div align="center">

High Hallack Library

Andre Norton and John T. Cullen

Also: A. L. Sirois, ComiCon, World's First E-Serial Online, Etc.

OSDF AUTHOR WINS BIG. While the final standings are not in as of this writing, we believe our own A.L. Sirois is the only author to have placed two stories in the Top 25 of Eternity's Best of the Web 1998 fiction contest. Both stories were published in OSDF. At this writing, As Bad As It Gets (OSDF April 1998) placed 16th out of nearly 600 entries, while March 11 1936, 5:30 AM (OSDF December 1998) tied for 3rd place. Eternity expects to publish the Top 10 on the Web and in print later this year. Congratulations, Al! We're proud of you, and proud that OSDF placed so well!

ANDRE NORTON. We received an email from Maciej Zaleski-Ejgierd, an associate of world-famous science fiction and fantasy author Andre Norton. Andre Norton is the only woman in history to have won the SFWA Grand Master Award, the rarest and highest award in speculative fiction, awarded for lifetime excellence and contributions to the field.

Maciej wanted us to announce the High Hallack Genre Writers' Research and Reference Library, sponsored by Ms. Norton, which is a wonderful new research center for genre writers. Located near Nashville, TN, the center includes a 10,000 volume (and growing) library, including many rare volumes. This center (named after a setting in one of Ms. Norton's novels) has its web site at High Hallack, and other information is available for Andre Norton. Thanks, Maciej!

High Hallack Update 2022

Touching Moments in an Author's Life. Precious moments in my life included Ray Bradbury's 2008 personal rave note "John, read/loved your 'Clock. Bravo!" for my dark holiday fantasy novel *The Christmas Clock,* which actually started out as my homage to Charles Dickens' *A Christmas Carol.* Ray's comments, and my letter to him, are documented in at least one edition of *The Christmas Clock.* Another touching moment was my correspondence with Andre Norton in 1999 or so, during which she accepted my SF novel *Pioneers* (later titled *Blue Princess: The Storybook Festival* as an "unusual" and "innovative" new book for High Hallack Library.

My Andre Norton email contact came about through correspondence with Maciej. He had contacted me at *The Haunted Village SFFH* and *Deep Outside SFFH* to exchange links. He said that Andre Norton was anxious because her books seemed to be going out of print and she felt 'forgotten.' That's the exact word he used. Andre Norton had been one of the top heroes of my reading life as a young (grammar school) adolescent in grades 6-8. Other major heroes included Ray Bradbury, plus all the great SF authors I could find at the New Haven CT Public Library. As a youth, I sent out two fan letters because I so adored those authors: Ray Bradbury and Andre Norton. Their letters in reply are long lost as paper, but endure in my memory. All his life, Ray urged the myriad struggling young author fans who wrote to him, saying they should write a short story per week among other advise. Andre Norton sent me a letter suggesting, among other things, that authors need not look to their imaginations to create alien life; they need only look in our earth's oceans and forests to find the astounding variety of life that will thrive in their SFFH stories.

When Maciej informed me that Andre Norton was 'worried' about her legacy, I offered to publish her books through Clocktower Books. It may sound preposterous, but I was sincerely trying to be helpful to a literary hero. Her novels *Galactic Derelict* and *Starman's Son* were among the greatest, blazing inspirations of my young writing life; not to mention Ray Bradbury's *Dandelion Wine* and other books. Andre Norton might have chuckled to herself, but she assured me she had just gotten a big new contract from a New York City house and there was nothing to worry about. She did, finally, accept *Pioneers* (my sf novel, today availabe as *Blue Princess: Storybook Planet*) for the High Hallack Library. It was one of those unforgettable moments in life.

ALTA VISTA QUICKIES CONTEST. The Wild Wild Web, the CBS-syndicated TV show about entertainment and pop culture on the Web, wants your entry for the 1st annual Quickie Awards. The winners will receive fantastic prizes, and winning entries will be shown during a special episode of the TV show in May. Animation, live action or interactive—if you have a multimedia moving work of art on the Web, it's eligible for the Quickies. We accept entries in any of the following formats: QuickTime, AVI, MOV, MPG, Shockwave and Flash. All you need do is send us the URL of the page that contains your work. (Do not send us the files themselves.)

