Mark Owings (1945-2009)

Mark Owings, a founding member of the Baltimore Science Fiction Society, died of pancreatic cancer on December 30.

As the late Jack Chalker told the story, BSFS was created at the suggestion of David Ettlin, who in 1961-1962 was attending Washington SF Association meetings with Chalker, Mark Owings and Enid Jacobs:  

Coming back from a WSFA New Year’s party, crowded in the back of a bus, Ettlin proposed that we form a club to meet on the weekends between WSFA. We weren’t math majors, so we picked second and fourth Saturdays (WSFA was and is first and third Fridays) and these days are often not a week after WSFA but the next night!

The first meeting was in Dave Ettlin’s family basement, with the principals present, and Joe Mayhew from DC. In the early days Ettlin was the big recruiter and the club mushroomed to a dozen or fifteen people. The meetings, held in members’ homes, were popular and we became a nationally recognized SF club. Mark, Joe, and I are still members of the club [Jack was writing in 1996]. Dave Ettlin, now editor of the Baltimore County edition of the Sunpapers, still keeps in touch.

Chalker and Owings collaborated on two major bibliographic works, The Index to the Science-Fantasy Publishers and The Revised H.P. Lovecraft Bibliography.

[Via Elspeth Kovar.]

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