FADING SHADOWS began as a publishing imprint in June 1982 with the publication of ECHOES, a pulp hobby magazine. In 1995, the imprint added genre magazines, publishing fiction titles for the next nine years, including CLASSIC PULP FICTION STORIES, ALIEN WORLDS, DETECTIVE MYSTERY STORIES, WEIRD STORIES, DOUBLE DANGER TALES, STARTLING SCIENCE STORIES, and EXCITING UFO STORIES, plus pulp reprint titles like BEHIND THE MASK and ACTION AND ADVENTURE STORIES, until the magazines went on hiatus in December 2004. We have since returned with Kindle and paperback releases. By clicking on the cover picture along the side of the Page, the Link will take you to each book, and ordering instructions. Reviewers, if you have a Blog and can post reviews on Amazon, and anywhere else, and wish to review any of the FADING SHADOWS books, I can supply pdf copies of most. If more information is needed, I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Friday, September 7, 2018
BEHIND THE MASK V #5 contains three novelettes, Eyes of Satan, Hunter’s Moon, & Partner’s In Crime: The Phantom Detective must battle a European mastermind’s plans to bring all the mobs together under one rule, his. Then The Moon Man must discover what the mew plant in Great City is really making, toys for children, or weapons for the war in Europe. Then The Black Cat takes up arms to fight against crime and corruption in her city. Fast action featuring three great crime fighters.
Tuesday, October 24, 2017
Pangaea: Eden’s Planet by Tom Johnson. Published by FADING SHADOWS. Seven astronauts en route to Mars encounter a time warp in space that disables their ship. Crash landing back on Earth, they discover an alien planet sixty million years before the dinosaurs. Pangaea, the super continent, is filled with danger and terror, as they must survive against fierce reptiles that ruled the Earth 250 million years in the past! Surviving in a prehistoric world gone mad where even the environment can turn against you, survival is all you think about. But even in the harshest of times, two people will find their destiny in an Eden modern man cannot imagine. Available from the author in hardback and paperback, ask if interested. Now available on Kindle for $2.99.
Sunday, April 16, 2017
BEHIND THE MASK Volume #1 By Tom Johnson. Published by FADING SHADOWS. Cover titles, design, and logo created by Tom TV Powers. A string of murders and kidnappings lead the Masked Detective on a manhunt that could result in his own death. Follow the intrepid crime fighter as he attempts to unravel these hideous crimes as he embarks on a deadly trail of mystery …
Clues lead the The Black Bat to theorize that small time crime originates with a traveling circus. He turns his information over to the police department, through his alter ego, blind Tony Quinn. However, the case is not pursued until a murder is reported at the circus. Now, the Black Bat, nemesis of the underworld, takes flight to find the killer and bring the criminal activity to a close. But at every turn the Black Bat and his team of crime fighters find that they are faced by a super mind working behind the scenes.
When a new inhuman terror strikes the Slums of Akelton City, leaving the acid mark of a Skull on victim’s foreheads, can the Purple Scar uncover the diabolical scheme of a madman, and protect the innocent citizens before death also finds the woman he loves?
Private detective Sam Doyle took the case because he needed the money, but he knew the dame’s husband would never cheat on such a classy doll. But what he turns up is more than he bargained for – Hoodlums, snakes, and a cute kitty!
The Legend disappeared in 1953, and now it’s a decade later, and Carlos Donatti wants to be a Big Shot. What Carlos doesn’t remember is Legends never die.
Available on Kindle format only, for $2.99.
BEHIND THE MASK Volume 2 by Tom Johnson. Published by FADING SHADOWS. Titles and cover design by Tom TV Powers. When the most valuable diamond in the world in stolen right under the watchful eyes of Burton Blayne, it’s a direct challenge to Funny Face, the Nemesis of the underworld. But despite all his efforts, the Star of Africa eludes him.
When a young man is found dead by cobra venom, Inspector Gregg calls in the underworld’s greatest enemy, the Phantom Detective. But before the crimefighter can unravel the mystery, Steve Huston is beaten by hoodlums, and Muriel Havens is captured by the gang. Will the Phantom reach the mastermind before another dies from cobra venom?
When the Man In Purple uncovers an evil plot of massive greed, his team of rogues plan to remove their ill-gotten gain from their vaults, but he soon discovers that these seven men of crime are as vicious as any mad dog, and a wrong move on his part could easily end his young career.