Among the prizes are an Olympus D-400Z digital camera, sound-editing software from Sonic Foundry and a package of multimedia development software from Macromedia, including the latest versions of Director, Flash, Freehand, Generator and Dreamweaver. All entries must be received by April 14, 1999. This contest is open to citizens of the United States and Canada. For more information and contest rules, point your browser to or email Susan Kaup,

E-SERIAL NOVELS—Douglas Clegg announces his e-serial novel available—he says for free. He plans to email weekly installments of his novel "Naomi" for free to anyone who will sign up at *onelist dot dom*. The first installment will be mailed out May 1, 1998.

He's perhaps correct in saying it's the first "eserial," in so far as it's distributed by mail. In terms of serials on the Web, actually, Clocktower Fiction was undoubtedly the first site to publish free serial novels of any sort, and of top genre quality. Remember, this is essentially before the arrival of mass e-commerce. John Argo's free serial novels "Neon Blue" (300 pages) and "Heartbreaker" (500 pages) went on line in 1996. "Pioneers" went on line in 1997 (200 pages).

These novels continue to be read by thousands of readers around the world—in Mongolia, Brazil, China, Russia, and over 50 other countries. Just this morning we uploaded copies to Vietnam, India, Moscow, and locations around the U.S. and Canada. When the last chapters had been posted in 1997, Clocktower Fiction made them fully available, as they are today, along with various short stories. We stopped serializing when we turned instead, in April 1998, to creating one of the first professional Web-based genre fiction magazines, Outside: Speculative & Dark Fiction, where we publish some of the finest authors around. We pay our authors a professional wage, but the fiction is free to readers around the world.

Update 2022 During Much-Needed Site Renovation

World's First E-Serial Online

Actually:… NOTE 2022 JTC: In reality, the world's first serialized online novel (e-book) was John Argo's *Neon Blue* (or: Girl Unlocked) released in weekly chapter installements starting April 1996 on C&C Publishers' pioneering, revolutionary new mystery/suspense publishing website Neon Blue Fiction. See the Clocktower Books Museum for details on our numerous "FIRSTs" achieved in Web and digital publishing.

C&C also launched its epic, pioneering The Haunted Village SFFH fiction site in July 1996. That is to take nothing away from Andy McCann's pioneering and wonderful Planet Magazine, which in its one 1998 issue published the SF short story *Control Game* by John Argo. Wikipedia has a page for Planet Magazine. Planet Magazine did not pay SFWA rates to its authors, contrary to the soon-to-follow launch of SFWA-grade professional magazine Deep Outside SFFH in April 1998.

Here is the official Encyclopedia of Science Fiction entry for Far Sector/Deep Outside SFFH by Mike Ashley, documenting early information about our online activities. Note that the Wayback Machine did not start trawling for Internet activity until 1998, so our earlier activities are not recorded there. We have endeavored as best possible to keep the historical record straight, primarily through our Clocktower Books Museum. Note, for example, that Brian Callahan (one of the *C*s in C&C) registered the domain name clocktowerfiction dot com in December 1996, and soon incorporated the Neon Blue Fiction and The Haunted Village SFFH online publishing sites under the umbrella of Clocktower Fiction. The name Clocktower comes from a John Argo novel titled *Streamliners,* an alternate worlds/timeslip adventure into Art Deco America, in which the fictional Raritania, not far from the real New York City of the early 20th Century, was 'a city of clocktowers.' The domain clocktower fiction dot com fell into the hands of squatters and remains in their evil, stinking claws to this day (after they failed to extort thousands of dollars for its return, so this is revenge; they appear to be money launderers for the illegal, murderous, criminal, global drug trade).

