Timeline of My Pulp Adventure Universe (Updated 8/28/2020)

gravediggerMajor Events specific to certain stories and novels are included in brackets. Some of this information contains SPOILERS for The Peregrine, Lazarus Gray, Gravedigger and other stories.

~ 800 Viking warrior Grimarr dies of disease but is resurrected as the Sword of Hel. He adventures for some time as Hel’s agent on Earth. [“Dogs of War” and “In the Name of Hel,” Tales of the Norse Gods].

1748 – Johann Adam Weishaupt is born.

1750 – Guan-Yin embarks on a quest to find her lost father, which takes her to Skull Island [Guan-Yin and the Horrors of Skull Island].

1776 – Johann Adam Weishaupt forms The Illuminati. He adopts the guise of the original Lazarus Gray in group meetings, reflecting his “rebirth” and the “moral ambiguity” of the group. In Sovereign City, a Hessian soldier dies in battle, his spirit resurrected as a headless warrior.

Continue reading → Timeline of My Pulp Adventure Universe (Updated 8/28/2020)

Emily Grace

barry-reese-1Folks know that the Grace family have formed part of the heroic backbone of the Reese Unlimited Universe – we’ve seen Samantha Grace as part of Assistance Unlimited; Charity Grace has fought crime as Gravedigger; Eobard Grace has adventured on both Earth and The World of Shadows. There are others that have popped here and there, as well… and when I decided to tell a story set in the Sixties with Assistance Unlimited, I knew there would have to be at least one Grace on center stage. That turned out to be the daughter of the villainous Nemesis and our beloved Samantha.

The task of designing Emily fell to Chris Batista, a talented artist who not only delivered the covers to The Adventures of Lazarus Gray Volume Five and Götterdämmerung  but he’s also done work on JLA, The Flashand Booster Gold. I’ve known Chris for awhile and trusted him to take my notes and come up with something special. And, boy, did he ever!

Broken Empire – Assistance Unlimited: The Silver Age is available now!

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Timeline of My Pulp Adventure Universe (updated 4/1/20)

gravediggerMajor Events specific to certain stories and novels are included in brackets. Some of this information contains SPOILERS for The Peregrine, Lazarus Gray, Gravedigger and other stories.

~ 800 Viking warrior Grimarr dies of disease but is resurrected as the Sword of Hel. He adventures for some time as Hel’s agent on Earth. [“Dogs of War” and “In the Name of Hel,” Tales of the Norse Gods].

1748 – Johann Adam Weishaupt is born.

1750 – Guan-Yin embarks on a quest to find her lost father, which takes her to Skull Island [Guan-Yin and the Horrors of Skull Island].

1776 – Johann Adam Weishaupt forms The Illuminati. He adopts the guise of the original Lazarus Gray in group meetings, reflecting his “rebirth” and the “moral ambiguity” of the group. In Sovereign City, a Hessian soldier dies in battle, his spirit resurrected as a headless warrior.

Continue reading → Timeline of My Pulp Adventure Universe (updated 4/1/20)

Kicking Butt!

vanessa_hudgens_fightWork has kicked into overdrive on my newest novel, which has no working title at present. In Lazarus Gray Volume 11 I introduce a new character and she serves a supporting role in that book… but now I’m spinning her out into her own adventure. While she teamed up with Lazarus in the mid-1940s, this novel begins in 19th century England before time-jumping to the modern day. If you’re wondering how this character can pop up in so many different eras, you’ll have to stay tuned. I know, I know – at the rate Pro Se is rolling out my Lazarus novels, you might not get the answers to those questions for a decade or so (it’s been nearly three years since the Lazarus Gray v. 7 was released and I’ve written five more books in the series since then!).

Anyway, I’m really enjoying the opportunity to write something that doesn’t feature Gravedigger, Lazarus, or The Peregrine. I love all my old characters but it feels fresh to have someone whose history hasn’t been so well defined just yet.

Will this be a new series? I don’t know about that yet – let me finish this one book first!

Accompanying this post is a great image of actress Vanessa Hudgens.

