Tuesday, October 23, 2012


Many Australian writers and fans will be reasonably familiar with names such as A. Bertram Chandler, Wynne Whitford, Norma Hemming, and George Turner. But how much do you actually know about these writers, and how much of their work have you read?

As I've stated recently, I'm on a journey of discovery - exploring Australia's rich SF heritage, down into caverns I never even knew existed. And I've been excited to read some great works by these authors.

Although I only started writing a couple of years ago, I've been reading SF for more than three decades. However, I was never involved in fandom until a couple of years ago. Heck, I didn't even know it existed. Some of these writers appear to have been still alive in Australia with us until only recently. If only I'd known.

Missed opportunities.

But these names only scratch the surface. I've recently discovered Tomorrow and Tomorrow by M. Barnard Eldershaw (The pseudonym of two women who wrote this SF novel in 1947). How about writers such as James Morgan Walsh, Erle Cox or even Catherine Helen Spence, author of 'A Week In The Future' (1888)? Australians will find her image on our $5 note.

We all know Aurealis, and Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine, but how about Thrills Incorporated, Science Fiction Monthly, Popular Science Fiction, Vision of Tomorrow or Void.

And so my quest into Australia's SF heritage continues. I'd love to hear any suggestions and recommendations from anyone who has journeyed this way before me.

p.s. If you can help me with ASIM #1, #4 and #20, please email me or leave a comment.
Some further resources I've discovered:

For more fantastic covers, check this out.

Far from Void: The History of Australian SF Magazines (1992) in Aurealis #7 ed. Stephen Higgins, Dirk Strasser

The MUP Encyclopaedia of Australian Science Fiction & Fantasy (1998) ed.  Paul Collins and Sean McMullen

Strange Constellations: A History of Australian Science Fiction (1999) Russell Blackford, Van Ikin & Sean McMullen


Gitte Christensen said...

This is a worthy quest indeed. Following the links, I'm tempted to dig up a few of those old works myself.

Russell B Farr said...

I have a complete set of Void, all 5 issues. Paul Collins gave me a copy of #1 at Aussiecon 3. I'm an Eidolon #2 short of a full set, however.

Steve Cameron said...

Curses, Russell. While I'm impressed, and slightly jealous, it really doesn't help me.

And, I must add, I need a copy of Sean Williams' New Adventures in Sci-Fi to bring my Ticonderoga collection up to date. (hint, hint)

And if anyone wants to donate a complete set of void, and an almost complete set of eidolon, I'd be very grateful :) hehehe