Monthly Archives: March 2017

The Paperback Fanatic #36

TPF36_500Justin Marriott publishes digest magazines: The Paperback Fanatic, Pulp Horror, The Sleazy Reader, and Men of Violence! And he’s working on a new title called Hot Lead, dedicated to westerns.

He recently sat still long enough for a fascinating interview with Paul Bishop. Among others things he spoke about his publishing process:

“My system is to solicit pre-orders for a new publication stating a deadline for when I go to print. I then print almost the same numbers as pre-ordered, paying the printers to mail them out. This means I’m not out of pocket during the gap between paying the printers and receiving orders, nor am I sitting on boxes of back issues.”

The Paperback Fanatic #36
Fanatical Letters
“Us or Them” by Tom Tesarek
“Gold Medal Classic Murder Trials” by Rob Matthews
“Arizona; A Book Odyssey” by Tom Tesarek
“The Tale of Two Dark Angels” by Jim O’Brien
“Artists Assemble 5; Screaming Metal”
“The Pantastic Saint” by Graham Andrews
“Thud and Blunder”
“Get Your Motor Running” by Paul Bishop
“The Discovery at Red Hook” by Jack Chalker

100 pages, ~6” x 8” (A5-size)
The Paperback Fanatic website

John Dickson Carr and Cabin B-13

ellery_queens_mystery_194405Stories from Suspense Magazine #1 Spring 1951

From the story’s introduction: “Numbering its audience in the millions today, the CBS radio-television program series Suspense for a number of years has ranked as one of the finest dramatic programs on the air. It has brought to perfection a new type of high-tension presentation—in tune with our time, in harmony with modern concepts of gripping entertainment.

“In each issue, the magazine Suspense will present one of the distinguished scripts which have made broadcasting history. The initial choice, Honeymoon Terror, was originally given over the CBS network in November, 1943, under the title Cabin B-13, starring Margo and Phillip Dorn.”

“Cabin B-13” was one of the most popular episodes of Suspense, it was rerun in November 1943, but its original broadcast was on March 16, 1943. Even the script had an earlier printing, in Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine May 1944.

Image from Galactic Central.

Mailing label libel

eqmm_3-4_2014Unfortunately, far too many digest magazines come with mailing labels attached. For collectors, they’re unsightly intact or stripped off like the pitiful copy of EQMM shown here.

Dealers will sometimes use a product like Super Safe® Stamp Lift Fluid and carefully remove them. If you’re buying on eBay, look at the pictures carefully. The Lift Fluid does a good job, but it can’t remove every trace of the adhesive. If you look closely you’ll see two strips where it was, with a light stain that bleeds through to the inside front cover as well.

Between the label or a trace of adhesive, I much prefer the trace. The fluid does not seems to leave any discoloration where it was applied, however, I don’t know if this remains true after a few years have passed. Time will tell.


Arthur C. Clarke: Prelude to Space

gn3Galaxy Science Fiction Novels #3 from an excerpt from Steve Carper’s “The Galaxy Science Fiction Novels” from TDE4.

[H.L.] Gold hurriedly filled the slot with the existential opposite of super-science, an original novel set in a recognizable future. It had everything—a rising young star as its author, cutting-edge contemporary subject matter, a realistic style that eschewed Gosh-wow, an astronomical cover that for once indicated the lure of the contents, the true first edition of the first novel ever published by a name destined to achieve world renown. Arthur C. Clarke’s Prelude to Space (#3) fell into Gold’s lap for the least likely possible reason: everybody else in the field had rejected it.”

Opening lines to the novel:
“For five miles straight as an arrow, the gleaming metal track lay along the face of the desert. It pointed to the northwest across the dead heart of the continent and to the ocean beyond. Over this land, once the home of the aborigines, many strange shapes had risen, roaring, in the last generation. The greatest and strangest of them all lay at the head of the launching track along which it was to hurtle into the sky.”

