Thursday!

hipster_hahaHello, my friends! Please don’t forget that Box Thirteen is now available from Radio Archives in eBook format, with audio and print versions on the way. If you’re not familiar with the concept, it’s based on a 1948-1949 radio drama that starred Alan Ladd. It was a ton of fun to work on and I’m pretty proud of my contribution to the collection.

I’m still focusing these days on studying for the new job –  there’s a lot to learn and it’s not leaving me a whole lot of time for other things. Hopefully things will eventually calm down but until then, I’m afraid that there won’t be much in the way of updates about my progress on various projects.

Because there isn’t any progress on those projects!

Patience, grasshopper, patience.

I did manage to break into the edits on Gravedigger Volume Two for a little while yesterday and approved about two chapters’ worth of revisions. Slow going but it’ll be ready at some point.

Be sure to stop by and check out Michael Brown’s The Pulp Super-Fan blog. Michael frequently reviews New Pulp books and characters — and he’s been nice enough to focus on several of my characters & volumes, as well. Stop by and tell him that I sent ya!

See you guys tomorrow!

 

Wednesday Musings

michael-fassbender

Welcome back to Ye Olde Blog, my friends!

I received the edits for The Adventures of Gravedigger Volume Two: The Silver Skull and I’m making my way through them — but it’s slow going since I’m reeeeeally busy in my day-to-day life. Starting a new career is time-consuming, my friends!

Still, I haven’t forgotten my pulp obligations and I hope you’re all excited about the upcoming debut of The Dark Gentleman’s e-book series. I think you’ll enjoy what I’ve got planned… it will definitely fit into my greater pulp adventure universe but be its own thing, as well.

I’m hoping to get a Guest Blog out of Tommy Hancock sometime soon, so stay tuned for that.

I also got an idea for a new project yesterday but I have no time at present. I’m stuck halfway through the crossover novel with no time to work on it and I still have to get cranking on The Dark Gentleman… perhaps someday you’ll see that idea of mine in some form but not any time soon, I’m afraid.

Our image today is of the amazing Michael Fassbender, who would be my choice to star in a Shadow film if I were casting it. He’s capable of pulling off Lamont Cranston, while having the penetrating gaze of The Shadow.

Are you listening, Hollywood?

I’ll be back with more tomorrow — until then, grab a classic pulp off the shelf and spend some time with an old friend or two, why don’t you? Remind yourself of why we love this crazy little slice of the action/adventure field.

See you soon!

 

 

Press Release: The Dark Gentleman Is On the Way

single_shotPro Se Productions, the publisher responsible for the recently revealed PRO SE SINGLE SHOT SIGNATURE imprint, announces that award winning New Pulp Author Barry Reese will bring his talent to bear on a series in this new line of digital singles.

Sovereign City has many champions but not all of them get the limelight. Reese’s THE DARK GENTLEMAN features one such hero. The Dark Gentleman is a crusader for justice, taking out the small fry criminals so that others can focus on the bigger picture. But for those whose lives are saved by the masked hero, he is just as important as Lazarus Gray or Doc Daye… He is the Dark Gentleman and he’s cleaning up Sovereign City, one petty thug at a time.

“The Dark Gentleman series,” says Reese, “represents a chance for me to do something a bit different within the confines of my pulp adventure universe. He operates on a smaller scale than most of my heroes and the focus will be on mundane (but still exciting!) adventures – no supernatural forces or globe trotting. This is straight-up, in your face pulp.

Barry Reese has been with Pro Se since the early days of the company’s foray into New Pulp and in 2011 brought his seminal New Pulp creation THE ROOK to roost as a part of Pro Se. Since then, Barry has opened his mind and let his vivid imagination pour out into various novels, including more adventures of THE ROOK as well as volumes featuring LAZARUS GRAY and GRAVEDIGGER.

Barry has spent the last decade writing for publishers as diverse as Marvel Comics, West End Games, Pro Se Press and Moonstone Books. Known primarily for pulp adventure works, Barry has also delved into slasher horror (Rabbit Heart) and crime noir (The Damned Thing). His favorite classic pulp heroes are The Avenger, The Shadow, Conan and Seekay.

Reese is also a winner of multiple awards for his Pulp work, including Best Novel, Best Short Story, Best Author, and most recently Best New New Pulp Character for his creation of Gravedigger in the 2014 New Pulp Awards.
THE DARK GENTLEMAN will feature cover art by Artist Jeffrey Hayes. Hayes is also the designer of the Pro Se Single Shots Signatures logo.

