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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 June 2022
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Davison, Peter

Stage name of UK actor Peter Malcolm Gordon Moffett (1951-    ), best known in sf circles for his 1982-1984 role as the fifth incarnation of Doctor Who (1963-current). His name features in the titles of two Anthologies of Children's SF which were in fact edited anonymously by Richard Evans: Peter Davison's Book of Alien Monsters (anth 1982) and Peter Davison's Book of Alien Planets (anth 1983); Davison's contribution is a brief foreword to each volume. [DRL]

Delacorte, Peter

(1943-    ) US author whose sf novel, Time on My Hands (1997), carries its protagonist back to 1938 Hollywood (see California; Time Travel) with the mission to do anything in his power that will prevent Ronald Reagan from eventually becoming President of the United States; unfortunately for his mission (though fortunately for Reagan, who turns out to be highly likeable), the protagonist's journeys back and forth through time have the effect of destabilizing any attempt to ...

Astounding Award

The current name of the former John W Campbell Award for best new writer. There is a two-year eligibility period: an author first published in 2020 would be eligible for the 2021 or 2022 award but not thereafter. Though closely associated with the Hugo awards and voted for on the same ballot, the Astounding Award is not actually a Hugo. / This best new writer award was last presented under the old name during the Hugo ceremony at the 2019 Worldcon, with the name change announced shortly ...

Minto, William

(1845-1893) Scottish philosopher, academic, journalist and author whose sf novel, The Crack of Doom: A Novel (August 1885-June 1886 Blackwood's Magazine; 1886 3vols), portentously invokes the Disaster threatened by an approaching Comet to shape, intermittently, an otherwise prosaic (and conspicuously dithery) plot; in the event, the End of the World is averted. This novel should not be confused with The Crack of Doom (1895) by Robert Cromie. [JC]

White, Arnold Henry

(1848-1925) UK businessman, politician, journalist and author of a Future War tale, When War Breaks Out [for subtitle see Checklist below] (1898 chap) with H W Wilson, a fairly late example of the Battle of Dorking story, with Britain in this case almost suffering defeat at the hands of France and Russia, though America comes to her aid, enabling Britain to win a sea victory. Wilson was active in the Navy League in the 1890s, and during the early 1900s was a prominent advocate of pre-emptive ...

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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