NOVAE TERRAE #28 - Vol. 3 No. 4 (Dec 1938)



Copytyping this issue by Joe Patrizio.

Cover by Harry Turner.
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Volume 3
Number 4
New Worlds

Editor: Maurice K. Hanson
Associates: Arthur C. Clarke, William F. Temple.

Editorial Address: 88, Gray's Inn Road, London, W.C.1.

Cover by Harry Turner.


Art and Science-Fiction..............................3
Idle Chatter in the Vaults............................6
Why Aren't We Dictators.........................12
England in American Fantasy....................12
Knowledge Test.......................................15
ASTOUNDING Review..........................16
Thirteen Fans...........................................17
Science Concussions and Tin Tacks.........18
It's in the Library......................................19
Executive Committee Report....................20
Branch Reports........................................22
News Review..........................................24

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by John F. Burke

Speaking about a Wesso illustration at a Liverpool branch meeting some time ago I asked one of our members what he thought of the illustrations in ASTOUNDING and he told me he "never looked at the pictures". The fact that this aroused a sigh of horror from several of us surely means something -- why should we be surprised that one who avowedly reads science-fiction because he wishes to improve the world, or because he likes stories about science, should be totally uninterested in the art work of a science-fiction magazine? There must be something in the make-up of the average fan that links art and literature -- perhaps it links music as well, as most fans are deeply interested in some form of music.

The first science-fiction magazines I ever read were, of course, illustrated by Paul, and although I had never evinced any interest in people who would splash colour about or make scratches with pen and ink, I was attracted to them. Somehow, whatever their faults (and today I can see many faults in Paul's work) they lent an atmosphere to the magazine that has never been surpassed. Ever after I lent an eye to the illustrations. For some time I ignored an illustration if it was not by Paul, but as the years rolled by I naturally saw the folly of this, and started to look at other work. Marchioni, Winter, Saaty and all the rest....they made little appeal, but gradually something began to take hold. This may sound something like an autobiography but I think you will agree that most fans follow exactly the same path. I was not artistically inclined. When I drew a cow it would take an expert in mental telepathy to deduce what I was supposed to be doing. The idea of entering an art gallery was rather pitiful; yet

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after some years of reading science-fiction I go round criticising Wesso's inferior sketching, raving over the cross-hatching and flawless technique of Virgil Finlay (when is some editor going to realise what a swell stf illustrator Finlay would be?), the beautifully executed work of Dold, and so on.........


I think the fact that true scientifiction enthusiasts are usually interested in art, even if they only say "that's pretty good" or "I think Wesso's lousy don't you" is that they are artistically minded rather than scientifically. Gernsback tried for many years to excuse his magazines by explaining that they encouraged young men to take an interest in science. Today we know this to be untrue, but we are still not quite sure what it is that makes us run around paying enormous sums in order to get hold of old, tattered magazines. Wollheim and his Communist friends assure us that we want to make the world better. Of course we do, but science-fiction doesn't help that in any way. Other miserable mortals will tell us that we want to escape the harsh realities of the world by drowning our sorrows in space-warps and biological monstrosities. If this were true of science-fiction fans only how do such folk explain an interest in detective magazines? Reading such stories is surely a form of excapism -- why pick on stf as something on its own? There must be something that leads us to science-fiction particularly. And that something|? I may be wrong, but I fancy it is a taste for good literature.

Now that the laughter has subsided and the scoffers ceased muttering remarks about ray guns and good literature, I would like to say that I personally think there is more good literature value in fantasy than in any other form of modern fiction. That is why I can appreciate WEIRD TALES as much as any of the science-fiction magazines. It is a taste for good reading that leads a person to science

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-fiction. It might lead him to Dickens, Thackeray or any of the other great authors of the past or present, well as desiring to read good English written in a good style, the modern youth wishes to look ahead, to live in the present and future -- and Dickens and his colleagues wrote about the past. So the seeker after knowledge and style tried to find a form of literature that was progressive, imaginative and well-written. Detective stories cannot be called this....but science-fiction can. It is a genuine desire to improve his appreciation of literary style and what constitutes good literature that forces him to read Taine, Stuart, Merritt and Co. in preference to Edgar Wallace and Sydney Horler.

That shows what an advanced aesthetic taste we fans have (I'm nothing if not modest) and, if we are so obviously artistically inclined, surely that would explain our interest in the art work that is provided for us. Can you imagine the reader of a love magazine complaining about the inferiority of the illustrations? Readers of such magazines read as a form of escapism and are not worried about little technicalities of artistic style.

I do not deny the existence of Michelist or Escapists (far be it from me) but I contend that the majority of fans read because they want to read good literature and educate their minds.

