Recursive Science Fiction

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Bailey, William, "Patent Medicine"

Willard Thorpe has a Ph.D. in science fiction literature and a large collection of old SF magazines—sometime in the future. He gets a job at Universal Manufacturing on the basis of an idea he saw in the story "Inside Out" by Charles Fox, Futureways June 1953. As is usual, he is cheated by the giant corporation and tossed out. However, he is able to put his collection to use to turn the tables on the evil plutocrats.

Other Worlds Science Stories 4:9 December 1952 (pp.70-88)

Ball, Cathy, "Love's Prurient Interest" [Romance]

This is a fannish version of Pilgrim's Progress as well as a parody of the bodice ripper novels. Young neofan (hoping to be a trufan) Fervent Hope attends her first science fiction convention. We follow her path through the convention meeting Hucksters, Pros, Gophers, Artists, SMOFs, and the like as she finds that all was not what her father told her it would be. Still, she seems to manage and even enjoy herself.

privately printed, 1983

Shaggy B.E.M. Stories, (ed. by Mike Resnick), Nolacon Press, September 1988 (pp.139-158)

Ball, Margaret, Changeweaver

This is a marginal item. After Tamai of Gandhara saves the world by changing its history, her companion Lord Charles Carlington proposes to write their story as a novel—no one would believe it—after the mode of Poe and Verne. He proposes to designate this type of story as "scientifiction."

Baen Books 0-671-72173-9, June 1993

Ball, Margaret, Mathemagics

Riva Konneva is a swordswomen from an alternate reality living in our universe. One of her best friends in the science fiction writer Norah Tibbs (Norah also writes romance under the name of Kathleen Fraser to earn a living). Riva, her family, and friends are being harassed by a fundamentalist book-burning preacher. Part of the action takes place at SalamanderCon, a science fiction convention.

Baen Books 0-671-87755-0, December 1996

Ball, Margaret, "Tales from the Slushpile"

Riva Konneva is at SalamanderCon on the "On Thud and Blunder" panel. Few people there know she was a professional swordswoman in Dazau. She has sold a number of sword & sorcery stories (and joined SFWA) here on the Planet of the Paper-Pushers. Showing up also is Dwight Mihlhauser, wannabe writer and Aryan racist. The ensuing confrontation makes a favorable impression on the editor from Arbor SingledayChimera (the impression made on Dwight, et al., is less metaphorical).

Did You Say Chicks?!, (ed. by Esther M. Friesner), Baen Books 0-671-87867-0, February 1998 (pp.65-91)

Ballard, J. G., Crash

J. G. Ballard is is the viewpoint character in this novel; this novel is not SF at all but, rather, a psychological look at how sex, death, and automobiles are mixed up and together in our society. However, J. G. Ballard is a noted SF writer, so...

Cape 00782-3, 1973

Farrar, Straus & Giroux 13072-8, 1973

Pinnacle 22-423, September 1974

Panther 04105-2, September 1975; January 1977

Vintage 74109-9, September 1985

Ballard, J. G., "The Venus Hunters"

A marginal item dealing mostly with an astronomer and a man who has seen a flying saucer. The latter works in a cafe called "The Site Tycho" which is also an SF exchange library. The two have some brief discussions of SF.

Amazing Stories 37:6 June 1963 (pp.88-18) [as "The Encounter"]

The Overloaded Man, Panther 2336, November 1967; 02336-4, 1971

Terminal Beach [American edition], Berkley Medallion, June 1964

Penguin 2499, 1966; 002499-9, March 1977

Dent Everyman 02265-2, 1984

The Venus Hunters, Granada Panther 05187-2, 1980

Triad Grenada 05187-2, 1965

Gollancz 03771-7, 1986

Bals, Fred, "Once in a Lullaby" [Mystery]

This is a hard-boiled detective story. The narrator, PI Johnny Dann, is hired to to purchase the ruby slippers worn by Judy Garland in the film The Wizard of Oz for a mysterious client. The client is an old blind lady named Dottie Gale who wants to use them to return to Oz. She succeeds This is based more upon the film than the book (in which the slippers were silver).

Full Spectrum, (ed. by Lou Aronica & Shawna McCarthy), Bantam Spectra 27482-1, September 1988 (pp.285-317)

Banks, Michael joint author with Mike Resnick, et al.

Barbour, David & Raleigh, Richard, Shadows Bend

Frightened by the minions of Cthulhu, H. P. Lovecraft flees Providence, Rhode Island, for Cross Plains, Texas, to meet Robert E. Howard. Together they seek Clark Ashton Smith for assistance. Along the way their party is enlarged by Glory McKenna. Both Lovecraft and Howard seem unsuited for any sort of dealings with the real world. In the end it is really McKenna who saves the world from Cthulhu.

Ace 0-441-00765-1 October 2000

Barnes, John, "Between Shepherds and Kings"

Ray Terani has promised to write a story for the Free Space anthology. The editors Dafydd and Brad have dropped in because he is late with the story. The story tells how Ray works out the story he is going to write for the anthology.

Free Space (ed. by Brad Linaweaver & Edward E. Kramer), Tor 0-312-85957-0, July 1997; Tor 0-312-86720-4, December 1998

Apostrophes and Apocalypses, Tor 0-312-86147-8, December 1998 (pp.306-317)

Barnes, John, Gaudeamus

The co-protagonist is real-life sf/f writer John Barnes, who is seen practicing his sf writing craft (or avoiding doing so when something more interesting happens) and a minor character is his then-wife, sf/f writer Kara Dalkey, and Barnes gets involved in an adventure which is arguably if ambiguously stfnal. There's also some snarky remarks about sf fans and conventions thrown in.

Tor 0-7653-0329-9 14 October 2004

Barnes, John, "Poga"

Burton Goldsbane, a famous fantasy writer had died four years ago. He referred to his daughter as Plain Old Goddamn Amy, but abbreviated this to Poga when the full phrase offended her. She had been written into his books as a character which has caused her considerable problems in her life. Amy lives in Colorado near the border with Elfland (Wyoming in our world). Amy is going to vacation at The Cabin where many of her father's stories took place.

Baen's Universe June 2006 (see also Locus May 2006 page 13 for details)

The Best of Baen's Universe (edited by Eric Flint) Baen Books 1-4165-2136-4 3 July 2007

Barnes, John, "Rod Rapid and His Electric Chair"

James Stuart Jellande is a global ecocide. His algae product converted seawater and sewage into cellulose without controls. The cellulose rotted and Earth is moving to a methane-nitrogen atmosphere. The Grand Project is the last chance to save the world but what remains of government is worried that someone on the project may be as insane as Jellende. They are using a VR chair to try to find out what made him that way to be able to screen the remaining scientists. They belive it was caused by his absorption of the Rod Rapid books, especially #14 (of 29) Rod Rapid and His Atomic Power Satellite (published by Treegate). It may be that he really resented his parents' forcing him to play outside; he wanted to create a world where no one would be able to go outside.

Helix 1 January 2007


Barnes, Steven, Far Beyond the Stars

This is a novelization of the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode in which Captain Sisko goes back to 1953 and is a science fiction writer. The book cover is presented in the format of a science fiction magazine with the stories written by the crew and inhabitants of Deep Space Nine. Benny is writing stories about the Star Trek universe (in this story it apparently is not the creation of Gene Roddenberry, but future reality). This is fine until he writes a story about Deep Space Nine and Captain Benjamin Sisko. America in 1953 is not ready for a Negro [1953 term; currently African-American] to be commanding a space station. Much of this time shuttling seems to be controlled by one of the orbs of the Prophets that landed on Earth centuries ago. Note: there is somewhat of an anachronism—in 1940, what is now the Republic of Mali was the French Soudan.

Pocket Books 0-671-02430-2, April 1998

Barretton, Grandell pseudonym of Randall Garrett

Barshofsky, Philip pseudonym of M. M. Kaplan

Barton, William, "Off on a Starship"

An automated starship lands secretly on Earth to collect specimens. It was not secret enough because the narrator, a young boy, slips on board. He realizes his mistake when the ship takes off. The rest of his life is involved with deserted planets, sentient robots, and the like. He interprets everything through the filter of the science fiction stories he has read and the films he has viewed. When he is able to return to Earth with a fleet, he is unhappy with the lack of progress in the space program and uses his power to revise the course of humanity.

