Bill and Ann Hupe

From Fanlore
(Redirected from Bill Hupe)
Jump to: navigation, search
Name: Bill Hupe, Ann Hupe
Alias(es): Ann K. Meyer (?)
Type: fanzine publisher/zine editor; fanzine agents and distributors; printers for other fanzine publishers; indexers
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.

Bill and Ann Hupe both were fan writers, but they were best known as fan publishers, and then re-publishers and agents for other fannish presses.

Abode of Strife was the first of several titles the Hupe's published themselves, starting in 1983. By the early 1990s, they added agenting of zines for other fans and publishers. Bill and Ann Hupe abruptly gafiated zines and fandom in spring/summer 1996.

They personally passed on their catalogs, business, contacts, and agreements to Peg Kennedy and New Leaf Productions, something that turned out to be a disaster. See Bill and Ann Leave Fandom.

The Hupe's departure from the zine business also left the field wide open for Agent With Style to go from simply publishing her own zines to agenting for others. [1]

Bill passed away in October 2009. His obituary was published in the San Gabriel Valley Tribune.[2]

Zine Publisher Names

Bill worked together with Peg Kennedy to edit and publish their own zines as well as agenting and distributing for other fanzine publishing. Ann, who worked full time, provided the financial backing for their publication efforts and also edited a number of the zines that they published.



The Honorary K/Ser Award for the biggest boon to fandom in '94-to Bill Hupe, "with hugs & kisses, for his excellent work in publishing, agenting, reprinting, and distributing zines. And he's a nice guy, to boot." -- given at Shore Leave.

In His Own Words: 1992

In remembering Gene Roddenberry after his passing Bill wrote:
"How has Gene Roddenberry affected my life? Well, basically most of what I do now is because of him. Compared to my job as a computer consultant, which takes up very little of my time, putting zines together on the other hand, is a full time job. I actually got into Star Trek fandom over ten years ago through a science fiction class at the university I was attending at the time. A class project turned into my first fanzine..."[3]

In Their Own Words: 1993

Almost to this date ten years ago [May 1993], our first fanzine Abode of Strife #1 debuted in time to be turned in for our Science Fiction Literature class at California State University at Fullerton. When the professor found out that two of his students were into Star Dreck (as he called it), he said that a fanzine would be our class project (it sure beat making paper mache' aliens, or the other suggestion of several of us getting together and doing a sequel to Hardware Wars called 'The Toasters Strike Back'). Edited by Bill Hupe and Ann Meyer (now Dr. Ann Hupe), the first print run sold out immediately, as did the second; a handful of the third resides in our basement yet. We realized that improve was an operative word, which we did over the next few issues. A move to Michigan and Ann's starting of medical school forced a year and a half off from new material. The time was spent improving and soliciting writers and artists. 1986 MediaWest*Con saw the premiere of issue #6, 'Shadow's, featuring several prominent fannish artists, and one professional. That issue won the 1986 FanQ for 'Best Star Trek Zine'. Some of the artists from that issue did work for one or more of issues 19, 20, and 21, all premiering together at 1993 MediaWest*Con. Including, Marie Williams, who did the cover for this issue, winner of the 1992 FanQ for 'Best Star Trek Artist', and Michael C. Goodwin again outdid himself for issue 20 (Betsy Fisher's 'Ry') that stands on par with any of his other bookcovers on the sf bookshelf at your local bookstore. In the interim between issues 6 and 19-21, over a 150 writers and artists have contributed to the pages of 'Abode of Strife', other editors have assisted and actually guest-edited issues (Barb Erickson, Susan Clarke, Marie Williams, Peg Kennedy [who won two years running for FanQ 'Best Star Trek Zine/Editor' and is up for a third and final time in 1993), an impressive number of FanQ's and nominations for stories and art found within these pages, and hundreds of pages of Star Trek fiction, as well as Star Wars and some other fandoms that found their way into Abode of Strife's pages before zines for that fandom or our multimedia fanzine Lions and Tigers were created. We also started Authorized Reprints of older zines with the original editor's permission some time along the way, and then soon thereafter publishing outright zines for other editors, and then finally a few years ago, newsletters and other like materials for Star Trek fan-oriented groups like Com-link, Beverlyophiles, etc... It's been a lot of fun and we've gained hundreds of new friends allover the world in the meantime. The last few months have been like no other wrapping up the edited, typing, layout, and more, as well as the printing of all the new publications for MediaWest (the number of master pages for new MediaWest publications has now climbed over 15,000 pages. Sleep in the last few weeks has been reduced to a couple of hours a night. Next year, with our luck, will be even more. But as long as everyone is enjoying reading these zines, as well as the overwhelming 'pitching in' response when we asked 2 people if they'd like to help bind in trade for a contributor's copy at MediaWest (and we now have entire 'binding parties' scheduled!); this makes all of our effort seem more than returned. [4]