For interviews with the author or more information on the Pro Se Single Shots Signatures, contact Morgan Minor, Pro Se’s Director of Corporate Operations, at directorofcorporateoperations@prose-press.com.

For more information on Pro Se Productions, go to http://www.prose-press.com. Like Pro Se on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/ProSeProductions.

A New Satan’s Circus Review!

lg4_frontispiece_smallOver on Amazon, reader Pat Casey has posted his thoughts about the newest volume in the Lazarus Gray series – Satan’s Circus. Here’s what he had to say:

In the first story, Leviathan Rising, we are introduced to (public domain character)Thunder Jim Wade and his companions as they are attacked by the minions of a mysterious underworld figure named Leviathan.

Lazarus Gray & his Assistance Unlimited organization are attacked in a similar fashion which soon leads to a team up between both groups.

Leviathan and a mystery companion are confronted by our heroes which ends in a blazing battle.

Satan’s Circus,the second story, sees the return of another public domain character in the form of the red cloaked & devil horned Dr. Satan!

The Darkling’s origin is spotlighted at the first of this story. We see what depths this great character has gone through to become the cold blooded skull faced killer.

We also see the return of Eidolon & a character thought dead who’s stories intertwine with that of the crimson clad Satan.

Dr. Satan leads the newly christened “Satan’s Circus” (formerly the Devils Circus last seen in vol. 2) on a spree of murder through Sovereign City in search of priceless gem. The climax has our heroes team up in a mix of gun play & magic to try and defeat Dr. Satan and his companions.

George Sellas provides the incredible cover/interior art as well as Lazarus Gray’s origin story in graphic form. (An art book featuring Sellas’ work in the Reese Universe would be a nice addition to my collection!)

Barry Reese is able to combine pulp & comic book style stories in a perfect blend. I would be delighted to see an entire novel (much like Tales of The Rook) where more of his Reese Universe characters are spotlighted in solo adventures. One story featuring The Darkling, another with Leonid Kaslov, another with The Dark Gentleman etc.

Mr. Reese is also great at taking public domain characters and breathing new life into them. His past success with The Black Terror, Ascott Keane & Dr. Satan (among others)are great examples of taking forgotten or misused characters and elevating them to main event players.

I’m sure Barry Reese’s upcoming cross over novel Götterdämmerung (featuring Lazarus Gray, The Rook & Gravedigger among others) will no doubt continue to thrill us with death traps, heroes who feel like old friends & new villains who we will love to hate!

A definite 5 out of 5.

Buy it. Read it. You will love it.

Thanks, Pat! I had a blast writing the book and I think it ended up showing on the final printed page. I hope to maintain the high standards with future books.

Again, the review is much appreciated!

New Pulp Recommendation: The Bone Queen

bone_queenEvery now and then I focus on a New Pulp work that I think merits your attention. Sometimes it will be something that’s brand new, other times I’ll look at something that’s a few years old. This week, I’m encouraging you to check out The Bone Queen by Andrea Judy.

Before we talk about the book itself, let’s see how the publisher describes it:

From the Pages of THE PULPTRESS Comes A Villain Like No Other-THE BONE QUEEN by Andrea Judy. All of humanity shares one inescapable experience, one inevitable fate. They all die. And in death, one woman finds her destiny. To be a Villain, to stand toe to toe with the ultimate heroine, The Pulptress. But first, evil had to rise from somewhere dark. Renata, a devotee of Mene, Goddess of Death, is on a singular mission during the era of the Black Death: to kill the Necromancer who is bringing the dead back as chiffoniers, rag and bone men. With a small band of men who have survived the Plague, Renata must find who is attempting to steal away the power of death and destroy them once and for all. Chiffoniers dog them every step of the way. And when death itself finally comes for Renata, everything changes. Once hunted, she becomes the hunter, tracking down the necromancer at any cost to herself and those around her. THE BONE QUEEN by Andrea Judy reveals the origin of its title character, first featured in THE PULPTRESS from Pro Se Productions. Proving as popular as her foe, The Bone Queen now stands at the center of Judy’s first digest novel. From devotee to deliverer of death, follow Renata as she discovers her true purpose lies in what comes after life. May The Gods Help Us All.

Having read (and enjoyed) this character’s prior appearance in The Pulptress anthology, I was curious to see her back-story fleshed out. What we have here is definitely a fantasy novel, complete with zombies and supernatural entities galore. The opening prologue is set in the modern day but from there, it’s more Robert E. Howard than the masked vigilante genre that The Bone Queen made her debut in.