Asimov's Science Fiction 27:9 September 2003 (pp. 92-136)

Barton, William, The Transmigration of Souls

Sgt.-major Astrid Kincaid's lover Dale Milikan was left behind on the other side of an alternate universe portal in the abandoned U.S. base on the Moon. Now that the Chinese and Arabs are on their way, they must be stopped lest they attract the attention of the Space Juggernaut that may destroy, not only Earth, but our entire universe. To complicate matters, the Space Juggernaut has drafted SF-writer Milikan as Probability Manager. The characters visit Barsoom, Pellucidar, and Riverworld.

Warner Aspect 0-446-60147-5, January 1996

Baxter, Stephen, "Columbiad"

The story is narrated by the SF author H. G. Wells. Wells is approached by M. Michel Ardan who claims that the Baltimore Gun Club actually did propel a shell around the Moon. The details were badly misrepresented by Jules Verne. Ardan takes Wells to the site in Florida where the shell was fired into space. However, Ardan's real desire is to return to space.

Science Fiction Age 4:4 May 1996 (pp.68-72)

Bayley, Barrington J., "The Way Into the Wendy House"

The narrator is a science fiction fan immured in the stifling depths of rural England. At the Bell Inn he meets another educated person who tells him that at the Bowling Green Clubhouse there are the ghosts of people who have never lived and never will. These ghosts spend all their times playing games and cannot interact with the real world. There, the narrator finds an anthology The Book of Science-Fiction Writers but he does not recognize any of the authors or the magazines cited. One of the people in the clubhouse approaches the narrator; this person's name is in the book—Barrington J. Bayley. The narrator attempts to get him to leave for The Bell and the real world.

Interzone 71 May 1993 (pp.47-51)

Beaumont, Charles & Oliver, Chad, "I, Claude"

Something of a parody of Bradbury's "The Exiles" and "Usher II."  Claude Adams, dictator of Earth, flees to the planet Vulcan when a revolution overthrows his government. There, on Sarboom, as the natives call it, he finds characters from the old romances and a writer who is Ray Bradbury (although not so-called by name). He destroys the last books ad, with them, the characters. He reigns on Sarboom until atomic holocaust destroys life on Earth. He then returns with lovely Woola to repopulate the Earth.

Fantasy & Science Fiction 19:2 February 1956 (pp.99-112)

Laughing Space, (edited by Isaac Asimov & Janet O. Jeppson), Houghton Mifflin 30519-5, March 1982 (pp.361–373)

Beaumont, Charles & Oliver, Chad, "To Hell With Claude"

Claude Adams has repopulated Earth and thinks he has wiped out fantasy. However, he catches his wife Woola with a copy of Alice in Wonderland. He discovers that all the fantasy is coming from Plainville, now renamed Arkham. He travels there and matriculates at Miskatonic University inhabited by SF writers. He and his roommate Cleve go to Hell where he deals with Tony [Boucher] and McComas. They leave Hell and he finds out that Cleve is really Eve to his Adam. Written by Oliver from notes made by Oliver and Beaumont before the latter's death in 1967. There is an introduction explaining how the story came to be written.

Charles Beaumont: Selected Stories, (by Charles Beaumont), Arlington Heights IL: Dark Harvest 0-913165-23-9, 1988, (pp. 347-359)

Beerbohm, Max, "Enoch Soames"

Max Beerbohm is a character. He is the friend of another author, Enoch Soames, whose vanity is exceeded only by his lack of talent. His three books of verses (the last self-published) met with no enthusiasm. While drunk, he asserts that he will be recognized in the future—perhaps one hundred years hence. A well-dressed gentleman grants his request for the usual price. Soames is transported to the reading room of the British Museum on 3 June 1997. Everyone there is wearing a drab uniform and is hairless. English is spelled phonetically. Soames finds a reference to himself in a book on nineteenth century literature—not as an author, but as the title of a short story by Max Beerbohm!  [H. G. Wells' novel The Time Machine is referenced when Soames first disappears.]

Century, May 1916

Seven Men, Alfred A. Knopf, Inc., 1920

Deals With the Devil, (edited by Basil Davenport), Ballentine 326K, 1958 (pp.24-48)

Bell, Neil, Life Comes to Seathorpe

A British journalist retires to the seaside town of Seathorpe. He works on his novel but is unsatisfied with it and destroys the manuscript. Now the essential mad scientist looses a plague of artificial life forms on the town. The second part of this novel does not really involve the journalist but is the notebooks of the scientist. Neil Bell was a pseudonym of Stephen Southwold (born Stephen Henry Critten).

Eyre & Spottiswoode, 1946

Ian Henry Publications, Inc. 1976 0-86025-051-2


Benford, Gregory, "Centigrade 233"

Alex has inherited a huge trove of SF magazines and books from his Uncle Herb. However, there is no market for linear reading in the world of the future. Alex is able to make money and gain status by holding potlatch ceremonies in which these last copies are burned. [Centigrade 233 is Fahrenheit 451.4]

Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine 15:4 December 1991 (pp. 40-51)

Benford, Gregory & Brin, David, "Paris Conquers All"

The Martian invasion is in full force. M. Jules Verne, noted science fiction author, is able to grasp the overall situation. He manages to coordinate the efforts of the notable scientists and destroy the Martians at the Eiffel Tower, luring them there as only the French could do. Vive la France! Vive l'amour.

The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction 90:3 March 1966 (pp.123-139)

War of the Worlds: Global Dispatches (edited by Kevin J. Anderson), Bantam Spectra 0-553-10353-9 (SF Book Club 13620), 1996 (pp186-202)

Bensen, Donald R., And Having Writ...

An alien spaceship, Wanderer, is about to crash on Earth. The crew uses the Probability Displacer and winds up landing off San Francisco in the ocean. (In our world they and their ship became the Tunguska event.)  One of their native guides is the SF writer H. G. Wells. His writing is mentioned by a number of people, including Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Thomas A. Edison. Wells comes up with the idea of alternate histories as a basis for stories. There is a minor illustrator of adventure and fantasy pulps, Adolf Hitler, who has a brief cameo appearance. The Kaiser remarks that his grandsons like to read that sort of stuff.

Bobbs-Merrill Company 52078-8, 1978

Ace 02274-X, March 1979

Berman, Ruth, "Visit to a Weird Planet Revisited"

During a filming of an episode of Star Trek the actors William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy and DeForest Kelley are transported to a parallel universe in which their television show is reality. They bluff their way through an encounter with Klingons until Commander Scott can swap them back for his original officers.

Star Trek: The New Voyages (edited by Sondra Marshak & Myrna Culbreath), Bantam 02719, March 1976 (pp.83–96)

Bernsen, Albert  pseudonym of Al Bernstein

Bernstein, Al [as by Bernsen, Albert], "Author Unknown"

An agent receives an excellent book offering solutions to the world's problems. However, publishers reject it because they believe it is not commercial. It turns out that the author is God

Fantastic Adventures 12:7 July 1950 (pp.126–)

Bertholf, Bret, "Alfred Bester is Alive and Living in Winterset, Iowa"

This is quite a complex story. The protagonist may be an old man in a nursing home or a computer virus self-aware but unaware of its status. His female visitor, Jemmy Marko, may be the his daughter or the wife of the programmer who created the virus—or both. The old man was a science fiction fan who attended an SF convention in New York in 1957 and there met a group of fans who lived in New Jersey, publishing a fanzine. All, including himself, wanted to get published but this only happened for one of them. They tear apart his story in which they are embedded. The characters, viruses, etc. are named for characters in Bester's stories: the protagonist is named Stuart Buchanan after a boy in a Bester story who could make his wishes come true. "The virus is administered with codes and string passages that make reference to the work of Alfred Bester."

The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction 105:3 September 2003 (pp.8-37)

bes Shahar, Eluki see also Rosemary Edghill

bes Shahar, Eluki, "Is Your Coworker a Space Alien?"

The author, a science fiction writer, while working for a tabloid newspaper in New York City, finds out that the weird employee Clifford Mutton-Jones is not a space alien—but that she might be one herself. This comes to naught as she gets her stories published.