In His Own Words: 2006

I guess you’d say the first thing I did as an active fan was writing, which is something I’ve always loved to do. So it provided me with an outlet to write, and have other people look at and edit my writing so I could improve it. Another of my loves is traveling, so driving to convention so sell allowed me to pass through Yosemite and other places I’ve always wanted to see whilst en route. Not to mention receiving invites to Australia, Japan, and Germany, that through the wonders of frequent flier miles, I was actually able to do back in the years just after putting my wife through medical school and working 2 1/2 full time jobs at once. We were dead broke, but free flights, and staying with friends I had met through the writing and publishing meant I could go to these places.... Without my involvement in fandom, I would not be where I am today, living in one of the most beautiful places on the planet, working at what I love. It is unfortunate that I am not as involved in fandom as I once was, but it had been time to part ways on that level, and was fortunate enough to be able to use that experience in my work today.

Putting Miles on the Road

An example of the driving Bill did is from 1995: "We regret that we will not be at Shoreleave although we have Alien Worlds there, selling for us.... Bill had to ultimately decide not to attend this con this year as it would have required him to drive to the east coast two weekends in a row (with only 2 days back in Michigan!), come home from the convention and leave to drive to Alaska 3 days later. Although Bill is known for some insane (or stupid, according to Peg), stints, (Seattle to Lansing nonstop for 41 hours -- 8 times in one year), this wouldn't work with Ann's Dodge Caravan needing a complete check-up before traveling the Alaskan Highway and some of the far-flung remote always Ann and Bill and 3 friends want to visit." [5]


The Hupes published a number of catalogs, frequency unknown.

In the September 1992 catalog, there was a an explanation regarding slash of any rating and explicit het: " material (any fandom) will be found on colored paper: those offended by adult material, please simply remove and recycle (or discard) the non white pages."

A 1995 catalog is here, archive link.

You had to have good eyesight to read the catalogs! Some samples from the September 1992 one are below.

On occasion Hupe's flyers would be created by the zine publishers. Below is a zine flyer created by the editors of Manacles Press. It is easy to read and in color, unlike Bill and Peg's typical zine flyer or catalog. On the back they listed other zine publishers who were also agented by Bill Hupe.

Blakesindex and Other Zines

In May 1983, they released their first zine, Abode of Strife, issue #1. Bill also worked with editor Pat Nussman, and with editor Sheila Paulson, publishing many of their Fan Q award-winning zines. Bill also wrote one fan novel, Shadows.

Among other fandoms, Bill and Ann were huge Blake's 7 fans, and in the early nineties, Bill edited Blakesindex, proposed to be a full index of B7 zines, with stories listed by author, title, and subject, and poetry and art. Although obviously a huge amount of work, it was far short of a full index, as several large B7 presses, such as Ashton Press, (publishers of the long running B7 series Southern Seven and Southern Comfort), among others, weren't included. Hupe's fanzine catalogs are also a valuable source of bibliographic information for past zines.

The Empire and The Complexities

It may be hard, today, to imagine the vastness of the Hupe enterprise and how much fans depended on it, for better or worse, for their supply of fanworks.

In 1992, Bill remarked in his September catalog that he and/or Ann were "attending 30+ conventions a year," an astounding feat of time, planning, and expenses.

Simply sending and receiving the goods before online communication would have been an exercise in patience and frustration. Most communication was done via the Postal Service, something that fans today would find unbearably slow. This communication also required a lot of organization, time, SASEs, constant attention to postal rates (foreign, domestic, and everything in between), incoming and out-going boxes of zines, paperwork regarding who had sent what to who and who was owed money or unsold zines, dealing with complaints regarding service, the actual soliciting, editing, publishing, and publicity regarding some zines, storage woes, and the attending of cons to peddle the goods.

