Saturday, August 21, 2021

Preserving and Promoting the Pulps

PulpFest 2021—celebrating pulp magazines, genre fiction, and a wide range of popular culture—has been going on in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, since Thursday, and events will continue into tomorrow, August 22. (William Lampkin has been posting photographs from the convention in his Yellow Perils blog—here, here, and here.)

Among the highlights was last evening’s presentation of the 2021 Munsey Award. Named after America’s first pulp magazine publisher, Frank A. Munsey, this commendation “recognizes an individual or organization that has bettered the pulp community, be it through disseminating knowledge about the pulps or through publishing or other efforts to preserve and foster interest in the pulp magazines we all love and enjoy.” Gary Phillips, a friend of The Rap Sheet as well as the creator of Los Angeles private eye Ivan Monk and the author of last year’s Matthew Henson and the Ice Temple of Harlem, ranked among a dozen contenders for this year’s Munsey. However, he didn’t take home that prize. Instead, it went to Rich Harvey. Here’s PulpFest’s description of his accomplishments:
[Harvey] was one of the first small publishers to get the pulp reprint movement off the ground. He started in the pages of Pulp Adventures—a fanzine that he launched in 1992—where he published stories from Complete Northwest Novel, Dime Detective, .44 Western Magazine, New Detective Magazine, and other pulps. Two of the highlights were two short stories by Norvell Page, offering the first two adventures of the popular pulp hero The Spider. Rich—along with his onetime partner, Cat Jaster—would go on to reprint two dozen of The Spider’s adventures in stand-alone volumes.

As [founder of] Bold Venture Press, Rich has published a six-volume series reprinting the complete run of Johnston McCulley’s Zorro tales; reprinted unique tales from one of the longest-lived pulp magazines,
Railroad Stories; published “new pulp” adventures in Awesome Tales and other publications; and pulp old and new in the continuing Pulp Adventures. In 2020, he was the publisher of Zorro: The Daring Escapades, an anthology of sixteen all-new adventures from multiple authors, based on the legendary character created by Johnston McCulley. More recently, he published Zorro and the Irish Colonel and The Promise of Zorro, the story of Don Diego de la Vega’s path to becoming the daring, masked swashbuckler.

Along with his current partner, Audrey Parente, Rich manages the twice-a-year Pulp AdventureCon in two locations, New Jersey and Florida. These one-day events help to bring the world of pulp to a wider geographic range of fans. Rich is also great at personally communicating with fans one-on-one, whether by e-mail or through social media.
Congratulations to Harvey and all of this year’s nominees!

READ MORE:Con Report: PulpFest 2021,” by Walker Martin (Mystery*File).

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