Written by Fred Patten, and intended for Apa L, 2195th Distribution, LASFS Meeting No. 3643, June 7, 2007.
Golden State Colonial Convalescent Hospital, 10830 Oxnard Street, North Hollywood, California 91606-5098.
Telephone: hospital(818) 763-8247; personal (818) 506-3159 * eMail:email@example.com
|Nippon 2007 in 2007!||Denvention 3 in 2008!||Salamander Press #2678|
I did not get out of bed again last week (except to go to the bathroom, and for walking exercise with the therapist).
I had lots of time to work on adding the contents of Delap's F&SF Review, the monthly s-f book review journal for libraries that I co-edited & published from 1975 to 1977, into the Internet Speculative Fiction Database (ISFDB) at Texas A&M University. Here is the entry for one issue as a sample:
I had forgotten how many LASFS members wrote reviews for the magazine during those two years. Mike Glyer, Allan Rothstein, Marty Cantor, Bill Warren, Dan Alderson, Sandy Cohen, Bill Glass - quite a few. Alan Brennert was recruited while working as a clerk at Wonderworld Books in Long Beach; my stint as a magazine publisher from 1975 to 1977 overlapped both my career as a s-f bookstore partner which was winding down in 1975, and my involvement with starting anime fandom in 1977. I am still annoyed by how Texas A&M's automated data base insists on listing Frederick Patten as a pseudonym of Fred Patten rather than as an alternate name. The ISFDB lists me as having written 163 reviews, and that is not all of them. The issues of DF&SFR for April (#1) through December (#9) 1975 still have to be added to the data base, and I hope that Dick Geis' Science Fiction Review/The Alien Critic will be included eventually. But a month ago I did not know that an index of my s-f book reviews existed at all, and now here is an extensive if not complete one. It would probably be too much to hope that the index will someday encompass all my reviews of cartoon and comic books (Amazing Heroes, Animation Magazine, The Comics Journal, WittyWorld, others) as well.
I also wish that I still had the letter that I got from Stephen King in reply to my review of The Shining in DF&SFR's April 1977 issue. I had criticized the writing as uneven, with seeming buildups (such as ominous references to the fire hose on the hotel walls) that were never followed up. King let me know that those aborted buildups were all his editor's fault; The Shining had been almost twice as long when he submitted it, and Doubleday had clumsily hacked whole scenes out of it, including the one where the sinister firehouse came to life and attacked ... I forget whether it was the boy or his mother. It was still 447 pages, which was a huge novel by 1977's standards but is only about average size today. Has The Shining ever been republished with the missing scenes restored?
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On Monday, the hospital got my new, $305, Quadtro® Select® Contour Select TM wheelchair cushion, complete with a memory control unit, a pump to inflate it, and an 88-page instruction manual. "To avoid the hazards identified below, it is your responsibility to check the cushion daily and to use the cushion appropriately." I will let my sister Sherry check it daily; it is difficult for me to even see it while flat on my back in bed. I do not know how long it will be until the nurses allow me into the wheelchair to try it out. This appears to be the foam "eggcrate" cushion that Lee Gold was recommending.
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-- Comments on Last Week's Distribution:
Grok Talk v.2 #1 - (Gallatin) Welcome back. ## If you want to discuss your movie project with other writers, fine. You will have to tell us more about it to get any meaningful feedback, though. Are you developing the story as a 1940s period piece, or are you updating it to the present? A period piece could be a hard sell, although Lucas & Spielberg made it work with Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark. There was general disappointment by all, including George Pal, when Warner Bros. ordered him to make his Doc Savage movie a camp comedy instead of a serious drama. Most fans felt that the success of the later Raiders of the Lost Ark, which was played straight, proved that he was right. An adventure movie based on a s-f hero comic book would pretty much need some political and sociological undertones to be taken seriously today.
De Jueves #1533 - (Moffatt) Furry fan Roz Gibson (whose novel-in-progress I am critiquing), in her live journal, reports that her cat Charlie is always bringing her presents of half-dead gophers and lizards which he drops at her feet inside the house, leaving them for her to catch, put out of their agony, and dispose of. Is this a manifestation of feline love, or a practical joke? ## If the Downey City Library does not have any book (and it does not seem to have Off the Main Sequence), you might be able to get it from the County of Los Angeles Public Library (which does). Are the Alondra or Bell Gardens branches of the CLAPLibrary close to you? If not, maybe Karl Lembke could get it for you at his nearby CLAPLibrary and bring it to you at a LASFS meeting, as he does for me with any County Library books that I want. ## Public libraries used to have a prejudice against the Science Fiction Book Club's original editions. I am glad this is no longer true.