Alien Pregnant by Elvis (edited by Esther M. Friesner & Martin H. Greenberg), DAW Books 0-88677-610-4 (#955), June 1994 (pp.117-129)

bes shahar, eluki, "My Object All Sublime"

Wynton Marchand, SF fan and SF editor at Bedlam Books, is tired of all the attention and display space being given to Star Trek books. He decides to use his friend's time machine to return to 1966 and "invent" the VCR. This means the trekkies will tape all episodes and spend their time watching them over and over again instead of writing the fanzines that caused the spinoffs. However, upon his return he finds his actoins forced these fans into writing relationship stories and now romance is 84% of the marketplace.

Alternate Skiffy (edited by Mike Resnick and Patrick Nielsen Hayden), The Wildside Press 1-880448-54-8, December 1997 [dated 1996] (pp.98-108)

Bester, Alfred, "The Unseen Blushers"

A group of pulp writers meet regularly on Tuesdays for lunch and talk. One day the narrator brings along a young fellow named Dugan. He tells some stories that are rejected as not credible by the group. It turns out that he is a literature student from the future who has come back to get records of a current writer who is regarded as highly as Shakespeare. It is one of the people at the table. It gradually dawns upon the narrator that he is the writer.

Astonishing Stories 3:4 June 1942 (pp.84-89)

Bethke, Bruce, "It Came from the Slushpile"

Rex Manly is editor of Stupefying Stories.  On the first day that two college interns are reading the slushpile, some monster comes into existence there. Whether it was created by a critical mass of terrible manuscripts or merely mimicked an unsolicited manuscript will never be known. Following the advice of his science editor Phil Jennings, Rex prints up the ultimate rejection slip and pastes them onto each manuscript except for one entitled "It Came from the Slushpile."

Aboriginal Science Fiction 1:5 July-August 1987 (pp.56-62)

Aboriginal Science Fiction: 88 Anthology (edited by Charles Ryan), Absolute Entertainment 3198, 1988

Swashbuckling Editor Stories (edited by John Gregory Betancourt), The Wildside Press, October 1993; lettered hardcover 1-880448-21-1;

numbered hardcover 1-880448-20-3; trade paperback 1-880448-22-X (pp.11-22)

Bethke, Bruce, "One Evening in H. G.'s Drawing Room"

The H. G. of the title is H. G. Wells. The Time Traveler sends his small test vehicle into the future causing any number of problems in the time continua. The group of Britons are visited by a large number of time travelers who come via Tardis—the fourth Doctor, Professor Peabody (for once without Sherman and the Wayback Machine), the dwarves from Time Bandits, Jim DiGriz (Harry Harrison), Martin Padway (L. Sprague de Camp), Bill Pilgrim (Kurt Vonnegut), dinosaur hunters (L. Sprague de Camp), and Jherek Carnelian (Michael Moorcock). Not making the trip are the U.S.S. Nimitz (Martin Caidin) and the Snakes and Spiders of the Change Wars (Fritz Leiber). After they leave the topic turns to Martian invasion whereupon one from the television version of The Martian Chronicles (Ray Bradbury) appears threatening lawsuits for libel.

Amazing Stories 60:3 March 1986 (pp.91-94)

Bischoff, David joint author with John DeChancie

Bischoff, David, "The Big Nap"

In the 24th century Campbell Pohl edits Mandible Chomping Sci-Fi Retro Compu-Mag.  Through contact with an alien fan and would-be writer—he has submitted "Star Warts"—Pohl obtains custody of an alien artifact. This artifact takes him back in time to the mid-20th century where they will edit a science fiction magazine INCREDIBLE: Stories of Spicy Imagination.

Swashbuckling Editor Stories (edited by John Gregory Betancourt), The Wildside Press, October 1993; lettered hardcover 1-880448-21-1; numbered hardcover 1-880448-20-3; trade paperback 1-880448-22-X (pp.109-128)

Bischoff David, "Cam Shaft"

Jack Dillon is a writer of a tabloid American Galaxy. His paper has sent him on a repairing lease to England accompanied by his friend Flowers Brown. They go to Cambridge where Brown wishes to attend the local Blake's 7 convention. It turns out that the local club is run by university professor Jacob Alucard—actually Count Dracula. At first Dracula thinks Dillon is a government agent but, after learning the truth, releases him with a deadly warning.

Dark Destiny III: Children of Dracula (edited by Edward E. Kramer), White Wolf Publishing 1-56504-813-X, October 1996 (pp.299-331)

Bischoff, David and Smith, Dean Wesley, "Nevermore"

On the Riverworld, Poe joins a publishing house set up by Edgar Rice Burroughs and Johann Gutenberg. Other writers involved are Robert E. Howard, H. P. Lovecraft, Lester Dent (a.k.a. Kenneth Robeson), and Frederick Faust (a.k.a. Max Brand). After defeating the attempt by Hitler and Goebbels to take over the printing house for propaganda use, Poe dies once again, this time secure that his work has meaning.

Quest to Riverworld (edited by Philip José Farmer) Questar 0-446-36270-0, August 1993 (pp185-215)

Bishop, Michael, "Rogue Tomato"

Philip K. [Dick] awakes to find that he is now a Mars-sized tomato orbiting a red star. He grows and is then eaten by a horde of metallic insects back to his original size. Twelve of the insects tow him back to Earth where he captures the Moon and prepares to deliver some sort of message to mankind.

New Dimensions 5, (edited by Robert Silverberg), Harper & Row 013870-X, April 1975 (pp.84-99)

Science Fiction Book Club, June 1975

Harper Perennial, April 1976

Hunger for Horror, (edited by Robert Adams, Martin H. Greenberg, & Pamela Crippen Adams), DAW 266-4 (UE2266, No. 739), March 1988 (pp. 217-230)

Welcome to Reality: The Nightmares of Philip K. Dick, (edited by Uwe Anton), Broken Mirrors Press 4-2, 1991 [limited signed edition]; 5-0, 1991 [trade edition] (pp.71-79)

Bishop, Michael, The Secret Ascension

This is an alternate universe in which Richard Nixon is in his fourth presidential term. The SF author, Philip K. Dick has just died. However, Dick reappears in Georgia at a psychiatrist's office. The doctor's husband is an SF fan.

Tor 93031-3, November 1987; 53157-4, July 1989

Grafton 20151-3, November 1988 [as Philip K. Dick is Dead, Alas]

Bishop, Michael, "Tacatti's Tomorrow"

This is another story about the science fiction field with no fantastic elements. Gil Vannoy has dragged his leman Bev Jefferds to a science fiction convention in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Gil has told Bev he wants to meet author Nathan Tacatti (based upon Philip K. Dick, in part); Bev, having attended other conventions, has her doubts. Gil, by a combination of sycophancy and emotional blackmail, gets to share breakfast with Tacatti (at a McDonald's). There, a racially-oriented incident occurs and Gil thinks he has handled it properly but Tacatti does not and tells him so in a note attached to an autographed book. Gil cannot accept the educational rebuke and destroys the book.

The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction 70:6 June 1986 (pp.142-155)

Bishop, Michael, "The Windows in Dante's Hell"

In the domed urban nucleus of Atlanta Almira Longhope has died at 107. When the agents from the Biomonitor Agency go to her rooms they find the living room has been fitted out as the bridge of a starship, the Sojourner II.  The older man believes she has wasted her entire life on a fantasy; the younger one—a boy, really—knows that this is not the case.

Orbit 12  (edited by Damon Knight) Putnam, 1973; SFBC 5931 D40, 1973 (pp.28-45)

Time of Passage, (edited by Joseph Olander & Martin H. Greenberg), Taplinger, 1978

Catacomb Years, Berkley Putnam 12255-9, January 1979

Berkley 04050-X, February 1980

Bisson, Terry, "Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?"

Caleb is out of work during the Great Depression. His only possession is an issue of Thrilling Future Tales. A man from the future gives him a dime; Caleb steals his portable time machine. He finds that his face is on the dime. He goes to the future—which is a 1930s utopia—but decides to return to his present to do whatever is necessary to put his face on the coin. He comes to a bad end and it is discovered that the dime shows the face of the person who holds it.

Golden Age SF: Tales of a Bygone Future (edited by Eric T. Reynolds), Hadley Rille Books, 2006 0-9785148-0-7 (pp.65-76)

Bisson, Terry, GalaxyQuest

The TV series GalaxyQuest has been off the air for 20 years. Still, there are conventions (if you want to believe this has parallels in Star Trek, that's up to you. An alien race, threatened by evil conquerors, mistakes the shows for "historical documents?" and brings the crew on board their space ship—a working replica of the show's NSEA Protector—to defeat this enemy. This is the novelization of the film.

