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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.

Site updated on 20 May 2022
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Speculation

UK Fanzine edited by Peter Weston from Birmingham 1963-1973. 33 issues; mostly duplicated; UK quarto paper. / The first six issues, October 1963 to September 1964, were titled Zenith; the next seven, December 1964 to July 1966, carried the transitional title Zenith-Speculation; thereafter, from #14 in October 1966, it was simply Speculation. Averaging 60pp in its final incarnation, Speculation was for many years consistently the UK's best amateur magazine of comment and criticism. Regular ...

Desmond, Shaw

(1877-1960) Irish author, poet, founder of the International Institute for Psychical Research in 1934, and author of many works on the afterlife and several Scientific Romances. Democracy (1919) predicts a Near Future revolution in the UK. The Dystopian Ragnarok (1926) envisages the destruction of civilization through a worldwide Future War fought by armies equipped with radio-controlled planes and poisonous gases, the narrative concentrating on the derring-do of futuristic fighter pilots. ...

Finch, Sheila

(1935-    ) UK-born author, in the USA from 1957, naturalized in 1965, who began publishing sf with "The Confession of Melakos" for Sou-wester in 1977; some of her early stories appeared as by Sheila Finch-Rayner. Her first novel, Infinity's Web (1985), complicatedly describes the lives of five versions of one protagonist who live in various Alternate Worlds, and who gradually gain a sense of the mutual web they inhabit. Though far more devoted to generic pleasures than ...

Mantley, John

(1920-2003) Canadian-born US screenwriter and producer whose Near Future sf novel, The Twenty-Seventh Day (1956; rev 1956), features Galactic Federation Aliens who give each of five humans from opposing countries an invincible weapon in 1963 to see what they do with them. The novel was filmed – from the US version, which has a revised ending – as The 27th Day (1957). Mantley wrote teleplays for The Outer Limits and The Wild, Wild West, and for years worked as a producer on Gunsmoke; ...

SETI

Term coined outside the sf genre, standing for Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence – carried out by passive observation, typically using radio telescopes in hope of detecting Alien transmissions or Communications. A notable real-world effort was Frank Drake's 1960 observational Project Ozma, sited at the US National Radio Astronomy Observatory (Green Bank, West Virginia) and discussed by Martin Gardner in The Ambidextrous Universe (1964; rev vt The New Ambidextrous Universe 1990). ...

Robinson, Roger

(1943-    ) UK computer programmer, bibliographer and publisher, active in UK Fandom for many years. The Writings of Henry Kenneth Bulmer (1983 chap; rev 1984 chap) is an exhaustive Bibliography of one of the most prolific sf writers, and Who's Hugh?: An SF Reader's Guide to Pseudonyms (1987) is similarly exhaustive in its listing of Pseudonyms. Criticized at first for its failure to annotate its findings – so that, for instance, pseudonyms used for sf could not be ...



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