Mid-July Thoughts

I’m getting deep into this project, and as I explore my options, I find myself growing frustrated. Frustrated at the stories lost and not reprinted anywhere that I can find. Frustrated at the amount of excellent material, most of which I cannot use (due to word count) and most of which deserve to be in the volume. Frustrated at the misconceptions about the past.

I have just gone over the 1990s Hugo lists, and year after year, I see that women dominated the categories. Women, who, according to many younger writers, do not write science fiction. Most of these stories haven’t been reprinted anywhere that I can find, because by the 1990s, the annual Hugo Awards volumes were no longer being published. Many of the stories never made it into the year’s best volumes. And to my surprise, many of the authors never included these stories in their short story collections.

So let me put this out there. It’s just a thought at the moment, but tell me your response: If I cut off the research arbitrarily at the year 2000, would anyone object? Yes, lots of great stories have been published this century, but many (most?) of those writers are still producing material. My other cut-off is 2010. I’d rather have older material than recent material. Plus, I need to wrap my arms around the first book somehow, and I need some arbitrary limits.

What say you folks? (If any of you are still here after my long deadline and travel hiatus.) Please let me know what you think.

9 comments for “Mid-July Thoughts

  1. Christine Leov Lealand
    July 17, 2015 at 11:05 pm

    I agree with the 2000 cut-off.
    Perhaps you could list some/all of the stories you are seeking in case people out there somehow have a copy… Just an idea.
    Regards Christine

    • July 17, 2015 at 11:41 pm

      Great idea, Christine. I will ask if I need to. My husband has a collection of most sf magazines/pulps/digests, and many many many anthologies. My problem with those is that they’re in pristine condition and I’m a messy reader. So I’m finding some of the things I’m missing from my own library, but I need to be really careful. 🙂 I will ask, though, if need be. Thanks. And thanks for weighing in.

    • July 18, 2015 at 12:24 am

      Yes.

      Back then I was still somehow tied to the Spanish market. I have a fuzzy idea of some titles age. Some things were published as fast as they could be translated, some were… late. For example, I could defend an almost contemporary translation of Zenna Henderson’s People stories… or the one I found back then, brand new, mid 90s (more complete, I think).

      Take care

  2. July 18, 2015 at 6:13 am

    I think the focus should be on demonstrating the existence of women writers prior to 2000, because it seems to me that fandom has forgotten its history and the heritage that we all stand on when we work today.

  3. Ann Tucker
    July 18, 2015 at 7:53 am

    2000 or 1999 seems like a good cutoff as it uses the turn of the century as a mark. A much less arbitrary cut off than any other year.

  4. Noble Lee
    July 19, 2015 at 5:07 pm

    Kris, I agree with the 2000 cutoff as well. i am so happy that you are doing this. I hope that somehow you will find a way to pull together the works you are enjoying but can’t use in this anthology for one reason or another. Such a shame to lose them……

    Please explain to me a “messy reader.” Do you mark up what you are reading? Or do you spill food and beverage? I laughed when I read this but then realized I want to know more. 🙂

    • July 19, 2015 at 6:04 pm

      (blushes) I write in books. I bend spines. I accidentally rip pages. I leave books open upside down and then pile things on them. I spill things. And when I read something collectable, I worry about ruining the book instead of enjoying the experience. This is why Dean and I have different libraries, in the same house. 🙂

      • Noble Lee
        July 20, 2015 at 6:45 am

        Thank you! I can so picture this. For you books are interactive objects. I write in my cookbooks and non-fiction, but never considered writing in any of my fiction books.

        I am about to sign up for your “Read Like a Writer” lecture. I wonder if that will change my reading habits? 🙂

  5. Stephen M. Saintonge
    July 20, 2015 at 12:55 am

    Cut off at 2000.

    Concerning the books, there are wand scanners for sale that will convert a page of text into a pdf file. You might suggest that HE scan the stories of various authors, and let you then read the file so created.

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