The Paperback Fanatic #6
If you're interested in the history of genre publishing, as I am, let me recommend the new issue of The Paperback Fanatic #6, 42 large size pages packed with a look at British genre publishing in the 70's and 80's.
The major focus is on a long interview with the recently deceased Peter Haining. He began as a Fleet Street newspaperman, decided to free-lance genre paperbacks and then went on to become the editor who had a hand in creating everything from the famous western series Edge to introducing a the next step up in mass market soft core. In the course of the fascinating interview, you hear such well-known names as Christopher Priest and Peter Tremayne--appearing here in their younger days--and a number of colorful, occasionaly certifiably insane paperback hacks who ground out whatever Haining needed. They even managed to turn up an old-fashioned bigot to write a series of action novels starring Skinheads. Fortunately for everybody, it flopped.
There's also a history of the name Peter Saxon, how it all started with Sexton Blake, its many variables and guises in the 60s, 70s and 80s. Again if you like tales of hackery--as I do--this one is rich with desperate men and women grinding out novels for a living.
Phillip Hartbottle, editor of the 70s science fiction magazines, gives us a lengthy overview of the magazine's history. He also looks at the sf trends of that decade. Choice stuff.
Editor Justin Marriott is in the process of creating one of the most important magazines non-fiction genre magazines ever. And because theincidents here are set in London they all sound classier than they probably were. :)