Novel Writing and Pulp
Hocking sent me a link to a site the other day that might be of interest to a lot of my regular visitors — although as I live in a cave, it may be that you’ve already found it yourself. Anyway, PulpRev had an interesting article on writing a novel, quickly, and it had a lot of salient points, most of which I practice myself.
I’ve poked around the rest of the site some and found it of interest. Certainly I’m in sympathy with a lot of their philosophy, as anyone who’s been reading my posts about my lack of pleasure with padded modern books, or my increasing interest in hardboiled detective and western novels. It’s always nice to find like minded scribes gathering ’round the camp fire, as Adventure fans know.
I love that they’re excited about the wonders of pulp. I’m a little confused by their “starthere” list in that it offers up Robert E. Howard AND E.E. Doc Smith, Burroughs AND Shadow creator Gibson (AKA Grant) without caveats. Sure, Smith and Grant were important, but you want to be careful before you use either of them as a model. Maybe they’re thinking more about a writer’s approach to the craft of writing rather than actual style. While I devoured some Smith books as a kid, he was pretty wooden and actually interfered with my own style development.
While I always thought The Shadow cool in concept, I usually found that The Shadow stories didn’t live up to the promise (I hear from people in the know that The Spider can really deliver what The Shadow promises).
Pulp as thrilling as it seems like it ought to be is actually rare, which is one of the reason the good Ki-Gor stories really ought to be more celebrated.
And of course, no list of “pulps that ought to be read” should leave off Harold Lamb. Just sayin’.