Starting Today — A Daily PulpFest Post!

Jul 2, 2018 by

Since early April, we’ve had an announcement about PulpFest 2018 three days per week. Beginning today, we’ll have at least one post every Monday through Friday. We’ll be maintaining this pace through the beginning of the convention on July 26. We’ll even have an occasional weekend post and at least one post every day during the convention. PulpFest runs through Sunday, July 29, but even our promotion department needs a day off every now and then.

In future posts, we’ll discuss our free giveaways at the convention, highlights from this year’s issue of THE PULPSTER, our PulpFest 2018 dealers, and more, including our deal with ConfluencePittsburgh’s longest-running literary conference, with a strong focus on science fiction, fantasy and horror. It’s taking place the same weekend as summer’s AMAZING pulp con! All you have to do is show your PulpFest badge at the door and you’ll get ten bucks off your daily admission to Confluence.

So what are you waiting for? Don’t live on the edge! Register now for PulpFest 2018 by clicking one of the links on our home page! It’s the only way to be part of “Summer’s Great Pulp Con.”

While you’re at it, you can reserve a room at the beautiful DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry. Just below the PulpFest banner at the top of our 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 reservationYou can also call 1-800-222-8733 to book a room by telephone. However, be sure to mention PulpFest to get the special convention rate. By staying at the DoubleTree by Hilton, you’ll help ensure the convention’s success. Given the convention’s popularity, we urge every member to book a room for PulpFest 2018 as soon as possible.

(During July and August 1942, just months after the United States entered World War II, magazines nationwide featured the American flag on their covers. Adopting the slogan “United We Stand,” some five hundred publications waved the stars and stripes to promote national unity, rally support for the war, and celebrate Independence Day.

For magazine publishers, displaying the flag was a way to prove their loyalty and value to the war effort. For the U. S. government, the campaign was an opportunity to sell bonds and boost morale. The magazines brought home a message of patriotism and ideals worth fighting for. The August 1942 issue of BLUE BOOK featured several flags painted by Herbert Morton Stoops. Also beginning in the same issue was H. Bedford-Jones fifteen-part series, “Flags of Our Fathers.” It would run through the October 1943 issue.)

Joe R. Lansdale on Philip José Farmer

Jun 17, 2018 by

Joe Lansdale likes writing introductions to the short stories in his collections. Readers like reading them. They provide interesting insights into what inspired Joe to write these yarns. In MAD DOG SUMMER AND OTHER STORIES  there’s one short story that is chockablock with references to popular fiction and authors. “The Steam Man of the Prairie and the Dark Rider Get Down: A Dime Novel” is dedicated to Philip Jose Farmer.

In his intro to the short story, Joe refers to his being inspired by a dime novel: “Frank Reade, the Inventor, Chasing the James Boys with his Steam Team.” In Joe’s short story there’s plenty of action, mayhem, violence with H. G. Wells Moorlocks, and imagery that is pure Farmer. Joe writes in his introduction:

“This story is a kind of tribute to the old stuff, with a touch of the new. There is also another influence. Philip José Farmer. If Burroughs is my sentimental favorite of all time, Philip José Farmer is my outright favorite.

He’s a mixed bag.

I don’t love it all. His prose ranges from sloppy to genius. But, good God, when he’s on, he can’t be touched. He has that sense of wonder, and he never lost it. He has the magic.

Bless him. He has kept the inner reaches of my heart alive with that sense of wonder and joy. He reminds me that sf, in the broader sense of its term, is in many ways the most wonderful form of fiction in creation.”

What better way to celebrate the 100th birthday of Philip José Farmer than by registering for Pulpfest 2018/FarmerCon 100? The Science Fiction Grand Master will be one of the main themes of the conventions, with plenty of programming about Farmer and his work. Additionally, the convention will be hosting Joe Lansdale — the author of over forty novels, numerous short stories, and the introduction to THE BEST OF PHILIP JOSÉ FARMER — as its its Guest of Honor.

You can join both conventions by clicking the Register for 2018 button on the PulpFest home page. And don’t forget to book a room at the DoubleTree while you’re visiting the PulpFest site. They’re going fast!

(Joe R. Lansdale’s MAD DOG SUMMER AND OTHER STORIES was first published in hardcover by Subterranean Press in 2004 — featuring jacket art by Timothy Truman — and reprinted in softcover by Golden Gryphon Press in 2006.

Former journalist Tony Davis — a reader and collector of the work of Joe Lansdale since the 1980s — will be interviewing our honored guest on Saturday evening, July 28, at 7:35 PM. Please join Tony and Joe in the PulpFest 2018 programming room at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry.)

Farmer Jam and Memories of Phil

Jun 13, 2018 by

As we’ve mentioned over the last month, not only does 2018 mark the centennial of the armistice that ended The First World War, it is also the hundredth anniversary of the birth of Grand Master of Science Fiction Philip José Farmer. Beginning on Thursday evening, July 26, and running through Sunday, July 29, PulpFest 2018 and its partner, FarmerCon 100will honor both the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I AND the century mark of Philip José Farmer. We’ll be celebrating at the beautiful DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, just outside Pennsylvania’s Steel City.

