The World of the Lancer Conan Paperbacks


Guest blogger Morgan Holmes offers his own take on the pros and cons of the Lancer series….

MORGAN HOLMES: Leo’s post contrasting the Lancer and Del Rey editions was the latest in an ongoing debate of what is or was the best Robert E. Howard edition. I had been thinking for some time why the Lancer paperbacks had such an impact that later book editions never were able to duplicate.

There were advantages that Conan the Adventurer had in 1966. First was suppression of Sword-and-Sorcery fiction. It was something new to most people in 1966. Sword-and-Sorcery fiction was rare for fifteen years. In the early 1950s, you could still find Robert E. Howard influencing stories in pulps such as Poul Anderson’s “The Virgin of Valkarion” in Planet Stories. The pulps were meant to be cheap entertainment. In the early 1950s a copy of Planet Stories cost $.25, thus within the reach of a young reader. The last pulp science fiction magazines also died in 1955 when the distribution system collapsed. Science fiction was also king in the 1950s, driving fantasy and horror figuratively underground.

The Gnome Press editions of Robert E. Howard started in 1950, but Gnome was a small press. Most of its business was direct mail order or from specialty mail order book dealers. Plus the Gnome Press hardbacks were $3.00-$4.00. In today’s dollars, $3.00 would be $22.65. These books were aimed at older fans wanting the stories in book form. The small print runs would prevent creating many new ones. A teenager would have to save up in order to get a Gnome Press book in the 1950s, provided he knew of them or ever heard of Robert E. Howard.

The baby boom started in 1946 and ended in 1964. That means you had a growing population in their teens — the prime group for buying fantasy fiction. The mass-market paperback had stepped in as the replacement for the pulps as a source of inexpensive fantastic fiction. There was a massive rebirth of Edgar Rice Burroughs in paperback in 1963 when it was discovered copyright was not in effect for those stories. Ace Books published wonderfully packaged books with covers by Roy Krenkel and Frank Frazetta.

Just months before the release of the Lancer Conan was another important event that helped prime the pump. Ace Books discovered a copyright loophole and published The Lord of the Rings with Jack Gaughan covers. Ballantine Books published the authorized editions in 1966 with the psychedelic flamingo covers. Burroughs and Tolkien were major factors in preparing the scene for Howard. Plus you had two of the L. Sprague de Camp edited anthologies, Sword and Sorcery (1963) and The Spell of Seven (1965) that would have introduced some readers to Robert E. Howard for the first time. There were no trade paperback science fiction books, as trade paperbacks were mainly meant for the college market.

The Lancer paperbacks were for the most part sold in drugstores and some grocery stores. You did not have the bookstore chains like you do today. There were regional distributors who supplied paperbacks to the places that sold the books. A regional distributor knew that one place might sell more westerns and mysteries while another might move science fiction paperbacks. In some ways, the Lancer paperbacks may have been available in more places than the average paperback would today. Someone going to the drugstore to get the newest issue of Eerie or Creepy would have stumbled across the now iconic image of Conan as created by Frank Frazetta.

Then there is the question of cost. The first Lancer paperbacks were $.60, going to $.75 and then $.95 in 1968. Sixty cents in 1966 would convert to $3.81 today! That is incredible — science fiction and fantasy paperbacks are $7.99 today. That would convert to $1.25 in 1966. So the Lancer paperbacks were a great deal. More so, the minimum wage in 1966 was $1.25 an hour. That converts to $6.83 an hour today. Western writer and Robert E. Howard fan, James Reasoner, once told me that mass-market paperbacks should cost one hour at the minimum wage. Paperbacks are often an impulse item. The higher the cost, the more a potential buyer has to agonize if that book is worth it. In 1966-67, a teenager working a few hours a week could stop at the local drug store and pick up a Lancer paperback and still have money to pick up the latest 45 record like “Strawberry Fields Forever” or “Ruby Tuesday.”

There were some other factors — horror had made a comeback by the 60s after having a low profile in the 50s. Our theoretical teenage buyer could see the latest Hammer horror flick before picking up Conan the Adventurer. What impact did the Italian sword & sandal movies have, the ones starring Steve Reeves or Gordon Scott, and all those Hercules/Maciste/Samson/Goliath movies?

