Wednesday, April 4, 2012

I've Gone Over to the Dark Side

I'm now buying pulps in bulk. I just completed a purchase of 39 issues of LOVE STORY MAGAZINE.

I now have 78 issues which, considering that the magazine ran every week for oh, around thirty years from 1921 to 1954, is really a drop in the bucket.

I do have valid reasons for buying all of these. I'm researching the life of Daisy Bacon, the longtime editor of the magazine, and I'm fascinated by the fact that this magazine was so spectacularly popular - in the early 1930s its circulation was 600,000 - every WEEK. Another reason I bought these is because, like a lot of fiction magazines from that era, one of LOVE STORY's practices was to run longer novels broken up in installments over 5 to 6 issues. So I've been wanting to build up uninterrupted runs so I could read these serials. It's not that easy when you're buying them piecemeal through places like eBay. I did buy quite a few last year at PulpFest - more on that in a minute.

A few months ago I contacted a dealer who I knew had a big inventory of LOVE STORYs. Believe it or not, this dealer has even MORE issues, but I had to have SOME restraint.

This purchase does illuminate the fact that the best way to buy pulps is to go to the conventions, like Windy City and Pulp Fest. There you meet these great dealers and you can buy in bulk, or whatever way you want to buy, because there are thousands of pulp magazines for sale in one place. It really beats trying to build a collection through eBay - that could take you centuries.

So, excuse me but I have to go. I've got some reading to do.

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9 comments:

Walker Martin said...

Only 1100 more issues to go. But seriously, attending the pulp conventions is the key to collecting large runs of your favorite magazine. There you will be able to make the necessary contacts and gather information about the magazines. Windy City Pulp Convention starts April 27 and the room will have around 140 tables.

But what I find to be most interesting is your research on Daisy Bacon. The results of your work will be new and groundbreaking. I'm looking forward to the finished book.

Deka Black said...

600.000 every week. That's incredible! Really really astounding (no pun intended). Good luck in your investigation ;)

Barry Traylor said...

Buying in bulk. Hmmmm, sounds like you are hanging around that Walker fella.
Seriously, although I do not do it much anymore it sure is a hoot to do it. I well remember the time I found almost 500 copies of Argosy from 1930 to 1939 at a local flea market. the other neat thing was they came from a woman who subscribed to the magazine and they were in A+ condition. The reason I know it was a woman that owned them is I found a couple of subscription renewal papers inside the mags.

Walker Martin said...

Barry, there is still hope for Laurie! Though she just announced that she obtained a big pile of pulps, she also just managed to sell 21 WILD WEST WEEKLY's. If you really hang around me too much, then there is no way in hell that you can bear to part with anything.

David Cranmer said...

I'm looking forward to reading your book on Daisy Bacon.

And enjoy the dark side research.

Richard R. said...

Happy Easter, Laurie! Hope you and the animals have a great day!

Laurie Powers said...

Thanks, Rick. Happy Easter to everyone!

Randy Vanderbeek said...

Just watch out for men in helmets claiming "I am your Father" :)

Anti Money Laundering said...

If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all.