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New Worlds

The history of New Worlds is extremely complex, and begins in 1936 with the creation, by Maurice K. Hansen, of a fanzine called Novae Terrae (Latin for New Worlds). After 29 issues, Hanson tired of the workload involved, and handed it over to John Carnell, who renamed the fanzine New Worlds, and restarted the numbering, but the magazine only existed for 4 issues, due to the outbreak of war in 1939. The main sequence started in 1946, still under the editorship of John Carnell, settling down to a monthly schedule in 1954 which continued, in digest format until mid-1964.

During this period there were two interesting variant issues, local distribution of Canadian and New Zealand editions, and, in 1960, there was even a short-lived, reprint, US version of the magazine.

When Carnell decided, in 1963, to close the magazine, Michael Moorcock wrote an impassioned letter of comment arguing for its continuance. Partly as a result of this, when a new publisher (Roberts & Vinter) was found for the magazine, Carnell recommended Moorcock as the new editor, and he duly took over in May 1964, with the magazine shifting to a paperback format. This period lasted a mere three years, initially with a bi-monthly schedule and then the standard monthly schedule, before the publisher went into receivership.

However, it had forged a reputation for itself in this period and, as a result of Brian Aldiss contacting the Arts Council on its behalf, it received a grant that allowed it, in 1967 after a brief hiatus, to continue in the large, glossy, format in which it became most famous/notorious. It struggled on in this format for a mere four years, with a variety of publishers and editors, until finally winding down (in that format) with a subscription-only issue (#201) in 1971.

Meanwhile, Moorcock had been investigating other avenues for New Worlds and 1971 also saw the launch of a quarterly paperback anthology series called New Worlds Quarterly. The schedule proved too ambitious, however, and the name reverted to New Worlds with the sixth issue, with the series as a whole folding after the tenth issue in 1976. Confusingly a series of six issues was also published by a different publisher in the US, with the first 4 US issues identical to the UK ones, the fifth US issue being a reprint of the sixth UK issue, and the sixth US issue a reprint of the seventh UK issue with a number of changes! Although this series did not officially continue the numbering of issues from the previous series, future series have been numbered as if they did, so issue numbers have been assigned as appropriate.

Two years later, the magazine saw a brief re-appearance as a semi-prozine, although this only lasted five issues from 1978 to 1979. There was then a hiatus of 12 years until the magazine reappeared in 1991 as an annual trade paperback, which lasted for four issues, and two separate one-off issues in 1996 and 1997. Although nothing has been heard of the magazine since, there is little doubt it will reappear before long in yet some other format.

1939    
v1 #1, Mar

v1 #2, Apr

v1 #3, May
   
v1 #4, Aug
       
1946            
v1 #1
(Jul)
   
v1 #2
(Oct)
   
1947                  
v1 #3
(Oct)
   
