FAQ

Here we’ll try to answer some of the questions we are frequently asked. If you’re still uncertain after scrolling through everything, try one of the email links down at the bottom.

Is that a comic book?

Shadow33-08-01Not at all. It’s a pulp magazine. Pulp magazines are named for the cheap paper on which they were printed. Frank A. Munsey pioneered the format in 1896 with THE ARGOSY. About a decade later, other publishers began to release their own pulp fiction magazines and the industry began to pick up steam, providing one of the primary forms of entertainment during the first half of the twentieth century. After World War II, the demand for pulp magazines waned as a more convenient form of cheap entertainment took hold – paperbacks. These were often just as “pulpy,” since they were often written by many of the same authors. In the fifties, television became the favored form of escapism and the surviving pulps ceased publication. Fiction magazines continued to be published, but in new formats. The science-fiction and mystery digests and “men’s adventure magazines” are considered descendants of the pulps. Comic books were inspired by the pulps — particularly the so-called “hero” pulps such as DOC SAVAGE and THE SHADOW — but pulps are not comic books.

Will material other than pulps be available at the convention?

Although the focus of PulpFest is pulp magazines and related materials, digests, vintage paperbacks, men’s adventure and true crime magazines, first-edition hardcovers, genre fiction, series books, dime novels, original art, Big Little Books, B-movies, serials and related paper collectibles, old-time-radio shows, and Golden and Silver Age as well as pulp-related comic books and games are also allowed. Please remember that PulpFest is not a comic book convention. Sexually explicit material — including PLAYBOY, PENTHOUSE and OUI — is not allowed.

Can I register for PulpFest in advance?

Of course. PulpFest prefers that its members register in advance.

A prepaid, full-weekend membership to PulpFest 2020 will cost $35 for members who will be staying at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry. Also, to reward our loyal attendees who help to defray the convention’s substantial costs by staying at our host hotel, PulpFest is happy to offer free early-bird shopping on Thursday, August 6.

For those members who will not be staying at the DoubleTree, a prepaid, full-weekend membership to PulpFest 2020 will cost $40. If such members desire to participate in early-bird shopping on Thursday evening, it will cost an additional $30.

Please click the Register button below the PulpFest home page banner for further details. If you’d like to pay for your membership via Paypal, you’ll find our Paypal link on our registration page.

Is there a cut-off date for advance registrations?

No advance registrations for PulpFest 2020 will be accepted after Monday, August 3. Our Paypal page will shut down at 10 PM eastern time on that day. Anyone wishing to register for PulpFest 2020 after August 3 will have to do so at the door. A full-weekend membership paid at the door will cost $40.

I have preregistered for PulpFest 2020. Where do I pick up my membership materials?

For those who have preregistered, you will be able to pick up your membership material outside the entrance to our dealers’ room at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry. Early registration will take place on Thursday, August 6, from 3 PM to 7:30 PM, and on Friday morning, August 7, from 9 AM to 10 AM. During the rest of the convention, you will be able to pick up your materials at the convention’s registration table from 10 AM until the closing of the dealers’ room.

When and how can I register at the door for PulpFest 2020?

Registration will be take place outside the entrance to our dealers’ room at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry. Early registration will take place on Thursday, August 6, from 3 PM to 7:30 PM, and on Friday morning, August 7, from 9 AM to 10 AM. Since you are paying at the door, please have your completed registration form on hand to speed up the process. You can download a registration form by clicking here.

For the remainder of the convention, you will be able to register at the entrance as you are approaching the dealers’ room. Just stop at the registration desk during normal business hours. You’ll be able to pay for your registration at the door using cash, check, or credit card.

A full-weekend registration at the door will cost $40. Early-bird shopping privileges on August 6 will be provided free of charge if you are staying at the DoubleTree. If you desire early-bird privileges and are staying elsewhere, the cost will be an additional $30 above your full-weekend registration fee of $40.

A Friday or Saturday one-day pass will cost $20. Sunday passes, available only at the door, will cost $10 (to pay for your program book). Please be aware that many dealers will be packing up on Sunday, August 9. So buying and selling opportunities may be limited.

Children who are accompanied by a parent and are fifteen years of age or younger will be admitted free of charge.

Please click the Register button below the PulpFest home page banner for further details.

Do children have to register for the convention?

All PulpFest attendees must be registered for the convention. However, there will be no charge for children who are fifteen years of age or younger and accompanied by a parent. They will be admitted free of charge. So bring your family!