The (fictional) women of my life

scarjoI’m mostly known for my male creations — The Peregrine & Lazarus Gray, for instance — but I’ve spent a good bit of my career writing female leads. The Damned Thing, Rabbit Heart and Gravedigger all feature strong female characters and I’ve also written a couple of stories featuring Nightveil, from AC Comics’ comic book universe. I’m proud of those books, especially since the pulp field is still so testosterone-heavy. New Pulp does have The Pulptress, Elisa Hill and Callie but those are still just a drop in the bucket.

I’ve tried to add to the diversity of characters within the field while not making too big of a deal about it. The Lazarus Gray series not only features Samantha Grace as a major part of the storyline but I also have Eun Jiwon, a member of the team who is both homosexual and Korean. In Gravedigger, we have Li Yuchun, a Chinese American, and Mitchell, a British hero of African descent. I’m not doing this to make any kind of point, really — I simply want to reflect the real world, which the original pulps didn’t always do.

Continue reading → The (fictional) women of my life

Digging in the Dirt: The Secret Origin of Gravedigger

gravediggerCharity Grace – aka Gravedigger –  has appeared in three novels and she played a big role in the  “crossover” novel that paired her with Lazarus Gray and The Peregrine. She’s become one of my most popular creations, thanks in no small part to the stunning costume design that George Sellas came up with. But where did she come from? What inspirations led her to spring forth from my crowded little mind?

What follows is an essay that ran in the first volume of The Adventures of Gravedigger. If you’ve read it before, hopefully you’ll enjoy seeing it again — if it’s your first time, expect a few insights into my creative process. I’ve tweaked it from the original in a few places, removing a link to the blog and altering the name of Max Davies’ costumed identity.

And now on to the main event:

Continue reading → Digging in the Dirt: The Secret Origin of Gravedigger

Reese Unlimited Purchased by Pro Se Productions

sourcebook_cover_smallWhat follows is the press release announcing the sale of my Reese Unlimited properties to Pro Se Productions. For those of you wondering what this means, just know that I wouldn’t have done it if I hadn’t thought it was a good deal. I’ll still have the ability to write new Lazarus Gray novels (he’s the character nearest and dearest to my heart)… it’ll just be work-for-hire instead of being “mine.” I’ve been privy to some of Pro Se’s plans for this universe of characters and I’m pretty darned excited to see them! I’ll continue writing – and blogging – about Reese Unlimited. The changes are really just behind-the-scenes things – I know that some of these characters are beloved by many readers and, rest assured, they are in good hands.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

PRO SE PRODUCTIONS PURCHASES AUTHOR BARRY REESE’S ‘REESE UNLIMITED’ PROPERTIES! MAJOR PLANS IN WORKS FOR ICONIC NEW PULP CHARACTERS!

In 2011, Pro Se Productions, then a fledgling New Pulp Publisher, licensed the property now known as The Peregrine, a well known character in the New Pulp Movement even at that time, from author Barry Reese. In eight years, now award winning author Reese has not only continued to publish with Pro Se, a cutting edge independent Publisher of New Pulp and Genre Fiction, but he has become prolific enough that Pro Se gave its first author imprint to his universe, calling it REESE UNLIMITED. Characters such as Lazarus Gray, Gravedigger, Babylon, and many others populate the literary world Reese has created. Today, Pro Se Productions announces the acquisition of all creations, publications, and all rights to concepts created by Barry Reese that are under the umbrella of REESE UNLIMITED.

This is an opportunity,” says Tommy Hancock, Editor in Chief of and Partner in Pro Se, “that doesn’t come along very often. First, to be associated with a creator of Barry’s caliber for so long and to watch a literal entire fictional universe grow from his work is an honor all by itself. But now, to be trusted with the creative future and success of these worlds he has created, to not only carry on the quality of work Barry has produced, but to be able to expand on it, both with more works from Barry and new projects featuring other writers, honor doesn’t even cover it. Now as a permanent part of Pro Se Productions, we will carry on the legacy Barry successfully started- to make REESE UNLIMITED not just the name of an imprint, but a proven fact. There’s no limit to where these concepts can go.”

