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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 23 May 2022
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EC Comics

Company founded in 1945 by M C Gaines (1896-1947), creator of the format of the modern Comic book and original partner in the company that became DC Comics. The initials stood for both Educational and, later, Entertaining Comics. After Gaines's death the company passed to his son, William M Gaines (1922-1992), who revamped the line to his own taste. Educational Comics was wound down and Entertaining Comics was transformed into a line of anthology titles that included two sf comic books – ...

Fitch, Thomas

(1838-1923) US politician, apparently inconspicuous, lawyer, newspaper editor, and author of Better Days; Or, a Millionaire of To-Morrow (1891) with his wife Anna M Fitch; it is a Utopia told from a conservative point of view. [JC]

Gaida, Davida

(?   -    ) US author of 2084 (1983), a Dystopia set in southern California, where Genetic Engineering has been used to prevent the birth of women; those few who survive are either whores or slaves. The contemporary microbiologist whose research led inadvertently to this world arrives by Time Travel in the midst of crisis, which she helps to resolve. [JC]

Harkaway, Nick

Pseudonym of UK author Nicholas Cornwell (1972-    ) whose first novel, The Gone-Away World (2008), applies toxic gouaches of Equipoise to a Post-Holocaust tale set in a surrealized Alternate World, where resemblances to the "real" world can be seen as diversionary: x or y may differ from consensual reality, and the telling of the tale may dwell on these differences, but the alphabet of the story as a whole describes the Near Future we are entering. The plot is gonzo (and ...

St John, J Allen

Working name of American artist James Allen St John (1872-1957). After a peripatetic upbringing with wealthy parents, St John settled in New York in 1891, received artistic training with the Art Students League, began painting portraits and landscapes for prominent figures in New York society, and briefly taught at the New York School of Art. In 1904 he relocated to his hometown of Chicago, wrote and illustrated one book, The Face in the Pool: A Faerie Tale (1905), and was soon providing covers ...

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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