This is SKYRACK No. 18, dated 1st May 1960, and published by Ron Bennett, 7 Southway, Arthurs Avenue, Harrogate, Yorkshire, England. 6d per copy, 6 issues for 2/6d. Subscriptions in USA 35cents for 6 issues (6 issues airmailed for 65cents) to Bob Pavlat, 6001 43rd Avenue, Hyattsville, Maryland. News of interest to sf fandom gratefully received, and yes Pam Bulmer, it does mean that you get a contributors copy. Cartoon on left by Atom. Contributors Eric Bentcliffe, Keith Freeman, Archie Mercer, Lynn Hickman, Jim Linwood.
S.D. & TRIODE TO COMBINE
THE RATHER SHATTERING NEWS that one of Anglofandom’s most dependable fanzines is folding was given me at the convention. Terry Jeeves’ recent engagement to Valerie Williams (who was much admired during their brief visit to the Kingsley) has meant that he’ll have to drop TRIODE and co-editor Eric Bentcliffe is going into partnership with Liverpool’s Norman Shorrock, editor of SPACE DIVERSIONS. In effect, then, the two titles are to combine. At the moment it looks as though the combination (with Eric as Editor and Norman as publisher) will wind. up their respective magazines and begin their collaboration with a new title, as yet undecided. The final TRIODE is virtually on stencil and will appear during May. The final SD is also due, containing lengthy articles on the SolaCon by Terry Carr and Bill Donaho. Subscriptions to both zines will be honoured by the new team and where these overlap will be extended. Quipped Eric, "This will be a good excuse to go over to the Shorrocks’ even more often.”
This is not all that springs from the Mersey area. The Liverpool SF Society is renouncing its LaSFaS title and. within the next two or three months will be known simply as The Liverpool Group. Still maintaining its basic interest in science fiction, the Club will seek to recruit members who are interested. in tape recording and cine photography. And, it is hoped, parties in the traditional manner
FANAC TOO! Following the recent hoax issues of SKYRACK under the title of SKYHACK, it was pleasing to note that the long established Hugo winning newszine, FANAC, is not above being parodied. There arrived here the other day a four pager called PANAC which contains some nice humour and some biting exaggerations of the West Coast scene which is so fully covered by FANAC. It will interesting to see how the Berkeley Publishing Giants react to this one. Er....I take it that it isn’t a double ploy, Ron and Terry?
FOR SOME ODD REASON, such as forgetfulness, I didn't mention Doc Weir’s convention talk on Karel Capek. Doc is recognised as an authority on the Czech authors but seems to have had a rough deal all round at the convention. His talk was attended by only a handful (still, I suppose these people were really interested) and his sixty-question quiz for the TAFF candidates was abandoned after the first set of questions had been posed. In addition, Doc was outvoted for the BSFA Chairmanship. A pity, for Doc is a thoroughly nice and sincere person and one of the most brilliant brains in fandom.
ALSO FORGOTTEN from the convention reporting was the official attendance which ran out at 87 + the two Guests of Honour.
IT WAS GREAT TO BE IN LONDON AGAIN. I went down to the Great Metropolis on. the Tuesday before the convention, placing Inchmery as my first port of call. It was Vince Clarke’s birthday and I bought him a lollipop. When Vince came in, I hid in the back room and then sprang out on him as he was talking to Joy, Sandy and his father, who had dropped in. These ploy surprises don’t come off with Vince, however, for he merely took the lollipop and went on with his conversation. *** At Ella Parker’s the same night, I sat up until 7.30 am, teaching Ella and fellow guest Brian Jordan (until you’ve slept in a single bed with Brian you haven’t lived - it’s not too bad until he takes your head in both hands and beats it against the wall). Needless to say, Miss Parker won the brag session. *** Bobbie Gray, Brian Jordan and I took Don Ford to the Tower of London where he swapped quips with London post-card sellers and Cockney urchins (”Steal an apple and I'll take your picture.”) *** At the party Ella threw for Don, surpise and welcome guests were Bill Temple and nonexistent Alan Dodd *** Who says that in London's crowds one never sees a known face? I sat down on a tube train to find that I was sharing the seat with Mal and Sheila Ashworth and later the same afternoon when Alan Rispin, Sture Sedolin and I were walking down Regent Street on our way to view the latest Cinerama presentation (“South Seas Adventure”) we ran across Leeds fan Ernest Sterne. There is absolutely no truth in the tale that I stop complete strangers on the street and get them to sub to SKYRACK! *** Don Ford was in Trafalgar Square shooting the sights, when a kind doorman took him in to an upstair window. Don was asked to sign a form relieving the company of all responsibility in case he fell. Don said that it wasn’t necessary as he had a good insurance company. “We’re not worried about you, it’s the people you may fall on,” he was told. *** Quite a turn out at the Globe which has a new look these days. Ech! and like that.