A small time gang kills a patrol officer during a robbery, and Captain McGrath wants Tony Quinn’s help in discovering the killers. Meanwhile, the Phantom Detective also wants something from Tony Quinn, and the Black Bat might have a say in the matter.
Now available on Amazon Kindle for $2.99.
BEHIND THE MASK Volume 3 by Tom Johnson, published by FADING SHADOWS. Cover Design & Titles by Tom TV Powers. When the mayor of New York City is murdered at a New Year’s Party, Theodore Warwick calls in the only man who can unravel the deep mystery. But The Crimson Mask may be at the mercy of a diabolical Devil who won’t hesitate to kill again!
Stuntmen Steve Oakes and his pal, Jack Quinn, return to New York after their latest film shoot in Hollywood. They encounter a young girl running from the Devil – literally! The case intrigues the stuntmen so much, it leads to complications, and The Angel has to step in to solve the case before murder catches up to them!
Police Commissioner Edward Standish enlists the aid of magician George Chance in his investigation of the strange case of a murdered soldier. The Green Ghost takes a hand in solving the mystery. But why was the soldier murdered, and where are his eyes? Could even a ghost solve the riddle of the blind soldier?
When the British Ambassador to America is assassinated, the Embassy Attaché asks the Americans for help in unraveling the mystery. Gentle Jones, Ace of America’s Secret Service is assigned, and quickly discovers a Nazi spy ring operating in Washington. But what could be the reason for the assassination, and who is the mysterious couple, Countess Catherine Mayberry and Claude Du Val, and what do they have to do with the case?
Available on Amazon Kindle for $2.99.
Behind The Mask Volume 4 by Tom Johnson is now available. Published by FADING SHADOWS. Cover & Title Design by Tom TV Powers. The master crime fighter, Secret Agent X, is called back to duty when an overseas agent warns of an unknown deadly attack aimed at America! But even the unconquerable “X” is not prepared for the deadly menace that has been brought to our shores under cover of darkness. Will the Intrepid Fighter be in time to save his beloved, Betty Dale, when she falls into the den of …Horror’s monsters from hell!
The Lone Eagle must penetrate German skies to rescue two friends, and complete his latest mission, Horror’s monsters from hell. Perhaps the strangest case in his career, he is destined to meet an old enemy from World War 1, as well as face a new danger. A danger that means disaster to America and the Alies, should the German scientists succeed in their new experiments. Can even this master Ace of the skies win through, to bring victory to the Alies?
A mystifying murder mystery ensnares the famous criminologist and sharpshooter, Colonel Jeremiah Custer when his team encounter a young boy accused of mayhem. The lad cannot deny the charges for he can neither hear nor speak. The scientific brain of the greatest man-hunter is put to task as he attempts to unravel this new crime!
When murder strikes the Museum of Natural History, Doc Clarke dons the red velvet mask that sends fear into all the underworld, the Crimson Mask nemesis of all crimedom, but this time he is faced by another creature in a mask, Anubis, the Egyptian god of the Dead! Will he succeed, or become another walking corpse, doing the bidding of an evil master of the dark netherworld?
What did the miniature coffins signify? When men of great wealth and industry begin receiving these tiny replicas of crimson caskets, their days of life are numbered. Who is the fiend behind the murders? Young millionaire playboy, Jimmy Gilmore wants to know, and the dreaded Mr. Death goes in search for coffins of death! $2.99 from Amazon Kindle.
Thursday, April 6, 2017
HAUNTED RANGE by Tom Johnson. Published by FADING SHADOWS. Title and cover design by Tom TV Powers. When the moon is full, and the Ghost Riders haunt the prairie, a whisper is heard in the dark of night, and The Nightwind howls for justice. Are these ghostly riders from Hell, and what is their purpose on the open range? Can even the shadow of good stand against the darkness of evil on Haunted Range? Ride with The Nightwind and Imp, as they bring justice to the plains. Available on Kindle for $0.99.
Wednesday, April 5, 2017
THE COBRA: “Curse of The Viper” by Tom Johnson: Published by FADING SHADOWS. Cover titles and design by Tom TV Powers. The Cobra is back. Raised in the mystic art of illusion in India, The Cobra’s power of mind control mystifies his enemies. On assignment to New York City, Dean Bradley of British Intelligence unwittingly causes a crime wave of terror when he brings a British master criminal to justice on America’s shores. Now it will be up to him to unravel the mystery in this new land before he can return to India. But will even the dreaded Cobra walk away from this new encounter with The Viper? And now that Dean Bradley has fallen in love with the girl who knows his secret identy, does India really matter? Available on Kindle for $0.99.
