My First Magazine

The cover looks like the work of Basil Gogos, but I can’t confirm it.

Long before I spent a decade editing magazines, I was a big fan of nerd periodicals like Starlog, Fangoria, and of course Dragon magazine. These days, most of that sort of nerd periodical takes the form of websites, some of them excellent but none of them with the smell and texture of the old rags.

The first magazine I remember buying regularly was Famous Monsters of Filmland, then still shepherded by the late, great Forry Ackerman. Incidentally, my first fandom was movie monsters, so I also had the Creature Feature cards, the Aurora models, and any other monster-related thing I could find in my relatively rural town.

Famous Monsters sprang back to life a few ¬†years ago. I picked up and admired a few issues, but of course it’s not the same. Everything’s prettier and slicker, and I’ve already read about many of its topics online.

Of course there’s also a huge difference in content; I began reading the magazine in the 70s, when there wasn’t nearly as much geek literature, film, comics, and art as we enjoy today. Thus, a lot of the articles I read were of films ten, twenty, thirty, forty, or more years old. When I was the perfect geek age of 13,¬†Star Wars heralded a new wave of SF, horror, and fantasy in the late 70s and throughout the 80s, so soon I had the best of both worlds, the old and the new.

What was your first nerd magazine? Are there any you still read? Where do you go online to keep up with film, TV, books, comics, and all the other great media?



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