Fancyclopedia I: P - purple

P - Another well-behaved letter except when people tie it up with h. Such important words as fantasy and sulfa- were once so spelled. P was the pseudo middle initial of Claire P Beck, standing for Poverty, and he desired it dropped at the time (end of 1938) of his epic hitch-hike to NY and back to Lakeport, when it became too bitterly true.

Pacificon - (Ackerman) - The proposed 4th World Convention in LA in 1942. Tho it was postponed, the name Pacificon Jr. was given to an extra-large meeting of the LASFS late in 1942, when Rothman and many other immigrants and transients were there.

pamflet - A booklet containing information of more than temporary value.

Panurge - (Rabelais) - Pename of W B McQueen, later one of the Columbia Camp.

Panzerkampfwagen - (Speer) - A Mercury convertible belonging to Juffus's brother, in which the Philadelphia Blitzkrieg and other trips were carried out.

parties - After the June 1938 FAPA campaign, Speer made preparations to launch a formal political party with the Phillies, Queensies, and other allies, to be called the Constitutional Party, and formed by a dozen people signing a joint declaration. The idea was scrapped when the Wollheimists, and their opponents, dropped out. In 1939 the Progressive Party was formed by McPhail, with Taurasi Marconette, on a platform opposing fan feuds and denouncing alienisms. They were embarrassed by the application of the Futurians for admission on claim that they approved substantially of the party's platform, and McPhail dissolved and re-formed it without the Futurians. In 1941 the Futurians formed the Constitutionalist Party, opposing particularly Rothman's admitted violating of the Constitution, and the proposal to raise the dues to 75 [cents] which had been voted on in a special election and erroneously declared passed (too few in all voted). Both the Progressives and the Constitutionalist failed to elect their men.

More effective in winning elections were unofficial combines like the Wollheimists above referred to and the FAPA Brain Trust, which supplied nearly all the officials for the NFFF and for the FAPA after the Interregnum.

Lawrence Paschall - Pename of Dan McPhail, derived from his middle and mother's maidename.

patriotism - People as inclined to cynicism, semantics, and anti-emotionalism as fans are do not offer fertile soil for nationalistic loyalty. When war came, fans displayed a willingness to fite for certain aspects of the American way of life, but dealt heavily with flag-waving super-patriots who appeared among them.

pename- To give variety where the same writer has several pieces in one issue of a fanzine, or just because he likes the sound of the name, pen names are often used. Much ink has been shed over the question of whether they should be used so freely, it being maintained that the reader has a right to know who's writing a piece, that no fans are likely to get mistaken ideas of the size of fandom or some section of it, and that it hampers the secretary of the FAPA in determining activity credentials and the Laureate Committee in giving honors. But still they come. Certain ones, such as Solitaire, Azygous, Star-Treader, the Professor, and the S-F Cynic, have been made deep mysteries, and much speculation preceded their identification. Others have seemed to be separate new fans but turned out to be hoaxes. The penames whose identity is not concealed are a mutation of the fan's name, and entirely new name thot up, or descriptive of some characteristic real or imaginary. Jack Erman, Lawrence Paschall, Thomas G Robertson, J Harry Vincent, Erick Freyor, and Pvt Ack-Ack are of the firstype; Sears Langell, Brazton Wells, Robert Bahr, Weaver Wright, Allen Zweig, Samuel D Gottesman, F Stanislaus Prosody, Roy St John Le Claire, and the Conways are the second; and Joy Ping Pong, Claire Voyant, Erdstelulov, (Himself), Dr Acula, Vermyn Slinko, Satyricus, Sinn-yk-uhss, and Panurge of the third. Many penames are nonce-words and not worth compiling. Others may become indistinguishable from nicknames.

leslie perri - Name by which Doris Baumgardt, ex -Phol, is generally known.

personalized fanzine - The descriptive name stumbled on for what this lexicon calls individ fanzine.

petition - Originally a signed paper addressed to some official, praying that certain action be taken. In fandom, however, petitions are anything but humble supplications. For example, there was one signed by many attendees of the Newark Convention, which reprimanded Sykora for misuse of his chairmanship of the Convention. A little later, following the June 1938 FAPA elections, Speer got signatures from more than half of the members of a Petition of Reprimand demanding no repetition of the Wollheimists' tactics in the election. The Constitution of the FAPA now makes an instrument in the form of a petition the means by which a majority of the active members can at any time do almost anything that lies in the sovereignty of the organization.

