Fans of Texan Robert E. Howard recently rallied in his defense after an Internet columnist sullied the pulp legend’s name.
Seems that writer MAGGIE VON OSTRAND wrote columns on TEXAS ESCAPES and FANDOMANIA that offered a rather sensationalized dose of speculation on the life of Robert E. Howard – and in doing so stepped into a big steaming pile of irate fandom. In a post urging fans to rally behind the good name of Conan’s creator, Deuce Richardson of THE CIMMERIAN blog blasted Mags’ column as the “most concentrated dose of misinformation and malicious speculation regarding the life of Robert E. Howard that I have ever read.”
Howard fans came riding in from the Steppes to defend the author’s honor. So great was the outcry that both websites appear to have distanced themselves from the column.
“Thanks to Howard fans coming together and forming a determined shieldwall, both Texas Escapes and Fandomania have made adjustments to Ms. Van Ostrand’s article,” The Cimmerian’s Richardson wrote in a new post. “As MARK FINN puts it: ‘Texas Escapes has pulled the article down and Fandomania has placed enough editorial padding between the piece and the site that there can be no doubt as to the veracity of the piece in question.’ Van Ostrand has also apologised for not digging deeper into the research regarding Howard’s life. So, no need to email either site or Van Ostrand.”
It’s great to see that more than seven decades after the imaginitive Texas writer’s passing, his life and work continue to inspire and delight fans — and inspire some fierce debate.