A Rare Clark Ashton Smith Story Published

Rare book-dealer Terence McVicker has recently restarted the late Roy A. Squires’ publishing company and will soon be issuing the original, unedited version of a rare Clark Ashton Smith story:

Clark Ashton Smith: “The Black Abbot of Puthuum”

In February of 1935, Clark Ashton Smith submitted three stories to Weird Tales. Editor Farnsworth Wright accepted all but “The Black Abbot of Puthuum,” until the tale was drastically cut and rewritten. When the story finally appeared in the March, 1936 issue, it was 1500 words shorter, a pivotal character was excised from the tale, and the ending was completely different. The rejected manuscript lay buried in the collection of H. P. Lovecraft’s executor Robert H. Barlow, and only now, more than seventy years later, is the story published as the author originally conceived it. Complementing the text is a tipped-in illustration reproduced from the original Weird Tales artwork of Virgil Finlay. The artwork–long thought lost–was located in the collection of a friend of Clark Ashton Smith’s and has not been seen since its first appearance.

The RAS Press was founded in 1961 by Roy A. Squires who produced beautiful booklets until 1987, when he printed his final book, his bibliography, The Private Press of Roy A. Squires. Under the guidance and expertise of Master Printer and Designer Gerald Lange, Terence McVicker has revived the RAS Press in honor of that notable anniversary with its first publication in twenty years: “The Black Abbot of Puthuum” by Clark Ashton Smith. This digitally produced edition is limited to 250 numbered copies. The tipped-in reproduction of the illustration by Finlay was ink-jet printed by McVicker. The papers are Mohawk 50/10 Matte and Curtis Flannel. The cover was letter-pressed printed by Lange.

The book sells for $49.95, but pre-publication subscribers are invited to take advantage of a 20% discounted price of $39.95 (plus 8.25% sales tax for California residents) prior to November 4.

“The Black Abbot of Puthuum” will debut at the 2007 World Fantasy Convention in Saratoga Springs, New York.

Copies of the prospectus for “The Black Abbot of Puthuum” which shows the typefonts, the inking, and the quality of the printing is now ready for mailing. It is printed upon the paper that will be used for the edition. Gratis copies will be mailed to subscribers this week.

A hardcopy of the Prospectus is free to anyone who requests one.
Inquiries may be directed to Terence McVicker at [email protected]

This book is forty-eight pages not counting the covers. The covers are soft-cover, letterpress printed, there is a reproduction of the Virgil Finlay artwork, and the book is handsewn.  The book is roughly 4.5 x 8.5. 

Pre-publication price is $39.95 including shipping. Checks are preferred and should be made out to:

Terence McVicker
1745 W. Kenneth Road
Glendale, California 91201-1451

You can also pay via Paypal to the email address [email protected]