Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Happy Birthday, Robert E. Howard

Today marks the 107th anniversary of the birth of pulp writer Robert E. Howard. It has become a tradition on this date for Howard fans to read a favorite story and raise a toast.

You can't go wrong with any of the stories, and there should be one to suit your preference: sword and sorcery, hard-boiled detectives, weird horror, historical fiction, boxing, westerns, pirates and a sword-wielding puritan. One of my favorites that I often choose for a birthday reading is "Worms of the Earth", a story of Bran Mak Morn, last king of the Picts, and a weapon "to terrible to use, even against Rome". It's available in many publications but I would suggest the text found in Del Rey's Bran Mak Morn: The Last King.

This year I might read one of the stories from Sword Woman and Other Historical Adventures.

For more information on his life and career, start with the following sites:

I would also recommend Mark Finn's Howard biography, the Locus and World Fantasy Award-nominated Blood and Thunder: The Life and Art of Robert E. Howard. An expanded edition was released last year by the REH Foundation.


Jack said...

Ever read Jirel of Joiry? A female character written by C. L. (Catherine) Moore in the 1930s, she is one of the first later characters to clearly show Conan's influence on the genre. Long out of print, but Amazon.com has used copies for a song...

Trey said...

"Worms of the Earth" is a great one. One of my favorite Howard stories.

Kaiju said...

@Jack - Good idea! I haven't read those stories yet, although I did pick up the C.L. Moore reprint from Paizo.

@Trey - A classic!