The author does some mighty fine combat scenes and handles certain details with true creepiness. The descriptions of The Bone Queen munching on her bone snacks was well-done each time. The inevitable fall of Renata is clearly choreographed (we’ve seen her ultimate state in the modern day, after all) but still compelling reading.

I found myself very interested in the supporting characters and their fates. In fact, while I’d prefer to see The Bone Queen in the modern day in the future, there’s obviously more stories to be told with these characters. Heck, if Judy wanted to, she could go back even further and do a prequel to THIS story, showing Renata’s path to becoming the warrior we find her as in this novel. I’d be interested in that, too.

Well-written, tightly plotted and powerful in its characterizations, The Bone Queen is, I think, the best villain yet created in the New Pulp field. I’d love to see her continue on in not only her own adventures but she’s perfectly built for more throw-downs with The Pulptress or other New Pulp heroes. The biggest compliment I can give is that I really wish I’d created her.

Great stuff.

Saturday Matinee: Fantasy Films of the 80s!

still-of-tanya-roberts-and-marc-singer-in-the-beastmaster-tanya-roberts-1275101867Every so often I find a movie or clip that I think will appeal to the fans of this blog. Since most of you enjoy action/adventure, I tend to focus on something that falls into that category. This week we’re looking at a trio of fantasy films released in the glorious decade of big hair and gratuitous nudity — the Eighties!

First up is the opening sequence to Sheena, starring Tanya Roberts. It’s a bad movie but it has its appeal, especially if you’re a young man with raging hormones.

Next up we have the simply awesome Beastmaster. I’m sorry, I do truly love this movie. And, hey, it also has Tanya Roberts in it! Here’s the trailer for the 1982 ‘classic’:

Surely all of you have seen the 1982 Conan the Barbarian movie? While it wasn’t the version of Conan that I would have wanted, it had its moments to be sure and I still rewatch it from time to time.

ADVENTURE WANTED! BOX THIRTEEN OPENING SOON!

RadioArchives.com has released the ebook edition of BOX THIRTEEN – ADVENTURE WANTED. An audiobook will be released on May 9th with a paperback release to follow.

Stories in this new anthology are written by Bobby Nash, Jim Beard, Andrew Salmon, and Barry Reese. This new collection of stories is based on Alan Ladd’s popular 1948-49 radio show. Box Thirteen is performed by Nick Santa Maria, an actor with an incredible range of voices. Rumor has it Nick has been practicing his Alan Ladd impersonation. Douglas Klauba provides the cover.

You can find the Box Thirteen – Adventure Wanted ebook on Amazon here.

About Box Thirteen – Adventure Wanted:

Adventure wanted!
Will go anywhere!
Do anything!
Write Box Thirteen c/o Star-Times!

When author Dan Holiday opens Box Thirteen, he never knows what adventure awaits him. A former newspaperman turned novelist, Holiday crafts the plots for his books by living them. Spurred into action by letters from his readers, Dan Holiday’s adventures ranged from the outrageous to the dangerous. Whatever the case, Dan Holiday is sure to find adventure.

Based on the 1948-49 radio drama starring Alan Ladd, this collection includes 6 all-new Box Thirteen tales that carry on the action-packed tradition of the originals.

In “The Mystery of the Menacing Manuscript” by Bobby Nash, a surprise invitation sends Dan Holiday on a mystery writer’s weekend retreat filled with treachery, deceit, and murder.

In “The Horror of the Plague Doctor” by Barry Reese, a worried investor’s letter puts Dan Holiday in the crosshairs of a death doctor’s nefarious plot.

In “The Out Of This World Affair” by Bobby Nash, a cryptic message sends Dan Holiday scurrying to find the truth about Citizen X’s extraterrestrial discovery before men in black suits catch them both.

In “Room 13” by Jim Beard, a request for aid puts Dan Holiday on a collision course with mobsters, a mechanical man, and a scientist who wants to harness the author’s brainwaves.

In “The Game’s afoot, Mr. Holiday” by Bobby Nash, a killer gives Dan Holiday a chance to stop him before he murders his next victim. Can he decipher the killer’s clues in time?

In “Kaleidoscope” by Andrew Salmon, a frantic letter from a troubled wife sends Dan Holiday straight into a murder investigation where he’s the chief suspect.

Dan Holiday’s new adventures spring to life at adventure’s favorite address, Box Thirteen.

Box Thirteen – Adventure Wanted is available for Kindle at the following:
Amazon US (Kindle)

Amazon UK (Kindle)

Amazon CA (Kindle)

Look for Box Thirteen – Adventure Wanted on ebook now with an audio release on May 9th. Paperback release date to be announced soon.

