Contributing Authors: Robert Walton, Rie Sheridan Rose, Adam S. Furman, Marcus Hansson, Catherine J. Cole, J.D. Graves, Jared Mason, David VonAllmen
Cover Art: Luke Spooner
Editors: Matthew X. Gomez, Cameron Mount
I’ve been a fan of pulp adventure fiction since I was a kid. The stories of Robert E. Howard, Michael Moorcock, Fritz Leiber, Edgar Rice Burroughs, and other pioneers are like literary comfort food. There’s something about the way they could smash together a handful of genres and turn them into a coherent melange that I’ve always found fascinating. For a long time, though, pulp has felt like a thing of the past. Something firmly entrenched in a bygone era, forever viewed through sepia-toned lenses. Even when modern writers dip their toes in that strange and sometimes murky pond, it feels like all they’re doing is playing in their parents’ clothes, or simply aping tropes and styles and voices of those that came before.
Which makes what the editors behind Broadswords and Blasters have put together something remarkable, and very special. Their tagline is simple, to the point, and even more than that completely true, “A pulp magazine with modern sensibilities.” Rather than go down paths already trod and beaten into the dust, they’ve collected a handful of stories with obvious pulp roots but told in fresh and exciting voices. Even more than that, each one of the stories puts an original spin on a whole variety of genre mash-ups. Stories include intriguing Viking adventures like The Ogre’s Secret, and the imminently entertaining sci-fi romp Royal Stowaway. It’s easy to say there’s something for everyone when it comes to anthology collections and short fiction magazines, but with Broadswords and Blasters they actually pull it off. More than that, the stories they include leave you most definitely wanting more. Each one is a glimpse into a wider world.
Broadswords and Blasters is definitely one to keep an eye on in the emerging, and sometimes overcrowded, online fiction scene. I for one definitely look forward to seeing what the future brings for them and what exciting new trails they go down.