Bischoff, David F

Tagged: Author

(1951-    ) US author who began publishing sf with "The Sky's an Oyster; The Stars are Pearls" for Perry Rhodan #66 in March 1975, and who quickly established himself as a versatile and adaptable novelist, though his practice of working in collaboration has tended to muffle any sense that he has, in his own right, either a distinctive style or concerns which could be thought of as personal. His first novel, The Seeker (1976) with Chris Lampton, is in a sense, therefore, typical, for there is nothing in particular to remember about this competent sf adventure featuring a fugitive Alien on Earth and a chase. Forbidden World (fixup 1978) with Ted White is, in the same way, efficiently anonymous; and the Dragonstar sequence – Day of the Dragonstar (1983), Night of the Dragonstar (1985) and Dragonstar Destiny (1989), all with Thomas F Monteleone – explores with impersonal ingenuity a giant artificial-world-cum-Zoo in space full of escaped menaces and a hidden agenda or two. The most memorable of his collaborations are Tin Woodman (1979) with Dennis R Bailey – a complex adventure involving a Telepathic human (one of the Mutants described by normals as Tin Woodmen), a sentient Starship, and a convincingly psychopathic villain; The Selkie (1982) with Charles Sheffield, a fantasy; and The Judas Cross (1994) with Charles Sheffield, a World War Two horror/fantasy.

Much the same impression of a genial but impersonal skilfulness is generated by some of Bischoff's solo fiction, too, although Nightworld (1979) interestingly combines elements of Recursive SF – in the shape of an ancient Android who replicates the physique and personality of H G Wells – and Science Fantasy as the protagonist, "Wells" and a girl who must grow up combine forces to brave the Computer-generated Vampires of the forgotten colony planet of Styx; but the sequel, The Vampires of Nightworld (1981), merely exploits the already-established venue. The Diplomatic Touch (2001) is an engaging Space Opera spoof with Sex in it. With Ted White he edited the last four issues of Stardate, 1985-1986.

Set on a Starship with a cosmic troubleshooting mission, the Star Fall books – Star Fall: A Space Fantasy (1980) and Star Spring: A Space Operetta (1982) – show an uneasy lightness of tone, though the Virtual-Reality-like shuffling of pulp venues at its heart is enjoyable. The Star Hounds sequence – The Infinite Battle (1985), Galactic Warriors (1985) and The Macrocosmic Conflict (1986) – drifts dangerously close to the routine. On the other hand the UFO Conspiracy sequence – Abduction: The UFO Conspiracy (1990), Deception (1991) and Revelation (1991) – is a gripping excursion into camp Paranoia; Companionable and chameleon, Bischoff continues to seem to be a jack-of-all-trades who is entirely capable of speaking in his own voice. [JC]

see also: Monsters; Stardate; UFOs.

David Frederick Bischoff

born Washington, District of Columbia: 15 December 1951



The Checklist below is broken into independent works and Ties.




Star Fall


Star Hounds

UFO Conspiracy

  • Abduction: The UFO Conspiracy (New York: Warner Books, 1990) [UFO Conspiracy: pb/Don Puckey]
  • Deception (New York: Warner Books, 1991) [UFO Conspiracy: pb/uncredited]
  • Revelation (New York: Warner Books, 1991) [UFO Conspiracy: pb/uncredited]

individual titles


works as editor

  • Quest (Milwaukee, Wisconsin: Raintree Editions, 1977) [anth: chap: hb/]
  • Strange Encounters (Milwaukee, Wisconsin: Raintree Editions, 1977) [anth: chap: hb/]



Single contributions to Shared Worlds or other extended Ties are not listed under series.

Gaming Magi

Bill, the Galactic Hero

Mutants Amok

Dr. Dimension

Star Trek

Space Precinct

individual titles


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