pet names - Besides the names given fans' autos and miscellaneous property like cameras and tripewriters, many fanzines have been given affectionate nicknames, which help give the contents "personality". There are usually corruptions of a syllable or two from the regular names; Madge, Nell, Fanny, Mickey, Tommy, Sally, Lovy, Fay, Leo, Tizzie, Di, SaL, Squeaky, LeZ, Warbul, Vom, Susie, Neppie, Horace, Fido, Espie, Mopsy, and Beulah.

Phantasy Legion - A project of David A Kyle's, with board of directors, emblem, official organ, 'n' everything, expect activity. The organization appeared and died in the First Transition.

Ø - Nickname of Øred Pohl ever since he used Greek alphabets on the covers of Mind of Man.

Philco - Philadelphia conference. The title was adopted in 1939 when "convention" had come to mean something larger than the former Eastern S-F gatherings, buy annual Philcos are numbered serially counting the First and Third Easters as 1 and 2.

Phillies - The prominent members of the PSFS, sometimes with the exception of Rothman. Baltadonis, Madle, and Agnew were the chief ones, and Speer was usually part of their unit in the fan feuds.

philosophy - Speculative inquiry which investigates matters not yet within the realms of science or art; specifically the four questions; What is the nature of reality (is the universe more like an idea in someone's mind, or like a machine, or the commonsense view; are all natural laws reducible to a single principle; does God exist; what is the difference between being and not being; is the future course of events determined? How can we gain knowledge of reality (how dependable are our senses; can we be absolutely certain of anything; what are the rules of logic; how can we find the referent; ktp)? What is the nature of good (are there absolute values; what is the relation between individual and general welfare; is happiness the only test of good; should one accept things as they are or try to change them; &c)? What is the nature of the beautiful (are there essences which are captured by the artist; should art have any relation to morality; should the artist create only for his own taste; what is the essential difference between prose and poetry; etc)? It will be easily seen that the first two groups of question, metaphysics and epistemology, concern principles very important in discussion of fantasy; and that the latter two, ethics and aesthetics, are subjects that fans have talked bout a great deal since the First Transition. The worth of philosophy lies not in giving dogmatic answers to those questions, but in mapping out the answers that have been given, and showing the assumptions and implications of the various theories.

ph- - If you're looking for anything else that starts with this, but you'd better thumb back to the Fs.

Plancom - (Evans) - The Long-Range Planning Committee of the NFFF. It was to consider all suggestions for new activities to be undertaken by the Federation and work into shape those that it considered worth while, but after it had finished, they had yet to be approved by the Board, EEEvans was chmn of the Plancom, and sent out carbon-copied sheets to the Committeemen carrying ideas and comments, received comments and ideas, and sent out more sheets. In an active quarter, the ides considered included: establishment of a Welcom, compilation of a history of fandom, recognition of official poll taker, publications of a fannual, reader's bureaus to advise which stories in the current pros were worth reading (disapproved), voting by all fans on time and place of conventions, official stationery, public relations idea, awards, federal subdivision of the country, and others.

poetry - Fantasy poetry of course dates from earliest times. Science-fiction has not seemed such a good theme for poetic flites, but efforts have been made by fans, some worthy, and among great poets sciencistic pieces were found, notably in Tennyson. A good example of purely science-fiction poetry is the Planet Prince's quatrain:

"And my mind goes soaring upward

Far beyond our dreary ken

To a desert dying planet

And a dying race of men." A bit over done, but genuine. In fandom and the pros we have: ballads, usually of rather simple appeal; one epic; other semi-narrative and descriptive poems such as "Passing of the Planets"; store of love lyrics and others expressing personal feeling, which have no connection with fantasy except that fantasy fans have written them, as well as numerous fantasy lyrics addressed to Red Moon or a Martian lover or the first space flite; dadistic and metaphysical stuff; jingles like daffy poetics; and a great many parodies of various types of poems and songs.