Ace 0-441-00718-X, November 1999

Bisson, Terry, "The Hugo Nominee" [Play]

One of the passengers on an airboat in the Everglades is a SF writer in a wheelchair—was he faking a handicap to get a parking space?. He is a Hugo nominee and quite obnoxious about it. The rest of the passengers find it necessary to chop off his unfeeling(?) legs to hold off wolves. This was scheduled to be performed at ConJose, the 2002 World Science Fiction Convention in San Jose, California. Because of a time mix-up the original cast was at supper when it was performed.

Interzone 180 June–July 2002 (pp.40-47)

Bloch, Robert, "The End of Science-Fiction"

The narrator of the story is Robert Bloch. He is attending the Tenth World Science Fiction Convention in New York where Richard Ormsbee is the Guest of Honor (actually the Tenth World Science Fiction Convention was held in Chicago and Hugo Gernsback was the Guest of Honor). In a private meeting Ormsbee tells Bloch of his fear that aliens are using ideas from SF in their planned conquest of Earth. Specifically, they have stolen his copy of The Whisperers in Darkness (by H. P. Lovecraft). At the convention Ormsbee makes an insulting speech and it is found afterwards that his brain and spinal column had been replaced by an alien construct. SF is now to be banned and all extant materials to be destroyed.

Other Worlds Science Stories 3:6 October 1951 (pp.84-96)

Bloch, Robert, "ETFF"

An alien comes to Earth in West Virginia. It is studying Earth pop culture and its friends have banded together in the Extra-Terrestrial Fan Fund to raise money for the trip. It hitches a ride with fans to the Worldcon in Connecticut. There, in a series of picaresque adventures, it meets many fans and pros and examines many of the subfandoms. The alien decides to attend next year's Worldcon. The story is filled with many dreadful puns.

Odyssey 1:1 Spring 1976 (pp.24-27; 66-72)

Fear and Trembling Tor 0-812-51585-4 March 1989

Bloch, Robert, "The Man Who Collected Poe"

The narrator, possibly Robert Bloch, meets a man in Baltimore who is the third generation of Poe collectors. It obtains that his grandfather had removed the corpse of Poe himself to the cellar of the Poe-esque mansion that he had built for that purpose. Now the grandson reveals that he, using rituals from the likes of De Vermis Mysteriis and Liber Eibon has called Poe back from the dead to continue writing. Unfortunately, the writing is more suited for the dead than for the living. In the throes of telling of Poe's hatred for his resurrector, the grandson starts a fire. Poe escapes and takes his tormentor into the flames with him in a singularly appropriate ending. See alos the homage "The Man Who Collected Barker" by Kim Newman.

Famous Fantastic Mysteries, October 1951 (pp. 98-)

Night's Yawning Peal, Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1952

Signet Y6025, August 1974 (pp.65-78) [not all the stories]

Bogey Men, Pyramid F-839, March 1963

Hauntings, (edited by Henry Mazzeo), Doubleday SFBC 2133 44K, 1968 (p.35-49)

The Man Who Called Himself Poe, (edited by Sam Moskowitz), Doubleday 1969

The Best of Robert Bloch, Ballantine, November 1977

Dmons & Other Disturbing Tales, (edited by Helen Hoke), Taplinger, February 1978

Top Fantasy, (edited by Josh Pachter), Dent 04659-4, June 1985

A Treasury of American Horror Stories, (edited by Frank D. McSherry, Martin H. Greenberg, & Charles G. Waugh), Crown Bonanza48075-1, 1985 (pp.267-278)

Chapter and Hearse: Suspense Stories About the World of Books, (edited by Marcia Muller and Bill Pronzini), Morrow 04184-1, 1985 (pp.47-64)

Final Reckonings: The Selected Stories of Robert Bloch, Volume 1, Underwood Miller 055-X, March 1988

Haunted America, (edited by Marvin Kaye), Guild America 15993, 1990 (pp.123-137)

Bloch, Robert, "The Return of Lefty Feep"

This is a series of in-group jokes and references with Robert Bloch talking to Lefty Feep of infamous memory. Feep had been attending Solacon, the 1958 World Science Fiction Convention. Feep recounts his adventures to the narrator.

Out of My Head, NESFA Press 30-7 [trade]; 87-0 [slipcased] February 1986 (pp.119-124]

Bloch, Robert, "The Shadow from the Steeple"

This is the final story in the series that began with "The Shambler from the Stars" (Robert Bloch) and continued with "The Haunter of the Dark" (H. P. Lovecraft). After Blake's death his friend, Edmund Fiske, came to Providence to discover the details but was dead-ended. Finally, after fifteen years, he faces the doctor who threw the Shining Trapezohedron into Narragansett Bay and, in doing so, became subject to the Haunter whose name is Nyarlathotep. In this guise he has been helping to build nuclear weapons. Fiske dies of shock when part of the truth is revealed. [Tarleton Fiske was one of the pseudonyms of Robert Bloch.]

Weird Tales, August 1950

Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos, (edited by August Derleth), Arkham House, 1969

Grafton 20334-3, September 1988 (pp. 292-315)

Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos, Volume II (edited by August Derleth), Beagle 95124, August 1971 (pp.43-68)

Ballantine 03227-6, April 1973 (pp.43-68)

Whispers from Beyond: Bloch and Bradbury, (edited by Kurt Singer) Peacock Press 7202, 1972 (pp.5-13)

Sphere 17140, 1970 [anthology retitled Fever Dream and Other Fantasies ]

Mysteries of the Worm, Zebra 815-1, August 1981

Final Reckonings: The Selected Stories of Robert Bloch, Volume 1, Underwood Miller 055-X, March 1988

Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos, (edited by James Turner), Arkham House, 1990

Bloch, Robert, "The Shambler from the Stars"

Robert Bloch is a horror writer but is discouraged by the mundanity of much of what he writes. He begins to track down true horror and finally obtains a copy of De Vermis Mysteriis (one of the Great Books of Lovecraft's Cthulhu Mythos). He takes it east to his friend in Providence, Rhode Island - H. P. Lovecraft. Lovecraft is so unwise as to read one on the incantations. A Thing arrives from the stars, mangles his body, drinks his blood, and departs. Bloch burns the house. [This is the first of three connected stories - see Lovecraft, H. P., "The Haunter of the Dark" and Bloch, Robert, "The Shadow from the Steeple"]

Weird Tales, September 1935

The Opener of the Way, Arkham House, 1945 (pp. 248-257)

Spearman 006-6, April 1974

Horror-7, Belmont 90-275, 1963

Horwitz PB160, 1963

Four Square Books 1196, 1964, reprinted 1967

Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos, (edited by August Derleth), Arkham House, 1969

Mysteries of the Worm, Zebra 815-1, August 1981

Grafton 20334-3, September 1988 (pp. 254-264)

Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos, Volume II (edited by August Derleth), Beagle 95124, August 1971 (pp. 1-22)

Ballantine 03227-6, April 1973 (pp.1-12)

The House of the Hatchet, Panther T19, 1976 [11 stories from The Opener of the Way ]

Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos, (edited by James Turner), Arkham House, 1990

Bloch, Robert, "A Way of Life"

Following the next major world war, the only "organized" group of people left who trust one another are the science fiction fans. This story involves the nomination of the new president by one of the major parties, FAPA (the other being the NFFF). Many of Bloch's friends and much fannish legend have been incorporated herein. The inclusion of real SF people's names in stories is called "tuckerization" after Wilson 'Bob' Tucker who was infamous for it. Here Bloch does him one better.

Fantastic Universe, October 1956

The Fantastic Universe Omnibus, (edited by Hans Stefan Santesson), Prentice-Hall 1960 (pp.45-66)

Bogey Men, Pyramid, March 1963

Out of My Head,  NESFA Press 30-7, February 1986 [trade]; NESFA Press 87-0, February 1986 [boxed]

Blois, Ralph S., "The Fifth Novel"

[Internal evidence indicates that the title should have been "The Fiftieth Novel."  Author Jack Krebbins is working on his fiftieth genre novel (apparently horror). He turns off the computer to have dinner with his sister. However, the door will not open; the computer turns itself back on, the lights go off, and the last words typed on the screen happen to him.

