Checkpoint 20

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Checkpoint 20 is a news and reviews zine published by Peter Roberts, 87 West Town Lane, Bristol, BS4 5DZ, UK. Subs are available at 10/40p (2nd Class & Europe) and 6/$1 (foreign airmail). Sample copy free. US Agents: Charlie & Dena Brown, 3400 Ulloa St, San Francisco, Ca.94116. Australian Agent: David Grigg, Box 100, Carlton South, Victoria 3053. South African Agent: Nick Shears, 52 Garden Way, Northcliff 4, Johannesburg, Transvaal. (8/R1). Back Issues: vol I: sample, 1, 4/5, 6/7, & 8/9; vol II: 00, 0, 1 to 20. Quantities vary, though the price is the same, namely 4/10p or 6/50¢ (overland). News this issue from: Lisa Conesa, Ian Williams, Eric Bentcliffe, Tony Triggs, Dave Rowe, Gerald Bishop, David Grigg, and others.

29th July 1972. Restormel Press Publication: 63.

EUROCON 1: (A report from Dave Rowe) "Fred Hemmings, Howie Rosenblum, and myself arrived in Trieste in a beaten-up Morris Minor, a monument to British Engineering and made of thirteen years' accumulation of rust and dust, which just made the 2000 mile journey there and back. At our first camp site in Trieste we met Belgian fan, Claude Dumont, his wife Yvette, dog Jan, and two children; they'd brought their duplicator, as they had at Heicon, and once again spent the con publishing conreps and one-shots. I even got a mention in the first one and had, with John Brunner, to master the French typewriter's key-board to help fill the second. The Dumonts couldn't speak English and we couldn't speak French; but mime, repeating, and mutual fanac saw us through.

Tuesday we moved to another site. The sunshine had turned to rain and wind; Trieste, we found, was famous for its wind. In Maritime Station (a sea terminal built of marble and stone which looked like a municipal town hall) we met Nigel Haslock in fawn 1930s football shorts and 1/2 R Cruttenden, beaming as usual. They were both shifting furniture and artwork for the con. I use the term 'artwork' loosely, since it turned out to be either excellent or horrible, mainly the latter; this included the Salvador Dali which he spued up in an off-moment back in '39. Some of the sf art for covers and posters, however, more than made up for this, though kept apart from the 'Mastra Internationale d'Arte Fantascientifica'! Unfortunately in order to afford the con hall, a colour programme, and so on, the con committee needed the art show and film festival; this led to some art critic saying what went where, artists demanding that their artwork be moved or that more pieces be displayed, and suchlike.

A display of artwork and fanzines to be voted upon by the con attendees for the Europa Awards was moved into a room behind the speakers' platform and could only be reached when the programme wasn't on and the caretaker wasn't looking. The latter, by the way, looked like a plump docker and had lost his voice, sounding like Donald Duck with laryngitis; he gave his many directions with a series of whistles, clucks, and claps.

The programme, as usual, started at least half an hour late and the introduction was in Italian, French, and German, so I've no idea what was said. John Brunner then gave his Guest of Honour speech which, amongst other things, attacked the translators of sf novels, thus starting things off on a good international note. The next piece was in French, giving me a good excuse to try on the portable translators; these were like transistor radios with earpieces and the idea was to dial the appropriate language. It may sound simple; but nobody told us which language was on which number, the power of some of the models varied considerably, and the translators themselves often had trouble keeping up with the speaker.

I won't try to report on the programme, since it quickly descended into chaos. Instead I'll talk about what really made the con: meeting the fans. There was a party, for example, in the dungeons of the Castelio di San Giusto where the Mayor showed me round and we listened to an over-amplified group; the French fans were freaking out with gusto and the Anglo-Italian mob were doing their best as well. The next night there was a party in the Museum of Modern Art and I was introduced to some young Italian fans who were forming the Club Padovano SF. We had a great time discussing the writing of sf and the works of, believe it or not, Eric Frank Russell. The British fans, however, had to leave en masse as there was only one car and we moved to a bar near Vernon Brown's hotel where the party in fact continued, since a troop of seventeen international fans descended upon us.

The following day Fred Hemmings and I managed to see some of the films, including a Canadian cartoon, 'Evolution', which we've decided to show at the OMPAcon, if possible. Other films included a beautiful send-up, 'Beware, The Blob!' and a Stanislaw Lem film (not Solaris, which wasn't in fact shown).

On Saturday I actually saw some of the programme, namely Forrest J. Ackerman. His projectors didn't arrive, however, and he spent an hour improvising a speech which he gave slowly and with a lack of humour to help the interpreters. When the projectors arrived he had to interrupt his talk to make way for two other items. That was typical of the con.

