Hedy+Lamarr+1938So I’m continuing to make progress on Lazarus Gray Volume 12 – I’ve talked before about the strain of doing this one due to the fact that it wraps up so many outstanding plot threads so I won’t go into that again. Suffice to say that there are some very good sequences in here and it’s definitely going to be a major event in the Reese Unlimited universe. I had planned for this one to be novel-length but I think it’ll be more like volume two – we’ll have a lengthy novella of maybe 40k and then a shorter story to round out the book so that it clocks in at around 60,000 total.

The second story ties in to the origin of another long-standing character in the universe (not Lazarus himself) and will introduce a hero that might have legs to launch his own series. Maybe. You can be sure with things like that – sometimes they capture the public’s imagination but fail to ignite my own or often it’s the opposite.

Currently reading The Fifth Heart by Dan Simmons, an unusual book that pairs Sherlock Holmes and Henry James on an adventure with the added difficulty that Holmes has deduced that he is a fictional character. I’ll post a review once I’m done.

Our accompanying image today is of the lovely Hedy Lamarr.

Wednesday Chatter

lazarus_coverIt’s Hump Day! Yes, we’re moving closer to the weekend and I’m very excited about the prospect.

Earlier this morning, I uploaded Episode 58 of The Shadow Fan’s Podcast. This week we talk about the end of Michael Uslan’s Dark Nights limited series and the beginning of the Noir book. I’m definitely sad to see Dark Nights go but I’ll pick up the collection when it comes out and give it a re-read then. Good stuff.

I had planned to incorporate my Sherlock Holmes pulp novella into my established universe but that appears to be on hold. My thinking had been to tie it all into “A Plague of Wicked Men,” a Rook story that appeared in Volume Five of that series. In that story, Holmes makes a surprise appearance and he’s actually the man who defeats The Warlike Manchu. “The Eleventh Finger” would have pitted Holmes against The Warlike Manchu & his followers (collectively known as The Ten Fingers) and given the backstory for why their rematch in A Plague of Wicked Men had such importance. I’m going to have to rework that idea, though.

In the meantime, I think I might work a bit on the fourth story that will run Lazarus Gray Volume Five. As I’ve mentioned before, the fifth book will contain five short stories in a return to the format I used in Volume One. I’m pretty excited about it and I think folks will enjoy it. It’s a deliberate change of pace from the large-scale story that ran in Volumes 2-4. Plus, you’ll get to see Lazarus go toe-to-toe with Ron Fortier’s Brother Bones! A New Pulp classic in the making, I like to think.

For fun, I’m sharing with you today Anthony Castrillo’s initial sketch for what would become the cover to The Adventures of Lazarus Gray Volume One. You can compare it to the finished product to see how it evolved. Good stuff, eh?

Eidolon Gets Reviewed… Plus: work on Holmes continues!

atkinsAnother week begins!

I hope everybody had a relaxing weekend… I’ve been working steadily on this Sherlock Holmes novella and things are going well, though I do think it would be better if it weren’t Holmes! By that I just mean that there directions I think the story could go that simply can’t happen using Doyle’s famous creation. In the end, I’m not sure if Pro Se will be happy with this thing or not but I’ve decided I’m going to write it the way I think it should be done and if they don’t approve, I’ll take the story back, change the names and use it elsewhere.

Over on Tumblr, I’ve posted the George Sellas image that I’ve been teasing for awhile now. It shows my heroes summoning forth the classic pulp heroes of the past, in an homage to JLA # 21 (1963). Check it out here if you’re interested in seeing it. I LOVE IT! It’s really fun seeing my characters interacting with the heroes that inspired me as a child. George is absolutely amazing and a joy to work with.

My feelings towards writing have been very up and down lately, which isn’t anything totally new, I suppose. There are days I want to wrap my current projects and then walk away, leaving behind the body of work I’ve accumulated and just entering a writing retirement. Then I think of all the stories I still want to tell or I get a nice review or a new piece of art comes in and I’m fired up again. I’ve always had a love/hate relationship with writing. It’s more of compulsion than a hobby, I’m afraid.

