Starlog

From Fanlore
(Redirected from STARLOG)
Jump to: navigation, search
Title: Starlog
Creator: Starlog Group Inc.
Date(s): August 1976-April 2009
Medium: print, now online
Fandom: science fiction, multifandom
Language: English
External Links: online here

Click here for related articles on Fanlore.

Starlog is a multi-fandom, professional magazine with a media science fiction focus.

There is much fannish cross-pollination in its content, not just because of the topics covered, but also due to its sometimes-support of fanworks and the bridging between the pro and fan world regarding articles and commentators.

The entire run of "Starlog" is available online via the Internet Archive here.

About

In 2016, Kelly O'Quinn said:

When we started Starlog in 1976, it was kind of an in-between period. Star Trek was only in reruns and it was before Star Wars, Close Encounters, or any of those things.

The way that Starlog came about is that we used to package magazines for other publishers on whatever subject they wanted to do. A publisher came to us and said, "We want one on Star Trek," which was great. We put together what was essentially the first issue of Starlog, with a complete episode guide and all of that. It was completely on Star Trek. We gave that to the publisher and a few weeks later he comes back and says, "We've discovered that Paramount owns the rights to Star Trek and they won't let us publish this because it would need to be a licensed product and we can't afford to do a magazine just on Star Trek. So we can't pay you and we have to give you back all of these materials."

They did, but it was such good stuff, so I said, "Instead of doing a magazine on just Star Trek, let's do a magazine that I've always wanted to do on science fiction, and we'll just use this material for a few issues. But we'll do it about the whole world of science fiction." That's how Starlog was born.

The first issue sold better than anyone except me expected, so the distributor let us go from quarterly to bimonthly, and then when Star Wars came out and made the cover of Time magazine and became the biggest thing in Hollywood, we went monthly. Suddenly science fiction was the hot item and just as suddenly we were the voice of science fiction. [1]
Starlog was a monthly science-fiction film magazine published by Starlog Group Inc. The magazine was created by publishers Kerry O'Quinn and Norman Jacobs. O'Quinn was the magazine's editor while Jacobs ran the business side of things, dealing with typesetters, engravers and printers. They got their start in publishing creating a soap opera magazine. In the mid-1970s, O'Quinn and high school friend David Houston talked about creating a magazine that would cover science fiction films and television programs.

O'Quinn came up the idea of publishing a one-time only magazine on the Star Trek phenomenon. Houston's editorial assistant Kirsten Russell suggested that they include an episode guide to all three seasons of the show, interviews with the cast and previously unpublished photographs. During this brainstorming session many questions were raised, most notably legal issues. Houston contacted Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry with the intention of interviewing him for the magazine. Once they got his approval, O'Quinn and Jacobs proceeded to put together the magazine but Paramount Studios, who owned Star Trek, wanted a minimum royalty that was greater than their projected net receipts and the project was shelved. O'Quinn realized that they could create a magazine that only featured Star Trek content but without it being the focus and therefore getting around the royalties issue. He also realized that this could be the science fiction magazine he and Houston had talked about. Many titles for it were suggested, including Fantastic Films and Starflight before Starlog was chosen. (Fantastic Films was later used as the title of a competing science fiction magazine published by Blake Publishing.)

To keep costs down, Starlog was initially a quarterly magazine with the first issue being published on August 1976. The issue sold out and this encouraged O'Quinn and Jacobs to publish a magazine every six weeks instead of quarterly. O'Quinn was the magazine's first editor with Houston taking over for a year and then replaced by Howard Zimmerman when Houston was promoted to the "Hollywood Bureau." Zimmerman was eventually succeeded by David McDonnell.

One of the magazine's milestones was its 100th issue, published on November 1985 and featured who they thought were the 100 most important people in science fiction. This included exclusive interviews with John Carpenter, Peter Cushing, George Lucas, Leonard Nimoy, and Gene Roddenberry. The magazine's 200th issue repeated the format of the 100th issue but this time interviewed such notable artists as Arthur C. Clarke, Tim Burton, William Gibson, Gale Anne Hurd, and Terry Gilliam. Starlog was one of the first publications to report on the development of the first Star Wars movie, and it also followed the development of what was to eventually become Star Trek: The Motion Picture. The magazine was devoted to science fiction films, television series, and books. Many fans of this long-running magazine considered its heyday to have been the 1980s with very little substance to the content in later years and many of its long-time contributors having since moved on. But it continued to boast some top-flight genre journalists, including film historians Will Murray, Jean-Marc Lofficier and Tom Weaver. It was one of the longest-running and most popular publications of its type.

It published its 30th Anniversary issue in 2006. On Wednesday, December 5, 2007 at approximately 11 a.m. a warehouse, operated by Kable News, in Oregon, Illinois containing back issues of Starlog and Fangoria burned to the ground. [2]

Fan Comments

In case you haven't seen it yet, there's a new magazine on the market that relates to Star Trek. It's called STARLOG, and it is a professionally produced magazine with something for anyone interested in s-f, comics, fantasy, and especially Star Trek.

It is very media oriented, focusing on TV shows and movies, and for the most part, ignoring books. It does announce some upcoming books, but not much.

However, it is very well done, and it is published by fans and for fans. So far it has been well-worth the $1.50 cover price. DAVID HOUSTON is the editor, and he has done a fine job for the past three issues. Issue 4 should be out around February 15 at most newsstands. [3]

Further Reading

References

  1. from "The Fifty Year Mission: The Complete, Uncensored, Unauthorized Oral History" by Edward Gross and Mark A. Altman, published in 2016 by St. Martin's Press
  2. from the intro at the Internet Archive
  3. from Star Trekkin' #7 (1976)