Checkpoint 88

Barry Kent MacKay cartoon

Checkpoint 88 is produced by Peter Roberts, 38 Oakland Drive, Dawlish, Devon, UK. It's available for news, selected trades, interesting letters, fine old fanzines (send list first), or cash: 5/50p (UK & Europe), 5/$1 (America & Africa airmail), or 7/£1 (Australia & NZ airmail). Drawing by Barry Kent MacKay, lettering by Stu Shiffman. Restormel Press Publication: 129. Telephone: 0626 864718.

MAYA NOMINATED FOR HUGO: Or so an excited Rob Jackson tells me. To prove it he's now sent along a full list of the Iguanacon Hugo nominations:

Novel: The Forbidden Tower (M.Z.Bradley), Time Storm (G.R.Dickson), Dying Of The Light (G.R.R. Martin), Lucifer's Hammer (Niven & Pournelle), Gateway (Pohl).

Novella: "A Snark In The Night" (Benford), "The Wonderful Secret" (Laumer), "Aztecs" (McIntyre), "Stardance" (J & S Robinson), "In The Hall Of The Martian Kings" (Varley).

Novelette: "Ender's Game" (O.S.Card), "Prismatica" (Delany), "The Ninth Symphony of Beethoven &c" (Scholz), "The Screwfly Solution" (Sheldon), "Eyes Of Amber" (J.D.Vinge).

Short Story: "Jeffty is Five" (Ellison), "Lauralyn" (Garrett), "Dog Day Evening" (Robinson), "Time-Sharing Angel" (Tiptree), "Air Raid" (Varley).

(This dramatic & exciting listing continued over the page...)


Dramatic: Close Encounters Of The Third Kind, "Blood! The Life & Future Times Of Jack The Ripper"; The Hobbit; Star Wars; The Wizards.

Pro Artist: Vincent DiFate, Stephen Fabian, Kelly Freas, Rick Sternbach, & Michael Whelan.

Fanzine: Don-O-Saur, Janus, Locus, Maya, Sf Review.

Fan Writer: Charlie Brown, Don D'Ammassa, Dick Geis, Don Thompson, Susan Wood.

Fan Artist: Grant Canfield, Phil Foglio, Alexis Gilliland, Jeanne Gomoll, & James Shull.

The information also includes the spread of votes for nomination in each category which is interesting. The most ludicrous, not too surprisingly, is in the 'Dramatic Presentation' section where the highest nomination received 338 votes and the lowest nomination received just 8 votes. Even in the other categories, however, the number of votes required to secure a place on the ballot seems very low: 82-11 for 'Short Story', 53-15 for 'Fanzine', 23-14 for 'Fan Artist', and so on. 540 ballots were received altogether. I also have nominations for the other awards which I'll slip in later, if I have room. Iguanacon membership (supporting, entitling you to final voting rights in the Hugos) is $7.00 from Iguanacon, PO Box 1072, Phoenix, AZ 85001, USA.

NEW FANZINE GUIDE AVAILABLE: A new, revised edition of The Little Gem Guide To Fanzines has been published, complete with a genuine cover, as well as the usual introduction to fanzines and the address listing (with over 160 entries) & recommendations. It's got a cover price of 50p($1) to keep the libraries and other invoice-minded institutions at bay, but Checkpoint readers and other fans can get themselves a copy for 35p(75¢) directly from me (Three IRCs will do, or send me a dollar bill and I'll add the quarter on to your CP sub). Ten copies for £3.50($7.00) – rush your order to me without delay! Only huge piles left!

EVERYBODY MOVE: An extraordinary number of CoAs:

Pat & Graham Charnock, 4 Fletcher Rd, London, W4 5AY.
Roy Kettle, 8 Hendale Ave, London NW4 (temporary)
Eddie & Marsha Jones, 9 Cecil Rd, Prenton, Birkenhead, Merseyside, L42 9PF.
Eric Batard, B.P.44, 37006 Tours Cedex, France
Brian Earl Brown, 16711 Burt Rd (Apt 207), Detroit, MI 48219.
Denice Hudspeth, (as above)
JoAnne McBride, 13729 111A Ave, Surrey, B.C., V3R 2C8, Canada.
Leo Kindt, Spotvogellaan 45A, Postbus 87933, Den Haag, Holland
Niels Dalgaard, Horsekildevej 13, IV dør 3, DK-2500 Valby, Denmark
Carsten Schiøler, Brøndbyvestervej 142, st., DK-2600 Glostrup, Denmark
Jerry Kaufman, 303 16th Ave East (Apt 102), Seattle, WA 98112
Suzanne Tompkins, as above.
John & Eve Harvey, 55 Blanchland Rd, Morden, Surrey
Mike Scantlebury, 42 Barlow Moor Rd, Didsbury, Manchester 20
Gary Farber, c/o 606 15th St East, Seattle, WA 98112
Mary & Sam Long, 1338 Crestview Drive, Springfield, IL 62702
Martin Easterbrook, 191 The Heights, Northolt, Middx.
Brian Parker, Flat 58, Brooke House, Town Sq, Basildon, Essex

WEIRD FANZINE TALES: A few new titles have appeared since the publication of the latest Fanzine Guide:


Whilst fome affect the Sun, and fome the Shade,
Some flee the City, fome the Hermitage;
Their Aims as various, as the Roads they take
In Journeying to the Con; the Task be mine
To paint the gloomy Horrors of Heathrow;
Th'appointed Place of Rendezvous, where all
Thefe Travellers meet.