All the familiar verse forms are used. Lowndes and others have written many sonnets (Lovecraft's Fungi from Yuggoth are favorites), vers libre is popular with our Bohemians, Speer has plugged the Anglo-Saxon measure. Standard stanza division is usually in poems of grater than filler size; there has been comparatively little blank vers.

All poetry booklets appear rather often. There was a short-lived DF Poets' Guild. The FAPA has a poetry laureate.

Pogo - Nickname for Mrs. Russell M Wood, formerly Mary Corrine Gray, once called Patti.

point system of rating - (Youd: Warner) - Because the impressionistic comments on a story, article, or department (swell, OK, lousy, it stinks, worth three plums and a prune, etc) are likely to vary greatly in meaning in different critics and not tell the editor much, You'd asked Fay's readers to rate each piece with a number from 1 to 10, 10 being best. The number is to indicate the quality, not the rank as compared to others in the same issue; every piece in an issue mite get the same rating if they seem equally good or punk. Such ratings are easy to average up and get the consensus of opinion on an item and the general rating on an issue (in the latter case, pieces are sometimes weighted according to length, so that a three-page article will have more effect on the general rating than a one-pager). The system is not perfect, however, since different readers may attach different significance to the same number: one may use 7 for the general run of acceptably good material, while another will use 5. Buried somewhere in Spaceways' letter section, beyond the reach of this author's research, is a statement of what each number signifies to one reader, which Warner asked all to observe.

The point system has been tampered with, some readers and editors preferring to use any number from 1 to 100, in the delusion that ratings could be that fine; and some applying money values.

political fantasy - (Marconette) - A story whose primary object is to illustrate some sociological opinion, which it does usually by imagining events in the modern world which we know couldn't have happened because if they had we'd have read about them in the newspapers, like van Loon's story of the invasion of America by Nazis in 1940, or Warner Brothers' Mission to Moscow. Such stories may take place in the future, like Wells's The Life and Death of a Dictator. Such stories are fantasy not so much because they involve superscience or the like, but because they must be placed in an imaginary country, or in the future, or in some present subjectively alternative to our own, in order that the author may manipulate characters and incidents freely. Fantastories like Things to Come which merely have sociological overtones probably would not be called political fantasy. The term is not a good one as a parallel to s-f, weird, and pure fantasy because it frequently overlaps with true science-fiction etc, and there are very similar stories, comedies of manners on a grand scale, whimsical bits, and stories simply speculating "if", which are not sociologically motivated.

politics - In expressions as Fanny's "Boost Science Fiction Not Politics", moans sociological discussions.

Poll Cat - Art Widner's polls of fan opinion and data. Originally it was simply concerned with preferences among stf authors, etc. Appeals were broadcast in all leading fanzines for readers to send in their votes on certain questions, and as returns were compiled, they were published, later returns being published later. Then one issue of a fanzine called The Poll Cat appeared, at which time Widner set out to test the thesis that fans are a separate and distinct type (slans or whatever you want to call them). Thereafter, the poll, conducted thru Le Zombie (other subscription fanzines being irregular because of the war), included blank self-addresses postcards for the readers to reply on, rather than leaving it entirely to their own initiative. Looking for unusual average in fans, Widner found several characteristics that looked significant, such as longevity of grandparents, lager hat size, and greater height, but some remarks by Harry Warner cast serious doubts on them.

polls - The first fan poll was the IPO. While it was till running, the fanzine Novae Terrae put out a questionnaire with each issue, called Panel of Critics, which contained some questions on the magazine and some personal and other general questions. Afterwards, Le Zombie and other fanzines from time to time took a poll, but he Poll Cat made the things famous in fandom.

Questions are usually of three types; Opinions on top fan, author, pro, best-remembered fantascene, etc; opinions on religion, Michelism, &c; and personal data, which as age, national extraction, and introvert characteristics.

Sometimes the fan's name is required on poll answers, sometimes they are at least nominally treated as anonymous.

