Fishing for Pulps

Feb 25, 2014 by

its-got-to-be-old-wally by HowittHere in the Northeast, the only fishing that we’ve been doing for the last few months has been through a hole cut in the ice. Thankfully, there’s a thaw in our future and soon we’ll be digging out our tackle boxes and our rods and heading for the “old fishing hole,” hoping to catch us a big ‘un.  But that’s not the only place to catch fish. You’ll find some of our favorite spots below.

Check out the fishing at the 35th annual Los Angeles Vintage Paperback Show. This one-day show on Sunday, March 6th, will feature appearances by over forty-five writers and illustrators including James Blaylock, Christa Faust, Gary Gianni, Tim Kirk, Richard Lupoff, Larry Niven, Tim Powers, and many others. It will be held in the Glendale Civic Auditorium in Glendale, California.

Unfortunately, the creek ran dry for the South’s leading pulp convention, Pulp Ark. This Arkansas-based event was noted for gathering together writers, artists, and fans of “new pulp” fiction. As such, it was home to the movement’s annual award ceremony. But all is not lost, thanks to MidSouthCon. Based in Memphis, Tennessee for over two decades, the convention will be handing out the New Pulp Awards on Sunday, March 23rd.

Grab your flashlight, catch some nightcrawlers, and head for Chicago’s Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention. Now in its 14th year, the Windy will be celebrating the 85th anniversary of Dashiell Hammett’s Sam Spade, one of the best-known detective characters to emerge from the pulps. Noted for its excellent auctions and pulp art exhibition, this Second City convention will be held at the Westin Lombard Yorktown Center from April 25th – 27th.

Fantastic PulpsLatch on to your oars and start rowing for Canada’s 18th annual Fantastic Pulps Show & Sale at the Lillian H. Smith branch of the Toronto Public Library in Ontario. A small show featuring twenty-five dealers’ tables crammed with vintage pulps and paperbacks, pulp reprints, posters, and more, it is set for Saturday, May 10th. You can learn more about this entertaining event by visiting the Girasol Collectables website.

If you’d rather fish than cut bait, then Cinevent 46, scheduled for May 22nd -25th, is for you. In addition to 170 tables of movie-related collectibles such as posters, lobby cards, presskits, DVDs, and 16 mm films, Cinevent features an extensive schedule of classic sound and silent films and one of the country’s largest live auctions of vintage posters. It will be held at the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Conference Center in Columbus, Ohio.

Cast your line at Adventure Fest, the latest edition of the Edgar Rice Burroughs Chain of Friendship Convention. It will be held June 19th – 21st at the Doublewood Inn in Fargo, New Dakota and feature guest appearances by several of the creators of the Burroughs comic strips published by ERB, Inc.

Reel ’em in later this spring at Classicon 45, one of the oldest pulp and paperback shows. Featuring 35 tables and thousands of collectible pulp magazines, paperbacks, vintage comic books, original artwork, and more, it is held twice a year in Lansing, Michigan. For further information, write to the Curious Book Shop at 304 East Grand River Avenue, East Lansing, Michigan 48823 or by email at

See how the fish are biting on June 13th and 14th in Cross Plains, Texas at Robert E. Howard Days. This annual gathering of Two-Gun Bob’s fans is presented by Project Pride of Cross Plains and sponsored by the Robert E. Howard Foundation, with help from the members of the Robert E. Howard United Press Association. Patrice Louinet, one of the premier scholars in Howard studies, will be guest of honor.

What, you still haven’t caught your limit? Less than a week before summer’s great pulp con, the 2014 Burroughs Dum-Dum will be held at the LaSalle Hotel in Bryan, Texas from July 31st to August 2nd. Guests will be announced at a later date. For additional details, please write to Brad Vinson at

FlyerDon’t let the big one get away! Bring it in, hook, line, and sinker, by attending the destination for fans and collectors of vintage popular fiction and related materials, PulpFest 2014. Join us from August 7th – 10th at the Hyatt Regency Columbus for summer’s great pulp con, celebrating science fiction’s golden year of 1939 and 75 years of fantastic fiction, as well as the shudder pulps of 1934!

At the same time he was churning out covers for Popular Publications’ Horror Stories, Operator #5, The Spider, Terror Tales, and other pulps, John Newton Howitt, the subject of David Saunders‘ 2014 presentation, was also contributing cover paintings to slick magazines such as The Country Gentleman, Liberty, and The Saturday Evening Post. He also created covers  for outdoor sporting magazines such as the  painting that leads off our post, entitled “It’s Got to Be Old Wally,” used on the July 1937 issue of National Sportsman.

Robert Harris painted the cover for the October 1937 issue of Doc Savage Magazine, illustrating Lester Dent’s “Repel,” while Graves Gladney contributed the artwork for the July 1939 issue of Astounding Science Fiction, illustrating A. E. Van Vogt’s “Black Destroyer.”