Monday, May 17, 2010

Double Action Detective, Issue No. 6, Spring 1957

What we have here are the front and back covers of Double Action Detective from 1957. You'd think I'd get used to it, but even after all these years, I'm amazed at how prolific Robert Silverberg was in the late '50s. He must have been writing two or three short stories a day plus a novel on the weekends. On a typewriter. I find it incredible. And he wasn't writing just one kind of story. Science fiction, crime, erotica, westerns, you name it and he was writing it.

And I love the back cover ad. What man wouldn't want his own portable bar, one that "adds class to every gathering, and points up the cleverness of its proud owner." And for only $4.98. Plus 63 cents postage, of course. Those were the days!


Ed Gorman said...

I have my Mac set up on my bar. Yessir $4.98 plus postage in 1958 and it's still standing upright. :) I don't know if you've ever read Silverberg's memoir of writing porn but in 58 or so he started doing a couple soft core novels a month in addition to his sf and detective and men's magazine stuff. What's equally amazing is that as "product" just about all of it was readable and some of it was really good.

That really is a great ad, Bill. I never had much class until I got that bar. It improved my whole life. In fact it was almost like a religious experience.

Double Action published some early (and good) Ed Hoch stories, too.

Unknown said...

I'm sure that your bachelor "pad" was much improved when you got that bar. How could anybody resist at that price?

I've read Silverberg's memoir a couple of times, and each time I'm more amazed at what he could do. He wrote a soft core novel the first week of the month, did his own stuff for two weeks, and wrote another novel the last week of the month. The mind boggles.

Todd Mason said...

Ed Hoch was always careful to note that he was a Robert Lowndes "discover" and wrote for the Lowndes Health Knowledge magazines in the '60s, too (with even less of an editorial budget).

I note that Peter Norcross has only these credits in the FMI, so that I wonder if PN isn't Silverberg as well (there was a well-known 18th Cen CE PN, after all):

Vengeance Vigil (ss) Famous Western Apr 1956
Silent Town (na) Double Action Western Jun 1956
Red-Headed Slaymate (ss) Fast Action Detective and Mystery Stories Jan 1957
Phantom Hooves (ss) Double Action Western Feb 1957
Frame That Dame! (na) Double-Action Detective Stories Spr 1957
King of the Range (n.) Double Action Western Apr 1957
Renegade’s Stepson (nv) Real Western Stories Feb 1958
Make it Legal (ss) Real Western Stories Jun 1958
Man in the Sky (ss) Real Western Stories Dec 1958
Violent Land (ss) Real Western Stories Feb 1959
Plenty Mean (ss) Real Western Stories Jun 1959
A Dash of Thief-Catching (ss) Real Western Stories Feb 1960
The Flame Maiden (ss) Man Junior Dec 1969

Unknown said...

I wondered the same thing you did, Todd, and I, too, checked the FMI. I thought maybe it would give the info if Norcross was a pen name, but no such luck. I didn't find a listing for Norcross in Hawk's Authors' Pseudonyms, either.

Michael E. Stamm said...

"Wood-grain Multi-Flute fiber-board"--that is, corrugated cardboard. Classy indeed! Probably not too different from the cardboard "full-sized" submarines and rocket ships offered to kids in the back pages of pulps and comic books at a slightly later date...