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Ad Astra

Entry updated 19 October 2014. Tagged: Publication.

UK magazine, in A4 format, published by Rowlot Ltd, edited by James Manning, 16 issues, bimonthly, October/November 1978 to September/October 1981, only first two issues dated. Its subtitle, "Britain's First ScienceFact/ScienceFiction Magazine", contained the seeds of its eventual demise: Ad Astra attempted to cover too many fields, most in no real depth. The fiction, about two stories an issue – mainly from UK authors, including John Brunner, Garry Kilworth, David Langford and Ian Watson – was supplemented by a melange of film, book, games and theatre reviews, together with cartoon strips including Frank Fazakerly, Space Ace of the Future by Bryan Talbot, the "Fission Fragments" sf news column by Langford, science articles – many about astronomy – and Pseudoscience articles. Although printed on Slick paper, and later including colour covers, the production quality was generally poor (especially in the area of proofreading) and the circulation, which peaked at about 18,000, was never sufficient to support the costs. [RR/MA]


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