Thursday, May 5, 2016
FADING SHADOWS was a small-press publishing house that began in June 1982 with the publication of ECHOES, the hobby magazine for the pulp enthusiast. It was originally published out of Knox City, Texas, but in May 1983 the operation moved to Seymour, Texas where it remains to this day. ECHOES lasted for 100 issues before becoming a newsletter, finally ceasing in December 2004.
In June 1995, FADING SHADOWS branched out to fiction magazines with the first issue of CLASSIC PULP FICTION STORIES. That first issue contained a number of stories written in the pulp tradition, from a Vietnam War story to the start of a science fiction serial. Also in the first issue were new stories of Ki-Gor, Doc Harker, Bill Barnes, and the Phantom Detective. In coming issues, there were more of the same, though the characters still under copyright were quickly dropped. But the writers continued to send in new adventures of the Black Bat, Phantom Detective, Doctor Death, and even a Jim Hatfield western by James Reasoner. We did not coin the phrase, NEW PULP, but we were certainly publishing new pulp in 1995.
Soon it became apparent that one magazine could not contain all of the stories coming in, so more titles were quickly added: WEIRD STORIES for the weird menace genre, STARTLING SCIENCE STORIES for the science fiction (title later changed to ALIEN WORLDS), DETECTIVE MYSTERY STORIES for the detective mystery fans, EXCITING UFO STORIES for the UFO crowd, and DOUBLE DANGER TALES for the new hero stories. There was no shortage in writers and artists, only in subscriptions.
There were only a few established authors, like James Reasoner, Will Murray, Clayton and Patricia Matthews, and maybe one or two others. But many of the new writers that got their start with FADING SHADOWS went on to become established writers in their own right. They sharpened their writing skills while turning out great yarns for the genre magazines, and are now writing novels for larger markets.
What discouraged most writers and artists was the lack of recognition from readers. Not only couldn’t the magazines bring in subscriptions, it was almost impossible to get letters of comment from readers.
Each issue contained approximately 40,000 words. There were 91 issues of CLASSIC PULP FICTION STORIES, 32 issues of STARTLING SCIENCE STORIES, 39 issues of ALIEN WORLDS, 55 issues of DETECTIVE MYSTERY STORIES, 63 issues of DOUBLE DANGER TALES, 26 issues of WEIRD STORIES, and 6 issues of EXCITING UFO STORIES, for a total of 312 issues. You do the math. That adds up to a lot of words for a small-press publishing house. I figure something like 1,248,000 words. That was a lot of new pulp.
Publishing on a monthly schedule made it impossible to get special art for each issue. Although there were over a dozen topnotch artists contributing to the magazines, by the time a story came in, there wasn’t time to ask a specific artist for special art, so artists were asked to send generic art, i.e., a science fiction, a detective, or a general piece, or just a flying saucer or cowboy illustration, and when there was a story that sort of matched, that’s where the art went. Artists and writers were all treated the same. There were no favorites played. The only reason the same author might appear in six straight issues was because that author got his stories in on time. But even then, attention was given to each issue, and what authors and art was on hand, and what artist or author should be next.
There were problems. The magazines were a two-person operation, Tom and Ginger Johnson, both sharing in typing stories to format. The early years were done on manual typewriters, and then word processors, until finally, Ginger was using a computer. Most authors sent their manuscript in double-spaced, and each story had to be retyped to format. There was no time for a proofreader, and one was desperately needed, as typos appeared in every issue, if not every story! The magazines were amateurish at best, but the stories and art were top notch.
FADING SHADOWS paved the way for the current trend in new pulp titles. Genre magazines like ours closed out the last century and started the new century before ceasing publication. In March of 2002, Tom had a stroke, which limited his workload, and Ginger was not able to take on more of the responsibility, so it was decided to plan on stopping the magazines. So one at a time, the titles folded, until they were all gone by December of 2004.
FADING SHADOWS returned in 2012, and has since published eight paperbacks and numerous releases on Kindle format.
Some day I would like to compile an index to the authors and stories that were published under the FADING SHADOWS imprint, but that would be a massive task, and I’m not sure I am up to it. However, all of the data is available, thanks to Bill Thom.
By clicking on the covers along the side of the Blog, it will take you to information on each book/series. Tom’s FADING SHADOWS are available in PDF for reviewers. We need reviews on Amazon and your Blogs. Contact us, if interested.