Cleve Cartmill: The Devil’s In The Details

Orban for "Bit of Tapestry"

In this week’s podcast I begin by talking about pulp fantasy and how it differs from contemporary sci-fi/fantasy. After that, I review three pulp fantasy stories by Cleve Cartmill from the 1940’s: “Bit of Tapestry,” “Wheesht!” and “Hell Hath Fury”—all of which appeared in the pulp magazine, UNKNOWN. Cartmill was publishing science fiction and fantasy during the 1940’s and ’50’s mainly. Today, he seems to be something of a lost writer, which seems a pity as his stories were quite compelling. Looking at his bibliography I can see that he…

Podcast #21: Doctor Fogg

Dr Fogg meme

in this week’s ROCKETEER podcast I’m reviewing, “Doctor Fogg” by Norman Matson. It’s an interesting example of very early science fiction. It’s also considered a satire. But is it? I doubt you’ll read too many reviews of this book as it’s pretty rare. So join me over on Substack to hear about an interesting piece of science fiction history from 1929.

Podcast #16: Superman and the Library of Congress

Superman meme

This week’s Rocketeer podcast is about two things that don’t really go together and I’m going to treat it as two distinct parts. Part One is what I’d planned to talk about last week, the original origin of Superman. Part Two is about Jazz Age romance novels, something I’m researching at the moment. You can listen to it here. As an addendum I’d like to add an odd little post script. One of the romance novelists I mentioned in my podcast–“Vivian Grey”–was also the pseudonym of 19th century British statesman…

Pete Beard’s Video Channel

Pete Beard video header

In this week’s ROCKETEER I’m talking about a great find on YouTube–Pete Beard’s Video Channel. If you’re a fan of good illustration, you’ll love this channel. It’s full of well researched videos about illustrators from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, including the pulp era! You can read (and listen to) it here.

Podcast #14: Devolution

Devolution meme

In this week’s podcast I’m talking about the idea that humans were once greater or perhaps stranger beings than we are today and have since devolved. I present three pulp-era stories on this topic: Devolution by Edmond Hamilton first appeared in Amazing Stories, in the December, 1936 issue. False Dawn by Henry Kuttner first appeared in Thrilling Wonder Stories in the June 1942 issue. The Code by Catherine Lucille Moore (as by Lawrence O’Donnell) first appeared in Astounding Science Fiction in the July 1945 issue. Join me for the podcast…

A new painting and this week’s Rocketeer

Hollywood Glamour meme

I’ve been working on my oil pastels again, continuing my study of Hollywood glamour portraits from the 1920’s and 1930’s. These are the sorts of illustrations you’d see on the covers of the A-list fan magazines such as Photoplay. In this week’s ROCKETEER I’m showing off my newest pastel painting and talking about why Hollywood glamour portraits can make a useful study. Read it here.