All right, you can shoot now.

The British Fan in His Natural Haunt series by William F. Temple has received so much praise that it can be justly described as the most popular feature ever included in NOVAE TERRAE. It is with very great regret, therefore, that in spite of numerous requests we must announce that Mr. Temple states that the service cannot be continued beyond the six articles originally planned and which have now all appeared.

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by Eric C. Williams

Scene: Editors Hanson, Temple and Clarke examining correspondence over breakfast.

Hanson: (unfolding a gigantic sheet of printed paper) "Look at this -- another form from the British Museum."
Clarke: "What do they want this time? The BIS Bulletin?"
Hanson: "No, NOVAE TERRAE. Didn't you send it off with your blinking BIS Journal?"
Temple: "Pass the butter and shut up you squigs."
Clarke: "Of course I did, I just caught the post - you remember. That makes about four of those blithering things they've sent. God knows where they must put all the stuff they collect, and God knows what they want it for!"
Temple: "Are you squigs going to pass the butter...?"

Scene: The dim lit vaults of the British Museum. Two young men stand among towering stacks of papers and printed matter of all kinds. One is writing in a book, the other kneels on the floor in the dust and examines a small pile of magazines. Now and again he sneezes.

"Artishoooo! Lot 575, 216."
"Slowly rotting atoms! this job is enough to send you rockets. Some more of this duplicated stuff."
"Name of production -- let me see -- N-O-V-A-E Terrae."
"Novae Terrae. What on earth does that mean?"
"New Earths, from the Latin. Duplicated production."
"Yes, I've got that down. What year?"
"1938, believe it or not."
"1938? Lord! how this duplicated stuff smells when it reaches its hundredth birthday!"

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"No need to tell me. Nature of contents -- um, this is a bit difficult to place; largely speculative I should say."
"Well, that makes a bit of a change."
"Yes, seems to be concerned largely with speculative fiction published in other books and magazines."
"I suppose that brings it under the heading of a fan production?"
"Artishooo! I guess so. You know, Jol, when you consider that all these stacks and stacks of duplicated stuff stored away here for lord knows how long were all turned out on cranky old machines that dripped ink and tore the paper to shreds every so many turns, it makes you marvel at the patience and devotion those people must have had to go on churning it out month after month."
"And it makes you marvel that the British Museum troubled to collect it all and store it away in these vaults."
"Yes, that's true. Poor luck for us they did. And just our luck to cop this job of cataloguing all this....mummified stuff. Thank God there were productions like this NOVAE TERRAE to lighten the task now and again!"
"Uhu, but that's not getting the job done. Give me the number of copies and anything else worth mentioning, then we'll get on to that stack of Church gossip."
"First copy brought out -- I can hardly read it, terrible duplicating .....'36. Says it's the organ of the Nuneaton Branch of the Science Fiction League, whatever that may have been. Twenty-nine issues."
"You know, I like that word "science-fiction", it so describes the minds of that time -- you know, just on the verge of scientific discovery, half thrilled, half proud, sort of cocky about the possibility of their ultimate conquest over everything, and that phrase seems to illustrate how they grabbed this science and raced away with it in their imaginations as if they had known it all their lives."

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"What on earth are you babbling about?"
"Oh Hell! What's the use of talking to you? Anything more to add?"
"Finished in the year 1939, just before the War."
"That all?"
"Changed editorship five times -- that's significant. Gets rather snooty towards the last about politicians."
"Everything you read about that time does. Things must have been pretty bad in those days. Remember that fellow Wells, either he had indigestion or there was something in what he was saying."
"He was a diabetic living on insulin - might have something to do with it."
"Most of those birds turn out brighter than the rest in the long run."
"You're a diabetic yourself aren't you?"
"How'd you guess?"
"By the polish on your boots. Now shut up and put this down. NOVAE TERRAE - a privately produced magazine that preceded the age of freed imagination by about two generations -- useful to students of the metamorphosis period. And now those Church gossips. Artishooooooooo! Lot 575,217."


Do you recognize the name Henry George Weiss? Or Mrs. Cleveland Wright? Or Harl Schoepflin, or Roger Sherman Hoar? They are the real names of Francis Flagg, Lilith Lorraine, Harl Vincent, and Ralph Milne Farley respectively.

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Mr. Wells's Staircarpet

"It is only with great effort that I restrain myself from making rude remarks about "Novae Terrae" reporters and Wells' stair-carpets." - D.R.Smith

"How nice to know that H.G.Wells has a green staircarpet." - S. Youd.

