Imaginative Tales was an American fantasy and science fiction magazine launched in September 1954 by William Hamling's Greenleaf Publishing Company. It was created as a sister magazine to Imagination, which Hamling had acquired from Raymond A. Palmer's Clark Publishing in 1951. Both Imagination and Imaginative Tales ceased publication at the end of 1958 in the aftermath of major changes in US magazine distribution due to the liquidation of American News Company.
Imaginative Tales originally focused on fantasy, rather than science fiction, but later switched to science fiction adventure stories. With the July 1958 issue, Hamling changed the title to Space Travel in an attempt to bring in readers interested in space because of the recent launch of Sputnik, but the change did not improve circulation. The magazine folded in November 1958, having lasted for 26 issues in total. It published little of note, though it did feature stories by well-known writers such as Philip K. Dick and Harlan Ellison.
Contents and reception
The first issue contained Charles F. Myers' novel Toffee, reprinted from the June 1950 issue of Fantastic Adventures, where it had been titled Shades of Toffee. The "Toffee" series, about an attractive woman who was a figment of imagination of the main character, Marc Pillsworth, also took up the entire second issue, which contained two "Toffee" novellas, "Toffee Takes a Trip" and "Toffee Haunts a Ghost", and no other fiction. Both stories were reprints that had been originally published in 1947 in Fantastic Adventures. The third issue included original fiction for the first time: Raymond E. Banks' novella "The Earthlight Commandos". Few original stories by well-known authors appeared, but it did print original fiction by Robert Bloch, Philip K. Dick, Robert Silverberg and Harlan Ellison. Silverberg in particular appeared frequently, and several issues contain multiple stories by him under a variety of pseudonyms and house names.
- See the individual issues. An online index is available at "Magazine: Imaginative Tales/Space Travel - ISFDB". Retrieved 18 February 2008.
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- Ashley, Michael (1978). The History of the Science Fiction Magazine Part 4 1956–1965. London: New English Library. ISBN 0-450-03438-0.
- Ashley, Mike (2005). Transformations: The Story of the Science Fiction Magazines from 1950 to 1970. Liverpool: Liverpool University Press. ISBN 0-85323-779-4.
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- Tuck, Donald H. (1982). The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction and Fantasy: Volume 3. Chicago: Advent: Publishers, Inc. ISBN 0-911682-26-0.
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