Blog: Thoughts and comments on the world of the pulp magazines

3 pulp questions: Robert Weinberg

Posted by at 10:00 am Thursday, May 15, 2014 in 3 Pulp Questions, People, Pulps
Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

3 pulp questions: Robert Weinberg
Robert Weinberg

Robert Weinberg

Robert Weinberg joins us for the latest installment of “3 pulp questions.”

I was going to start this post with some description of Robert Weinberg’s background in pulp fandom, such as pulp fan and expert, but I kept thinking of more ways to describe him, including author, editor, publisher, pulp art collector.

On top of that, there’s no way I would be able to list all of his pulp accomplishments. So, I’ll just touch on the ones that have been important to me.

His name was one of those I remember — along with Robert Sampson, Jim Steranko, Ron Goulart and Philip José Farmer — from my earliest days of pulp discovery in the 1970s.

It was probably in Steranko’s Mediascene No. 18 in the article “The 50 Rarest Pulps” in 1976 that I first saw Robert Weinberg’s name.

3 Pulp Questions

3 Pulp Questions is an opportunity for you to get to know fellow pulp collectors a bit better and, maybe, introduce you to pulps, authors, stories or characters that you haven’t explored.

One of the first pulp references I came across was “Gangdom’s Doom,” an examination of The Shadow by Frank Eisgruber Jr. The chapbook turned out to be the first issues of Robert’s Pulp Classics, a fanzine that featured pulp research and pulp reprints.

Then there was his fanzine titled simply Pulp. I picked copies of that zine up much later than its 1970 through 1981 run.

Oh, also his zine The Weird Tales Collector. And “The ‘Weird Tales’ Story,” his history of the “unique magazine.”

With Lohr McKinstry, he co-authored “The Hero-Pulp Index” (which the two of them have been updating). And there’s “Horror of the 20th Century: An Illustrated History.” I’ve only scratched the surface of his pulp contributions.

I’d like to offer him a hearty thank you for helping me develop a love of the pulp magazines.

Now, let’s here from Robert Weinberg.

1. How were you introduced to the pulps?

I was hooked on fantasy and SF after reading “The Devil and Daniel Webster” by Stephen Vincent Benet in a grade school English book when I was 11 years old. Soon after, I began buying all the SF paperbacks I could find, using my $1 a week allowance.
Fortunately, I lived near Newark, N.J., which in those days had lots of used bookstores, with paperbacks three-for-a-quarter. Back issues of SF magazines were the same price.
Astounding (August 1945)Soon, I was buying old SF magazines because there wasn’t enough SF in paperbacks for me to read. I got hooked on SF magazines and was soon buying SF pulps at the highway-robbery price of 25 cents each!

2. What is your most prized pulp possession?

I own the manuscript to A.E. van Vogt‘s “The World of Null-A.” Some people might not consider it a pulp possession since Astounding in 1945 was a digest magazine.
I also own the manuscript for L. Sprague de Camp‘s novel, “Divide and Rule” which was serialized in Unknown.
The Skipper (December 1936)And for my most-prized pulp possession, I own one of the early drafts of “The Phoenix on the Sword” the first Conan story written by Robert E. Howard, signed by Howard.

3. What overlooked (pulp magazine, story, author, character, or series) would you recommend to pulp fans and why?

Personally, I like The Skipper series as published in his own magazine by Street & Smith in 1937. The stories don’t make a lot of sense, but the action is great. You won’t ever be bored reading a Skipper novel!

One Comment

  1. I can add a 4th question—What is your favorite memory of Robert Weinberg?

    Bob and I met at a local NYC SF convention in the late sixties or early seventies. I bought my first pulp cover painting at a Lunacon in 1970 and I went to Bob’s table and proudly showed him the large painting which was a Red Circle, COMPLETE DETECTIVE from 1939. This was before Bob became one of foremost SF art collectors and he took one look at the painting and dismissed it as worthless crap. Little did he know that he would soon be hooked on collecting pulp cover art.

    Here’s 5th question about my favorite Bob Weinberg memory.

    In the early 1970’s, we were both crazy about THE SPIDER and the insane weird menace plots. Bob found out I had a beat up coverless SPIDER that he had not read yet. He called me and talked me into loaning it but he couldn’t bear any delay in reading it, so he talked me into sending it special delivery. Later, after devouring the issue, he called me and told me in great detail the crazy plot. I don’t know about Bob, but I still have that insane love of the pulp magazines.