Sproutlore is the now official Fan Club of the British humourous science fiction writer, Robert Rankin.
Now in its eigth year, it was founded by Pádraig Ó Méalóid many years ago. He intended the club to have a membership of one (himself), however made the mistake of telling James Shields about it. They produced the first issue of The Brentford Mercury and Sproutlore was born.
Unfortunately nothing happened for a while after that. Not until James Bacon took over, that is. He was rather annoyed that he had paid to join and received nothing after issue one, but rather than sitting around complaining, he decided to take action. Within two weeks issue two came out which was followed by issue 3 a couple of months later.
Since then the club has grown steadily and it now has almost 400 members. To date 23 issues of The Brentford Mercury have been published, with issue 24 due out in March 2001.
As well as producing the newsletter, Sproutlore has organised a number of events for its members. These include appearances by Robert Rankin at science fiction conventions, and "Days out" for members. The first of these was in Brighton in July '97, followed by a coach tour of Brentford with Robert Rankin as the tour guide in '98 and a trip down the Thames in 1999. In 2000 we were involved in the running of the convention, Aliens Stole My Handbag, which featured Robert Rankin as guest of honour.
Membership lasts four issues, this is usually a little over a year. The magazine doesn't come out exactly every three months, so please don't worry if it's a little late.
Also, sometimes we run out of the current issue so it may take a couple of months to get your first issue.
Members will receive:
- Four Fabulous Issues of The Brentford Mercury, featuring previously unpublished stories by Robert Rankin. Also containing News, Reviews, Fiction and details of signing tours.
- The opportunity to buy Merchandise.
- The chance to take part in special Sproutlore Events.
Unfortunately we are no longer able to offer badges. Click here for more information.