When Philip José Farmer died on February 25, 2009 at home in Peoria, Illinois, there were countless tributes on the author featured in such diverse forums as LOCUS MAGAZINE and Tor Books to CNN and THE NEW YORK TIMES. PulpFest 2018 guest of honor, Joe Lansdale, credited Farmer with changing the face of science fiction. “I just can’t begin to tell you how important he is to the field as well as other fields,” Lansdale said.

Farmer’s legacy endures and continues to entertain his many fans and readers. Perhaps the best testament to this is the annual FarmerCon gathering, held at PulpFest since 2011. This year, we’re very pleased to welcome our FarmerCon members back to our joint conference, particularly during the centennial year of Philip José Farmer’s birth. We’ll be celebrating the occasion with an expanded FarmerCon programming schedule.

On Saturday, July 28, at 12:30 PM our FarmerCon programming continues with a “Farmer Jam.” Please join a like-minded group of Farmer fans and congregate to share stories, anecdotes, and memories of Phil. All members of FarmerCon 100 and PulpFest 2018 are welcome to read from their favorite Philip José Farmer work or reminisce about the author and his work. In the great tradition of jazz jams, this session is a chance to articulate, in an informal setting, what Farmer meant to you and enjoy the interaction with other fans who share your joy and appreciation for the Science Fiction Grand Master. You can sign up for the jam by visiting the Meteor House table in the PulpFest dealers’ room and reserve a slot. Or feel free to just come along and enjoy the words and cool vibes.

A video of pulp and science fiction luminaries sharing their remembrances of Phil and his work will also be shown throughout the weekend. “Memories of Phil” will run on the hour on both Friday and Saturday afternoons. There will be showings at 1, 2, and 3 PM in one of the meeting rooms on the first floor of the DoubleTree. Stop by the Meteor House table in the PulpFest dealers’ room to learn more about the showing and watch for the “Memories of Phil” banner at Pulpfest 2018/FarmerCon 100. That will get you to the right place.

What better way to celebrate the 100th birthday of Philip José Farmer than by registering for Pulpfest 2018/FarmerCon 100? The Science Fiction Grand Master will be one of the main themes of the conventions, with plenty of programming about Farmer and his work. Also planned is a rare gallery showing of original art by acclaimed writer-illustrator Mark Wheatley, plus the conventions’ Guest of Honor — Joe Lansdale — the author of over forty novels, numerous short stories, and the introduction to THE BEST OF PHILIP JOSÉ FARMER. You can join both conventions by clicking the Register for 2018 button on the PulpFest home page. And don’t forget to book a room at the DoubleTree while you’re visiting the PulpFest site. They’re going fast!

(PulpFest 2018 will host a rare gallery showing of original art by Mark Wheatley. Held in conjunction with the convention, the event will showcase Wheatley’s extensive array of illustrations for the new Christopher Paul Carey novel, SWORDS AGAINST THE MOON MEN.

Mark Wheatley is an Inkpot, Mucker, Gem, Speakeasy, and Eisner award-winning creator. The acclaimed writer-illustrator has written for television, created comic books and graphic novels, illustrated books, designed cutting-edge role-playing games, hosted a weekly radio program, and was an early innovator of the on-line daily comic strip form. For Meteor House, he has provided the cover and interior illustrations for Heidi Ruby Miller’s MAN OF WAR and the forthcoming THE PHILIP JOSÉ FARMER CENTENNIAL COLLECTION. This massive collection will be debuting at PulpFest 2018/FarmerCon 100. Reserve your copy today!)

FarmerCon 100: An Exclusive Interview with Lord Greystoke

Jun 11, 2018 by

Not only does 2018 mark the centennial of the armistice that ended The First World War, it is also the hundredth anniversary of the birth of Grand Master of Science Fiction Philip José Farmer. Beginning on Thursday evening, July 26, and running through Sunday, July 29, PulpFest 2018 and its partner, FarmerCon 100will honor both the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I AND the century mark of Philip José Farmer. We’ll be celebrating at the beautiful DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, just outside Pennsylvania’s Steel City.

It is a matter of public record that while Philip José Farmer was researching his biography TARZAN ALIVE, he met and interviewed in the flesh the man known to the world as Lord Greystoke. On Friday, July 27, experience the shocking truths revealed by the legendary ape-man during that fateful meeting in this dramatic reading of “An Exclusive Interview with Lord Greystoke.” It will feature Chuck Loridans playing the part of the Eighth Duke of Greystoke, Christopher Paul Carey in the role of Philip José Farmer, and Win Scott Eckert presenting the editor’s commentary. It’s part of the celebration of all things Farmer at PulpFest 2018/FarmerCon 100.

