Dick Wilson

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(September 23, 1920 – March 29, 1987)

Richard (Dick) Wilson, Jr. was a fan, a science fiction writer and a journalist who later became director of the news bureau at Syracuse University. While at Syracuse he helped acquire the papers of many prominent SF writers for its library. These papers included proofs, story fragments, correspondence, art, and other materials, making the collection one of the most important of its kind in the world. Wilson wrote an article about this collection in the May, 1967, issue of Worlds of Tomorrow.

He was born in Huntington Station, Long Island, New York, and attended both Brooklyn College (1935–1936) and the University of Chicago (1947–1948). He was a precocious youth, skipping three grades in elementary school, and graduated from high school at 15. While in high school, he handset the type for his fanzine, The Atom.

As a fan, Wilson was a Futurian in the late 1930s and early 1940s and wrote for their fanzines and for the magazines they edited. His first published SF story, "Murder from Mars," appeared in the April, 1940, issue of Astonishing Stories, edited by Futurian Frederik Pohl. He published the fanzine Aaanthor Argus with Don Wollheim and Cyril Kornbluth. Wilson occasionally used the pennames of Azygous, Edward Halibut and Jay Cross, and he and Cyril Kornbluth used the joint pseudonym of Ivar Towers. He published the fanzines Incredible (1938–39) with W. E. Marconette, Escape (late ’30s), and the Science Fiction News Letter (1937–1939). He was one of the Futurians who were not barred from the First Worldcon by the Exclusion Act.

He served in the United States Army Signal Corps during World War II (1942–1946). After the War he was Chief of Bureau, Transradio Press, Chicago, Washington, D.C., and New York, 1946–1951. He then was a reporter and deputy to the North American editor, Reuters, New York, 1951–1964.

Wilson was married to fellow Futurians Jessica Gould, 1941–1944, and Doris Baumgardt (Leslie Perri), 1950–1967, with whom he had a son, Richard David Wilson. In 1967, he married Frances Keegan Daniels and then immediately took her to a SF convention in New York.

His SF books include The Girls from Planet 5 (novel, 1955), Those Idiots from Earth (short stories, 1957), And Then the Town Took Off (novel, 1960), 30-Day Wonder (novel, 1960), and Time Out for Tomorrow (short stories, 1962). He also wrote plays, one a radio play for X-Minus One in 1955 ("Inside Story").

For an early short biography, see Who's Who in Fandom 1940, page 14.

Awards, Honors and GoHships:

Fanzines and Apazines:

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