The Cimmerian V3n6 — June 2006


Edited by Leo Grin | Illustrated by Dalmatius
40 pages

This issue was printed in two editions. The deluxe edition, numbered 1–75, uses a black linen cover with foil-stamped gold text. The limited edition, numbered 76–225, uses a gold cover with solid black text.



COLLECTOR’S NOTE: There is a strange story attached to the production of this issue that collectors will find of interest. Back in May-June 2006 I found myself incredibly overworked, striving to get the June issue ready in time for Howard Days along with a host of other centennial-year duties. This resulted in a (horrifying at the time, but now humorous) screw-up on my part with V3n6. It was only when I was in the Cross Plains gift shop, unpacking the fifty or so Limited issues of V3n6 I had brought for the occasion, that I realized my colossal error: without thinking, in a zombie-like daze of exhaustion, I had somehow managed to make all fifty of those Limited V3n6 issues with emeraude (green) covers instead of the proper gold! Apparently I had the old V2 cover stock still laying around, and had spent hours marrying them to V5n6 Limited issues without once realizing what I was doing. What can I say — I’ve never been so tired before or since.

I ended up asking the ladies of Project Pride to toss these improperly made issues in the trash, and not to show or tell any of the attendees about them, lest any of that gaggle of crazed Howard-Heads decided to dumpster-dive and fish them out of the garbage. As far as I know, the ladies did exactly that, and all of those errant copies were destroyed. But — who knows? — perhaps a few copies of this long-lost green-covered edition of V3n6 were saved on the sly, and are now tucked away in someone’s collection. All I know is that I didn’t keep any, I considered them destroyed and made up a whole new batch from scratch with gold covers.

Features an in-depth look at the very first Robert E. Howard Days in 1986, complete with lots of pictures, along with a series of excerpts from the highly anticipated Howard biography by [redacted], a tantalizing tidbit from Don Herron’s interview with Howard friend and contemporary Norris Chambers, rousing battle poetry from Darrell Schweitzer, a huge Lion’s Den, and more.


While we were getting settled in, the door opened again, and a quiet, unassuming man in his fifties walked in. This was none other than Glenn Lord, the High Priest of Howardia! Knowing that Glenn was the number one Howard fan in the world and was here in our presence was overwhelming for this Howard fan. Wow! Plus he was and is an incredibly nice man to boot. Glenn’s presence made us a band of ten, and so it was that the very first Howard Days was attended by ten fans.

— from “How Robert E. Howard Saved My Life” by Bill “Indy” Cavalier

Following an intense period of nearly two uninterrupted years of steady writing, Robert took a vacation to recharge his batteries in early 1932. Like the rest of his family, he had a roving spirit and wandered all over the state by any means at his disposal. In this case, Robert took the bus to San Antonio to kick around for a few days.
[. . .]
It was in Mission, Texas, that Robert said his fictional character first came to life. “Conan simply grew up in my mind a few years ago when I was stopping in a little border town on the lower Rio Grande,” Robert wrote to Clark Ashton Smith in 1935. “I did not create him by any conscious process. He simply stalked full grown out of oblivion and set me at work recording the saga of his adventures.” With those few colorful sentences, Robert was indulging in a little personal myth-making. It is unfortunate that the few statements Robert chose to make about Conan were of this type, as they have all been butchered by the haphazard paraphrasing of movie moguls, fellow authors, and uncomprehending critics. In truth, Conan took a full nine months to be born, and it’s a miracle that he survived the labor.

— from “A Look at Blood and Thunder”by [redacted]

“If he wasn’t out running around, he was home. Robert was always in there typing, but he would come in when we were there and visit with us. He had a pretty big library, oh. . . I guess as big as that cabinet, maybe bigger, full of books. . . .”

— from “COnun and TarZAN” by Don Herron

Whet our swords for ravens’ feasting!
Open wide the doors of Hell!
‘Tis the dawn of ravens’ feasting,
time of doom and omens fell!

— from “A Barbaric Song” by Darrell Schweitzer

I’m grateful to Darrell Schweitzer for sharing the anecdote about de Camp and Karl Edward Wagner in the V3n3 Den: “Sprague did mention once in my presence that he was not fond of Wagner’s Conan novel since all Wagner seemed to be able to depict was hatred and violence.” Talk about inadvertent testimonials — it was precisely Wagner’s preoccupation with hatred and violence that made him supremely qualified to work with Howard characters. And deep down a guilty conscience may have been at work in that lack of fondness for The Road of Kings — KEW had planned to tell the story of Conan’s usurpation of the Aquilonian throne in a novel to be titled The Day of the Lion, (note the congruence with The Hour of the Dragon), but Lion died in order that Conan the Liberator might live — if the meek and mewling Liberator can be said to live. Recall that in de Camp’s version, the usurper’s first impulse is to spare Numedides — “I do not hunt mice” — and sequester him in a madhouse! Wagner would have handled the end of the Numedidean reign quite differently. . . .

— Steve Tompkins, writing in The Lion’s Den