Introductions to PJF's Books and Stories

The following is a list of introductions, forewords, afterwords, author's notes, etc., to the works of Philip José Farmer. Some of these are written by Farmer himself and some are written by other authors or editors. The ones that talk about the story behind the story, where the ideas came from, or facts about getting the story published are especially interesting. This is one reason we recommend all of the Phantasia Press printings. Unless otherwise noted, these extra writings appear in all printings of a book.

This appears in all the printings of DANGEROUS VISIONS (1967). In this gushing introduction Ellison extols Farmer's virtues as both person and writer and accurately predicts a Hugo award for this story.

This appears in all the printings of DANGEROUS VISIONS (1967). Farmer talks about first hearing about the Triple Revolution Document just before Harlan Ellison asked him to write a story for DANGEROUS VISIONS. He also talks about writing the story and parts he had to cut out to keep the story down to 30,000 words.

This introduction appears in BACKDROP OF STARS (1968) and WORLDS OF MAYBE (1970). Silverberg claims that this story is so brilliantly realized in just a few thousand words that it needs no introduction, and is better to read it unguided.

These comments appear in BACKDROP OF STARS (1968), WORLDS OF MAYBE (1970), THE WORLDS OF PHILIP JOSÉ FARMER 1: Protean Dimensions (2010). In this long commentary Farmer tells how he had the same dream three times which prompted him to write this story. He then goes on to talk about the scientific theories that he would have use to expand his short story into a novel, that would make his geocentric flat Earth work. The more he thinks about it, the harder and more complicated it gets to make everything work.

Farmer states that this book is volume IX of the autobiography of Lord Grandrith and describes some of the troubles he had getting it printed because of The Nine.

Sturgeon asks the question; Why do superhuman, heroic figures (in fiction) so seldom have a sex life. He talks about the relationship between sex and violence and points out that one of the things Farmer is saying in this book is that unlimited sex and unlimited violence, equals unlimited absurdity.

A brief note from Farmer claiming that this book is not by him but is actually volume X of the memoirs of Lord Grandrith.

This introduction appears in all printings of THE HUGO WINNERS VOL 2. Isaac talks about the first time he met Phil when the two of them, along with Randall Garrett, were being interviewed on a radio program in the 1950s.

Farmer claims that this book is a biography of a real person and explains how he tracked the real "Lord Greystoke" down. He also explains that he will show where the books of Edgar Rice Burroughs were accurate and where they were fictionalized.

Farmer claims that the box of unpublished manuscripts by Watson were not destroyed in the bombings of WWII as most people think. He has obtained the first of these surviving manuscripts and is publishing it here, mostly "as is", even though it appears to be a first draft and contains statements by Watson that he is sure Watson would have removed or rewritten.

In the Foreword Farmer talks about reading AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 DAYS several times as a child and then rereading it as an adult. It was during this rereading that he decided he could write a behind-the-scenes story that would have more danger and adventure than the original.

In the Introduction Farmer mentions some of the oddities of Phileas Fogg in Verne's novel and uses them as a jumping off point to THE OTHER LOG.

Farmer directs readers to the map of central Africa as it appeared in 10,000 B.C. and describes changes from today.

Farmer talks about how this book was supposed to be the conclusion of the main Riverworld series but that at 400,000 words it was too long and had to be split into two separate books. He says that after the fourth volume, THE MAGIC LABYRINTH, he hopes to write more stories set on Riverworld, involving other characters.

In this short Foreword Farmer explains that this book was previously published as THE GATE OF TIME, a title the publisher picked and he didn't like. He also explains that he has restored some scenes that the publisher changed and added about 10,000 words, many of them to the end of the book.

This introduction only appears in the Gregg Press printing (1978). The main point of this 10 page introduction is that while this is not one of Farmer's more important works, it does share the qualities that run through most of Farmer's books and short stories and is worth reading. It is a planetary romance softened by satire, but not a complete satire of the planetary romance type story. It is a mixing of genres with a sprinkling of reality.

Farmer fist tells how the title to JESUS ON MARS came to him in dream, then he talks about his agent not informing Pinnacle that an abridgement of the story was being done for Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine so the book was published before the shorter version could come out. He finally talks about the scenes from THE MAGIC LABYRINTH that had to be cut and how one giant battle scene was greatly reduced but the original long version is here.

This introduction only appears in the Gregg Press printing (1980). This introduction covers the long history of the book and its non-publication in the 1950s. Also pointed out is that while this book won a Hugo award in 1972, had it been printed in the early 1950s it would have really been a big deal. The bulk of the intro talks about the themes that run through not only this book, but the bulk of Farmer's work. There are also some notes at the end of the introduction where Farmer comments on some of the points brought up.

