Pulps Pricings Sales Census: Tales of Magic and Mystery, and Mind Magic

TALES OF MAGIC and MYSTERY – Jan. 1928 sold recently on eBay for $84.00

“…the January 1928 (vol. 1, no. 2) issue of the rare pulp,



Tales of Magic and Mystery”, which was a short-lived competitor to “Weird Tales”.


The magazine was edited by Walter Gibson, future author of “The Shadow,” and he wrote most of the non-fiction articles to appear in the magazine.

Authors include Frank Owen.

Condition is good to very good; front cover has overall wear, with many creases, edge tears and light stains.

The spine is complete but stained (note that, as printed, the spine is blank).
Back cover is similar to the front, with some writing in pencil.
Paper is yellow and supple.

A respectable copy of a rare pulp.”

Authors: “Tomorrow’s Paper” by Charlton Lawrence Edholm (reprinted from BRIEF STORIES – Dec. 1924);
“The Yellow Pool” by Frank Owen (reprinted from BRIEF STORIES – Nov. 1923)
(this pseudonym by him, of his two, wasn’t prolific, but it’s worthy of note (with no comment, LoL): Hung Long Tom);

“The Black Pagoda” (Part 2 of 3)(reprinted from BRIEF STORIES – Aug. 1924);
“The Comic Mask” (reprinted from BRIEF STORIES – March 1924);

“The Temple of Fire” and “Houdini in Europe” were both by Walter B. Gibson as Anonymous;
“Number Magic” by Astro (which is another article by Gibson);
he also ghost wrote “A Burmese Adventure” as by Howard Thurston. All four are articles.
All 5 issues were edited by Gibson.

Bookery say: Scarce $100.00 – $250.00 – $500.00
It also says 4 pseudonyms by Gibson (I’m not sure that I would call anonymous articles as pseudonyms).

TALES OF MAGIC and MYSTERY – March 1928 sold recently on eBay for $536.01

“The indicative prices are based on the Bookery Guide so,

Contains the first appearance of H. P. Lovecraft’s Cool Air.



Pages white. Better than very good.”

Authors: “Cool Air” by H. P. Lovecraft (6 short pages);
“The Nerve Specialist” by Newton A. Fuessle  (6 pages)(reprinted from BRIEF STORIES – April 1924);

All the rest are articles of the 72 pages.
“Adventures of Astro I — The Unaccountable Disappearance of John Hudson” by Anon. (by Gelett Burgess)(short story “The Master of Mysteries” (Bobbs 1912) as “Missing John Hudson”;
“Further Famous Escapes of Harry Houdini” by Walter B. Gibson;
“Magic Pictorial” by Anon. (Gibson);
“Adventures in Mind-Reading” by Bernard Perry (Gibson);
“The Famous Japanese Decapitation Mystery” by Anon. (Gibson);
The Girl Who Was Buried Alive;  Howard Thurston (ghost written by Walter B. Gibson)

I’m not sure I could have paid $500 plus for a minor 6 page Lovecraft story.

MIND MAGIC – June 1931 (First Issue) sold recently on eBay for $54.00

Mind Magic” was a rare fantasy pulp, running for four issues in 1931.

MIND MAGIC - June 1931 (First Issue)

MIND MAGIC – June 1931 (First Issue)

It was published by the same publisher that put out the spicy pulp, “Paris Nights,” and many artists and authors worked for both.

This… is for the first issue, dated June 1931.

Authors include Manly Wade Wellman, better known for his work in “Weird Tales.”

Condition is fair; front cover has overall wear and creasing, as well as spine tape.

The back cover is a photocopy.

Paper is various degrees of tan (except for the middle 16 pages, which are printed on a higher quality paper and are off-white) but still supple, with a few tears.

While not in great shape, it’s tough to find in any condition.”

Authors: “Faithful Footsteps” by Manly Wade Wellman;
“The Black Art of Eric Hampt” by Frank Kenneth Young (only semi-prolific).
“In the Second Astral” (Part 1 of 4)(at 14 pages);
“From an Old Egyptian Tomb”;
“Don’t Take That Gun !” She Warned Them”;
“The Opened Door”;
“The Grey Mists Cleared and She Returned by the Power of Love” (2 pages)

Only 7 short stories from the 64 pages. The rest of the issue is taken up by 10 articles.

Bookery say: Scarce $80.00 – $200.00 – $400.00
(which is a bit more than some truly Rare and Very Rare Pulps, which also goes for TALES OF MAGIC and MYSTERY).

ENJOY PULPS – David Lee Smith




Pulps Pricings Sales Census: Flying Stories (Oct. and Dec. 1929)

FLYING STORIES – Oct. 1929 sold recently on eBay for $34.04FLYING STORIES - Oct. 1929

“Flying Stories” was a rare bedsheet pulp published by MacFadden, running for 20 issues between 1928 and 1930.

This… is for the October 1929 issue.

Authors include Frederick Nebel (with a serial installment of “The Scourge of the South Sea Skies”) and Laurence Donovan

Condition is fair; front cover has overall wear, creasing, tears and a small piece missing at the top.

The spine has portions missing.
The back cover is missing, and there’s a piece out of pages 95 and 96 which affects ads, but not any story text.
Paper is a higher quality paper than the usual pulp paper and is off-white and supple.

While not in great shape, it’s tough to find this title in any condition.”