Theodore Sturgeon’s Ghost of a Chance

Stories from Suspense Magazine #1 Spring 1951

In Theodore Sturgeon’s “Ghost of a Chance,” a jealous spirit plays havoc on behalf of his living object of affection, on any and all males she may encounter casually or otherwise. The premise could have gone north or south, but in Sturgeon’s capable hands it’s a witty, engaging ghost story with a satisfying end.

The story was originally titled “The Green-Eyed Monster” when it appeared in Unknown Worlds June 1943.

PPFSZT! Vol. 2 #1

ppfszt!1Jim Main has published a special digest-sized issue of his long-running fanzine, PPFSZT!, honoring the late Tim Corrigan and Wade Busby, both fixtures of the small press scene for decades.

Contributors include Anthony Gray, Mike Maloney, John Lambert, Jim Siergey, Mike McDonald, Ron McCain, Floydman Sumner, Doc Boucher, Rock Baker, Jeff Austin, Jack Bertram, Kevin Duncan, Michael Neno, Jamie Chase, Steve Shipley, John Peter Britton, Carl Taylor and Carol Corrigan.

Available in print and PDF formats, contact Jim Main at Main Enterprises for ordering information.

Jennie and the Light Brown Cure

Stories from Suspense Magazine #1 Spring 1951

The curative properties of music are amplified by the Dynamic Sound Ray Case in “Jennie and the Light Brown Cure” by Alexander Samalman, a light-hearted science-fictiony romp. Samalman was editor of Thrilling Wonder Stories, Startling Stories and several other titles for the Ned Pines publishing empire.

Here’s what Suspense had to say about the author:
“A protégé of the illustrious Frank Harris, Samalman can turn out sly, biting satire quite worthy of his master—as this story demonstrates. Once renowned chiefly for his sophisticated love stories appearing in such magazines as Smart Set, in latter years he has been turning out equally sophisticated science-fantasy stories—most of which, in one way or another, have crept into the anthologies.”

Fantasy & Science Fiction Mar/Apr 2017

F&SF_3-4_2017_500Fantasy & Science Fiction Vol. 132 No. 3 and 4, aka #730, Mar/Apr 2017

“Driverless” by Robert Grossbach
“The Toymaker’s Daughter” by Arundhati Hazra
“Spacemail Only” by Ruth Berman (verse)
“Ten Half-Pennies” by Matthew Hughes
Books To Look For by Charles de Lint
Musing on Books by Michelle West
“The Man Who Put the Bomp” by Richard Chwedyk (Saurs series)
“A Green Silk Dress and a Wedding-Death” by Cat Hellisen
Science: Robots in Your Pants by Pat Murphy & Paul Doherty
Films by Kathi Maio
“Miss Cruz” by James Sallis
“The Avenger” by Albert E. Cowdrey
“Daisy” by Eleanor Arnason
Coming Attractions
Curiosities by David Langford

Publisher: Gordon Van Gelder
Editor: C.C. Finlay
Assistant Publishers: Barbara J. Norton, Keith Kahla
Assistant Editors: Robin O’Connor, Stephen L. Mazur, Lisa Rogers
Contests Editor: Carol Pinchefsky
Film Editor: Harlan Ellison
Cover: Bryn Barnard (The Man Who Put the Bomp)
Cartoons: Arthur Masear, Nick Downes
258 pages, $8.99 on newsstands until May 1, 2017
Fantasy & Science Fiction website

New Crime Digest


Something wonderful in the world of crime digest magazines is happening right now. Rick Ollerman and Eric Campbell have teamed up to bring us Down & Out: The Magazine.

Debut: June 2017
Print: ~5” x 8”
Digital: Yes
Frequency: Quarterly

Issue one will include a new Reed Farrel Coleman story starring detective Moe Prager, a classic reprint, a cover by Peter Rozofsky, and much more. For more information see the official Down & Out announcement.

Criswell Predicts: Fate #6

fate_7_1949In the fourth issue of Fate, with Criswell’s first appearance, editor Ray Palmer writing as Robert N. Webster, promised the iconic prophet’s predictions would appear every month. But that prediction proved faulty. The column, “Criswell Predicts,” only appeared four times in Fate. The second, in the issue show here from July 1949, Vol. 2 #2, aka whole number #6.