Pirate Writings 3:3 [Fall] 1995

Bohnhoff, Maya Kaathryn, "Ask Arlen"

Qtzl, an alien, crashes on Earth. He sets up residence in a currently deserted cabin belonging to science fiction writer Stan Schell. In order to earn enough money to buy supplies to repair the ship (he could steal through the Internet, but finds this morally indefensible), he applies for a job as an advice columnist. His advice is somewhat skewed from human standards, but he becomes quite popular. In the interim, he acquires a taste for low-class literature—science fiction. Eventually, he winds up on the Tonight Show with Stan now fronting for him. Qtzl, his robot, and Stan must also deal with the unwanted attentions of UFO-enthusiast Kerwin Frees.

Analog Science Fiction and Fact 117:9 September 1997 (pp.14-51)

Bohnhoff, Maya Kaathryn, "The Devil His Due"

Herbert G. Wells (named after the SF author) is an unpublished writer of serious horror novels. In order to achieve fame and fortune he sells out to the devil. From that time, he becomes rich and famous as an author of cyber-shock novels. When the time comes to collect the devil reveals that his soul was of no use—the devil's payment was that Wells never wrote anything or did anything to better the world.

Amazing Stories 66:8 December 1991 (pp.37-43)

Bohnhoff, Maya Kaathryn, "Hobbits"

A marginal item. Karen, the mother of a small boy, Evan, is a science fiction writer (with some weird attitudes about the goodness of technologically advanced races). An alien spaceship has landed nearby secretly with the intention of taking samples—a child is just the right size. The augmented animal used as a collector does get into the child's bedroom but is destroyed by the noble family tomcat, Troll, in a very proper manner.

Analog Science Fiction - Science Fact 111:3 February 1991 (pp.102-111)

Bohnhoff, Maya Kaathryn, "Pipe Dreams"

Beckett Hodge is an expert in computer security working as a consultant for both industry and the government. He wants to be a published science fiction writer. He does not realize that one of Sefton Press' editors, Laurence Bourbon, very positive interest in his manuscript is a cover for a terrorist group that wants to penetrate the Department of Defense weapons security.

Analog Science Fiction and Fact 117:6 June 1997 (pp.114-144)

Bond, Nelson, "The Abduction of Abner Greer"

Would-be science fiction writer Abner Greer is kidnapped into the twenty-fifth century by a pair of greedy entrepreneurs looking for twentieth-century humor to sell. He has none but does have an envelope with a rare stamp on it. When he is returned it is to the offices of Tomorrow Stories where he relates his adventure to the editor. The editor, believing it to be desirable story asks him to write it up. Alas, he transforms it into a space opera that is promptly rejected.

Blue Book Magazine 1941

Science-Fiction Carnival (edited by Fredric Brown and Mack Reynolds), Shasta December 1953, Jan 1954

Bantam A1615, June 1957 (pp.157-167)

Bonnano, Margaret Wander, Preternatural

Karen Rohmer Guerreri is a science fiction author writing her first non-spinoff novel, entitled Preternatural.  She has previously written SpaceSeeker books; SpaceSeeker was a television show. The new books inspiration appears to be alien jellyfish (the S.oteri). Karen believes there are her imagination but others, since the time of Akhenaton, have been in contact with them (or it). There are very blatant parallels between SpaceSeekers and Star Trek and its principal actors (Bonnano has written a number of Star Trek books). A successful screenplay deal is worked out; when the book is published it is generally ignored, except for a killer review in Locus.

Tor 0-312-86209-1, December 1996

Boston, Bruce, "Ten Things Not to Say When You Meet A Famous SF Writer" [Verse]

The contents are exactly what the title says—a list of obnoxious remarks.

Asimov's Science Fiction 25:10&11 October/November 2001 (p.47)

Boucher, Anthony also wrote as H. H. Holmes

Boucher, Anthony "The Model of a Science Fiction Editor" [Verse]

In a parody of the patter song from The Pirates of Penzance, the author explains how and why he is an exemplar of his craft.

The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction 5:1 July 1953 (pg.61)

Boucher, Anthony, "Pelagic Spark"

L. Sprague de Camp, Lt., USNR, is disturbed by all the people who believe the predictions of Nostradamus. He writes a predictive limerick for a debunking article [this article was actually published in Esquire, December 1942]. However, in the next century, the existence of this limerick causes de Camp's great-grandson, Lyman Harding, to make it come true.

Astounding Science Fiction 31:4 June 1943 (pp.32-43)

Boucher, Anthony (as H. H. Holmes), Rocket to the Morgue [Mystery]

This is a murder mystery involving rocket experimentation in southern California. Many of the supporting characters are actual SF writers under other names. The Mañana Literary Society, based upon an actual group in southern California at the time the novel was written. The dedication reads "For The Mañana Literary Society and in particular for Robert Heinlein and Cleve Cartmill."  In this book author Joe Henderson has a story "Time Tunnel" with a villainess Storm Darroway. In the May and June 1965 issues of Amazing Poul Anderson published The Corridors of Time with Storm Darroway; the book version (Doubleday, 1965) is dedicated to Anthony Boucher.

Duell, Sloan & Pearce, 1942 [as by H. H. Holmes]

Dell 591, 1952

Pyramid X1681, October 1967; reprinted N3567, January 1975

4 Novels, Zomba Books 29-7, 1984 [trade paperback] (pp. 323-468)

Zomba Books 30-0, 1984 [hardcover]

International Polygonics Ltd. 82-X, May 1988

Boucher, Anthony, "The Star Dummy"

Paul Peters, a ventriloquist, rescues an alien from the zoo. The alien is looking for his girl friend, who has landed on Earth. She turns out to be with Marcia Judd, a science fiction writer. Judd is also the friend of Joe Henderson, who appeared in Rocket to the Morgue.

Fantastic 1:2 Fall 1952 (pp.46-60)

Omnibus of Science Fiction (edited by Groff Conklin), Crown Publishers, 1952 (pp. 178-189)

Fantastic Science Fiction - Fantasy 18:6 August 1969 (pp.112-126)

Boucher, Anthony, "Transfer Point"

Far in the future Earth has been invaded by aliens who look like yellow bands. They have used the allergenic gas agnoton to destroy humanity. Only three people survive--the scientist Kirth-Labbery, his beautiful, but stupid daughter Lavra, and her literary boy friend Vyrko. Vyrko, read old pulps (especially Galaxy and Surprising); he is amazed by the detailed accurate predictions of Norbert Holt. Vyrko is accidentally thrown back in time by Lavra (who is now pregnant with twins). In the 1950s, Vyrko has no skills, so he turns to writing history as science fiction under the name Norbert Holt. He becomes a success—convention guest of honor and president of the Science Fiction Writers of America (SCWA—go figure; this is changed to the Fantasy Writers of America in the anthology version). Vyrko has an affair with Ms. Manning Stern, editor of Suprising, but commits suicide to break the time loop. Appearing in cameo roles are Joe Henderson, Matt Duncan, and Austin Carter from Rocket to the Morgue.

Galaxy Science Fiction 1:2 November 1950 (pp.54-74)

Adventures in Tomorrow (edited by Kendell Foster Crossen), Belmont B75-215, February 1968 (pp.208-228)

Bourne, Mark, "Like No Business I Know"

Laura Lundy plays the role of Xora on the TV show Xora: Avenger Priestess. This show has become popular even in Faerie where it is resented by Puck. Puck comes to our world and foments strikes whoch could cause the cancellation of the show. Other inhabitants of Faerie bring Laura through a magic window to produce a special edition of the show—on location.

Did You Say Chicks?!, (edited by Esther M. Friesner), Baen Books 0-671-87867-0, February 1998 (pp.279-301)

Bova, Ben, "Inspiration"

A time traveler goes back to convince Albert Einstein to continue his study of physics in spite of Lord Kelvin's assertions that everything is known; otherwise, the futures that will occur are quite bleak. To do this he inspires H. G. Wells to write his time travel novel and then brings the three of them together in Linz, Austria.

The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction 86:4 April 1994 (pp6-17)

Bova, Ben, "Kelvin Throop Strikes Back"

This is ostensibly an editorial. Kelvin Throop sneaks into the offices of Condé Nast (then publishers of Analog ) and answers letters from readers and would-be writers as the actual editor longs to do but cannot.

