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Meet the Webmaster


Hello, my name is Galen Strickland, and I post on the Templeton Gate Forums (and other places across the net) as "ecgordon." I've lived in various places over the years: Venice, California; Raleigh, North Carolina; San Antonio and Austin, Texas...but now I am back in my hometown of Waco, Texas. I have worked in a variety of fields over the years, but for the longest time in a construction related trade, as well as with building supply retailers. At the current time, I am not working, so I hope to devote more time to reading and reviewing. I am an SF fanatic, primarily of the classic authors, but of films and television as well. I consider myself a serious student of the genre and my favorites are ones I would classify as the more literary regardless of whether they are or were the most popular. I am not that proficient with computers, and have been using fairly old software to build this site, but my empasis will always be on the content rather than the style or look of the place, although I've recently upgraded some things and have had help from my son to hopefully make this a better looking site.

When I first got on the net back in late '99, some of the first searches I made were for sites devoted to my favorite SF authors, number one being Robert A. Heinlein, one of the best (although inactive now) on him being www.wegrokit.com. That site still has the most comprehensive information on RAH including an extensive list of links to other sites, book reviews and cover scans, along with several well-written essays. It also used to have a bulletin board, where I encountered several other RAH fans who I have remained in contact with, some of whom are active on our forums. I have frequented quite a few other bulletin board sites, posting under a different "handle" on each, one I felt appropriate for that particular site. My original ISP was Prodigy, and for the most part I was satisfied with their service, and one aspect I enjoyed a lot was the different "Community" bulletin boards they sponsored. The ones I frequented the most were the Books and Writing, Films, Music, TV & Video, and until it was dismantled, the Science Fiction Community. Those are all gone now, victims of Prodigy's merge with SBC, and later with Yahoo. But I must credit another b-board as generating the impetus for the creation of this site, that being the board (formerly known as The Dominion) on www.scifi.com. On that board I post with the user name "easygordon," which is a variation of "ecgordon," which refers to the main character in Heinlein's Glory Road.

I eventually wandered down to a section known as WAAAAAAAAAY OUT! in the LEFT FIELD section (no longer there, lost in one of their many board revamps). There I encountered a group who referred to themselves as The Happy Islanders, and they had fashioned themselves a comfortable niche far away from the cares of the real world, where they came together to chat, play games, and discuss various and sundry notions. Amongst this group of entries are those referred to as the !Guessing! posts, and the one I posted on first was !Guess the Trivia Answers! About the third or fourth post I did was a trivia quiz on Heinlein, and I was perplexed when some of the responses were "I don't know who Heinlein is!" and "I've only read Stranger in a Strange Land but nothing else." I am afraid I came close to alienating several on that board when I went into several diatribes about why I felt RAH was a great writer, one I recommend to anyone interested in SF. One of the others, known as PsychicWarrior (Hi, PW, and thanks again!), made a comment about whether or not I had written the Great American Novel yet since she thought I had a good writing style. To tell you the truth that surprised me, since I have always been disappointed that I was NOT a good writer. But it got me to thinking that even though I might not have the imaginative spark necessary to create good fiction, my extensive knowledge and enjoyment of SF might enable me to be a good critic or historian of the field. Shortly thereafter I began posting articles on the Prodigy Books and Writing Board, the majority of which you can see here on this site, although most have been edited and/or expanded from the version originally posted there. I started with a general history of the genre (Science Fiction: A Primer), gave some reading recommendations (Science Fiction: Where to Start), then began a series of author profiles. I decided to create this site when my posts there did not generate much response. I am hoping here will be different.

I hope that I will be able to inform you about a lot of great writers, films, and TV shows, even ones you thought you already knew everything about. I would be happy to discuss any aspect of SF with other fans, so please do not hesitate to email me. Also, please visit the Templeton Gate Forums and let everyone know what you think. I would like for this site to be a forum for serious discussion of all aspects of speculative fiction.


Would you like to contribute an article on an SF, Fantasy or Horror book, movie or TV show?
Just email me.

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