Reese will continue as the sole author of THE ADVENTURES OF LAZARUS GRAY, seven volumes published and four more already completed. He will also contribute, by his choice, to future works. In the coming days, Pro Se will make announcements concerning plans and submission calls for a variety of characters in the REESE UNLIMITED catalog, including The Peregrine, Gravedigger, Babylon, and many others. Anthologies and novels are being considered for multiple characters, with the intent to produce 4-6 books a year in the REESE UNLIMITED line.

“All creative people understand that their characters are like children,” says Reese, “and there are very few people on this planet that I would trust with my ‘kids.’ The folks at Pro Se have been like family to me and I definitely feel safe knowing that the various heroes and villains of the Reese Unlimited universe will be safeguarded by the likes of Tommy Hancock. I’m looking forward to continuing my association with Lazarus Gray and I’m eager to see what Pro Se has up their collective sleeves for the likes of Gravedigger and The Peregrine.”

Any authors interested in being a part of the plans Pro Se has for the REESE UNLIMITED imprint, may email Hancock at editorinchief@prose-press.com for further information.

To learn more about Pro Se Productions, go to www.prose-press.com. Like Pro Se on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ProSeProductions.

Timeline of my Pulp Adventure Universe (updated 8/20/2019)

small_lazarus_batistaMajor Events specific to certain stories and novels are included in brackets. Some of this information contains SPOILERS for The Peregrine, Lazarus Gray, Gravedigger and other stories.

~ 800 Viking warrior Grimarr dies of disease but is resurrected as the Sword of Hel. He adventures for some time as Hel’s agent on Earth. [“Dogs of War” and “In the Name of Hel,” Tales of the Norse Gods].

1748 – Johann Adam Weishaupt is born.

1750 – Guan-Yin embarks on a quest to find her lost father, which takes her to Skull Island [Guan-Yin and the Horrors of Skull Island].

1776 – Johann Adam Weishaupt forms The Illuminati. He adopts the guise of the original Lazarus Gray in group meetings, reflecting his “rebirth” and the “moral ambiguity” of the group. In Sovereign City, a Hessian soldier dies in battle, his spirit resurrected as a headless warrior.

Continue reading → Timeline of my Pulp Adventure Universe (updated 8/20/2019)

It’s the end of June… already?!

We’re headed into the second half of the year, believe it or not. I’m over 27,000 words into the eleventh volume of Lazarus Gray and before the end of the year you will hopefully see the eighth volume published, along with at least one or two other things.

On other fronts, I’m about to begin reading Zot! by Scott McCloud. I’ve always wanted to read this and I’ve finally gotten trades that collect the entire series. I’ll let you know what I think of it.

I’ve been talking with my  longtime collaborator George Sellas about a new addition to the Grace family that has populated my pulp adventure universe – if you’ve read much of my work, you’re familiar with Eobard Grace, Samantha Grace and Charity Grace (Gravedigger), among others… this new addition would be set in the modern day. I’ll keep you updated on new developments.

 

Spending Time in Sovereign City

nakam_bw_largeMy personal life has been topsy-turvy lately and I was really struggling with my writing as a result. I kind of sputtered my way through 20,000+ words on a Babylon sequel and about 3,000 on a Gothic-style story. I was still sad, though, and unhappy with what I was producing.

So I’ve done what I always do when nothing else seems to work: I go back to Sovereign City. A joint creation of myself, Tommy Hancock and Derrick Ferguson, the Sovereign City Project was going to be home to several characters as part of a shared universe. Tommy delivered Doc Daye, Derrick brought in Fortune McCall and I had Lazarus Gray (and, later, Gravedigger). Me being me, I also tied in The Peregrine and everything including the kitchen sink.

Writing about Lazarus and his companions brings me peace – it always feels like coming home and the words come easily. The book I’m working on now is the 11th volume… books 8-10, plus a Lazarus/Nightveil book, are already in Pro Se’s hands. Volume 11 will bring back Nakam, a character I introduced back in book 6. I may be living on my own now after twenty-three years of marriage but Lazarus and I will hopefully be spending many more years (and volumes) together.

It’s funny that fictional characters can become so real that they’re like family. I need them more than ever and they haven’t let me down yet.

The art accompanying this post is by George Sellas.