Speaking of reviews, The Adventures of Lazarus Gray Volume Three: Eidolon picked up a new review this weekend. Jose Rivera had the following to say about the book:

5 out of 5 stars. At this point reading a Lazarus Gray story from Barry Reese is like visiting an old friend. Sovereign is our home and Lazarus and his team are our friends. The origin comic was a nice touch, something I haven’t seen mixed with prose. “Murder Unlimited” was a story I was really looking forward to when reading Mr. Reese’s blog. Old enemies and a couple of new ones become wonderful criminal counterparts to Lazarus and his team. Though a short story, it had me riveted. I’m also of the opinion the opening scene would make for a great short film. “Eidolon” the second story in this book was an adventure I didn’t expect. It had consequences. The Darkling was an intriguing character and like most of Reese’s stories, there’s definitely potential for a whole slew of stories featuring the Darkling AND Eidolon. When I pick up one of these Lazarus Gray stories I’m guaranteed two things: 1) Fantastic stories in the vein of classic pulp adventures and 2) Good stories that always leave me wanting more. Volume 3 was no exception.

Thanks so much, Jose! I appreciate the kind words and I know what you mean about Lazarus and his team feeling like old friends to you. It’s the same for me whenever I start writing a new story. And if you thought that Eidolon surprised you, wait until you see what’s waiting for you in Volume Four… I think it’s a great wrap-up to the entire storyline that runs from books 2-4.

This past weekend at the Memphis Comic and Fantasy Convention, I was pleased to learn that a gentleman by the name of John Atkins had arrived in cosplay as The Rook. I love it! Hope you enjoy seeing it, too.

Another Day Closer to the Weekend

rabbit_heart_newHello Folks!

I think I’m almost ready to start work on my Sherlock Holmes novella. I’m still a bit hesitant about it for many reasons but I’m going to give it the old college try! With any luck, it’ll all come together and we’ll have a ton of fun with it.

Liberty Girl continues to do well on the New Pulp Best Sellers List (# 3 this week) and I sat down to talk with Art Sippo on an episode of Art’s Reviews last night. You can download it here. It’s always fun to talk to Art and I hope you’ll enjoy listening to it. On a related note, Art’s sometime co-host Ric Croxton posted a review of Liberty on Here’s what he had to say:

5 out of 5 stars. Barry Reese has done an excellent job in introducing fans to Liberty Girl. As soon as I heard Art Sippo talk to Barry Reese on his Art’s Reviews of the Book Cave family of podcasts I had to read the book. Only problem I had is, I wish it was much longer. As always, I look forward to reading what Barry Reese has to offer next.

Thanks, Ric! Pro Se’s having a bit of success with these digest-sized books, which generally contain novellas and have a low price point. I’m rather fond of them myself even though sometimes I have to keep myself from stretching the story out like I would for a longer book. Still, I think it worked really well for Liberty Girl!

Folks have asked me what projects are coming out soon and I’ve been increasingly forced to admit that I really don’t know, lol. All of these things have been turned into publishers so they’ll be out someday (I assume!):

Moonstone – G8 & His Battle Aces; Johnny Dollar
Pro Se Productions – Gravedigger Volume 2, Lazarus Gray Volume 4, The Damned Thing re-issue, The Rook Volume Three Special Edition, my Pulse Fiction story, Tales of The Rook Volume 2, my part of the round-robin project

Radio Archives – Box 13

Hell, there’s probably more, too, that I’ve completely forgotten about. I could stop writing today and still be appearing in print with “new” material for awhile to come.

Of course, I’m not doing that, am I?

Hopefully sometime soon I’ll have something new from George Sellas to show all of you — it’s not for publication but I plan to get a lot of mileage out of it on social media! Plus, it’s going to make one hell of a desktop wallpaper for my laptop 😉

Please don’t forget that my Rabbit Heart novel is now back in print. Set in my hometown of Milledgeville, Georgia, this novel is an R-Rated horror novel that has some pulpy connections. Ascott Keane, longtime foe of Doctor Satan, is a major character in this one. If you think you know my writing, you really need to check out Rabbit Heart… and prepare to be blown away, if I do say so myself.

