Dick Wilson

(1920 — 1987)

Richard (Dick) Wilson, Jr. was a journalist and science fiction writer who later became director of the news bureau at Syracuse University. While at Syracuse he helped acquire the papers of many prominent SF writers for its library. These papers included proofs, story fragments, correspondence, art, and other materials, making the collection one of the most important of its kind in the world. Wilson wrote an article about this collection in the May, 1967, issue of Worlds of Tomorrow.

He was born in Huntington Station, Long Island, New York, and attended both Brooklyn College (1935-1936) and the University of Chicago (1947-1948). He was a precocious youth, skipping three grades in elementary school, and graduated from high school at 15. While in high school he handset the type for his fanzine, The Atom.

As a fan, Wilson was a Futurian in the late 1930s-early 1940s and wrote for their fanzines and for the magazines they edited. His first published SF story, "Murder from Mars," appeared in the April, 1940, issue of Astonishing Stories, edited by Futurian Frederik Pohl. Wilson occasionally used the pen names of Azygous, Edward Halibut and Jay Cross, and he and Cyril Kornbluth used the joint pseudonym of Ivar Towers. He published the fanzines Incredible (1938-39) with W. E. Marconette, Escape (late 30s), and the Science Fiction News Letter (1937-1939). He was one of the Futurians who were not barred from the First Worldcon by the Exclusion Act.

He served in the United States Army Signal Corps during World War II (1942-1946). After the War he was Chief of Bureau, Transradio Press, Chicago, Washington, D.C., and New York, 1946-1951. He then was a reporter and deputy to the North American editor, Reuters, New York, 1951-1964.

Wilson was married to fellow Futurians Jessica Gould, 1941-1944, and Doris Baumgardt (Leslie Perri), 1950-1967. In 1967 he married Frances Keegan Daniels and then immediately took her to a SF convention in New York.

He was nominated for the 1969 Best Novelette Hugo for "Mother to the World".

His genre books include The Girls from Planet 5 (novel, 1955), Those Idiots from Earth (short stories, 1957), And Then the Town Took Off (novel, 1960), 30-Day Wonder (novel, 1960), and Time Out for Tomorrow (short stories, 1962). He also wrote plays, one a radio play for X-Minus One in 1955 ("Inside Story").

His novelette "Mother to the World" won a Nebula Award in 1969.

For more on his pro career, see http://www.sf-encyclopedia.com/entry/wilson_richard

For an early short biography, see Who's Who in Fandom 1940 p14.