I can’t attend PulpFest 2020, but I’d like to help. How can I do so?

Supporting memberships for those who cannot attend PulpFest will cost $25. All paying members, including supporting members, will receive a complementary copy of our program book (described below), THE PULPSTER, a $13 value. Please click the Register button below the PulpFest home page banner to become a PulpFest supporting member.

Are there any discounts available to attend PulpFest?

There’s a $5 discount on a full-weekend membership if you are staying at DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry when you pay in advance. No other discounts are currently available.

How can I get a room at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry?

The hotel provides PulpFest with a limited block of rooms. So the sooner you book your room at the DoubleTree, the better chance you have of landing a room. So please book your room as soon as possible. We don’t want you to miss the chance to stay at our terrific host hotel.

In order to book a room at the DoubleTree, go to our homepage at pulpfest.com. Click the Book a Room link below the PulpFest home page banner. You’ll be redirected to a web page where you can book a room at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry for your PulpFest stay.

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 $129 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 each day of your stay. Parking is free. You must book your room by July 22, 2020 in order to get the special convention rate.

What is the deadline to book a room at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry to get the special convention rate?

You must book your room by July 22, 2020 in order to get the special convention rate of $129 plus tax per night.

What are PulpFest’s regular daytime hours?

PulpFest will be open on Friday and Saturday from 10 AM to 4:45 PM. The Sunday hours will be from 9 AM to 2 PM, but buying and selling opportunities may be limited. Please see the early-bird section below for Thursday’s hours.

What about early-bird hours? When are they?

To reward loyal attendees who help to defray the convention’s substantial costs by staying at our host hotel, PulpFest is happy to offer free early-bird privileges. If you do not plan to stay at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry, you can still obtain early-bird privileges with the purchase a full-weekend membership. It will cost $70. You can purchase such memberships in advance or at the door.

Early birds will be allowed into the dealers’ room on Thursday evening while our dealers are setting up their displays. Due to travel conditions and other contingencies, PulpFest cannot guarantee that each and every dealer will be available during early-bird hours. Early-bird hours will begin at 3 PM and end at 7:30 PM on Thursday evening, August 6. There will also be programming during the Thursday evening hours from 8 PM to 1:15 AM.

Please click the Register button below the PulpFest home page banner for further details.

When will dealers be able to set up for the convention?

The dealers’ room will be open for setting up dealer displays from 1 PM to 7:30 PM on Thursday, August 6. Beginning at 3 PM, the dealers’ room will also be open to early-bird shoppers who will be allowed to remain until 7:30 PM. The dealers’ room will open to everyone at 10 AM on Friday, August 7.

All dealers are expected to be set up by 7:30 PM on Thursday evening. There will be one additional hour provided for set-up on Friday morning, beginning at 9 AM. If you are not able to set up your display during these times, please discuss your needs with convention chairman Jack Cullers. You can reach him by email at jack@pulpfest.com or by writing him at 1272 Cheatham Way, Bellbrook, OH 45305.

Our dealers’ room at the DoubleTree is very accessible. It will make unloading and loading for dealers quite easy. Access to the dealers’ room for unloading and loading purposes will be through the ballroom back entrance and the nearby banquet dock. Click here for a map showing the loading area of the hotel and here for a map of the DoubleTree’s Grand Ballroom.

If you need additional help getting to the hotel and/or the loading area, please call or text Jack Cullers at 937.671.1574.

What time is the scheduled programming at PulpFest?

There will be programming during the evening hours on Thursday, August 6, beginning at 8 PM and running until after midnight. There will be programming during the evening hours on Friday and Saturday beginning at 7 PM and running until after midnight. An auction will also be held on Saturday evening.

Author readings will take place on Friday, August 7, beginning at 1 PM and running until 4:25 PM. More readings and an author panel will take place on Saturday, August 8, beginning at 1 PM and running until 3:50 PM. There will also be an auction preview on Friday and Saturday afternoons from 3:45 to 4:45 PM. There will be no programming on Sunday.

Please click the Programming button below the PulpFest home page banner to see our programming schedule.

I’m a contemporary writer. Are there opportunities for me at PulpFest?

Since it began, PulpFest has been a major supporter of contemporary popular fiction writers. “Back in the day,” 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.

