Blake Bash

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Related terms: Southern California Slashbashers
See also: Slashbash
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The Blake Bash were rotating Blake's 7 fandom house parties that took place in Southern California in the late 1980s. Since Los Angeles is geographically spread out, with guests having to drive hours each way, fans would rotate the monthly parties throughout Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Orange Counties. As The Professionals fandom became more popular in the early 1990s, the group, numbering around 50 fans, decided to alternate the parties between the two fandoms rather than splitting. And, as more and more fandoms were added to the community, the name changed to the more generic "Southern California Slashbashers". Two popular events shared by the entire community were the Escapade slash convention held in Santa Barbara and Lily Fulford's Guy Fawkes party in Long Beach.

As of 2014, the group still meets today, almost 20 years after it began and numbers around 20 fans. However, as the group has aged and the Internet has made fandom more visible and diverse, access to the group has become restricted. New members must be sponsored by an existing member and carefully screened for compatibility in both fandoms and philosophy. The Yahoo Group mailing list is set to private and cannot be found by searching. In 2014, local fans set up a more open and accessible Los Angeles Slash Fandom group for meetups for slash fans in the LA area.

In her February 2012 interview during the Escapade Oral History Project, long time member Kathy S. said:

It is about fandom, but it is more about friendships that you make in fandom and that you keep forever. Yes the common thread is fandom and usually slash fandom, but not always slash..the more important thing is that you're a fan... a willingness to share our passions....we share life, the good times, the bad times and we are there for one another...we're a support group and a family. And I think that is what fandom in general is an experience that I would never ever give up. It has enriched my life. It has give me an appreciation for the world and a wider vision. And that is the true value of fandom. It makes you look at yourself and realize what is really important and to be able to share on many many levels. And that is what fandom is....and what Southern California fandom is.... ...the Southern California group is still going strong. We still meet every month, the core group now is — we’re down to about fifteen or eighteen, still sharing, still talking about fandom. When we get together, we talk about fandom, but we talk about other things, things that interest us. One of the women is very much into costuming, so she will bring examples of her current costuming and we share. We share life and I think that’s what’s really important about our group: we share life, we share our passions, we share the good times, we share the bad times, but we’re there for one another. We’re a support group, we’re family. I’m probably closer to people in fandom than I am with some of my own family, and I think that is what fandom is, not just the Southern California group, but fandom in general. I’ve made lifelong friends on three continents, and it’s an experience that I would never, ever give up, because it has enriched my life. It has given me an appreciation for the world, the wider vision of the world, and I think that, more than anything, is the true value of fandom. And it makes you look at yourself; it makes you realize what is truly, truly important, and to be able to share on many, many levels. So that is what fandom is and what the Southern California fandom is. [1]

Morgan Dawn remembers:

I was relocated to the Southern California area in the mid 1990s having to leave my family behind. I knew literally no one in the area. But every month I could drive - sometimes two hour each way - to meet with fellow fans. It was a lifeline for me and I was impressed how the group managed to navigate tensions and disagreements without splintering or blowing up. [2]

In 2020, the group still meets informally, having shifted to Zoom meetings to deal with the pandemic. In August 2020, several reminisced about the first bashes:

[Kathy S.]: "I .... remember sitting in [Lee V.'s] living room around a large square coffee table. I don’t remember where the food was set up. It seems like after about a year, Lee quit hosting the parties and they moved almost exclusively to Lily’s. Then Meg starting hosting a few a year and I started hosting a few sometime in the mid-90’s. I had tracked Lee down through the LOCs in a Blake’s 7 zine and she told me about the bashes. The first bash I went to was in either late 1988 or early 1989 and was at Lily’s. The rest, as they say, was history.[3]

[Kathy R.]]In 1981, when I was living in San Jose, CA, I began publishing the K/S fanzine T’hy’la, and several people in the Bay Area ordered copies. We began corresponding and calling and then started having fan parties. Noel already had a circle of fannish friends, as did a couple of other people, and we started having weekend-long slash parties with as many as 25 people attending. Basically, mini-cons. People would bring their sleeping bags, food, etc. Some people, particularly if they lived further away, such as a couple of fans from Sacramento, would come on Friday and leave on Sunday, and some people would come just for Saturday. We occasionally had some very out-of-town visitors – among them, fans from New Jersey and Texas. We held them at five or six locations – Noel in San Francisco, Maureen in Santa Rosa, Georgia in San Rafael, Ruth in San Francisco, and my place in Santa Clara are the ones I can think of now. Pat Diggs was part of the group and had connections to SoCal fans, and IIRC, she was the one who told me about the Blake’s Bashes that Lily Fulford, among others, was hosting. I moved to Los Angeles County in 1987 and immediately began going to the Bashes. I mentioned on today’s Zoom Bash how I met Denetia by chance when I dropped by her copy store to have some Trek fanfic copied to send to artists for publication in my zine. In 1989, Lily very kindly came by my house when I was laid up after a car accident with about a three foot high stack of Pros circuit stories. I read my way through that stack and then borrowed a lot more from her once I was out and about again.[4]


  1. ^ Media Fandom Oral History Project Interview with Kathy S
  2. ^ personal recollections of Morgan Dawn
  3. ^ Kathy S. August 22, 2020 post to the Slashbash mailing, quoted with permission.
  4. ^ Kathy R. August 22, 2020 post to the Slashbash mailing, quoted with permission.