An example of postal complexities explanation, something that despite this description, required patience and certainly translated into intricate communication failures:
An '*' next to your name on the label means that this is your last mailing unless you either drop us a postcard asking to remain on, or place an order. "***" following a fanzine's price means this is a very light or digest fanzine. This is the price for the fanzine if ordering at least one fanzine that is full sized (without a "***" coding). If you are ordering only "***" coded fanzines, please add $1.65 to your total order. Overseas: see next page. Canada: Add $1.50 for the first zine, and $1.50 for the second, and 40 cents each thereafter. Otherwise, all prices include US domestic postage bookrate (insured if ordering 2 or more zines, add 50 cents if you wish insurance on single zine orders -- otherwise, is at your risk). OR... for 1st Class Priority, add $1.50 for the first zine, 50 cents for the second, and 25 cents each there after. Finally, if you wish your order shipped in a padded mailer, add $1.00 to your entire order (regardless of rate) and please specify this is for a padded mailer. Overseas: Xed-out items are North America only. Unless at a convention, orders are usually shipped within 24 or 48 hours of receipt of order. If you have not received your order within a month after ordering, please inquire: we can claim insurance on orders less than 6 months old, and unless you have been contacted otherwise (except overseas) there is no reason whatsoever you should not have your order in hand. Or, you can call us at [phone number redacted] EST. We do experience a 1% or so mail loss (incoming and outgoing). Overseas people and contributors using the East Lansing/Trowbridge Rd address: this was a rented postal box and the business went bankrupt in July. EVERYTHING now goes to Lamb Road. This also includes ALL submissions for any fanzine Peg and Bill are editing....CANADA: Your friendly excise officials have been making shipping interesting this summer by suddenly nabbing our zine parcels for GST collection. By the time we were able to sort everything out, the Ontario excise office finally understand our sales do not remotely come close to the threshold limit. Alas, you will still have to pay GST, collection fees, and customs (if applicable) on your zines. However, shipping does seem to go much better if no more than CN $40 in zines is in a single packet. Therefore, we recommend for orders exceeding the CN$40 to send us enough postage money to break your order into 2 or 3 (if necessary) parcels.

Zines as a Business

By '87, Bill Hupe had a double-page spread in Datazine (a long-running slash and gen adzine) advertising his by then 25 fanzines. This was the beginning of a period where the Hupes (along with Peg Kennedy) gradually became media fandom's largest fanzine publishers and re-publishers, putting out their own issues as well as obtaining permission from several other publishers to agent and reprint various titles. This meant spending most weekends schlepping hundreds, if not thousands, of zines from con to con, across the country, then spending 90% of the con sitting in the dealer's room. At a time when adzines came out infrequently, many fans only found zines they wanted because of the Hupes, and Peg Kennedy's willingness to drag zines everywhere they went. Peg & Bill kept lists of their zines looking for submissions as well -- a lot of fans (especially gen fans) had their first stories published in one of Bill, Ann or Peg's zines. All of the zines they edited were gen, but over the years they agented many slash zines. When April Valentine had so much trouble with mailorder that she changed the name and policy to InPersonPress, ordering her zines from Bill was the only way to get them if you couldn't make it to a con in Maryland.

Bill also sold used fanzines, pricing them according to their condition, about half or two thirds their original price. He then added on a 15% commission.

And expanding out from zines, they also sold VHS conversions of British shows (Sapphire and Steel, Pros (of course) and others), and agented fan art for many artists. Bill and Peg also started taking fans' orphan zine collections when they gafiated and selling them for 15% over cover price. Bill also ran the Dealer's Room at MediaWest, probably the biggest existing con for fanzines.

The next step after putting out his own zines, and agenting other people's zines, was fanzine packager -- editors give him copy (on a disk by this time), he did no-frills reproduction and mailing: standard xeroxing on cheap paper, no fancy fonts, no discernible graphic design, no special handling for art (if there is art), and charged about $22 for a zine (or $11 for a disk with that zine on it).

Bill was also the earliest fanzine distributors to offer e-zines.
I was looking at the last note from Bill Hupe, and he lists 8 e-zines [6] all done in Acrobat, the Adobe program that allows you to make files that are printable and readable on almost any computer, but doesn't allow you to fiddle with the files. We've talked about e-zines a few times here, but I didn't realize that people were already doing this.

Way cool! Has anyone actually ordered one of these? The zines are cheaper (though not as much as you'd think: between $4 and 11 dollars for PC or Mac disk versions of these zines, which you either read online, or print out yourself).

