While on the subject of Farmercon90, Jean-Marc Lofficier has posted this message on his website about winning this year's Wold Newton Award.
The website SFscope reported two items of interest last month. The first is that Phil's agents have sold another TV option for the Riverworld series, this time to Hallmark Productions. The plan for now seems to be a mini-series. We're hoping for several two hour episodes like they do with a lot of their original series. The SFscope story also reports that IDW has bought the rights to Phil's novel Dare. When we first learned of this from Bette Farmer several months ago, we assumed that IDW was going to do a graphic novel version of the book. But now we see that they have launched a reprint line, New Classics of the Fantastic and we're pretty sure the book will be a reprint for this series instead of a graphic novel. So far IDW has not replied to any of our requests for information.
Back in February we reported that Graham Sleight's regular Yesterday's Tomorrows column about vintage science fiction in Locus was about Philip José Farmer. Just in case you didn't pick up a copy, you can now read the article online.
The only real "addition" to the website this month comes from Christopher Paul Carey who sent us a scan of the back cover of BUNDUKI by J.T. Edson to be added to the Advertising page.
Win Eckert alerted us to two other items of interest you can read online. The first is that somehow Farmercon90 made the news at the German science fiction website Fantasyguide. Here is a not very good, but servicable translation of the page. The second is a story in the local paper about a street being named after Peoria native Dan Fogelberg. The author of the story suggests that the city of Peoria should name more roads after its more famous citizens. Perhaps showing a flash of prescience, during the Living Legend celebration in 2001, after Sue Herring read a proclamation from the Mayor of Peoria saying that May 19th, 2001 was officially Philip José Farmer Day, Phil quipped, "That's nice, but how about getting a street?"
Last month we reported that Phil appears as a character in the story, "Feet of Sciron" by Rhys Hughes, in the new collection, HELLBOY: ODDEST JOBS. Since then we have been in contact with Mr. Hughes who tells us "PJF has appeared in many of my other stories. I ought to make a list really!" Ok, that sounds like a good idea to us! We look forward to adding all of them to the Philip José Farmer in fiction page. If you have not read any of his work, you need to check out the sampling of stories he has online. The story, "The Impregnable Fortress" is amazing.
Be sure to check out The International Bibliography regularly as our good friend Rias has been posting very frequent updates. However he did mention one item we need to correct; that Phil's grandson Torin will be helping us with a redesign of this website soon. It is true that Torin graciously volunteered to do this, and we are eager for his help, but right now there are no plans for any major website changes until we have finished publishing Farmerphile. But since there are only two issues left, we'll be redoing the site before you know it.
The final bit of news is that in August Michael Croteau, webmaster of pjfarmer.com, started a blog titled Mike is thinking about books. It's a fitting name, since that's pretty much all he does. Please check out the most recent post, Mike is thinking about publishing and leave copious comments.
The hit counter as of September 9th says 203,278 which is 3,320 visits to this main page (not the entire website) since our last update on August 11th.
At the Mystery Panel it was announced that there are four new collaborations between Philip José Farmer and other writers who finished manuscripts he began. Paul Spiteri completed the short story, "Getting Ready to Write." Christopher Paul Carey completed the novel, THE SONG OF KWASIN. Win Scott Eckert completed the novel, THE EVIL IN PEMBERLEY HOUSE. Tracy Knight is currently completing the novel, COUGAR BY THE TAIL.
