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Fantast, The

Entry updated 14 June 2021. Tagged: Fan, Publication.

UK fanzine initially published from Eastleigh, Hampshire, by C S Youd (John Christopher) and from issue #10 (April 1941) by Douglas Webster from Aberdeen, Scotland, with John F Burke (Jonathan Burke) as co-editor for #9 (March 1941) and #10. UK quarto (10 x 8 in), duplicated. Fourteen issues from April 1939 to July 1942; monthly until #7 (October 1939), after which the schedule became irregular.

Typically for its time, The Fantast aspired to literary merit as well as fan Humour, and contained much amateur fiction and verse. The first issue featured Poetry, including "The Twilight of a Sun" by Arthur C Clarke; two stories, one by David McIlwain (Charles Eric Maine), and articles by Burke and Youd. #2 (May 1939) saw the first appearance of D R Smith, who became a regular columnist, and the beginning of the fan-fiction serial "Fanopolis" by "Fantacynic", a Pseudonym (of Youd) that led to much speculation among readers. Other contributors who went on to become sf professionals were Forrest J Ackerman (who had already sold professionally), Robert A W Lowndes, Wilson Tucker (under his nom-de-fan Hoy Ping Pong) and Eric C Williams.

Looking back at The Fantast in "Again the Fantast" (February 1958 Innuendo #7), Harry Warner Jr wrote that "it may quite possibly have been the most consistently, enduringly excellent fanzine ever published from the literary standpoint". [DRL]

see also: The Futurian.


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