Strange Trails Gets Reviewed

Strange-Trails-coverI recently contributed to an anthology of weird western tales published by Mechanoid Press. The book itself is titled Strange Trails and it’s just received its first review on Ric Croxton, who hosts The Book Cave Podcast with Art Sippo, wrote the following:

I just finished chatting with James Palmer about Strange Trails on the Book Cave podcast. The writers in this anthology are some of the best in the New Pulp field. Every character in each story could easily become the star in their own novel. Ghosts, mechanical lawman, magician, Native American gunfighter, a gunfighter from Hell and more. James Palmer has put together a future award winning novel. If you like Steampunk, weird western, mummies or robots set in the wild west that is full of magic and things that go bump in the night, this book has it and a lot more.

Thanks, Ric! I’m glad you enjoyed the book — it was fun to write my story and I hope that it proved to be entertaining. Over the years, I’ve been able to write a few western yarns (I have stories in both How the West Was Weird Volume One and Volume Two), which is kind of funny given that I’m not really a fun of the genre. Every time I’ve tried to do one, it’s proven to be a real challenge but I think it’s resulted in some fairly fun stories.

This was my first work for Mechanoid but hopefully it won’t be the last! We’ll see if they come knocking on my door again in the future.

I’m also reminded of the fact that I haven’t been on The Book Cave in ages! I always enjoyed talking with Ric and Art. Might have to rectify that soon.


Lots O’ Stuff!

Strange-Trails-coverMy weird western tale has been published by Mechanoid Press in their newest release, Strange Trails. Here’s how the publisher describes the book:

Strange tales from the Weird West

A mechanical Pinkerton man…a comely ghost…a lady knight errant in search of adventure…a mummy on the loose aboard a speeding train…these are just a few of the colorful characters you’ll meet in Strange Trails. Come with us now on a ride through a West that never was, where dangerous gunslingers encounter steam-powered robots, and Native Americans do battle with Lovecraftian entities. All brought to you by the hottest names in New Pulp.

So saddle up with Josh Reynolds (Mr. Brass), Tommy Hancock and Morgan Minor, Barry Reese (The Rook), Joel Jenkins (Dire Planet), Edward M. Erdelac (Merkabah Rider) and editor James Palmer (Monster Earth) as they take you on a wild ride through the Weird West as only they can guide you.

So what are you waiting for, partner? Put on your spurs, grab your six-shooter, prime your ray gun and get ready to ride off into the sunset with these six incredible tales of the Weird Wild West!

I had a lot of fun writing it and there’s actually a teeny-tiny connection to my ongoing pulp adventure universe… but none of you will be able to spot it until Lazarus Gray Volume 5 comes out (which probably won’t be until 2015!). Anyway, check it out — those other authors listed above are all high-quality entertainers.

The 42nd episode of The Shadow Fan’s Podcast was uploaded earlier today. This week I talk about a recent Will Murray interview where he mentioned the possibility of a Doc Savage/Shadow novel. I also review two books – Destination: Moon (1967) and the fourth issue of Dynamite’s Year One series. Good stuff!

An Amazon reviewer by the name of Randy Grim posted a brief review of The Avenger: Roaring Heart of the Crucible. Here’s what he had to say:

For those of us who have been long time fans of the Avenger this book as well as the first two short story collections has been thoroughly enjoyable. I am confident that anyone who enjoys the pulp heroes will find this a satisfying return to that thrilling era of yesteryear and for those who are curious about the character a fast paced and accurate introduction.

Thanks, Randy! I love The Avenger and I’m glad that you enjoyed the book. It was definitely an honor to work on the character for a second time.

On another topic, I have begun writing my Box Thirteen story. It’s off to a good start but it’s definitely in it the infancy stages.

I’ll be back tomorrow with more pulp goodness!

The Day After

LG3_cover_smallHello and welcome to another Friday edition of Ye Olde Blog!

Yesterday was a busy day around here as we set an all-time record for hits to this site. My post about Kindle Worlds was shared far and wide, for which I am quite appreciative. I was surprised that most of the Kindle Worlds hate that I’d seen the day before didn’t pop up in response to my posting but maybe I was just so persuasive that I changed their minds 😉 More likely, cooler heads had prevailed by the time I actually posted my blog and people have moved into the “wait and see” mode.

