Oh, fandom. This particular level of engagement continues to delight and delightfully horrify me. (…Supernatural.) But we tend to think that fandom started with the Internet, which is false. My fannish foremothers were already despairing of Mary Sues long before I was born. Today, I thought we’d highlight at three works dealing with pre-Internet fans that I’ve read for the blog.
Among Others by Jo Walton
So many books feature a bookworm, but she rarely talks about what she reads with the true passion of a bibliophile or the engagement of a fan. In Among Others, Mor does both in the 1970s. It’s a treat for book lovers and fans alike–often one and the same!
Harry, a History by Melissa Anelli
Okay, so technically this isn’t pre-Internet, but Harry Potter was one of the first fandoms that developed almost entirely online, rather than transitioning to the new medium. Melissa Anelli walks us through the development of one of the fan sites in the community, as well as the development of the books themselves.
I’ll be honest–Ringers is, more or less, silly. But as a Ringer to my core, I loved seeing the evolution of the fan community, especially through the generations since its publication. I have friends who had this novel read to them by family, an experience I very much envy. But at least I can still imagine bits of my collection coming to me from older fans. So–silly, but still worth a watch.
I’m in Ireland! Updates to follow upon my return, which is this week.
The Baen Free Library is full of free downloads, including The Shadow of the Lion and On Basilisk Station. Night Shade Books is offering Butcher Bird and Grey as free downloads at the moment. Vertigo Comics is offering free downloads of the first issue of several series, including Fables, The Unwritten, and Y: The Last Man. (And you will go download The Unwritten.) Small Beer Press offers several of their books as free downloads, including Kelly Link’s Magic for Beginners. If I’ve missed your giveaway or freebie, drop me a line!
Got any recommendations for fan histories?