The cover also looks like it has a tear through 1/2 to 3/4’s of the cover from the top mid-spine, moving right to the female aviator’s helmet, then moving south to the eagles’ wing. It also splits 1/4 way through into another tear heading up through the entire “F” in FLYING.

Bookery: “Scarce to Rare” $30.00 – $75.00 – $150.00

This is one of those Pulps mentioned in Bookery in which collectors have to grab whatever copy they can find, no matter the condition. You never know when another copy of the title will show or a particular issue.
The second series of 6 issues in 1930, put out by Good Story Magazines (with the same logo), is probably even more scarce being a ‘real’ Pulp.

This same copy is at Galactic Central, but the original owner took a lousy picture of it. This photograph was much better.

This issue has 5 short stories and 7 articles/columns/transcripts.

Authors: “The Death Jinx” (Part 1 of 3) by Edwin Vernon Burkholder (who wrote the 19 “Hook McGuire” series as George Allan Moffatt in The SHADOW);
“The Scourge of the South Sea Skies” by Frederick L. Nebel (Part 2 of 3)

Frederick L. Nebel (FictionMags says it’s a novel, but at only 6 pages that doesn’t seem possible, even being a bedsheet. Maybe they are adding all 3 parts of the serial together);
“His Fear of Being Afraid” by L. P. Holmes (who had a ton of stories in the Pulps);
“No Man’s Air” (Part 4 of 4) by Capt. J. I. Lawrence;

the 4 page manuscript “Grim Missiles from the Sky” is by Laurence Donovan;
the longest item in the issue is the 9 page “Flying Stories Told in Pictures”

Way back in March 2016 a much better Dec. 1929 issue went for a “Buy It Now” of $75.00FLYING STORIES - Dec. 1929

14TH issue of 14 of the Macfadden Publications bedsheet series.

Authors: “The Cloud Plotters” by Laurence Donovan;
“The Pilot Who Saw Things” by Jackson Scholz;
“The Death Jinx” (Part 3 of 3) by Edwin Vernon Burkholder;

“The Golden Eagle” (Part 2 of 5) by Guy Fowler (it continued when Good Story Magazine Company took over in Feb. 1930)(Guy Fowler wasn’t very prolific but he managed to find his way into all the scarce and Very Rare Pulp titles: BRIEF STORIES, GHOST STORIES, FLYING STORIES, COMPLETE MOVIE NOVEL MAGAZINE, RED BLOODED STORIES, FIGHTING ROMANCES from the WEST and EAST, SUBMARINE STORIES, and BLUE BAND MAGAZINE)

“Charles Lindbergh Aviation. All the pages are wavy as if once exposed to moisture. Yet no stuck pages and no smell. Pricing takes that into account. Really scarce issue.”

Having seen the copy it is truly in VFN+/perhaps up to NM- condition. The wavy pages are very, very light, almost imperceptible, with only some noticeable pinkish bleed into the inner back cover. I’ve seen brand new, fresh newsstand magazines having 10 time worse wavy pages than this copy.

Just 11 cover images are at Galactic Central of the 20 issues, but of those the Dec. 1929 issue has the weakest, less dramatic cover. Still, it is a scarce Bedsheet Pulp.

ENJOY PULPS – David Lee Smith



Pulps Pricings Sales Census: Brief Stories (December 1925)



2 copies of BRIEF STORIES – Dec. 1925 sold recently on eBay for $132.49 and $318.13 !


BRIEF STORIES - Dec. 1925 (better copy side)

BRIEF STORIES – Dec. 1925 (Extremely Nice Spine)

Authors: “A Desert “Sheek” ” by Erle Stanley Gardner (at this time Gardner was doing the ‘Speed Dash – “The Human Fly” ‘ series over at TOP-NOTCH MAGAZINE;
“In Old Port Royal: V – Not Always to the Strong” (6TH “Port Royal” appearance of 14) by Ian Hopel ;
Isabelle Stewart Way;  Howard R. Marsh (semi-prolific);
“The Tale of Ah Foo’s Rat” by Howard Rockey (only slightly prolific)
“”This magazine is from my Uncle’s estate. It has not been professionally graded. Please see the pictures for the true description. If I see any writing on the pages, I will show…it.- …”

Looks to have 1/2 spine split (4″ at the bottom),BRIEF STORIES - Dec. 1925 (Dry pages and beat)

dry pages, and lot of old moisture staining/damage (especially noticeable on both covers (I would say 1/5 to 1/4 of the front cover). Still, this copy went for around $132.50.BRIEF STORIES - Dec. 1925 (Dry pages and beat Side Spine)

The better copies description is: “VG+ Rare 1925 Pulp magazine in fantastic shape for its age! Light tears around edges of cover and a small amount of corner chipping on a few inside pages are the only significant flaws on this otherwise very presentable copy.”

SHORT STORIES - June - 10, 1935

SHORT STORIES – June – 10, 1935

BRIEF STORIES - Dec. 1925 (Dry pages and beat Back cover)

Back Cover Moisture Staining

Bookery say, “Scarce” $15.00 – $30.00 – $75.00
Due to the similarities of logo design from 1924 to 1927 on BRIEF STORIES and the logo from SHORT STORIES (“STORIES’ is an exact copy !) you would think BRIEF STORIES was a sister or companion to the other, but they’re not related.
BRIEF STORIES was put out by The Houston Publishing Co. and Personal Arts Co. between 1924-1927 and SHORT STORIES by Doubleday, Page & Co., Inc., NY between 1910-1937. “Curiouser and curiouser.”
ENJOY PULPS – David Lee Smith