Sheldon Jaffery

Sheldon Jaffery (April 22, 1934 – July 10, 2003) was an American bibliographer. An attorney by profession, he was an aficionado of Weird Tales magazine, Arkham House books, the weird menace pulps, and related topics.

He died in 2003 of septic shock contracted while being treated for lung cancer.


  • Double Trouble: A Bibliographic Chronicle of Ace Mystery Doubles, Starmont Popular Culture Series no. 11, Borgo Press, 1987. ISBN 1-55742-118-8.
  • Collector's Index to Weird Tales (with Fred Cook). Bowling Green State University Popular Press, August 1985. ISBN 0-87972-284-3.
  • Future and Fantastic Worlds: Bibliography of DAW Books, Starmont Reference Guide, No. 4. ISBN 1-55742-003-3.
  • Horrors and Unpleasantries: A Bibliographical History & Collector's Price Guide to Arkham House, Bowling Green State University Popular Press, 1982. ISBN 0-87972-220-7.
  • Selected Tales of Grim and Grue from the Horror Pulps, Bowling Green State University Popular Press, 1982. ISBN 0-87972-392-0.
  • Sensuous Science Fiction From the Weird and Spicy Pulps, Bowling Green State University Popular Press, 1982. ISBN 0-87972-306-8.
  • The Weirds, Starmont House Inc., 1987. ISBN 0-930261-92-5.
  • The Arkham House Companion: Fifty Years of Arkham House, Starmont House Inc., 1989. ISBN 1-55742-004-1. (A revised, updated and expanded edition of Horrors and Unpleasantries).

Unpublished work

  • Double Futures: An Annotated Bibliography of the Ace Science Fiction Doubles. Planned for release by Borgo Press in 1999 (assigned ISBN 1-55742-139-0), but never issued.


  • Clute, John, "Sheldon R. Jaffery", in Clute, John; Nicholls, Peter (1993). The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction. New York: St. Martin's Press, Inc. p. 636. ISBN 0-312-09618-6.

External links

Conan the Destroyer (novel)

Conan the Destroyer is a fantasy novel written by Robert Jordan featuring Robert E. Howard's seminal sword and sorcery hero Conan the Barbarian, a novelization of the feature film of the same name. It was first published in paperback by Tor Books in 1984.

HWA Silver Hammer Award

The Horror Writers Association (HWA) periodically gives the Silver Hammer Award to an HWA volunteer who has done a truly massive amount of work for the organization, often unsung and behind the scenes. It was instituted in 1996, and is decided by a vote of HWA's Board of Trustees.

The award is so named because it represents the careful, steady, continuous work of building HWA's "house" — the many institutional systems that keep the organization functioning on a day-to-day basis. The award itself is a chrome-plated hammer with an engraved plaque on the handle. The chrome hammer is also a satisfying allusion to The Beatles' song, "Maxwell's Silver Hammer", a miniature horror story in itself.

The Horror Writers Association is a worldwide organization promoting dark literature and its creators. It has over 700 members who write, edit and publish professionally in fiction, nonfiction, videogames, films, comics, and other media.

Marjorie Bowen

Marjorie Bowen (pseudonym of Mrs Margaret Gabrielle Vere Long née Campbell; 1 November 1885 – 23 December 1952) was a British author who wrote historical romances, supernatural horror stories, popular history and biography.

Ormond Robbins

Ormond Orlea Robbins (March 14, 1910 – July 21, 1984) was an American author of hardboiled detective fiction and weird fiction. His work was primarily published in the Popular Publications catalog of pulp fiction. The most part of his work for Popular Publications was attributed to his pen names Dane Gregory and, occasionally, Breck Tarrant.

In The Shudder Pulps, Robert Kenneth Jones places Dane Gregory's detective fiction in the vogue of the "defective detective" in the late nineteen-thirties and early forties. Recurring characters in Dane Gregory's fiction included Rocky Rhodes, ex-convict turned private investigator, and Satan Jones.Ormond Robbins' brother Wayne Robbins also wrote fiction for the pulps. The two brothers even collaborated on a western story, Murder Boss Of The Poverty Pool that was featured in 10 Story Western Magazine in September 1941.