And bring the puke bucket!

Wednesday Things

Barry_Reese_cover_colWelcome back to Ye Olde Blog!

I finished work on the latest Lazarus Gray short story yesterday — this one is the third of a projected five tales that will make up the fifth volume in the series. So far, so good. There’s a running subplot through the first few stories that will take center stage in the final piece so I’m continuing to build towards that.

Now I’m doing research for this Holmes novella I’m supposed to write. I’m still very daunted by the prospect. I suspect the best thing to do is to simply start writing and not worry about the reception it will receive. If people hate it and my version of Holmes, I’ll just shrug my shoulders and keep writing something else. That’s the only way to do it. Obviously, I’ll try my best to honor the character since I’ve always loved him but I know I’ll never be Doyle and won’t even try. I can only be Barry Reese and hope that’ll be enough.

Uploaded episode 57 of The Shadow Fan’s Podcast today so if you’re a fan of that, get to downloading! This week I review a 1946 novel and two recent Dynamite releases: the excellent Year One # 6 and the not-so-excellent Shadow Now # 2.

Our art today is the color version of Chris Batista’s cover for the upcoming crossover novel. Colors are by Tom Smith.

This one will bring together The Rook, Gravedigger and Lazarus Gray for a major adventure. When will it see print? Well, you really need to read Gravedigger Volume Two & Lazarus Gray Volumes Four & Five first… So it will be 2014 but I can’t say for certain when. Trust me, though, I’ll do everything I can to make it important enough that it deserves to be Lazarus gray Volume Six, Gravedigger Volume Three and The Rook Volume Seven, all rolled into one 😉

Thanks for supporting me and my little pulp adventure universe, guys. I never thought I’d get to write the sort of stories that I loved as a kid — and I hope my enthusiasm for the work translates its way onto the page. See you all tomorrow!

Working for the Weekend

20121205-172701.jpgIt’s Friday! I’m very happy to be able to type those words, believe me. We’re now a week away from the 2013 Georgia Literary Festival and I’m thrilled about that, as well. I’m the co-chair of the Planning Committee and it has been a lot more work than I’d ever imagined. Still, November 9 will be here before I know it and I’ll be able to say hi to several of my New Pulp friends — Van Plexico, Sean Taylor, Bobby Nash and Andrea Judy will all be here as part of our Thriller Track! For those of you who are in the area, the Festival is FREE TO ATTEND! It will take place in downtown Milledgeville and if you’re a fan of New Pulp, you can look forward to the following panels:

Thriller Track: Rise of the New Pulp- Sean Taylor, Van Plexico, Andrea Judy & Barry Reese in Georgia College Library Information Technology Center

1:00 pm
Thriller Track: Blending Genres- The Hardboiled P.I. in Different Eras- Alex Hughes, Sean Taylor & Bobby Nash in Georgia College Museum Education Room

2:00 pm
Thriller Track: Heroes from Beyond- Van Plexico in Old Governor’s Mansion Education Room

3:00 pm
Thriller Track: The Graphic World of Comic Books- Bobby Nash & Sean Taylor in Mary Vinson Memorial Library Children’sTheater

4:00 pm
Thriller Track: Georgia (and Murder) On My Mind- Alex Hughes, Barry Reese, Bobby Nash & Andrea Judy in Old Governor’s Mansion Education Room

And, of course, there will be MANY, MANY MORE panels and authors — but those are the ones that would be of most appeal to my New Pulp friends.

I’ve been continuing to work hard on the current Lazarus Gray story and it’s going very well. I’m definitely on track to complete this one next week! After that, I need to work on the Sherlock Holmes novel and then I’ve got some Phantom Detective ideas that are kicking around. I recently acquired three of the Regency reprints that were published in the Sixties and I plan to read those ASAP – I picked up The Trail to Death, Yellow Shadows of Death and Stones of Satan. Most of my Phantom Detective knowledge comes from reference works, comic books and the Phantoms in Bronze collection that Altus Press published. I want to read some more stories before I delve into really handling the character myself. I don’t believe in writing a pre-existing character without feeling like I have a really strong grasp on his history and personality. I’m still not there yet with PD but I’m getting close.