The gremlins of polls are several. Worst is the jerk who receivers a postcard to reply on and doesn't do anything about it; these usually run around 50% of the total coverage. Another offender is the guy who won't give a straight answer to the question but thinks the card is better used for wise cracks, which are quite unappreciated. Finally, there is the problem of getting a representative sample of the fans. The Poll Cat did best at this when his request and reports were appearing in many different subscription fanzines, but even he had trouble with a lot of fans from a given locality ganging up and sending in votes for the leading fan in their puddle as being top fan of the world, etc. Other polls have had worse luck in this regard. Even if the fanzines they are circulated with cuts a good cross-section of fandom, the replies are likely to be weighted toward the writers, etc, appearing in the fanzine, because it is in the replier's mind when he answers, and the colossal fanzine which appeared a month ago, and convention and club activities, are more dimly remembers. There is also a tendency to vote the poll-taker higher among the top fans than would be done on someone else's poll. Widner modestly left himself out entirely in reporting the results.

Pong - The surname given such Tuckerish penames as John W. Pong Jr., Horatio Alger Pong, usw, altho according to some who should know, the first name rathern the last is the surname of Chinamen, so that if these characters are related to the famous Hoy Ping Pong, they should all be Hoys.

post-mailing - (Speer) - After each FAPA mailing, there are usually some publications that missed the boat. These may wait for the next mailing, but most of the time the publisher has the mailing manager send them to each member at the publisher's expense, or does it himself. In the latter case, when the official mailing is unexpectedly delayed, these "post"-mailings may actually be premailings. If official material is mailed out late, late publications will be included with it, and the expense is borne by the treasury. Despite some objections, publications sent out late to all members are considered part of the official mailings for purposes of laureates, activity records, etc.

president - The president of an organization is the guy who's responsible. If the org isn't doing much activity, blame the president. If things go wrong, he must fix them if no volunteer vigilantes beat him to it. The FAPA Constitution specifically gives the president all necessary powers to deal with situations not otherwise covered by the Constitution; especially to prevent another interregnum. While few functions are specifically delegated to a president, he has considerable influence on the organization, by his power to appoint officials, by recommendations made in line with his responsibility, and by speaking for the organization to fandom as a whole or to the general public.

Prime Base - (Smith: Futurians) - 129 W 103d St. Manhattan NY, a few doors east of the Futurian Embassy. Therein dwelt certain Futurians in the 1941 interval between the Embassy and the Fortress.

printing - Such fanzines as are printed are more often than not hand-set. Several have been hired out to commercial printers at prohibitive cost; one such printer, Conrad H Ruppert of the staff of Fantasy Magazine, later offered reduced rates for fanzines. However that may be, limited circulation has meant that virtually all printed fanzines are largely financed by the editor's own pocket. Rubber stamp sets are usually excluded from the term "printing".

pros - Pronounced [proz] Means commercially published fantasy magazines, such as Astounding Stories and Weird Tales. Also sometimes means professional writers of fantasy, tho the definition between one who makes his living as an author, and one who writes only for pin money, has never been satisfactorily made.

Prozines have multiplied from the old days of the Big Three to a peak in 1940. In 1939 the count was 18 different titles, 1116 issues published, and in 1940 it was even higher. In an IPO survey taken near its inception, the flood of new pros was disapproved 18 to 5, so there mustn't have been much weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth when the curve turned downward. (Reasons for the up&down much debated.) Disapproval was mainly because the new magazines, with some exceptions, printed trashier material than the older ones, and fans didn't want to read it or have other people reading it and sneering at stf.

Quite a few long-time fans have at times completely given up reading the pros thru disgust, or preoccupation with fan and other activities. The course of fan history has varied from close to slite connexion with the pros, and the wish has often been expressed that we could get along without the pros as a recruiting medium. This is principally a fanationalistc manifestation, however; the average stefnist eats up good stfantasy, has an exaggerated idea of its literary merit, and will leap to defend it against detractors.

the Professor - Pename of a writer of super-puritanical letters to Vom. This hoaxster was finally revealed, for the publication of Fancyclopdeia, to be lusty Les Croutch, the Canadian sexperimenter in stf.

Intellectual Brotherhood of Pro-Scientists - A quasi-Michelist organization launched by Raymond van Houten and Peter Duncan, with a manifesto which they wanted fans to sign, denouncing the anti-scientific forces of the time, such as Frankenstein movies, and praising Science as the thing that would solve all problems. It was discussed at the 1940 Philco. A few liberals like Rothman took it seriously enuf to debate with them, but most of fandom either laughed at or ignored the movement.

