I’ve started to add scans of the Fast Fiction info sheets, which I hope will do something to enhance readers’ understanding of the history of the UK small press. These four-page pamphlets contained listings of small press comics as they appeared, offering what was then a form of “instant” recognition. As Nick Jones has expressed it, “Fast Fiction was the name of the ’80s scene’s mail order distributor (with Elliott and Pinsent in command, as well as Paul Gravett), not to mention the name of the table the outfit had at the regular London Westminster Comic Marts. Essentially, Fast Fiction was the hub around which countless small press comics creators twirled, and the means by which one bought small press comics back then. The way it worked was, you either bought comics off the Fast Fiction table at the Westminster Mart, or picked up one of their four-page flyers, chose the titles you liked the look of, and sent in your order form and money.”
My collection starts in October 1982 with #7 of these sheets, which marks the date when I first went to the Westminster Mart. If anyone has copies of #1-6, please get in touch. I’ve scanned everything quite large to allow for maximum legibility, although the text isn’t OCRd (if you read them, you’ll understand why). Later years will be soon added to the resource, so watch this space.
Illustration on this page is © Eddie Campbell 1983/2011.