As I'm afraid was anticipated, the Heathrow Hotel was not a suitable site for the 1978 (or any other) British convention: the hotel was isolated, the prices high, the staff rude, and the management indifferent both to the convention and the individuals attending it. The con committee were firmly under the thumb of the hotel, and looked consequently more than a little nervous. I don't want to pillory them, since they're all good fans; but it was a bloody bad decision to hold the con at the Heathrow, and it's obvious that at least some of the committee (as well as ordinary attendees) realized this well in advance of the convention. Fortunately the con itself was, I reckon, quite enjoyable, despite the hotel and the various evils emanating from it – so all was by no means gloom and despondency.

On the Thursday before the con, I and several other fans enjoyed the hospitality of Greg Pickersgill & Simone Walsh; we all voyaged out to Heathrow to look the place over and see what was afoot. The hotel was a monstrously squat building on the perimeter of the airport, designed to avoid collisions with aircraft and to survive such collisions as might occur. Frightened by the prices in the hotel bar (bottled Guinness at £1 a pint, &c), we fled the hotel and discovered a nearby pub (called, believe it or not, The Air Hostess) where, in the company of other fleeing fans, we had a cheerful and not very sober evening.

On Friday the con started. A marginally cheaper bar opened up in a claustrophobic little room in the bowels of the hotel, alongside an equally packed book roon, and the fan room (presided over by Ian & Janice Maule). I'm not sure what finally took place in the fan room, but Simone Walsh's interview with Fan GoH, Roy Kettle, was an excellent and relaxed event, the firebell (only heard in the fan room) exodus a weird incident, and the room itself a cheerful nightly refuge from the hotel thugs.

Upstairs in the main con hall, I caught the annual Bob Shaw speech; the Fancy Dress parade (no worse than usual, despite the frequent appearances of Brian Burgess clad only in a jockstrap); part of a reasonable disco which seemed to close down remarkably early (thus sparing onlookers more than a brief glimpse at a bopping Roberts); a "Call My Bluff" quiz in which a team of pros (John Brunner, Ken Bulmer, & Chris Priest) failed to outwit a team of fans (Roy Kettle, Rob Jackson, & myself) in defining grotesquely obscure sf terms; and an auction which seemed to raise good sums of money for TAFF and GUFF (I particularly admired Rog Peyton's selling of a loose-leaf Astounding piecemeal, raising ludicrous sums for single pages).

Despite an early closing of the bar (1.00am or so), there were few room parties (partly thanks to American-style night staff on patrol), though Ron Bounds managed to keep a "Los Angeles in 81" bidding party going for most of the weekend. Saturday night, in fact, produced some hassles with the hotel (who'd not only closed the bars, but also the toilets!) but Sunday night was less strife-ridden, it being the thugs' night off.

The banquet, I'm told, was a success, though I was standing in the door-way when Chairman Kevin Smith announced that the con had made an unexpectedly large profit and that consequently the bar downstairs was serving free drinks – not having the swiftest of reactions, I was trampled in the rush (let it be known that the athletic Pete Weston was first down there, and, heeding my whimpers, fetched me a drink). Everyone, needless to say, was in a good mood on Sunday evening. All credit, therefore, to the committee for salvaging a good deal of the con from the wreckage caused by the hotel.

Attendance was high, with some 700 memberships sold. Professionals attending included Bob Shaw, Ken Bulmer, Chris Priest, John Brunner, Tom Disch, Marion Zimmer Bradley, Ted Tubb, Rob Holdstock, and GoH, Robert Sheckley. Leeds won the bid for the 1979 Eastercon, the London multi-media bid evaporating (partly, I understand, for lack of assistance) before the business meeting. Greg Pickersgill happily won the Doc Weir Award.

One footnote from Dave Langford: "A piece of artwork went astray at Skycon – Jim Barker's "Deafworld" from the Fan Room. Probably given to another art purchaser by mistake – or did two people think they'd won the bidding? Postage refunded if clarification and/or artwork can be sent here (22 Northumberland Ave, Reading, Berks, RG2 7PW)."


CHECKPOINT FAN POLL deadline: May 1st. Overseas fans voting, please list (1-5): Best UK fnz, fanwriter, fanartist; plus best cover, single issue, article.



Come out, Neville!



Peter Roberts
38 Oakland Dr

Printed Matter Reduced