Chuck Loridans lives in Shreveport, Louisiana, where he makes his primary living as a hospital groundskeeper. He also teaches art at an after-school program for at risk kids and occasionally makes a little extra money in the visual and performing arts. A huge fan of both Edgar Rice Burroughs and Philip José Farmer, he is the author of “The Daughters of Greystoke” in MYTHS FOR THE MODERN AGE: PHILIP JOSÉ FARMER’S WOLD NEWTON UNIVERSE. He hopes to visit Opar someday.

Christopher Paul Carey is the coauthor with Philip José Farmer of THE SONG OF KWASIN, and the author of EXILES OF KHO; HADON, KING OF OPAR; and BLOOD OF ANCIENT OPAR, all works set in Farmer’s Khokarsa series. His novel SWORDS AGAINST THE MOON MEN is an authorized sequel to Edgar Rice Burroughs’ THE MOON MAID. He has edited four collections of Philip José Farmer’s work — UP FROM THE BOTTOMLESS PIT AND OTHER STORIES, VENUS ON THE HALF-SHELL AND OTHERS, THE OTHER IN THE MIRROR, and (with Win Scott Eckert) TALES OF THE WOLD NEWTON UNIVERSE. He was the coeditor of FARMERPHILE: THE MAGAZINE OF PHILIP JOSÉ FARMER from 2005–2007. His latest book, THE GRANDEST ADVENTURE: WRITINGS ON PHILIP JOSÉ FARMER, debuts in July 2018 in commemoration of the Philip José Farmer centennial.

Win Scott Eckert is the coauthor with Philip José Farmer of the Wold Newton novel THE EVIL IN PEMBERLEY HOUSE and the author of THE SCARLET JAGUAR, both featuring Patricia Wildman, daughter of the pulp hero Doc Wildman, the bronze champion of justice. He is the editor of and a contributor to MYTHS FOR THE MODERN AGE: PHILIP JOSÉ FARMER’S WOLD NEWTON UNIVERSE — a 2007 Locus Awards finalist — and the coeditor with Christopher Paul Carey of TALES OF THE WOLD NEWTON UNIVERSE. He was the coeditor of FARMERPHILE: THE MAGAZINE OF PHILIP JOSÉ FARMER from 2007–2009. In 1997, he launched the first Wold Newton website, The Wold Newton Universe. He is currently completing Philip José Farmer’s manuscript of THE MONSTER ON HOLD, the fourth novel in the Secrets of the Nine series.

What better way to celebrate the 100th birthday of Philip José Farmer than by registering for Pulpfest 2018/FarmerCon 100? The Science Fiction Grand Master will be one of the main themes of the conventions, with plenty of programming about Farmer and his work. Also planned is a rare gallery showing of original art by acclaimed writer-illustrator Mark Wheatley, plus the conventions’ Guest of Honor — Joe Lansdale — the author of over forty novels, numerous short stories, and co-author of TARZAN: THE LOST ADVENTURE, a novel left unfinished when Edgar Rice Burroughs passed away in 1950. You can join both conventions by clicking the Register for 2018 button on the PulpFest home page. And don’t forget to book a room at the DoubleTree while you’re visiting the PulpFest site. They’re going fast!

(Philip José Farmer’s biography of the Lord of the Apes — TARZAN ALIVE: A DEFINITIVE BIOGRAPHY OF LORD GREYSTOKE — has been printed in six editions in the United States and Great Britain. The latest edition — released by The University of Nebraska’s Bison Books in 2006 — featured the portrait of the Duke of Greystoke at Westerfalcon Hall, Chamston-Hedding, Yorkshire. It was painted by graphic designer and illustrator Jean-Paul Goude and originally published in ESQUIRE in 1972.)

FarmerCon 100 — The Dark Heart of Loki: Philip José Farmer Visits 1918

Jun 1, 2018 by

Not only does 2018 mark the centennial of the armistice that ended The First World War, it is also the hundredth anniversary of the birth of Grand Master of Science Fiction Philip José Farmer. Beginning on Thursday evening, July 26, and running through Sunday, July 29, PulpFest 2018 and its partner, FarmerCon 100will honor both the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I AND the century mark of Philip José Farmer. We’ll be celebrating at the beautiful DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, just outside Pennsylvania’s Steel City.

Few people think of Philip José Farmer as a pulp writer, but he was a child of the pulps and launched his career in the pulps. Born January 26, 1918 in North Terre Haute, Indiana, Farmer grew up in Peoria, Illinois. He spent much of his childhood reading everything he could find from the classics through the pulps.

Farmer’s interest in the rough-paper magazines of his youth would lead him to pen two biographies about pulp characters  TARZAN ALIVE: A DEFINITIVE BIOGRAPHY OF LORD GREYSTOKE and DOC SAVAGE: HIS APOCALYPTIC LIFE during his career. He would also author official Doc Savage and Tarzan novels: ESCAPE FROM LOKI, and THE DARK HEART OF TIME. Interestingly enough, both stories were set in the year of their author’s birth — 1918.

ESCAPE FROM LOKI concerns a sixteen-year-old Clark Savage as a prisoner-of-war during the First World War. Sent to the escape-proof German prison camp of Loki, the young Savage meets the five men who would later join him in his global fight against evil in the years following the war.

Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Tarzan is the protagonist of THE DARK HEART OF TIME. Set in the fall of 1918, the story has Tarzan searching for his beloved Jane. It is set between Burroughs’ TARZAN THE UNTAMED and TARZAN THE TERRIBLE. With trackers harassing him — sent by an American billionaire who believes the jungle lord holds the secret of immortality — the ape man’s trail leads to the City of God and the Crystal Tree of Time.

Join us on Saturday, July 28, at 9:10 PM as Paul Spiteri moderates a discussion with Christopher Paul Carey and Win Scott Eckert about “The Dark Heart of Loki: Philip José Farmer Visits 1918.” Carey will discuss the hidden secrets of ESCAPE FROM LOKI and THE DARK HEART OF TIME. He will also have on hand his forthcoming book, THE GRANDEST ADVENTURE: WRITINGS ON PHILIP JOSÉ FARMER, featuring several essays on ESCAPE FROM LOKI. Eckert’s focus will be his introduction to the new Meteor House edition of TARZAN AND THE DARK HEART OF TIME. The new volume will be released at PulpFest 2018/FarmerCon 100.

Enjoy this great panel and a ten-dollar discount off the daily admission to Confluence. It’s taking place the same weekend as summer’s AMAZING pulp con! All you have to do is show your PulpFest badge at the door to Pittsburgh’s long-running science fiction, fantasy and horror conference.

What better way to celebrate the 100th birthday of Philip José Farmer than by registering for Pulpfest 2018/FarmerCon 100? The Science Fiction Grand Master will be one of the main themes of the conventions, with plenty of programming about Farmer and his work. Also planned is a rare gallery showing of original art by acclaimed writer-illustrator Mark Wheatley, plus the conventions’ Guest of Honor — Joe Lansdale — the author of over forty novels, numerous short stories, and the introduction to THE BEST OF PHILIP JOSÉ FARMER. You can join both conventions by clicking the Register for 2018 button on the PulpFest home page. And don’t forget to book a room at the DoubleTree while you’re visiting the PulpFest site. They’re going fast!

(Stay tuned to www.pulpfest.com. On Friday, May 25, we’ll tell you about the very special plans of Mark Wheatley — cover artist for the Meteor House edition of TARZAN AND THE DARK HEART OF TIME. Authored by Hugo Award winner, Nebula Grand Master, and author of the incredible Riverworld saga, Philip José Farmer, Meteor House will be premiering the new edition of TARZAN AND THE DARK HEART OF TIME and THE PHILIP JOSÉ FARMER CENTENNIAL COLLECTION at this year’s convention. We hope to see you in Mars!)

FarmerCon 100 — Philip José Farmer: His Influence and Legacy

May 30, 2018 by

Not only does 2018 mark the centennial of the armistice that ended The First World War, it is also the hundredth anniversary of the birth of Grand Master of Science Fiction Philip José Farmer. Beginning on Thursday evening, July 26, and running through Sunday, July 29, PulpFest 2018 and its partner, FarmerCon 100will honor both the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I AND the century mark of Philip José Farmer. We’ll be celebrating at the beautiful DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, just outside Pennsylvania’s Steel City.

Few people think of Philip José Farmer as a pulp writer, but he was a child of the pulps and launched his career in the pulps. Before trying his hand at science fiction, he wrote mainstream stories. He sold his first story, “O’Brien and Obrenov,” to ADVENTURE magazine. It was published in the March 1946 issue. His first science fiction story, “The Lovers” — published in the August 1952 STARTLING STORIES — is famous for breaking the taboo on sex in science fiction. It launched his science fiction career and won Farmer the 1952 Hugo Award as the “Most Promising New Talent.”

Over a long career, Farmer continued to write and sell science fiction short stories to such pulps and digests as AMAZING STORIES, ARGOSY, BEYOND FANTASY FICTION, FANTASTIC UNIVERSE, GALAXY, THE MAGAZINE OF FANTASY & SCIENCE FICTION, THE SAINT MYSTERY MAGAZINESCIENCE FICTION PLUSSTARTLING STORIES, THRILLING WONDER STORIESWORLDS OF IF, and WORLDS OF TOMORROW. He also wrote novels and published stories in anthologies. In 1967, he won a second Hugo Award for the story “Riders of the Purple Wage,” published in DANGEROUS VISIONS. Farmer was also one of very few writers to win both the lifetime achievement award from the World Fantasy Society and the Grand Master Award presented by the Science Fiction Writers of America.

When Philip José Farmer died on February 25, 2009 at home in Peoria, Illinois, there were countless tributes on the author featured in such diverse forums as LOCUS MAGAZINE and Tor Books to CNN and THE NEW YORK TIMES. PulpFest 2018 guest of honor, Joe Lansdale, credited Farmer with changing the face of science fiction. “I just can’t begin to tell you how important he is to the field as well as other fields,” Lansdale said.