Now, normally on Fridays I’ve been doing New Pulp Recommendations but I think that’s going to become just an irregular feature. Whenever I have something that I’m enthused about, I’ll post about it and encourage others to check it out. If I don’t have anything foremost in my head, I won’t force myself to come up with one. A perfect solution, at least for me!

Heard from Pro Se Press design guru Sean Ali yesterday. Looks like they’re in the final days of getting The Adventures of Lazarus Gray Volume 3 laid out and ready to go. This will be the middle chapter of a huge, sprawling epic that spans books 2-4. When you finish volume 3, you’ll see that the story is obviously not quite complete but I do think it stands well as a grand adventure on its own. With this one, we’ll introduce a major new hero named The Darkling and we also see the transformation of one Assistance Unlimited member into a much darker character known as Eidolon. The cover to the third edition is included with this post and it’s by the amazing George Sellas.

Considering that the second book in the series won Best Novel, Best Cover and Best Interior Art in the 2013 Pulp Ark Awards, I’m hoping that there will be a lot of interest and excitement over this next release.

I did type THE END on the first story that will run in Lazarus Gray Volume 5. After the big events of the previous three books, I plan for volume five to follow the model we had for the first book – five or six short stories, all with running subplots going through them. The first one deals mainly with a felonious financier (I like alliteration) and a zeppelin crewed by beautiful deadly ladies. At the end of it, we’re introduced to a larger threat that will wind its way through the rest of the book. Should be fun!

Now I need to put the finishing touches on this weird western tale for Mechanoid Press and then I can work some more on Gravedigger Volume Two.

Always busy!

Monday Morning Musings

emma-watson-in-w-magazine-july-2013-02Welcome back to Ye Olde Blog! I have a number of things to share with you this morning so let’s get underway, shall we?

I’ve been splitting my reading time between Inferno by Dan Brown and Intimidation Inc. by Walter Gibson. Two very different writers but I’m enjoying both works. I took a week off from doing The Shadow Fan Podcast last week so I hope to get a new episode up in a day or two.

I now have a tumblr account, which you can access at barryreesepulp. So far, I’m not really sure what I’m going to be doing with it. I have my blog here and a Facebook page and a Twitter account so it’s not like I have a shortage of places to share my opinions. Nevertheless, I now have a tumblr, which so far I’m using to share pictures of my own work and other things that I just really like. We’ll see if it sticks around.

I hope to finish the Lazarus Gray story I’m writing in a day or two, which will let me then go back to finishing off this weird west tale I own Mechanoid Press.

Got my copies of The Avenger: Roaring Heart of the Crucible and it’s a gorgeous book. An amazing honor to write this hero a second time. I grew up loving The Avenger and he’s still right up there with The Shadow as my favorite pulp hero… now, if I could only get my grubby little mitts on The Shadow, I could die a happy man, pulp-wise.

So, I did two blog postings last week dedicated to DC’s obscure hero Pariah. A few folks responded positively but from the hits to my site on those days, i think it’s safe to understand why DC hasn’t given this guy his own solo series yet. But I do like the character and enjoy the opportunity to focus on some of my obscure loves on Wednesdays. I could keep up this Characters I Love column for another ten years and never scratch the bottom of the barrel. The Saturday Matinee thing is started to become a chore, though, as I’m running out of easy ideas for it. Any suggestions for it would be appreciated.

Our image today is the lovely Emma Watson, who has been doing some very glamorous modeling sessions as of late. She looks like she’d fit right into one of my pulp adventure novels, doesn’t she? In fact, she looks more than a little like Samantha Grace of Assistance Unlimited!


Random Thoughts

lg07_morgan_watts_smallWelcome back to Ye Olde Blog! It’s a Thursday, which means that we’re thankfully getting closer to the weekend. I have a meeting later this afternoon that I’m not looking forward to — with any luck, it will go smoothly (and shortly).