While the first two novels listed are currently being shopped by Phil's agent, the Polytropical Paramyth, "Getting Ready to Write," has been printed in Farmerphile #13! If that is not enough new material to hold you over, the current issue also has an excerpt from THE SONG OF KWASIN and an interview with Christopher Paul Carey about writing the novel. Also by Phil is the long humorous speech, The Wild Weird Clime, given when Phil was the Guest of Honor at Balticon 11 in 1977. It's not very often we get two of Phil's contemporaries in the same issue, but we have a short article by Tom Wode Bellman, To Be, or Not to Be, responding to some of the comments Phil made in the speech and we have the privilege of reprinting Farmer of the Apes by celebrated African-adventure writer Charles R. Saunders. As a companion to the excerpt from THE SONG OF KWASIN, this issue's Creative Mythography column, by Win Scott Eckert and Dennis E. Power, is a timeline of the adventures of Sahhindar. We also have Steve Mattsson's second article, Escape from Loki Again, and Again, and Again, which focuses on the origin of, the origin story of Doc Savage and his five aides. Further, we have our first guest Bibliophile writer since Fender Tucker in issue #6. Heidi Ruby Miller became a fan of Phil's reading quite possibly his most overlooked science fiction novel, Tongues of the Moon. If you haven't read this book yet, you'll want to after reading her take on it. The final item in the issue is the second installment of "Unpolished Pearls from the Magic Filing Cabinet," which looks at the genesis of some of Phil's short story titles, including many of his Polytropical Paramyths. There is even an outline and beginning of a story with the title "The Henry Miller Dawn Patrol," which is very different from the story that was later published under that title.
Since Farmercon 90 was open to the public, we didn't know the exact number of attendees ahead of time as we have in the past. So for those of you who could not make it and are interested, we do have some program books left over (read the entry for Farmercon 90 for the contents). We also have some extra buttons and magnets left over as well. These will go up on the site for sale in the next week, followed by a newsletter to let you know when they are available.
We also have several additions to the website this month. Phil's grandson Torin, who was visiting from Germany and got to attend his first Farmercon, was kind enough to scan a newspaper photo of Phil and his track team from 1936 (the second picture from the top).
We have also made our first acquisition of a rare item in some time. On the uncorrected proofs page you will find an "uncorrected page proofs" of ESCAPE FROM LOKI. This proof is so rare that in nearly ten years of buying these, we had never even heard a rumor of its existence. Although the book was published in mass market paperback, this proof is the size of a trade paperback.
Rias, webmaster of The International Bibliography, sent us scans of the two ARBOR HOUSE TREASURY OF MODERN SCIENCE FICTION anthologies which reprinted The Shadow of Space and the British edition (Faber & Faber) of CHILDREN OF INFINITY (an edition we didn't even know existed) where you can find Phil's young adult story Opening the Door. Rias also sent us Phil's blurb for Roger Zelazny's THE PRINCE OF CHAOS.
Doing his part to spread the word, Henry Covert wrote an article for Astonishing Adventures Magazine titled, The Many Worlds of "Wold Newton". You can read the article here online.
Our good friend Win Scott Eckert was fortunate enough to have this year's Worldcon held near his home in Denver. He found a display with photos and descriptions of many science fiction authors and took a picture of Phil's for us (here you can read the text). Win also alerted us to the oddest addition to the site this month. On the Philip José Farmer in fiction page you will find an entry for HELLBOY: ODDEST JOBS as Phil makes an appearance in the story "Feet of Sciron" by Rhys Hughes.
The hit counter as of August 11th says 199,958 which is 2,079 visits to this main page (not the entire website) since our last update on July 11th.
Speaking of back issues, there will be a table where all twelve previous issues will be available for sale (while supplies last, some of the early issues are running low). We will also have bookmarks for sale featuring custom artwork by Charles Berlin. As always there will be "convention programs" available (these rarities from past Farmercons are quite the collector's item). And of course we always time Farmercons so that the latest issue of Farmerphile, #13 in this case, comes out that day.
In fact, why don't we give you sneak peek at the issue now. We'll start with the cover art, perhaps the most ambitious, certainly the most abstract, cover to date, by the wildly creative commercial artist Vladimir Verano. We're only going to tell you about half of what you'll find inside however. For the rest you should really come to Farmercon 90 and see firsthand what we can't tell you about now (we'll give you a hint though, it has to do with the Mystery Panel).
