Voluminous: The Letters of H.P. Lovecraft

A weekly Arts, Books and Fiction podcast
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In which, on March 2 of 1927, HPL writes to Paul J. Campbell, one of his mentors in the amateur press movement. Lovecraft has plenty to say about the rise of fascism, the decline of western civilization and the untyped manuscripts in his drawer.
Happy New Year! In this letter from November of 1916, the young HPL tells his friend Rheinhart Kleiner about his early childhood. Many details are revealed, and yet many mysteries remain. Please be advised the letter contains a word that is bleeped a couple of times.
Immortality! Booze! Police brutality! Graphic violence! In a special episode recorded live from the HPL Film Festival with guest commentator Stephen Fazio, HPL continues an ongoing conversation with Robert E. Howard about the comparative appeals of civilization and barbarianism. Please note: the audio quality is a little different than usual because of the different recording circumstances.
In which an ebullient HPL squeals with joy at his aunt's invitation for him to leave New York and return home to his beloved Providence. Sure, there's interesting topics like Freud, M.R. James, and abiogenesis, but mostly Howard's excited to come home.
In which the newlywed HPL writes his aunt Lillian, inviting her to come live with him and his wife. What could be more fun than that? How about a through examination of the colonial architecture of Philadelphia and New York City? More fun than it sounds! CONTENT ADVISORY: Although racism is not a major topic in this letter or the discussion, there are some passing slurs in the letter which have been bleeped.
Two letters from Lovecraft to Smith display HPL's great enthusiasm for Smith's work as both writer and illustrator. He optimistically discusses a new magazine called Weird Tales which might prove to be a good destination for their stories.
In part two of a long letter to Robert E. Howard, HPL discusses the Salem Witch Trials and their connection to witch cults in Western Europe. He also touches on immigration and his own genealogy.
In the first part of a long letter to Robert E. Howard, Lovecraft shares many thoughts including the fascinating and sometimes horrifying history of Rhode Island.
In which HPL writes to one of his revision clients, Adolphe Danziger de Castro. Lovecraft's frayed nerves cause him to decline taking on future revisions for de Castro, but he enthusiastically discusses Jesus as a historical figure among other topics.
In which, following a disastrous experience of living in New York, Lovecraft celebrates his homecoming to his beloved Providence. Hear an emotional HPL sing the praises of a return to the place he loved most.
In which HPL writes to R.H. Barlow, who will go on to be his literary executor. This letter shines a light on why Lovecraft might have selected him for the job, as young Mr. Barlow is already at work protecting HPL's legacy. Here's the strange sigil with which HPL signed this letter:
In which HPL tells his friends Kleiner and Moe of his early encounters with Madame Greene (who will go on to become Mrs. Lovecraft). Is HPL the leading man in a romantic comedy or is he merely a Providence tour guide caught up in forces beyond his control?
In which HPL writes to a young friend of Clark Ashton Smith, telling of his travels in St. Augustine, Florida. The travelogue segues into useful advice about dealing with depression and communists.
In which HPL breaks some big news to his poor Aunt Lillian. HPL's run off and married Sonia Greene in New York! This letter is amazing not just for what HPL reveals, but for how he reveals this shocking news.
In which HPL writes to the young writer Emil Petaja. Learn whether or not Ibsen is a "weird author", how to pronounce Emil's surname, and many other great tidbits of knowledge.
In a letter of August 1923 to original Weird Tales editor Edwin Baird, HPL talks a bit of business before describing his plan to visit a legendary site of dark mystery and monster-inhabited potholes with his friend C.M. Eddy, Jr. Then as a bonus we'll hear him describe how the plan worked out in a letter to Frank Belknap Long from November 8 of the same year.
In this rare letter from March of 1923 to poet Samuel Loveman, HPL speaks with great sensitivity about their mutual friend Alfred Galpin, and somewhat less sensitivity about his own wife, Sonia Greene.
In which HPL writes to Wilfred Talman, abjectly apologizing for miscommunication regarding the idea of HPL writing a novel. This letter from late in Lovecraft's life is revealing about both his work and his concerns for his young friend's reputation.
In which HPL writes to his friend Maurice Moe and questions the truth (or lack thereof) in religion. Lovecraft gives a spirited argument to his friend while leaving plenty of room for them to agree to disagree.
In which HPL writes to C.L. Moore, one of his female correspondents. Howard unleashes a torrent of thoughts on life in the Great Depression and the response of political parties to the challenge of the times. Not for the politically squeamish.
Written during his time in New York, this letter to HPL's Aunt Lillian discusses day to day issues like laundry, and more impactful issues like the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918. Please be sure to visit the web page for this episode for lots of images and bonus information!
In this letter from 1933, HPL speaks candidly to his young friend Robert Bloch about the recently-elected Chancellor of Germany: Adolf Hitler. Lovecraft carefully explains his opinions about the ongoing rise of the Nazi party. CONTENT WARNING: This letter covers some intense issues and contains explicitly and intensely racist language.
In part two of his letter to the Gallomo, HPL describes another key figure he's become acquainted with: Frank Belknap Long. This young man from New York goes on to become HPL's colleague, business partner, and one of his closest friends.
In part one of this long letter from the summer of 1921, HPL tells his buddies in the Gallomo of a return to his boyhood clubhouse as a middle aged man. He regales his friends with accounts of his active social life, including a meeting with an intriguing woman: the future Mrs. Lovecraft. Visit the Voluminous web page for this episode for music and other bonus images. Below is a photo of all that remains of the Great Meadow Country Clubhouse: the fireplace built by Civil War veteran James McKay. This photo was taken and generously shared by our friend Donovan Loucks, who runs The H.P. Lovecraft Archive. Be sure to check it out for more pictures from HPL's happy summer of 1921.
In which, during tumultuous times, the HPLHS opts not to read a letter. Don't worry - we'll be back. Here are a couple of other podcasts that are worth your time this week: Fanti The Memory Palace
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Podcast Details

Created by
HPLHS Inc.
Podcast Status
Active
Started
Oct 22nd, 2019
Latest Episode
Feb 8th, 2021
Release Period
Weekly
Episodes
57
Avg. Episode Length
About 1 hour
Explicit
No
Order
Episodic
Language
English

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