Amazing Stories Quarterly was a U.S. science fiction pulp magazine that was published between 1928 and 1934. It was launched by Hugo Gernsback as a companion to his Amazing Stories, the first science fiction magazine, which had begun publishing in April 1926. Amazing Stories had been successful enough for Gernsback to try a single issue of an Amazing Stories Annual in 1927, which had sold well, and he decided to follow it up with a quarterly magazine. The first issue of Amazing Stories Quarterly was dated Winter 1928 and carried a reprint of the 1899 version of H.G. Wells’ When the Sleeper Wakes.
Gernsback’s policy of running a novel in each issue was popular with his readership, though the choice of Wells’ novel was less so. A reprint of Gernsback’s own novel Ralph 124C 41+, was published. Unfortunately Gernsback went bankrupt in early 1929, and lost control of both Amazing Stories and Amazing Stories Quarterly; however his assistant, T. O’Conor Sloane, took over as editor. Despite this The magazine began to run into financial difficulties in 1932, and the schedule became irregular; the last issue was dated Autumn 1934. Authors whose work appeared in Amazing Stories Quarterly include Stanton A. Coblentz, Miles J. Breuer, A. Hyatt Verrill, and Jack Williamson.
The first issue of Amazing Stories Quarterly contained a reprint of H. G. Wells’ novel When the Sleeper Wakes, though for some reason Wells did not provide Gernsback with the revised text published in 1910 under the title The Sleeper Awakes; the text printed was that of the original 1899 edition. The other material in the issue was original, and the following issues included material by Edmond Hamilton, Stanton A. Coblentz, R.F. Starzl, David H. Keller, S.P. Meek, J. Schlossel, and Clare Winger Harris, one of the earliest women writers of sf. Although readers’ reactions to the Wells novel were negative, they approved of Gernsback’s policy of publishing a novel in each issue. The only other reprint in the early days of the magazine was Gernsback’s own novel Ralph 124C 41+, which appeared in the Winter 1929 issue. The novel, set in the year 2660, was little more than a series of predictions about the future tied together by a minor plot. Gernsback included a letter column, and began a competition for the best editorials submitted by readers; the first prize was awarded to Jack Williamson, who later became a successful science fiction writer but was just starting his career at that point.
Gernsback added other features to the magazine in order to engage readers, including book reviews, science quizzes, and science news. The last issue under Gernsback’s control was dated Spring 1929 when Sloane took over. over the next two years Sloane published some of the best science fiction of the early years of the field in Amazing Stories Quarterly. Wolf and Ashley cite “Paradox”, by Charles Cloukey, an early time-travel story; The Bridge of Light, by A. Hyatt Verrill, a novel about a lost civilization in South America; The Birth of a New Republic, by Miles J. Breuer and Jack Williamson, in which a man of the 24th century reminisces about a revolt by the inhabitants of the Moon rebel against the Earth; “Paradise and Iron”, by Breuer; and White Lily, by Eric Temple Bell, under the pseudonym John Taine, about a form of crystal life that endangers the planet.
Sadly after 1931 the fiction in Amazing Stories Quarterly became less entertaining. John W. Campbell, Jr.’s space operas, which appeared from 1930 to 1932, were described as “turgid”. Many authors including Jack Williamson, A.Hyatt Verrill, Coblentz, Taine, and Miles J. Breuer, produced original material for Amazing Stories Which Brian Stableford, in the Science Fiction Encyclopedia, regards their contributions as being among “the most important early pulp sf novels”.