Working name – in life as well as in print – of UK writer, editor and sf enthusiast Oswyn Robert Tregonwell Hay (1922-1997), born Oswyn Robert Cohn, who began publishing sf in the early 1950s with Flight of the "Hesper" (1951), Man, Woman – and Android (1951), This Planet for Sale (1952), plus Terra! (1952) as by King Lang, a House Name. Moment Out of Time (1952) as by Roy Sheldon has been credited to Hay, who was commissioned to write this novel only for it to be rejected and a replacement produced by H J Campbell. Turning to editing, he produced Hell Hath Fury: An "Unknown" Anthology (anth 1963), a collection of stories from Unknown; The Disappearing Future: A Symposium of Speculation (anth 1970); Stopwatch: A Collection of International SF Stories (anth 1974), an original anthology with stories by John Brunner, Ursula K Le Guin, Christopher Priest, A E van Vogt and others; The Edward De Bono Science Fiction Collection (anth 1976), a selection of stories chosen to illustrate De Bono's theories of "lateral thinking"; The Necronomicon (anth 1978), a hoax assemblage of texts whose major contributors – David Langford, occultist Robert Turner and Colin Wilson – shared cover credit with Hay, arguing that a certain manuscript had been passed obscurely from the Renaissance alchemist John Dee on down to H P Lovecraft (the follow-up volume The R'lyeh Text  is by Turner alone) and influenced his Cthulhu Mythos; and the Pulsar sequence of Original Anthologies, Pulsar 1: An Original Anthology of Science Fiction and Science Futures (anth 1978) and Pulsar 2 [same subtitle] (anth 1979), with stories from Robert P Holdstock and Ian Watson as well as older figures like van Vogt. The first volume of a long-meditated collection of John W Campbell Jr's correspondence, The John W. Campbell Letters, Volume One (coll 1985) edited by Perry A Chapdelaine, Tony Chapdelaine and Hay, was welcomed for the light it shed on numerous moments of sf history; a second volume with the same editors followed in 1993.
From the end of the 1960s, Hay worked to establish some formal organization to promote sf in the UK, and was instrumental in the establishment of the Science Fiction Foundation in 1972, espousing in that role his continuing sense that sf provides an armamentarium of mostly technological tools for coping with the future, and that a – or even the – main role of sf was to educate us for that future. He remained active in the Foundation until his death. [MJE/JC/DRL]
see also: Starlight SF.
Oswyn Robert Tregonwell Hay
born London: 17 October 1922
died Hastings, East Sussex: 3 October 1997
works as editor
individual titles as editor
nonfiction works as editor
The John W Campbell Letters
individual nonfiction titles as editor
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