Last week saw the publication of Roger Ebert's memoir, Life Itself
, not to be confused with Elaine Dundy's memoir, Life Itself!
In the book, Ebert recalls his long ago interest in science fiction fanzines and writes, "I have always been convinced that the culture of fanzines contributed crucially to the formative culture of the early Web and generated models for websites and blogs. The very tone of the discourse is similar, and like fanzines, the Web took new word coinages, turned them into acronyms, and ran with them."
Here are some of Ebert's fanzine contributions, the poems "Contention" and "My Last Annish", both from Dick Lupoff's Xero
(1960-63), which won a Hugo Award in 1963.
"Contention" is illustrated by Sylvia White, then the wife of writer-editor Ted White. For Xero
's articles on comic books, Sylvia skillfully transferred comic book artwork to mimeograph stencils. As art director of Xero
, I described to Larry Ivie how I wanted a drawing of Ted White standing next to his mimeo machine. Larry quickly did a pencil sketch which I later inked and then transferred to mimeo stencil. (Several people are currently trying to locate Larry Ivie. Does anyone know his whereabouts? His last known address was in Millbrae, California. Someone who went to his house recently reported it was empty.)
Metropolitan Mimeo was the name of Ted's shop on West 10th Street, where he produced fanzines along with occasional jobs from Greenwich Village locals during the early 1960s.
The copy of "My Last Annish" here is courtesy of Trap Door
editor Robert Lichtman, who writes, "Roger seems to have had a lot of poetry published in various fanzines over the years, especially in Yandro
(but also more appearances in Xero
). He was a book reviewer for my first fanzine, Psi-Psi,
from 1959 to 1961. His first nostalgia essay about his childhood Princess Theater appeared there, too. He published two issues of a dittoed fanzine, Stymie
, circa 1959-60. I have the second issue--most contributions are by him." Ebert mentions both Stymie and Yandro
in Life Itself.
To read Lichtman's Trap Door
, go here
Larry Ivie also did science fiction illustrations. Here's one illustrating Fred Saberhagen's "The Long Way Home" in Galaxy Science Fiction
Labels: dick lupoff, larry ivie, robert lichtman, roger ebert, sylvia white, tachyon, xero