Uploaded the 29th episode of The Shadow Fan’s Podcast yesterday and, as always, I’m amazed by the response. Who knew so many people would want to listen to me ramble for 30 minutes every week? Of course, I’m not the real draw — it’s The Shadow, pulp’s greatest crimefighter! Anyway, this week I talked about two classic Shadow novels and the 11th issue of Dynamite’s comic book series.

Speaking of comics, I’ll be signing books at Avalon Comics in Macon, Georgia for Free Comic Book Day this year. Artist supreme Craig Hamilton (perhaps best known for his Aquaman work) will be there with me. Looking forward to a fun day at the comic shop. If you’re in the area, you can find the shop at 2384 Ingleside Avenue in Macon. I’ll have plenty of books on hand but if you want, bring one you’ve already purchased and I’ll sign that, too.

Sad news came yesterday as they announced that Marvel Heroic Roleplaying Game was being cancelled. They only printed two books in hard copy with all the rest being available as pdf’s only. I own them all but I’m going to miss the system. I’ll continue using it, though, and might share more writeups on this blog in the future. I had a request to do The Spider….

Work on Lazarus Gray Volume 5 is still going quite well. I still need to go back and finish off that weird western story for Mechanoid Press, too. Work on the Rabbit Heart sequel has stopped again — I hit another wall and I’m just feeling it at the moment. So it’s Lazarus right now!

Got a new review of Lazarus Gray Volume 1 on Facebook – Bill Craig (author of the Hardluck Hannigan series) read the first eBook in the series and said: Just finished reading Barry Reese’s The Adventures of Lazarus Grey Volume one. Definitely a fast and fun read if you love your pulp with a supernatural flavor, and it was interesting that the lead character put his headquarters on Robeson street in Sovereign City. Myself I would have chosen the corner of Maxwell and Grant. More shadows there you see! But all in all a fun book and I can highly recommend it.

Thanks, Bill! Love the corner of Maxwell & Grant line! I chose Robeson since The Avenger was the biggest inspiration for Lazarus Gray — and that series was always credited to the ‘house name’ of Kenneth Robeson. It was, of course, the work of Paul Ernst, one of the greatest pulp authors who ever lived. In fact, because nobody asked, let me share this with you:

Barry’s Five Favorite Golden Age of Pulp Authors:

1. Walter Gibson

2. Paul Ernst

3. Robert E. Howard

4. Edgar Rice Burroughs

5. Theodore Tinsley

There were plenty of other great ones, mind you, but those are my faves.

Our art today is courtesy of George Sellas and it’s an image of Assistance Unlimited member Morgan Watts. It appeared in the print edition of The Adventures of Lazarus Gray Volume One.

Jumping Into the New Week

spiritTook a few days off from writing but the ideas kept flowing, as they always do. I hope to finish off this Weird West story for Mechanoid Press in the next few days. Then I have a little while before starting my next “deadline” work — I agreed to do some work for Westerntainment and I’m just waiting on an outline to arrive before I begin.  In the meantime, I have a few notions that are percolating in my head… might try and get in a few words on Gravedigger Volume Two before the outline hits my inbox.

Speaking of Gravedigger, the sales ranks over on Amazon are looking strong. Thanks to everyone who’s supported this book! It’s much appreciated. So far, all the feedback has been quite positive, which is really nice.

Got page one of the revised Lazarus Gray: Origins project from George Sellas the other day. Basically, we’ve scrapped the origin sequences for everyone but Lazarus himself, expanded that one from one page to two and are proceeding from there. The first page looked AMAZING. George is so good that it’s simply incredible getting work from him. Originally, I thought about having the pages run first in Pro Se Presents but with their quarterly schedule now, that may not happen. Instead, the Origins pages will make their debut in Lazarus Gray Volume 3. They’ll appear in every subsequent volume, giving you a quick overview of the character before you dive into the stories.

Currently reading both a Rogue Angel novel and a Shadow novel… but once I’m finished with one of those, I’ll begin the Judex book that was translated by Rick Lai. Really curious about this predecessor to The Shadow, since they sound very similar. I’ll let you guys know what I think.