There has been no shortage of articles written for Farmerphile about Phil by his fans, friends and fellow science fiction authors. So far the only reprints have been the two short Riverworld parodies by the late, great, Walt Liebscher. However, when the opportunity arose to reprint Farmer of the Apes by celebrated African-adventure writer Charles R. Saunders, we jumped on it with both feet. If you have not been lucky enough to get your hands on the Spring 1978 issue of the Canadian fanzine Borealis, then this issue is not to be missed. We can also tell you this issue prints a long and very funny speech, given by Phil as the Guest of Honor at Balticon 11 in 1977. Its not very often we get two of Phil's contemporaries in the same issue, but we even have a short article by Tom Wode Bellman responding to some of the comments Phil made in the speech. We also have Steve Mattsson's second article, "Escape from Loki Again, and Again, and Again," which focuses on the origin, of the origin story, of Doc Savage and his five aides. Further, we have our first guest "Bibliophile" writer since Fender Tucker in issue #6. Heidi Ruby Miller became a fan of Phil's reading quite possibly his most overlooked science fiction novel, Tongues of the Moon. If you haven't read this book yet, you'll certainly want to after reading her comments on it. The final thing we can tell you about is the second installment of "Unpolished Pearls from the Magic Filing Cabinet," which looks at the origin of some of Phil's short stories, including many of his Polytropical Paramyths. There is even an outline and beginning of a story with the title "The Henry Miller Dawn Patrol," which is very different from the story that was later published under that title.
As for the rest of the issue, 27 out of the 52 pages, sorry, we can't tell you anything about them. Four separate "articles," to use a blanket term, and three illustrations (by Charles Berlin and Keith Howell, we can tell you that much), but you'll have to wait until Farmercon; or until you receive your copy of Farmerphile #13 in the mail; or until this site is updated on August 9th, to find out what all the fuss is about.
Our final bit of news for this month is that voting for the Farmerphile Awards is now closed. It was two very close races with the winners being decided by the slim margins of one and two votes. The winners will be announced–yes you guessed it–at Farmercon 90!
The hit counter as of July 11th says 197.879 which is 1,812 visits to this main page (not the entire website) since our last update on June 10th.
Chris also alerted us to a webpage which asked several cover artists this question: What do you feel is the primary purpose of a book cover: To accurately reflect the story or to visually 'sell' the book? How do you balance these two ideas when creating a cover? While you should recognize some of the artists polled, Bob Eggleton's answer is of special interest to Farmer fans.
And what are the odds of this? A Farmer fan named Keith Dilbone sent us an extremely hard to find item, which turned out to be much cooler than we would have ever guessed. He sent us a scan of the cover of the magazine Late Date, Vol 7 #3 from 1970 which very prominently displays the title, LOVE SONG, on the cover! This is one of two adult magazine that ran an excerpt from the novel. And, on nearly the same day, pjfarmer.com owner Rick Beaulieu would find this very interesting article by Charles Nuetzel online about his role in the origin of LOVE SONG. If you have never read this underground classic of Phil's, Ramble House (one of our favorite publishers in the world) still has copies available.
Finally, a fan named Steve Heinrich really hit the jackpot sending us two really interesting items. The first is a scan of the cover from Classicon II, a convention in 1976 where Phil was the Guest of Honor, yet we had never heard of it! Items like this popping up give us hope that there may always be something new to find out there. He also sent us a letter he received from the Philip José Farmer Society when he ordered the fanzine Farmerage from George Scheetz. This item has been added to the Advertising page.
We have two bits of news about THE CITY BEYOND PLAY by Philip José Farmer & Danny Adams. The first you already know if you are on the PJF Newsletter list; the signed limited edition is nearly sold out. The second bit of news, courtesy of a timely email from Win Scott Eckert, is likely to make matters even worse if you haven't ordered a copy of the book yet. Congratulations are in order, as the book has been nominated for a British Fantasy Society Award! Congratulations are also in order for P.S. Publishing who has an astonishing 19 nominations.
