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10 Science-Fiction Treks

Many Resources for Fans of Fantasy and the 'Far Our'

April 23, 1987|SUE MARTIN | Martin is an editorial assistant at The Times

Believe it or not, science fiction (S-F) did exist before "Star Wars"--even before "Star Trek." Some say it goes back to Mary Shelley's 1818 masterpiece, "Frankenstein." In its most basic form, science fiction poses the old question: "What if . . . ?" And this covers the gamut from speculations and expansions on realities to times and places beyond all but the writer's ken.

Starships, Wookies, Tribbles, sandworms and Superman represent but the tip of the planet. Wherever the genre began, the field and subsequent public interest in it has grown to the point that an S-F or fantasy novel appears on best-seller lists almost every week.

So starship troopers: If you want to get involved with the far-out world of S-F, here are 10 ways. Call ahead for business hours of stores.

Bookstores--There are many specialty shops dealing with S-F and its sister genre, fantasy. Dangerous Visions, 13563 Ventura Blvd., Sherman Oaks, (818) 986-6963, has a nice selection of signed and first editions, and used books and they will do searches. They also have frequent book signings. Closed Mondays. A Change of Hobbit, 1853 Lincoln Blvd., Santa Monica, lays claim to 15 years as a science-fiction bookstore. It has more than 75,000 new and used books. Authors do signings 15 times a year--David Brin ("The Postman") and William Gibson ("Count Zero") will appear Saturday at 2 and 4 p.m., respectively. They also have a free search service and publish a newsletter. Closed Sundays. Alice and Marty Massoglia at A & M Book Cellars, Unit I at 19801 Vanowen, Canoga Park, (818) 716-6259, deal in used books with an emphasis on S-F. Alice is knowledgeable in mysteries, Marty knows the S-F field and they're happy to do searches.

For the Record
Los Angeles Times Thursday May 7, 1987 Home Edition View Part 5 Page 17 Column 3 You Desk 2 inches; 46 words Type of Material: Correction
In an article about science fiction April 23, it was reported that the Steven Spielberg Film Society, P.O. Box 13712, Tucson, Ariz. 85732, gives special attention to Spielberg films scored by John Williams. It should have stated that the society deals with all aspects of film making and gives special attention to Spielberg films.

Book Club--If browsing through bookstores is too dusty and tedious, you can always browse by mail through the Science Fiction Book Club titles, owned by Doubleday Books. It offers four to five new books every month. There are always 40 to 50 titles in stock. There's no annual minimum order, except for the first year, when four titles must be ordered. All hardbacks are discounted up to 65%, and at least one of the main selections can go for as low as $4.98. The Science Fiction Book Club also occasionally offers other merchandise, such as books on tape, even cookware. Write to: Science Fiction Book Club, Department BT-153, Garden City, N.Y. 11535. Telephone (516) 873-4561.

Magazines--If you're interested in behind-the-scenes information about the latest "Star Trek" film (or the upcoming new TV series) or a look backward to "The Day the Earth Stood Still," you can pick up a copy of Starlog magazine each month or buy an annual subscription ($27.99). Address: 475 Park Ave. South, New York, N.Y., 10016, (212) 689-2830. If you're interested in S-F authors, agents and book reviews, try Locus, published by Locus Publications, P.O. Box 13305, Oakland, Calif. 94661, (415) 339-9196. Subscriptions are $24 a year. One of the many pulp magazines still publishing short fiction is Analog, Science Fiction/Science Fact (Astounding), which the masthead states has published continually since 1930. Subscriptions are $19.50 a year for 13 issues. Write P.O. Box 1936, Marion, Ohio 43306, or call (614) 383-3141.

Organizations--Want to meet new friends who are interested in war gaming, Doctor Who or Admiral Kirk? Join the Los Angeles Science Fantasy Society (LASFS) (founded in 1934), 11513 Burbank Blvd., North Hollywood, (818) 760-9234. Rick Young is the registrar. Weekly meetings are Thursdays at 8 p.m. The first three meetings are free; on the fourth, you pay a $5 membership and $1 at every meeting you attend thereafter. Every second Sunday of the month there's a 2 p.m. open house for those interested in gaming and talk. The society also sponsors the annual Loscon, an S-F convention on Thanksgiving weekend at a local hotel.

Computers--If you're a child of the electronic age, you may want hands-on experience with your favorite universe and/or be the captain of your own starship. S-F or fantasy-oriented games, such as Bard's Tale and Wizardry, can be found at any of 23 Egghead Software stores, including 14651 Ventura Blvd., Sherman Oaks, (818) 783-6214, and for science-fiction buffs, there's the Kobayashi Alternative (a "Star Trek" situation). At Software, Etc., Topanga Canyon Mall, No. 83, 6600 Topanga Canyon Blvd., Canoga Park, (818) 348-6030, the big sellers are computer games that run in series: the Enchanter's Trilogy, the King's Quest 1-4, Ultima and the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. They also have books at some 20 Southland stores that show you how to create your own computer adventure game.

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