iOTA – issues 01 to 16

As part of the history of Australian sf fandom that I’m working on I have been publishing a small fanzine called iOTA containing reports on the progress of the project, some general thoughts on fandom past and present, reviews of old fanzines and reprints of various items previously published in Australian fanzines.

I put this project aside in early 2018 to undertake commissioned historical work but have recently been able to return to it and have published a new issue of iOTA in the past few days.  A couple of people have asked me about back copies of iOTA so I thought it might be convenient to put them here for general access.  I also have a small distribution list of people who I send iOTA to direct and issues can also be found on

Here are links to the previous 17 issues.  I’ll probably put any future issues of iOTA in as separate posts rather than including them here.

iOTA 01 December 2016

iOTA 02 January 2017

iOTA 03 February 2017

iOTA 04 March 2017

iOTA 05 April 2017

iOTA 06 May 2017

iOTA 07 June 2017

iOTA 08 July 2017

iOTA 09 August 2017

iOTA 10 September 2017

iOTA 11 October 2017

iOTA 12 November 2017

iOTA 13 December 2017

iOTA 14 January 2018

iOTA 15 February 2018

iOTA 16 March 2018

iOTA 17 June 2020

Heritage of the Air in Canberra

I got back from the Heritage of the Air conference in Canberra a few days ago but have been trying to catch up since then. It was an event sponsored by ICOMOS so there was a lot of heritage discussion as well as aviation, which I found interesting, and a good time was had by all as far as I could see. It was held at University House at the Australian National University. Breakfasts and evening drinks were among the highlights of the event. Here are some photos which include one of me with James Knightly, Peter Hobbins and Matt Henderson and another of Roger Mayer talking to Robin Johnson. In addition to this I spent a day at the National Library photographing old fanzines and a few hours doing a bit of work at the Australian War Memorial. The rest of the time I spent walking around looking at things. The city has changed a lot since we left there in 1987 but not so much since we finished the Tax Office history a decade ago.

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In addition to hanging around, I gave a paper on the role of the Council of Defence in establishing aviation in Australia in 1919 and 1920. Here is a copy of what I said. There is a longer version which I will get around to publishing one of these days.

From the Same Root

Talking about history and a history of Australian fandom

David Grigg and Perry Middlemiss do a fine podcast called Two Chairmen Talking which is about what they’ve been reading and watching recently, mostly science fiction or stuff related to it.  Back in Episode 5 there is about half an hour of me being interviewed about history and the history of Australian sf fandom I’ll get back to next year.  So if you want to listen to it, try here:

Episode 5: An Incomplete History of Serious Events