Thoughts . . . by Mark Rich

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

Monday, December 6, 2010

A Mile Beyond the Moon

[written on and intended for July 1, 2010]

Martha ordered a copy of the June Locus when it was announced, and received it this past week, in the last days of the month. While I have been intended to renew my subscription -- for I do have a job now -- I had not yet done so when June's review of C.M.K. appeared.

Gary K. Wolfe writes the review. It is a positive one -- and in a positive note he mentions a mistake that evaded my eye and, more surprisingly, the eagle eye of Bob Silverberg, who went through the text with a fine-toothed comb this last January.

It probably evaded both our attentions because it appears on page one ... in the "Preface," where I was writing relaxedly and Bob was likely not yet into fine-toothed-comb mode. Interestingly, though, Gary Wolfe is mistaken in the sentence in which he mentions the error: "There are a few minor errors and omissions -- Rich only once mentions Kornbluth's important 1958 collection A Mile Beyond the Moon, for example, and he gets the title wrong (as Miles Beyond the Moon)."

Kornbluth's posthumous collection does come in for discussion several times, at appropriate places in K's story -- just not under the name of the collection, which, as far as I could tell, was not determined while Cyril was alive.

As an example of the collection appearing in the narrative of Cyril's life, his re-reading of novelette "Reap the Dark Tide," and his personal reaction to his own writing, came about because he was assembling the book for Doubleday.

In any case, I should have addressed factual matters concerning the book's publication and impact. By the time I was at the point when I might have been developing the subject of the collection's impact, and writing such matters down, however, I was exhausted physically and emotionally (having long before been exhausted financially) by the writing of the book; and that issue, among others, remained unaddressed. The manuscript had grown already to mammoth proportions, moreover.

I certainly should have noted the collection's title chronologically. That I did not is, indeed, an oversight.

Thanks to G.K.W. for a thoughtful review.

Cheers ...

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