World's First E-Serials. As noted, the world's first e-serial (HTML novel) was *Neon Blue* by John Argo (John T. Cullen writing as John Argo), starting April 1996 at Neon Blue Fiction (website hosted at now-defunct San Diego ISP electriciti dot com on India Street, San Diego. We followed in July 1996 with the launch of the second HTML, *Heartbreaker* (retitled *This Shoal of Space* in 1998) on our SFFH website The Haunted Village, also hosted by electriciti. Following those launches, we serialized John Argo's *Pioneers* (SF Novel, later *Blue Princess*) at The Haunted Village, and *CON2: The Generals of October* (political thriller by John T. Cullen) at Neon Blue Fiction. Other novels and short stories followed under the Clocktower Fiction umbrella site, which was reborn as Clocktower Books around 2001 to accommodate nonfiction and poetry as well as fiction.

As noted in our Museum, our claim to history about the novel *Neon Blue, or: Girl, Unlocked* is that was/is history's first HTML novel as we call it. Criteria are: (1) proprietary, not public domain, so flush Project Gutenberg from the conversation; (2) published online, not on portable media like tape, CD, floppies, and the like as a few early authors did; (3) published entire, not in teasers or sample chapters; (4) published entirely in HTML format online. Additional innovations included: (5) our many readers around the world, whose breathless cries for info came in emails that we still have on file, often wrote to say they could not wait to read the ending and see what happens; so Brian Callahan made available a free, full TXT version online to be downloaded; (6) starting April 1996 with Neon Blue (the world's first HTML novel), John T. Cullen released the next chapter every Sunday afternoon from his home in San Diego, CA. On that last point, we had readers around the world on every continent. Few persons had personal computers at home yet, so they (for example a certain charming lady in Johannesburg, South Africa) would show up for work on Monday morning, coffee in hand, and sneak a little reading time with her croissant before starting the week's work. That was true across the globe including New Zealand, Australia, USA, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Germany, U.K., France, Spain, Italy, Hungary, and even Hong Kong China. That was before the advent of e-commerce, so as Karen Wiesner relates about us in her famous handbook on Web Publishing, we did it mainly for fun and publicity. As the moment waned a bit after 2000, we were able to catch another wave of exhilarating popularity on our special pages at Fictionwise (gone after 2012). Again, more info at the Clocktower Books Museum pages. [JTC 2022 Reno/Update]

COMIC-CON INTERNATIONAL - San Diego, August 1999. We've received Update Number One informing us that this is C-CI's 30th year and counting. They cover more than comics—some of the hippest movers and shakers from the world of movies and TV attend and sign autographs, including Star Wars' Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca) and John de Lancie, Star Trek's Q.

You can attend workshops on animation design and writing. Watch the pros demo their skills—like Neil Gaiman (Sandman), Jill Thompson (Scary Godmother), Jerry Robinson (DC/Batman), and others. Meet actor Bill Mumy (the kid in the original Lost In Space TV series—most recently credited in Babylon 5), novelist Max Allan Collins (Ms. Tree and 1998 Paradox graphic novel Road to Perdition), and more.

Check Comic-Con International's progress on their web site at

REDESIGN. I want to take one more opportunity to congratulate my fellow publisher, Brian Callahan, on his outstanding redesign of Outside: Speculative & Dark Fiction (OSDF). (1998-1999)

The changes are not only cosmetic, but functional. Unlike print magazines, which are static one-time shots and tend to disappear within a few weeks, Web publications can maintain large archives of previously published stories. It's as if a print magazine came out each month with new work, plus everything they published before—they'd be the size of a phone book!

While we now publish a new issue monthly, we're using a Webcentric layout scheme developed by Brian Callahan to take advantage of our differences from print magazines. By being our readers, you are taking part in an exciting new pioneering work that will eventually result in universal acceptance and usage of the Internet as a publishing medium—probably in a year or two, when everyone owns an inexpensive e-reader to download novels, short stories, and nonfiction. I predict magazines, newspapers, and advertisers will hand the readers out for free.

RECEIVED: Advance copy of "Choice of Evil" by Andrew Vachss, the 11th Burke novel, to be published by Alfred A. Knopf (NY) in May 1999.


Website Copyright John T. Cullen as indicated on this label. Editorial content copyright John Kenneth Muir as indicated above