1948                        
1949
v2 #4

v2 #5
                   
1950
v2 #6
Spring

v3 #7
Summer
 
v3 #8
Winter
1951
v3 #9
Spring

v4 #10
Summer

v4 #11
Fall

v4 #12
Winter
1952
v5 #13
Jan
 
v5 #14
Mar
 
v5 #15
May
 
v6 #16
Jul
 
v6 #17
Sep
 
v6 #18
Nov
 
1953
v7 #19
Jan
 
v7 #20
Mar
   
v7 #21
Jun
           
1954      
v8 #22
Apr

v8 #23
May

v8 #24
Jun

v9 #25
Jul

v9 #26
Aug

v9 #27
Sep

v10 #28
Oct

v10 #29
Nov

v10 #30
Dec
1955
v11 #31
Jan

v11 #32
Feb

v11 #33
Mar

v12 #34
Apr

v12 #35
May

v12 #36
Jun

v13 #37
Jul

v13 #38
Aug

v13 #39
Sep

v14 #40
Oct

v14 #41
Nov

v14 #42
Dec
1956
v15 #43
Jan

v15 #44
Feb

v15 #45
Mar

v16 #46
Apr

v16 #47
May

v16 #48
Jun

v17 #49
Jul

v17 #50
Aug

v17 #51
Sep

v18 #52
Oct

v18 #53
Nov

v18 #54
Dec
1957
v19 #55
Jan

v19 #56
Feb

v19 #57
Mar

v20 #58
Apr

v20 #59
May

v20 #60
Jun

v21 #61
Jul

v21 #62
Aug

v21 #63
Sep

v22 #64
Oct

v22 #65
Nov

v22 #66
Dec
1958
v23 #67
Jan

v23 #68
Feb

v23 #69
Mar

v24 #70
Apr

v24 #71
May

v24 #72
Jun

v25 #73
Jul

v25 #74
Aug

v25 #75
Sep

v26 #76
Oct

v26 #77
Nov

v26 #78
Dec
1959
v27 #79
Jan

v27 #80
Feb

v27 #81
Mar

v28 #82
Apr

v28 #83
May

v28 #84
Jun

v29 #85
Jul

v29 #86
Aug/Sep

v29 #87
Oct

v30 #88
Nov

v30 #89
Dec
1960
v30 #90
Jan

v31 #91
Feb

v31 #92
Mar

v31 #93
Apr

v32 #94
May

v32 #95
Jun

v32 #96
Jul

v33 #97
Aug

v33 #98
Sep

v33 #99
Oct

v34 #100
Nov

v34 #101
Dec
1961
v34 #102
Jan

v35 #103
Feb

v35 #104
Mar

v35 #105
Apr

v36 #106
May

v36 #107
Jun

v36 #108
Jul

v37 #109
Aug

v37 #110
Sep

v37 #111
Oct

v38 #112
Nov

v38 #113
Dec
1962
v38 #114
Jan

v39 #115
Feb

v39 #116
Mar

v39 #117
Apr

v40 #118
May

v40 #119
Jun

v40 #120
Jul

v41 #121
Aug

v41 #122
Sep

v41 #123
Oct

v42 #124
Nov

v42 #125
Dec
1963
v42 #126
Jan

v43 #127
Feb

v43 #128
Mar

v43 #129
Apr

v44 #130
May

v44 #131
Jun

v44 #132
Jul

v45 #133
Aug

v45 #134
Sep

v45 #135
Oct

v46 #136
Nov

v46 #137
Dec
1964
v46 #138
Jan

v47 #139
Feb

v47 #140
Mar

v47 #141
Apr

v48 #142
May/Jun

v48 #143
Jul/Aug

v48 #144
Sep/Oct

v48 #145
Nov/Dec
1965
v48 #146
Jan

v48 #147
Feb

v48 #148
Mar

v48 #149
Apr

v48 #150
May

v49 #151
Jun

v49 #152
Jul

v49 #153
Aug

v49 #154
Sep

v49 #155
Oct

v49 #156
Nov

v49 #157
Dec
1966
v49 #158
Jan

v49 #159
Feb

v49 #160
Mar

v49 #161
Apr

v49 #162
May

v50 #163
Jun

v50 #164
Jul

v50 #165
Aug

v50 #166
Sep

v50 #167
Oct

v50 #168
Nov

v50 #169
Dec
1967
v50 #170
Jan

v50 #171
Feb

v50 #172
Mar
     
v51 #173
Jul

v51 #174
Aug

v51 #175
Sep

v51 #176
Oct

v51 #177
Nov

#178
Dec
1968  
#179
Feb

#180
Mar

#181
Apr
   
#182
Jul
   
#183
Oct

#184
Nov

#185
Dec
1969
#186
Jan

#187
Feb

#188
Mar

#189
Apr

#190
May

#191
Jun

#192
Jul

#193
Aug

#194
Sep
 
#195
Nov

#196
Dec
1970
#197
Jan

#198
Feb

#199
Mar

#200
Apr
               
1971    
#201
Mar

New Worlds Quarterly
(#202)
 
New Worlds Quarterly 2
(#203)
1972  
New Worlds Quarterly 3
(#204)
 
New Worlds Quarterly 4
(#205)
1973  
New Worlds Quarterly 5
(#206)
 
New Worlds 6 (#207)
in US as New Worlds #5 (1974)
1974  
New Worlds 7 (#208)
in US, with some changes, as New Worlds #6 (1974)
 