From Forrest J. Ackerman

At long last I do my duty and comment on NOVAE TERRAE. I must admit myself a number of that exasperating majority which is the Procasti-Nation.

I think it is really that September 1938 cover that caused me to overcome my inertia. "A.D. 2000 - The Last Militarist - Thank God!" Say, that's rich. I sure laft. Well done Williams! I suggest a sequel "A.D. 2000 - The Last Religionut - Thank Science!".

I do not appreciate your announcement that the mag. may be moribund. Short time ago we closed our dear Madge's eyes; now reliable old Aunty (NT) is seriously ill, U say. Rather, her readers. Same old Apathyarn.

But I am delited Aunty is not so old-fashioned as to fear fresh viewpoints, articles of a scientifictional nature on economic advancement, &c., rather featuring sociological essays and facing the future. Stolon! Bravaj "Novaj Teroj" (Ad Astra, Brave "New Worlds" -- as it appears in the scientifictionalanguage Esperanto, universal auxiliary tongue of tomorrow.)

The Martian Crisis - From Eric S. Needham

You say that an 'open mind' is desirable. I gloomily submit that you can't tell on open mind from a vacant one.

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Science-Fiction in the U.S.S.R from Donald A. Wollheim

Birchby's analysis of the evolution of the science-fiction reader is essentially correct. It is precisely what the Michelists have been saying. I can prove the "Daily Worker" reviewer wrong by referring N.T. readers to the only nation in the world run under communist ideas -- the Soviet Union. What is the attitude of the Soviet Union to science-fiction?

The Communists don't like Mr. Wells and they don't like books giving gloomy views of the future. H.G.W's "The Croquet Player" and his "Things to Come" are examples of the same type as "Chaos". What the D.W. reviewer said about one would apply to the others. Yet these two works of Wells have only recently been published in the USSR by the State Publishing House in a Russian translation in a single volume entitled "The Face of the Future". Reviews in Russian English-lanaguage periodicals were definitely unfavorable. But they were published and are on sale. Try and get them in Germany!

But even further. I have on hand a clipping from a New York paper dated March 1933 and emanating from Moscow. It tells of the plan of Vassily Katanian to publish a regular planned output of s-f books. He described it as "the popularization of scientific ideas by presenting them in the form of romance". After citing Jules Verne he said "we hope to continue in the future the scientific research of the present". This was to be done by presenting to Soviet youth a regular quantity of good s-f books. The books were to be written by selected able writers who would collaborate with scientists so as to get correct science, quality of writing and scope of imagination. As far as I have been able to determine this plan is still working.

Thus the remark of one British Communist against s-f is countered by the actions of Soviet Communists fostering science-fiction. In plain words, the Soviet Union thus becomes the

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only nation on the face of the earth to recognize science-fiction and its place in education and imaginative stimulation, and to officially take steps to propagate it and spread it. I, for one, cannot do otherwise than to heartily applaud such action.

Old Stewart Smith - from D. R. Smith

Fancy preserving a copy of the present-day "Amazing" in the cylinder addressed to our remote posterity! Let's hope the people of that far-off age will not be able to read English. I think all one can say about the American panic is "These Americans!" The gullibility of the ordinary man surpasseth understanding. In the 'Daily Mail' (the most degenerate of all English newspapers) a description appeared of an interesting example of mass-hysteria in America. Under the influence of swing 'music' played by the orchestras of Benny Goodman and Rudy Vallee about 200 dancers went into a sort of epileptic frenzy from which only cold water from a fireman's hose could arouse them. These Americans!

The enthusiastic R. Wilson Jr. is not far out when he calls WFT's series 'whizzies'.

Things I shall not buy -- The Scientificetcetera. I deplore the habit, apparently popular at SFA branch meetings, of using good music as a background for films. Heaven keep me from ever having to listen to "Tannhauser" while watching irrelevant flickering shadows on a screen, though I suppose one could close one's eyes.

Too Bad - from John F. Burke

Readers letters as usual unbelievably dull.

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by Frank D. Wilson

(Note: The following article is reprinted exactly as received.)

We call ourselves the "Science-fiction Association" We are the bulk of science-fiction, we have branches working in severall different parts of Brittain, we have the most enthusiastic of all science-fiction fans in our organisation, we are science-fiction's whole! But, are we dictators? do we tell the magazines what to do and how to do it? We do not, all we do is attend meetings, write and read science-fiction, and do hardly anything to improve the magazines that are the reason for science-fiction and the "science-fiction Association."

