I’m currently reading The Golden Vulture, a Shadow novel originally written by Lester Dent and later modified by Walter Gibson. The notion of a Dent/Gibson collaboration is enticing, isn’t it? Couple that with news that Josh Reynolds and Derrick Ferguson have co-written something called The Vril Agenda and you have the wheels turning in my head. I’ve never done much in the way of co-writing, mainly because I’m A) Too much of a control freak and B) I tend to write a lot faster than my collaborators. But it is a notion that’s crossed my mind a few times.
It led me to think about switching up characters, too — inspired by having Doc Savage’s primary author borrowing Walter Gibson’s Shadow. So I figured it would be fun to take some New Pulp authors and “assign” them to other people’s characters. So here’s what I came up with:
1. Chuck Miller’s The Black Centipede by Derrick Ferguson. Derrick writes great action stories but the Centipede would be something different for him, focusing as it does on Lovecraftian horror and real-world mysteries. I think it would make for an interesting read.
2. Tommy Hancock’s YesterYear by Jim Beard. Jim has quickly made a New Pulp name for himself and I think he’d have the perfect sensibilities to write stories in Tommy’s superhero universe.
3. Ron Fortier’s Captain Hazzard by Lee Houston, Jr. This Doc Savage pastiche is a fun character who straddles the line between pulp and comic sensibilities — and Lee has shown with both Hugh Monn and Project Alpha that he’s capable of mixing both of those into a frothy mix.
4. Joel Jenkins’ Dire Planet by P.J. Lozito. The Dire Planet series is a John Carter-style planetary romance… while PJ Lozitio’s pulp debut was the smash hit Sting of the Silver Manticore, which mixed elements of The Shadow with a few other pulp heroes. I’m really curious to see how P.J.” s style would translate into what’s almost another genre entirely.
5. Derrick Ferguson’s Dillon by Nancy Hansen. Nancy is probably the # 1 pulp fantasy author right now — so seeing her handle a he-man pulp hero like Dillon would be a hoot.
6. Lee Houston’s Hugh Monn by Andrew Salmon. Andrew is a writer of varied genres but he’s done quite a few Sherlock Holmes’ tales. I’d like to see him take a crack at a hardboiled alien P.I. like Hugh Monn and see if his ability to craft solid mysteries would function in a wildly different setting.
7. Jim Beard’s Sgt. Janus by Percival Constantine. Again, this would be about seeing how an author would do with a character unlike the ones he’s known for. Percival writes wonderful modern day pulp heroes that are infused with a 21st century mentality. Could he take on a Victorian ghost buster and handle it well? I think he could — and it would be fascinating to see!
8. My own Lazarus Gray by Adam Garcia. I’m very protective of Lazarus and crew but I think Adam could take Assistance Unlimited for a great spin. He’s shown us with the Green Lama and other stories that he’s an awesome writer so I’d love to see what he could do.
You guys have any dream mash-ups?
By the way, our art today comes from the incomparable George Sellas and features a villain from The Rook Volume Two.