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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 17 August 2022
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Sullivan, Robert

(1953-    ) US journalist and author, most of whose work has been nonfiction, much of it associated with Life magazine, where he served as a senior editor for many years. Of sf interest are two spoof "nonfiction" studies, both elaborately arrayed with confabulated documentary evidence about their subject matters. The first, The Flight of the Reindeer: The True Story of Santa Claus and his Christmas Mission (1996), is constructed in part around a narrative, complete with ...

Page, Spider

Pseudonym of US author Donald Graham Cormack (1909-2002), active in the Pulp magazines beginning with his first recorded sale "Revolt of the Circus Freaks" (October/November 1938 Horror Stories); his Blue Steel #1: The Ultimate Answer to Evil (1979) had originally been written as "Slaughter, Inc" in 1943 to continue the Spider sequence (see Norvell W Page) in Spider, but was not printed then due to the closure of the magazine. Copyright considerations explain the change of name to Blue Steel. ...

Allen, L David

(1940-    ) US academic, formerly Instructor in English at the University of Nebraska, and author of various Critical and Historical Works About SF. His first book – written as a Cliffs Notes overview for classroom use – was the useful Science Fiction: An Introduction (1973; vt Science Fiction Reader's Guide 1974). Further nonfiction publications are Herbert's Dune and Other Works (1975), The Ballantine Teachers' Guide to Science Fiction (1975) and Asimov's ...

Murdoch, Jim

(1956-    ) UK author of a Tie to the Rise of the Robots Computer game, Rise of the Robots: The Book (1995), in which a Robot revolt must be thwarted, or not. [JC]

Smith, Cordelia Titcomb

(1902-1994) US librarian and editor of Great Science Fiction Stories (anth 1964), reprinting material ranging from Jules Verne and H G Wells to late-1950s Genre SF. This, to an effect of some bibliographic confusion, was reissued as The Best of Sci-Fi 3 (anth 1964) – as though it were part of the retitled and bizarrely renumbered UK sequence of Judith Merril's US-published "year's best" Anthologies. [DRL]

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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