A Birthday Bash for A. A. Wyn

May 21, 2018 by

Tomorrow will be the 120th anniversary of the birth of A. A. Wyn. A one-time proof reader for a printer, Wyn rose to become the publisher of Ace Magazines — which published both pulps and comic books — and Ace Books.

Born on May 22, 1898, Wyn became an associate editor for Magazine Publishers in 1930. He was promoted to editor in 1931. He became the publisher of the firm’s magazines one year later. Based in New York City, Magazine Publishers produced an array of pulp magazines including ACE MYSTERY, LOVE FICTION MONTHLY, SECRET AGENT-X, SKY BIRDS, SPY STORIES, TEN DETECTIVE ACES, TEN STORY LOVE, WESTERN ACES, and WESTERN TRAILS.

Perhaps the publisher’s most successful title was FLYING ACES. It ran as a fiction magazine for 179 issues — from September 1928 through November 1943. The magazine is best remembered for publishing the adventures of Captain Philip Strange. Created by Donald Keyhoe, the flying ace was also known as “the Brain Devil” and “the Phantom Ace of G-2.” He had ESP and other mental powers, and “was so terrifyingly effective as the Allies’ top agent that the Germans were offering a king’s ransom for his death.”

Keyhoe’s stories were a fantastic version of World War I featuring zombies, giant skeletons, exploding heads, invisible airplanes, and more. Strange is believed to have inspired Robert J. Hogan’s adventures of G-8 AND HIS BATTLE ACES. The Keyhoe series ran for nine years and 64 stories. It is currently being reprinted by Age of Aces Books, a regular exhibitor at PulpFest.

FLYING ACES was converted to a non-fiction aviation magazine at the end of 1943. It became FLYING MODELS in 1947. Sold to Carstens Publications in 1969, the former pulp magazine folded in 2014.

Although we won’t be throwing a birthday bash for A. A. Wyn at this year’s PulpFest, you might want to check out this year’s Monster Bash at our convention’s host hotel. The “International Classic Monster Movie Conference and Film Festival,” Monster Bash celebrates the classic horror and science fiction films of the silent era through the 1960s. It’s a film festival: a place to meet the people in the movies and behind the scenes. It’s also a monster memorabilia shopping gala. This year’s Bash will take place June 22 – 24 at the DoubleTree.

PulpFest chairman Jack Cullers and marketing and programming director Mike Chomko will be at this year’s Monster Bash. They’ll be selling science fiction pulps and related materials. They’ll also be promoting July’s PulpFest to the “Monster Boomers” and their “Monster Kids” who will be attending The Bash.

Why not join The Bash and check out our host hotel? Then start planning to attend PulpFest 2018, the destination for fans and collectors of genre fiction — both vintage and new — pop art and illustration, and much more. It will begin on Thursday, July 26, and run through Sunday, July 29.  Join us at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, just north of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The 100th anniversary of the armistice that ended the First World War and the centennial of the birth of Grand Master of Science Fiction Philip José Farmer will be the focal points of this year’s PulpFest. Click our Programming button just below our home page banner to get a preview of all the great programming we’re planning for July.

To join PulpFest 2018, please click the Register button just below our home page banner. To book a room at the DoubleTree, click one of the Book a Room buttons also found on our home page. Then join hundreds of pulp and genre fiction fans at the pop culture center of the universe. You’ll have a great time, especially if you’re planning to stay at the DoubleTree! We look forward to seeing you in July.

(FLYING ACES was one of the leading war pulp titles. Paul Bissell was one of the magazine’s leading artists (and authors) of the 1930s. He painted covers — including the March 1932 number — for both FLYING ACES and its sister title, SKY BIRDS. They’re just two of the war pulps that PulpFest will be exploring at this year’s centennial celebration marking the end of World War I.)

Check Out the DoubleTree at Monster Bash

Jun 17, 2017 by

After eight enjoyable years in Columbus, Ohio, PulpFest has a new home. The 2017 edition of “Summer’s Amazing Pulp Con” will take place July 27 – 30 at the newly and beautifully renovated DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry. Conveniently located at the intersection of three major roadways, the DoubleTree boasts a world-class restaurant in an open air setting. There are many other restaurants nearby — some within walking distance — suitable for a variety of tastes. The more adventurous can discover plenty of dining, shopping, and nightlife just a short drive away in downtown Pittsburgh.

If you are planning to attend PulpFest 2017, you can book your room directly through the PulpFest website. Below the banner at the top of our home page at pulpfest.com you’ll find a link that reads “Book a Room for 2017.” Click on this link and you’ll be redirected to a secure site where you can book a room at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry.

You can also reserve a room by calling 1-800-222-8733. Please be sure to mention PulpFest in order to receive the special convention rate of $125 plus tax per night. Included in the room rate are free Wi-Fi privileges in each sleeping room and the hotel’s lobby, plus two complimentary breakfasts per room for Friday through Sunday. There is ample free parking surrounding the hotel. The DoubleTree also offers a 24-hour fitness center, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, and a sauna. You must book your room by July 5, 2017 in order to get the special convention rate.

If you’d like to check out the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, why not give try it out at our associated convention, Monster Bash? The convention is taking place next weekend, June 23 – 25, right at the PulpFest host hotel.

The “International Classic Monster Movie Conference and Film Festival,” Monster Bash celebrates the classic horror and science fiction films of the silent era through the 1960s. It’s a film festival; a place to meet the people in the movies, behind the movies, and fellow fans of the movies; and a monster memorabilia shopping gala.

Monster Bash is a state of mind — a place, like Skull Island, where our imaginations ignite and burn through our everyday jobs and life. The Bash is an appreciation of these fun movies that we love. Whether it’s THE BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN or THE KILLER SHREWS, if you have fun watching it . . . that’s what Monster Bash is all about.

PulpFest 2017 chairman Jack Cullers and marketing and programming director Mike Chomko will be at this year’s Monster Bash. They’ll be selling science fiction pulps and related materials and promoting next month’s PulpFest to the “Monster Boomers” and their “Monster Kids” who will be attending The Bash.

If you’re planning to attend Monster Bash, please stop by Jack’s and Mike’s tables. If you won’t make The Bash, we hope you are planning to attend PulpFest 2017 and its celebration of pulp fiction and pulp art. Join us July 27 – 30 outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania as we explore the “Hardboiled Dicks, Dangerous Dames, and a Few Psychos” of the pulps. Please book your room right now and join us at the “pop culture center of the universe” at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry for PulpFest 2017.

(Every once in a while, a toy comes along that captivates the kids of America and becomes an overnight sensation. The Frankenstein Model Kit by Aurora was one of those toys. With sales of over one million, the product caught the industry a bit by surprise. Who expected a plastic model kit of a movie monster from 1931 to suddenly become the hot toy of 1961? But it did, leading to a whole line of Universal monster models.

Why did Aurora’s monster kits sell so well? One reason was their amazing box cover paintings, all done by the incredible James Bama. Of course, the artist is very well known to pulp enthusiasts, due to his tremendous cover illustrations featured on Bantam Books’ Doc Savage paperbacks.)