Thoughts . . . by Mark Rich

. . . scribbled . . . scrawled . . . trimmed . . . typewritten . . . grubbed up . . . squeezed from circumstance . . .

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Author Copies

Although I've received scant personal comment on C.M. Kornbluth: The Life and Works of a Science Fiction Visionary since January and early February, that was a fairly heady period of time. I had only a few extra copies at hand from McFarland -- and I still have yet to buy more, since the investment is so costly, at the level necessary to obtain a reasonable author's discount ... so I had to pick and choose to whom to send them. My parents had to receive a copy, of course: without their support we would never have managed the move a few years ago, here to Cashton; and we would have been much harder pressed to survive the downturn of the past two years, after the magazines for which I wrote a number of monthly columns shriveled up and blew away in a chill December breeze.

The other extras went to a few good souls who had helped me out -- not to all of them, since I had only that handful of copies. From one of those people I heard nothing; and I have yet to learn, actually, if he saw it and appreciated what it represented, before his death. Phil Klass was quite ill and hospitalized, around the time those early copies arrived. I can only hope Fruma showed him the book, and perhaps pointed out the ways in which I put to use his memories -- especially in the final chapter, hidden at the end of the short "analysis" subsection of the book. There, I drew upon Phil's experiences as a way of suggesting an important aspect of Cyril's character. The option of writing that chapter would have been closed to me without knowledge of the particular way in which Phil faced the trial of his involvement in World War II, and the way in which he dealt with the implications of that trial's ending.

Cheers ...

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