by Judith Proctor and Kathryn Andersen
I must get hold of some zines again, Oh, parcel-man be nigh!
For all I ask is a thick zine, and some light to read it by.
And the engine's roar, and a sea of stars, and the plasma bolts exploding,
Or the howl of alarms on Gauda Prime and the red lights strobing.
I must get hold of some zines again, for the lure of Avon's pain,
Is a wild call and a clear call that I can't ignore again,
And all I ask is the postman's hand, to leave them in my doorway,
And a fork lift truck to pick them up, and shift them down the hallway.
I must get hold of some zines again, for Blake's Seven is my life,
I left the kids, I sold the car, I even shot the wife,
And all I ask is a merry yarn, from a laughing fellow rover,
To keep me calm in my prison cell, until the long trick's over!
Fanzines are books or magazines produced by fans. There are
science fiction zines, horrorzines, zines about TV series and doubtless on
other subjects too. They can range all the way from a couple of photocopied,
stapled sheets to professionally produced, computer typeset, colour-cover
books with perfect binding. The contents can vary from news and articles to
solid fiction. The fiction can range from stuff that is absolutely dire, to
stories produced by professional writers in fandoms that they love. Without
doubt, some fan writing is better than some professional writing.
In some fandoms, Blake's 7 being a particularly good example, there
is almost zero professional fiction available. There are the episode
write ups produced by Trevor Hoyle, 'Afterlife' by Tony Attwood (which
is regarded by most fans as being dreadful) and 'Avon A terrible
Aspect' by Paul Darrow which is loved by some and loathed by others.
In contrast, there is an amazing amount of fan fiction. We know of at
least 1,000 Blake's 7 fanzines out there, although most of the older
ones are now out of print. There are new zines still being produced
and I'm hoping to build up this site to contain information on as many
of them as possible.
The term filk came about by accident when a folk music session at a
convention was mistyped as 'filk'. Fans came to adopt the term for
songs with a science fiction or media TV theme. The melodies are
frequently filched from existing popular or folk tunes. There are
filks about the space programme, Star Wars and other SF movies, role
playing games, Blake's 7 and other popular programmes and almost anything
conected with them.
There are several terms that frequently crop up in relation to
fanzines - here's a few of them.
- A zine that is suitable for all readers. A genzine will not
contain any explicit sex.
- Fairly self-explanatory. Contains material unsuitable for children.
The term is generally understood to indicate explicit heterosexual material.
(If a zine contains a mixture of slash and het material, it is likely
to be described as slash.) Anyone ordering an adult zine should include
a statment that they are of legal age.
- Explicit homosexual material. The derivation is from the way pairings
are indicated. For example, Blake/Avon, or B/A would indicate a
sexual relationship between Blake and Avon. (/=slash) Some fans love
slash, some hate it. If you find the idea offputting, simply avoid
any zine described as slash. When ordering a slash zine, always state
that you are of legal age.
- Het or hetero
- An adult zine that does not contain slash. Relatively new term and
partly synonymous with adult (but less ambiguous).
- Multi-media zine
- A zine that covers more than one fandom. Multi-media
zines commonly deal with fandoms that are too small to produce zines of
their own, but they may include more popular stuff as well. You can find
anything from UFO to Man From Uncle in multi-medi zines. Their contents
will vary from issue to issue. Some may specialise in SF related series,
some will cover anything from Westerns to cop shows.
- Hurt/Comfort (h/c)
- A term used to describe stories in which the long-suffering hero is
subject to physical or emotional hurt. Some one else then gets to
provide the proverbial sholder to cry on, or assist the victim
physically. In Blake's 7 h/c, the sufferer is particularly likely to
- Fifth Season
- Fairly obvious. Blake's 7 ran to 4 seasons, so a 5th season story is
set after the series ended. (With most of the original characters
- A bit like having 20 pen friends all at once. Some or all of the
members of a letterzine write about whatever they fancy and on the
next issue every one else gets to comment back again. Typically only
about a third of the members of a letterzine will actually send
anything in for a particular isssue. Editing and layout is done by the
person running the letterzine.
- Amateur Press Association - a bit like a letterzine but the
membership is fixed to a certain number of people. Each member
is expected to contribute a fixed number of pages to each issue,
typically they photo-copy their own section send all the copies to
the person running the APA, who will collate the sections
and mail them out.
- Original Character
- Post Gauda Prime. The most popular term for any story set after
the final episode of the series.
- Pre Way Back. Term occasionally used for stories set before the
- Plot, What Plot? Popular term for a slash story in which the sex
scene is paramount and the story largely incidental.
- Sometimes used for stories that land the characters in
intensely emotional situations. Similar in many ways to with hurt/comfort.
- A largely obsolete term. Nothing to do with sex, it is actually
synonymous with hurt/comfort (imagine someone getting bonked on the head)
- Beat Up And Rape Avon - used for slash stories where Avon
suffers terribly, but almost invariably without any permanent damage.
Back to Blakes 7 Index
Last updated on 09th of June 2001.