All Our Yesterdays - Introduction

Introduction To The Disc Version

This is the second incarnation of the fanzine version of All Our Yesterdays — the 40 reprinted articles that I finally managed to publish on 26 th January 1991. This is being completed some six years later, just prior to ATTITUDE The Convention (Tuesday 11 th February 1997.)

The original paper account of AOY’s history (and how both Harry Warner and I viewed the project) is recounted below, mainly for those coming to this collection for the first time. The question, I suppose, is why go through all the typing again? Two things — one I know and the other I suspect.

Firstly, the original paper edition hit many criticisms (some justified, some nit-picky, and some just pointless) but has slowly sold itself down to the last handful of copies. Feedback also seems to indicate that people are using the paper copies as reference tools as well as for the nostalgia contained within them. This “Electric” version should make referencing and annotation easier.

And, lastly, because the intervening years have seen not only an advancement in readily available technology — along with a new breed of fan who isn’t afraid to use it in the same way I used to use a manual typewriter and stencils — I felt it was time to cater for them as well.

As to whether this is the first true electric fan production? I know not — and care less. I would hazard a guess to say that it is the first fanthology on a coloured 3½-inch HD disc to be produced with a wraparound colour cover, disc label and its own little clear perspex box. And you don’t get those kind of goodies when you download from the Web.

My final comment before going into the original intro is more of a request:— That these files not be duplicated (except for personal backup purposes), uploaded onto a BBS or Website without requesting first, and that any quotes taken from this edition be credited to this edition.

Now, let me take you back to 1986, via 1991, to tell you how the Beast was born….

Notes for bastard reviewers of this fanzine art…..


Notes for fanzine reviewers of this bastard art…..

I suppose it depends on what and how you would view such an undertaking as this omnibus.

Personally I don’t particularly consider it specifically a work of fanhistory as there was no intention of such when I took on the project. Nor does it set itself out to be the definitive collection of articles penned by Harry – such was never the case (a task, it must be said, which would prove impossible before it even got started).

No, if this should be viewed as anything other than a collection of fanzine articles, then the point has been missed because that is what I have tried to do here – setting the pieces out on their own, giving each a title illustration, the endings, where they required it, have artwork, and where the articles end on a right-hand page they are backed with a full page illustration so that (a) each new section starts as it should, on the right-hand page (which makes it easier to read) and (b) no fanzine editors like blank pages in their fanzines, do they?

One of the biggest comments (complaints?) will be the lack of page numbers to this collection. What can I say, except that, during my eleven years of fanzine production (at the time of typing this, that is) I have almost never put a page count in any of my fanzines. This attitude is nothing new (see the section about Harry’s own HORIZONS}and I doubt I would have completed this project if I had had some running record of just how many pages I had turned out or, more importantly, how many pages were left to type.

There may also be comments about certain sections and their history seeming fuzzy. For that I can but lay down this brief history of the project.

In 1986 I was involved in a 9-month circumnavigation of the globe. Towards the end of that deployment I received a package from home which contained a pile of photocopied ’pages’. These, it turned out, came from Paul "Skel" Skelton, who, in turn, had received eighty stencils from Richard Bergeron, and a list of articles that Harry had written under his umbrella title of ALL OUR YESTERDAYS. Both of us had expressed an interest in the original project, started by Richard {who was unable to finish it), but that Skel believed that there was too much work involved in getting the thing into print (there were, at that particular time, 10 articles to be found, and the eighty stencils needed retyping into an A4 – or Quarto – format as the margins were American sized and unsalvageable.}

Whatever, Skel kindly passed everything onto me (including some very helpful notes concerning inconsistencies in the text) and I decided that although I would take it on, it would also be something a little different from a run-of -the mill fanzine.

Dave Collins was contacted for the article headers, a job which he almost managed to complete before he was fafiated, Shep Kirkbride and Kevin Clark thankfully stepped in to help finish the job.

Chris Suslowicz was contacted for the colour duplication, which proved to be more difficult and time delaying than any of us thought possible (problems with stencils, duplicators, and ink, being amongst them} which is why you will find several headers in black following each other. The moving of 24 odd reams of paper across half of the British Isles by train (engineering delays, re-routings, etc) was a fun-filled exercise on its own.

Chasing down the missing articles was admirably aided by both Vincent Clarke and Walt Willis here in the UK, and Rich Brown (who dug up a couple more pieces into the bargain) over in the USA.

Richard Bergeron and Shep Kirkbride supplied the covers, which were then passed onto John D. Owen and his Crystal Shipyard Press. Things started to look like the omnibus wouldn’t take long to be completed. That was when things started to take a turn in the opposite direction.

First, the original electrostencil cutter I had decided to go defective on me, and funds had to be diverted to getting another one. Next, the ink pump on my Gestetner 300 decided to play up, giving heart palpitations any time when ink-intensive duplication was required. This was later rectified, after I had gotten another duplicator. Between then and now I also lost two typewriters (the (in)famous Typo Twins) which is why you may see some differences in the typeface when you read the main body of this fanzine and one electric typewriter (another stately veteran of fanning, now put out to grass due to mounting repairs). Then, several days (and stencils) away from completion, the faithful Roneo Electroscan scanned its last stencil, and I have had to rely on Vincent Clarke for the final couple of electrostencils.

And of course, somewhere between 1986 and today (Sunday, December 30th, 1990), work stuck its spanner in. So, if you take into account that I get about 50 to 52 days leave per year then it could be said that this omnibus has really only taken 156-ish days. But to say that would be to belittle the work of many others, without whom this omnibus would never have seen the light of day.

So, in no particular order, I would like to say Thank You to:

Richard Bergeron,
Shep Kirkbride,
Vincent Clarke,
Walt Willis,
Chris Suslowicz,
Dave Collins (wherever he may be),
Ron Soule,
Paul Ward,
John Kostick,
Pete Crump,
John D. Owen,
Rich Brown,
Mic Rogers,
Kevin Clark,
Iain Byers,
Steve & Jenny Smy (PD artwork),
Mrian H leinbergen
Marc Holmes
Dick Parker

and above all Harry Warner Jr, for writing it all in the first place.

The final few stencils (ie, these ones you’re reading now) were processed using Rhadamanthus, a DIY IBM AT compatible running PFS FIRST PUBLISHER v3, and were cut using Madam Syn – The 24-Pin dot matrix (yes, direct cut, no ribbon and no clogging of the printer head either, using normal and also daisywheel-specific stencils).

Whatever, enough of all this. If you flip over the page you’ll get to read the list of contents – but remember, this is not designed to be read in one sitting. Think of it more as a relaxed gathering around a nice warm fire while your favourite old Uncle Harry tells you what it used to be like way back when......

Last revised: 2 March, 2006

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