I’m supposed to be the guest on tonight’s recording of The Book Cave with Art Sippo — and I believe Tommy Hancock will be guesting as well. We’ll be talking about the recent release of Liberty Girl. It just received its first review, courtesy of Paul J. Fausz Jr. He gave it 4 out of 5 stars and wrote:

Interesting. Did not get to see the comics when this came out originally. Fun read. Would recommend if into Doc Savage, pulps, comic books etc.

Thanks, Paul! Reviews are always appreciated — and I’m glad you enjoyed this one. I wondered how it would play to people who didn’t read the comics and I’m glad to know you weren’t lost. 🙂

Take Care, folks!

The Cover to Satan’s Circus… Revealed!

lg4_cover_final_paint_smallWelcome back to Ye Olde Blog!

Today I’m proud to share with you the cover to Lazarus Gray Volume Four, which should be coming your way in early 2014! The art is by my friend and collaborator, George Sellas! I really love it… it shows off Abigail Cross, who went missing at the end of Volume Three. Looming in the background is one of my all-time favorite villains, Doctor Satan. Let me know what you think of this image — I think it will be really eye-catching on the printed book.

All the story and art files for Volume Four have been turned over to my publisher so it’s just a matter of it being slotted into their schedule and formatted for release (including editing). I can’t wait for you to guys to read it as it ties together things that ran through Volumes Two and Three! When it’s all said and done, you’ll see that it was all one big story… And the title to volume four? The Adventures of Lazarus Gray Volume Four: Satan’s Circus.

Work continues on the current Lazarus Gray story, which is simply kicking all kinds of ass. I’m really enjoying it. I’ve gotten into a nice groove with Lazarus where even the uneven stories are still damned fun — and this one is firing on all cylinders. I should finish it sometime next week, which means I have to switch gears and start doing prep work on the Sherlock Holmes thing I’m writing. Wish me luck on that one — I’ve used Holmes before in a supporting role (see The Rook Volume Five) but it will be quite different doing a full novella. Thankfully I’m not supposed to ape Doyle’s writing style… I’m just doing a Barry Reese story with the characters. Obviously, I typically insert supernatural elements into my stories but I promise that Holmes won’t be facing Cthulhu… though that could be damned cool. Several of my non-supernatural stories that I’ve written have simply not seen print — hello, Box Thirteen and Johnny Dollar, for instance. Hopefully you’ll get to enjoy those soon.

I uploaded Episode 55 of The Shadow Fan’s Podcast this morning. I offer up reviews of The Shadow # 18 and The Shadow/Green Hornet: Dark Nights # 4, both published by Dynamite Entertainment. There are lots of great Shadow comics out right now… but there are also a few that are not-so-good. I’ll leave you to the episode to figure out which I think these two are.

I think I’ve started to give up hope on acquiring the license I was seeking. I pitched to someone pretty major, hoping to snag one of the smaller but still significant characters in their catalog. Unfortunately, it looks like it’s gone quiet on their end. In similar news, I submitted a writing inquiry to someone else that already has a license I’m interested in but no response there, either.

Oh, well. It’s really their loss!

In future release news – Rabbit Heart, Tales of The Rook Volume Two and The Rook Volume Three Special Edition are all in various stages of production. I’m sorry we missed the Halloween release date for the new edition of Rabbit Heart, but now you can get a bloody Christmas present instead.

Take care, folks!

Monday Chatter

PD1BIt’s the start of a new week and things are really beginning to pick up pace. The Georgia Literary Festival is just around the corner (November 9) and I’ll be there with a whole host of other New Pulp fan favorites like Bobby Nash, Van Plexico, Andrea Judy and Sean Taylor. Should be a fun and exhausting weekend. I’m also rocketing forward with the current Lazarus Gray story… and then I need to start work on the Sherlock Holmes novella that I owe Pro Se.