FEMIZINE Spring 1960 (Ethel Lindsay, 6 Langley Avenue, Surbiton, Surrey; 1/- per copy; 24pp). When so many fanzines are beating one another over the eds trying to become the Focal Point of fandom, it’s pleasing to receive a fanzine which possesses such a marked degree of informality. For some reason I’m wildly reminded of Georgina Ellis’ Wendigo, and it’s about time we had another fanzine like that. Ethel is backed up by Bjo Wells (who introduces Elinor Busby, my favourite Fan-I-said-hello-to-but-little-more-to) and Ina Shorrock (who introduces husband Norman). Janey Johnston writes on cats, Juanita Coulson writes on Charles Eric Maine and Margaret Picken and Sheila Ashworth report on the Liverpool party over New Year. Joy Clarke reviews fanzines in microelite. A short letter column makes up an enjoyable issue.
QUANTUM 6 (John Martin Baxter, 29 Gordon Rd., Bowral, NSW, Australia. 22pp) is notable for not being notable, a fact the editor promises to belie in the next issue. There’s a piece of fiction by Margaret Duce and an exhaustive listing of Ace sf and fantasy titles by Don Tuck. Fanzine reviews and letters make up the issue which suffers from lack of artwork, poor layout and poor duplicating. John, however, has enthusiasm and the zine should improve.
BRENNSCHLUSS 4 (Ken & Irene Potter, 1 Dunsmure Rd., Stamford Hill, London N.16; 35pp; Spring 1960) also suffers from poor duplicating, but this fault can be easily overlooked. Damnit, this is Brennschluss, and who amongst us can remember when the previous issue appeared? Printed on rainbow coloured paper, this humourzine makes a welcome re-entry to the Zinescene with material by Mal Ashworth, Dave Wood, George Locke, Ken Potter, Don Geldart (a terrific piece on Japanese life) and Irene Potter. A magazine to be read during an off hour - like, for cheering you up.
THE 1960 CLUB COMBOZINE OF THE SCIENCE FICTION CLUB OF LONDON was produced by this newly formed group for the con and is the best shilling’s worth to come out of British fandom for a long, long time, The duplicating and layout is little short of perfect, and copies may be obtained by contacting Ella Parker, 151 Canterbury Road, West Kilburn, London NW 6. The material is entirely by members, and what a list of contributors make up its 52 pages -- Ella Parker, Paul Enever, Ethel Lindsay, George Locke, Ken and Irene Potter, Don Geldart, Arthur Thomson, Joy and Vince Clarke, Jim Groves, Sandy Sanderson and Honorary Member Sid Birchby. Vince writing on fandom and Sandy writing on fanzines are two items which are especially notable. Recommended enthusiastically.
THE PROGRAMME BOOKLET OF THE 1960 CONVENTION, produced by G.W. Mosdell, 106 St Johns Hill, London SW 11, is hardly a fanzine in the true sense of the word, but completists might like to have a copy in their files. This 18 page booklet suffers from poor layout and underinking (the adverts could have been reproduced by Gesterprint) but it has some artwork by Jim Cawthorn which is up to his usual high standard, and it is worth reading for the articles on the convention’s two Guests of Honour, Ted Carnell (by Ken Bulmer) and Don Ford (by Ted Carnell}.
JHIM LINWOOD writes: “On 3rd April Alan Rispin, Brian Jordan and myself met at Alan’s to discuss the forming of a Young Fan Apa, a unanimous decision being reached that no plans were to be made without other opinions, and further discussion was postponed until the con. ((And then? RB)) We went on to discuss things more fannish like sex, Ella Parker’s age and to play brag.” *** Jim also reports that the BBC TV Philip Marlowe film of 4th April, entitled “The Hunger” about a psychological killer, was by Playboy SF author Chuck Beaumont.
KEITH FREEMAN notes that both the April and March issues of the BRE Astounding are numbered Vol l6 No 2. *** Ethel Lindsay asks me to point out that the Eric mentioned in the Mal Ashworth letter of the latest FEZ is not Eric Bentcliffe, but another Eric who has now left fandom. This needed pointing out? *** A London taxi driver was quite amazed to have his cab booked at the con – for filming. Surprise attendee took cine shots in the traditional Keystone manner. *** Congratulations to George Locke who will find his name in a prominent position in the next Ape.*** Terry Jeeves and Valerie Williams will probably wed at the end of July. Latest is that the honeymoon will probably not be on sunny Ibiza after all. *** The Bulmers will holiday for a month in Belfast this summer. *** Ella Parker is wondering who left her two boxes of chocolates at the con hotel desk. *** Rumour has it that the US edition of NEW WORLDS has folded, but at the con Ted Carnell was surprised to learn this. *** BSFA Committee and other interested fans are meeting at Kettering over Whitsun. ***Mike Moorcock and Sandra Hall are engaged. Congratulations you two. *** 20 fans went along to the Nuclear Disarmament Rally in Trafalgar Square on Easter Monday. Another 30,000 non-fans were also present.*** The This is Your Fan Life soundtrack, a 5” reel of Mastertape, has been mislaid by Eric Bentcliffe. Anyone recall seeing it lying around in the con hall? *** Lynn Hickman - I’m still taking 3/6d subs to the JD 10th Annish - has moved again. From 1st May address will be 224 S. Dement Ave., Dixon, Illinois.