If a fan writes a letter of constructive criticism to a badly run science-fiction magazine, they sometimes print it, but they cut it down so that it appears ridiculous. Which is openly ridiculing the Association! We do nothing about it, you must remember that we are powerful, we have Fans...Fans...Fans...and more fans behind us. Then we should tell the magazines what to do and they should do it, Editor Campbell seems to take no notice of us, and we boost his magazine, ASTOUNDING is the best selling science-fiction magazine today, and why? is it because we boost it...? The New AMAZING is altogether against our policy this magazine wants moulding into shape, and if it is not moulded into shape pretty soon, I for one will discontinue buying it. Thrilling Wonder is another not so hot magazine hardly any fan likes this magazine. but they do take some notice of us, but, the magazine only costs I5 Cents! and you can't produce a worth while magazine at that price.If the Thrilling Wonder companion is to be of the same type they might as well not publish it. Marvel Science Stories is a promising magazine if they take notice of us and if they stop printing those nightmares by Henry Kuttner!

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As for Tales of Wonder the first British science-fiction magazine, it is all reprints, and do we want reprints? I say no...not if first hand stories are obtainable...and they are! and they are good too! but Gillings rejects them with silly excuses, the S.F.A. can not back up a magazine like that. FANTASY has now come out and this is a vastly promising magazine, Stanhope Sprigg will take notice of us and if he does we in turn will boost his magazine and a good sale of same will be the result. We are in a position to dictate! we should dictate? why don't we? after all we compose of the realy keen fan...the fans who matter! Then let us start. Now. TO MOLD THE SCIENCE-FICTION MAGAZINE INTO SHAPE!

by Frank Edward Arnold

Time was when fans from England, Australia, New Zealand, etc., used to complain that it was always the U.S. marines who came to save the world. If the armed forces of other countries happened to encounted the Martians or Jovians or skunk-men-from-the-bottom-of-the-ocean they invariably took a hell of a towsing and retired discomfited. True enough, but there was one classic exception in which the British Navy figured in destroying the Martians. It is still widely praised in America and was one of the most successful reprints in AMAZING STORIES. It was "Station X."

Even those who have read the book rarely think to mention that Station X was a British possession, that the hero was a British scientist, and that only a few foreign ships arrived for the big battle at the end. The story is good reading to this day. Only a couple of references to the German Navy indicate that it was written before the War.

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Nobody seems to know whether the author, G. McLeod Winsor, was an Englishman or whether he wrote anything else except "Vanishing Men." There was one 100% American author, however, who wrote a classic in which the entire action takes place in England. This author is Victor Rousseau and his story "The Messiah of the Cylinder," printed in England under the title "The Apostle..." This story opens in laboratories in Croyden, the hero is a Sir Spafforth somebody, and even when the hero's party wake up two hundred years later they find the world is still more or less centred on London, which is the entire scene of the action. This author spends most of his career writing Westerns and thrillers, I believe, but even if he is a French Canadian, as his name might suggest, this story is an unusual one.

Aside from contributions from English authors (who generally leave their localities and nationalities in obscurity) there are, or have been, quite a few others by American authors with an English background. A few years ago, A. Hyatt Verrill wrote "Dirigibles of Death", a hectic yarn about a dastardly attack on the British Empire. The tale was pleasantly told in the first person, and only a Cockney policeman's insistance on putting his haitches in exactly the wrong place ("Hi ham getting hout hof hit hat once!") spoilt the atmosphere. Probably the most frequent user of English backgrounds is August W. Derleth, the evergreen and seemingly inexhaustible contributor to WEIRD TALES. He may or may not be an Englishman, but if not he has an astonishing familiarity with London and the suburbs. Nearly all his adventures take place in Hampstead, St. John's Wood and district.

Perhaps the finest Weird Tale of England by an American author (or rather, authoress) was Hazel Heald's "Horror in the Museum." Her tale commenced in Madame Tussaud's, and it took us through many parts of London before it came to a gruesome climax in a little cellar somewhere in the West End.

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by Dave McIlwain.

(Ed.'s Note:- Readers may find this questionnaire more to their taste than the serious one in a recent issue.)

There are 4 possible answers to each question. For the first correct solution received at this office we will award a deckle-edged gob-stopper, complete with lead-lined container and instruction booklet.

1) The creator of "The Moon Pool" was....
a) Our dog. (?)
b) Tortured to death by a Martian.
c) Out on bail at the time.
d) Worthy of Merritt. (ouch!)

2) NOVAE TERRAE is....
a) The great grand-uncle of Nova Pilbeam.
b) Punk Awful!
c) A Russian swear-word.
d) Something the cat brought in.

3) The Necronomicon was...
a) The horse that won the Derby in 1901.
b) Overdone!
c) KO'd in three rounds.
d) A machine that showed pornographic pictures.

