Paul Herman (editor of many Howard books for Wildside Press) has announced that his massive new bibliography on Robert E. Howard will be available shortly. It’s called The Neverending Hunt, and it’s jam-packed with lots of never-before-published information. Paul is the two-time Cimmerian Award winner for Best REH Website, by virtue of HowardWorks — but this book will have much in it that even that colossal site lacks.
For instance, have you ever heard of “Over the Rockies in a Ford?” Of course you haven’t. That’s because it’s a complete, unpublished Howard story that has never seen print anywhere before. If you are a collector of first editions of Howard’s work, you’ll need to order this book.
Have you ever wanted to know exactly how many poems of Howard’s have been found over the years? How about his letters? — just exactly how much exists out there, unpublished and unknown, for you to pine for? Well, wonder no longer — Paul has included not only a Prose Index, but also a Verse Index and a Letters Index, and I guarantee you’ll be astounded at how much Howard stuff remains unpublished and uncollected. We are talking hundreds and hundreds of items for you to add to your collecting lists.
And then there are all the publications that have appeared since Glenn Lord’s standard bio-bibliography appeared as The Last Celt in 1976 (and TLC‘s biblio was only updated up to 1973). Books in English, periodicals, anthologies, chapbooks and products in other unusual formats, plus samplings of books in non-English languages and comics. And just for fun, there are several “best of” lists included to give you an idea of what stories, etc. have garnered the best reputation over the years — perhaps there will be some there you haven’t read and will want to seek out. All of it has been assembled by Paul and pored over by the best Howard scholars and collectors in the business. The result is a 630 page labor of love that no Howard fan can afford to be without.
Collectors take note and beware: whereas a Wildside edition will be coming out early next year, it still isn’t decided yet in what format it will appear, hardcover or trade paper. But regardless of that, Paul is releasing a first edition of the book in a few weeks under his Hermanthis imprint. This edition will be limited to 100 signed and numbered copies (many of which are already spoken for), and it will be a superior grade hardcover. High quality binding, good paper — Paul took the time to look for a printer he really liked. So again, if first edition appearances of Howard stories is your game, you need to act on this now and pre-order.
So how do you do that? Pop Paul an e-mail and give him your info. He’s charging $50 per copy, and as I said, this is a high-grade hardcover, 630+ pages, everything in a small 10pt. font and no illustrations or other padding. Just an enormous volume of the factual information Howard collectors and scholars need to keep on top of the tsunami of REH publishing that has gone on for the last three decades, and that continues through this centennial year. The book is updated through July 2006, so you’re getting the absolute latest information.
Paul says he’s all finished with the proofs, and that the first printing of the book should be available in early October. Attendees of the World Fantasy Convention can expect to see copies there only if he doesn’t sell out in the interim, so if you want one of these superior hardcovers, best pre-order now before it’s too late.
This book is a significant event for the centennial. It’s the result, literally, of twenty-five years of research on Paul’s part, and he’s consulted with people as varied as Patrice Louinet, David Gentzel, Dennis McHaney, and others too numerous to mention. And of course Glenn Lord, the Dean of Howard fandom. All of these guys are noted collectors and scholars in their own right, and with The Neverending Hunt you get the sum total of their bibliographic knowledge at your fingertips. That’s huge, and it’s another way in which this centennial year has exceeded all expectations.
ROB ADDS: This is one of the things that I’ve been waiting for: a complete listing of letters and poems. Plus all the things that have come out since 1973. And I finally get to make a mark on the “Unpublished” list. “Over the Rockies in a Ford” is one of the Bill Smalley stories that Howard wrote early on. The very first story he ever submitted, to Adventure, was “Bill Smalley and the Power of the Human Eye,” which was rejected and is only available in an old issue of The Dark Man.