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My Favorite Pulp & Pulp-Influenced Movies

200px-Indiana_Jones_in_Raiders_of_the_Lost_ArkThere’s a lot of great pulp-influenced movies out there — here’s a quick rundown of some of my favorites. Check ‘em out if you haven’t already!

First up is, of course, Raiders of the Lost Ark. All the Indiana Jones films are great but you gotta start with the first (and best).

Next, we have The Shadow. I know a lot of people don’t care for the Alec Baldwin flick but I thought it was great fun, even if it took some liberties.

The first two Mummy movies are wonderful fun — in fact, The Rook’s wife Evelyn was inspired by the female lead in these films.

Lee Falk’s Phantom came to life in a fun-filed movie starring Billy Zane. Is it perfect? No. But it’s still wonderful — and my young son really enjoyed it.

And finally, The Rocketeer. Based on the Dave Stevens’ comic, this was a fun little film — and features the deliciously lovely Jennifer Connelly.

What are some of your faves?

My Obscure Works

Savage Tales of Ki-Gor, Lord of the JungleI know, I know… it’s not like I’m so famous that all of my work couldn’t be described as “obscure” but there are definitely ones that are less well known than others.

“Six Gun Hell” — I wrote this Masked Rider story for 6 Gun Western Magazine’s Summer 2010 issue. It’s probably the only straight western I’ve ever written since my other stories were all definitely Weird Westerns. It was fun to handle this old character but I’ve never had any desire to go back for more.

U.S.E.R.’s Most Wanted – This was a sourcebook for a game line known as Godsend Agenda. It used a variation on West End Game’s beloved D6 system and it was a superhero tabletop rpg. It had some really fun concepts. I was drafted to create about two dozen heroes and villains, with full game statistics and backgrounds. It was really fun and you might recognize one or two concepts that I used there that I later used in other projects. Sadly, I don’t think Godsend Agenda is still around anymore.

“Restoration” – This tale introduced Devlin Jones to the world. A possible reincarnation of King Arthur, Devlin was a World War II-era character and I think he could have survived into a fine series if it had ever developed. This one was published in Startling Stories Spring 2009.

“Dogs of War” and “In the Name of Hel” – These two stories were both published in Tales of the Norse Gods and featured an original creation named Grimarr. A Viking who was returned to life to serve as “The Sword of Hel,” I really enjoyed writing this character in his debut story. The second tale came about when the publisher was running short on material for the book and asked me if I could belt out another story over the course of a weekend. I did so — and it’s not bad for having been written in like 48 hours. But it’s not nearly as good as the original. Grimarr and his sword have been mentioned in numerous other stories set in my greater universe… most notably in The Rook series. He’ll also be name dropped in Lazarus Gray Volume Five.

Fires of Amatsumara – This roleplaying game book was part of West End Games’ D6 Space line and it was pitched as “Firely meets Cowboy Bebop.” I created several planets and statted up all the equipment and characters that existed on them. It was lots of fun! I had always loved West End’s products so I was excited to work on this one.

Savage Tales of Ki-Gor, Lord of the Jungle – I wrote two novellas for this collection: “The Ivory Goddess” and “The Devil’s Domain.” To be honest with you, I think both stories ROCKED. I had a blast writing them and I genuinely feel they’re amongst the best of my obscure works. Obviously, being published by Wild Cat Books, they are very rough and unpolished as they didn’t really do any editing on them. But I still think they hold up well and I’d love to see them back in print at some point. I really enjoyed ‘em!

My Favorite Pulp Comics – Of All Time!

shadowdocsavageToday I’m listing out my Top 10 Favorite Pulp Comics of all time.

The rules are simple: it has to be a comic book based upon an actual pulp character. So The Rocketeer doesn’t count and neither does Will Eisner’s Spirit. Both may be pulp in “spirit” (Hah!) but they’re not based on actual classic pulp heroes.

So let’s get started, shall we?

10. John Carter, Warlord of Mars (1977, Marvel)
9. Tarzan (1972, DC)
8. Doc Savage Magazine (1975, Marvel)
7. Conan the Barbarian (1970)
6. Savage Sword of Conan (1974, Marvel)
5. The Shadow (1973, DC)
4. The Shadow: Blood and Judgment (DC, 1986)
3. The Shadow Strikes! (1989, DC)
2. The Shadow/Green Hornet: Dark Nights (2013, Dynamite)
1. The Shadow: Year One (2013, Dynamite)

As you can see, my love of The Shadow may have tainted the list somewhat ;-)

What are some of your favorites, folks?