Otis Adelbert Kline

Otis Adelbert Kline (July 1, 1891 – October 24, 1946) born in Chicago, Illinois, USA, was a songwriter, an adventure novelist and literary agent during the pulp era. Much of his work first appeared in the magazine Weird Tales. Kline was an amateur orientalist and a student of Arabic, like his friend and sometime collaborator, E. Hoffmann Price.

Someone in the Dark

For the Michael Jackson song of the same name, see E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (album).Someone in the Dark is a collection of fantasy and horror short stories by author August Derleth. It was released in 1941 and was the second book published by Arkham House. 1,115 copies were printed, priced at $2.00. In Thirty Years of Arkham House, Derleth implied that this title had sold out by the end of 1944.

However, more than twenty years later, in 1967, Derleth listed Someone in the Dark in an Arkham House bulletin with this announcement: "We have acquired a small stock of this title, Derleth's first collection of macabre tales, published in 1941. They will be sold at $5.00 the copy to patrons interested in acquiring the book..."

Derleth was being disingenuous in suggesting these 'unearthed' copies were the 1941 edition. The additional 300 copies were printed in offset by Hunter Publishing Co. in Winston-Salem, NC in 1965, the reprint probably authorized by Derleth himself. (In The Arkham House Companion, Sheldon Jaffery quotes a letter that seems to indicate this). The 1965 reprint are a quarter-inch higher than the originals, and are bound with headbands (not present in the 1941 first editions).

The 1965 edition is scarce. While it is not generally considered an official Arkham House publication, it is considered an essential acquisition for Arkham House completists.

A paperback reprint was issued by Jove Books in 1978.

Wayne Robbins

Windom Wayne Robbins (July 22, 1914 – January 18, 1958) was an American author of horror and weird fiction. His work was primarily published in the Popular Publications catalog of weird menace pulp fiction. His first published short story was Horror's Holiday Special in the July 1939 issue of Dime Mystery Magazine.

Robert Kenneth Jones reported that Robbins "excelled in explosive chaos," and remarked on his "credible" speculative fiction, namely Test Tube Frankenstein, from the May 1940 issue of Terror Tales, a tale of biological mimicry along the lines of Don A. Stuart's Who Goes There?. Test Tube Frankenstein is featured in Sheldon Jaffery's anthology Sensuous Science Fiction of the Weird and Spicy Pulps, where it is offered as his prime example: "one of the best of its kind to be published."Weird menace stories often dealt with conventional themes required by the publisher, themes in which an author might specialize. Stories involving "Inescapable Doom" were supplied by Donald Dale (Mary Dale Buckner); Mindret Lord handled the "Woman Without Volition"; Ray Cummings delivered stories about the "Girl Obsessed"; and many of Wayne Robbins' stories portrayed the "Man Obsessed," and a subsequent descent into madness.Wayne Robbins' published works are usually attributed to Wayne Robbins or W. Wayne Robbins, but he occasionally used the pen name Wyndham Brooks, a variation on his own given name and his mother's maiden name.

Wayne Robbins' brother, Ormond Robbins, also wrote horror, hardboiled, and western fiction for Popular Publications. Ormond Robbins used the pen names Dane Gregory and Breck Tarrant.

Weird Tales

Weird Tales is an American fantasy and horror fiction pulp magazine founded by J. C. Henneberger and J. M. Lansinger in late 1922. The first issue, dated March 1923, appeared on newsstands February 18th. The first editor, Edwin Baird, printed early work by H. P. Lovecraft, Seabury Quinn, and Clark Ashton Smith, all of whom would go on to be popular writers, but within a year the magazine was in financial trouble. Henneberger sold his interest in the publisher, Rural Publishing Corporation, to Lansinger and refinanced Weird Tales, with Farnsworth Wright as the new editor. The first issue under Wright's control was dated November 1924. The magazine was more successful under Wright, and despite occasional financial setbacks it prospered over the next fifteen years. Under Wright's control the magazine lived up to its subtitle, "The Unique Magazine", and published a wide range of unusual fiction.