Most of them are Gen, but there was an Uncle slash zine (The Old World Affair) and a Garrison's Gorillas slash zine (In Love & War)

Bill actually calls them D zines, for disk zines, but I think naming it after only one of the possible distribution methods is not a good idea. [7]
However, since Bill Hupe exited fanzine distribution in 1996, the impetus to offer ezines may have come from Peg Kennedy and Linda Knight who took over his business in July 1996 in the form of New Leaf Publications:
"D-zines (zines on disks) The following zines are now available on disk IBM (windows) and Mac. They are written on ACROBAT -- which Peg & Linda have purchased and are licensed for -- these disks MUST be read by ACROBAT; they DO NOT load into your computer's word processor. The Reader can be downloaded on line or purchased from us $3.00 IBM $6.00 Mac (sorry, it takes 3 disks to load the reader on Mac). See previous mailers or our full catalog for breakdown of the zine. **Rebel Destinies 2 - B7 - $4.50 OR download $4.25."[8]
Peg Kennedy also began emailing the fanzine catalog to interested buyers - something that many fanzine publishers had been doing. However, to the consternation of some fanzine publishers, a copy of the flyer was posted online in 1997. It is unclear whether the flyer posting was done at either Bill's or Peg's request:
I was surfing the Web a while ago, which I do from time to time to make sure no references to [my press] or my fanfic are floating about out there, and was startled to find a page listing fanzines available from Bill Hupe, who retired back in July of last year. They had typed in an entire flyer of his which listed just about every fanzine in the world. It had typos - "New Summer's End" for example, and "Nudge Nudge Wink Wink 13" .... The good thing is that these were listed as agented zines and thus did not have addresses other than Bill's; the bad news is that my name was listed (as author on my zines) and I'd rather not see my name and "slash" together anywhere on the Web, and of course, the really bad news is that people can't actually order these zines from Bill and they included an order form on the page. I'm really starting to hate this stuff. I have never given *anyone* permission to advertise my zines on the Web, ever. This just *PISSES ME OFF*. If any fans find this, and try to get my zines this way, they're gonna get pissed off when nothing happens."[9]

Agents vs Publishers

A large portion of Bill and Anne's business was agenting for other fanzine editors and publishers.

A zine agent could do one of two things: they could resell stock that another publisher had printed. This type of agent carried none of the upfront publication costs and risks. [10] Or they could be responsible for the printing of new copies which they had to fund themselves. [11] This type of agent faced a greater financial risk, especially in the days before print on demand. The Hupes offered both kinds of services. For those zines that they actually reprinted in order to agent on behalf of the publishers, they would add their name and address alongside that of the actual publishers of the zine in the zine itself.

The number of zines the Hupes edited and published was quite small when compared to their fanzine catalog (see list below). However, because of the size of their catalog, many fans were confused for years thinking the Hupes edited and published every zine that they sold and that they had exclusive rights to the zines. Often when the actual fanzine publishers attempted to sell their own zines at events, they were accused of being fanzine pirates. So murky were the agency/distribution waters that Bill Hupe and Peg Kennedy were themselves accused of selling pirated zines at Farpoint in 1993. [12]

In 1993, Bill Hupe took over Pon Farr Press and the zines published by Wendy Rathbone and made some comments on how to distinguish "real zines" from copies:

... at Media West* Con, we started agenting Pon Farr Press fanzines; both their new and reprinted titles. As some of the reprints of foil covers do not turn out all that well, some people have questioned (rightly so), their legitimacy, and in such cases we produced the publisher's inventory sheet as well as authorization to sell. As of this point in time, the publisher has started to include a notice on the title page if a change of format has occurred. We keep on file a letter of authorization from each and every press we agent for, so if you ever have a question, please feel free to ask us, or even contact the original publisher if you have any doubts.

With this point in mind, Pon Farr Press elected a few days ago to offer us co-publication rights. This means that we agent all of Pon Fan Press titles, and we have permission to produce copies from masters we have been provided with, All volumes that we print ourselves contain a 'printed with permission' statement. If you have any questions, please just ask us, or write Pon Far Press [sic] directly if so inclined.

Addendum -- shortly after we signed on the dotted line with Pon Farr Press, we received the go ahead from Wendy Rathbone as well. We are W pleased to have her zincs along with Pon Far [sic] Press listed in this mailer. In addition Mkashef Enterprises has consented to have her titles agented by us. Each of these editors has a letter of permission on file with us. [13]

Bill's aggressive stance towards unauthorized redistribution of the zines he agented also created confusion. And last, the informal nature of most fanzine agenting fed into the complexity. Few zine publishers and agents signed any agreements, let alone exclusive ones, leaving the field wide open for the Hupes' "ownership" claims. In a time and era when communication was done by letters, verifying the "legitimacy" of the original fanzine publisher could take months.