I’ve also been kicking around Phantom Detective ideas. I promised a PD tale to Airship 27 ages ago and while I think the character’s original stories weren’t the best that classic pulp has to offer, his very fluidity of character makes him something that I feel I could do something with. I’ve even had a few thoughts about doing a full Phantom Detective novel. And,  of course, I’ve considered taking the easy route and just having PD team up with one of my own heroes.

We’ll see.

My “Favorites” lists that I’ve been doing the past two weekends have proven to be pretty popular. Maybe I’ll keep doing them until I run out of ideas — I’ve thought about doing my favorite New Pulp heroes & villains, my favorite classic pulp covers, my favorite pulp movies, etc. If you have a suggestion, let me know.

There was another new review posted at Amazon recently. Ralph Angelo reviewed The Adventures of Lazarus Gray Volume Two: Die Glocke and he said the following:

I recently read Barry Reese’s Lazarus Gray: Die Glock, the second in a series of New Pulp Adventures featuring Barry’s character, the aforementioned Lazarus Gray. As with the first volume I enjoyed this one immensely. The series is set in the mid 1930’s in the fictional Sovereign City. In this volume Lazarus and his team of adventurers (professionally known as Assistance Unlimited) travel outside of Sovereign City in a search for a weapon(The Die Glock) the Nazi’s want for their own nefarious use, which can be used as a doorway to another place. A place where something very evil lurks and stirs, and has waited a very long time to return to the earth. Enter Lazarus Gray and Assistance Unlimited. Members of the team travel around the globe to search out and destroy the weapon. But will they do so before whatever lurks on the other side of that wall between places Die Glock connects to steps through into the world of Earth in the 1930’s? You’ll have to read it to find out. Suffice to say, `Die Glock’ Is a good, rousing adventure that does not bore and does not disappoint. Also there is a bonus second feature featuring comic hero “The Black Terror” which is just as enjoyable as the main feature. If you like two fisted stories with lots of action as well as sexy women, demons, disfigured madmen and magic wielding villains, then give `The Adventures of Lazarus Gray: Die Glock’ a read. There’s really nothing not to like here.

Thanks, Ralph! I’m so glad that you enjoyed the book. I like to think that each Lazarus volume has been better than the ones before so I suspect you’ll enjoy Eidolon quite a bit… and, of course, Satan’s Circus should be out in early 2014!

I’ll be a guest on The Book Cave this Friday, talking with Art Sippo about the Liberty Girl book. I’ll let everyone know when it’s been posted for your listening pleasure. I also recorded two episodes of a new podcast that Perry Constantine is debuting soon — one episode featured a discussion about the “pulp mindset” and the other one dealt with writing strong female characters. I expect at least one of them to go up in November.

On Twitter, I asked if people would be interested in seeing a guidebook to the characters in my pulp universe… sort of along the lines of DC’s Who’s Who or Marvel’s Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe. I’ve accumulated so much artwork of my characters over the years that I’d be able to get some re-use of it here. The few responses I got were positive — what say you, my blog readers?

Our artwork today shows off The Phantom Detective and a sultry female. Can’t go wrong there, can we?

See you folks tomorrow!

Friday Is Here… At Last!

roaringheartIt’s been a long week but we’ve finally reached Friday, my friends. Let us take a moment to celebrate.


Okay, we’re done. Let’s get back to work.

Over at Amazon, there have been a couple of new reviews posted lately. Let’s see what folks have been saying!