So, you have an intersection of demographics, cost, distribution, interest, and of course the Frazetta look that combined to create something that will probably never occur again. The nearest you could get today to recreating what the Lancer Conan paperbacks would be to have Leisure Books publish Robert E. Howard at $4.99 (price of their westerns) with distribution to truck stops and grocery stores. Plus you need an artist to create something totally new, and there is only one Frank Frazetta. Why are western paperbacks $4.99 but science fiction and fantasy paperbacks $7.99?

REH namechecked in The New York Times


Don Herron alerts me to a post Scott Sheaffer wrote on the REH Inner Circle e-mail list alerting Howard fans to Pulitzer Prize winner Michael Chabon’s new story appearing in installments for the Sunday New York Times magazine. The tale is titled “Gentlemen of the Road,” is influenced by various pulp authors, and is set in the Russian Dark Ages during a time of (I assume) swordplay and adventure. Best of all, in a Q&A with readers Chabon cites Robert E. Howard as an important influence:

I also, maybe more importantly, re-read some of my lifelong favorite writers of historical swashbuckling romance: Alexander Dumas, Rafael Sabatini, Robert E. Howard, Fritz Leiber, Michael Moorcock (to whom the story is dedicated), George MacDonald Fraser. The tone of the writing, the style, the approach to the idea of heroic swordsmen and their personalities (of which I favor the ironic variety found in the last three authors named and perhaps in Dumas, as well), all that was in many ways more of a challenge than the details of period, which are just a matter ultimately of reading and using the imagination. Though the Khazars and their world have a basis in general fact, I freely invented the situations and characters.

The first two chapters of the story are behind the usual draconian NYT firewall, but you can read the third chapter here (and the others if you have a password).

Another Ballot Suggestion

In a post a few days ago on the 2007 World Fantasy Awards, I gave readers some suggestions on getting Howard projects nominated again this year. In all the hubbub and excitement I forgot to mention one of the most obvious ones: [redacted]’s Blood & Thunder for “Special Award: Professional.” It would be nice to see that book win and provide Howard with a World Fantasy Award to bookend the Award given to Tom Shippey in 2001 for J.R.R. Tolkien: Author of the Century. Be sure to remember Mark when you’re filling out your ballots.

A Cimmerian erratum — Ten Words


Over the three years of The Cimmerian‘s existence, we’ve had our fair share of typos and errors of fact, and I’ve learned not to sweat them to [sic] much. Comes with the territory even when slaving for years on a book, much less hurriedly throwing together a journal every month. In the past I’ve stated that contributor Brian Leno was from Bismarck, Nebraska despite having his address on file and despite having studied US state capitals in grade school. There have been a handful of others — calling an old Arkham House book Dark Man, Dark Heart instead of the correct Dark Mind, Dark Heart, printing a Darrell Schweitzer letter where he presents a numbered list of arguments and uses the #6 twice, listing the wrong page number for an article on one issue’s Table of Contents. Things like that, each one of them slipping quietly past me and my eagle-eyed proofing team. Readers are good at correcting this kind of thing after the fact, and no real loss of information or comprehension has resulted.

But this morning I just received a call from Donald Sidney-Fryer, who said he had found a much worse problem in the printed version of his recent V3n12 essay, “Robert E. Howard: Epic Poet in Prose.” Specifically, there seems to be a whole missing line of text. I checked, and sure enough, there’s one line missing at the bottom of a column. Head on over to page 11 of V3n12 (December 2006) and you’ll see the following:

One of the most characteristic of the epic devices is the epic listing or catalogue, often featuring the names — typically highfalutin’ or exotic or both — of the different armies or tribes making up the fighting

[missing line]

the divertissement — the long and elaborate suite of dances in a full-length classical ballet….

As you can see, there is something missing between the bottom of the first column on page 11 and the top of the second. I went through the original files, and it appears that all of the various proofed versions my team checked have the correct wordage, but during the process to create a final booklet file with rearranged “imposed” pages for printing the line got dropped by the layout program I use, Adobe InDesign. It seems like one of those strange once-in-a-blue-moon quirks that happens when pages have to be reordered — each column gets locked down as-is instead of being allowed to flow into the next column, and on page 11 this time the program erroneously judged that the last line of the column didn’t fit in the space provided and so dropped it. Very strange, but one gets used to that when pushing computers to their limits. I made a slight tweak to the imposer file, and all future purchases of V3n12 will have the proper line reading intact.