Every year, PulpFest offers today’s fictioneers — the authors writing today’s genre fiction — opportunities to read excerpts from their latest work and answer questions from readers. Friday and Saturday afternoons are dedicated to New Fictioneer readings and Q&A sessions. A limited number of slots are available so please don’t hestitate to sign up. Send an email to PulpFest assistant programming director, William Patrick Maynard at wpm@pulpfest.com. Please provide a brief autobiographical sketch, a description of your work, where you’ve been published, and whether you’re available Friday, Saturday, or either day.

The convention also features writing panels and author signings during its afternoon hours. You can write to Bill Maynard for further details.

Will PulpFest have any social activities?

PulpFest 2020 will have a hospitality suite. It will be open during the evening hours, beginning on Thursday, August 6, and running through Saturday, August 8. Further details can be found by clicking here.

The convention may also be organizing a group dinner on Saturday evening, August 8. It will take place at the DoubleTree’s Ember & Vine, the hotel’s world-class restaurant and bar. Further details may be announced at a later date.

I’d like to help with the hospitality suite. How can I do so?

PulpFest accepts cash donations to help stock our hospitality suite with food and beverages. In 2019, John and Maureen Gunnison of Adventure House, David and Daniel Ritter of First Fandom Experience, Richard Meli of Heartwood Books and Art, Mike Croteau, Paul Spiteri and Win Scott Eckert of Meteor House Press, Mike Chomko Books, Mark Redfield and Jennifer Rouse of Redfield Arts Audio, author Christopher Ryan, Steven Spilger of Mr. Polyester Books and Comics, Christopher Maffei of Well-Stacked Books, and Doug Ellis and John Gunnison of the Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention all chipped in to help with our convention suite.

PulpFest will list all hospitality suite sponsors on a sign that will be displayed in the convention suite.

If you would like to help sponsor the PulpFest 2020 hospitality suite, please contact the convention’s marketing director, Mike Chomko, at mike@pulpfest.com.

How can I ship my purchases home from PulpFest ?

There is a FedEx Office Print & Ship Center about a half-mile away from the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry. Located at 19095 Perry Highway in Mars, Pennsylvania, it is open from 8 AM to 8 PM on Saturdays and from 10 AM to 8 PM on Sundays. It is open weekdays from 7 AM until 10 PM.

Where can I ship items that I plan to sell at PulpFest?

You can ship items that you plan to sell at the convention to PulpFest chairman Jack Cullers at 1272 Cheatham Way, Bellbrook, Ohio 45305. Please write to Jack for instructions at the address above or via email at jack@pulpfest.com before shipping anything.

I will be visiting PulpFest for a day. Where can I park?

For those visiting PulpFest for the day, there is ample free parking surrounding the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry.

How can I help to promote PulpFest?

Every year, PulpFest prints thousands of post cards to promote the convention. If you are a retailer who would like to distribute our cards to your customers, please contact Mike Chomko at mike@pulpfest.com or at 2217 W. Fairview St., Allentown, PA 18104-6542. Alternately, if you are associated with a book or collectible show, a fan convention, or someone who will be attending such an event, please write to Mike at one of the addresses above if you want to lend a hand. Any help that you provide will be thoroughly appreciated!

The convention will also be promoted through post-card giveaways at book and comic shops and at collectibles events. It will also purchase print advertising in periodicals including ALTER EGO, PAPERBACK PARADE, and WINDY CITY PULP STORIES. The convention will also make several advertising purchases with Facebook.

How can I have my website listed on the PulpFest website?

If you have a website that you feel will be of interest to our membership, please contact the convention’s marketing director, Mike Chomko, at mike@pulpfest.com. We occasionally include such information in the posts we compose for our homepage to promote the convention.

If you are a dealer with a website who will be selling at PulpFest 2020, please provide Mike Chomko with the address of your site. All registered dealers will be profiled in a series of posts that will run on the PulpFest website during the month of July. Mike will include your website in one of these posts.

How can my company be listed on the PulpFest website?

Although we’ve done away with our links page, we do offer businesses the chance to sponsor our website for one year. The cost is $150 for a one-year sponsorship. If you would like to sponsor the PulpFest home page for one year, please contact the convention’s marketing director, Mike Chomko, at mike@pulpfest.com.

I’ve bookmarked your home page. Is PulpFest on social media?

In addition to our home page at www.pulpfest.com, you’ll also find information on our Facebook site at http://www.facebook.com/PulpFest, our Twitter feed at https://twitter.com/pulpfest, via Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/pulpfest/, and Tumblr at http://pulpfest.tumblr.com/.

Will PulpFest 2020 have a program book?