By this time many fans had disappeared and the audience for the last item on Sunday evening was almost non-existent. In the morning, however, we had a chance to say what we thought about the Eurocon. The general opinion was that it was a first attempt at a genuinely international con; but it wasn't fannish enough and would have been better if held in one large hotel, instead of being spread out all over the place. These are the faults that will need correcting by the second Eurocon in Brussels, 1974 (Fred Hemmings is UK Agent)." (Dave Rowe)

TRUFANNISHNESS: Michel Feron, well-known Belgian fan, smashed his car at Trieste, but refused to go to hospital until the con was over. He seems ok, however, and intends coming to the Novacon by 'plane. Brum, beware...

FANZINES RECEIVED: Those that are particularly recommended are asterisked.

*Beardmutterings 2(28pp:A4:p). rich brown, 410-61st St, Apt D4, Brooklyn, NY.11220, USA. Faanish and personal. (sample free – no subs)

Cor Serpentis 3 (38pp:1/8o:p). Carey Handfield, 2 Banoon Road, South Eltham, Vic.3095, Australia. MUSFA journal – sf (Foyster, &c) (50¢)

Fanews 53/4 (12pp:A4:sd). Uwe Sitzenstock, 3321 Salzgitter-Ohlendorf, Gartenweg 2, Germany. In German. Newszine (sf/fannish) (10/3.70dm)

Forthcoming SF Books 8 (4pp:A4:d). Joanne Burger, 55 Blue Bonnet Ct, Lake Jackson, Texas 77566, USA. New US book lists. (3/$1 airmail)

Haverings 52 (10pp: 1/4 o:d). Ethel Lindsay, 6 Langley Av, Surbiton, Surrey, KT6 6QL. Comments on fanzines received. (6/40p)

*Locus 115 (10pp:A4:d). Charlie & Dena Brown, 3400 Ulloa St, San Francisco, Ca.94116, USA. Sf newszine. UK Agent: Malcolm Edwards, 75a Harrow View, Harrow, Middx. (10/£1.50 airmail)

*Locus 116 (10pp)

*Macrocosm 3 (42pp:A4:d). Rob Holdstock, 15 Highbury Grange, London N5. Sf fiction. (John Brosnan, Bryn Fortey, Jack Marsh, &c) (15p)

Madcap 1 (24pp: 1/4 o:d). Peter Presford & Pete Colley, 10 Dalkeith Rd, Sth. Reddish, Stockport, SK5 7EY. General. (Free?)

*Maya 4 (32pp: 1/4 o:d). Ian Maule, 59 Windsor Tce, South Gosforth, Newcastle on Tyne, NE3 1YL. Fannish. (Ian Williams, John Piggott, &c) (20p)

1220 (9pp: 1/4 o:d). Brian Robinson, 9 Linwood Grove, Manchester, M12 4QH. A one-shot by the editors of Hell and Lurk. (free)

Rataplan 9 (20pp: 1/4 o:d). Leigh Edmonds, PO Box 74, Balaclava, Vic.3183, Australia. General. (Lesleigh Luttrell, &c) (free?)

Scottishe 62 (23pp: 1/4 o:d). Ethel Lindsay, (see Haverings). Fannish and general. (Ella Parker, &c) (15p)

*SF Commentary 26 (120pp:A4:d). Bruce Gillespie, GPO Box 5195AA, Melbourne, Vic.3001, Australia. UK Agent: Malcolm Edwards (see Locus). Sf articles and criticism. (Gillespie on Aldiss, Gillam, Suvin, &c) (9/£1.50)

*Speculation 30 (74pp: 1/4 o:d) (Peter Weston, 31 Pinewall Av, Kings Norton, Birmingham 30. Sf and fannish. (Brunner, Phil Strick, Bulmer, &c) (20p)

Zimri 3 (82pp:A4:d). Lisa Conesa & Andrew Stephenson, 54 Manley Rd, Whalley Range, Manchester, M16 8HP. General. (Aldiss, Hay, &c) (10p)

FANZINE NEWS: First, two forthcoming fanzines: "Blazon, The Magazine of Science Fiction and St Fantony, is due out later this year; edited by Eric Bentcliffe, lay-out by Eddie Jones. The first issue will contain material by Bob Shaw, Ken Bulmer, Ted Tubb, Larry Niven, John Owen, 'Hurstmonceux and Faversham' (a new *Harrison* saga), the late Doc Weir, Ron Bennett, and Jan Jansen. Artwork by Eddie, Atom, and Jeeves. The first issue will be litho and have a print run of 500; it will be sent out FREE, courtesy of the Knights of St.Fantony. To ensure getting a copy, write to (or send your fanzine to) Eric at 17 Riverside Crescent, Holmes Chapel, Cheshire, CW4 7NR." Eric adds that material for future issues is welcomed and that these will be available for 'the usual'. // "Paranoid 3, special King Kon issue, is due in a few weeks time," says Ian Maule (address under Maya above). It includes "conrep from Thoth Penman, feelthy pictures of Goblin in the nude, locs, and an article from Leery Chortle..." // Haverings, says Ethel Lindsay, is now going on a quarterly schedule. // My own Egg 6 has appeared, by the way, though I misjudged the print-run and I doubt whether there are any spare copies. Write and see if you're interested, however.

