y Tabloid Story periodical  
Date: 1972-1975 Note: Carmel Kelly left after issue six. Frank Moorhouse was sometimes declared a 'roving editor'. Carl Harrison-Ford worked on many of the later issues in this series.
Date: 1976-1979
Issue Details: First known date: 1972; Latest issue indexed: 1980 1972
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Latest Issues

y Tabloid Story no. [35] 10 September Laurie Clancy (editor), John Ross (editor), Susan McCulloch (editor), 1980 Z1265370 1980 periodical issue
y Tabloid Story no. [34] April Laurie Clancy (editor), Jan McGuinness (editor), Susan McCulloch (editor), 1980 Z1251245 1980 periodical issue
y Tabloid Story no. 33 March Susan McCulloch (editor), Jan McGuinness (editor), Laurie Clancy (editor), 1980 Z1251236 1980 periodical issue
y Tabloid Story no. 32 February Laurie Clancy (editor), Jan McGuinness (editor), Susan McCulloch (editor), 1980 Z1251214 1980 periodical issue
y Tabloid Story no. 30 28 June Laurie Clancy (editor), Susan McCulloch (editor), 1979 Z1251079 1979 periodical issue

AbstractHistoryArchive Description

Dissatisfied with the fiction published by established literary quarterlies, Sydney-based writers Michael Wilding, Frank Moorhouse and Carmel Kelly devised an innovative strategy to publish 'new writing'. Many of the stories favoured by this group contained strong sexual themes and, in the past, had found publication in 'girlie' magazines such as Squire, Casual, Chance and Man. But opportunities for publication became limited as these magazines closed, the latter ceasing operation in 1974.

Tabloid Story first appeared on 20 October 1972 as a sixteen page supplement to National U, the Australian Union of Students newspaper. In subsequent issues Tabloid Story appeared in a variety of host publications, including Honi Soit, Lot's Wife, Nation Review, and the Bulletin. This method of publication secured a circulation unmatched by the established literary quarterlies. Michael Wilding estimated that 50,000 - 60,000 copies of the first two issues were circulated, a figure far exceeding the 1,000-3,000 circulation of the literary quarterlies. Tabloid Story achieved international exposure when included in the Qantas magazine, Q. V., reaching 150,000 passengers across the world. It was also included in the Brooklyn-based magazine Assembling.

Tabloid Story was a restrictive publication, accepting fiction that diverged from the traditional Australian tales of bush life and defied the strictures of the well-rounded story favoured by other magazines. Inspiration was often drawn, not from writers in the Australian tradition, but international writers such as Borges, Cotazar, Casares, Calvino and Barthelme. While not compulsively sexual, the sexual themes in some stories published in Tabloid Story were affected by censorship and one issue, containing Moorhouse's 'The Oracular Stories', was seized by Brisbane vice squad.

Attempting to improve the payment offered to writers of fiction, the editors of Tabloid Story used a grant from the Commonwealth Literary Fund to pay contributors the minimum rate recommended by the Australian Society of Authors. Furthermore, they took the unprecedented step of declaring the minimum rate on their pages, exerting pressure on other publications to follow a similar policy. Many writers found a place in Tabloid Story for their sometimes eccentric take on short fiction. In addition to the editors, stories were contributed by several other significant Australian authors, including Murray Bail, Morris Lurie, Peter Carey, Elizabeth Jolley, Alan Marshall, Jack Hibberd, Helen Garner and Dal Stivens (qq.v.).

Editorial responsibility shifted to Melbourne in 1976 after the twentieth issue. Tabloid Story continued for another four years, appearing in host publications such as the Melbourne Times, Nation Review and the National Times.

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

First known date: 1972
      Sydney, New South Wales,: 1972-1980 .