'The Pulpster' #28 (2019)THE PULPSTER is a longstanding tradition cherished by attendees of summer pulp cons. This highly collectible and informative program book has been published for over twenty years. All paying members (including supporting members) will receive a complementary copy of THE PULPSTER.

THE PULPSTER invites everyone to submit articles and features related to the pulps, pulp collecting, and pulp history for use in the magazine. Your work should be submitted to the editor of THE PULPSTER, William Lampkin. For further details, please click here or write to Bill at bill@pulpfest.com.

The Pulpster also accepts advertising. For further details, please write to Mike Chomko at mike@pulpfest.comPrint specifications for ads can be found at http://thepulpster.com/advertising/.

A limited number of back issues of THE PULPSTER are available through Mike Chomko, Books. Please write to Mike at mike@pulpfest.com about availability. Quantities of all remaining back issues are extremely limited.

Will PulpFest be offering any awards?

PulpFest will be presenting The Munsey Award to a person deserving of recognition. This prestigious prize bears the name of the man who published the first all-fiction pulp magazine, Frank A. Munsey. The Munsey is a limited edition art print created by renowned artist David Saunders. The award will be presented on Saturday evening, August 8.

Are there opportunities to volunteer at the convention?

PulpFest was started by individuals who had volunteered at other conventions over the years. So there are definitely opportunities to help out. If you would like to lend a hand with the convention, please contact our chairman, Jack Cullers. You can reach him via email by writing to jack@pulpfest.com or at 1272 Cheatham Way, Bellbrook, Ohio 45305.

I have a great idea for a programming presentation. Who can I tell?

Mike Chomko is the programming director of PulpFest. He’d love to hear your idea. You can reach him via email at mike@pulpfest.com or via regular mail at 2217 W. Fairview Street, Allentown, PA 18104-6542.

Will PulpFest handle estate auctions?

PulpFest welcomes estate auctions for the simple reason that we would like to see collections stay within the pulp community, helping us to remember the person to whom such pulps once belonged. For further information, please write to Mike Chomko at 2217 W. Fairview Street, Allentown, PA 18104 or via email at mike@pulpfest.com.

Will there be a live auction at this year’s PulpFest?

PulpFest 2020 is currently planning to hold one live auction on Saturday evening, August 8. It will begin at 9 PM, following our programming on Saturday night. This year’s auction will feature material from the collection of the late Carl Joecks. It consists of pulps, digests, vintage paperbacks, first edition hardcovers, underground comics, fanzines, and more. You can learn more about the Joecks Collection by clicking hereKeep watching our website for additional details.

Can members of PulpFest submit items to the auction?

All members of PulpFest can submit items to sell at auction.  All auction lots must have a $20 minimum value. If you plan to offer an auction lot with a reserve price, your reserve must be $50 or more. PulpFest reserves the right to reject any auction material that does not meet our standards. The convention charges sellers 10% of the selling price for anything sold at auction. If a reserve price is placed on an auction lot and it fails to sell, there will be no charge applied. All auction lots must be submitted to PulpFest prior to 1 PM on the day of the auction. If you have questions concerning the auction, please contact programming and marketing director Mike Chomko at mike@pulpfest.com or 2217 W. Fairview Street, Allentown, PA 18104-6542.

Given the extent of the Joecks Collection, PulpFest 2020 will limit member submissions to about fifty better-quality lots.

Does PulpFest publish a newsletter? How can I get a copy?

PulpFest releases its annual newsletter in late March or early April. It offers a great deal of information about each year’s convention. To have a copy mailed to your home, please write to David J. Cullers, 1272 Cheatham Way, Bellbrook, OH 45305 or via email at jack@pulpfest.com.

Why is PulpFest considered “Summer’s Great Pulp Con?” Are there other pulp cons?

PulpFest is one of the largest pulp conventions in the world. It is the only substantial pulp con that takes place during the summer. There are other pulp cons throughout the year. We highlight as many as we can through the posts that appear on our website. Bookmark our home page and visit often to be sure to catch these posts.

Is PulpFest a convention for fans of the movie PULP FICTION?

Pulp FictionAlthough fans of Quentin Tarantino’s award-winning film are more than welcome to attend PulpFest, the focus of the convention is pulp magazines and related material. Pulp magazines are so-called because of the cheap paper on which they were printed. Please click Pulp History along the right side of our home page for further information.

Will there be role-playing games at the convention?

At this point in time, the PulpFest organizing committee is not planning to feature any pulp-related games — including Call of Cthulhu and Spirit of the Century — at PulpFest 2020. Our former game track organizer, Rick Thomas, continues to explore our options.

