$1,890
pledged of $16,800pledged of $16,800 goal
19
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Thu, April 30 2015 2:03 AM UTC +00:00
$1,890
pledged of $16,800pledged of $16,800 goal
19
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Thu, April 30 2015 2:03 AM UTC +00:00

About

So what is FUTURES PAST?

Welcome to one of the largest and most ambitious projects ever attempted in the genre of science fiction. In the pages of FUTURES PAST we will be covering in unprecedented detail, the birth and development of modern science fiction from 1926 to 1975. Unlike other science fiction reference works which offer a mere page or two to a given year, highlighting only the most notable items, we will be devoting an entire volume to each year. This will not only include comprehensive coverage of all the books, films and magazines published, but also in-depth review of less prominent topics such as early fandom, conventions, fanzines, old time sf radio plays and serials, as well as extensive consideration to international science fiction. Each volume of the series is presented in proper sequential order, beginning with 1926 when the first science fiction magazine, Amazing Stories, was published.  

The premiere issue of FUTURES PAST
The premiere issue of FUTURES PAST

The first installment of FUTURES PAST (1926: The Birth of Modern Science Fiction) is currently available in PDF format.  This digital edition can be viewed on any PC, Mac, tablet, laptop, and even cellphones.   The issue is 64 information-packed pages on everything happening in the world of science fiction in the milestone year of 1926, all in brilliant full color.  Just check out the screen captures below. One thing that will not be included in the series will be advertising - each issue is completely ad free.  So when we say 64 pages, we mean that every one of those pages is overflowing with content and not fluff.

Table of Contents page from the premiere issue
Table of Contents page from the premiere issue

In the pages of this and upcoming issues of FUTURES PAST you will relive all the novels, from THE MASTERMIND OF MARS, BRAVE NEW WORLD, and THE WEAPON MAKERS all the way to more recent classics such as DUNE, THE LEFT HAND OF DARKNESS and SLAUGHTER HOUSE FIVE.  Follow the early careers of legendary authors including Bradbury, Clarke, Heinlein, Sturgeon, Asimov, Leinster and many others, year by year, story by story and novel by novel. Learn about the thousands of "old time radio" plays produced for shows such as DIMENSION X and BEYOND TOMORROW.

an excerpt from the BOOKS section of FUTURES PAST
an excerpt from the BOOKS section of FUTURES PAST
Follow the careers and works of the great sf personalities
Follow the careers and works of the great sf personalities
Indepth coverage of all the sf magazines and fanzines
Indepth coverage of all the sf magazines and fanzines
Even complete coverage of magazines such as WEIRD TALES
Even complete coverage of magazines such as WEIRD TALES
and much, much more!
and much, much more!

Attend the the first Worldcon held in New York City in 1939 and many other major ones since then. Read about the award winners and the activities. See photos and hear all the details from the people who were there.  In the pages of FUTURES PAST you will find the most comprehensive coverage of amateur clubs and fanzines over the years, beginning with THE COMET published in 1930 by the Science Correspondence Club in Chicago.  If that's not enough, how about sf from the rest of the world as well. We will cover significant publications, people and events from...France, Germany, Russia, China, India, and wherever else significant contributions were made.

We'll cover all the films and even sf stage plays
We'll cover all the films and even sf stage plays

Yes, every book, every magazine, every film, convention, and so much more! FUTURES PAST is dedicated to all those amazing people who helped to shape our modern world by giving us a sense of wonder, by showing us possible futures and addressing social issues long before they touched the mainstream, and by simply daring to ask, "what if..." Our goal is to keep alive the people, works and memories of a great genre and introduce them to a whole new generation of readers, thinkers and dreamers.

What will the funds be used for?

The majority of the money raised will be used to pay for printing costs for the magazine as well as the other rewards.  Some of the funds will go to badly needed upgrades of computer equipment and software.  A portion of the funds will also be set aside to pay for both article reprints and new articles by the top science fiction writers and historians in the field.

Has FUTURES PAST been done before?

You may be surprised to learn that FUTURES PAST is not a new endeavor for me. This is actually a reboot from the early 1990s when I managed to produce 4 issues (1926 - 1929) over a two year period before production costs and time issues forced me to abandon this great project. Back then this was a one-man labor of love and resources were difficult to get to. There really was no practical internet to speak of. Snail-mail and the telephone were the only means to reach out long distance, and research was done by driving hundreds of miles to university libraries which maintained the books, magazines, and journals I required. No Google, no Wikipedia, and no Amazon with their overnight deliveries. Oh, and no laptops – pens, pencils, lots of paper, and quarters for copiers. Today I have an impressive collection of technology and information resources within arm’s reach and the collective knowledge of the world just clicks away. Because of this FUTURES PAST is now exponentially easier and faster to produce, and better than I ever could have imagined 20 years ago, even with a full staff and all the money in the world.  The new version of FUTURES PAST is vastly more detailed, with full color illustrations and high quality production values.  The 1926 issue of today is almost unrecognizable from the original format printed nearly a quarter of a century ago.  During that time I have learned a great deal about business, historical research, digital publishing and a great many other facets which go into making FUTURES PAST an invaluable reference resource and just plain fun to read.