4) Wesso is....
a) Chinese for "scram".
b) A little known breed of gorgonzola.
c) About the worst of the lot.
d) A new make of anti-knock elbow grease.

5) Wells is noted for...
a) Its fireworks.
b) Their stagnancy.
c) Their distaste of Jonah.
d) His green stair carpet.

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Review of ASTOUNDING SCIENCE-FICTION for December 1938
by Ted Carnell

September and October issues of the No. 1 mag were supposed to be the outstanding of the year, but if you like your literature well-written and not stodged up with science, as I do, you'll agree with me that this December issue tops the year.

Since de Camp heralded Hyperpelosity in April John W. has rated a new twist to ASTOUNDING's literature, featuring Ra for the Rajah, The Tramp, Double! Double!, Hunger Death, The Einstein Inshoot, and numerous other yarns with the stress upon adventure and writing ability, all of which have tended to keep the "heavy science" in the background -- thank Heaven.

December brings A Matter of Form by Horace L. Gold. Need I rave? For just as Bill Temple's yarn in TOW will long be remembered as the cat story, so will Gold hold the honours for *the* dog yarn. An "Astounding Nova" yarn, as you will discover when reading the issue.

The Ephemerae a very poor Hamilton yarn, which never ought to have seen publication in this mag.

Cover yarn *The Merman* by de Camp is a beauty, with superb writing as well, and I was pleased to note that de Camp will have another Johnny Black yarn in the January 1939 issue.

Helen O'Loy, just a simple robot story, but put over so excellently by Lester del Rey that you may even forget that it is a robot at all.

M. Schere has another "different" story in Let Cymbals ring, and just to pile the agony up if you want super-science Kent Casey dopes out another Kelton adventure in They Had Rhythm, a "jitterbug" story of another planet.

In fact the only super-science in the issue is in Schachner's Simultaneous Worlds and you probably know my views on Nat's writings already. However, this two-parter definitely is up to the

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standard of his Sunworld of Soldus -- in fact the idea is excellent, but the super-super-super business palled a long time ago with me.

First part of Nuisance Value by Wellman looks good, but I shan't read the portion until next month.

OPINION....a three star excellent issue.


Sidney L. Birchby, G. Ken Chapman, Philip S. Hetherington, H. Lennox, Alex Miller, David McIlwain, Douglas W. F. Meyer, Eric S. Needham, E. F. Parker, J. Michael Rosenblum, D.R. Smith, Jack Speer, D. Webster.

Thirteen people answered the questionnaire in the anniversary issue of N.T. 13 out of 200 readers. Some persons might say that those thirteen were true fans.

The reasons they gave for their liking of s-f varied from pure excapism to interest in science, but the majority of arguments were escapist in nature.

Ten of the thirteen liked fantasy in general and their interests in this field were not confined specifically to science-fiction.

Three types of story predominated as favourite types: the sociological, the alien, and the purely scientific. Preferences were fairly evenly divided among the three.

Seven of the thirteen confessed to fairly marked technical scientific interest.

Some members of the families of five of the fans had a liking for fantasy; four for science-fiction. There were people with technical interests and ability in the families of five fans; artistic, in three.

(Continued on Page 20)

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Dear Editor,
I thought Dr. Spoof's "Tripehounds of N.B.G." was simply marvellous and one of the best yarns you have printed for years. I particularly liked the accurate science - Dr. Spoof sure is a credit to the ranks of the Ph.D's. The best bit was where the hero escaped from his dungeon on the planet Dhamgastley by disguising himself as the square root of minus one and walking through the wall. Let's have more stories like this! Yours,
Hank Honk,
Podunk, Pa.

I strongly object to the English villain in "Tripehounds of N.B.G." This sort of thing does not make for good relations between our two great nations. I am, sir,
Algernon Chutneigh, (Col. retired)
Somnoleum Club, Pall Mall, W.

Dear Sir,
The trouble with so many of your stories is that the science is all wrong. There was a very bad example in your last issue when one of your authors used a rocket ship to cross space. Surely he knows that space is a vacuum, and that therefore a rocket would have nothing to push against? This inexcusable ignorance on the part of authors creates a very bad impression among the more educated readers, such as Yours,
William Watnott,
Hollywood University,

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Dear Ed,
I would like to rite to anyone of my own age (6) who is interrestted in stamp colecting, birds nesting, or taddpole bredding. Yours,
Wal[e]ter Wortz,
Room 3819,
Floor 73251,
864923(b) 961st Street N.,
Detroit, Mich.