The issues of agenting vs publishing is one that many other large scale fanzine enterprises have faced, such as Lionheart Distribution and Agent With Style. After Lionheart received a C&D notice by Warner Brothers in 2005, they reopened under the name "Distribution" and made it clear they were only agents, not publishers to reduce their liability.

List of zines that the Hupes edited and published (note: Some of these zines may have only been agented by Bill Hupe and/or Peg Kennedy. This list is subject to verification against the copyright notices in the printed zines)

Controversy One: Open Letters on Zine Pirating

The controversy became stronger in 1993, when two open letters circulated about xeroxing (or zine pirating, to use their language) of in-print zines. The most outrageous rant was from Alexis Fegan Black (co-signed by Wendy Rathbone and MKASHEF), directed wildly to fandom in general (see here for the full letter); the other, slightly calmer argument was from Bill Hupe, directed to Candy Pulleine (basically suggesting that she should make an effort to educate her local Kinkos about zine copyrights and so on) and threatened a Dealer boycott of RevelCon if she didn't address this problem (see here for the full letter).

Other zine editors responded that they didn't believe that fans copying a zine or two for your friends was responsible for the decline in zine sales. They pointed to changes in fandom, the recession at that time, etc. There were comments like "What the hell did he EXPECT for a plump, expensive, Multimedia zine from an editor whose standards have slipped?" and "I don't have the kind of $$$ to buy a $20-25 mixed media zine for the 1/3 in which I might be interested, so I copy that 1/3rd from my friend's copy, and no, I don't feel guilty."

Controversy Two: Profit

Some authors had got pissed off when the Hupes and Peg Kennedy first started taking over printing zines edited and published by other fans in the early 1990s. Their interpretation was that they had granted the original publisher the right to print their story, but that right was not transferable to another publisher. The authors didn't give him reprint permission, just the editors. Some demanded another trib copy. (The conversation about this (and of course, the spread of the Internet) eventually led to authors giving rights to their zine eds for the first year or two, and after that, getting the right to put their stories up on the web.)

Another concern over Bill Hupe and company was that having him agent such a large percentage of zines was leading to the collapse of the fannish mutual promotion network. Zines used to come with ads in the back. It used to be that, once you got that first zine, you had a bunch of addresses for that fandom, and the list grew exponentially as you got more zines. Now, you had to either find an adzine or keep ordering from Bill, who was making a job out of all this.

Other fans felt that reprinting zines interfered with standard practice at the time, which was to not allow copying of a zine while it was in print, but to allow unlimited copying once the zine went out of print. With zines never going out of print, fans didn't ever have a chance to just copy their favorite few stories from a zine for a friend.

Still other people were merely annoyed by how hard it was to shop at his tables: the zines generally weren't organized by fandom, or genre, and there would be boxes and boxes and boxes of them.

By this point, Bill and Peg's operation (Ann was still publishing zines, but wasn't part of the zine agenting business) was so large that a backlash was inevitable.

Others entered the fray on Bill's side, saying that he provided an incalculable service to fans -- providing them access to fanzines that they might never have been able to see or be able to afford, especially fans outside the US, who could use Bill as one-stop-shopping. He also sold for dozens of small presses that couldn't afford to get to many conventions and sell zines for themselves.

Other fan commented:

  • Bill is overworked, and one of the most maligned people in fandom. He also is one of the most generous with his time and energy. Just as well Ann earns a good wage, otherwise he couldn't afford to keep selling the zines -- I know that he doesn't make a profit with the business and I know by how much.[14]
  • Bill took on the zines as his "bit" for fandom and it is sad that people can see it in suspicious light.[15]
  • Bill Hupe had tried to be superman and lost his health, good name and a lot of his spirit over it all.[16]
  • Without Bill I would never have found Slash fandom. I'm from a small town in the middle of nowhere, and fanzines, gen or slash, are very much an underground thing. We spent years trying to find "slash," but it is difficult to find something when you don't even know the vocabulary necessary to ask. He is one of most helpful people I have ever done business with. As an initial contact to fandom we couldn't have asked for a better introduction. Bill has my eternal thanks.[17]
  • I have my problems with what Bill Hupe represents, but he is a nice man who works hard and provides a valuable service to both readers and publishers.[18]
  • "And what about the Bill Hupe's of fandom? These groups are another layer of bloat that fan dollars have to support. Nothing is for free. Pay more at the door, pay more for your zine.[19]
  • "Mr. Hupe, BTW, is currently on my Shit List. At first, I sent him copies of zines to sell; later, as the titles grew, this became impractical, so I authorized him to do his own copies from my masters. And I included very clear instructions on cover stock and binding. COMB binding, to be precise. All spelled out in the letter of authorization for each zine. "All copies should be comb-bound with black combs, not stapled" is what I wrote. So at Zcon a box of zines appeared at someone's table, marked "B HUPE", with copies of my zines, STAPLED. I asked the dealer if they were from Bill, she said yes. Suffice to say I was not pleased. I have sent word to him about this. If it isn't fixed, he won't be agenting [my] zines any longer.[20]

Bill and Ann Leave Fandom

In 1996, Bill announced he was gafiating: "Me and Ann bought 40 acres and we're going to 'live the mundane life'".