A number of you have wrote in to let us know you are coming to Farmercon 90, which will be held the Lakeview Branch of the Peoria Public Library, Saturday July 26th. This event is open to the public and we hope to see a lot of you there. Since the last update we have added a listing for another panel, and this one is not to be missed. However we're not going tell you what it is...you'll have to come and see it for yourself.
VERY IMPORTANT: don't forget, in conjunction with Farmercon 90, this year we will be giving out Farmerphile Awards for the best article about Philip José Farmer and/or his work, and also the best artwork from the last year (issues 9 - 12 of Farmerphile). Please take a few minutes and vote on them! And don't worry if you do not have these issues of Farmerphile, as you can read the articles and see the artwork here online.
The hit counter as of June 10th says 196,067 which is 1,925 visits to this main page (not the entire website) since our last update on May 12th.
In conjunction with Farmercon 90, this year we will be giving out Farmerphile Awards for the best article about Philip José Farmer and/or his work, and also the best artwork from the last year (issues 9 - 12 of Farmerphile). At last year's Farmercon we gave out several awards decided upon by the editorial staff, but this year we've decided to do it differently. We have nominated five articles and five pieces of art, and we would like you the fans to vote on them. And don't worry if you do not have these issues of Farmerphile, as you can read the articles and see the artwork here online.
In a fun bit of news, Phil is the subject of local Peoria magazine Art & Society's "Take Ten" feature. Don't worry if you don't live in Central Illinois and can't easily get a copy of the magazine, you can read the article here online.
The final news for the month is that we have produced another truly amazing issue of Farmerphile. In fact, while it wasn't thought possible that issue #11 could ever be topped, we have actually heard from more than one source that issue #12 is the best issue yet! The funny thing is that we expected to get a lot of orders from first time customers for issue #11. We figured fans of Howard Waldrop and Spider Robinson would buy the issue just for their articles. We thought for sure fans of S.M. Stirling, Mike Resnick, Michael Moorcock, James E. Gunn, Kim Newman, Norman Spinrad, Joe Haldeman, Piers Anthony, Richard A. Lupoff, Richard E. Geis, David Langford, Tracy Knight, Joe R. Lansdale, Harlan Ellison, Robin Wayne Bailey, Will Murray, Garth Nix, James Sallis, Gary K. Wolfe, Chris Roberson & Peter Crowther would buy the issue just to read their birthday wish for Phil. We have seen some of that, but all of them put together have not equaled the interest in issue #12. So, as it turns out, fans of Sherlock Holmes are still the most dedicated out there. Thankfully Sherlockians are spreading the word about this issue, it has been mentioned on Baker Street Dozen, and written about extensively on Sherlock Peoria. For fans of the Great Detective, this jam-packed issue of Farmerphile is a real treat.
We start with the terrific cover art by Keith Howell (are those lights actually glowing?). Inside the issue starts with not one, but two, articles about Phil founding a scion society chapter of the Baker Street Irregulars in Peoria Illinois; Bette Farmer's column and George H. Scheetz's article, We Were Introduced by Sherlock Holmes. We also have articles by Farmerphile regulars, Dennis E. Power, Philip José Farmer and the Case of the Two Jungle Lords about Phil's tale(s) of Sherlock Holmes in Africa, and Danny Adams', A Study of Ralph von Wau Wau which looks at the fun Phil had writing about a super-intelligent German Shepherd who had Sherlockian abilities. In Rick Lai's Urania's Babysitter, we learn of some of the surprising consequences of Professor Moriarty's demise. Our two regular features also focus on Phil's Sherlockian writings, with Win Scott Eckert's Creative Mythography column, The Farmerian Holmes touching on just how often Phil has turned to A. Conan Doyle's creation for inspiration, while Paul Spiteri's Bibliophile column focuses on Phil's behind-the-scenes narrative of what really happened when Phileas Fogg traveled around the world in eighty days.