Dear Sir,
I would be glad to hear from any of your readers who are interested in Fermi-Dirac quantum statistics, modern music (particularly Shostakowitch and Honeggar) the writings of James Joyce and Gertrude Stein, and the tactical theory of three dimensional chess. I am, Dear Sir,
Bertram B. Branebulge,
Cloister 17,
Motheaton College,
Rampshire, England.


The sequel to "When Worlds Collide" telling how the survivors of the rocket flights to Bronson Beta lived, what they found and whom they met. A marvellous story.

PURPLE PLAGUE - Fenner Brockway.
A terrible plague sweeps over the world, and no cure can be found immediately. A doctor, to avoid the danger of contamination, establishes his laboratory on board a liner, isolating himself for 10 years. The description of social breakdown and revolution is unusually interesting.

EVEN A WORM - J.S.Bradford.
All animals, insects, and reptiles revolt against mankind!

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Those then are the facts that fandom has generously given to the world, facts to be handed down to posterity in awestruck admiration.

Those who are sufficiently interested will be able to draw their own conclusions.

Science-Fiction Association Section

Publications: Copies of the latest issue of "Tomorrow", "The Satellite" and "The Scientifictionaleodensian", as well as certain back numbers to be obtained fron HQ.

New Members: We are honoured this month by being able to welcome as a member such a famous literary celebrity as Mr. W. J. Passingham the renowned author. Members will join this office in the confident and hopeful anticipation that Mr. Passingham will remain with us for many years to come. We also take much pleasure in welcoming the undermentioned new members: Miss Nancy Featherstone (Hollywood, Cal.); E. L. Gabrielson (Liverpool); R. Holmes (Liverpool); and N. Weedall (Liverpool).

Acknowledgements: We gratefully acknowledge "The S-f-Leodensian" (Leeds); "Astronomische Rundschau" and "The Bulltin" (MIS); Madge's Prize" (Los Angeles SFA); and "The Science-Fiction Newsletter" (R. Wilson Jr.)

Back Number Service: Since its removal to London the above service has obtained a large collection of science-fiction magazines all of which are selling at cheap prices. The issues are mostly fairly recent ones but members are urged to send their want lists quickly to HQ in order to avoid disappointment. Lists will be kept tabulated and as magazines come in members will be advised of their price, condition, etc. No obligation is incurred by registering your want-list with this service.

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Executive Department: The new Assistant Executive Secretary of the SFA chosen by Council is Mr. Frank E. Arnold. He has now accepted the office and our membership will join in wishing him a successful term of administration.

London Branch: The Christmas meeting of this Branch will be held at the A.O.D. on December 18th and will take the form of a Social Supper. Members from the provinces will be greatly welcomed but are PARTICULARLY asked to give notice of their intention to attend by December 9th next. The cost will be 1/- per head. COME AND BRING YOUR FRIENDS TOO!

Congratulations: We are delighted to take this opportunity of congratulating Gerald Evans of Fforesfach upon his recent story acceptance by "Thrilling Wonder Stories". Member William F. Temple has also clicked an American acceptance with Amazing. Congratulations, too, Bill.

Hampshire Branch: It is noted that an SFA brance will be opened in Portsmouth early next year. A meeting in that city is already being arranged and will be attended, among others, by SFA Councillors Festus Pragnell, G. Ken Chapman and Ted Carnell. Full particulars of this project can be obtained from HQ.

Convention: The 1939 Convention of the SFA is already being considered at this office, and the first business of the new Council on January 1st next will be to choose the location at which it is to be held. We have already had letters from many of our members and from practically all the celebrities who attended last year, informing us that they will certainly be there again in 1939. In addition, most certainly a number of others, equally famous, will be attending. Full details of time and place will be printed here later....then IT IS UP TO YOU.

TOMORROW: The circulation of this magazine has never quite risen as high as was hoped, and unless steps are soon taken to increase same, there is a danger of a number of drastic changes in its

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format etc. having to be made. Members are urged to help as much as they possibly can by selling a few extra copies to their friends and relatives. DO HELP TO MAKE THIS GRAND MAGAZINE THE SUCCESS IT DESERVES. Copies, on sale or return terms, can be had on application to this office.

Headquarters: 25 Farley Road, South Norwood, LONDON, S.E.25, England.