A Lovely Sunday

phoebe-cates1It’s another Sunday at Ye Olde Blog! Should be a busy day for me today — we’re headed to one of the largest used book sales in the state and then we’ll be checking out the new family flick, “The Croods.” I’ll try not to buy too many books but you never know… With sales like this, you never know what you’ll find. I’ve been some years and bought virtually nothing. Other times, I’ve come back with so many that I had to put them into a box to carry them! I’ll let you know how this one turns out.

Work continues on my Weird West tale. It’s going quite well and I hope to be finished with it in a week or two. Once that’s off to Mechanoid Press, I’ll have to decide what to do next. A part of me wants to go ahead and get started on Gravedigger Volume 2… but I’m uncertain. I’ll have to see where the Muse takes me.

Speaking of Gravedigger, Volume 1 is supposed to be live on Amazon any day now. I’m really excited for you guys to see it — and while I know a lot of you guys love the eBooks, I’d really recommend you get the print version. That cover by George Sellas needs to be seen in person to be fully appreciated and the interior art by Will Meugniot is worth the cost of the purchase by itself. Unfortunately, you don’t get the interior images with the eBook version. I wish you did! Plus: you get to marvel at the design work of Sean Ali, who always knocks it out of the park.

Anyway, once Gravedigger is out there, I think she’ll take her rightful place as one of my most popular characters. I think I’ve finally reached the point where Lazarus Gray is mentioned in connection with my name as much as The Rook is — we’ll have to see if I can get Gravedigger to that same point.

When I was creating Anna Holst (the star of my Weird West tale), it made me sit back and realize how many characters I’ve created over the years — just since I’ve become a professional writer, there’s been hundreds of major and secondary characters. Heroes, villains and supporting cast… it’s kind of strange to think of those characters & worlds existing in my head (and in the heads of my readers). I have no idea where I’m going with that… LOL

Since I’m looking forward to a beautiful day, I’ll share with you an image of one of my all-time crushes: the lovely Phoebe Cates. I’ve watched a lot of bad movies just to see her face onscreen. Enjoy!

Strange Trails Press Release


Mechanoid Press Enters the Weird West

ATLANTA, GA—Mechanoid Press, the publishing imprint of writer James Palmer, is ready to head into the West with an all new anthology of Weird Western stories called STRANGE TRAILS.

STRANGE TRAILS will be the second anthology from the fledgling imprint, and this announcement follows close on the boot heels of publication of their popular collection of giant monster tales MONSTER EARTH, co-edited by Palmer and comics veteran Jim Beard.

“I’ve always been intrigued by the Weird Western,” says Palmer. “The subgenre encompasses everything from fantasy to science fiction, steampunk, and horror. It’s a fun mishmash of different styles and ideas.”
STRANGE TRAILS will include stories by familiar names in New Pulp and Weird Westerns, an all-star lineup sure to please new fans and aficionados alike. Writers for this book will be:

Tommy Hancock
Barry Reese
Joshua Reynolds
Joel M. Jenkins
Edward M. Erdelac

“I sought out people who were not only fantastic writers, but who have written Weird Westerns before,” says Palmer. “And I couldn’t be happier that they all said yes.”

Palmer is hoping for a mid to late summer release. So saddle up, oil your raygun, and mind the zombies. It’s going to be a weird ride down some Strange Trails.


About Mechanoid Press –
Mechanoid Press is an independent publishing imprint specializing in Science Fiction and New Pulp print and e-books. For more, visit, like us on Facebook (, or follow the robot revolution on Twitter (


Busy on Multiple Fronts!

gravedigger_cover_low_res_cropped_with_copyWelcome back to Ye Olde Blog!

I’m going through the edits I received from Pro Se on The Rook Volume Two – Special Edition. Hopefully it’ll be complete and in the hands of graphic designer Sean Ali soon… I’ve heard from multiple people that they’re really waiting for the eBooks for Volumes 3-6, since those have been never been available. All I can say is that you have to be patient. I have to be patient, too. I don’t like having my books out of print or unavailable any more than you do. But Pro Se has a schedule to keep and artist George Sellas doesn’t work on my stuff 24/7 (though I keep him plenty busy! lol).  Everything will come in due time, I promise.