This introduction only appears in the Gregg Press printing (1980). This introduction covers talks about the clues given in the first three Riverworld books as to the origin and purpose of the riverworld. Powers then makes several speculations as to the ultimate ending of the series and its possible connections to INSIDE OUTSIDE. Most of his speculations are refuted by Farmer in some notes at the end of the introduction.

This introduction only appears in the Gregg Press printing (1980). This introduction begins with the fact that DARE was originally going to be serialized in Startling Stories in 1953 but the magazine stopped being printed monthly. This explains why the book, finally published in 1965, reads more like his earlier works. The intro also discusses many of the similarities between DARE and THE LOVERS.

This introduction only appears in the Gregg Press printing (1980). This introduction talks about Farmer's habit of writing stories that beg to be dissected because his influences are so blatant. He also discusses where Farmer was in his career when this book was written and some of parallels between this book and the Riverworld series.

This foreword only appears in the Phantasia Press printing (1980). Farmer talks about first coming up with the idea for Kickaha and the tiered world in High School. He then talks about books he read as a child that influenced the writing of this book.

This foreword only appears in the Phantasia Press printing (1981). Farmer talks about his editor at Ace changing the titles of the first three Tiers books and claims to have seen a copy of BEHIND THE WALLS OF TERRA printed as BEYOND THE WALLS OF TERRA. This was how he knew Ace had reprinted the book. So far no collector has found a copy with the different title.

This foreword only appears in the Phantasia Press printing (1981). Farmer talks about Kickaha taking over as main character from Wolff and then discusses some of the influences on this book as well as some of influences his books have had on people.

This foreword only appears in the Gregg Press printing (1981). Powers points out that all of the stories in this collection can be considered pastiches if you stretch the definition a little. He then goes on to discuss that most of Farmer's works (not just the stories collected here) can be considered pastiches.

This foreword only appears in the Phantasia Press printing (1982). Farmer talks about the poor editing job Ace did on this book and how he had to make many punctuation changes to make this the definitive edition of this book. He the talks about other problems he has had with editors and publishers.

There are 11 notes from Farmer explaining points in the book, usually referring to the validity of some point about the book being a true story.

This foreword only appears in the Phantasia Press printing (1983). Farmer mostly talks about all of the series and projects that he has begun but, so far, not been able to finish. He also tells how visiting Gene Roddenberry's office and seeing his first lavalite (or lava lamp) gave him the idea for this book.

In the preface Farmer explains that while THE MAGIC LABYRINTH was supposed to be the final book in the series, he left himself an opening for another book. He decided to explore what his characters would do with the power they now had control of in the Ethicals tower.

The afterword is a brief synopsis of the events in the first four Riverworld Books.

In this preface Farmer explains that the basis for this novel comes from his short story "The Sliced-Crosswise-Only-On-Tuesday-World". He also explains the difference between the horizontal and vertical calendars.

This introduction only appears in the Easton Press printing (1986). Not wanting to give away the plot of the book, Zelazny mostly talks about Farmer's remarkable career and and how many different types of books and stories he has written.

In this essay, which only appears in the Bantam printing (1988), Farmer talks about having a moderate writer's block, greatly admiring Vonnegut's books and how his own early career paralleled that of Kilgore Trout's. These things led him to contacting Vonnegut and getting permission to write VENUS ON THE HALF-SHELL. After talking about some of the ideas in the book, he then talks about all the attention the book had when it came out and Vonnegut's reaction to it.

This preface gives a short history of Michael Croteau's involvement with Farmer, from website, to selling photocopies of unpublished stories, to Farmerphile, to the book at hand. It also discusses the wide range of Farmer's work and how it is (partially) represented in Worlds of PJF.

In this foreword Malmont talks about discovering Phil's work when he was young, especially DOC SAVAGE: HIS APOCALYPTIC LIFE, and the impact this had on his life and career.

This preface contrasts the theme of volume 1 with volume 2 and talks about Farmer's interest in the "soft" sciences like anthropology, archeology, linguistics, biology, philosophy and theology. It shows how most of the contents of this book are tied together with the twin themes of man and immortality.

In this foreword Bear tells of first discovering Farmer's work and how, through the years, Farmer continued to challenge his thinking and the influence he had on Bear's own work.

This being the first of Titan's "Wold Newton Novels," Eckert gives extensive background about Farmer's discovery of the Wold Newton Family. There is also "A Chronology of Major Events Pertinent to The Other Log of Phileas Fogg."