Leeds Branch: Unique for the fact that it started punctually the November meeting began at 7 p.m. on Sunday Nov. 17th. Guests of honour were London members Arthur C. Clarke, William F. Temple, Eric C. Williams and Maurice K. Hanson. Following the brief opening remarks of Chairman Mayer, "Novae Terrae" editor Hanson set things moving by a talk in which he outlined the relation between weird and scientific fiction. Hot on his heels came BIS stalwart Arthur C. Clarke to give a recital of sf gramophone records. Assisted by his famous Ego he gave an admirable rendering of "Things to Come", "Isle of the Dead" and Dnieperstroi Power station". Next was a talk by William F.. Temple who in his inimitable way described how he and Hanson had attended a revival of early films including two s-f films. Then came the screening of a 20 minute documentary film "Conquest of the Air". While members were still wondering when a similar film about space would be made Eric Williams jumped to his feet and delivered a speech on the purpose of s-f societies. Then melody again rang forth when Arthur Clarke continued with the second part of his recital. To round off the programme was the screening of "The Spy" a UFA film directed by Fritz Lang from a story by Thea von Harbou.

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Next meeting, described as "Walpurgis Night" will be held on Dec. 4th. The club-room will be weirdly decorated, ghastly, unspeakable rites will be performed and horrific films will be shown. Children in arms not admitted; those under 16 only when accompanied by an adult.

Liverpool Branch: At the Nov. 11th meeting a goodly muster of members condemned the laxity of the Secretary and after some discussion it was moved that Mr. A. Bloom should take over the Secretaryship forthwith. The business commenced with members submitting titles of lectures to be delivered during the winter, and some very interesting subjects appeared to be covered. The meeting was pleased to learn that Ken Chapman was to pay the Branch a visit on Dec 11th and it is hoped to arrange an interesting syllabus for this visit. Mr. Johnson read out W.F.Temple's article on W. Gillings and some sysmpathy was accorded to the latter's trials with TOW. A Science Quiz contest was won by Mr. Ducker with the phenominal score of 39 out of 43. Finally, one new member, Mr. Heald, was welcomed bringing the total membership to 14.

London Branch: The chief features of the Nov. meeting were a talk by Frank Arnold on "Science and War" proving that science has not increased the atrocities of war, a fifty minute science talk by Les W. Smith on short-wave radio and its applications in which he dwelt on the possibilities of heat-rays, the difficulties of submarine radio, the mysteries of the Derringer effect, the public television booths that are being constructed in Russia, and the television telephone used between Berlin and Hamburg at the cost of £10 a call; and Mr. Walter H. Gillings on TOW. At 6.15 p.m. Wally was set going on this subject and about 7.30 was gently restrained. Various questions kept him occupied till 8 o'clock and after that there was an informal discussion on the subject until 8.45. Ted Carnell on Fans and Fanmags, and othe usual features were included in the meeting.

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All Wells' books now banned in Franco's slice of Spain... Ted Carnell wrote a fantasy story, skit on Ancient Egypt, sent it to LILLIPUT: it came back....Frank K. Kelly is writing for ESQUIRE on contract....The cover of ToW No5 is based on Paul's illustration for Coblentz's "Planet of Youth" achieving photographic effect....The authors in ToW No.6 will probably include Verrill, Williamson, Meek, Ed Earl Repp, Leinster - possibly the latter's "The Mad Planet"....Liverpool's SATELLITE reprints Les Johnson's "All is Dust" from "N.T." without acknowledgement; now threatens a sequel, "Is All Dust?".... There's a rumour going round Hollywood that Charlie Chaplin has asked H.G.Wells to write the script of his new film about "a bewildered little Jew who is mistaken for a dictator to whom he bears a likeness"....SFA-member F.H.P.Knight is exchanging letters with C.S.Lewis, author of new hit s-f novel "Out of the Silent Planet", resident of Magdalen College, Oxford.... World's most horrific film programme; "Dracula" and "Frankenstein" on together at London's Rialto. Ego Clarke reports doing big business....A play about martians, poking fun at the American panic, broadcast from London, Thurs. Nov.24th. A voice kept interrupting with "Remember, ladies and gentlemen, this is only a work of fiction!"....Everest-climber F.S.Smythe gets fantastic story, introducing the Abominable Snowmen, in PICTURE POST dated Nov.19th. It was Smythe who squashed the Amateur Author's Circle's story about these gentlemen by proving that they were Giant Pandas!....Cashing in on Martian scare, Universal cut its recent film serial "Flash Gordon's Trip to Mars," spliced in extra shots, and called it "Mars Attacks the World." Paramount are planning war-scare prophecy picture "Invasion!"....THE TIMES, reviewing new omnibus "The Tales of Algernon Blackwood," says: "Minds and spirits that are in revolt against the ordinariness, material explicability, the depressing sequence of cause and effect which constitute all their experience, seek in their reading the assurance that this commonplace world is only an appearance below which the wildest, strangest, most unlikely things may be happening".....

By S. Youd

Awake! For Campbell from the Bowl of Night
Has flung the Stone that puts our Fears to Flight
And Lo! Astounding's Editor has caught
A brilliant Halo and a Crown of Light.