The original FUTURES PAST fanzine
The original FUTURES PAST fanzine

Celebrating 100 years of Science Fiction!

On March 10, 2026 the FUTURES PAST family (and friends) will be celebrating 100 years since that first issue of Hugo Gernsback's AMAZING STORIES arrived on the newsstands marking the birth of our beloved genre.  Between now and then we will be busy not only producing FUTURES PAST but witnessing, recording, and archiving the people, places, items and events which are still part of that history today.  Over the coming decade we will be creating/gathering videos, oral histories, photos, letters and much more as the basis for an ongoing and ever growing archive of the history of the field.  We hope you will join us on this fantastic journey and we hope to see you in 2026!

Risks and challenges

The risks and challenges of producing FUTURES PAST are minimal. The first issue (1926) has already been available for several months in PDF format and the second (1927) issue is near completion. Once the 35 day project is done and we have reached our project goal, the pdf files will be sent out that same day. As soon as we receive the project funds, our printers and suppliers will be given the green light and the printed copies and other rewards will be on their way to our backers within six to eight weeks. All our suppliers and contacts are familiar to us and have many years of experience to their credit. Though there is always a small chance of something going wrong or being behind schedule, keeping our backers informed is our first priority and we will do everything possible to make sure this project is completed on time, on budget and with little or no issues.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 2 or more About US$ 2

    Every single dollar helps! And as our way of saying thank you for your support, we'll email you a pdf of 4 beautifully rendered limited-edition bookmarks with science fiction scenes and the FUTURES PAST logo. Your name will also be listed on the support boards on our website and Facebook page

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    Pledge US$ 7 or more About US$ 7

    A pdf copy of the premiere issue of FUTURES PAST (1926: The Birth of Modern Science Fiction), the 4 bookmarks pdf, and name recognition on our website and Facebook page.

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    Pledge US$ 12 or more About US$ 12

    Both the print copy and pdf of FUTURES PAST #1 along with the 4 limited-edition bookmarks pdf, and name recognition on our website and Facebook page.

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    Pledge US$ 25 or more About US$ 25

    A signed Print copy and a pdf of FUTURES PAST #1 / pdf of 4 limited ed. bookmarks / high quality all metal pen w/FP logo / lifetime free pdf upgrade to FP #1 / name recognition on our website and Facebook page.
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    Pledge US$ 50 or more About US$ 50

    All of the above plus:
    A signed print copy and pdf of FUTURES PAST #2: 1927 when it is completed in late spring / lifetime free pdf upgrades for FP #1 and #2 / 16oz FP coffee mug

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 75 or more About US$ 75

    All the rewards from #1 through #5 plus inclusion of your video message / photo / etc. as part of the video documentary which will be created leading up to the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the birth of modern Science Fiction on March 10, 2026 (the day the first issue of AMAZING STORIES hit the newsstands). This will also include free access to the event and all activities.

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    Pledge US$ 100 or more About US$ 100

    Everything include up through Reward #6 plus:
    Pdfs of all 4 original issues of FUTURES PAST from the 1990s covering 1926 - 1929 / a limited edition FP tee-shirt

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    Pledge US$ 150 or more About US$ 150

    All of the previous rewards listed above plus:
    a print copy of one of the original four issues of FUTURES PAST from the 1990s (this is the last batch available anywhere!) signed and dated to the backer.

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    Pledge US$ 250 or more About US$ 250

    All the rewards from #1 through #7 (**does NOT include the print FP from 1990s in reward #8) plus: a limited run, numbered, signed hardcover edition of FUTURES PAST #1. AND!! as they say in the commercials "but wait there's more!" You will also receive a PDF subscription to the entire 50 volume FP series - this alone is a minimum $300 value, not including all the other great rewards included.

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    Pledge US$ 500 or more About US$ 500

    All the rewards from #1 through #9 (**does NOT include the print FP from 1990s in reward #8) plus: 30 minute Skype video conversation w/Jim Emerson / publication of your sf article in an upcoming issue of FUTURES PAST (must be based on FP specs and be relevant to a particular issue / 25 copies of the issue your article is published in

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  11. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1,250 or more About US$ 1,250

    All the rewards from #1 through #10 (**does NOT include the print FP from 1990s in reward #8) plus: Science Fiction weekend in Indianapolis with personalized visits/tours of:
    - the Ray Bradbury Collection at IUPUI
    - the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library
    - exploring science fiction archival collections at the Indiana University Lilly Library in Bloomington, Indiana.
    - tour the more traditional sites of Indy + dinner + hotel stay included (*travel to Indy is not included in reward and is at backer's expense)
    AND!! a print subscription to the entire 50 volume series of FUTURES PAST with all issues personally signed and the lifetime pdf upgrade for all issues.

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    Pledge US$ 8,000 or more About US$ 8,000

    All the rewards from #1 through #11 (** including all four print FPs from 1990s in reward #8) plus: a commissioned digital portrait of the backer to be created by the FUTURES PAST team under direction of the backer / a bronze plaque recognizing the backer as "Founding Patron" of our organization.

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Funding period

- (40 days)