Will there be a costume contest?

No, there will not be a costume contest. However, if you would like to visit the convention in costume, you are more than welcome to do so.

You still haven’t answered my question.

Sorry, but we are not Doc Savage. We can’t think of everything. If you have another question, try writing to marketing director Mike Chomko, at mike@pulpfest.com. He’ll see if he can find an answer for you.

Still searching for answers? Here’s who to contact….

(George Rozen’s painting for the August 1, 1933 issue of THE SHADOW MAGAZINE is perhaps one of the most iconic images of Walter Gibson’s “Dark Avenger.” To learn more about the man who was The Shadow’s most renowned cover artist, please visit http://www.pulpfest.com/2015/10/george-and-jerome-rozen-at-120/.

Pulp magazines are not the only collectibles that are featured at PulpFest. Digests magazines, vintage and genre paperbacks, men’s adventure and true crime magazines, first-edition hardcovers, series books, dime novels, original art, Big Little Books, B-movies, serials and related paper collectibles, old-time-radio shows, and Golden Age and Silver Age as well as pulp-related comic books and games will also be available. Perhaps you’ll find a copy of DETECTIVE COMICS #27 — dated May 1939 — at the convention. It features cover art by Bob Kane and marks the first appearance of “The Batman.” Kane and Batman writer Bill Finger were inspired by fictional characters such as Sherlock Holmes and Dick Tracy. But the great pulp heroes also served as inspiration for the Dark Knight. The Phantom Detective, Zorro, Doc Savage, The Shadow, and others were important to the comic book character’s development.

Register in advance so you won’t have to fight the opening day crowd at PulpFest. Why struggle like the Golden Amazons in Frank Paul’s painting for the Winter 1939 number of PLANET STORIES? While you won’t meet up with John Murray Reynold’s “scaly ones,” you might have to deal with a long line. Who wants to do that when there’s a roomful of book and paper collectibles waiting to peruse?

Frank R. Paul — the “grandfather of science-fiction art” — painted the cover for the program book of the 13th World Science Fiction Convention — Clevention — held on September 2 – 5, 1955 at the Manger Hotel in Cleveland, Ohio.  Although the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry is not quite as futuristic as Paul’s illustration, the hotel was completely renovated in 2016.

Several pulps, including ARGOSY, BLUE BOOK, and ADVENTURE, eventually became men’s adventure magazines. They were marketed to the returning veterans of the Second World War and the Korean War. Beginning in 1959, ADVENTURE began to regularly feature “good girl art” on its covers. A perfect example is the December 1962 issue with cover art by prolific pulp artist Norman Saunders. Not only will you find pulp magazines and related materials, you’ll also come across digests, vintage and genre paperbacks, men’s adventure and true crime magazines, first-edition hardcovers, series books, dime novels, original art, Big Little Books, B-movies, serials and related paper collectibles, old-time-radio shows, and Golden and Silver Age as well as pulp-related comic books and games at PulpFest.

The PulpFest programming room banner, designed by the convention’s advertising director William Lampkin — who also edits THE PULPSTER — features the artwork of Rafael DeSoto. His painting originally served as the front cover for the January 1934 issue of THE PHANTOM DETECTIVE, published by Standard Magazines. DeSoto created several striking skeleton covers during his career.

The PulpFest 2020 post card — designed by advertising director Bill Lampkin — features the work of artist Margaret Brundage. Her painting was originally used as the cover for the October 1933 issue of WEIRD TALES. Brundage’s work — one of the most iconic images ever created for “The Unique Magazine” — illustrates the first segment of Edmond Hamilton’s four-part serial, “The Vampire Master.”

Last year’s issue of THE PULPSTER looks at how pulp characters and their creators influenced genre fiction, television, movies, and other forms of popular culture that followed. The cover art for THE PULPSTER #28 was originally painted by Rudolph Belarski  for the September 1939 BLACK BOOK DETECTIVE, published by Ned Pines’ Standard Magazines. It’s a depiction of The Black Bat, a character who bears similarities to Batman. Write to Mike Chomko at mike@pulpfest.com to learn how you can order a copy of the issue.

That’s Uma Thurman on the poster for Quentin Tarantino’s award-winning film PULP FICTION. Although fans of the movie are more than welcome to attend PulpFest, the focus of the convention is pulp magazines and related material including digests magazines, vintage and genre paperbacks, men’s adventure and true crime magazines, comic books, and other collectibles.)