Some fans in 1996 recounted this exodus:

Yes, Bill Hupe is out of the zine agenting business. I talked to him on the phone recently, as he agents several zines for us, and he's currently in the process of settling all his accounts and turning the whole business over to Peg Kennedy, and a new partner of hers. He explained that he was getting out of the zine business for several reasons. First, he said, because his wife is a doctor and has accepted a position in a new practice in a very small town in another state, and he doesn't want to start his zine agenting business over again in another location, and have to explain it all to new friends and neighbors and postal workers. But he also said that the main reason he was quitting was that he is simply tired of being threatened and hassled. He explained that there are several fans, or groups of fans, who have harassed him for years, including filing legal action against him, and he's simply and finally fed up. I can't argue with any of his reasons for giving up his business, but I think it will be fandom's loss. I think he has performed a valuable function. He has certainly made things easier for me for the past year and a half. I sent him masters, and he did all the work, including taking my zines to numerous cons, and eventually he mails me a check. Bill didn't mention any health problems to me, although we heard that was one of the reasons he stated at MediaWest Con. RAFFERTY and I expect to give our full support to Peg Kennedy as she takes over, and we wish her the best. [21]
Latest word is that Bill Hupe's business will be taken over so, maybe, zines will stay relatively easy to order. The other story I heard at Mediawest is that one reason that he is taking advantage of moving, to move out of the business is that he is afraid that printing costs are going to soar in the near future and Internet and zines on disc will drive printed ones out of business. I really hope this is not true. Sitting at a terminal is not my idea of a relaxing way to read. [22]

The 1996 Retirement Letters

The Handover to Peg Kennedy

Hupe decided to turn the whole library of unsold zines (both their own, and ones they were agenting for others) to Peg Kennedy and Linda Knights, who named the new enterprise (New Leaf Press/New Leaf Productions).

From Media Monitor #34: "Contact Peg/Linda for new shipping and handling costs before ordering. Prices have gone up since they took over from Bill Hupe and must ship from Washington. Peg and Linda have taken over most of Bill Hupe's inventory and are handling a great many other publications, (gen, adult, and slash), for various writers and presses. There are hundreds of titles available and representation in almost any fandom you could desire. Please send a SASE and $1.00 for their latest catolog."

But Peg didn't have the in-place group of helpful fans that Bill did, and within a few months, grew completely overwhelmed by the business. Many fans started to ask what was going on, that they'd sent in money for orders and heard nothing back. Months of no information followed.

From a disappointed fan's letter in The K/S Press in February 1998: "Peg Kennedy apparently took on more than she could deal with when she assumed control of Bill Hupe’s empire. She's got lots of people from many fandoms angry at her."

Then, some of the zine editors agented by Peg (ones that had their addresses in their zines) heard from a non-fan that a huge storage locker, with thousands of zines and pieces of art, worth thousands of dollars, had been auctioned off by a storage company for non-payment. Kathy Resch and some other fan publishers got together and bought the assortment of zines from the man, (some ruined by water damage) and tried to as fairly as possible partially pay back those people who had lost the most money. For more information, see Operation 'Zine Rescue.

Eventually Bill and Ann settled in Alaska where they operated a small photography and publication press The TwinS puBlications with their Australian friend, Susan Batho.

Bill's departure from publishing and agenting, especially in such a sudden way, was damaging. Fandom suffered in terms of lost fanworks, loss of trust, and many other hits. But it was an especially hard blow to small fandoms:
Flightpath #7 should have been released two years ago, but with the demise of Bill Hupe's US distribution network we lost touch with something like forty core fans of UFO, and this meant our print run had become impracticably small. So, with great regret, FP7 was put on the shelf about three quarters complete. It's still there, and we'd love to get it down and publish it, so ... if you're by any chance a fan of UFO... [23]

