Thursday, February 16, 2012

Why was Amazing Stories named as such?

Hugo Gernsback enlightens us in "Editorially Speaking" in Amazing Stories, September 1926 (download):

'Several years ago, when I first conceived the idea of publishing a scientifiction magazine, a circular letter was sent to some 25,000 people, informing them that a new magazine by the name "Scientifiction" was shortly to be launched. The response was such that this idea was given up for two years. The plain truth is that the word "Scientifiction" while admittedly a good one, scares off many people who would otherwise read the magazine."

Junk mail to 25,000 people in 1926? Spam obviously wasn't invented recently.

'anything that smacks of science seems to be too "deep" for the average type of reader.'