PulpFest Historical — Harry Bates, Pittsburgh’s Own

I have a new article out today on the PulpFest website. When I was asked to write about Harry Bates,  I didn’t know much about him, only that he was an early editor of ASTOUNDING STORIES. I certainly didn’t know he’d written the story on which “The Day the Earth Stood Still” was based. Certainly, this was a big contribution the history of science fiction. But, to me, the bigger contribution was his being the very first editor of ASTOUNDING. Along with publisher William Clayton, Bates started a legacy that…

New article in print!

The Pulpster #29 cover

I have an article in THE PULPSTER #29, out this week! THE PULPSTER is the annual magazine for PulpFest and, although the 2020 convention was canceled, the committee decided to publish the magazine anyway. It’s not a regular edition, oh no! While not as thick as a Ziff-Davis AMAZING STORIES QUARTERLY, THE PULPSTER #29 is almost twice as large as the 2019 edition. Weighing in at 84 pages, plus covers, it’s more like a “PULPSTER ANNUAL.” The issue celebrates the dual centennials of Ray Bradbury’s birth and the debut of BLACK…

PulpFest Profiles: David & Daniel Ritter & First Fandom Experience

FFE pubs

If you follow me at all, you know about my fascination with early science fiction. Perhaps I was born into the wrong era or maybe it’s something in my astrological chart. Who knows? Either way, I find the early stories very compelling (well, not all of them, of course, but many) and feel that some of their themes can be successfully used to reinvigorate the contemporary trend of dystopian science fiction. When I first met David and Daniel Ritter at PulpFest 2019, I was surprised and delighted. Their First Fandom…

“The Jovian Jest” by Lilith Lorraine

The Jovian Jest_Lorraine

Last night, I stumbled upon a podcast highlighting readings of pulp science fiction stories by female authors. Curious, I listened to the first one and was horrified by the poor quality of the reading. I knew the story and although it isn’t my favorite of the author’s works, it certainly deserved better treatment than that. I thought I could perhaps do a bit better and took out my microphone. I made a few stumbles along the way but I think my reading is really okay. This morning I added an…

Pulpfest Profile: Bradbury in Oz

Laurent Durieux_THE WONDERFUL WIZARD OF OZ

I love fairy tales, the stories, illustrations, the works! They form the basis for many cultural stereotypes and were used as both teaching tales for children and as a way to critique society without risk of censure. L. Frank Baum can be considered the first truly American fabulist. His Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1900) gave American boys and girls the chance to imagine fairy tales taking place in their own country. It was ground-breaking at the time and firmly stamped the land of Oz into the fabric of our society.…

PulpFest Profile — Visions of Mars: The Pulp Years

Thrilling Wonder Stories cover June 1949

August 22, 2020 is Ray Bradbury’s 100th birthday. PulpFest is celebrating Bradbury as part of their 2020 theme of “Bradbury, BLACK MASK, and Brundage.” The August 6-9 convention is still planned for its physical location in Pittsburgh, PA. I will be giving a presentation at PulpFest 2020 about how pulp authors like Bradbury envisioned the red planet. I briefly outline this material in my new article,  Visions of Mars: The Pulp Years which is live on the PulpFest site today. Here’s a clip: THE MARTIAN CHRONICLES The first story to…