The 1996 Kennedy Letters

Fans' Comments: From Various Zine Catalogs

  • "During my last phone call to Bill, he told me that we must have over two hundred Christmas cards from our readers!" [24]
  • "I have enjoyed the zines I have gotten from you very much. One thing has bothered me - a minor problem, but I'd appreciate it if you could fix it. In many of the zines I have received from you, I have been annoyed by the incorrect use of the word "peaked" when you mean "piqued". An example can by found in your ad for ST:TNG "Time Will Tell": "I (Picard), on the other hand, have my curiosity peaked as to why he has so suddenly chosen a change in his career." You do not write the stories, or edit many, I realize. However, I would appreciate your doing all you can to stop this misuse of the word "peak". Thank you very much." [25]
  • "Excuse me, but I have to say this. Oh My God! Yes, yes, yes, aaaaaaahhhhhhh! Well, I'm sure that you get the point. I was totally surprised by how quickly you sent me my zine order. Believe me, it is every zine reader's dream to hear the doorbell ring, the postal carrier holding a humongous box of zines with their name on it. When we talked on the phone, I thought you said you were going to send the zines on the Thursday after Thanksgiving week so you can imagine that I went totally hyper, looney as the locoweed, the old ticker was doing triple time, mind on another plane, the word excitement would be too tame a word. What can I say but thank you, thank, thank you, and 1000 thank yous. I really appreciate the fact that you had gone to the trouble of packing them so well and as usual the zines were in mint condition. Your service is as always excellent bar none. You guys are like way cool cats. Again, thank for the best weeks of zine reading that I ever had and it came just in time for the four-day Thanksgiving weekend." [26]

General Fan Comments

  • "Being a fannish mogul *is* hard work. Just ask Bill Hupe. But Bill ran his empire with goodwill, good nature, and unquestioned honesty.... I dealt with Bill as an agent for my Trek prints years ago, then parted amicably because Bill just had too much on his plate. He put out horrible zines, bless him, *but* he was scrupulous and honest. He made mistakes from time to time, but always tried to make good on them. He meant well, and for the most part ran his huge empire well, considering its volume. His biggest mistake was in kindheartedly but misguidedly turning over his empire to Peg Kennedy when he was ready to "retire" from it all. Peg had no business sense, was perpetually broke, and had always been terrible at handling money. But even she, despite using zine pre-order money to support herself and foolishly hoping it would all turn out all right sometime in the hazy future, never seemed to me to have the malicious bent, the truly calculating, deliberate intent to do wrong that She Of Whom We Are Speaking demonstrates, IMO, again and again." [27]

Memories and Tributes

After Bill's passing several fans share their memories of the impact he had on their fannish lives:

  • "This was the time when Bill Hupe's zine-empire still existed (remember his terrific postage calculation? I still use it to calculate US postage!)" [28]
  • "I don't know if any of you knew him, but I just heard that BNF Bill Hupe passed away recently. He'd been involved with active Trek fandom forever it seemed (and SW fandom too, I think, but I'm not sure)...served on many con committees and was responsible for the publishing of many zines. He and his wife lived here in Michigan for a while, my mother was acquainted with Bill's wife as she was a doctor at the hospital where my mom works, and in the early 90s the Hupes were part of the committee that put on one of the best Trek cons I'd ever been to, and both were regular attendees of the Media West Con for years."[29]
  • "I illustrated fanzines for [Bill] from around 1986 to some time in the late nineties when I got a new job and drifted away from fandom for a while. He was a pal, easy to work with, supremely generous. He was the person who got me firmly hooked on Anime. He'd mail me boxes full of vhs tapes of shows like Vampire Princess Miyu, Urusei Yatsura, and my beloved Ranma 1/2 for free in the days before DVD when no one was selling anime and there was no station in the U.S. was broadcasting the stuff. It must be stated: Bill Hupe published some of the worst schlock to ever see the mimeographed page. The nadir for me was the time I, greedy for the reward of another box of Rumiko Takahashi goodness, agreed to do a cover illustration for a novella length 'zine (that Bill published, but did NOT write) in which Picard is inflicted with dementia by some mecha-baddie. There were scenes where Riker changed his captain's adult diaper. Let's move on, shall we? Despite the fact that he published some of the purest of the pure and total crap that made its way through Kinkos in the 1980's, Bill had pretty reliably good taste. His recommendations for things to watch and read (usually not things he himself had published) were almost always excellent. I might have missed Blackadder and Red Dwarf entirely if not for him. And now he's dead. I went on a Google Quest to find him last week. Bill always knew everyone and everything. He was computer savvy back in the days when only the geekiest of the geeks thought it was worthwhile to own one of those fancy TV-typewriters. Bill was a natural to be on the Internet. If I could find him, I thought, I could find links to everyone. Bill was a linker. He hooked folks up with their fannish drug of choice, be that programs about Japanese adventure teams based on characters from esoteric Buddhism or 'zines about Picard in diapers (with a very tasteful cover, I might add.) But now he's dead... Bill had left fandom in a flurry of controversy in the late nineties. (It just sounds too Victorian to say he left around the time of the turn of the century, doesn't it?) It was something over reprinting out of print 'zines. Really he just got too big. The weight of his 'zine empire collapsed in on itself like a dying sun. An editor who worked with him had volunteered to take over the whole thing. This inevitably led to the whimper not bang ending of someone eventually finding the rented storage unit packed to the leaking tin ceiling full of 'zines and manuscripts and art that was being auctioned off by the storage company people for non-payment.....I guess I saw the Hupe Empire at its very height right before The Fall. In 1996, he invited me to visit while I attended my one and only MediaWest con. His house was... I think it may be sadly misleading to think of where he lived as a house. It was a giant dealer's room staging area where people happened to live while they worked on putting together fanzines and duplicating tapes. We collated and bound 'zines while we chatted in the same way another host might have a coke and eat some peanuts with you. It was astonishing. He packed me off with a box of impossible to find British and Japanese cult TV he'd been duplicating in one of his room full of VCRs while we were talking and the manuscript of some completely awful TOS novel he wanted a color cover for by the end of the month. It was a great night. Fannish Baroque. But now he's gone."[30]


