Sharon Emily

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Fan
Name: Sharon Emily
Alias(es):
Type: fanzine writer & editor
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URL: Online version of Showcase Presents
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Sharon Emily was a fanwriter who She wrote, edited, and published fanzines in the 1970s and 1980s. She passed away on July 31 2017.[1]

"Showcase"

Showcase is one of Sharon's zines. It is a "Christian Inspirational Romance set in the Star Trek: The Orginal Series Universe."

"At the time she wrote, edited, and published Star Trek Showcase, she was a Parson's wife and printed, stored and shipped the mimeo fanzines in the church basement." [2] She also edited Showcase Presents.

From the online introduction of "Showcase":
This long Star Trek Romance episodic novel was originally published in the 1970's before the popular category publishers had begun to publish Science Fiction/Futuristic Romances -- or supernatural Romance -- or vampire Romance, and even before the category of Inspirational Romance had burgeoned into a dominant player in the Romance field.

Perhaps Barbara Sharon Emily did not invent the genre of Futuristic Romance, but she was surely one of the very first to mix such wildly separate genres as Science Fiction, Romance, and Christian Inspirational writing. And she became an immensely popular writer with this series, drawing some of the best writers in the Star Trek fanzine world into writing in her series, just as Kraith did.

This Star Trek fanzine novel series was widely read before the advent of the "/" genres, and contains no "/" elements whatsoever. Literary researchers may find that this one fanzine provided the impetus for many young women writers to explore mixing genres and especially the straight futuristic romance.

It was and still is a landmark addition to the literature of science fiction and could legitimately be termed Intimate Adventure. In Jacqueline Lichtenberg's opinion, the quality of the writing here is top notch professional, easily publishable as Mass Market -- except for the mixing of genres which is disallowed in the Star Trek mass market paperback. And like all fanfic, this violates the aired-universe rules to make an even more interesting story than we saw on the air. [3]

"The Misfit"

Sharon is well-known for writing "The Misfit (A Star Trek Romance)," published in Showcase #1. In the story, an Earth woman, Lorna Mitchell, marries Sarek after the death of Amanda. Some fans consider this story a Mary Sue. Miss Emily herself said that the story was based on Stay by Norma Smith and that while she looked into her own mind and heart for certain reactions (as all writers do) the character is a composite that includes people she observed in connection with her husband's job.

"Proof Positive"

In 1975, Showcase #2 published another story, "Proof Positive," written by Sharon. The premise of the story is that Spock goes back in time to meet Jesus.

This story was parodied in Paula Smith's, "100 Proof Positive," (which appeared in both Menagerie #6 and Warped Space #13.) In Paula Smith's story, Spock goes to the North Pole to meet Santa Claus. Boldly Writing states that "Paula's satire was funny and well-received by many fans."

Shortly after "100 Proof Positive" was published, Sharon temporarily gafiated. Boldly Writing states that "Sharon later commented that she found the satire flattering," and in a letter to Scuttlebutt, she assured fans that it wasn't this parody that made her pull back from fandom:

For some reason, there are people who seem to think that it was Paula Smith and her parody of 'Proof Positive' that influenced me to retreat. NOT SO!! As a matter of fact, Paula and Sharon Ferraro have both expended much time, effort, phone bills, and postage seek to get get me to change my mind about retreating. Let it go on record here that Paula sent a copy of her parody to me BEFORE she sent it for consideration by any editor, promising me that she wouldn't release it if I felt it would harm me in any way. Actually, to have one's work parodied is one of the finest compliments a writer can receive... Paula and Sharon are individuals that I'm honored to call Star Trek fandom friends, and I hope this statement will end the rumors. [4]

"The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face"

That same year, Sharon wrote The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face which drew on ideas from two films: The Day the Earth Stood Still (a 1951 science fiction movie), and Stranger from Venus (a 1954 British made-for-TV movie). Boldly Writing comments on the significance of the story's publication: "Apparently there was enough demand for the single tale for Sharon to issue this long story separately.....This, along with Lori's printing a non-Trek story in her otherwise all-Trek fanzine Warped Space, showed that Star Trek fans were beginning to think that if they could write stories based on one television show, they could write stories about other television series or movies as well. This trend made large in roads among formerly all-Star Trek publications in 1977."

Later Zine Publishing

In 1976, Sharon Emily wrote a guest column in Spectrum addressing over-critical fanzine reviews.

While many of her zines were popular, she often struggled with the details of publication and fanzine distribution.

In 1978, she sent a personal statement to Warped Space #39 explaining why so many fanzine orders were missing.

In 1981, she sent a personal statement to Universal Translator #7 concerning the poor sales of her zine Showcase Presents the Alternate Universes of Star Wars.

In 1982, she proposed a fifth issue of Showcase in Datazine #16. In that same issue of Datazine, she wrote a unique personal statement and announced that she was too ill to continue fan activity.

Sharon returned to fandom in 1987 in a letter to Interstat #126 before leaving it again.

References

  1. Barbara Marsh Obituary - Indianapolis, IN, Archived version
  2. Showcase online
  3. from simegen.com, accessed April 1, 2014
  4. Sharon Emily's personal statement to Scuttlebutt in 1977