BOOK NEWS FOR SF FREAKS: (Gerald Bishop's column) "Reminder, following my introductory remarks this time last year: in spite of the vast resources of Aardvark House (International) Data Services Division these lists are only offered as a guide, and books listed herein may not appear on schedule, or ever; such is the whim of the publishers (hopefully) of said books. But all the following have been noted in various sources as being scheduled for publication.

JULY/Hardback: Dobson: Ipomoea (Rackham), New Writings In SF 20 (ed. Carnell). Gollancz: Other Days, Other Eyes (Bob Shaw), A Pocketful of Stars (ed. Knight). Hodder: Who Needs Men? (Cooper). Lib Assn: The Tale of the Future (I.F.Clarke). Sidgwick & Jackson: Volteface (Adlard), New Writings In SF 21 (ed. Carnell).

Paperback: Ballantine/Pan: The Worm Ouroboros, The Mezentian Gate, A Fish Dinner in Memison (E.R.Eddison). Faber: Best SF Stories of Brian Aldiss. NEL: I Will Fear No Evil (Heinlein), Battle of Sydney (John Vader). Penguin: Brave New World (Huxley), Animal Farm, 1984 (Orwell), Titus Groan (Peake), Space Hostages (Fiske). Sphere: Lords of the Starship (Geston), Pawns of Null-A (van Vogt). Tandem: Rocannon's World (le Guin).

AUGUST/Hardback: Gollancz: The Wind From The Sun (Clarke), Of Time And Stars (Clarke), The Gods Themselves (Asimov), Android At Arms (Norton). MacGibbon & Kee: 334 (Disch). Sidgwick & Jackson: Destiny Doll (Simak), The Lost Worlds of 2001 (Clarke – also paper edition).

Paperback: Ballantine/Pan: Don Rodriguez, Beyond The Fields We Know (Dunsany). Bantam/Corgi: The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit (Bradbury), Star Trek 6 (Blish), Soldier Erect (Aldiss). NEL: The Airs of Earth (Aldiss), Swords Against Death (Leiber), A Princess of Mars, Synthetic Men of Mars, John Carter of Mars, Escape on Venus, Pirates of Venus, Gods of Mars, Master Mind of Mars (Burroughs). Sphere: Year's Best SF 5 (ed. Aldiss & Harrison). Tandem: Vornan-19 (Silverberg).

SFBC: Prostho Plus (Piers Anthony)

((Gerald notes that the Penguins I added to his list in Checkpoint 16 did not appear – a fault of their 'forthcoming books' list, I fear; one that I'd like to add, however, is Peake's Captain Slaughterboard Drops Anchor (Academy pb) which I've not noted before, although it may have been around for some while. It does exist since I possess a copy – forked out 60p for it too...))


BOOKSELLERS: A couple of recent catalogues: Andromeda Book Co 17 (Rog Peyton, 131 Gillhurst Rd, Harborne, Birmingham, B17 8PG) contains cover and items of interest to Trekkies, plus de Camp checklist, plus huckster lists of new paperbacks (UK & US), few hardcovers & magazines, and war games. // 2nd list from David Turner (PO Box 2612, Menlo Park, Ca.94025, USA) is strong on used hard and paperbacks, new US hardbacks, Arkham House, Mirage, & Advent Press.

CoA (correction or better alternative to the one given last time): Sam Long, Box 4946, Patrick AFB, Florida 32925, USA. (US OMPAcon Agent).

PAPERBACKS RECEIVED: Upon returning to Bristol from Keele I was confronted with a massive pile of books from Pan/Ballantine and I'm still busy reading them. Hopefully, I shall be able to review them within the next couple of issues; but for the moment, let me bring to your attention Bob Shaw's The Palace of Eternity (Pan – 30p). An initial survey of the novel looked promising; it's divided into three parts: The Humans, The Egons, and The Syccans; and this rather led me to believe that each part would explore the same situation from the viewpoints of each group. Nothing quite so interesting is attempted, however, and the divisions are barely more than three long chapters in an adventure story, although each indicates a slight shifting of emphasis and provision of further knowledge. An uninteresting person, Tavernor, is caught up in an interstellar war between 'Humans' (I'd prefer 'human beings' rather than the adjective on its own, but still...) and 'Syccans'. In the course of the novel he uncovers some incredible facts about the nature of the war and the universe itself – or I should say, Bob Shaw uncovers those facts, since they're produced like 'deus ex machinas' whenever you're wondering what might happen next. The Palace of Eternity is competently written and will probably carry the reader along; but I warn you that you'll feel cheated by the time you've finished. The novel promises a lot and ends by giving you nothing.

