Another great copyediting moment: struggling with proofs of my
reference-book essay on Robert Holdstock, I found 'ley line' carefully corrected
to 'lea line'. A Google search to confirm that the former spelling is
internationally used in woo-woo circles also revealed that Lea Line is in fact
a breed of potbellied pig. 'Oh God,' said Mr Holdstock when told about this
new resonance of his Celtic boar imagery. Meanwhile
Peter Nicholls, co-editor of
Encyclopedia of SF, is heading for media fame in his native Australia
thanks to the hour-long TV documentary The What If
Man: The Science Fictional Life of Peter Nicholls. Premiere on 19 July in
Melbourne; further screenings at Melbourne Film Festival (July/August) and on
Aussie national TV (SBS Network).
As Others See Us. The New Yorker (17 June) ran a merry
article on the hobby of its retired editor Gardner Botsford, who collects books
so specialized that 'they have an audience of three.' These laughably bizarre
Haikus for Jews, Creative Insomnia, Successful Fund Raising
Sermons, Refrigeration in America,
Knitting With Dog Hair and, alas, The Best of Stanley G. Weinbaum.
Mike Moorcock is feeling frivolous: 'For fun, I've written to Del
Rey about the new David Gemmell books the title of the first of three is The
White Wolf. Since he's already done Ravenheart ('Ravenbrand' was the
title of the last Elric in Interzone) and Stormrider, I
suggested that the as yet untitled books in his series be called
Bin of the Black Sword and Weed of the White Wolf
as well go all the way.'
M.J. 'Simo' Simpson reports from the Douglas Adams biographical
workbench: 'Have just finished first draft of
Hitchhiker and it's a mere 48,000 words over my contracted wordcount. I
believe I can reduce this to an acceptable level by deleting "actually"
and "sort of" from all the Adams quotes.'
Simon R. Green has been fearfully slighted in some space-opera
magazine feature that I haven't seen but apparently wrote: 'I read the entire
SFX Deep Space special, and Not One Word about the best-selling
Deathstalker books! I shall take umbrage. Twice daily, in water.' Oh dear, the
SFX editor must have cut my fulsome eulogy to the series in which I die
Thog's Masterclass. Dept of True Romance. 'She leaned over,
her breasts wallowing on his chest, and began to larrup his time-smoothed stump
with her slightly swollen tongue.' (Paul Di Filippo, 'A Mouthful of Tongues')
David Langford is an author and a gentleman.
His newsletter, Ansible,
is the essential SF-insider sourcebook of wit and incongruity. He lives in Reading, England with his wife Hazel, 25,000 books, and a few dozen Hugo awards. He continues to add books and Hugos.