Thursday, June 21, 2012

The Re-emergence of Pulp Fiction by H. David Blalock

We're pleased to welcome H. David Blalock into the Salon today. Follow the links below to check out his genre-bending new title, Angelkiller. 

Hello. My name is David and I write fiction. All kinds of fiction, but mostly the type that makes the reader scratch their head and wonder what the heck I was thinking. Typical of this is my latest novel Angelkiller (Seventh Star Press, 2011), which answers the question "Why do bad things happen to good people?" with the simple answer: because in the war between the Angels of Light and Darkness, the Darkness won and has convinced mankind ever since they are the good guys.

My novel is called urban fantasy because it doesn't fit into any other category. I like to make people think, because we don't do enough of that any more. Our children are not taught how to think in school, they are told what to think. Our news outlets don't tell us what happened, they tell us what that supposedly meant. Our fiction, in literature and movies, is filled with messages sometimes subtle, sometimes blatant, about the current social and political agendas. We are no longer encouraged to make our own decisions, no longer taught there really is a difference between right and wrong. We are allowed, and allow, shades of gray then wonder why crime is on the rise and wars continue.

Today we look back on the 1930s and call it campy and kitch. It seems this generation is beginning to argue that point. Pulp fiction, the pre-WWII equivalent of today's Syfy, Chiller, and Cloo Channels, is being resurrected by a growing community of lovable miscreants dissatisfied with the pablum dished out by television.

Ever hear of The Shadow? Doc Savage? The Whisperer? Captain Zero? Their grandchildren are appearing now in New Pulp comics and stories from such publishers as Pro Se Productions, Dark Horse, and Airship 27. The steampunk movement is just one of several branches of new pulp, one that has received the most attention but certainly not the only branch active. From mens' adventure to occult stories, weird horror to dark mystery, even resurrections of some of the best known pulp stars like Conan the Barbarian, can be found in their pages.

Personally, I heartily welcome this. The heroes of that age stood up for what was good and right, a definite code of ethic that seems to be missing from fiction today. In a society that lusts after sparkling vampires and eagerly anticipates a zombie apocalypse there is little room for heroes. I prefer to think the resurgence of pulp fiction is a rediscovery of the difference between right and wrong and the definition of how that difference can be recognized.

I hope this new pulp movement continues to grow and gains the recognition it deserves. I will certainly be lending what talent I have to that effort, so look for me in those ranks in future. Meanwhile, follow me as I continue to push the limits of urban fantasy with my forthcoming novel from Seventh Star Press, Traitor Angel.

H. David Blalock has been a writer for print and the internet in  speculative fiction for more than 35 years. Inspired by the science fiction and horror writers of the early and middle 20th century, he continues to try to bring that sense of wonder and awe he felt at that reading to his audience through his stories and novels. For more information about David and his work, check out his website at

David's contacts are:

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I agree with you about pulp. My grandparents were voracious readers and they loved pulp fiction. I would spend summers at their house and read from their stacks of books and got a taste for them. Reading during the Great Depression was one of the few escapes of the time.

I'm glad pulp is back. The publishing houses have turned their nose from niche fiction for a long time. There is a big appetite for a pulp starved audience out there and they missed out on the next big wave.

I decided to buy your "Dreams of Steam". It looked cool. Thran also looked good but it wasn't on Kindle.

Great post.

Don Nutting

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