Analog Science Fiction - Science Fact 95:8 August 1975 (pp.5-7,177-178)

Viewpoint, NESFA Press 14-5 (trade); 79-X (finebound), February 1977 (pp.81-87)

Bova, Ben, The Starcrossed

This is a hilarious takeoff on the unsuccessful TV series The Starlost.  Ben Bova and Harlan Ellison were heavily involved in its early phases until their concepts were completely hollywoodized to inanity. The New England Science Fiction Association is mentioned by name and two of its members, Joe Ross and Suford Lewis, are there by description.

Chilton 6072, October1975

Pyramid A4501, December 1976 [The man on this book cover bears a striking resemblance to Harlan Ellison; art by Vincent Di Fate]

Jove M5133, April 1979

Ace 78046-6, October 1984

Tor 53231-7, June 1988

Bowker, Richard, Dover Beach

In post-holocaust America one of the minor characters, Art, runs a bookstore. In addition to selling pornography, he collects old novels and stories that were written dealing with the post-holocaust world such as David Brin's The Postman, Walter M. Miller's A Canticle for Leibowitz, etc.

Bantam Spectra 26810-4, October 1987 (Chapter 9, pp. 56-59)

Bowman, Alison, "The Copywriter"

The protagonist is a PR flack who is hired by the Intergalactic Space Alien Federation to help in the conquest of Earth. He finally decides against it as one of the aliens' plan is to eat people. He decides to write up the interactions as a science fiction memoir—sure to make a big profit.

The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction 102:4 April 2002 (pp.131-135)

Boyd, Lyle G., "Verb Sap?"

Simon Esterhazy is an unsuccessful fantasy writer. Sure that there is a conspiracy to keep his works from being published, he makes a deal with a demon so that " my prose I am transmogrified." The demon keeps its word to the letter of the contract and Simon dies as a result of inappropriate adverbs in his purple prose.

The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction 11:3 September 1956 (pp.86-91)

Bradbury, Ray, "The Concrete Mixer" [new]

Ettil Vrye is a Martian who reads illegal Earth science fiction magazines. These convince him that the planned Martian invasion of Earth will end in disaster. Forced to enlist, he comes to Earth. The Earth people welcome the Martians but foil the invasion using the same manner as the ancient Chinese.

Thrilling Wonder Stories 34:1 April 1949 (pp.94-)

The Illustrated Man SFBC Doubleday 1951 (190-211)

Bradbury, Ray, Death is a Lonely Business [Mystery]

Venice, California, 1949. The protagonist is a young writer of fantasy and mystery fiction. Although the events are fictitious, the unnamed writer is clearly based upon Bradbury himself. There are a series of deaths - each, perhaps, by itself, not unusual but taken together they form a most unpleasant pattern. However, it is only the writer who is sufficiently enmeshed in the life of this community to see the connections. He is able to convince Elmo Crumley, detective and aspiring novelist, of the situation. The story often verges on fantasy but there is enough of the fantastic in everyday life.

Franklin Library, 1985

Knopf 54702-0, October 1985

Grafton 12830-5, May 1986; 06877-5, January 1988

Bantam 26447-8, February 1987

Bradbury, "The Exiles"

The past writers of Earth's fantasy stories make their last stand on Mars. But the antiseptic crew has brought the last copies of these fantasy books to be burned there and complete their destruction.

Maclean's Magazine, 15 September 1949 [as "The Mad Wizards of Mars"]

The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, Winter-Spring 1950 (pp. 74-88)

Beyond Time and Space, (ed. by August Derleth), Pellegrini Cudahy, 1950

The Illustrated Man, Doubleday, February 1951 (pp. 131-146)

Rupert Hart-Davis, 1952; reprinted 63633-5, June 1977

Bantam 991, April 1952; reprinted as 1282, October 1954; F2588, 1963;

Pathfinder FP 127, August 1965; N3484, 1967; S4482, March 1969; N7112, 1972; Q2112, 1975;

11957-5, April 1978; 13247-4, 1980; 23096-4, August 1982; 25483-9, 1985

Corgi 1282, 1955; reprinted SS818, 1960; YS1349, 1963; GS7184, 1965; 09580-X, August 1974

Doubleday SFBC 1951 33K, October 1969; SFBC 1951 10M, April 1971

Panther 04359-4, June 1977

R is for Rocket, Doubleday, 1962

Bantam F2915, March 1965; Pathfinder FP 164, September 1966;

Pathfinder FP4078, 1968; Pathfinder HP4398, September 1969;

Pathfinder SP5748, 1970; N7988, 1973; 02704, 1975; 10367, September 1976; 11931-1, April 1978;

14303, 1981; 20548-X, June 1981; 23410-2, January 1983; 25040-X, 1984;

Spectra 25040-X, 1985

The Eureka Years, (edited by Annette P. McComas), Bantam, June 1982

Ray Bradbury: Fahrenheit 451, The Illustrated Man, Dandelion Wine, The Golden Apples of the Sun, The Martian Chronicles, Heinemann 023-1, 1987

Bradbury, Ray, A Graveyard for Lunatics [Mystery]

This is a sequel to Death is a Lonely Business.  In 1954, a writer of mysteries and SF is hired by Maximus Films. He will be working with his friend and special effects wizard, Roy Holdstrom. One of the writer's ideas is to present the film from the monster's viewpoint. This was done, in part, in Bradbury's script for It Came from Outer Space.  Many strange (even for Hollywood) events occur - Roy is apparently murdered and the writer asks his detective friend Elmo Crumley for assistance. The ending is very satisfying and astute readers will have seen it long before the book's characters do.

Alfred Knopf 57877-5, 1990

Bradbury, Ray, "Last Rites"

Harrison Cooper has spent decades building a time machine. Now he uses it to visit those authors who were neglected in their lifetimes, but who now are revered. One of them is Poe.

The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction 87:6 December 1994 (pp.8-16)

Bradbury, Ray, "Quid Pro Quo"

Ray Bradbury has built a time machine in his attic and doesn't know what to do about it. Later, when he is signing books in Santa Barbara, he recognizes an old man as Simon Cross. He is enraged because Cross had been a great writer in his youth but had stopped after serving in Korea. He has wasted his gift. Bradbury drags him to the time machine and takes him back forty years to see the young Cross. The younger version is so upset by what has (will?) happen(ed) that he strikes and kills the older version. He promises Bradbury that he will not stop writing. Bradbury removed the body into the future. [This story gave rise to one by Eyal Teler which tells it from Cross's viewpoint.]

The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction 99:4&5 October/November 2000 (pp.198-208)

Bradbury, Ray, "Usher II"

The Moral Climates people destroyed most of the fantasy writing, films, etc, on earth in the Great Burning of 1975. Now, on Mars, Mr. Stendahl builds a haunted house and arranges to kill a group of these people after the murders in the works of Edgar Allan Poe. Then, he burns the house to the ground. In this he is assisted by Pikes, the last and greatest of the horror film actors.

Thrilling Wonder Stories, April 1950 (pp. 50-) [as "Carnival of Madness"]

Martian Chronicles, Doubleday, April 1950 (pp. 132-); 1958

Bantam 886, June 1951; 1261, 1954; A1885, 1959;  F2438, September 1962;H3243, March 1966;

S4843, 1970; N5613, July 1970; Pathfinder NP5613, October 1972; Q7900, 1973; X2440, 1976;

11945-1, April 1978; 13179-6, January 1980; 14774, 1981; 22968-0, October 1983;

Spectra 26363-3, 1987

Olivetti (limited edition), 1979

Doubleday SFBC 2150 T51, January 1979

Illustrated Man, Rupert Hart-Davis, 1952

Martian Chronicles [expanded], Time-Life, 1963

Doubleday 03862-3, 1973

Limited Editions Club, 1974

Heritage Press, 1975

Martian Chronicles [modified contents], Doubleday, June 1973

Ray Bradbury: Fahrenheit 451, The Illustrated Man, Dandelion Wine, The Golden Apples of the Sun, The Martian Chronicles,

Heinemann 023-1, 1987

Bredenberg, Jeff, "Imagine a Large-Breasted Woman..."

