Excerpt from “The Creative Works of Joe Wehrle, Jr.” from The Digest Enthusiast No. 8, June 2018. (Quotes gleened from Joe’s interviews or correspondence.)
“My first professional work involved doing spot illustrations for Galaxy and If digest science fiction magazines,” Joe said in 2010. “I had done comics and other stuff for fanzines, and I sent some clips to Frederik Pohl around 1967, asking if I could get some work from his magazines. He replied that he liked what I had sent, but could I show him something a little more subdued? So I worked up a small folio of illustrations that I felt were more in keeping with the style of those two magazines. Fred said ‘OK!’ and directed his staff to begin sending me galley proofs of stories slated for upcoming issues.
“The galleys were arriving regularly in the mail. I was really on my way! Then Galaxy Publications was sold, and the new editors sent me nothing more.”
Joe’s artwork appears in: Galaxy Jun–Aug, & Oct. 1968 If May–Aug. 1968 Joe’s bibliography appears on the Larque Press website.
Excerpt from “The Creative Works of Joe Wehrle, Jr.” from The Digest Enthusiast No. 8, June 2018. (Quotes are from Joe’s correspondence.)
By 1964, already an accomplished illustrator, Joe began work on a comic strip, Fawn the Dark Eyed. In the series’ earliest incantation, Fawn was also dark haired. “Fawn started as a self-published fanzine in ’64. We had a number of pages in color, which was unusual at that time—only one or two other people experimented with color in their fanzines.”
I know of only two issues, but as the ’70s dawned, Ed Aprill, Jr., who published a series of comic strip reprint books of Buck Rogers and The Spirit, showed interest. “At one point Ed was talking about doing a high-quality 9” x 12” book with a new Fawn story, and I had actually started work on it when he was killed in a car crash.” A tragic set-back, but Joe continued drawing and writing, with Fawn always in mind.
The Symbiotes (Analog September 1972). Trigger Argee discovers an eight-inch tall man hiding among utensils on her restaurant lunch table. She helps him escape his pursuer and teams up with Telzey, but is captured when Telzey leaves to contact the Psychology Service for help, and wakes up later in a distant star system. Then begins an odyssey to escape and free the little people, during which she discovers she has latent, if limited, psionic abilities that she needs to cultivate for her own protection. After her adventure, Telzey assures her that being a functioning psi is not such a disadvantage. Reprinted in T’nT: Telzey and Trigger.
Child of the Gods (Analog March 1972). A dangerously accomplished psi takes control of Telzey’s mind when her guard is down, forcing her to deal with an alien creature that is causing disasters at his crystal mine on Maunafra. He is also illegally mining djeel, the oil which the alien needs to escape the planet on which it has been stranded—which is the root cause of the problem. Reprinted in T’nT: Telzey and Trigger.
The Lion Game (Analog August and September 1971). Telzey doesn’t entirely trust the Psychological Service, but occasionally teams up with them for mutual benefit. The Service has detected that there’s a new psi awareness of Telzey’s abilities at her college, and makes arrangements for her to Tinokti as an agent—and as bait! That sets her up for a nerve-wracking chase between connecting portals on the planet, where everyone can be an enemy. Reprinted in The Lion Game.
Poltergeist (Analog July 1971). This is a very short piece in which Telzey, off on a weekend by herself, encounters a distraught man threatened by his own unrealized alternate personality, and has to find a way to deal with it, in order to save him and herself. Reprinted in Telzey Amberdon (Baen, 2000).
Glory Day (Analog June 1971). Telzey and Trigger are stunned, kid- napped, and wind up on Askanam, a day before the annual Glory Day tournaments in a political scheme that involves other telepaths. Telzey’s psionic abilities are more highly developed than the others’ and she helps Trigger develop a mind- shield. Still, they have a tough time working their way out of a danger- ous situation. Reprinted in T’nT: Telzey and Trigger (Baen, 2000).
Company Planet (Analog, May 1971). Telzey travels to Fermilaur, where a friend is undergoing “body remodeling,” which doesn’t sound like a good idea to Telzey. While on the planet, she uncovers a conspiracy, and her life is in danger when the powers that be suspect she is a telepath. She enters the mind of a telepathic pet animal and plants distracting thoughts to keep it from alerting its owner about her abilities. Reprinted in The Telzey Toy.
The Telzey Toy (Analog January 1971). A producer of biological the- ater puppets that supposedly have no self-awareness kidnaps Telzey and makes a self-aware duplicate of her who agrees to be called Gaziel. Telzey’s psi abilities have been repressed until the man, Ti, can learn how to control them and her for his own purposes. Telzey needs to free herself as well as Gaziel, who will gradually be able to develop her own distinct personality when free to do so.