Farmer’s legacy endures and continues to entertain his many fans and readers. Perhaps the best testament to this is the annual FarmerCon gathering, held at PulpFest since 2011. This year, we’re very pleased to welcome our FarmerCon members back to our joint conference, particularly during the centennial year of Philip José Farmer’s birth. We’ll be celebrating the occasion with an expanded FarmerCon programming schedule.

On Friday, July 27, at 7 PM our FarmerCon programming continues with “100 Years of Philip José Farmer: His Influence and Legacy,” a panel featuring authors Joe Lansdale and Christopher Paul Carey, artist and illustrator Mark Wheatley, and FarmerCon co-founder and Meteor House publisher Mike Croteau. They’ll be discussing the importance of the author to the fields of science fiction and fantasy, as well as his importance to the many fans and readers of his work.

What better way to celebrate the 100th birthday of Philip José Farmer than by registering for Pulpfest 2018/FarmerCon 100? The Science Fiction Grand Master will be one of the main themes of the conventions, with plenty of programming about Farmer and his work. Also planned is a rare gallery showing of original art by acclaimed writer-illustrator Mark Wheatley, plus the conventions’ Guest of Honor — Joe Lansdale — the author of over forty novels, numerous short stories, and the introduction to THE BEST OF PHILIP JOSÉ FARMER. You can join both conventions by clicking the Register for 2018 button on the PulpFest home page. And don’t forget to book a room at the DoubleTree while you’re visiting the PulpFest site. They’re going fast!

(In the late 1990s, one of the local newspapers published an article on Philip José Farmer. It was illustrated by a picture of the author, seated in front of some of his book cases. The same photograph was used for Farmer’s obituary in THE DAILY TELEGRAPH, a national British daily founded by Arthur B. Sleigh in 1855.)

FarmerCon 100: Moi, Tarzan!

May 16, 2018 by

Not only does 2018 mark the centennial of the armistice that ended The First World War, it is also the hundredth anniversary of the birth of Grand Master of Science Fiction Philip José Farmer. Beginning on Thursday evening, July 26, and running through Sunday, July 29, PulpFest 2018 and its partner, FarmerCon 100will honor both the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I AND the century mark of Philip José Farmer. We’ll be celebrating at the beautiful DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, just outside Pennsylvania’s Steel City.

As a child, Philip José Farmer discovered the work of Edgar Rice Burroughs. Farmer’s interest in the popular pulp writer would lead him to pen a biography of Burroughs’ best-known creation. Entitled TARZAN ALIVE: A DEFINITIVE BIOGRAPHY OF LORD GREYSTOKE, the book revealed that the “character” known as Tarzan was, in fact, based on a real, living person. It also served to introduce the Wold Newton Family mythos, a concept that may be one of Farmer’s most enduring creations.

Since 2011, PulpFest has been hosting its convention with the help of FarmerCon. We’re very pleased to welcome our FarmerCon members back to our joint conference, particularly during the centennial year of Philip José Farmer’s birth. We’ll be celebrating the occasion with an expanded FarmerCon programming schedule.

On Thursday, July 26, at 11:25 PM our FarmerCon programming continues with a showing of the excellent and informative French documentary MOI, TARZAN. Set in an English castle, this French documentary features George McWhorter, editor emeritus of THE BURROUGHS BULLETIN, Philip José Farmer, and popular culture expert Francis Lacassin in a discussion about Edgar Rice Burroughs’ most famous creation, Tarzan. An exploration of the fabulous jungle lord, the film adopts the viewpoint that Tarzan was a real person. MOI, TARZAN is full of fun, fancy and mystery. Here’s a link to a trailer for the film: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3-nvueuWYIw.

What better way to celebrate the 100th birthday of Philip José Farmer than by registering for Pulpfest 2018/FarmerCon 100? The Science Fiction Grand Master will be one of the main themes of the conventions, with plenty of programming about Farmer and his work. Also on hand will be the conventions’ Guest of Honor — Joe Lansdale — the author of over forty novels, numerous short stories, and co-author of TARZAN: THE LOST ADVENTURE, a novel left unfinished when Edgar Rice Burroughs passed away in 1950. You can join both conventions by clicking the Register for 2018 button on the PulpFest home page. And don’t forget to book a room at the DoubleTree while you’re visiting the PulpFest site. They’re going fast!

(Philip José Farmer’s biography of the Lord of the Apes — TARZAN ALIVE: A DEFINITIVE BIOGRAPHY OF LORD GREYSTOKE — has been printed in six editions in the United States and Great Britain. The first paperback edition — released by Popular Library in 1973 — featured front cover art by artist and illustrator Richard Amsel.)

 

FarmerCon 100 — World Building and Writing in the Nine Continuity

May 14, 2018 by

 

Last week, we discussed how 2018 marks the centennial of the armistice that ended The First World War. Our current year is also the hundredth anniversary of the birth of Grand Master of Science Fiction Philip José Farmer. Beginning on Thursday evening, July 26, and running through Sunday, July 29, PulpFest 2018 and its partner, FarmerCon 100will honor both the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I AND the century mark of Philip José Farmer. We’ll be celebrating at the beautiful DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, just outside Pennsylvania’s Steel City.