Dreaming when Dawn's Left hand was in the Sky
I heard a voice within Astounding cry,
"Awake, my Little Ones, and read your fill
Before with Top-Notch from your ken I fly."

And as the Dawn broke, those who lounged about
Requested with a rather vulgar shout
Williamson and McClary once again
And Lo! The Rabbits from the Hat came out!

Now M.S.S. reviving old Desires
The high-brow fan to Solitude retires
Where the deft Hand of Stanhope from his Desk
Puts out, and Gillings on the Ground expires.

Gernsback, indeed, is gone with all his wiles,
And Sloane no longer on his Children smiles,
But still Astounding keeps its rosy Way,
And H.G.Wells still takes a 9 in tiles.

And Weinbaum's Lips are lock't; but in untrue
And furious Criticism the faithless Crew
Would sell again their Master for a Fee
Ten lines well-prominent to the Public View.

page 2:
Come take a Pen, and with the Fire of Spring
Caustic remarks at Raymond Palmer fling.
The new Amazing has flown but little Space
And yet already 'tis a hateful Thing!

And look - a thousand Authors with the Day
Came, but of that thousand few did stay
And that first Summer Month that heralded one,
Snatched Lovecraft and the well-lov'd Howard away.

But come with Uncle Sam, and leave the Lot
Of Gernsback and of Hornig quite forgot:
Let Wollheim lay about him as he will
Or Griffiths howl for Vengeance - heed them not.

With me reclined in some quiet Country Spot
With merry Comrades and a brimming Pot,
Where name of Ego Clarke is yet unknown,
And pity Wollheim and his scurvy Lot!

Here with a Science Book beneath the Bough
A Fountain-pen, a Book for Notes, and Thou,
Giving Advice and Criticism in full,
And Lo! My Story is an Epic now!

"How sweet the Days departed," whisper some:
Others - "How blest the Paradise to come!"
Ah, take the Cash in Hand and waive the Rest;
Nor heed the rumble of a Nazi Drum.

O Thou who didst with Wollheim and with Lowndes
Beset our not-so-happy Hunting Grounds,
Wilt not with Michelistic lunacy
Create more deep, if not more lasting Wounds?

page 3:
O Thou who fans from Baser Things didst lead,
Thine own inspired Prophecies to read,
For all the BOSH wherewith this Fantasy+
Is blackened - much Forgiveness shalt Thou need.


Listen again. One evening at the close
Of Gernsback, ere the Better Moon arose,
In editorial Offices I stood,
With the Clay Population round in rows.

And, strange to say, among the Earthen Lot
Some were quite literate, though most were not:
And suddenly one more intelligent cried -
"They must be fools to buy this blinking rot!"

The Editor no Question makes of Noes
But with Advertisement and Profits goes,
The Publisher who trims our Edges neat,
He knows about it all -- He knows -- HE knows!

The Tale that can with Logic absolute
The basic Laws of Being quite confute
The subtle Alchemist that in a Trice
Life's leaden Metal into Gold transmute.

And that introverted fool we call the Fan
Who, crawling coopt, the Universe would plan
Thou canst not help him back to Sanity,
For he is something less -- or more -- than Man.

But leave the Fools to wrangle, and with me
The Communistic Squabblers let be
And in some Corner of the Hubbub couch't
Make Game of that which would Game of Thee.

+ No reference to the magazine intended

page 4:
Alas, that Spring should vanish with the Rose!
That Youth's sweet-scented Manuscript should close!
The Nightingale that in the Branches sang,
Ah, whence, and whither flown again, who knows?

Lo! Some we loved, the loveliest and the best,
Who still in Summer's joyous green were dressed
Have left this barbarous and garish World
And ta'en their Talents to the Land of Rest.

They say the Schachner and the Kuttner stay
Upon the page where Weinbaum once held sway
And Lovecraft, dark Romancer, too is gone;
The works remain, the Master leaves the Play.

Ah Friend, could thou and I with Fate conspire
To grasp this sorry Scheme of Things entire,
Would we not shatter it to bits -- and then
Create the Magazine of our Desire?

Ah, Source of my Delight, that cannot wane,
Financial Funds are falling once again,
And soon the greedy Editors shall look,
Through this same Fandom after me, in vain.

Ah, Source of my Delight that soon must wane
My Temperature is rising once again:
Some day my bitter Wrath must find Release
And falling Fragments shall bedeck the Plain!

And when another Youth, too daft to learn,
To Fancy's perfumed Nothingness shall turn
Let him for me perform one solemn Rite,
A reverent word of praise for J. R. Fearn!