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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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Swayne, Martin

Pseudonym of Scottish-born UK psychiatrist and author Henry Maurice Dunlop Nicoll (1884-1953), who otherwise wrote as Maurice Nicoll; he served through World War One as a Captain in the Royal Army Medical Corps at Gallipoli and elsewhere. Some of his stories – like "The Sleep Beam" (March 1918 Strand), in which the eponymous Ray stops the Germans from sleeping and thereby they surrender, and "The Whistling" (October 1918 Lloyd's Magazine), in which it may be something like Gaia making the ...

McLaughlin, Iain

(1967-    ) UK Comics writer, author of several Radio plays including some for the Doctor Who universe, some with Claire Bartlett; he began to publish work of genre interest with "The Time Lord's Story" (with Bartlett) in Doctor Who: Short Trips: Repercussions (anth 2004) edited by Gary Russell. He is the co-author of a contribution to the Time Hunter Shared-World series, Time Hunter: Echoes (2005), again with Claire Bartlett. A character in his Doctor Who Novellas Doctor ...

Butler, William

(1929-    ) US author best known for nonfantastic novels, some set in Japan. The Butterfly Revolution (1961), which is of sf interest, describes the almost instantaneous Dystopian tyranny created when a group of children "trapped" in a holiday camp take it over, a Satirical vision of an unhinged America which climaxes in the savage lynching of a Black camper (see Race in SF). The Butterfly Revolution was severely modified in the film version, Summer Camp Nightmare (1987). ...

Rollo, William

(?   -    ) UK author of The Big Wheel (1984), a Near Future Technothriller set in near space, where the Big Wheel Space Station is a US strategic command centre in geosynchronous orbit, rivalled by the USSR's Astrogorodok on the far side of Earth. Escalating ecological Disaster (driven chiefly by Climate Change) on the mother planet leads to armed strife in space, and on the Moon, to decide the future for the remnants of humanity. [JC/DRL]

Idle, Eric

(1943-    ) UK comedian, composer, actor, and author of a wide range of comic material, from skits for the famous UK Television series Monty Python's Flying Circus (1969-1974) to the book and libretto for the play Monty Python's Spamalot (2005), and of two novels, the second of which, The Road to Mars: A Post-Modern Novel (1999), is sf featuring an Android scholar in the employ of two twenty-second century comedians working the interplanetary vaudeville circuit known as the ...

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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