The Eldritch Dark

The Sanctum of Clark Ashton Smith

Clark Ashton Smith wearing beret.

Clark Ashton Smith (1893-1961), perhaps best known today for his association with H.P Lovecraft and the Cthulhu Mythos, is in his own right a unique master of fantasy, horror and science-fiction. Highly imaginative, his genre-spanning visions of worlds beyond, combined with his profound understanding of the English language, have inspired an ever -increasing legion of fans and admirers.

For most of his life, he lived in physical and intellectual isolation in Auburn, California (USA). Predominantly self-educated with no formal education after grammar school, Smith wore out his local library and delved so deeply into the dictionary that his richly embellished, yet precise, prose leaves one with the sense that they are in the company of a true master of language.

Though Smith primarily considered himself a poet, having turned to prose for the meager financial sum it rewarded, his prose might best be appreciated as a "fleshed" out poetry. In this light, plot and characters are subservient to the milieu of work: a setting of cold quiet reality, which, mixed with the erotic and the exotic, places his work within its own unique, phantasmagoric genre. While he also experimented in painting, sculpture, and translation, it is in his written work that his legacy persists.

During his lifetime, Smith's work appeared commonly in the pulps alongside other masters such H.P. Lovecraft, Robert E. Howard, August Derleth, and E. Hoffmann Price and like many great artists, recognition and appreciation have come posthumously. In recent decades though, a resurgence of interest in his works has lead to numerous reprintings as well as scholarly critiques.

The Eldritch Dark is a site to facilitate both scholars and fans in their appreciation and study of Clark Ashton Smith and his works.

Last 5 Eldritch Words Discussion Forum posts:

31 Aug, 2015 4:39AM by thespookfish

“This is great, thank you for your contribution!

Yes, it really comes down to the fact that adaptation, even in the meaning of the word, requires change, and that an adaptation is an interpretation (or reinterpretation) by a reader and nothing more (can you have an 'official' adaptation, is that even possible?).

I think a reliance on… ”

29 Aug, 2015 11:49PM by K.A. Opperman

“I for one am glad that 3 of them will become available next year!… ”

29 Aug, 2015 4:54AM by Jojo Lapin X

“Why is this spread out over three years? Why not release all of them at once?… ”

28 Aug, 2015 6:09PM by Geoffrey

“Here they come!

Here are the announced publication dates for each PAPERBACK volume:

Volume One: The End of the Story—September 2015

Volume Two: The Door to Saturn—January 2016

Volume Three: A Vintage from Atlantis—May 2016

Volume Four: The Maze of the Enchanter—September 2016

Volume Five: The Last Hieroglyph—January 2017

The Miscellaneous Writings of Clark Ashton Smith—May 2017

link … ”

27 Aug, 2015 4:41PM by Ancient History

“My starting point is that film adaptations of Lovecraft are generally of poor quality or badly recieved (however, please feel free to debate this).
I'll debate this. It is generally true that straight adaptations are rare, and critical reception is generally lukewarm, but Re-Animator (1985) has been hailed as a black comedy classic, and other… ”

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