Baseball and Football Pulp Fiction

Six Publishers, with a Directory of Stories, 1935–1957


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SKU: 9781476677576 Categories: , , , Tags: ,

About the Book

This first-ever volume focusing on sports pulp fiction devoted to America’s two most popular pastimes of the 1935–1957 era—baseball and football—provides extensive detail on authors, along with examination of key plots, themes, trends and categories. Commentary relates the works to real-life baseball and football of the period. The history of the genre is traced, beginning with the debut of Dime Sport (later renamed Dime Sports), the first magazine from a major publisher to provide competition for Street & Smith’s long-established Sport Story Magazine. Complementing the text is a complete catalog of fiction from the six major publishers who competed with S&S, also noting the cover themes for 1,054 issues.

About the Author(s)

Michelle Nolan has been a newspaper and magazine feature writer for more than 50 years. She received an Inkpot Award for her work as a comics and pop cultural historian and entrepreneur. She has written more than 12,000 published articles in newspapers and magazines along with contributions to dozens of books. She lives in Bellingham, Washington.

Bibliographic Details

Michelle Nolan

Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 228
Bibliographic Info: 60 photos (16 in color), bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2020
pISBN: 978-1-4766-7757-6
eISBN: 978-1-4766-3813-3
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface 1
Introduction 3
Part I. History of Baseball and Football in the Pulps  7
1. Pulp Baseball and Football Authors: The Top 75 and the Other ­400-Plus 8
2. William Campbell Gault’s Football 14
3. John D. MacDonald’s Football and Baseball 20
4. James Blish’s Versatility 28
5. Robert Silverberg’s Baseball 32
6. Michael Avallone’s Baseball 35
7. Duane Decker’s Baseball 39
8. The Unsung William R. Cox and T.W. Ford—Nearly 10 Percent of Pulp Sports 43
9. Girl Meets Boy 50
10. The Cover Artists and Themes 53
11. The Coming of Competition 60
12. The Competition Explodes 63
13. The Sports Pulp Publishers 66
14. The Phantom Issues and Oddities 72
15. Titillating Titles, ­Mind-Boggling Blurbs and Terrific Terms 76
16. Bushers in the Stories 80
17. Where Football and Baseball Numbers Prevailed 84
18. The Sports Plots Thicken 90
19. The Few Women in Pulp Baseball 94
20. High School Football 99
21. Crime on the Diamond 104
Between pages 108 and 109 are 8 color plates with 16 photographs
22. A Bonus (Baby) for 1950s Readers 109
23. A Bit of Baseball in College 113
24. Nice Pulp Guys Fade Away 116
25. Managers in the Press Box 120
26. Baseball on Early Television 126
27. Football’s Family Ways 129
28. Damn Yankees in the South 133
29. The Only Pulp Sports Reprint Title 137
30. ­Real-Life Heroes—Eddie Collins and Frank Frisch 140
Part II. Catalog of Pulp Baseball and Football from Six Publishers  145
Bibliography 207
Index 209