The facts are these. Hoover is not telling the truth.

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Open Letter
Title: The facts are these. Hoover is not telling the truth. (The letter does not have an official title. The title used here on Fanlore is two lines from the letter itself.)
From: Mandi Schultz
Addressed To: fans
Date(s): printed in November 1976
Medium: print
Fandom: Star Trek: TOS, science fiction
External Links:
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The facts are these. Hoover is not telling the truth. is a 1976 open letter by Mandi Schultz.

The topic of the letter was a fan named [Ingrid C] and her dealings with a man who scammed her, preying upon her intense desire to be a pro writer. The man, Hoover, used his supposed connections with Isaac Asimov, to make promises he did not keep.

The letter was also touted as an example of the good work that the WSA Program did in protecting fans' interest, and in that respect, was also a bit of a sales pitch.

The letter was printed in Spectrum #29 (December 1976) and Warped Space #21 in November 1976 (and perhaps other places?).

Lori Chapek-Carleton introduced this open letter: "I mentioned the WSA Program in the Editorial of WARPED SPACE 18 explaining as best I could the Program's function in fandom and how the Program works. I recently received the following announcement from Mandi Schultz and wish to share it with you now ... "

Chapek-Carleton ends the letter with the remarks: "And there you. have it. To become a member of the Program, dues are $5.00, $2.00 annually thereafter, for which you receive an ID card, your WSA number and sheet of logos, and the monthly newsletter. As a member you may consult the Program at any time for help. The Program will book you, defend you, support you, and render any reasonable service you need or request. For further information contact: Ron J. Frantz, Acting Administrator -- Mike Robertson, Publishers' Alliance -- Harry Hopkins, Registrar for WSA applications -- Art Miller, Fan Club Alliance."

The Letter by Mandi Schultz

The letter is signed: Mrs. Mandi Schultz, Assistant to the Acting Administrator WSA Program - Star Trek Division.

In April of this year, [Ingrid C] began a correspondence with Jim Hoover (a.k.a. Theodore James Hoover). The initial reasons don't matter, really—consider all the reasons Trekkers write to other Trekkers. Ingrid was looking for another friend. What Mr. Hoover was looking for remains to be seen. Very early on in their correspondence, he read some of her fanfic and asked if he could show it to some friends. Later he announced that one of them was Isaac Asimov. (Over this point there are a number of inconsistencies—he vacillates between being a part-time friend, a good friend, an associate —take your pick.) He also claims to have worked with Asimov on tv scripts. He told Ingrid that he could pull strings with Asimov, saying that in the publishing world it's not what you know but who you know, and get her story into an anthology of new writers that I.A. is planning for sometime next year. Obviously, since Ingrid had expressed the great desire to become a published writer, she was very interested in this, and agreeable to whatever Hoover suggested, his letters carried on at great length about Asimov, presumably to bolster his claim to knowing him, detailing bits of a neurotic personality, eccentric behavior, peculiar working habits, and a total irreverence toward all manner of formalities and proprieties.

During the course of the correspondence, Ingrid began to notice an increasing number of inconsistencies in the various facts Hoover conveyed—about himself, about the publishing business, about copyrighting (these last two one would think he would be familiar with since he also claims to be a former tv director, script writer, and other things related to both fields) and especially about Asimov. There were a great deal of apparently solid and also ambiguous plans made for getting together at cons, sharing rooms with Ingrid (Mrs. Hoover would accompany him, of course) and a friend, meeting with Asimov, etc. One con was cancelled. Other meetings, promised phone calls from Asimov, etc., never materialized. The delays were always blamed on Asimov and his supposed idiosyncrasies. In the meantime. Hoover was also asking Ingrid for other stories of some peculiar natures, claiming Asimov wanted them as "test" stories—again, blaming the peculiarities on Asimov.