For those of you with V3n12 already in-house, here is how the passage should read, with the added text enclosed in brackets:

One of the most characteristic of the epic devices is the epic listing or catalogue, often featuring the names — typically highfalutin’ or exotic or both — of the different armies or tribes making up the fighting [assemblage on either side of a pitched battle. As in] the divertissement — the long and elaborate suite of dances in a full-length classical ballet….

In the past Don Herron has patiently explained to this typing monkey the concept of “points” in collecting, how little errors such as this — called “points” — help collectors determine the various collectible states of a book. So consider those missing ten words a big-ass point, and hence your flawed copy of The Cimmerian ever-so-slightly more collectible. Or send your flawed copy back to me, and I’ll send you a corrected one free of charge. Your choice.

Points. Yet another way The Cimmerian is striving to give you more (of everything!) than the competition.

The Deathliest Hallow


Fans of Sword-and-Sorcery have cause to rejoice at the impending release of The Children of Húrin by J.R.R. Tolkien, an author I hold in unparalleled esteem for reasons largely beyond my ability to explain.

Tolkien was my first and my best, the man who set me atop a sorcerous, literary Lonely Mountain from which I have blissfully viewed the world ever since. He taught me that history was magical, and that myth was but truth under another name. To this day I marvel at the fell majesty and cadence inherent in even his most mundane passages, how every word chimes like notes from a perfectly tuned instrument. He was a master at enclosing whole worlds within outwardly innocuous words — in The Road to Middle Earth and J.R.R. Tolkien: Author of the Century, two of the most revelatory volumes written about Tolkien, philologist Tom Shippey demonstrates to devastating effect how precise the author was in choosing words with fascinating etymologies that point like bony fingers towards long forgotten historical deeps. As a fantasist’s fantasist, his legendarium contains seemingly endless layers of rich literary sediment and mythological substrata, with ages of fallen cities and relics and histories and theology waiting — sometimes for decades — to be unearthed by a perceptive reader. More than any other author I’ve read, his work defies attempts to subjugate it, to feel as if you have gathered its full measure and discovered all its secrets. The scope of the various tales he wrote of Arda and Middle Earth can only be compared to the near infinite and daunting immensity of real history — perhaps because so much of Tolkien’s work is tied not to fantasy but to reality, with deftly utilized words chosen for deep-seated philological reasons that resonate often unconsciously in our minds, each of them Wonderstrands as intricate as they are beautiful.

You see, I told you I couldn’t explain it. Suffice it to say that Tolkien reached literary heights that most fantasy authors haven’t even dreamed of, much less accomplished. Oftentimes the “high fantasy” genre that has sprung up at the feet of his achievement feels so desiccated precisely because he set the bar so unfathomably high. Knowing this, it is no small matter that The Children of Húrin is on its way to bookstores this April 17, for the tale housed within constitutes the Englishman’s most bloody, war-torn, and tragic story, one that virtually demands comparison to Howard’s gloomy dreamscapes in the sister realm of Sword-and-Sorcery.

Most of what we’ll read in The Children of Húrin has been published before, either in The Silmarillion or in sundry volumes of The History of Middle Earth. The difference here is that for the first time all of these disparate gems are now to be united into a towering, 320-page masterpiece that threatens to bring the pathos of the story home with a forcefulness not seen since The Lord of the Rings thundered onto the scene fifty years ago. The tale contains some of the very best things Tolkien ever wrote, passages that (to use an analogy oft employed by fellow blogger Steve Tompkins) perform open-heart surgery on the reader, scenes that I cherish above all others in literature. My gut tells me Howard would have valued them, too. Listen:

Then all the hosts of Angband swarmed against them, and they bridged the stream with their dead, and encircled the remnant of Hithlum as a gathering tide about a rock. There as the sun westered on the sixth day, and the shadow of Ered Wethrin grew dark, Huor fell pierced with a venomed arrow in his eye, and all the valiant Men of Hador were slain about him in a heap; and the Orcs hewed their heads and piled them as a mound of gold in the sunset.

Last of all Húrin stood alone. Then he cast aside his shield, and wielded an axe two-handed; and it is sung that the axe smoked in the black blood of the troll-guard of Gothmog until it withered, and each time that he slew Húrin cried: “Aure entuluva! Day shall come again!” Seventy times he uttered that cry; but they took him at last alive, by the command of Morgoth, for the Orcs grappled him with their hands, which clung to him still though he hewed off their arms; and ever their numbers were renewed, until at last he fell buried beneath them. Then Gothmog bound him and dragged him to Angband with mockery.

