Sunday, October 30, 2016

A Vision of the Grail

In the interview "Will Murray: Pulp Archeologist" found in Writings in Bronze, Will Murray was asked about writing The Destroyer, He responded:
"Mainly I drew upon my deep knowledge of the Street & Smith traditions for writing and sustaining pulp series: types of plots, tricks and devices for what The Shadow's Walter Gibson used to call "testing reader interest."  Having gone through virtually all of Lester Dent's surviving Doc Savage outlines gave me great insight into how to plot and develop pulp premises.  I did not use Dent's famed Masterplot, however.  The Destroyer was too freeform for strict formula.  There I emulated Walter Gibson's approach - namely that the individual story should dictate its own structure.  As a pulp writer, it's fair to say that I want to Street & Smith University."
I would so dearly love to be able to come across a listing of various pulp writing techniques or a paper or two that would describe these tricks and devices, as opposed to teasing out each one through reading essays and the pulps.  Just in case I can't find that codified list, I do have a stack of Doc Savage and The Shadow magazines just waiting to be read...

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