Conversations with the Weird Tales Circle Coming Our Way

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Just posted on Bill Thom’s Coming Attractions

Centipede Press: Conversations with the Weird Tales Circle
Now available to order with the majority being released in late November
and early December.

Conversations with the Weird Tales Circle is a massive, oversized celebration of the lives of H.P. Lovecraft, Clark Ashton Smith, Robert E. Howard, Frank Belknap Long, Seabury Quinn, E. Hoffmann Price, Henry Kuttner, C.L. Moore, Lee Brown Coye, Hannes Bok, August Derleth, Edmond Hamilton, Manly Wade Wellman, Fritz Leiber, Ray Bradbury, Robert Bloch, Donald Wandrei, Mary Elizabeth Counselman, and many others. Each writer has their own section in the book, complete with a custom drawing of the author by noted artist Alex McVey.

The sections contain letters and essays by the writers, with many interviews and memoirs about the writers, often by other writers from the Circle. With dozens of color and black & white photographs, and many of the articles never before reprinted (several coming from 1930s and 1940s fanzines that are now very difficult to find), this is an important and illuminating look at a group of people that defined an era. There is also a lengthy article on Weird Tales cover art with full-color reprints on nearly fifty Weird Tales covers, many of them printed at full page size. Essential for every fantasy and horror fan.

The book is a large sewn hardcover measuring 7 × 12 inches, over two inches thick, with 754 pages, with an image by Stephen Hickman printed on the front cover cloth, and black cloth on the spines and back. The book is rounded, with head and tail bands, and a ribbon marker, with black endsheets.

Note: Howard scholar [redacted] contributed a lot to the REH section of the book.

Cloth, $225

Centipede Press

As Bill notes, former TC blogger, [redacted], contributes to this volume. Mark has said that his portion of the book runs about six thousand words. Bringing on-board such an erudite scholar of Howard’s life bodes well.

Other glad tidings are not hard to find. John Pelan, an up-and-coming author/editor/anthologist in the Field of the Weird, is helming the project. Taking a look at his “Horror Core List” demonstrates that Pelan has extensive knowledge and discerning taste when it comes to pulp-era horror. The fact that he is including many neglected authors such as Moore, Wellman and Wandrei (and many others even more obscure) would indicate that Pelan is striving for a truly comprehensive look at the authors who made Weird Tales a legend during its heyday. Something like that, on this scale, has never really been attempted before. The icing on the cake is the cover by Hickman, who is himself an outspoken fan of the Weird Tales Circle, besides being an award-winning artist.

All in all, I’m getting a good feeling about this project. While the price-tag for the book will put it out of reach of many, Centipede Press seems to be swinging for the bleachers with this one. Hopefully, we’ll see a paperback (or at least a less high-end hardcover) down the road.