I’m hoping that this new release serves as an Athelas salve of sorts for me. The last few years have been bitter ones for this Tolkien fan, as the Peter Jackson movies methodically reforged the Englishman’s masterpiece into a often silly and irreverent roller-coaster ride for audiences addicted to a Six Flags level of momentum and excitement. The arguments I’ve heard in favor of Jackson’s vision — epic widescreen compositions worthy of Kurosawa or Leone, actors who bring a Shakespearian eloquence and grandeur to the proceedings — seem to be hopelessly offset by the reductio ad absurdum of Jackson’s painfully offensive ghettoizing of Tolkien’s meticulously constructed story. Trash-talking dialogue (“Let’s hunt some Orc, yo!”), hip-hop battle tactics (Legolas bustin’ moves on Oliphants and poppin’ caps into cave trolls and Uruk-hai) and hobbit fart jokes mix uneasily with Fabio-inspired romance to create a Frankenstein’s monster Rings that occasionally wows or moves but in the end fails utterly to convey the grand themes that were Tolkien’s life’s blood. Say what you will of John Milius’ Conan the Barbarian — even at his worst he directed the material with a refreshing seriousness, and his attempts at comedy and battle prowess grew organically out of a fundamentally grave story and characters. By the end (the sixth consecutive end, by my count) of Jackson’s Return of the King I felt insulted not only for Tolkien but on behalf of legions of dead lying forgotten under poppy-strewn fields and ancient Saxon ruins. One of the few assuagements to be had in a post-Jackson world dominated by Armani Aragorn and Aerosmith Arwen is knowing that Christopher Tolkien shares my dismay in spades, a hollow triumph to be sure, but one which helps reduce my feelings of loneliness whenever the Moviegoing Majority sings the praises of travesties like Jackson’s predacious Faramir or his puffed-up and self-important Théoden.

I’m also tired of the artistic talent dominating modern Tolkien publishing — Alan Lee doesn’t do it for me, never has. His desaturated and dreary vision too often transforms Middle Earth into a chilled morgue viewed through a pale shroud. For all of the perceived faults of the greeting card school of Tolkien illustration — Darrell K. Sweet, the Brothers Hildebrandt — at least their work overflows with color and vibrant emotion, both features of Tolkien’s prose that I delight in. In my mind’s eye Tolkien’s universe is awash in primary colors: orange torchlight and campfires, stunningly green woodlands, and skies the rich blue of lapis lazuli. Above all Lee fails the Elves, a race haunted by sadness and loss, yes, but who for all of that remain hopelessly devoted to a beauty the likes of which we might only see today in a particularly exceptional National Geographic photo essay. The pseudo-Celtic, Enya-esque conception of the elves as envisioned by Lee — ghostly hypnotic figures sleepwalking through monochromatic woods of perpetual torpor — make the Elves seem less like God’s Elder Children and more like phantoms from a 70s “be-in.”


Take a good look at the frowning, severe, and morose Lee-and-Jackson-designed Elves above, and then ponder Tolkien’s lighthearted exchange between these selfsame Elves and Bilbo Baggins in The Fellowship of the Ring, after Bilbo has recited a poem for their amusement in Rivendell:

The chanting ceased. Frodo opened his eyes and saw that Bilbo was seated on his stool in a circle of listeners, who were smiling and applauding.

“Now we had better have it again,” said an Elf.

Bilbo got up and bowed. “I am flattered, Lindir,” he said. “But it would be too tiring to repeat it all.”

“Not too tiring for you,” the Elves answered laughing. “You know you are never tired of reciting your own verses. But really we cannot answer your question at one hearing!”

“What!” cried Bilbo. “You can’t tell which parts were mine, and which were the Dúnadan’s?”

“It is not easy for us to tell the difference between two mortals,” said the Elf.

“Nonsense, Lindir,” snorted Bilbo. “If you can’t distinguish between a Man and a Hobbit, your judgement is poorer than I imagined. They’re as different as peas and apples.”

“Maybe. To sheep other sheep no doubt appear different,” laughed Lindir. “Or to shepherds. But Mortals have not been our study. We have other business.”