What should be out very soon is Gravedigger… I understand that Sean is working on that book right now! That usually means we’ll see it for sale within a few weeks. I can’t wait for you guys to meet Charity Grace, aka Gravedigger. I really, really think you’ll enjoy this book… and with that gorgeous Sellas cover and some wonderful Will Meugniot interiors, it’s gonna be one fine looking tome!

In other Gravedigger news, artist Jen Broomall will be doing a Gravedigger image for me soon. Not sure if it will be a print or a cover (or both) but I’m sure it’ll be beautiful. I’ve really liked Jen’s work in the past and can’t wait to see her take on this character.

Started work on my Weird West story that will be published by Mechanoid Press. My heroine is a cool character and I’m enjoying the story so far. Hopefully that will translate into some fun for the readers, as well. Since this will be my first work for Mechanoid, I’ll try to make it a special one.

Looking forward to tomorrow’s episode of The Shadow Fan, which should be action-packed. Hopefully we’ll have another segment of Calling Burbank, then I’ll be covering some Dynamite comics news and reviewing Masks # 4 and “Foxhound,” an old Theodore Tinsley Shadow novel. Should be tons of fun so be on the lookout for it.

A Tough Decision… Plus: Dynamite’s Pulp Comics for June 2013

masks08_cov_rossI almost committed myself to a major undertaking. It had gotten so far that I’d created a blog for it and even scheduled the first four posts… but then I came to my senses last night. While it’s good to do things for the benefit of the New Pulp community, ultimately I’m just one person… and I have my own writing & imprint to focus on. While I hope that someone else will step forward to save the day and keep this project going, I can’t let that force me into doing something that would result in a whole of work on my behalf without any real payoff other than some vague sense of ‘doing good.’ I did the New Pulp Bestsellers List for several years and it was a lot of work — I put in my time for the good of the community, I think.

And, yes, I know that’s all very vague, isn’t it?

In happier news, I came up with the germ of an idea for the Weird West story I’m writing for Mechanoid Press and have started that. Another new character to play with! Always fun. I’ll have to avoid the temptation to start another series, though. I have enough of those! 🙂

Anyway, let’s move on!

Since Dynamite is publishing The Shadow and its related comics, I’ve been reading quite a few of their books lately. Their pulp line keeps expanding and I’ll soon be trying The Black Bat & Miss Fury, in addition to Masks, The Shadow and The Shadow: Year One. I figured I’d post all their pulp related solicitations for June 2013 here since I usually end up talking about some of them on The Shadow Fan Podcast.

Brian Buccellato (w)
Ronan Cliquet (a)
Jae Lee, Joe Benitez, Ardian Syaf, Billy Tan (c)
Fans & retailers, order the cover of your choice!
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+ • 6/5

The redemptive quest of The Black Bat continues! As the cloaked hero launches his campaign against his criminal former clients, he must save the police from a mysterious captor. What darkness from Tony’s past threatens his newfound war on crime?

Rob Williams (w)
Jack Herbert (a)
Joe Benitez, Paul Renaud, Billy Tan, Wagner Reis (c)
Fans & retailers, order the cover of your choice!
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+ • 6/5

In 1943, Miss Fury is drunk and suicidal, dangling off the edge of Manhattan’s highest skyscraper. In 2013, she’s racing in a high-speed bike chase through Washington, DC, in pursuit of time-traveling Nazi agents. Which reality is true? Meanwhile, CIA Agent Harmon uncovers the true identity of those who unhinged her from time…

Matt Wagner (w)
Wilfredo Torres (a)
Matt Wagner, Alex Ross, Chris Samnee, Howard Chaykin (c)
Fans & retailers, order the cover of your choice!
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+ • 6/26
The Shadow pursues his crusade against crime, and Margo Lane struggles to fit into Lamont Cranston’s mysterious world. Meanwhile, Big Gun Massaretti’s senseless gang war disrupts the mobs of New York, prompting a daring heist that draws the Master of Men like a moth to flame. And finally, an intrepid reporter relentlessly pursues The Shadow’s secrets, closing in!

Chris Roberson (w)
Giovanni Timpano (a)
Alex Ross, Jason Shawn Alexander, Tim Bradstreet,
Francesco Francavilla (c)
4 regular covers will be shipped in equal ratios
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+ • 6/19
The Shadow has come face-to-face with the killer known as “The Light,” and barely managed to survive. Who is this mysterious woman? Where has she come from? And how has she gained mystic skills and martial abilities that make her a match for The Shadow himself?