Mack, a writer, is sprung from prison where he is continually sedated for the crime of writing stories with unhappy endings. His benefactors want him to assassinate Roland T. Price whose company is taking over all publishing in New York. He is accompanied by pedantic copyeditors. When he performs his task, he finds that all is not as it seems.

The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction 86:2 February 1994 (pp.48-60)

Brennan, Joseph Payne & Grant, Donald M., Act of Providence

This is one of the Lucius Leffing supernatural detective stories. It occurs in Providence, Rhode Island in 1975 at the First World Fantasy Convention. Many SF, fantasy, and horror writers appear in the story. A kidnapping takes Leffing and Brennan beneath the streets of Providence on a Lovecraftian adventure.

Donald M. Grant, Publisher, 1979

Brejcha, F. Alexander, "Examination"

Derek is a science fiction writer with two published novels. He also has multiple sclerosis, impotence, and a telepathic visitation from an alien, Tiok. Tiok is investigating Earth with reference to possible future trade. Although he is not supposed to make contact with the Earthman he does so. This leads to Tiok's passing of his examination and of Derek revisiting some personal decisions and improving his marriage. It also gives him plot outlines for four new novels.

Analog Science Fiction - Science Fact 110:12 November 1990 (pp.90-101)

Bretnor, Reginald (as Grendel Briarton), "Though Time and Space With Ferdinand Feghoot!"

This details Feghoot's pun-filled day as the first editor of Weird Tales.

Weird Tales 50:4, Winter 1988/1989 (pg.71)

Brewster, Kent, "Altercon"

The protagonist is attending the 1993 All-System Speculative Fiction Convention at the Alioto Center in San Francisco. Many aliens and off-Earth humans are there. At a party, he and a friend get involved with AlterCon—what he thinks is a hoax bid for a set of alternate universes. They wind up at ConFrancisco, the 1993 World Science Fiction Convention in our universe. They plan on selling other universe materials in the hucksters' room in order to get funds to go to the 1995 convention in Glasgow and hook up with AlterCon again.

Galaxy 1:4 July/August 1994 (pp.35-41)

Briarton, Grendel pseudonym of Reginald Bretnor

Brin, David joint author with Gregory Benford

Brockmeier, Kevin, "The Green Children"

Celia, age seven, is the daughter of SF writer Christopher Brooks. One day she disappears without a trace. Christopher enters a world of fantasy in which Celia still exists. He writes various stories from the point of view of the people in the case. The particular story is set in the Middle Ages in which a green girl, who may be a time-traveling Celia or an alien finds a reasonable life.

The Truth About Celia, Pantheon 2003 0-375-42135-1

Broderick, Damien, Transmitters: An Imaginary Documentary, 1969-1984 [Mainstream]

This is not quite autobiographical but deals with Australian SF fandom, especially fanzine fandom. The Demolished Men club is a thinly disguised Nova Mob. The author claims that this is not a roman a clef. It is the third volume of "The Faustus Hexagram."

Melbourne: Ebony Press 0-9590655-0-4, September 1984

Brown, Eric, "The Blue Portal"

Two writers, Edward Vaughan and Jonathon Langham—contributors to The Monthly Scribe, a scientific romance magazine in England—are invited by their editor, Jasper Carnegie, to his country house. There he shows them a regularly appearing portal that he believes leads to other worlds. This proves to be true and they rescue one alien from a more unpleasant set. The story, set in Winter 1935, feels exactly right for the period.

Interzone 180 June-July 2002 (pp.6-21) part 1

Interzone 181 August 2002 (pp.41-54) part 2

Brown, Eric, "The Inheritors of Earth"

Parnell is a physicist from 2001 who returns to Holocene times to study the Neanderthals. He saves a young girl from the marauding "modern" men. However, they damage his vehicle and both of them crash in 1883. There, after a year, he finds Clarridge Woonton, a gentleman-experimenter and tells him of his plan to resettle the Neanderthals in 21st century depopulated Africa. His attempts at gaining assistance in London have come to the ears of H. G. Wells who considers him a menace to the established order of time. Parnell returns to his own time and finds a nuclear war has broken out. Although dying of radiation poisoning he returns to bring the Neanderthals into a far-distant future.

The Time-Lapsed Man and Other Stories, Pan 31366-5, 1990 (pp.151-216)

Brown, Fredric, "All Good BEMs"

Elmo Scott is a science fiction writer who is blocked. A group of aliens is temporarily stranded on Earth until they can grow a new ship. In the meantime, they take over bodies of animals including the writer's Doberman. One of the characteristics of intelligence is a sense of humor (including puns). As a parting gift for the hospitality they remove his block as well as his memory of the visit. He plans to write the story he has just lived.

Thrilling Wonder Stories 34:1 April 1949 (pp.124-)

From These Ashes (edited by Ben Yalow), Framingham: NESFA Press 1-886778-18-3, February 2001 (pp.275-282)

Brown, Fredric, Martians, Go Home

Luke Devereaux is a science fiction writer. One night while working on a writer's block there is a knock upon the door. It is a Martian who is a little green man and rude as all-get-out. About one billion of them have arrived on Earth with the aim of harassing, embarrassing, and annoying everyone. They also frighten animals — except cats, who ignore them. Luke finds that no one wants to read science fiction any more and he eventually goes back to his old profession of Western writing. Eventually, the Martians leave, for no explained reason, although many of the Earth's inhabitants believe they know. Luke estranged wife returns to him; he is very successful and achieves 1950s bliss. Everyone tries to remain on good behavior just in case it was our previous actions that drew the Martians here — no one wants them back.

Astounding Science Fiction 54:1 September 1954 (pp.9-55) [shorter version]

Dutton, November 1955

Dutton SFBC 165b, December 1955

Bantam A1546, December 1956

Ballantine 25314, September 1976

Del Rey 29853-5, January 1981

Baen 72120-8, May 1992

Martians and Madness (edited by Ben Yalow), NESFA Press, 1-886778-17-5, August 2002

Brown, Fredric, "Preposterous"

A young boy is chided for reading trash like Astounding .The world in which this occurs is one in which much science fiction has come to pass—the story occurs on a lunar colony, there is war with Mars, etc.

Angels and Spaceships Dutton, 1954 (pp. 149-151)

If This Goes On (edited by Charles Nuetzel), Book Company of America, 1965

14 Great Tales of ESP (edited by Idella Purnell Stone) Fawcett Gold Medal 1969

From These Ashes: The Complete Short SF of Fredric Brown (edited by Ben Yalow), NESFA Press 1-886778-18-3 February 2001

Brown, Fredric, What Mad Universe

A science fiction editor Keith Winton is, through a rocket crash, transferred to a universe that is the wish fulfillment of one of his more avid readers. At one point Brown lovingly recreates the archetypal letter that was received by those publications.

Startling Stories, September 1948 [short version]

Dutton, 1949; September 1949

Bantam 835, November 1950; 1253, September 1954; 10336-9, November 1978

Boardman, 1951; 154, 1954

Pennyfarthing Press 00-1, November 1978

Nelson Doubleday SFBC 5814, March 1981

Easton Press, 1986

Grafton 07163-6, August 1987

Martians and Madness (edited by Ben Yalow), NESFA Press, 1-886778-17-5, August 2002

Brown, Molly, "Agents of Darkness"

Martha Carson works for the John Winters Literary Agency. She discovers and develops a writer, Count Henry Vladimir, who has written Confessions of a Vampire.  It turns out that this is not a novel, but an autobiography. In order to keep her percentage Martha must become a vampire. This procedure is a reversal of writers' traditional view of agents as bloodsuckers.

Interzone 64 October 1992 (pp37-43)

Brown, Peter Carter pseudonym of Alan Geoffrey Yates

Brown, Rich, "Dear Ted"

In 1983, author Rich Brown writes a letter to editor Ted White explaining why he cannot fulfill a request for a 3,500-word story. It is known that his name on the cover would boost the circulation of Fantastic by at least 10,000 for that issue. It seems that he had been receiving manuscripts returned to Rich Brown in an alternate universe at an earlier time period (pre-World War II). He edited and retyped these and submitted them for sale. This gained him his reputation. He is now becoming an editor as the alternate Rich Brown is finally selling his stories.

Fantastic 22:1 October 1972 (pp.93-100)

Brunner, John, "Taking Her Time"

Celia Compton has met Adam Lord—a time vampire. He gets younger by stealing her memories. One of the major events is her attendance at a science fiction convention.

