So, as part of my research for my little essay, I've spent - oodles. I seriously don't count receipts for this stuff, but I've picked up a handful of Arkham House first editions, at least 80% of the Chaosium Call of Cthulhu line, most of R. Alain Evert's Strange Company nonsense, over a dozen volumes of letters from Hippocampus Press, Night Shade Books, Necronomicon Press, the R. E. H. Foundation, and Gerry de la Ree, not to mention enough fanzines and literary journals popular and obscure...anyway, there are some things I have not been able to lay hands on - in my personal collection, that is. Couple things I've gotten from interlibrary loan and whatnot. But what is left - not major stuff for the most part - I just find is frustratingly unavailable. Some of these things are kind of obscure too, so I thought there might be some interest.
H. P. Lovecraft: Letters to Robert Bloch (Necronomicon Press)
This is the frustrating one, because I've got every other letters chapbook NecroPress has ever put out, even the Letters to Robert Bloch Supplement, but this one remains obstinately off the online sales inventories - so far - though I know it's been posted before, for some obscene sums between $100-$200. At this point, I'm as interested in completing the collection as for the Lovecraft-lore it may contain.
Dear HPL and Dear August (REH Properties)
On the other hand, I don't feel bad about these two. They were both printed in less than fifty copies and apparently all of the published material is in The Collected Letters of Robert E. Howard. There is one copy of Dear August available for sale online, in "acceptable" condition at the insane price of $25,000 + shipping. To hell with that. Again, the reason is greater insight into a Mythos author's headspace, so the Collected Letters is actually a deal by that standard.
Winifred Virginia Jackson: Lovecraft's Lost Romance (The Strange Company)
I read this one at the library, but it's another one of those things that I know has appeared on the interwebs, just not anytime lately. It's a very brief (13 pages) treatment of Lovecraft's "relationship" with Winifred Virginia Jackson - I don't know if I take everything in it at face value, and nothing really came of the relationship, but its sort of an interesting-if-obscure item related to my essay anyway.
He Ate My Oatmeal, or, August Derleth As I Knew Him
I know almost nothing about this book except for its fascinating title and the fact that two copies - which, as far as I know, may be the only ones in existence - occupy space in library catalogs in Wisconsin. Derleth biographies are, as I've covered elsewhere, sort of uncommon and tend to present very different views of the man, so I'm curious what this would actually show.
Tentacle Death Trip
I don't know if this one has been printed yet, so it's on my watch list. I know it was finished in the middle of 2011, and due out in fall of 2011, but no announcement regarding it going up for sale has been forthcoming. It's supposedly Krall's first take at a Lovecraft-influenced novel, sort of like what Edward Lee has been doing. Krall's not a bad writer, so maybe this could be good.
The Major Works of H. P. Lovecraft: a Critical Commentary (Monarch)
I'm not actually on the lookout for this one, because I've read an excerpt in Whispers and have a good idea of the contents, and its lack of availability is probably due to a lack of being a good work more than anything else.
The Fantasy Commentator
Moderately obscure 'zines from the 40s are hard to find, yeah. No real surprise there. The issues I'm interested in are mainly the ones where people were first arguing whether or not HPL had syphilis, because while I have the beginning and end of that argument, the early middle part is still a bit obscure. Not that this is a hugely important or necessary thing, but I just thought I'd put it out there to make the list complete.