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Loc on SF Commentary 93 (Bruce Gillespie, ed.) - Lloyd's Locs Box - Fanzine letters of comment
January 9th, 2017
01:19 pm


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Loc on SF Commentary 93 (Bruce Gillespie, ed.)
Dear Bruce:

Thank you for the paper edition of SF Commentary 93, a wonderful Australian souvenir. The least I can do is try my best to write up a decent letter of comment. Get a head start on things, too…

I have noticed that more and more, science fiction is being marketed and aimed at children, the same way the space industry is. Both are something for the kids to enjoy, as far as I see it. Why are they not being marketed to adults? Perhaps these days, they are not being seen as adult interests. Maybe they’re just dreams, and unrealistic ones at that. Yet, dreams have helped realize the world we have. Maybe such dreams are only for corporations to make money from, and our imagination is being bred out of us. We are being slowly but surely trained to be mere consumers, imagination free and just a cog in the economic engine. I so hope I am wrong. (Where did that come from?)

I am finding that my interests are starting to change. Fandom has been part of my life for most of my life, but here, it looks like it is starting to fade.  It might just be me, but if there is a network any more, my connections to it are fraying. We don’t go to Worldcons any more, as they are simply too expensive. We’ve left conrunning after 30 years, and now, we are more into steampunk and being steampunk vendors. Maybe that’s just a natural progression. In the long run, we’ve got to enjoy ourselves, and where we do that is losing what importance it may have had.

(This is stream-of-consciousneess writing, based on your own writing about your own origins. I can look back at that, and wonder if I have graduated through all of Bloch’s 7 stages, and am finding new stages for myself.)

My life in fanzines has also been changing, too. I can now say that I have been in the locol of fanzines for 35 years, yet have never really been a part of any fanzine community. I have always been on the outside looking in, no matter where I’ve been. Again, it might just be me, but no matter what I’ve done, response is often tepid, and a few times, unfriendly. Would it matter much if I did not respond to fanzines the way I have? Believe me, I appreciate the efforts to keep this oldest of fan activities going. I am trying to do my part in that, too.

While I have enjoyed a lot of the novels about Mars listed here, my favorite was Kim Stanley Robinson’s Mars trilogy, with the added fourth book. It seemed about a logical as it could get, given the illogic of the average human being, and given the possibility of huge water reserves on Mars just under its surface. I could have used another book or two in that series. (Just curious…the cover artist for Brian Aldiss’s The Saliva Tree…looks like something Joe Mayhew might have created.)

You have a wonderful selection of books listed, and I wish I could read even one of them, but I do not have the money to get them, nor these days the time to read them. I also admit that the inclination to read them is fading. The more I feel I cannot take part to even a small extent, the more the interest fades.

I daresay this is probably the strangest loc I have every written, and the fact I composed most of it around 2am local time must have something to do with it. A little insomnia may have put strange ideas in my head. Maybe it’s just better to put this in the WAHF file…and I will try again with the next issue. We will see you then.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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