  1. From Mysti Frank in Chalk and Cheese #16 (May 1997): "I've... started a zine agenting business called Agent With Style. Since Bill Hupe has left the arena, and left no one to take up the business, I'm hoping to do just a fraction of what he did in getting the zines most fen would never see out and into fandom's eye. I have a long list of zines available — many new, some older and hard to find—for a double-stamped long SASE."
  2. Bill Hupe Obituary, San Gabriel Valley Tribune December 20, 2009, accessed Jan 10, 2010 (now offline)
  3. Bill Hupe's letter to Starfleet Communique #48 (Dec 1992).
  4. from the editorial in Abode of Strife #19 (1993)
  5. from a flyer included with Bill's 1995 catalog
  6. from the December 1996 catalog from New Leaf Publications: available D-zines were Rebel Destinies #2, In Love and War, Rat Patrol Compiled #1 (Combined Talents #1-5 and #6 on two files), The Small Rouge One #3, Classic #1, Second to None, Full Circle, V Compiled, and The Old World Affair
  7. Sandy Hereld's July 15, 1996 post to the Virgule-L mailing list, quoted with permission.
  8. Electronic Flyer from New Leaf Productions mailed to fandom mailing lists in the summer of 1996.
  9. email posted to a private mailing list in March 1997, quoted anonymously with permission. A copy of the flyer is archived here; reference link.
  11. An example was The Bizarro Zine -- from a 1992 Hupe catalog: "Although this is an agent zine, we're now printing copies for Leah Rosenthal, so supply will no longer be a problem."
  12. See The Zine Pirating Message Comes Full Circle.
  13. from the winter 1993 mailer by Bill Hupe
  14. post to the Virgule-L mailing list September 1995, quoted anonymously by Sandy Hereld.
  15. post to the Virgule-L mailing list September 1995, quoted anonymously by Sandy Hereld.
  16. post to the Virgule-L mailing list July 1997, quoted anonymously by Sandy Hereld.
  17. post to the Virgule-L mailing list September 1995, quoted anonymously by Sandy Hereld.
  18. Sandy Hereld's post to the Virgule-L mailing list September 1995, quoted with permission.
  19. post to the Virgule-L mailing list September 1995, quoted anonymously.
  20. post to the Virgule-L mailing list October 1995, quoted anonymously with permission.
  21. from Late for Breakfast #30
  22. from Late for Breakfast #30
  23. Nut Hatch; March 1999 Editorial
  24. comment by Peg Kennedy in the Winter 1994 Hupe catalog
  25. comment by a fan in the March 1994 Hupe catalog
  26. comment by a fan in the March 1994 Hupe catalog
  27. Jean Kluge commented at Dear Reprehensible Zine Publisher, a 2003 post about Agent With Style
  28. from a fan in The K/S Press #21, 1998
  29. Dec 13, 2009 post in Triaxiansilk The Upsetting News Thread.
  30. Bill Hupe and FanLib: Why I'm Here in 1000 words or Less, dated June 8, 2010.