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BSFA Review: The Fantastic Editorials by Ted White

02/04/2024 20:52 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

The Fantastic Editorials cover

The Fantastic Editorials by Ted White

(Ansible Editions, 2023)

Reviewed by Graham Andrews

Roughly speaking, Fantastic was to Amazing what Unknown was to Astounding, what Beyond was to Galaxy, and Science Fantasy was to New Worlds. It should be said that I rather preferred the science-fantasy magazines to their more respectable companion magazines, although a certain amount of overlap did occur. Hence my predilection for F & SF… but I digress.

Abstracted from Ted White’s fortuitously quotable Foreword: “I became the editor of Fantastic and Amazing in October 1968 [publisher: Sol Cohen]. I left them in October 1978. But they were bottom feeders then, with little if any remaining reputations. I had to build them back up. I began by convincing Sol to push the reprints down to a single ‘classic’ story. Suddenly we were in business, with over 90% of our fiction brand new. Within a couple of years, the last reprint was gone.” And “build them back up” he slowly and surely did, both magazines being duly nominated for Hugo awards. Brian Aldiss’s Frankenstein Unbound (a two-part serial in Fantastic: March–May 1974) was deservedly short-listed for the Booker Prize, but undeservedly didn’t win. Ditto Will-O-the-Wisp (September 1974), by Thomas Burnett Swann—“a pleasure to read and a delight for me to publish.” The list of classic short and long fantasy fiction, by the likes of Michael Moorcock and Jack Vance, would reach from There to Back Again.

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Review from BSFA Review 22 - Download your copy here.


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