1975  
New Worlds 8
(#209)
 
New Worlds 9
(#210)
1976  
New Worlds 10
(#211)
   
1977        
1978 #212, Spring
#213, Summer
 
#214, Winter
1979
#215, Spring
     
#216, Sep
 
1991
New Worlds 1 (v62 #217)
1992
New Worlds 2 (v62 #218)
1993
New Worlds 3 (v62 #219)
1994
New Worlds 4 (v62 #220)
1995  
1996
New Worlds No. 221 (#221)
1997
New Worlds (v64 #222)

New Worlds Science Fiction (Canada)

Probably started in early 1954 and continued through 1956, ended due to a strike, and started back again with issue 99, and then continued to 142. As far as is known the contents were identical to the UK issues but issues were dated a month or two later. Other issues probably exist.

1954                
v9 #25
Sep
  v9 #27
Nov
 
1955        
v11 #32
May
  v12 #34
Jul
         
 
1960                     v33 #99
Nov
v34 #100
Dec
1961 v34 #101
Jan
v34 #102
Feb
v35 #103
Mar
v35 #104
Apr
v35 #105
May
v36 #106
Jun
v36 #107
Jul
v36 #108
Aug
v37 #109
Sep
v37 #110
Oct
v37 #111
Nov
v38 #112
Dec
1962 v38 #113
Jan
v38 #114
Feb
v39 #115
Mar
v39 #116
Apr
v39 #117
May
v40 #118
Jun
v40 #119
Jul
v40 #120
Aug

v41 #121
Sep
v41 #122
Oct
v41 #123
Nov
v42 #124
Dec
1963 v42 #125
Jan
v42 #126
Feb
v43 #127
Mar
v43 #128
Apr
               

New Worlds Science Fiction (New Zealand)

Probably started in early 1954 and continued through 1964. As far as is known the contents and cover dates were identical to the UK issues.

New Worlds Science Fiction (U.S.)

1960    
v1 #1
Mar

v1 #2
Apr

v1 #3
May

v1 #4
Jun

v1 #5
Jul
         

Variant Issues

When New Worlds was relaunched in 1946, the first issue had a cover by Bob Wilkin (as shown above), but sold poorly. When issue #2 appeared in late 1946 with a cover by Victor Caesari it sold so well that in early 1947 Carnell had the remaining stock of #1 stripped of the covers. He then had a new cover - the Caesari one, with the date, number and story title blanked out - wrapped around the stripped issue #1. It also sold well.

The second "variant" issue is much rarer as John Carnell described in "A History Of New Worlds", published in A History And Checklist Of New Worlds (B.S.F.A. fanzine, 1959, ed. Eric Bentcliffe).

The first issue from the new printer (No: 21) should have commenced in April but was delayed at the works and eventually was published with a dateline of June 1953. At the same time and in the same format, Nova had launched 'Nova Novels' and four titles had been put in hand at the printers. Only the first one - "Stowaway to Mars" by John Beynon ever saw print. The printer had undertaken more than he could cope with, and the editorial wheels ground almost to a halt as delay followed delay and no 'New Worlds' No: 22 was printed. On various occasions, while still at the printers, it was dated August, then Autumn, then October and finally December, before actually going to press.

Even after the issue had been printed further delays ensued before I received three advance copies - on the 16th January 1954! We refused to accept delivery in view of the fact that the issue was already out of date and thereafter we were involved in semi-legal discussions which precluded the possibility of continuing publication. Two of the three copies of that ill-fated original No: 22 were used by the solicitors as evidence, the third copy I retained; the rest were held under bond and subsequently destroyed. It therefore transpires that I now have the only copy of that original issue No: 22 in the world -- for what that is worth!

Naturally, you will not find the unpublished issue of No: 22 listed in the accompanying checklist, as it was never officially on sale. But for those who keep records the complete contents were as follows:-

If you look through the checklist you will find that all the stories were subsequently used in later issues of 'New Worlds'.
If anyone knows what happened to that remaining copy please contact me!

1947
v1 #1
Variant
1953 #22
Variant