Ralph Angelo posted this about The Avenger: Roaring Heart of the Crucible:

This novel is actually an anthology by many authors including Matthew Baugh, James Chambers, Greg Cox, Win Scott Eckert, CJ Henderson, Michael May, Matthew P Mayo, Will Murray, Bobby Nash, Mel Odom, Barry Reese, Chris Sequiera, John Allen Small and David White. There are fourteen tales of the Avenger and his crew spread across the years of his career, and they are in no particular order. My experience before this with the Avenger was limited to the original novel some thirty years ago and possibly one or two more. I like the character well enough, but to me he was never a ‘Doc Savage’. The Avenger is a man who had a terrible loss, both his wife and daughter were taken from him, presumed murdered by criminals and never found. This girded him into an almost inhuman machine that sought nothing but justice for those in similar situations. The Avenger has a few special abilities which I won’t get into here. Suffice to say the volume is filled with very exciting and action filled stories about the Avenegr and his crew. Smitty, Nellie (Smitty’s lady love), the dour scotsman Mac, as well as Josh and his wife Rosamund. Not all of the characters are in all of the stories, in fact the last tale I was pleasantly surprised to find the two most popular members of Doc Savage’s supporting cast involved in the story. They were not named, but you know it was Monk and Ham. That was a very pleasant surprise. All in all this was a very enjoyable volume. It had loads of action and interesting stories throughout. There wasn’t a clunker amongst them. It was fun reading about a character I knew so little about and still be able to follow along. The assembled authors did a very nice job with these tales of the Avenger. This has a great cover too, by the way. Highly recommended.

Thanks, Ralph! I love The Avenger and getting to write the character not just once but twice was one of the greatest achievements of my writing career. If you haven’t much Avenger, you owe it to yourself to read more… his early adventures are some of the best of the pulp era.

Caine Dorr reviewed The Adventures of Lazarus Gray Volume Two: Die Glocke. Here’s his commentary:

Like a phoenix rising from the ashes this second book in the Lazarus Gray series delivers with intense action and all around fun adventures.

I appreciate that, Caine! I hope you enjoy book three just as much.

In other news, I’m continuing to work on the new Lazarus Gray story. We meet a new villain in it — a guy known as The Basilisk and he’s definitely a throwback to some classic pulp villains of the past. I think the fans will like him.

After I finish this one, it’s off to Victorian England for a Sherlock Holmes story!

The work is never done, is it? But that’s a good thing, I suppose.

Enjoy your Friday, folks!

Humpday Happenings

lo-res_coverWelcome back to Ye Olde Blog!

Reaction to the return of the New Pulp Bestsellers List has been very gratifying. I’m glad people enjoy seeing this little peek into the New Pulp world — I do wish there was some way of creating an even more accurate list but I’ll be damned if I can think of one. On a personal note, I was very pleased to see Liberty Girl debut at # 3 on said list. It was a fun project and I wouldn’t mind having the chance to adapt works into other mediums in the future.

Anyway, I’m working away on the third Lazarus Gray story that will run in The Adventures of Lazarus Gray Volume Five. So far, it’s been a lot of fun — just wrote a great action scene that was (if I do say so myself) really exciting! This fifth volume will consist of five short stories with subplots that run throughout… so this one tips us towards the second half of the overall story that makes up this book.

Books 2-4 were really one huge story so I wanted to break it down and do something that would hopefully be just exciting but smaller in scope. After all the globetrotting we saw in the three previous volumes, most of this action will be set in Sovereign, though there will be short jaunts to other locales.

Once I’m finished with the latest Lazarus story, I need to start work on my Sherlock Holmes novella for Pro Se. Before I begin writing, I’ll re-read some of the Arthur Conan Doyle originals. I know — it’s a rough gig, right? “I have to do some research, honey!”

Uploaded episode 54 of The Shadow Fan’s Podcast yesterday so be sure to check that out if you’re a fan of pulp’s greatest crimefighter.

Our artwork today is a production sketch of the cover that will run on Lazarus Gray’s fourth volume. This is not the finished artwork but man, isn’t it gorgeous?! I really, really like it. We get to see a darker Abby Cross than we’ve ever seen before… with a greater evil looming behind her. I really dig it and can’t wait to see George Sellas’ finished version. If this doesn’t make you excited about the upcoming book, I’ll be shocked! Satan’s Circus will really knock your socks off as it reveals all kinds of things that you may have missed in the second and third books!