Contact 04

SeContact04Coverptember, 1977. Star Trek had been off the air for eight years. A movie was still over two years away. Papers had announced the development of Star Trek: Phase II, a series which never happened and which, surprisingly, the Contact crowd, so close to the center of Fandom, was apparently unaware. At least Bev swore up and down in the 1990s that she’d never heard of the show, and would have remembered if Roddenberry had used the name of her Trek sequel for his own.

At this point, Bev and Nancy seemed to have hit a creative wall. They announce in their editorial that there may be no Contact 5. They apparently felt in a rut, dismissed as a “get em” zine (a serious charge for fan fiction in the 1970s!) and even unsupported by fans and fellow creators who weren’t sending them the diversity of material they felt they needed. They felt there was too much torture, too much Hurt-Comfort, in their pages. It’s a point all creators seem to reach. As the historical drama of Contact unfolds, it’s heartening to know it didn’t stop Bev and Nancy. They still had years and issues ahead of them.The cover is designed and drawn by Russ Volker, probably one of his most striking designs. The table of contents page lists a half dozen fan fiction legends, not even counting the editors.

This issue contains “The Rack,” a piece by J. Emily Vance which is billed in Bev’s and Nancy’s notes and in other sources as the first “response fic,” the first story to be written in response to discussions happening in Fandom. Ripped from the headlines, as it were. The discussion was whether or not Kirk and Spock were, in fact, lovers. “The Rack” speculates (horribly) on what impact such discussions can have on the lives and careers of real people. No one had heard of J. Emily Vance before. In fact, “she” didn’t exist. The name was a corrupted anagram of parts of the names of the three actual authors: “J Em” for Martha J. Bonds, “ily V” for Bevily Volker, and “ance” for Nance-y Kippax.

Here are the links to the PDF and CBZ files.


This issue contains:

BACK WHERE HE BELONGS (poem) by Crystal Ann Taylor; illo by Laurie Huff
THE ONLY OTHER THING (story) by Ginna Lacroix; illo by Merle Decker
THE CHALLENGE (poem) by Nancy Kippax; illo by Russ Volker
BORN OF ASHES (novella) by Martha J. Bonds; illos by Pat Stall
MOVING (poem) by Pete Kaup; illo by Kathy Carlson
INTERLUDE (poem) by Bev Volker; illo by Judd
THE SADISTS by Sheila Clark
END RESULT by Shirley S. Maiewski
THE CHANGELING (poem) by Martha J. Bonds; illo by Kathy Carlson
SUN GOD AND SHADOW (poem) by Amy Falkowitz; illo by Signe Langdon
THE HUNGER IN THE MOUNTAIN (story) by Jennifer Weston; ilLos by Leslie Fish
THE NATURE OF LOVE (poem) by Martha J. Bonds
R’VAMO (poem) by Susan K. James; illo by Signe Landon
THE REAL THING (story) by S. Schildknecht & M. Bonds
REVOLUTIONS (poem) by B. J. Volker; illo by Signe Landon
SENSORY PERCEPTION (poem) by Carolyn Venino; illo by Merle Decker
THE RACK (novella) by J. Emily Vance illos by Alice Jones
SO CONSTANT THE CHANGE (poem) by Beverly Volker

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1 thought on “Contact 04

  1. Hi! I found out about “The Rack” via an entry about Response Fic on Fanlore. I’ve just read it, and oof! Got me right here *points at heart*. Is there any chance you have a copy of the companion/sequel “All the King’s Men”, which apparently appeared in Farthest Star? (or failing that, the “Complete Rack”?)

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