Saturday, April 12, 2014


With the release of volume 4 of the Lance Star: Sky Ranger pulp anthology series, we sat down with some of the Honorary Sky Rangers involved with this new release. Without further ado, please welcome to the hangar, authors Andrew Salmon, Jim Beard, and Bobby Nash, plus Airship 27 Productions publisher, Ron Fortier.

And on with the questions...

What is it about characters like Lance Star and the Sky Rangers that draws you to writing/publishing (and reading) their adventures?

Andrew Salmon
Andrew Salmon - Cool planes! Seriously, Lance and the Sky Rangers have it all. They are a great team and the format allows writers to take them just about anywhere, put them in any situation and use any and every type of action plot. The possibilities are endless - as the tales in the 4 volumes demonstrate. As I had never written an air pulp yarn before, I leapt at the chance to tackle Lance and crew.

Jim Beard - For me, it's the thrill of flying, or the the kind of flying THEY do. I like flying on big ol' modern jets, but that bare-knuckle, seat-of-the-pants flying that Lance and his fellow airmen pull off is like science fiction to me...and that's what's so attractive about it. Plus, Lance can get into all kinds of WEIRD stuff, too, which is an extra-added bonus. What's not to love?

Jim Beard
Bobby Nash - I am drawn to the larger than life adventures the Sky Rangers get themselves into each and every story. The planes are a blast to create and I get a thrill writing aerial battles. Those are the best. I’ve written more Lance star: Sky Ranger stories than anyone and I just can’t get enough. I love these characters and am always thrilled at the opportunity to revisit them.

Ron Fortier – I’ve always been an aviation buff and especially loved any comic book or pulp that dealt with flying.  As a kid I devoured BLACKHAWK from D.C. and their ENEMY ACE series.  When I discovered the old pulp classics, I was immediately drawn to the likes of Bill Barnes, Dusty Ayers and G-8 & His Battle Aces.  It’s no surprise when we started up our publishing house it was christened Airship 27
Bobby Nash

What has your experience been like working on this book?

Andrew Salmon - My tale proved to be quite a challenge albeit a worthwhile one. The research was a ton of fun. Writing the tale wound up being more difficult than I thought it would be but, ultimately, I'm happy with the result. Getting Lance and crew into tight situations then trying to figure a way out for them was the order of the day as I cranked out the tale. I enjoyed the process of writing the tale and being associated with the other great contributors to the book. It's been a treat adding a chapter to Lance lore!

Ron Fortier
Jim Beard - I thought at first it might be daunting to jump in with such a well-established character like Lance and in his fourth volume, but I really wanted to be part of it so I headed into it and found that the story seemed to come out of me fairly naturally. I was very lucky to be allowed to set down a part of Lance's past that hadn't been fully explored before, and I sincerely hope that his fans accept it into the canon and enjoy how it acts as the linchpin for the entire story.

Bobby Nash - Fun. For my story in this volume, I decided to do something a little bit different. My previous Sky Ranger tales have all been rooted in reality, albeit a pulpy one. This time out I decided to unleash the sci fi writer side of my brain and put Lance and the boys in a situation outside their usual comfort zone. Once I had the idea of a pterodactyl vs. an airplane there was no going back.

Ron Fortier – Both pure pleasure and sheer frustration.  Pleasure as all the stories and art we assembled in this volume are simply fantastic. There’s not a bad story or poor illustration anywhere in this volume. Frustration, as ever, in how bloody long it took us to get it out. Sadly, when you are working with multiple creators, these things happen all the time and you are at the mercy of people’s schedules.  When that last piece of art came in to complete the volume, I pretty much danced a jig.  Of course, now comes the challenge of planning Vol 5.  Ha.

Tell us a bit about your story in Lance Star: Sky Ranger Vol. 4.

Andrew Salmon - In "The Devil's Arm Gambit", Lance and the Sky Rangers
head to the desert to help out an old friend of Buck Tellonger's. The air service the guy is running has fallen on some rather sudden hard times. They soon learn that nothing is quite what it appears to be and, before you know it, they are in the middle of a dastardly threat that jeopardizes the country.

