’re offering those members an opportunity to lock in our 2016 prices for PulpFest 2017. If you act before January 9, you’ll save $5 on your membership fee! Exhibitors will save ten bucks for each table they rent!! What a great deal for the holidays!!!)

Our 2016 Award Winners

Jul 23, 2016 by

Final Munsey AwardLaurie Powers has been named the winner of the 2016 Munsey Award. Nominated by the general pulp community, Laurie was selected through a vote cast by all the living Lamont, Munsey, and Rusty Award winners. The award is a fine art print created by Dan Zimmer of a David Saunders painting, presented annually to a person who has worked for the betterment of the pulp community. J. Barry Traylor, the recipient of the 2014 Rusty Award presented Laurie were her well-deserved Munsey.

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. She has also edited several collections of her grandfather’s work in various genres, releasing a number of previously unpublished stories. In 2013, she helped to arrange the donation of her grandfather’s personal papers as well more than 400 pulp magazines featuring his work to the Rare Books and Manuscripts Library at Ohio State University in Columbus. Laurie also publishes 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 many other topics. 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. At PulpFest 2016, Laurie presented “100 Years of the Specialty Pulp — LOVE STORY MAGAZINE and the Romance Pulp Phenomenon” during our evening programming on Thursday, July 22.

In a surprise announcement during on Friday evening programming on July 23, David Saunders was presented with a special “retro” Lamont Award to recognize his substantial service to the pulp community over the years. Since a limited edition of thirty-six numbered and signed prints — designed by David — serves as the Munsey and Rusty awards, it was decided to honor David’s significant contributions to the pulp world with one of the few remaining copies of Pulpcon‘s Lamont Award. The award was presented by our 2015 Munsey Award winner, Stephen T. Miller.

Born in 1954, David Saunders is a New York artist. His work has been collected worldwide and can be found in the Museum of Modern Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Brooklyn Museum of Art, and the Hirschhorn Museum of Art in Washington, DC. He has taught art at Yale, Oberlin, and the Kansas City Art Institute, as well as art schools in France, Korea, Mexico and Japan.

David’s father was the legendary illustrator, Norman Saunders. His mother, Ellene Politis Saunders, worked at Fawcett Publications as Chief Executive Editor for WOMAN’S DAY. In 1972, David became his father’s business secretary, which started a long project to catalog his father’s 7,000 published illustrations. He spent the next seventeen years gathering published examples of his father’s work from used bookshops and submitting each new entry to his father’s inspection. What began as a sentimental hobby for a father and son grew into an impressive archive of 20th century American illustration. After his father’s death in 1989, he completed the archive on his own. He interviewed his father’s surviving associates to record their oral histories. These transcripts helped to broaden his viewpoint of the popular culture publishing industry and also documented vital information about the lives of other artists. Some of this material has been published as biographical profiles in ILLUSTRATION MAGAZINE and several coffee-table art books on pulp artists.

David is, quite probably, the foremost scholar of American pulp illustrators. His free public website, Field Guide to Wild American Pulp Artists, has over three-hundred biographical profiles of these creators of popular culture. David continues to research, document, and promote a greater appreciation of pulp artists. To find out more, please visit davidsaunders.biz, normansaunders.com, and theillustratedpress.com.

Congratulations to both Laurie and David.

Nominations are now being accepted for the 2017 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. Click here for a list of our previous winners.

The deadline for nominations is May 31, 2017. Please click here for additional details. Thanks for your help.