Finally, all of this came to a head when Ingrid cornered him with the inconsistencies and asked for some kind, any kind of reassurance that there was a project of some kind in the works—for Indeed Hoover had guaranteed her at one point that; her work would be in this anthology. His reaction to her petition was to carry on as though he had been wounded to the marrow, berating her for having no faith in him, telling her how she would never get anywhere without "connect ions," calling her unreliable, etc. He ended the correspondence. Ingrid tried to phone him to straighten things out and he refused to speak with her, saying he didn't even know her.

Then the peculiar things began. Ingrid started to receive hate mail, both signed and anonymous, from people she knew as well as people she didn't know, taking her to task for what she did to Hoover. As she hadn't told them about it, there was only one person who could have. As a result, she has met with a great deal of adversity in fandom, her so-called friends have turned their backs on her, and her reputation has been damaged.

When she approached me for help, I have to admit the case sounded so bizarre, I took it because my curiosity was over whelming. Unraveling it has been even more intriguing. I have seen all of Hoover's letters to her—an amazing amount of verbiage poured out to someone who he claims he doesn't know. I have seen all the statements he made about Asimov. I have seen some of the mail Ingrid has been receiving from other sources.

Obviously there was only one way to get the truth and that was to ask Asimov. I contacted him with the help of Howard DeVore, Dean McLaughlin, and my husband, sent him xeroxes of all of Hoover's letters that mentioned him, told him the story, and asked for a reply, since only he could settle this. I spoke with him on the telephone on Nov. 6, 1976, and there is also a document from him with the facts on paper with his signature.

The facts are these. Hoover is not telling the truth. He is not a friend, buddy, business associate, co-author, or anything else of Asimov. He has never written a script with Asimov. He has never worked as a "middle man" for Asimov in any venture. Although it is entirely possible that he may have shaken his hand at a con or gotten an autograph, there is no relationship whatever. Asimov never heard of him. ^Everything Hoover said to Ingrid about the anthology and any business arrangements he could make were lies. Whatever else Hoover may be, and at this point there may also be no truth in what he says about his background, since one would espect a professional person of such a background as he claims to be above playing cruel childish games such as this, he is not in any way connected with Asimov. The things he said about Asimov, particularly about his character and personality, are not true—I have that from people who do know Asimov and work with him. In truth, Asimov has been as much a victim of this as Ingrid has been. Hoover has evidently made a great show of how wounded he has been by Ingrid, but her only crime was in getting suspicious. I think the victims in this farce are perfectly obvious.

One can only wonder what Hoover hoped to gain by all this—wonder and perhaps shudder a little. Surely an intelligent person would realize that eventually someone could and would check out the facts and learn the truth. While I have a great deal of sympathy for whatever sort of problem, this man has that makes him do things like this, the fact remains that his problem is not his own when it compels him to victimize others—and to use the name of a personality well-known in our circles to help him perpetrate his fraud and slander. There is no excuse for this—and there is no place for this in fandom.

So if you have already encountered [Ingrid C], or do so at some future date, do not judge her by what Jim Hoover may have told you. For that matter, don't judge Asimov by what he says either. The person you must think about and be wary of is Hoover himself, and he has done it to himself.

Anyone wishing further details or confirmation of any of this may check with me or with [Ingrid C] personally. Whether or not she will be taking legal action for libel is undetermined at this time.

Fan Comments

There are some people who are using the ST movement as a vehicle for deeply-ingrained, potentially pathological hostilities. Jim Hoover's treatment of [Ingrid C], for example. Just as ST fandom is giving people the chance to cultivate their underlying good qualities (friendship, creativity, communication), it is also giving them the chance to cultivate the bad shit as well. This is becoming a frequent topic of conversation among fen who've been around for a while. ST fandom is no longer Camelot, folks. This is a condition we all should be aware of—and watchful for. It's just like day-to-day living in the big city. If you live there, you learn how to tell the good from the bad. It's sad to liken that to fendom, but that's unfortunately what we're coming to. [1]


  1. ^ comment by Paula M. Block in Warped Space #23 (1977)