Few people think of Philip José Farmer as a pulp writer, but he was a child of the pulps and launched his career in the pulps. Born January 26, 1918 in North Terre Haute, Indiana, Farmer grew up in Peoria, Illinois. He spent much of his childhood reading everything he could find in the local library and drug store. Farmer read everything from the classics by Baum, Carroll, Cervantes, Chesterton, Cooper, Defoe, Dickens, Dumas, Homer, London, Shaw, Stevenson, Swift, Thackeray, Twain, Verne, Wells, and others, to popular fiction by Burroughs, Doyle, Haggard, and on through the pulps: AIR WONDER STORIES, ARGOSY, BLUE BOOK, DOC SAVAGE, SCIENCE WONDER STORIES, THE SHADOW, WEIRD TALES, and more.

Farmer’s interest in the rough-paper magazines of his youth would lead him to pen two biographies about pulp characters  TARZAN ALIVE: A DEFINITIVE BIOGRAPHY OF LORD GREYSTOKE and DOC SAVAGE: HIS APOCALYPTIC LIFE. He would also author official Doc Savage and Tarzan novels: ESCAPE FROM LOKI, and THE DARK HEART OF TIME. Farmer would also create “The Secrets of the Nine” series, beginning with the controversial novel A FEAST UNKNOWN, followed by two more straightforward adventure novels, LORD OF THE TREES and THE MAD GOBLIN.

Since 2011, PulpFest has been hosting its convention with the help of FarmerCon. We’re very pleased to welcome our FarmerCon members back to our joint conference, particularly during the centennial year of Philip José Farmer’s birth. We’ll be celebrating the occasion with an expanded FarmerCon programming schedule. The fun begins on Thursday, July 26, at 10:45 PM, with a panel exploring “World Building and Writing in the Nine Continuity.” England’s Paul Spiteri, who served as co-editor of FARMERPHILE and the collection PEARLS OF PEORIA, and also collaborated with Phil, finishing the short story “Getting Ready to Write,” will be moderating the panel.

Paul will be joined by authors Win Scott Eckert and Frank Schildiner to talk about the challenges and rewarding aspects of writing in the world of Philip José Farmer’s Lord Grandrith, Doc Caliban, and the Nine.

Win Scott Eckert is the coauthor with Philip José Farmer of the Wold Newton novel THE EVIL IN PEMBERLEY HOUSE and the author of THE SCARLET JAGUAR, both featuring Patricia Wildman, daughter of the pulp hero Doc Wildman, the bronze champion of justice. He is the editor of and a contributor to MYTHS FOR THE MODERN AGE: PHILIP JOSÉ FARMER’S WOLD NEWTON UNIVERSE, a 2007 Locus Awards finalist, and the coeditor with Christopher Paul Carey of TALES OF THE WOLD NEWTON UNIVERSE. He was the coeditor of FARMERPHILE from 2007–2009. In 1997, he launched the first Wold Newton website, The Wold Newton Universe. He is currently completing Philip José Farmer’s manuscript of THE MONSTER ON HOLD, the fourth novel in the Secrets of the Nine series.

Frank Schildiner is a martial arts instructor at Amorosi’s Mixed Martial Arts in New Jersey. He is the writer of the novels, THE QUEST OF FRANKENSTEINTHE TRIUMPH OF FRANKENSTEIN, NAPOLEON’S VAMPIRE HUNTERS,  THE DEVIL PLAGUE OF NAPLES, and the forthcoming SATANIC GANGS OF NEW YORK. He is a regular contributor to the fictional series TALES OF THE SHADOWMEN and has been published in THE NEW ADVENTURES OF THUNDER JIM WADE, Airship 27’s SECRET AGENT X series, THE LONE RANGER AND TONTO: FRONTIER JUSTICETHE AVENGER: THE JUSTICE FILES, and other anthologies. He resides in New Jersey with his wife Gail, who is his top supporter and two cats who are indifferent on the subject.

What better way to celebrate the 100th birthday of Philip José Farmer than by registering for Pulpfest 2018/FarmerCon 100? The Science Fiction Grand Master will be one of the main themes of the conventions, with plenty of programming about Farmer and his work. Also on hand will be the conventions’ Guest of Honor — Joe Lansdale — the author of over forty novels, numerous short stories, and the introduction to THE BEST OF PHILIP JOSÉ FARMERYou can join both conventions by clicking the Register for 2018 button on the PulpFest home page. And don’t forget to book a room at the DoubleTree while you’re visiting the PulpFest site. They’re going fast!

(Philip José Farmer began his “Secrets of the Nine” series with the controversial novel, A FEAST UNKNOWN. First published in 1969 by Essex House, the book has gone through numerous international printings, including four by Playboy Press in the early 1980s. Each featured front cover art by Jordi Penalva.

