This coming weekend, Friday April 25th through Sunday, April 27th, is Doug Ellis’ magnificent celebration of all things pulp, the Windy City Pulp and Paperback Convention here in Chicago, in nearby Lombard, Illinois.
Windy City is one of my favorite local cons. I’ve written about it before, and in fact I’ve been attending the show for around 10 years. 2012 was perhaps the most successful, considering I returned with a fabulous assortment of mint-condition fantasy and science fiction paperbacks from the collection of Martin H. Greenberg. See the article and photos from that show in my 2012 post, “Thank You, Martin H. Greenberg (and Doug Ellis).”
The show has been growing steadily over the years. Doug and his cohorts have added a film program, an Art Show, panels, an auction, readings, and more programming, but the real draw continues to be the massive Dealer’s Room, a wall-to-wall market crammed with pulps, paperbacks, rare DVDs, posters, artwork, comics, and much more.
I jotted down a few notes last year, and promised myself I’d write them up before the 2014 convention, to let folks who may be on the fence about attending (or those sad and lonely souls, like me, who just enjoy reading far-off convention reports), know what they’re missing.
In 2013 the list of Dealers was the longest I’ve ever seen, boasting some 80 vendors. They had to add more space, and it took even longer to walk the floor. Doug reported that he sold more tables than at any previous convention, and in record time.
If there’s a drawback to the show, it’s that the Dealer’s room closes at 5:00 pm. That made it impossible for me to make it there after work on Friday. My weekly D&D game with my kids kept me tied up until after 3′:00 pm Saturday, which meant that by the time I made the show on Saturday, I had less than half an hour to walk the floor before it closed.
I put the time to good use. After a few years you tend to find a few favorite sellers, and I searched them out immediately.