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Feedback — The Doctor and I

the original article

Scott Sherritt, country Victoria fan, wrote in to say:

I read with some interest your fascinating article ‘The Doctor and I’.

Whilst as far as I know you and I have never met, spoken or corresponded, there are some creepy similarities in our Who experiences:

  1. My first contact with fandom was the first Whovention in Sydney in January 1990.
  2. The first (and one of only about three) Victorian meetings I ever attended was upstairs in that freezing leisure centre in Moonee Ponds in February 1990.
  3. I was also at and have very fond memories of the Enlightenment event in St Kilda in January 1991. In particular, there were a lot of people wandering around talking about this Saddam Hussein guy who was getting some attention in the news at the time!
  4. Oh, and then there is Nemesis, that one issue only pro-zine about the Davison era. It contains in its centre pages an appallingly poor piece of fiction by yours truly, written in one night at the behest of editor Luke Filmer. I will keep apologising for that one until my dying day.

My interaction with Victorian fandom ended shortly thereafter (mostly due to living in the country, having a full time job and just not being able to get to meetings) but I regard some of the people I met in the DWCV as amongst the kindest and most genuine I have ever known.

Anyway, your memoir was very interesting and I would just like to thank you for it (wipes tear from eye) and the other articles on your site.

Cheers Scott!

Martin Dunne then bobbed in to provide some more info on the South Australian Doctor Who Fan Club/Science Fiction South Australia.

Dear David,

"Personally, even now, I find it hard to believe you will keep or gain subscribers based on a half-and-half effort. Go with what makes you unique, and concentrate on making it the best there is. In early 2001 the South Australian Doctor Who Fan Club jumped on the "telefantasy" bandwagon to the gross detriment of Who content (including cutting their Chameleon Factor fanzine), and I am afraid they will sink based on that decision."

I can give you an insiders insight into this. After nearly twenty years of occasional attendance, I finally joined the club in June/July 2000, and was alarmed to find the committee already determined to affect this change. They believed the change would serve the club well, but as it is there isn’t much change — prior we would get together once a month and likely not watch some videos which weren’t Who, now we get together once a month and not watch the videos which still aren’t Who. The most obvious change is the replacement of the pro-Who fanzine Chameleon Factor with the pro-any Science Fiction fanzine SFSA Magazine. For me the biggest issue of all was that they were flirting with the name ‘Science Fiction and Fantasy South Australia’ — as a fan of SF as opposed to bastard Fantasy using SF props, this wouldn’t do. I lobbied for ‘Science Fiction South Australia’ and that is the proposed change of name put forward on the 4th of November 2000 (if I recall correctly), effective from that date. The vote was eight to four in favour; as there was five people serving on the committee at the time this shows how incestuous democracy is at limited voting levels like this.

As a corollary to this I must point out that SADWFC is an incorporated club with a legally enforceable constitution. Changing the constitution and hence the club would have needed both a vote and a lodgement fee. We took the radical step of ignoring this entirely! I received legal advice that we could simply re-badge the club without changing the constitution, whereas if we were a for profit registered company this would have been illegal. So, to give it its full trading name it is now ‘SADWFC Inc. trading as SFSA’. It is still legally SADWFC, and must observe the same procedures and aims that SADWFC had for two decades. This includes the promotion of Who, and discludes the prevention of any member’s enjoyment of the show.

Positive changes not directly involved with the change are the addition of a second monthly meeting of an informal nature, and new committee member and techie Tim Aslat taking over as Web Master. Things are on the up.

Check out my links to this club and its Australian peers.

End of Feedback Item

Here’s the list of the feedback items available here:
How I Killed a Fanzine (or, What’s an EFG?)
The Doctor and I (a fan’s biography)
Doctor Who in America
Funny Search Engines
→ Or just head back to the Feedback Index

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This page last updated by David J Richardson on Sun, 27 Apr 2003.