F Stanislaus Prosody - Pename of Cyril Kornbluth.

PSD - Pretty Scientist's Daughter, symbol of stock characters in hack science-fiction.

pseudoscience - Scientific explanations which actually clash with accepted scientific belief, but by glossing-over pass for plausibility to the untutored minds of Fantastic Adventures' audience and other children. The use of the word to describe science-fiction in general is fiercely fought by lovers of the literature.

pseuicide - Also called pseudocide and some unprintable names.

Early in 1941, just before Boskone I was to take place, Earl Singleton's roommate made known that he had committed suicide. Singleton was comparatively new in the field, but had become a leading figure since the Chicon, and the occurrence was a great shock. Numerous poems and issues of fanzines were dedicated to him, and considerable debate about the ethics of suicide took place. It was whispered in some circles that a girl had been involved, and the Futurians never stopped wondering why he did it.

Several months later, various fans began to notice phony things about the circumstances; for instance, Earl's parents had come up from Texas and taken away his remains within a day of his death. Widner, who was on the ground, began investigating, and the report that it was a hoax spread. After that the researchers turned their attention to finding out who all had been in on it form the first, chief curiosity centering around Trudy Kuslan.

That fall Singelton, who was reported to be working for the Government in Washington, visited Warner in Hagerstown, giving as his name the name of a Washington roommate, and subscribed to Spaceways, Warner mentioned the visit and his suspicions to Speer some months later, and the F tracked zombie to its lair. No other fan saw Singleton after the pseuicide, tho Widner received and engagement announcement and it has never been learned just why es pulled the hoax.

PSFS - The Philadelphia Science Fiction Society, founded by Rothman as a chapter of the SFL in 1934. Other members have been Ossie Trains, John Baltadonis, Robert Madle, Jack Agnew, Alexander Philips, Rusty Barron, and others. Its publishing house was Comet. In fan feuds it was generally been against Wollheim, but always good-naturedly. The PSFS has been a branch of the SFL, ISA, and Science Fictioneers. In the 1940s the club became almost dormant, but even in the midst of the war, when most of its members where in the armed forces, a PSFS News would drop into the mailbox at the most unexpected times.

psychoanalyses - Psychoanalysis is really a therapeutic treatment for upset mental conditions. The word was misused by Speer and Rothman for the expositions of their psychologies, later called autoanalyses. However, it was found that talking it out actually did have some value in reducing tension and getting perspective on oneself.

The Futurians say that various of their number have visited professional psychiatrists at times and caused the psychiatrists to seek long vacations.

pun - The lowest form of a joke, even if Shakespeare did use them. Ackerman is fandom's outstanding Shakespearean in this regard. When double-inversoin can be implied, he doesn't do badly at all. Typical example: "Any report of my being in a Port of Embarkation must have come out of somebody's Bottle of Port. Am busily fitting the Battle" Fort Mac at this point of Embarrakation" All too often, tho, Ackerman deserves Dr. Johnson's criticism: "A quibble is to Shakespeare what luminous vapors are to the traveler; he follows it at all adventures; it is sure to lead him out of his way, and sure to engulf him in the mire. It has some malignant power over his mind, and its fascinations are irresistible. Whatever be the dignity or profundity of his disquisition, whether he be enlarging knowledge or exalting affection, whether he be arousing attention with incidents or enchaining it in suspense, let by a quibble spring up before him and he leaves his work unfinished. A quibble, poor and barren as it is, gave him such delight that he was content to purchase it by the sacrifice of reason, propriety, and the truth." -"The Pun is Mightier than the Sword!"

publications - "Fanzines" has generally been used as synonymous with this, tho it mite seem logically that publications include fanzines and also booklets, pamflets, circulars, leaflets, etc.