Acupuncture is a Jab Well Done - (Cantor) 600 dpi makes my ˇRR! quite attractive, thanks. All in all, though, I miss no longer being able to lay out ˇRR! to my satisfaction, and take my cut-&-paste masters to Office Depot to print it myself. I wonder if the self-service photocopiers at Office Depot have been upgraded since March 2005 when I had my stroke? Your report of how the Van Wagners transmit ˇRR! to you today for printing ("...check it for viruses...") makes me nervous.
Godzilla Verses # 142 -- (DeChancie) Do the local fans who play Saturday Night Poker at the Lubovs include the members of the 2008 Westercon Committee? Lubov has already been a Loscon G-o-H, but if she returns to L.A., maybe she can arrange for a showing at one of the galleries that seem to be all around Southern California and have showings of animation artists' personal work. They have websites. I announced the "Girls Drawin Girls" exhibit by women animators at the Pehr Space gallery near Echo Park, in January. Gallery Nucleus in Alhambra and the Corey Helford Gallery in Culver City are two others that I know the names of. I am theorizing that art galleries sympathetic to animation-style art may be similarly sympathetic to s-f/fantasy art. Worth a try, maybe. Come to think of it, is the LASFS missing a bet by failing to make up special Loscon flyers emphasizing its fantasy Art Show and putting them out at the art galleries around L.A.?
Vanamonde #733 - (Hertz) So the Bachem Ba-349 fighter was not expected to last for more than one flight? That makes the concept of a particle-board aircraft sound more plausible. Still, I imagine that the Luftwaffe was just as happy that their airbases were captured before they had to send any pilots aloft in them. I reported in my Aussiecon III trip report in 1999 visiting the Royal Australian Air Force's museum in Canberra. One of their planes was a never-flown Messerschmitt Me-163 Komet rocket fighter, captured at a Luftwaffe airstrip before the Luftwaffe had been able to get any fuel for it. The guide guessed that the Luftwaffe had not tried very hard, because the Me-163 was notorious for fuel leaks in the cockpit, and its highly-corrosive fuel had dissolved more than one pilot.
Oh, All Right!!! - (Lembke) I remember margarine from during World War II, when butter was not available. I have always since thought of it as an inferior substitute for butter, although I understand that it has many champions who prefer it to butter. Since I do not cook, I have no personal experience with its interchangeability in recipes. ## Would it be worth stocking the LASFS' new soft drink vending machine with some of the Mexican Jarritos flavors that were discussed in Apa L last year? The small sample sip that I got at a LASFS meeting was pretty good, and that wasn't even cold.
Toony Loons #44 - (Zeff) Congratulations on finishing your book, and good luck with the next step. Last week I got an e.mail from an Oklahoma fan who has been trying to sell his first novel (as opposed to self-publishing it through CaféPress or Lulu.com) for the past couple of years. "I have finally received the official response from Baen Books on my manuscript. Their rate of production has slowed considerably, so they are pruning some books waiting in the wings. "Hoenix" was pruned with them. At least the long wait (2 years, 5 months) is over. Time to move on." May you have better luck than he has.
Grok Talk v.2 #2 - (Gallatin) The fact that Forry Ackerman was the editor of Famous Monsters of Filmland for many years, promoting "sci-fi" to its readers as the abbreviation for science fiction - and the cheap and scientifically ludicrous movies that filled the magazine as what sci-fi was all about - is exactly why so many fans of written s-f dislike the term. You don't have to be on Marty Cantor's level of literary purity to disagree with equating Hugo and Nebula Award-winning writing and concepts with the likes of Day the World Ended, The Amazing Colossal Man, I Was a Teenage Werewolf, or Santa Claus Conquers the Martians. ## Yes, according to several members who were at the club in 1940 when it declared its separation from the Science Fiction League, it was deliberately voted to make the new name the Los Angeles Science Fantasy Society rather than Science Fiction Society, to include "pure fantasy" like the new Unknown magazine was publishing or Thorne Smith's Topper, which could not be called science fiction but which the club wanted to include in its scope.