Why do I like pulp stories? I’ll tell you why. They are tales filled with plot, action, adventure, and happy endings. Well, mostly happy endings. You’ll find stories about good guys and bad guys and where good ultimately triumphs over evil, as it should. There is another reason I love the stories of old. We live in a harsh unforgiving world where you find madness daily, where logic and reason have disappeared seemingly outlawed, and where people die and suffer frequently.
Stories, apart from generating hope, should provide a temporary reprieve from reality. Like a good dream, it’s supposed to cart you away on a rollercoaster ride of awe and wonder and take you on a journey of discovery. A journey filled with highs and lows but ultimately rewards you with a satisfying conclusion. Yes, there are happy endings in life, and we celebrate them when they occur, but they are few and fleeting, and because living is no pushover, stories must go the other route. It must entertain and then leave you feeling good and energized, even contemplative, even if it’s just for a moment or two afterward. Stories, as a general rule, should not turn you into a nihilistic zombie.
And so I embrace hope and I embrace wonder and awe, and when you find a publication that tries to recapture that glory of the old pulps, where you allow the story to be nothing more than just an entertaining yarn, you embrace it and cuddle it, and tell people about it. Hell, you climb to the roof and shout it out for the world to hear. Or something like that but less dangerous.
And so, I want to tell you about StoryHack Action & Adventure, issue 1. If you recall, I introduced you to issue 0 a few months ago here. It’s the brainchild of Bryce A. Beattie who lists Doc Savage, Robert E. Howard’s Conan, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Doc E. E. Smith, space opera, sword & sorcery, and Pulp stories in general as his source of inspiration.
StoryHack Action & Adventure is a fiction magazine in the style of the great pulps of years past. It includes stories from a variety of genres and celebrates pulse-pounding fiction that is fun to read and takes you on an awesome ride. With a focus on the Modern Action Thriller, Sword & Sorcery, Planetary Adventure, Urban Fantasy, and Historical Adventure, you know you cannot go wrong.
From StoryHack’s website:
StoryHack, Issue #1 is here! In this issue, we have furious space opera, martian-punching planetary noir, a heapin’ helpin’ of weird westerns, and a whole lot more. This issue adds interior art for every story and it looks fantastic. David J. West, Julie Frost, and Jay Barnson are returning with exciting stories, and there are many new friends as well. Thanks to everyone who backed on Kickstarter!
In this issue, you’ll find:
“New Rules for Rocket Nauts” by Michael DeCarolis. A recently dismissed recruit watches in horror as an alien race betrays and massacres his former classmates. Now he may be the only person capable of stopping the first wave of an interstellar war.
“The Price of Hunger” by Kevyn Winkless. A desperate chase through the woods leads to an occupied cabin. Has Fred Moose doomed everyone to be slaughtered by the wending outside?
“Retrieving Abe” by Jay Barnson. Lydia Madison is the daughter of a dragon hunter and the second of three wives in a plural marriage in a tiny village in the Utah Territory. When her husband is abducted by a dragon, only Lydia can rescue him… even if it means trading her own life for his.
“Protector of Newington” by John M Olsen. A wealthy inventor has been secretly sponsoring do-gooders in steam-powered suits for years. When another of his heroes faces death, can he just stand by and watch a good man die?
“Brave Day Sunk in Hideous Night” by Julie Frost. Ben is a PI with PTSD who also just happens to be a werewolf. He is handed a repo job that seems too easy to be true. Of course, things go awry and an accident flings him into a grim future. Will he be able to make it back to his wife and friends, or will he be doomed to die amongst total strangers?
“Taking Control” by Jon Del Arroz. What is a seasoned outlaw to do when she’s too worn out to heist?
“Some things Missing from Her Profile” by David Skinner. His blind date was kidnapped by Martians. He had no idea why. But he wasn’t about to let them keep her.
“Dream Master” by Gene Moyers. What strange power could cause wealthy men to suddenly give away their fortunes and commit suicide?
“Under the Gun” by David J. West. A young man with a possessed gun that can’t miss collides with an aging gunslinger that can’t be hit. Trouble and death can’t be far behind.
“Circus to Boulogne” by Mike Adamson. A WWII pilot is shot down over enemy-held territory. Will he make it to safety, or will he spend the rest of the war in a POW camp?
Now that you know what’s in store for you, don’t wait. You can get your copy right here. I have mine already.