publicity - The principal avenue for fandom to be presented to the general public has been the pro stf magazines. Because of the necessity for keeping new recruits coming in, fandom has been eager to get publicity, but has gagged at publicity such as the Time writeup of the 1939 convention, which makes it out to be a lot of kids avidly interested in the prozines. Notices have been secured in various local papers when conventions were being held, and a few mentions of local club meetings in minor journals, almost invariably with some inaccuracies. Posters have been put up in windows announcing conventions, banners strung around the hall, and fans parading down the street in costume have attracted notice of passersby, but many feel that that only serves to confirm the misimpressions given by the Time and New Yorker writeups. One of the duties consistently allotted to general fan organization when they've been planned is handling of public relations. Favorable publicity in an unexpected medium was Anthony Boucher's detective story "Rocket to the Morgue", with a background of stf authors and fans.

publishing - Because many fanzines print anything they receive, and alteration of the writers' wording is frown upon, the "editor" of fanzines often has little function aside from publishing. In some cases fans with mimeos do part of the mechanical work for less favored editors, and in the case of servifans or those in cooperatives like the LA4FS, he may have other fan cutting stencils for him. IN such cases, the work of the mere "editor" approaches a vanishing point. So it is customary in fandom to give credit to whoever does the dirty work by speaking of "publishers" instead of "editors of fan publications.

publishing house - In fandom, a person or group with a distinctive name followed by 'publications" , " Press", or equivalent. Frequently it designates the publications of only one person, occasionally of a group of friends, and sometimes of diverse persons scattered over the country. IN the latter cases it my or may not indicate that the members assist each other and confer on policy and practices.

Publishing houses in fandom include the Futile Press, Shepherd and Wollheim, Choctaw Publications, Comet Publications, Ego-Coop, Michel-Wollheim, the tetrahedron sign, Taurasi-Thompson, United Publications, Cosmic Publications, Galactic Publications, Green Jester Publications, Empress Publications, United Publications, Vulcan Publications, LuGerKus, ghu publications, Futurian Publishers' Group, Novacious Pubs, Starlight Publication, the Moonstruck Press, the Moonrakers, Dixie Press, Aimless Publications, Bodacious Publication, Nova Press, dyktawo pubs, MFS Publications, the doubeldoubletoilandtroube mimeograph, ASP, Black Diamond Publications, FSF, Sanfucious Publications, Vulcan Publications, Fubar Pubs, and Curfew Publications.

pure fantasy - (Wollheim) - Fantasy whose only believability is in the reader's artificial acceptance of it for the sake of the story. It may take beliefs which were once widely held, such as Hellenic mythology, but if it does it must mix in a modern element, otherwise you're in the providence of weird fiction. Also there may be a gesture at a pseudoscientific or "you can't be sure" explanation, but this doesn't make it science fiction, because the explanation isn't to be taken seriously.

Pure fantasy as a regular form appeared late, aside from fairy tales of children and tales allegedly for children (such as Lewis Caroll's masterpieces). The "modern mythology" of Unknown was for the most part pure fantasy.

purist - A duck that insists on observing all the old rules of grammar (word-use, spelling, syntax, punctuation, capitalization, ktp).

purple - The common color of hektografy, but also the dye of ghughuism. says wollheim, "once acknowledge ghughuism, and you will be saved, even though you spend the rest of your life fighting ghughu or putting up all sorts of antigods. For _your_soul_knows_, and nothing, I repeat, NOTHING your fallible brain may do thereafter, can erase the purple tinge of truth from your soul.... Every one who partakes of your pseudo-Religion in 'opposition' to ghughu, also become at once a ghughuist with a purple soul, because eat the very sight of ghughuism, no matter how unfavorably portrayed, the soul cries out in recognition and leaps to embrace and be embraced by ghughu. purple is the soul of all those you contact about ghughuism. purple-souled Morojo, purple-should Pogo, . . . " The FooFooist remedy for all this is to remove the soul in case it become troublesome, tho those who may carry purple-soiled souls around with them do not find that they hinder them in any way from being foo-blue FooFooists, and despising the splitting upon ghughuism and all its advocacy, which certainly marks them as different form the depraved craters who wear ghughist titles.

Says rothman (with capitals suppressed, of course)-- "Add this: Since this manuscript has been read by wollheim, the ghu, and rothman, archbishop of philadelphia, and the blessings of ghu put upon it, all those who read this in the future will have their souls dyed purple and will be immune to the depraved propaganda written by FOO-ball Speer."

Data entered by Peter Barker