The centerpiece of this issue however is a long lost speech Phil gave to a chapter of the Baker Street Irregulars in 1975 titled, Sherlock Holmes & Sufism. Phil talks about visiting George Pal in Hollywood about Phil's screen treatment for the second Doc Savage movie (which was never made but can be read in PEARLS FROM PEORIA) and the cameo appearance by Holmes that he planned on slipping into the movie. He also goes into great detail about where Holmes may have travelled, and whom he may have met, and what he may have studied during the Great Hiatus. This article is illustrated by Charles Berlin with a drawing of Holmes in Arab garb with a Sufi temple behind him (unfortunately this issue is so tightly packed we had much less room for artwork than normal; a fanzine tradition, by the way, that we are proud to continue). Christopher Paul Carey follows up Phil's speech with his own examination of Phil's interest in Sufism with his article, How Much Free Will Does a Pumpkin Have?
The hits just keep coming as we have two more articles about Phil's work (but not Holmes). The first is a terrific article by Irish science fiction writer Michael Carroll titled, The Lure of the Emergency Shelf. It is a rare treat to get an article from an established professional writer that is something the average fan of Phil's can read and relate to as thoroughly as this one. The second, Full Blown Comic Book Images of the Beast is the first in a series of articles about Philip José Farmer and comic books by Steve Mattsson. However Steve goes above and beyond in this article not just discussing the history of the comic book version of IMAGE OF THE BEAST, but also giving interesting details about the novel itself.
Believe it or not, we're not done with the table of contents yet. This issue also includes a truly rare and exciting find for the Wold Newton scholars out there. Jongor in the Wold Newton Family is an unused page from an addendum of Phil's seminal work TARZAN ALIVE, with Win Eckert providing its historical context. And finally we come to a new feature in Farmerphile, Unpolished Pearls from the Magic Filing Cabinet. In this section of the magazine we will be printing partial manuscripts and notes from Phil's files about just a few of the many projects he never got around to completing. In this first incarnation we have Three Metafictional Proposals where Phil describes three books he would like to write. Next we are teased a bit by the notes Phil wrote regarding Uncle Sam's Mad Tea Party, a novel which he has discussed writing in a couple of interviews. This comic novel would be about his experiences as a technical writer in the space defense industry prior to the moon landing. The issue concludes with Down to Earth's Centre, the first three chapters from an unfinished novel. This is a very different version of what was ultimately the same proposed novel as The Monster on Hold.
The hit counter as of May 12th says 194,142 which is 2,035 visits to this main page (not the entire website) since our last update on April 9th.
Look, a monthly update done on time for a change! (if you don't count the fact that we missed last month all together...) There are several interesting things to talk about this month, and the first two have to do with Farmerphile. Issue 12 will be going to the printer for proofs by the end of the week and we should have the issue done and in the mail by the end of the month. We should also have the cover and table of contents listed online by the beginning of next week.
The bigger news however is that we're letting you in on a little secret about Farmerphile. Before this project began, it was decided there would be a limited edition of 25 copies of each issue signed by Philip José Farmer! 24 "subscribers" were found who agreed to purchase a signed copy of each issue through the original planned run of ten. These signed copies sold for $40 each. Unfortunately, of those 24 people, only 22 of them purchased the complete run. One person only bought the first two issues, and another only bought the first five. So right now, you can find a signed copy of issue 3, issue 4, issue 5, issue 6, issue 7, issue 8, issue 9, issue 10 and issue 11 on ebay. Once these auctions end on April 14th, we will most likely put the remaining signed copies of issues 5 through 11 online.
And, yes, there are signed copies of the issues after the original ten. The 22 remaining subscribers have already purchased their signed copy of issue 11 and they have first crack at the last three or four issues. Two signed copies of issue 12, etc... will also eventually be put on ebay, unless someone purchases issues 3 through 11 or 6 through 11, then I will let them buy 12 and higher directly (just like the original subscribers).
You may have noticed that there were only 24 subscribers out of the 25 sets. Yes, we do have one complete set of signed Farmerphiles available. In fact, it will be put on ebay in the next few days; issues 1 through 11, with a starting bid of $440. A newsletter will be sent at that time.
