Let’s Hear It For the WOOF Guy

By John Hertz: Guy H. Lillian III has confirmed he’ll be the Official Editor of WOOF this year, hurrah!

WOOF, the World Order Of Faneditors, is an amateur publishing association (or “amateur press association”) whose contributions are collected, and whose distributions are issued, at and from (but not by or for) the World Science Fiction Convention.

The 2018 Worldcon will be 16-20 August at San Jose, California, U.S.A.  Some Worldcons have nicknames, but this one, the 76th, is just called Worldcon 76.

An apa is an assemblage of amateurs’ publications.  You send copies of yours and get back a distribution containing yours and everybody else’s.

The central receiver-sender of WOOF is the Official Editor.

In the S-F community we borrowed the notion of apas from another hobby, amateur journalism.  What seems the first apa was theirs, founded 1876 (NAPA the National Amateur Press Ass’n), still ongoing.  The first in the S-F community was FAPA the Fantasy Amateur Press Ass’n, founded 1937, also still ongoing.

Apas come and go, each with its own rules, customs, and jokes.  Most apas have been quarterly or monthly.  I’m in one that’s weekly.  WOOF is yearly, founded 1976 by Bruce Pelz.  As Suford Lewis said, he had a fruitful imagination.  Some say his epitaph, among us anyhow, should be Si monumentum requiris circumspice. (Latin, “If you seek his monument, look around you.”

The number 76 keeps recurring in this article.  I can’t help it.  You might have wanted the 2018 distribution to be WOOF Trombone or WOOF Osmium. You could argue that WOOF is brassy (or, I suppose, that I am), or that it slides.  You could observe that osmium is the densest naturally-occurring element (or, I suppose, quarrel with “naturally”).  However, the 2018 WOOF distribution will be WOOF 43.

Even better!  Technetium! Irreproducible results! Nice try.

WOOF 43 should be the 43rd WOOF distribution.  Alas, it seems that the last time we tried to comprehend our history, we got it wrong.  There has not been a WOOF distribution every year since its beginning.  We knew that, but miscounted.

Apas, among us anyway, are part of the world of fanzines.  Our fanzines are amateur magazines by and for S-F fans – note that some fans are pros.  As Patrick Nielsen Hayden says, and he should know, fanwriting is not a junior varsity for pro writing; they’re different artforms.  We started S-F apas to distribute fanzines.  After a while apazines took on a life of their own.

The Fanzine Lounge at this year’s Worldcon will be hosted by Craig Glassner.  Look for a WOOF drop-off box there after the con opens on Thursday.  WOOF will be collated there at 2 p.m. on Sunday, August 12th.  A Charlie Williams cover is already in the works.

I may have coined the name Fanzine Lounge at the 42nd Worldcon.  Or maybe you did.

This year’s copy count for WOOF is 50, i.e. 50 copies required of each contribution.  Any extra copies will be for sale, US$3 to contributors (who get one free), US$5 otherwise, proceeds to benefit the international traveling-fan funds TAFF (Trans-Atlantic Fan Fund) and DUFF (Down Under Fan Fund).

If you do not expect to be present at collation, please make your own arrangements.  Some long-time WOOFers have seldom been able to attend the con at all, instead sending contributions via friends, providing for return envelopes and postage as needed.

Usually WOOF distributions consist of contributions stapled together, and at least some copies of the distribution are sent by real-mail.  Please consider accordingly the media by which and onto which you publish your contribution.  Paper of 20 or 24 lb. weight, and 8 1/2 x 11” dimensions or size A4, is preferred.

Various apas have tales of fans’ sending strange paper or even slices of bologna.  Some practices are more honored in the breach than in the observance.

What to write about?  Well, cabbages, kings, why the sea is boiling hot (I think it’s the influence of the sun, myself), whether pigs have wings; rum-pots, crack-pots, and how are you Mr. Wilson?

The OE this year may be able to print some contributions sent him by E-mail; ask him, ghliii [at] yahoo [dot] com.  You may also write to him at 1390 Holly Ave., Merritt Island, FL 32952, U.S.A.  You may also mail contributions to Craig Glassner, 750 Linden Ave., San Bruno, CA 94066, U.S.A.  You may also write to or call me, 236 S. Coronado St., No. 409, Los Angeles, CA 90057, U.S.A., (213)384-6622 (Pacific Daylight Time).

It may be worth mentioning that from Radio Station WOOF, Hoople, Southern North Dakota, Peter Schickele while ignorant of WOOF the apa so far as I know has broadcast music of the composer he discovered to the world, P.D.Q. Bach.

I knew Bruce Pelz, and have been associated awhile with this WOOF, but it would take a less trepid fan than I (I am not, however, a tepid fan) to venture whether it, younger than Schickele’s, was named ignorantly of him.  Roger Hill’s WOOFzine has long been Report from Hoople.  And on that note, which I hope is not flat –

2 thoughts on “Let’s Hear It For the WOOF Guy

  1. Never made the P.D.Q. Bach connection before now, though I’m a huge fan since the 1970’s. Even seen two live concerts of his work conducted by the professor with the Cleveland Orchestra.

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