In our local bookstore and yours, too, in the section where the self-help books were (replacing the women’s liberation books, which in turn had replaced the American Indian volumes after the Black Studies tomes), we now find shelves of science fiction fantasy paperbacks, hardcovers, fanzines, oversizes, anthologies, collections, serieses, reissues, and so forth.
There is a temptation on the part of science fiction fantasy fans (who thus resemble jazz aficionados, Trotskyites, nudists, and flat earth society members) to believe that our time has come–that we are no longer cranks and weirdos, but members of a majority: in the cultural mainstream at last!
We are not now, nor have we ever been, a mass movement. We are a conspiracy. Beware of conspiracies that become fads. Popularity can be fatal to the nicest of cults. Look at what happened to Christianity…
Heavy Metal editor’s note, November 1977
Contemporary nerd culture take note.