A first look at ‘Famous Monsters in Film Land’ magazine

Welcome again to The Green Castle!

I always enjoy finding out about new sources of information and stories relating to Speculative Fiction, and I don’t want to always be asking the Scriptorium staff to get things for me. They’re very helpful staff, but all those manuscripts they copy in painstaking detail, plus special commissioned works, and maintenance work on existing collection materials…well, they do turn out to be very time-consuming jobs and I freely confess I don’t always have the scribes’ legendary patience. 🙂 I also don’t want to just sit in a state-room all day or make do with a stroll along the castle’s battlements for a bit of exercise. Every so often I love to get out of the castle, way past the gates and moat, and look for new things myself. 🙂

Oh yes, and another thing – I’m still looking for a new Chief Entertainer for the castle, or even a visiting town crier. So the “hear ye, hear ye!” part will be done by yours truly.

Today I’m going to say a little bit about a new source I’ve found, called Famous Monsters in Film Land. One of the guild masters in the nearest big town knows someone who knows someone in a different era a long time in the future, and has a way (which, in all fairness, he can never describe for fear of suspicion of illegal sorcery; in fact, I can’t even give the guild master’s name) of getting hold of curious printed objects called… ‘magazines’, which are full of news, stories, pictures, personal ‘tricks of the trade’ descriptions of how things are done to tell stories, etc. To an amateur collector of some independent means, like myself, these, er, magazines are absolute gems!

In Issue #254/March-April 2011 of this ‘Famous Monsters…’ magazine, major features that include:

  • A tribute to an extremely significant actor in horror films/writer/story-teller/society figure/mentor/art dealer&collector, who had a 55-year career in films: Vincent Price
  • Interviews with two different artist specialising in computer-based digital effects -why, it seems almost like sorcery!
  • Feature article on a television (another curiosity for me to explore!) series called ‘Being Human’ – involving a ghost, a werewolf and a vampire sharing an apartment  -an unlikely premise for a comedy, perhaps, but it seems to have worked very well
  • An original short story called ‘Wormhole’, by a Max Claymore
  • Interview-based feature about horror/science fiction graphic artist and film-maker Larry Blamire
  • A droll column-style piece about the columnist intense dislike of ‘re-envisioned’ versions of classic films and in this column he focuses his dislike on the 1998 version of ‘Psycho’.
  • Other assorted content/topics include: zombies, a privately-run wax museum that has been going for past 45 years, fan mail and editorial column.


Well, dear visitors and castle staff, I think I’ll stop the description there and not give away any more of the magazine staff’s efforts to offer fresh content and surprises. I can recommend the publication, and future and past issues of it, for just about anyone who is either already interested in the matter of monsters in film, horror films in general and/or would like to find out more. The guild master told me it cost AUD$27.95 – I don’t remember what that was in silver coins of my realm, but I count it money fairly spent, for the entertainment and interest value and possible pathways to a whole new interest within speculative fiction, that this issue has given me.

And yes, my own castle’s dungeons have been thoroughly cleaned out and offer no tempting hiding places for ghouls, witches etc. 🙂

Maybe I’ll go and ask the Scriptorium Assistant about our subscriptions budget for next year… 🙂

Best regards and a ghoul-free night to all, from yours truly at The Green Castle,

‘timatgreencastle’/Resident Nobleman


4 thoughts on “A first look at ‘Famous Monsters in Film Land’ magazine

  1. Sire, it would honour me to be delegated to the position of Visiting Town Crier or Entertainer. I used to be able to juggle three balls, but I believe these skills have lapsed to being able to juggle one ball. I can also sing when pinched and can dance when drunk. What did you have in mind as far as entertainment goes? I can squawk and shout and read aptly. Perhaps I am better suited to the position of Visiting Town Crier.

    P.S. I envy you your moat. I am depleted of such luxuries in my lodgings.

    Joanna, wench, secret writer/actor/singer, seeking Knight in Shining Armour

    • Greetings, good woman Joanna!
      I thank you for your application and will consider it with due attention.