Lovecraft's Cthulhu mythos stories first appeared in Weird Tales, starting with "The Call of Cthulhu" in 1928. These were well-received, and a group of writers associated with Lovecraft wrote other stories set in the same milieu. Robert E. Howard was a regular contributor, and published several of his Conan the Barbarian stories in the magazine, and Seabury Quinn's series of stories about Jules de Grandin, a detective who specialized in cases involving the supernatural, was very popular with the readers. Other well-liked authors included Nictzin Dyalhis, E. Hoffmann Price, Robert Bloch, and H. Warner Munn. Wright published some science fiction, along with the fantasy and horror, partly because when Weird Tales was launched there were no magazines specializing in science fiction, but he continued this policy even after the launch of magazines such as Amazing Stories in 1926. Edmond Hamilton wrote a good deal of science fiction for Weird Tales, though after a few years he used the magazine for his more fantastic stories, and submitted his space operas elsewhere.

In 1938 the magazine was sold to William Delaney, the publisher of Short Stories, and within two years Wright, who was ill, was replaced by Dorothy McIlwraith as editor. Although some successful new authors and artists, such as Ray Bradbury and Hannes Bok, continued to appear, the magazine is considered by critics to have declined under McIlwraith from its heyday in the 1930s. Weird Tales ceased publication in 1954, but since then numerous attempts have been made to relaunch the magazine, starting in 1973. The longest-lasting version began in 1988 and ran with an occasional hiatus for over 20 years under an assortment of publishers. In the mid-1990s the title was changed to Worlds of Fantasy & Horror because of licensing issues, with the original title returning in 1998. As of 2018, the most recent published issue was dated Spring 2014.

The magazine is regarded by historians of fantasy and science fiction as a legend in the field, with Robert Weinberg, author of a history of the magazine, considering it "the most important and influential of all fantasy magazines". Weinberg's fellow historian, Mike Ashley, is more cautious, describing it as "second only to Unknown in significance and influence", adding that "somewhere in the imagination reservoir of all U.S. (and many non-U.S.) genre-fantasy and horror writers is part of the spirit of Weird Tales".

Weird fiction

Weird fiction is a subgenre of speculative fiction originating in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. John Clute defines weird fiction as a "Term used loosely to describe Fantasy, Supernatural Fiction and Horror tales embodying transgressive material". China Miéville defines weird fiction thus: "Weird Fiction is usually, roughly, conceived of as a rather breathless and generically slippery macabre fiction, a dark fantastic (“horror” plus “fantasy”) often featuring nontraditional alien monsters (thus plus “science fiction”)." Discussing the "Old Weird Fiction" published in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Jeffrey Andrew Weinstock says, "Old Weird fiction utilises elements of horror, science fiction and fantasy to showcase the impotence and insignificance of human beings within a much larger universe populated by often malign powers and forces that greatly exceed the human capacities to understand or control them." Weird fiction either eschews or radically reinterprets ghosts, vampires, werewolves, and other traditional antagonists of supernatural horror fiction. Weird fiction is sometimes symbolised by the tentacle, a limb-type absent from most of the monsters of European folklore and gothic fiction, but often attached to the monstrous creatures created by weird fiction writers such as William Hope Hodgson, M. R. James, and H. P. Lovecraft. Weird fiction often attempts to inspire awe as well as fear in response to its fictional creations, causing

commentators like Miéville to say that weird fiction evokes a sense of the numinous. Although "weird fiction" has been chiefly used as a historical description for works through the 1930s, the term has also been increasingly used since the 1980s, sometimes to describe slipstream fiction that blends horror, fantasy, and science fiction.

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