While we haven't updated this website in nearly two months, ironically Rias, who used to update his site, The International Bibliography every few months, has been posting updates very frequently, at least once a week, lately. We can vouch for how time consuming websites of this size are, so kudos to him for the steady work and regular updates. We check in at least once a week to see what he has added to his site.
Other than adding friends almost daily, we have not done a whole lot on our Myspace page since we put it up last August. However we recently added something really interesting that we found on youtube. In 1996 Phil was featured in a French documentary titled, Moi, Tarzan. You can order a French copy of the dvd at that link, or you can watch the English version of it online. First though, go to the Myspace page and watch the two minute video snippet we found on youtube.
Since the last update, we have added three new items to the Uncorrected Proofs page. The first is for Phil's latest collection, VENUS ON THE HALF-SHELL AND OTHERS which came out shortly before they received the cover art for the book. As uncorrected proofs go (one of our favorite topics), with the nice glossy cover, this is one of the better looking ones. However, the other two we added to the webpage, but unfortunately not to our collection. Both of these were available on ebay, and in both cases we were outbid for them. In fact, we bid over $200 for this proof/advance reading copy of VENUS ON THE HALF-SHELL from 1975, but we were outbid in the final seconds of the auction. This would have been the oldest proof in the collection so we were very unhappy about losing this one. Although, had we won the auction for the uncorrected proof of DARE, it, then, would have been the oldest by ten years. Oh well, thankfully they put pictures of these in their auctions, so we can at least add them to the webpage.
And one final note, speaking of VENUS ON THE HALF-SHELL AND OTHERS, both the $300 lettered and the $125 limited editions have sold out. The $38 trade edition won't last much longer.
The hit counter as of April 9th says 192,107 which is 4,018 visits to this main page (not the entire website) since our last update on February 13th.
In further happy news, issue #11 of Farmerphile is available to order. This is the first issue beyond the original planned run of ten which serialized the novel UP FROM THE BOTTOMLESS PIT. It is also the most ambitious issue so far. It starts off with Bette Farmer's column telling about some of Phil's more memorable birthday parties. We managed to get this from her without letting on that this was going to be a Special 90th Birthday issue, with birthday wishes from the following science fiction luminaries: S.M. Stirling, Mike Resnick, Michael Moorcock, James E. Gunn, Kim Newman, Norman Spinrad, Joe Haldeman, Piers Anthony, Richard A. Lupoff, Richard E. Geis, David Langford, Tracy Knight, Joe R. Lansdale, Harlan Ellison, Robin Wayne Bailey, Will Murray, Garth Nix, James Sallis, Gary K. Wolfe, Chris Roberson & Peter Crowther. The cover art, by first time Farmerphile artist Joey Van Massenhoven, depicts Phil relaxing and enjoying his birthday (and who wouldn't with all those books). While we mentioned some of the following in the last update, we couldn't show the cover art, or mention the birthday wishes, because we wanted to surprise Phil with this tribute.
Thanks to the unprecedented generosity of Phil's long time friend Bob Barrett, we have two previously unpublished stories by Phil in this issue: The First Robot, illustrated by first timer Henry Covert, and Duo Miaule, illustrated by Farmerphile favorite Charles Berlin. Bob also sent us a manuscript titled "A Good Story is a Good Story is a Good Story," which as it turns out was a longer version of Phil's editorial in the July 1954 issue of Fantastic Universe, White Whales, Raintrees, Flying Saucers. We were going to print this as well but while working on the issue we discovered the even longer version of this article which had previously appeared in Skyhook 23, the Winter 1954-1955 issue. We decided to run this version and its follow-up piece, Parables are Pablum by Tim Howller instead of Bob's version.
In each of the first ten issues we have tried, not always successfully, to get an article from a professional science fiction author about Phil. Either about his influence on them or about meeting him or some other personal story. In this issue, we got two completely different, yet absolutely perfect, examples of the types of articles we'd always hoped to publish. The first, On Not Going There is by Howard Waldrop who explains just how hard it was to break into the field in the early 1970s with authors like Phil around doing everything first, and better, than you could hope to. The second article, Smoke Gets in Your Nose is by Spider Robinson who tells of the first time he met Phil, at the 1973 Worldcon, and the revelry that ensued.