MASKS # 8 (OF 8)
Chris Roberson (w) Dennis Calero (a)
Alex Ross, Ardian Syaf, Sean Chen, Stephen Segovia (c)
4 regular covers will be shipped in equal ratios
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+ • 6/26
The startling conclusion to the best-selling miniseries! The mysterious master of the Justice Party stands revealed – but is it too late for the greatest crime fighters of all time to stop the party’s far-reaching plans? Join The Shadow, Green Hornet, Zorro, The Spider, Miss Fury, and other pulp legends as they bring two-fisted justice to those who would corrupt the law!

Mark Waid (w)
Daniel Indro (a)
Paolo Rivera (c)
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+ • 6/26
Now that the Green Hornet is out of control, only one man stands a chance of bringing him down–his partner, Kato! What’s the voice that Britt Reid is hearing–and is he alone in hearing it?

Jai Nitz (w)
Jethro Morales (a)
Phil Hester (c)
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+ • 6/19
What’s worse than a supervillain? Green Hornet asks that very question when he teams up with the nefarious Nikki Stripez to crack a ring of human traffickers in Century City. What will this deal with a devil cost Britt Reid? Heroes and villains unite!

David Liss (w)
Ivan Rodriguez (a)
Francesco Francavilla (c)
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+ • 6/5
It’s the beginning of an epic showdown that will change The Spider forever! The Fly is the Spider’s most dangerous enemy – a wealthy madman with no goal but power – and no hesitation to kill. Richard Wentworth has sacrificed happiness in order to protect the city he loves, but is he prepared for the betrayals to come?

Mark Rahner (w)
Lui Antonio (a)
Jay Anacleto (c)
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Mature • 6/12
To keep the peace, Dejah Thoris must keep a dreadful secret – the inhuman acts she witnessed and endured at the hands of outlaw Tharks. To reveal such horror would break the alliances that John Carter forged, pitting all of Mars in a race war. But the price of her secrecy grants the brutal Cult of Hok free reign to launch a terror campaign of their own!

Arvid Nelson (w)
Leandro Oliveira (a)
Joe Jusko, Lucio Parrillo (c)
2 regular covers will be shipped in equal ratios
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Mature • 6/26
The Red Planet is a world of secrets, but Martians lack the innate curiosity of Earthlings. Why? Because on Mars, the past can come back to haunt you – literally! When John Carter discovers the inner workings of a mysterious tower over his capital, he unleashes an ancient evil that could lay waste to his empire!

Arvid Nelson (w)
Daniel Sampere, Stefano Martino, Leandro Oliviera (a)
Joe Jusko (c)
FC • 168 pages • $19.99 • Mature • 6/26 (C:0-1-2)
John Carter has freed Mars from Issus, the false goddess whose tyranny once ruled the entire planet… but at a great personal cost. Dejah Thoris, his beloved princess, was kidnapped by a renegade priest bent on revenge! Activating a doomsday device to destroy the fragile Martian atmosphere, the evil Shang flees into the unknown regions of the north. Carter, aided by his son Carthoris and trusted alien pet Woola, must unite the many races of Mars — despite the ages of distrust and open warfare — to avert Judgment Day!

Robert Place Napton (w)
Carlos Rafael (a)
Wagner Reis, Fabiano Neves (c)
2 regular covers will be shipped in equal ratios
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Mature • 6/5
The Machine Men march on Helium, and the Red nations position themselves for war! Meanwhile, Dejah discovers that someone from her past has been conscripted into service by the Machine Men… and intends to settle a score with the Princess of Helium!

FC • 12” x 12” • $14.99 • Advance-solicit. In stores August 2013 (C:0-1-2)
The beautiful heroine of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ science fiction masterpiece Warlord of Mars graces every page of this 2014 calendar! Dejah Thoris, bride of John Carter and warrior princess of Barsoom, commands attention with her powerful presence and alluring looks. Journey to the faraway Red Planet twelve months of the year with this exotic Martian goddess!