Dedicated to the legacy of Edward Stratemeyer, author & founder of the Stratemeyer Syndicate

The Ted Scott series begins

The first volume of the Ted Scott series was an obvious retelling of the first solo Transatlantic flight by Charles A. Lindbergh in May 1927.  From time to time a reference is made to how quickly the story was rushed into print.  An examination of the dates is interesting. Charles Lindbergh departed from Roosevelt Field, […]

Ghostwriting in the Mega-Books era 3

Ghostwriting in the Mega-Books era 3

The Stratemeyer Syndicate was working to produce books that would sell for many years.  This meant that there was an avoidance of brand names and slang and popular culture items which would tend to date the stories.  Even World War II was largely unmentioned directly for the titles produced during the war.  Uncle Ned of […]

Ghostwriting in the Mega-Books Era 2

Ghostwriting in the Mega-Books Era 2

A 2015 post collected some information about Mega-Books, the book packager that succeeded the Stratemeyer Syndicate when the earlier firm was purchased by Simon & Schuster. The Stratemeyer Syndicate supplied outlines, often very detailed, to its ghostwriters.  However, Mega-Books (and Simon & Schuster afterward when they took the work in house) required writers to supply […]

What the Font — Bright Days

Edward Stratemeyer’s first amateur printing in the mid-1870s attempted to replicate the larger story papers he read.  In the 1880s he returned to this field with a semi-professional story paper called Our American Boys that lasted for three issues at the beginning of 1883. His first stories were published in story papers like Golden Days (James Elverson, […]

Banned Book Week

The last week in September is considered to be Banned Book Week.  In 2019 this is Sept. 22-28. While you will see lists of many books that have been “challenged” or “censored” over the years, most of the time our juvenile series books are not listed. Yet, the librarians who wanted to impress fellow librarians, […]

What the Font — 1950s Nancy Drew

Part 1 of this series explored Stratemeyer Syndicate series book typefaces of the 1920s through the mid-1940s. In 1946 the appearance of the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew  were changed dramatically.  The dust jackets adopted a new design which collectors call a “wraparound” dust jacket.  The illustration is wider and starts on the front panel […]

What the Font — 1930s Nancy Drew

The success of a book can be attributed to many things.  It can be related to plot and characters.  Illustrations can have a significant impact.  Not always recognized is the importance of page design and typography.  The shapes of the letters, the spacing, the size of the margins. Edward Stratemeyer’s role as an amateur printer […]

Two presentations in San Diego, June 2018

James D. Keeline will give two presentations as part of the Oasis Lifelong Learning program in June 2018.  These are held at Grossmont Center in La Mesa.  Details will be found on the individual event pages.  This includes the nominal fee ($12 per class) and a link to register on the Oasis website. Stratemeyer Syndicate […]

Hawaiian Volcano

The volcano Kilauea on the island of Hawaii has recently been in the news.  The entire archipelago has formed from relatively recent volcanic activity and Kilauea has long been active and a marvel and terror for more than 150 years. Edward Stratemeyer’s older half-brother, George Christian Stratemeyer, left Elizabeth, New Jersey, and moved first to […]

Whisky Instead of Milk

After Franklin K. Mathiews’ polemic was published in The Outlook in November 1914, which led to the foundation of Children’s Book Week, there were other articles published to warn parents, teachers, and librarians of the reading they considered to be dangerous to boys and their imaginations. One interesting example was written by Walter Prichard Eaton (1878-1957) […]

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