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Background Art by Rafael DeSoto
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About This Site
This site is the documentary I'm too lazy to create, and the coffee-table book I would never be able to get published.
Let me explain. A few years ago, I was talking with Eric Stedman of the Serial Squadron about the possibility of him producing a DVD of The Spider's Web, and we agreed that it would be cool if this had a documentary as a DVD extra. As a pulp evangelist I thought this would be a good opportunity to turn serial fans on to The Spider's pulp adventures, so I started work on it immediately. Much of the first draft of the "script" I wrote, now appears on this site as A Brief History of The Spider, and a lot of the imagery you see all over this site was originally scanned-in to be used in this proposed documentary. But as with many dream-projects, this DVD never panned out. Lots of great Spider material just sat on my harddrive, unused, until...
Every time I go to PulpCon, I'm usually inspired to update my Pulp websites. Sometimes it's before the event so I can hold my head high when I am there. This year, as is more often the case, inspiration came from the Pulp-high I was on after the convention. Within weeks, using all the old scans and some new ones, plus photography, I had this entire site designed! But design is easy -- writing is hard. It took eight months to then find the time and inspiration to research and write the site, filling all the pages with text.
Yes, the design was the easy part. Have you seen Lee Server's book Danger Is My Business with its wonderful design by Chronicle Books? How about Pulp Culture? Or anything designed by Chip Kidd? Beautiful books. I always fantasized about a Spider coffee-table tome along these lines. (75th Anniversary -- there's still time!) So when I sat down to create this site, I decided I wanted to design it like a book rather than a site: full-page pictures, clean layout, and minimal (or hidden) navigation.
I'm happy with the results. It's my documentary, and it's my book. Either way, The Spider Returns. -- Chris Kalb