Jim Beard - "Black Cloud Ace" is all about choices, those important times in our lives when we're presented with a choice and whatever path we choose will shape our destiny. The story begins with Lance testing an experimental jet - based on the real-life prototypical jets of that time period - and a strange black cloud that looms large in his path. Once he goes through it, nothing will ever be quite the same for our hero ever again as he takes a cold hard look at himself and a particular choice he's made in the past.

Bobby Nash - “Ring of Fire” sees Lance Star and his Sky Rangers journey to an island inside the mysterious Ring of Fire, a circular series of volcanic islands in the South Pacific. They are there to deliver supplies and evacuate all non-essential personnel off the island, which they discover upon their arrival is actually a volcano in the stages of pre-eruption. Complicating matters are stubborn scientists, Nazi agents, and prehistoric beasts that should not exist. All in all, another day at the office for America’s Air Ace.

Tell us a bit about Lance Star: Sky Ranger Vol. 4.

Ron Fortier - Well, as is obvious, it continues the high flying adventures of aviation ace and genius inventor Lance Star, who owns his own airfield in New York and from there offers his services and those of his flight team to the government and private contractors.  In this collection, Lance & Co. find a hidden Nazis military base in the South Pacific, battle prehistoric flying monsters and even uncover a plot to assassinate the President of the Unite States.  All in a days work for Lance Star & his Sky Rangers.

Bobby Nash - Lance Star: Sky Ranger Volume 4 continues the grand pulp tradition that Ron and I, along with the rest of the Airship 27 crew, started way back with the first volume in this series. We’re telling fun stories that I hope will entertain and delight readers of all ages.

Where can readers learn more about you and your work?

Andrew Salmon - The best bet is my amazon page. As everything I've had published is available there for Kindle and in print, it really is the place to find out what I've been up these last few years:

Jim Beard - Folks can visit my Amazon Author Page (please leave me some reviews!) and say "hi" over at my Facebook page.

If they're really brave, they can check out my Sgt. Janus Spirit-Blog here.

Bobby Nash - The easiest place to keep up with me and information on my new and previously released work is at I’m also all over social media. You can find me on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, my Amazon Author Page, and all over the web. I also run the official Lance star: Sky Ranger website, which you can find at

Where can readers learn more about Airship 27 and available titles?

Ron Fortier - Although the majority of our books are available at Amazon, pulp fans should check out our on-line site to see ALL OUR TITLES.  Here’s the link.
As ever we thank them for their support.

Official Airship 27 Press Release:

Airship 27 Productions announces the release of its newest pulp anthology.  Rev up those Pratt-Whitney engines, pull back on the stick and prepare for take-off, as LANCE STAR – SKY RANGER gets ready to soar into the clouds in this, his fourth volume of high flying adventures.

Once again its time to join America’s aviation ace, Lance Star and his faithful team; Buck Tellonger, Cy Hawkins, Jim Nolan and Red Davis as they fly into four brand new hair-raising tales.  From discovering a hidden Nazis base on lost South Seas Island inhabited by prehistoric monsters to foiling an assassination attempt on President Roosevelt, the Sky Rangers travel globe tackling danger wherever they go.

The Lance Star – Sky Ranger series follows in the grand tradition of popular pulp favorites and Dusty Ayers, Bill Barnes, G-8 & His Flying Aces and dozens of other winged warriors of the clouds.

“When you’re company name is Airship 27 Productions,” says Managing Editor Ron Fortier, “you’d better believe we have a real love of flying heroes and Lance Star-Sky Ranger is at the top of that list.”

So goose your fuel lines, spin the props of your Skybolts and Skeeter and prepare yourself for classic pulp action.  Writers Bobby Nash, Sean Taylor, Andrew Salmon and Jim Beard have delivered a quartet of fast paced, high soaring stories to keep you buckled up tight.

This volume features a cover by popular graphic artist, Felipe Echavarria with interior illustrations by Warbirds of Mars’ own Scott “Doc” Vaughn.


LANCE STAR: SKY RANGER VOL. 4 is now available for purchase at the following:
Amazon (paperback)
Barnes and Noble (paperback)
CreateSpace (paperback)
Amazon (Kindle)
Airship 27 Hangar (ebook)

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