By Sarah Thompson

An excellent zine, especially recommended for Avon and A-V fans. Not many people can do first-person Avon POV convincingly, but Pat Elrod is one of them, as her angsty PGP series proves. (First- person must be a congenial style for her; she uses it in her pro novels too.) She also does Vila well.

There was supposed to be at least one more issue of the zine, but I greatly fear that the editor and primary author has gotten sidetracked :) by her pro writing career.

I also very much like Jay Marchand's version of the bank fraud, in which Avon uses a Federation-wide currency conversion to disguise his machinations. It accounts neatly for the discrepancy in the two canonical mentions made of just how much he planned to steal- depends whether you're talking about the old currency or the new currency, you see.

Contents of Issue 1

Editor: P. N. Elrod
Publisher: Map Press (Fort Worth, TX)
Date: First edition: April 1988 (Reprints: November 1988, July 1989, October 1989)

P. N. Elrod, "Recovery" (S2; A-hc. A-V)
P. N. Elrod, "Stealer's Choice" (S1?; V)
P. N. Elrod, "Fugitives" (S5; A-V; part 1 of ?)

About the contributors
Zine ads

Veggie Table, "Gangrene Lipids" (Vogon poetry; humor)
Veggie Table, "Heartburn Like and Abcessed Lesion" (Vogon poetry; humor)
Map, "An Ode to Pylene 50 and Others" (Vogon poetry; humor)

Stefanie K. Hawks cover A-V
Map p. 6 V
p. 12 Se
p. 46 MK
p. 47 A
p. 54 A with beard
p. 57 A, V with beard
p. 60 V with beard
Guy Brownlee & p. 19 manga-style illos
Edith DeGolyer p. 21 "Stealer's Choice"
p. 26 "
p. 29 "
p. 31 "
p. 38 "
Earlene Benson Martin p. 42 SF landscape

Contents of Issue 2

Editor: P. N. Elrod
Publisher: Map Press (Fort Worth, TX)
Date: First edition: January 1989 (Reprints: April 1989, May 1989, December 1991)

Mark & P. N. Elrod, "Vortex" (S1; post-Breakdown; DW crossover)
P. N. Elrod, "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Star One" (S2)
Veggie Table, "The Missing Are Furry" (Bulwer-Lytton sentence; humor)
P. N. Elrod, "Breakout" (S5; A-V; part 2 of ?)
P. N. Elrod, "Haven" (S5; A-V; part 3 of ?)

About the writers
Letters to the Editor
Zine ad

Poetry (all humorous):
Map, "The Rebel in the Liberator Hat" (f, The Lady in the Tutti Frutti Hat")
?, "Dueling Duet" (limericks; Ta/Se)
Gil Bert & Sully Van, "Avon's Aria" (f, Poisoning Pigeons in the Park, by Tom Lehrer)
Einstein Rosenbridge, "Orac"
Einstein Rosenbridge, "Beau and Darrow"
Map, "Put the Blame on Avon" (f, Put the Blame on Mame)
?, limerick
Veggie Table, "Abstract Assonant Aliteration"
Veggie Table, "Job Security"
Veggie Table, " xcedrin Headache #721"
Veggie Table, "The Flying Finger of Fiendish Fate Frights Again"
Veggie Table, "A Vogon by Any Other Name"

Stefanie K. Hawks cover A-V
Linda Holt p. 6 Tr1
p. 14 ocf; illo for "Vortex"
p. 16 ocf; illo for "Vortex"
p. 24 A, B, The Doctor
p. 40 B
Map p. 46 Tardis
Guy Brownlee p. 53 manga-style illos for
p. 63 "A Funny Thing"
Lia Frederick pp. 71-74 "Avon's Pinup Gallery" (J, So, D, C, Se)
Joy Marie Ledet p. 90 A-V, B; illo for "Haven"
p. 99 A, Del Grant; illo for "Haven"
p. 106 A-ocf; illo for "Haven"
p. 113 A; illo for "Haven"

Contents of Issue 3

Editor: P. N. Elrod
Publisher: Map Press (Fort Worth, TX)
Date: First edition: December 1990 (Reprint: August 1992)