      A particular and special application has, I should tell you, already been submitted for the Chief Entertainer position. There are certain factors (which cannot be divulged) relating to the mysterious and sudden end of the former Minstrel’s service. Enough for now to say that ‘Partanbrask’ is not as widely nor as deeply missed as his vanity would have led him to assume. 🙂

      However, the position of Visiting Town Crier is, I am told, still a position that is available – at least on a part-time basis. [Note: full-time Criers are generally on lengthy retainers paid by various guilds and there are many more conditions and training requirements attached to the position] Also, there may well be need for more than one such new Crier on market weekends, major holy days and state dinners. Part-time Criers receive a generous honorarium for each day or occasion of service, plus full board -including dinner and breakfast next day at the castle, if their daily/occasional duties finish beyond an hour for reasonable return to the nearby big town or their own dwellings outside the castle. I hope those terms are agreeable.

      Pray be sure I will send a messenger ere long, with fresh news.

      Regards from The Resident Nobleman at The Green Castle.

      • Resident Nobleman,
        Thank you for accepting my application for the position of Town Crier at The Green Castle. I harken for good tidings. I await your messenger to deliver your parchment. I trust he will travel safely by horse. May your night candle burn brightly, kind sir.
        Joanna, sturdy in voice, infrequent traveller.
        St Patrick’s Day is on Thursday. Perhaps your castle could be put to good use for Irish frivolities. Where is your castle located? I do not wish to fall off the edge of the earth while travelling to yon abode.

  2. Greetings, Joanna of the infrequent travels,

    Your enthusiasm for the part-time Visiting Town Crier jobs is moste commendable. Confidential replies (and any additional information deemed necessary, including specific notes on how to get to the castle) to successful applicant/s will certainly be given secure and speedy transport.

    In general terms: ‘The Green Castle’ is one full day of hard walking from the big market town called Falrisk, which in turn is approximately two days’ hard walk from the monastery that is home to that monk I have clashed with on the subject of supply of apprentices. Tavern keepers and uniformed Sheriff’s Men in Falrisk are both reliable sorts of people to ask for directions for getting out of town and on the correct path to the castle. You can, of course, also ask a Town Crier -they are dressed in the green, yellow & silver robes of a Permanent Town Crier (the ones retained by the guilds). However, I recommend you ask only as a casual traveller or pilgrim, rather than an applicant for a Crier’s position. Word of your motive would spread quickly and, while they are good, sturdy fellows on the whole, they may not feel compelled to give genuine or kind advice if they are sponsoring a friend or patron’s friend for a Crier position of some kind. That would apply to any potential applicant, man or woman, so I hope you will not think harshly of them after my caution.

    I have heard of such a feast day/anniversary in a distant realm – known, as you say, as St Patricks Day -from the talk of various travellers and some castle with distant family connections. So, while not having personal links myself, I do most heartily want to maintain a convivial atmosphere in the castle. To that aim, I have decided to host an informal evening banquet-party for the occasion and have given various castle staff some additional spare time within past few days, to help prepare the foods, decorations, games, etc. A part of the Main Inner Yards of the castle have been roped off to serve as the banquet area.

    You are most welcome to attend the banquet as one of my guests, and stay overnight in one of the guest chambers. 🙂 If you can get to Falrisk before lunch tomorrow (start of lunch is marked by 12 strikes of the clock on town’s biggest church), I will have a fast horse and escort-rider sent to town for you. Please go to the front of the Sheriff’s building to meet the horse and rider. I believe you indicated on a recent scroll that you can ride? A horse will be faster than even a very good waggon. The rider, travelling with you on their own horse, can help carry any bag/trunk you may require for a visit of 2-3 days.

    If you wish to see more of the castle moat you recently referred to, perhaps even try fishing in it, and see some new garden areas that have just been completed, then a guided tour can be arranged – with my compliments, of course – for the morning after the banquet. Before you start riding, simply let someone in the Sheriff’s building know you would like the tour and that I know you as a guest. The Sheriff’s people will be happy to send quick word to the castle and it will reach us before you do. The Sheriff and I can guarantee it. 🙂

    I do hope you will be able to visit the castle for the party.

    Respectfully yours, Resident Nobleman at ‘The Green Castle’

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