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Welcome to the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, Fourth Edition. Some sample entries appear below. Click here for the Introduction; here for the masthead; here for Acknowledgments; here for the FAQ; here for advice on citations. Find entries via the search box above (more details here) or browse the menu categories in the grey bar at the top of this page.

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Elliott, George

(?   -    ) UK author – possibly pseudonymous – of an sf thriller in the Martin Speed sequence, The Case of the Missing Airmen (1944 chap), featuring various villains and an assortment of deadly Rays. [JC]

Disaster in Time

Made-for-tv movie (1991; vt Grand Tour: Disaster in Time; vt Timescape). Channel Communications presents a Wild Street Pictures Production. Directed by David N Twohy; produced by John A O'Connor. Written by Twohy, based on "Vintage Season" (September 1946 Astounding) by Lawrence O'Donnell (probably C L Moore writing solo). Cast includes Emilia Crow, Jeff Daniels, George Murdock and Ariana Richards. 99 minutes (cut to 90). Colour. / This is a classy little movie, quite without pretension, ...

Lee, Gentry

(1942-    ) US author who held several important posts in NASA's deep-space exploration programme and was a screenwriter for Carl Sagan's Cosmos television series. His sf has been written exclusively in collaboration with Arthur C Clarke (whom see for details); at least initially, the senior partner provided outlines based on ideas generated by both writers, and then the books themselves were written by Lee. Cradle (1988), the first and weakest, is a First Contact drama set ...

Rayner, Jacqueline

(?   -    ) UK author long associated with the Doctor Who universe, for which she has written numerous Ties, beginning with Doctor Who: Earthworld (2001), including some associated Professor Bernice Summerfield books, beginning with Professor Bernice Summerfield and the Squire's Crystal (2001). Her later contributions to Merlin, a fantasy series for Television, begin with Merlin: The Magic Begins (2009) [JC]

Smeaton, Oliphant

(1856-1914) Scottish editor and author in whose Lost Race tale for boys, A Mystery of the Pacific (1899), three young Englishmen searching for a lost relative penetrate a mysterious Sargasso Sea-like barrier in the South Pacific and are taken in a trireme to a giant Island inhabited – they think exclusively – by descendants of ancient Romans. As the plot thickens, however, they discover Underground a second, far more ancient civilization comprising survivors of Atlantis. The three ...

Nicholls, Peter

(1939-2018) Australian editor and author, primarily a critic and historian of sf through his creation and editing of The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction [see below]; resident in the UK 1970-1988, in Australia from 1988; worked as an academic in English literature (1962-1968, 1971-1977), scripted television documentaries, was a Harkness Fellow in Film-making (1968-1970) in the USA, worked as a publisher's editor (1982-1983), often broadcast film and book reviews on BBC Radio from 1974 and ...

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