Jay Marchand, "Fraud, Part I: Anna" (S0; A/Anna)
P. N. Elrod, "Fraud, Part II: Avon" (S0; A)
P. N. Elrod, "Fraud, Part III: Grant" (S5; part 4 of ?; A-V, A/ocf)

Letters of Comment

Linda K. Holt cover A
p. 36 Anna in bed
p. 48 A
p. 57 V
p. 77 A-V
p. 94 A
back c. A
Denise Loague p. 7 Del Grant
p. 8 Anna Grant
p. 15 A
p. 19 Anna
p. 38 A-Anna
p. 53 A-V; illo for Part II
p. 67 V
p. 71 A
p. 74 A-Del Grant
p. 90 Del Grant

Review by Julia Jones

Avon: Online Issue 2

An almost one-person zine, with most of the fiction written by Pat Elrod. (You can tell I've been spending too much time with Lord of the Rings recently, I keep typing that as Elrond.) An interesting zine, giving the chance to look at fanfiction by a writer who was turning pro at the time the zine was published, circa 1989. She mentions that she's writing the fourth in a series of novels, the first of which, Bloodlist, is about to be published. I presume that the work in progress was _Art in the Blood_, which features avatars of the late second series cast as main characters. She's also used avatars in other pro novels, so obviously she was having too much fun playing with the characters to stop just because she'd turned pro. :-)

Four stories, plus Vogon poetry, and a pin-up gallery. The Vogon poetry and filks aren't my sense of humour, but they don't take up much of the zine. The fiction is excellent, and has some rather nice accompanying art. I'd recommend this zine.

Vortex - Mark & PN Elrod Crossover between Dr Who and Blake's 7, with an unusual original character. A time stream traffic accident between the TARDIS and a humanoid alien with an innate time-travel ability results in both being trapped in the Vortex. Unfortunately they've dragged two ships with them - the Liberator, and the pursuit ship Travis was using in the chase from XK-72. Now the Doctor and TD have to find a way to free themselves and the humans from the Vortex, preferably without immediately exposing the Liberator to Travis. But Travis is more interested in the fact that his weapons still work in the Vortex than in worrying about getting out of the Vortex.

It's fun to see the interplay between the Doctor and the Liberator crew, and Avon's drooling over TimeLord tech is very believable:-) Good characterisation, and some nice lines. I liked this one a lot.

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Star One - PN Elrod

It would be more accurate to say "on the way to Centero" - this story is actually set shortly before Seek-Locate-Destroy, so the title is rather misleading, to the point where I was rather confused at first. Avon and Vila have been sent to get plans of the Centero base, from yet another, but less well-guarded, Federation base. Which leads to Avon impersonating the one-eyed, one-armed Federation officer they run into on the way, as a way of getting into the base without arousing suspicion. Which in turn leads to Vila in drag, forced to fend off the advances of the sex-starved base commander, but to do it *slowly* so as to give Avon time to break into the computer...

Very nice first person Vila narration, and a lot of fun. Good story for Vila fans and A-V fans.

Breakout - PN Elrod

Not indicated as such in the zine, but apparently part of a sequence that started in issue 1. After Gauda Prime, Avon and Vila have been imprisoned by the Federation, and Avon has been conditioned so that he can't use technology. They have escaped/been retrieved by someone during a Resister attack on the prison. This story opens with Avon and Vila recovering in the medical bay of the Federation cruiser Altmont, with Avon in a bit of a mess both physically and mentally. The only survivor of the cruiser crew, Kella, was a Resister plant, and she's busy cleaning up the mess she made when she took over the ship. The story follows their joint attempts to convince the Federation that the ship has been destroyed.

It's well-written, but I found it didn't really work as a stand-alone - it's more of a set-up for the next story in the sequence. Fortunately that story is in the same zine.

Haven - PN Elrod

Follows on from Haven. Vila trusts Kella the mercenary, but Avon doesn't. With good reason, as it turns out - she sells them to a Resister group, and Avon is put on trial. Things are a little more complicated than the Resister leadership had anticipated, and the end result is a faked trial record and a faked execution. Vila and Del Grant claim Avon's "corpse", and the three set off on the next stage of the journey - with Kella along for the ride.

Plausible look at what might happen after Gauda Prime, and a realistic look at the internal political problems Blake's apparent betrayal might cause the rebels.

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