Farmer’s THE MAD GOBLIN was originally released in 1970 by Ace Books as part of their double line of paperbacks. The other half the book featured LORD OF THE TREES. Both sides of the book featured covers created by Gray Morrow, a comic book and paperback artist who also illustrated many science-fiction magazines. He was nominated for the Hugo Award for best professional artist in 1966, 1967, and 1968.)

100 Years of Philip José Farmer

Jan 22, 2018 by

Over the last few months, we’ve been discussing that 2018 marks the centennial of the armistice that ended The First World War. However, our current year is also the hundredth anniversary of the birth of Grand Master of Science Fiction Philip José Farmer. Beginning on Thursday evening, July 26, and running through Sunday, July 29, PulpFest 2018 will honor both the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I AND the century mark of Philip José Farmer. We’ll be celebrating at the beautiful DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, just outside Pennsylvania’s Steel City.

Few people think of Philip José Farmer as a pulp writer, but he was a child of the pulps and launched his career in the pulps. Born January 26, 1918 in North Terre Haute, Indiana, Farmer grew up in Peoria, Illinois. He spent much of his childhood reading everything he could find in the local library and drug store. From the classics by Baum, Carroll, Cervantes, Chesterton, Cooper, Defoe, Dickens, Dumas, Homer, London, Shaw, Stevenson, Swift, Thackeray, Twain, Verne, Wells, and others, to popular fiction by Burroughs, Doyle, Haggard, and on through the pulps: AIR WONDER STORIES, ARGOSY, BLUE BOOK, DOC SAVAGE, SCIENCE WONDER STORIES, THE SHADOW, WEIRD TALES  . . . the list goes on and on. He also read the Bible and many books on mythology.

His wide reading prepared Farmer well for a career as a writer. Before trying his hand at science fiction, he wrote mainstream stories. He sold his first story, “O’Brien and Obrenov,” to ADVENTURE magazine. It was published in the March 1946 issue. His first science fiction story, “The Lovers” — published in the August 1952 STARTLING STORIES — is famous for breaking the taboo on sex in science fiction. It launched his science fiction career and won Farmer the 1952 Hugo Award as the “Most Promising New Talent.”

After selling several more stories to STARTLING STORIES, THRILLING WONDER STORIES, and SCIENCE FICTION PLUS, Farmer entered and won the Shasta Prize Novel Contest in 1953. The award included a grand prize of four thousand dollars (about $36,000 in today’s dollars). Though married with two children, Farmer now felt confident enough to quit his job and become a full-time writer. Unfortunately, his career immediately hit a stumbling block when Shasta didn’t pay him the prize money. Instead they strung him along asking for rewrites, while investing the money in the publication of another book. It bombed. Farmer was never paid and by the time the truth came out, he had lost his house and had to find full-time work.

After falling back on manual labor jobs for a few years, Farmer and his family left Peoria in 1956 and moved around the country. He worked as a technical writer for the space-defense industry, eventually ending up in Beverly Hills in 1965. All the while, he continued to write and sell science fiction short stories to such pulps and digests as AMAZING STORIES, ARGOSY, BEYOND FANTASY FICTION, FANTASTIC UNIVERSE, GALAXY, THE MAGAZINE OF FANTASY & SCIENCE FICTION, THE SAINT MYSTERY MAGAZINEWORLDS OF IF, and WORLDS OF TOMORROW. He also wrote novels and published stories in anthologies. In 1967, he won a second Hugo Award for the story “Riders of the Purple Wage,” published in DANGEROUS VISIONS. Then — just before the moon landing in 1969 — he was laid off from his technical writing job. Once again, Farmer turned to full-time fiction writing.

In 1970, the Farmers moved back to Peoria and his writing career again began to take off. His World of Tiers series was very popular and he received his third Hugo Award for the first novel in the Riverworld series, TO YOUR SCATTERED BODIES GO. A reworking of the novel that had won the Shasta contest, Farmer’s novel won the 1972 Hugo. Soon thereafter, his career hit another obstacle: writer’s block.

Although fans and publishers alike were clamoring for the next World of Tiers or Riverworld title, Farmer seemed to be out of ideas. Unable to work in those worlds, he spent the next few years looking to his favorite literature and the pulps for inspiration: THE WIND WHALES OF ISHMAEL (a science fiction sequel to MOBY DICK); THE OTHER LOG OF PHILEAS FOGG (the true story behind Jules Verne’s AROUND THE WORLD IN EIGHTY DAYS); THE ADVENTURE OF THE PEERLESS PEER (a pastiche of Tarzan and Sherlock Holmes); HADON OF ANCIENT OPAR and FLIGHT TO OPAR (inspired by Edgar Rice Burroughs and H. Rider Haggard); and VENUS ON THE HALF-SHELL, written “by” Kilgore Trout (wherein Farmer pretended he was Kurt Vonnegut Jr.’s sad-sack science fiction author).

Farmer also penned two biographies during this period — TARZAN ALIVE: A DEFINITIVE BIOGRAPHY OF LORD GREYSTOKE and DOC SAVAGE: HIS APOCALYPTIC LIFE — revealing to the world that the “characters” known as Tarzan and Doc Savage were, in fact, based on real, living people. These books also served to introduce the Wold Newton Family mythos, a concept that may be one of his most enduring creations.