Works about this Work

Virgin Sock-Washers and Tweed Jackets Adrienne Sallay , 2008 single work criticism
— Appears in: Southerly , vol. 68 no. 2 2008; (p. 177-192)
Michael Wilding (1942-) Pradeep Trikha (interviewer), 2007 single work interview
— Appears in: Delphic Intimations : Dialogues with Australian Writers and Critics 2007; (p. 11-25)
Harpo Gerard Lee , 2002 single work essay
— Appears in: Hot Iron Corrugated Sky : 100 Years of Queensland Writing 2002; (p. 56-68)
Introduction to The Penguin Century of Australian Stories Kerryn Goldsworthy , 2000 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Penguin Century of Australian Stories 2000; (p. xv - xxvii)
Representing Short Stories Ken Gelder , 1989 single work criticism
— Appears in: The New Diversity : Australian Fiction : 1970-88 1989; (p. 11-25)
Tabloid Story Host Journals Stephen Torre , 1984 single work bibliography
— Appears in: The Australian Short Story 1940-1980 : A Bibliography 1984; (p. 366-367)
Some Developments in Short Fiction, 1969-1980 Bruce A. Clunies Ross , 1981 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , October vol. 10 no. 2 1981; (p. 165-180)
Editors' Statements [Laurie Clancy] Laurie Clancy , 1981 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , October vol. 10 no. 2 1981; (p. 245-248)
Fiction Carl Harrison-Ford , 1977 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , October vol. 8 no. 2 1977; (p. 172-178)
Tabloid Story Story Michael Wilding , 1975 single work criticism
— Appears in: New Journalist , no. 17 1975; (p. 9-10) The Tabloid Story Pocket Book 1978; (p. 295-316) Co-Op Publishing Handbook 1978; (p. 183-190) Days of Wine and Rage 1980; (p. 145-154) Cross Currents : Magazines and Newspapers in Australian Literature 1981; (p. 228-239)
Introduction to The Penguin Century of Australian Stories Kerryn Goldsworthy , 2000 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Penguin Century of Australian Stories 2000; (p. xv - xxvii)
Michael Wilding (1942-) Pradeep Trikha (interviewer), 2007 single work interview
— Appears in: Delphic Intimations : Dialogues with Australian Writers and Critics 2007; (p. 11-25)
Virgin Sock-Washers and Tweed Jackets Adrienne Sallay , 2008 single work criticism
— Appears in: Southerly , vol. 68 no. 2 2008; (p. 177-192)
Harpo Gerard Lee , 2002 single work essay
— Appears in: Hot Iron Corrugated Sky : 100 Years of Queensland Writing 2002; (p. 56-68)
Tabloid Story Host Journals Stephen Torre , 1984 single work bibliography
— Appears in: The Australian Short Story 1940-1980 : A Bibliography 1984; (p. 366-367)
Tabloid Story Story Michael Wilding , 1975 single work criticism
— Appears in: New Journalist , no. 17 1975; (p. 9-10) The Tabloid Story Pocket Book 1978; (p. 295-316) Co-Op Publishing Handbook 1978; (p. 183-190) Days of Wine and Rage 1980; (p. 145-154) Cross Currents : Magazines and Newspapers in Australian Literature 1981; (p. 228-239)
Some Developments in Short Fiction, 1969-1980 Bruce A. Clunies Ross , 1981 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , October vol. 10 no. 2 1981; (p. 165-180)
Editors' Statements [Laurie Clancy] Laurie Clancy , 1981 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , October vol. 10 no. 2 1981; (p. 245-248)
Representing Short Stories Ken Gelder , 1989 single work criticism
— Appears in: The New Diversity : Australian Fiction : 1970-88 1989; (p. 11-25)
Fiction Carl Harrison-Ford , 1977 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , October vol. 8 no. 2 1977; (p. 172-178)

PeriodicalNewspaper Details

Frequency:
Irregular
Range:
No.1 1972 - [35] 1980
Size:
Irregular
Note:
Included as a supplement to various host publications.
Note:
Issue numbers 29 and 31 unavailable.
Last amended 17 Dec 2008 09:31:08
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