Imagine that: Elves laughing and joking and smiling and applauding! The above scene, along with so much else in Tolkien’s original epic, remains inconceivable in Jackson and Lee’s stylized, reductive renderings of Middle Earth. The cover to The Children of Húrin, revealed just this morning, is one of Lee’s less objectionable efforts, but I’m dreading the moment when I have to view the interior plates, and hope that there will eventually be an illustration-free hardcover edition. I yearn for something different: set Darrell K. Sweet’s often artificial fantasy work aside for a moment, and take a gander at his outstanding western paintings — that’s the full spectrum and sweeping majesty that Middle Earth demands. Or consider another artist likely to elicit groans from the Frazetta-lovers of Howardom: Thomas Kinkade. The self-proclaimed “Painter of Light” has seldom demonstrated a facility for painting characters or portraits, but his unsurpassed ability to tinge outwardly mundane landscapes with innate magic and immortal beauty is perhaps the closest any artist has come to hinting at what Tolkien’s Rivendell, Lórien, Vales of Anduin, or Grey Havens should look like. Such artists, their abilities properly channeled, would provide a welcome antidote to Middle Earth’s decades-long, Lee-conjured cloud cover.

I love how declares that Húrin is “the first complete book by J.R.R. Tolkien in three decades,” as if the redoubtable professor were still alive and hunched at his desk, methodically teasing and conjuring new stories from his invented world. Of course that’s not far from the truth, because Tolkien’s work yet seethes with passion and sorrow and tears unnumbered, attracting readers both new and old to black axes and white flames, to starlit hopes and mires of blood, to armies “ten thousand strong, with bright mail and long swords and spears like a forest.” His tales ever remind us of both our need for heroes and our penchant for hubris — of the power of evil, and the redemption of sacrifice:

By the command of Morgoth the Orcs with great labour gathered all the bodies of those who had fallen in the great battle, and all their harness and weapons, and piled them in a great mound in the midst of Anfauglith; and it was like a hill that could be seen from afar. Haudh-en-Ndengin the Elves named it, the Hill of Slain, and Haudh-en-Nirnaeth, the Hill of Tears. But grass came there and grew again long and green upon that hill, alone in all the desert that Morgoth made; and no creature of Morgoth trod thereafter upon the earth beneath which the swords of the Eldar and the Edain crumbled into rust.

April 17 can’t come soon enough.

Don Santiago de Valdez, Call Your Agent…


This Sunday night Masterpiece Theatre becomes Monsterpiece Theatre to present a new BBC version of Dracula starring Marc Warren, David Suchet, Sophia Myles, and Stephanie Leonidas. This latest re-imagining is a skimpy 90 minutes long and jettisons Renfield, plus the reviews, while mostly favorable, indicate that the concerns of Stewart Harcourt’s screenplay are as much venereal as arterial. Still, I will be tuning in, in part because of memories of what a big deal the 1973 made-for-television Dan Curtis/Richard Matheson/Jack Palance version was when I was in junior high school, and in part because this blog’s reason for being might have plunked himself down in front of the TV, if we can extrapolate from The Robert E. Howard Bookshelf, which notes the following in a letter to Tevis Clyde Smith on October 5, 1923:

I’ve had two cousins visiting me, whom I hadn’t seen for fifteen years. They’d read the International Adventure Library and from what they said, ‘Dracula’ is a humdinger.’ I’m going to order the set right away.

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2007 WFC ballots out

It’s time for all those who attended the World Fantasy Convention last year in Austin to once again cast your votes for the World Fantasy Awards. As you may know, anyone who popped for a membership last year gets to also vote for the next two years, even if they don’t buy any further memberships. So all of you guys who purchased Associate Memberships last year just to vote can do so again. I received my ballot in the mail today, so most of you likely have as well. If not, you can e-mail your vote to Rodger Turner, and he will verify your name against the registration lists for the last two cons.

Although we Howardists were shut out of the winner’s circle last year, hope springs eternal. So if you feel TC did a decent job in 2006, do me a favor and cast your vote in the SPECIAL ACHIEVEMENT: NON-PROFESSIONAL category for “Leo Grin, The Cimmerian.” It would be nice to show up once again at the gates to the Ivory Tower and raise a barbaric ruckus.

And as you are filling out your ballots, don’t forget to renominate Glenn Lord for Lifetime Achievement. Everyone is pretty much in agreement that slighting Glenn in the year that REH was the theme of the convention was the one unforgivable action of last year’s judges’ panel. So let’s get his name back on their radar, too.

