The First and Only Weekly Online Fanzine Devoted to the Life and Works of Edgar Rice Burroughs
Since 1996 ~ Over 15,000 Webpages in Archive
Volume 0510
Jasoom - Tarzana - Africa - Pellucidar
BarsoomSasoomVanah - LunaAmtor - Cosoom
The Many Worlds of
Edgar Rice Burroughs Signature
"The master of imaginative fantasy adventure...
...the creator of Tarzan and...
...the 'grandfather of science-fiction'"
A full-length novel in 16 Chapters
At the Core of Mars
Seth Kallen Deitch
An imaginative complex tale which
deals with the lives of familiar immortal heroes ~
the driving forces behind their heroism ~
and the grand plan behind ERB's universe.

Art by Paul Privitera
In Early 1999, the Usenet group, alt.fantasy.e-r-burroughs, was still active and I was in need of an exercise of some sort to break a rather persistent writer's block.  I had mulled over some ideas for a Burroughs pastiche and mentioned them in the group where I was encouraged to develop them. As a result of that I foolishly announced that I would write a short novel presenting a chapter every week at my website. That novel was to be titled "At the Core of Mars" and outside of that, I knew very little about how the story was to proceed. I hoped only to amuse the participants of the group.

The Tale I ended up telling dealt with the lives of immortal heroes and the driving forces behind their heroism and the grand plan behind ERB's universe. In attempting to do this, on violates a cardinal rule behind pulp writing. For a pulp character, "happily ever after" isn't really an option, because you need the ongoing tension and conflict for his next adventure. In the case of the great heroes of the Burroughs pantheon, this became especially problematic. John Carter became the center of his adopted world. The Ape-man became a major celebrity and one of the world's wealthier men. The existence of  Pellucidar, the world within our world, had become well known to the general public by the World War II era. Certain persons on Earth were in contact with John Carter on Barsoom. Humanity clearly stood on the brink of a new era of exploration and colonization. The great tragedy of history then was surely when an attempted mission to Barsoom went off course and inadvertently discovered the dying world of Vah-Nah and made the Kalkars aware of the riches of Earth. 

Thankfully, knowledge of the existence of civilization in Pellucidar and on Amtor and Barsoom was successfully hidden from them. The Kalkars occupied Earth and were ultimately repelled leaving our world to its rightful inhabitants. Like the natives of all occupied lands, the natives had absorbed some of the culture and language of their conquerors.

I wanted to show the future of that world. What follows is that future.

-S. K. Deitch   October 3rd 2000
At the Core of Mars
The Adventure Begins
CHAPTER 1: A Prince of Earth
CHAPTER 2: The Doorway
CHAPTER 3: Jomads
CHAPTER 4: The Open Sea
CHAPTER 5: An Instant of Night
CHAPTER 6: Geography
CHAPTER 7: The Natives
CHAPTER 8: Things I Didn't Know Were Happening
CHAPTER 9: The Troubled Sky
CHAPTER 10: Several Views
    I. The MasterMind ~ II. Pellucidar ~ III. Crisis Management 
    ~ IV. The Walls of Greater Helium ~ V. In the Sun's Embrace ~ VI. Borneo
CHAPTER 11: Meeting Savjoda:
CHAPTER 12: A Portable Princess
CHAPTER 13: Escape on Dhaimira
CHAPTER 14: The Tube
CHAPTER 15: Morbus and the Roads
CHAPTER 16: Punishment  ~ CONCLUSION

See the complete text-only version in one location
ERBzine 0510a

The Author
Seth Kallen Deitch
Seth Kallen Deitch

Seth Kallen Deitch was born in New York in the year 1956. His upbringing was unconventional and his nonconformist attitude apparent from an early age. He did poorly in school and is largely, though broadly, self educated.

He was encouraged in artistic pursuits. His father is animated film maker, Gene Deitch, his eldest brother is celebrated comic book artist, Kim Deitch. The atmosphere for creativity prevailed in young Seth’s household.

Mr. Deitch first became aware of the work of Edgar Rice Burroughs at the age of ten when he read “Jungle Tales of Tarzan”. For the rest of his life, he would read and re-read the Burroughs adventure novels, gaining something new from them with each reading.

In 1993, having previously passed through periods of concentrated work in music, publishing and various of the plastic arts, Mr. Deitch turned his attention to writing as a form of self expression.  His first work was a novel deeply influenced by the works of Edgar Rice Burroughs entitled “The Land Beneath the World” that told the tale of contact with a lost civilization in the Antarctic.  He followed it up with two sequels. The first two are now combined as a single book, “Bromfkidor”, which is available online at The third, “Beneath Bromfkidor” as well as a bound version of “Bromfkidor”, is published by Xenolite Press.

Since that time, Mr. Deitch has completed only one more novel-length book, “Adrift” and various short stories, some of which are collected in the anthologies “Falsehoods” and “Apocrypha”. He is currently engaged in writing a novel with the working title, “Singer of Songs”.

Seth Kallen Deitch resides in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Copyright 1999 S.K. Deitch

Volume 0510

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