Free Extreme Fiction


     I first wrote this essay in 1995 as part of a fanzine series I did named "Skinny Andy" for CAPA-Alpha, an apa centered around comics. It was the twentieth installment of the series, and I think it may very well have been the last. I'm running the installment again now, two decades later, because of something I wrote in the body of the essay that was wrong and the reaction I believe it generated. It's about Frank Sinatra. You'll see it as you read the piece. I'll put it in italics. Even though what I say Harlan and Mr. Sinatra has no basis in actual fact whatsoever, it's still a very important sentence to me. I'll explain on the other end of the essay. It's an amazing story, it really is. It's stuck with me all this time like few other things have.
     See you on the other end.
     Oh, and just so I know you know:
     (1) An apa is a publication centered around a common theme or author. A couple dozen participants submit fifty copies of their fanzines or whatever to a central person once a month, and that person collates the zines, adds a cover and table of contents, then mails the result back to the participants. In the sixties and seventies, there were a lot of apas. Some went on for decades.
     (2) Larry King is a legendary broadcaster who did an interview show for CNN, and before that he did an evening radio call-in show. When I talk about the Larry King show is this essay, I'm talking about the radio show.
     (3) Tom Snyder was the first television broadcaster, in 1970, to host a network national show after Johnny Carson's wildly successful Tonight show. Tom's show was called Tomorrow, it was an interview show, and it ran for a decade before it was replaced by David Letterman.
     On with the essay.