I don’t really have strong opinions about the other categories, but for Best Novel you could do worse than to nominate Troy: Lord of the Silver Bow by the late David Gemmell. He probably won’t win as the prejudice against Gemmell and similar fantasy authors seemed pretty strong among the WFC faithful (whether they’ve actually read a single word he’s written is another story), but it would be nice to see him nominated at least. That would be yet another shot across the bow of those who would deny the continued existence and relevance of Sword-and-Sorcery in the fantasy field. It’s not just a bunch of insipid Tolkien clones — there is good work being done.

And hey, for Best Artist why not nominate “Dalmazio Frau, a.k.a. Dalmatius” who drew over thirty pieces of Howardian art last year to make The Cimmerian‘s third volume a special one? I don’t think illustrating so many different Howard stories in a single year has ever been done before. Fantasy, horror, boxing, westers — he did it all.

The Cat, the Skull, and the Editor


I’m staring moodily into my alehorn, like one of the Icelandic sagas’ barely socialized wolf’s-heads who can’t be trusted to behave in the skalli, pondering how best to retort on behalf of the disloyal opposition to Leo and Gary’s “If Loving the Lancers Is Wrong, We Don’t Want To Be Right” post. But before getting into that, I want to revisit a conflict of such escalatory excess that the groundskeepers of TC‘s Lion’s Den are still turning up unexploded munitions and unidentified body parts: The Farnsworth Wright War of 2005-2006.

Was Wright not just a good, but a great, editor? Or did he play Cardinal Richelieu in the story of Weird Tales’ Three Musketeers? With his tendency to reject in haste and repent at leisure, was he perhaps born with a unique chromosome, a “C” chromosome to go with his X and Y, that made him more capricious than should have been humanly possible? These questions and more were fought out in the Den, with Don Herron in particular storming the satrap Pharnabazus’ mausoleum to place satchel charge after satchel charge against Farny’s sarcophagus. A passage in Patrice’s Kull: Exile of Atlantis essay “Atlantean Genesis” got me thinking about the whole contretemps:

Howard, in a particularly unprofessional move, didn’t even rewrite his story, making all his changes on his first draft, and retitled the tale The Cat and the Skull, whose “Skull” is an explicit reference to Thulsa Doom. . .The story is rather poor and suffers from a lack of cohesiveness, which is not surprising given the late addition of Thulsa Doom. . .Not surprisingly, the story was rejected by Weird Tales, apparently to Howard’s surprise, if this is indeed the unnamed story he is alluding to in Post Oaks and Sand Roughs (p. 133). Undaunted, Howard wrote yet another tale featuring Kull, the second and last featuring Kuthulos, The Screaming Skull of Silence. The story was quickly submitted to Weird Tales and likewise rejected.

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Remembering David Gemmell


Cimmerian readers have been well aware of the passing of fantasist David Gemmell (1948-2006). In V3n10 I published an article by Cimmerian blogger Steve Tompkins called “Dog-Brothers,” that went a long way toward demonstrating how simpatico the author of Legend and thirty other fantasy bestsellers was with the work of Robert E. Howard.

Now Steve has contributed to another, longer tribute to Gemmell, this one available online. Head on over to the Black Gate website and read “David Gemmell: An Appreciation” by Tompkins and Wayne McLaurin. Black Gate is currently edited by Howard Jones, a noted Harold Lamb scholar and a good friend of REH as well. Those of you who read the World Fantasy Convention coverage in V3n11 heard all about Jones sticking up for Two-Gun on a WFC panel. Nice to see him also doing his part to honor David Gemmell at Black Gate.

Windy City Pulp Show needs REH articles


Rusty Burke, who ferrets out all kinds of things the rest of us don’t know about, sez:

Doug Ellis and the folks at Windy City Pulp and Paper Convention (Chicago, May 4-6) need material for the program book that is REH and Weird Tales oriented. Payment is in contributor copies, but Doug says he’d be happy to throw in a complimentary membership as well. I’ll have to ask him about the deadline, I’d guess no later than mid-April given the dates. You can contact Doug directly for more info, if needed, or e-mail submissions here.

The theme of this year’s convention is REH/Weird Tales/Conan. Guest’s of Honor are Gary Gianni and Ken Kelly.

Man, between this show, PulpCon in Dayton, OH on July 5-8 2007 (where Glenn Lord will be Guest of Honor), and Gen Con in Indianapolis on August 16-19 2007 (where they are going to start having an “REH Day”), Howard is going to be all over the place again this year. There’s now officially another Trifecta of events to try to make, and that’s not including Howard Days in Cross Plains on June 8-9 2007.