Weird Tales 307 Summer 1993 (pp33-42)

Bryant, Edward, "giANTS"

Accidents at a Brazilian nuclear center cause a change in the army ants - specifically between their foraging and static phases, eliminating the latter. Reporter Layne Bridgewell discovers that Professor Paul Chavez is involved with the New Mexico Project (which, by the way, is in Wyoming). The project is working on a virus-borne mutagen to increase the size of these ants to a point where they will collapse (cube-square law). The Professor is obsessed with the old science fiction film Them in which giant ants are created as a result of an atomic bomb explosion. A copy of the film has been dubbed in Portuguese and shipped to Brasilia.

Analog Science Fiction/Science Fact 99:8 August 1979 (pp.68-83)

Best Science Fiction of the Year (1979) Ninth Annual, (ed. by Gardner Dozois), Dell 11232-X, August 1980

Wyoming Sun, Jelm Mountain Press 15-X, October 1980

Nebula Winners 15, (edited by Frank Herbert), Harper & Row, April 1981; Bantam, March 1983

Particle Theory, Timescape Pocket Books 43107-2, October 1981

Budrys, Algis, "First to Serve"

This is introduced by a letter from SF author Vic Heywood to Leonard Stein, editor of Infinity in which he says there will be some new H. E. Wood (apparently a pseudonym) stories. The story is ostensibly about robotic research performed by Heywood while associated with the military in 1974 (word rates are 3¢/word—this does not place much restriction on when the story is set, alas).

Astounding Science Fiction 53:3 May 1954

The Unexpected Dimension Ballantine 388K, 1960

The Metal Smile (ed. by Damon Knight), Belmont 1968

Space Mail, Vol. II (ed. by Isaac Asimov, Martin H. Greenberg, and Charles G. Waugh), Fawcett, 1982

Isaac Asimov's Wonderful Worlds of Science Fiction #9: Robots (ed. by Isaac Asimov, Martin H. Greenberg & Charles G. Waugh, NAL Signet 0-451-15926-8, 1989 (pp. 227-244)

Entertainment (edited by Rick Katze and Anthony R. Lewis), NESFA Press 1-886778-05-1

Bunnell, John, "The Masque of the Red Pencil"

Stuart Cameron has just been told by his agent that Ace wants four more volumes of the shared-world anthology Tales of Descenium.  However, the authors believed that the volume he is editing was the last and killed off many of the major characters. Cameron must enter Descenium, armed with his red pencil, and resurrect them. This annoys Death but Death knows that Cameron must now face the wrath of the authors whose work he has changed.

Swashbuckling Editor Stories (edited by John Gregory Betancourt), The Wildside Press, October 1993; lettered hardcover 1-880448-21-1; numbered hardcover 1-880448-20-3; trade paperback 1-880448-22-X (pp.79-82)

Bunnell, John C., "The Pirates of Capella"

Sometime in the 21st century 900 science fiction professionals have gathered at Epcot/L-5 for the annual Nebula Awards and announcement of the new Grand Master (possibly Joss Wheedon). Two aliens arrive disguised as Giles and Buffy. They claim the attendees are in danger from one of their criminals. It turns out that they are the criminals but their crime is that of distributing Earth SF without paying for syndication rights. The other alien pays for the licensing and takes the criminals back under guard.

Artemis Magazine 8 Winter 2003 (pp.19-24)

Bunnell, John C., "The Ultimate Compliment"

Earl Heathcliff is an SF writer, mostly of the Star Crusaders series. He sells his soul to the devil (Azrael, to be specific) in return for a rave review from him nemesis on the Washington Post Book World, Fiona Gray. When nothing Hell can do can entice her to praise his work, Azrael sends Earl to workshops to improve his writing. His new novel Galaxy's Heart, causes Gray's demise with unhappy results for both Earl and Azrael.

Deals With the Devil (edited by Mike Resnick, Martin H. Greenberg & Loren D. Estleman), DAW Books 0-88677-623-6 (#965), October 1994 (pp.109-116)

Burgess, Anthony, The End of the World News

When Earth is about to be impacted by an asteroid, Lynx, programs are set up to launch spaceships to preserve the human race. One of those initially selected is Valentine Brodie who teaches science fiction at the University of Westchester. He is also the author of Desirable Sight, Eyelid and Eyelid, Cuspclasp and Flukefang, Maenefa the Mountain, and The White and the Walk of the Morning.

Hutchinson 0-08-150540-2, 1982

McGraw-Hill 0-07-008965-5, March 1983

Penguin 0-14-006746-9, May 1984; 0-14-006616

Burke, John, "The Right Ending"

Martin Paget, horror story writer, is autographing books. One of the women claims he is writing her story. It turns out she is the person his wife could have been had he not written her out of existence. As expected, he dies in an auto crash with her at his side.

Time Out: Net Books 9, 1997;

The Mammoth Book of Best New Horror 9 (edited by Stephen Jones), Carroll & Graf 0-7867-0585, 1998 (pp.101-107)

Burns, Cliff, "Printed Matter"

Written as a series of letters between Russell Quentin Hewitt (bibliophile in Sawich Island, British Columbia) and Stanley Schaefer (bookseller in Arkham, California) in the period 1996 to 1997. The books in the catalogue get more and more deviant and finally Hewitt tries to end the correspondence but it is too late; Shaefer has found out his location.

On Spec 16:1 Spring 2004 (pp.6-20)

Burroughs, Edgar Rice, Tarzan and the Lion Man

Hollywood comes to Africa to shoot a "Tarzan" film on location. When the company is bedeviled by the usual problems of cannibals, gorillas, and the like it is up to the real Tarzan to save them. At the end, Tarzan visits Hollywood and is cast in a bit part as a white hunter in a Tarzan movie. He is not cast as Tarzan because he does not look the part. When he saves the leading man from being killed by the "tame" lion, he is fired for destroying valuable studio property.

Liberty 11 November 1933 ff. [9-part serial]

Burroughs 1934

Goulden 1950

Ace F-212, 1963

Ballantine 1964

Four Square Books 1965

Burstein, Michael A., "Cosmic Corkscrew"

The narrator is sent back in time to recover a copy of the one lost Isaac Asimov story, "Cosmic Corkscrew," after it has been rejected so no changes will be made to the time line. However, the narrator has other plans and resets the time machine for a few days earlier, to 20 June 1938. After talking with the young Asimov and getting a copy, he resets Isaac's memory to prevent disruption. Then, he sends the copy back to his time, but decides to stay in 1938 and live through the Golden Age of Science Fiction.

Analog Science Fiction and Fact 118:6 June 1998 (pp.32-37)

Burstein, Michael A., "Heisenberg's Magazine"

Michael Burstein is meeting Stan Schmidt in the new offices of Analog. Stan comments on how things seem to have disappeared in the new office. He tries to take Michael to lunch at an Argentine restaurant that has disappeared; so has the payphone where he was going to call and check the address. Michael jokes about uncertainty and Stan suggests he write it as a "Probability Zero" story. Michael agrees and says he can write his friends into the story. Stan says to be careful or people will bug Michael to be put into recursive stories, especially Tony Lewis. The payphone and restaurant reappear. During the meal Stan vanishes.

Analog Science Fiction and Fact 117:3, March 1997 (pp)

Burstein, Michael A., "Paying It Forward"

A novice SF writer is appalled that veteran Carl Lambclear has died. He writes a belated fan letter to his website and—receives a reply from the author. Finally accepting that something is happening, the author accepts Lambclear's mentoring and goes on to become well known in the field. Finally, this writer is dying and his final contact with Lambclear indicates that Lambclear used a program to allow his computer to reach a quantum universe in which he did not die. He send the author a copy of the program so that he too can mentor some future aspirant.

Analog Science Fiction and Fact 123:9 September 2003 (pp.)

Burstein, Michael A., "Sentimental Value"

Michael Burstein has sold his first story to Analog.  He comes to the office and demands the picture he knows Stan Schmidt takes of each author receiving the first check with his "magic" camera. In return for the photo silence, Burstein agrees to write one thousand words for the magazine—that's what a picture is worth. [Probability Zero]

Analog Science Fiction & Fact 115:12 October 1995 (pp.89-91)

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