PROJECTS PROFESSIONAL: Cornmarket Reprints (42 Conduit St, London, W1R 0NL) have sent along a catalogue of their 'History of the Future Series'. The titles have been listed in previous Checkpoints and I should just note that they're expensive (the cheapest is £3.40) especially since some are available in paperback anyway (Looking Backward, for example, is obtainable for 25p, whilst CR are asking £6 for it). To be fair, they do have new introductions by such as Prof.Asa Briggs and Prof. Tom Clareson and many of the titles are extremely obscure. Perhaps a few delicate suggestions to your local librarian might not go amiss? // The Cornmarket Reprint project acknowledges the help of the SF Foundation and George Hay is also active elsewhere, initiating the following (taken from a letter to Lisa Conesa): "Plans are going ahead for an animated film series for tv, based on James White's Space Hospital novels. These will be handled by HDH Films, London, in association with their partners in Paris and Milan." // Finally, from another letter to Lisa. Here's Brian Aldiss: "On Monday (10th July) Margaret and I drive away from here in £5000 worth of loaned BMW. I'm going to drive through Europe for the Daily Telegraph, down to the Dalmation Coast. It should be jolly. I've worked like a fiend on Billion Year Spree, now finished, and long for a change of scenery and that thrill of excitement in having all of Europe in front of the windscreen."

US BOOKS FOR AUGUST: (Joanne Burger) Ace: Perry Rhodan 16, Best from F&SF 18, The Black Star Passes (Campbell), Big Time (Leiber), The Omega Point (Zebrowski), Black Man's Burden (Reynolds). Ballantine: The Gold at the Starbow's End (Pohl), Starflight 3000 (Mackelworth), The Song of Rhiannon (Walton). Berkley: Chronopolis (Ballard), The Last Starship from Earth (Boyd). Avon: Macroscope (Anthony), Holding Wonder (Henderson). Lancer: The Return of Kavin (Mason), Overlay (Malzberg), Ensign Flandry (Anderson). SFBC: From This Day Forward (Brunner). Signet: Greybeard (Aldiss), Jack of Shadows (Zelazny). Pyramid: Falling Torch (Budrys). Doubleday: Perchance To Dream (Knight), Recalled To Life (Silverberg). Collier: Map of Narnia (Lewis).

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WEIRD TALES: Mary Legg sends news of some recent marriages: Mike Ashley, whose new wife is named Sue; Alan Chorley, ex-BaD Group; and Pam 'Storeybods' Storey who has married Captain John Bull and who may thus be moving to the Middle East. // Ian Williams and Ian Maule have been renewing contacts in Manchester with a recent visit to the MaD Group. // Dirce Archer, a well-known American fan in the past and chairman of the 1960 Worldcon, died on May 18th. She was 66. (Locus). // Sarf Efrican fans, Melanie & Christopher Muir, have enlarged fandom with the birth of a girl on July 17th. Congratulations to them all. // A play by Michael Irving is or was recently on at the Half Moon Theatre in London. It's called Dan Dare and is apparently attracting quantities of children. The Mekon, however, is played by a girl... // Dave Rowe met three French faneds looking for traders whilst he was in Trieste. They are: Henry-Luc Planchat (L'Aube Enclavee) 11 rue Bel-Air, 57000 Metz; Jean LeClerc, 17 rue des Vallees, 91 Brunoy (Cloac); and Dominique Planterruse (One Shot), 344 Morvan, 76 Bihorel, France. // The first anthology of indigenous South African sf is currently being compiled by Niels Christiansen.

OMPAcon: The first Progress Report has now appeared and lists 102 members, plus another 14 from OMPA itself. Fred Hemmings (20 Beech Road, Slough, SL3 7DQ, Bucks) will take 50p from you if you want to join OMPAcon, next year's British Easter convention. I was somewhat premature last time in announcing that it would be in Bristol; this seems likely, but has not yet been finalized. Fred also asks me to say that the Hawthorns Hotel was rejected as unsuitable as well as unavailable.

TOLKIEN STUFF: Tony Triggs notes that the music to the BBC Radio series, The Hobbit, has been issued on an lp, namely David Cain's Music (REC 91). The price is £1.99 and the record features the BBC Radiophonic Workshop and David Munrow with the Early Music Consort; music from The Jew of Malta and Much Ado About Nothing is also included.

NEXT ISSUE will be a rather large annish and will contain the Fan Poll results plus a number of reports from centres of fan activity over the last year. Only overseas subscribers will receive this airmail, I'm afraid, since the cost of posting trade and complimentary copies will be somewhat high.


CHECKPOINT II 20

from:

Peter Roberts....
87 West Town Lane
Bristol, BS4 5DZ,
United Kingdom...

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