It's the mid sixties and the Beatles craze is full on
with British pop music creating a look back culture that exists to this
But what am I and my friends doing at this time? We're
into American Comic books Batman, Superman, etc. -- all conveniently available
at a local news agent around the corner from where we lived in Reading,
England -- comics used as ballast for ships coming from to US to the UK.
This was to be my first introduction to Fantasy and Scf-Fi that lasts to
I really got into the comic book art work, so many different
styles and the overall excitement of the stores and characters provided
every month were totally compelling to me as a young boy.
Dragon books publish a young readers version of a number
of Edgar Rice Burroughs novels of Tarzan -- the ape man that grows up with
apes, but who eventually falls for a girl called Jane. He has many adventures
in strange lands with cliff hanger dangers, but it seems Burroughs also
had another colorful creation: John Carter, a character transported to
Mars. This was all high adventure with no limits to the imagination.
After this I started getting all the Burroughs books I
could get my hands on: At the Earths Core, Land that Time Forgot, Carson
of Venus to name but a few.
I starting sending my art efforts to ERB-dom in the early
'70s and was delighted to see them in print.
At the age of 19 I spent a magical two-week holiday in
Hollywood, which gave me the opportunity to visit Danton Burroughs at Edgar
Rice Burroughs, Inc.
After a Greyhound bus ride to Tarzana a local pointed
out the property. It was just a few yards from the bus stop and coming
up to the house I noticed the tree that marks the spot that Edgar Rice
Burroughs was laid to rest.
Danton showed me around the archives of Burroughs
Inc and let me take pictures and displayed artwork of several artists that
contributed to bringing the stories to life over the decades. He also gave
me a chance to have a telephone conversation with artist Russ Manning.
Overall, an amazing experience never to be forgotten.
I contributed to a Bristol base Star Trek fanzine at
this time. I did not have an outlet for my Burroughs work.
But with the advent of the Internet I came across ERBzine
in 2005 and was impressed by the content of the web site as it gives insight
to all things Burroughs, time to get my Burroughs fix enabled again so
I have been contributing to the web site since I first came across it.