Sunday, January 31, 2010

A comment from 1976

Yesterday I remembered about a second hand bookstall in a local market hall so went in for a nosy. What I was hoping for was some good pulp paperbacks from the glory days, or some more for my Pan Book of Horror Collection. I was hoping for some classic pulp westerns as I've never actually given them a go. Was denied them but found a treat. A Corgi Science Fiction book, Nebula Awards Stories Number 9 from 1976. What struck me was the first line by the editor of the anthology:

Kate Wilhelm:

"Conventional wisdom tells us fiction is dying, the short story is dead."

It made me chuckle, they're still saying that now, 34 years on.

50pence well spent for some classic Sci-Fi.

Problem now being I want to collect the rest of the now defunct series!


  1. How can they say the short story is dying? You get better reads in 2000-5000 word stories than you do in some 50000-80000 word novels. That's only my opinion.

  2. Your post brings back good memories for me, Lee. I found Williams Bayer's SWITCH in an old shoebox on a stall up town in the late 80's and funnily enough it was 50p, too. That book got me into crime fiction! I reviewed it over at the RAP SHEET last year.
    Second-hand book shops rock!

  3. I used to trawl old bookshops and car boots for old books as well. It was the only place you could find some of the old masters like R.E. Howard, H.P. Lovecraft, Lin Carter and the other writers of weird tales I loved. It's a shame that they still aren't as well represented on the chainstore shelves.

    For the old pulp westerns, try and get your hands on some George G. Gilman. EDGE or Adam Steele - talk about anti-heroic ultra savage bad ass killers, all levened with ample amounts of dry wit and double entendres. Now you know why I'm such a cultured literary type!

  4. Funny you should mention R. E. Howard, saw his Conan collection on the stall, might have to go pick them up.

    I don't ever want to be a culture-vulture.