With his writer’s block vanquished by the end of the 1970s, Farmer continued the Riverworld and World of Tiers series. The next two decades also saw the fulfillment of his life-long ambitions to write an Oz book and to author official Doc Savage and Tarzan novels: A BARNSTORMER IN OZ, ESCAPE FROM LOKI, and THE DARK HEART OF TIME.

Farmer enjoyed a long career and attended hundreds of conventions, many of them as a guest of honor  (including PulpCon in 1989). Although he retired from writing in 1999, he worked with an ardent fan base over the next decade that continued to make his work available. Projects ranged from a mammoth collection of rarities (PEARLS FROM PEORIA, published in 2006) to unsold mainstream stories written at the start of his career and collected alongside an unpublished novel (UP FROM THE BOTTOMLESS PIT AND OTHER STORIES, published in 2007). Also published were new editions of novels, new collections, and unfinished works, completed in collaboration with others: “Getting Ready to Write” (with Paul Spiteri), THE CITY BEYOND PLAY and DAYWORLD: A HOLE IN WEDNESDAY (both with Danny Adams), THE EVIL IN PEMBERLEY HOUSE (with Win Scott Eckert), and THE SONG OF KWASIN (with Christopher Paul Carey).

Philip José Farmer passed away on February 25, 2009, shortly after his 91st birthday. His legacy endures and continues to entertain his many fans and readers. Perhaps the best testament to this is the annual FarmerCon gathering, held at PulpFest since 2011.

What better way to celebrate the 100th birthday of Philip José Farmer than by registering for Pulpfest 2018/FarmerCon 100? The Science Fiction Grand Master will be one of the main themes of the conventions, with plenty of programing about Farmer and his work. Also on hand will be the conventions’ Guest of Honor — Joe Lansdale — the author of over forty novels, numerous short stories, and the introduction to THE BEST OF PHILIP JOSÉ FARMERYou can join both conventions by clicking the Register for 2018 button on the PulpFest home page. And don’t forget to book a room at the DoubleTree while you’re visiting the PulpFest site. They’re going fast!

(While working in the aerospace and defense industry as a technical writer, Philip José Farmer continued to write and sell science fiction to the pulp and digest markets. THE MAGAZINE OF FANTASY AND SCIENCE FICTION — which published “Open to Me, My Sister” in its May 1960 issue, featuring front cover art by Mel Hunter — was one of many magazines to which he sold.

By the 1970s, Farmer was writing fiction full time, winning the Hugo Award for “Best Novel” in 1972. Additionally, he penned many works inspired by the classics of literature and the pulps of his youth. One of these was the fictional “biography,” DOC SAVAGE: HIS APOCALYPTIC LIFE. A revised edition of this work — with bonus material — was published in 2013 by Meteor House and Altus Press. It featured front cover art by Joe DeVito.

Mike Croteau is one of the founders of FarmerCon and Meteor House. He’s also the founder and one of the developers of Philip José Farmer’s Official Web Page.)

Season’s Greetings from PulpFest

Dec 25, 2017 by

From July 26 – 29, 2018, PulpFest will celebrate the centennial of “The Armistice that Ended The Great War.” The convention will also mark the 100th anniversary of the birth of Grand Master of Science Fiction Philip José Farmer.

We’ll be exploring the so-called “war pulps” of the early twentieth century and the depiction of war in popular culture. PulpFest 2018 will feature presentations on art in the war pulps and men’s adventure magazines, plus a look at war comics. We’ll also have expert presentations on air war pulps, Edgar Rice Burroughs and The Great War, and the life and fiction of Leonard Nason, an author who served in the First World War and wrote about his experiences. Robert Gould, the son of pulp illustrator John Fleming Gould — who contributed interior illustrations to G-8 AND HIS BATTLE ACES and many other pulps — will also be on hand to discuss his father’s life and artistic career.

Of course, we’ll also be celebrating the life and legacy of science fiction author and pulp fan Philip José Farmer. The members of FARMERCON 100 will be offering panels and presentations on “World Building and Writing in the Nine Continuity,” the author’s novels set in 1918, and much more (including a showing of the French documentary, MOI TARZAN).

And don’t forget about our convention’s Guest of Honor — Joe Lansdale — the author of over forty novels and numerous short stories. He’s also won the Edgar Award, ten Bram Stoker Awards, the Horror Writers Association Lifetime Achievement Award, the British Fantasy Award, the Inkpot Award for Contributions to Science Fiction and Fantasy, and many other honors.

Why not treat yourself to a gift and register for PulpFest 2018? Better yet, bring your entire family. Pittsburgh is a great city to visit, particularly when the Pirates are in town!

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

(Rudolph Belarski painted the cover for the December 20, 1928 issue of Dell Publishing’s WAR STORIES. It’s a particularly moving portrait of a soldier making his way carefully across no-man’s-land. The glare of a flare, rather than that legendary star, lights his way.)