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March 17, 2008



The fact that someone would put out a zine of erotic Star Wars fanfic and have enough of a sense of humor to call it "I Don't Care What You Smell" is massively awesome.
"Get in there ya big furry thing."
Great post.


In that picture, is Capt. Kirk supposed to be burning his pubic hair off?


Oh my. The K/S stuff is just wrong on so many levels. It frightens me.

Karen Funk Blocher

Gee, the early 1990s (the timeframe of those early issues of The Observer at the bottom of your gallery) don't seem all that long ago in the grand scheme of things. Just a few years later, I was on AOL and Prodigy message boards while continuing to edit the things. And yet that was still an era of half-tones and paste-ups.

If you want to talk about "early" fanzines, though, look at the 1970s, with Spockanalia and other Trek zines, including the STAR Syracuse one, 2-5YM, the first issue of which I typed up on a ditto master in late 1973 or 1974. Better yet, go even further back, to the 1950s. That's when Frederick Pohl and others were publishing fanzines, long before Newman and Lambert, Roddenberry, Lucas, Bellisario et al. gave us their tv sf franchises to obsess about!

Benny C.

I've never experienced this fanzine state, and it puzzles me greatly: how were they distributed?

I mean, obviously, fanzines are a work of love, but who did they make these fanzines for? Was it a small community in a small town, or was there some secret cabal of trek/war lovers communicating with letters and catalogs, or were the fanzines simply produced to be sold at a convention?


Benny C @11:27: As a fanzine veteran I think I can answer your question. Fanzines were sold a couple of ways. One was through conventions. There used to be a small network of people who were in the business of taking fanzines around to conventions and selling them. They'd do it on a commission basis. We advertised in fan newsletters and also got our 'zines into local SF bookstores.

Media fanzines grew out of the tradition of literary 'zines. Some years ago at a convention I met a lady who had been cranking literary SF 'zines out on a mimeograph machine since the 1950's. I know they predate that era. She told me her publication spread by word of mouth.

Why did I do it? Well, it was certainly a labor of love, but it also opened the door to pro publication. I know quite a few writers who got their start in fanzines.

And yes, I have a few titles shown above. But man, that flaming Kirk is disturbing.


Some of those SW fanzines were actually published in the 1990s, even early 2000s.


I can give a partial answer to the question of how fanzines were distributed. Local chapters of fan clubs. You will note that several of the covers bear the word 'Newsletter'. (If I can find some of my old Robin of Sherwood stuff, I might scan and post it. I beleive I may also have a couple of issues of the Gallimaufrey.)
Stories and artwork would be sent in to the editor (who was also ususally the proofreader, typist, and publisher). When I say stories, I mean actual fiction, not thinly veiled porn. When I say sent, it was by means of putting paper into something called an envelope, typing out an actual street address on this strange container, and affixing another tiny piece of paper to the outside before placing it in a box apparently designed to magically convey it to the intended destination. The finished magazine came to one's home in much the same way. They could also be sold at cons or handed out at these odd face-to-face gatherings of fans called meetings.
Hope this clears things up for the kiddies.


Here's a link to another gallery of fanzines from the University of Iowa Libraries:


Here's an early TVSCIFI news zine parody. Funny stuff.


TVSCIFI, Awesome Zine link.

Roberta Tennant Debono

Live long and prosper, Mr. Allen,

We enjoyed seeing our Fanzines included among the Legendary Classic Star Trek Fanzines posted on this site! We sold quite a few fanzines, but they were written purely for the Love of Trek. Any profits went back into making more zines. We were fortunate to have published, in November 1987, the first Next Generation Fanzine, The Hive, which by total coincidence, mirrored an episode which aired the following spring. Long live Trek, its philosophy, its political enlightenment, its compassion, its insight and empathy, its romances and friendships, its inspirational science, and the Fun and Thrills that it brought to fans. Peace and long life--Make it so!


These aren't early! SF fanzines go back to the 30's. Show me some 'zines from before World War II!


Fanlore has over 6000 media fanzines, many with covers.

Fandom: how I love you, let me count the ways.

T A Chafin

VERY cool site. One error in the comments section though. I regret to inform Ms Roberta Tennant Debono that "The Hive" was not the first Star Trek: The Next Generation fanzine. The first was called "This Is It!" and was published in May of 1987, even before the complete cast was announced. In fact, it had such complete details of the characters in its stories that Paramount asked us to stop it's sale after just one issue.

Just FYI...

roberta tennant

@ T.A. Chafin...that is very cool! I am only quoting other online sources when I say The Hive was the first ST:TNG fanzine published, but I will graciously acknowledge that yours was certainly the first, unless we hear from someone else who published one even earlier! Live long and prosper...Make it so! Roberta Tennant Debono

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