The issue is rounded out by articles about Phil's work, first by the aforementioned Bob Barrett. This one is actually a combination of the his article Tarzan by Edgar-Philip-Rice-José-Burroughs-Farmer (which appeared in Jasoomian #10, June 1973) and “Further Reflections in a Golden Eye,” (which was written for The Doc Savage Reader in 1973 but never submitted). Considering when these were first written, you have to agree that Robert was one of the first Tarzan and Doc Savage aficionados to really “get” Phil. Paul Spiteri's Bibliophile this month is about A BARNSTOMER IN OZ and as always he has a gift that makes you want to reread the book he discusses as you realize how much you missed the first time you read it. In his Creative Mythography column, Win Scott Eckert looks at the height of Wold Newton Scholarship, adding someone to the Wold Newton Family. In his article The Magic Filing Cabinet and The Missing Page, editor Christopher Paul Carey gives us some tantalizing details behind the new collection of Phil's fictional author stories, VENUS ON THE HALF-SHELL AND OTHERS.
Speaking of VENUS, there has been an interesting development with this book since the last update. Zacharias Nuninga updated his website, The International Bibliography on February 4th and lauded the book, noting the very interesting introduction by Christopher Paul Carey and the foreword by Tom Wode Bellman but saying he couldn't decide which part of the book to read next because he had read it all previously. Then, three days later he updated his website again, now speculating that Tom Wode Bellman is himself a fictional author! You'll have to examine all three of their websites and see what you think about this controversey.
One more note about this book, and no its not the usual "Buy it now before its too late!" warning (if you don't get one before they are all gone, don't say we didn't warn you). This book is gorgeous. We've already talked about the cover art, and how Phil liked it so much he wanted the original. While the original painting, or the prints you can buy from Bob Eggleton, are wonderful, the actual book itself is just something else. We really can't decide what about it looks so good, but as you can see in this picture, the actual dust jacket wrapped around the book is just stunning.
In other news, Win Eckert participated in another BlogTalkRadio/Geekerati broadcast, this one on the topic of small publishers Black Coat Press and Moonstone Books keeping the pulp tradition alive. Once again Win proved very interesting and knowledgeable and it is understandable why, at the end of the show, the host Christian Johnson insisted they have Win back more often.
The hit counter as of Febraury 13th says 188,089 which is 2,346 visits to this main page (not the entire website) since our last update on January 16th.
Yes, Virginia (or Bette in this case) there will be an 11th issue of Farmerphile, and more beyond that. We first announced this back in August 2007, but it bears repeating. Farmerphile began with enough unpublished material by Phil for a planned run of ten issues, including the serialization of UP FROM THE BOTTOMLESS PIT. Thanks to Bob Barrett's generosity and further trips to Peoria and searches through Phil's files have secured material for another four or five—or possibly even more—quarterly issues.
While we don't have the cover art or the full contents of issue #11 listed online yet we can tell you it has articles by regulars Bette Farmer, Paul Spiteri Win Scott Eckert, and Christopher Paul Carey and by first timers Spider Robinson and Howard Waldrop! This is our first issue with two "celebrity" contributors, and they both outdid themselves with terrific articles. We also have a new cover artist. We discovered Joey Van Massenhoven's artwork on MySpace and wasted no time asking him if he would like to contribute to Farmerphile since he listed TO YOUR SCATTERED BODIES GO as one of his favorite books.
This issue will be going to the printer any day, so now is the time to send in payment if you have not already. Please note, as we announced back in October, and as it says on the Farmerphile webpage, we have had a small price increase. Copies are now $11 each instead of $10, but that price includes postage in the U.S. and Canada. If you want to prepay for multiple issues, as many did through issue #10, you can pay for 11 through 14 as we are sure we will have at least four more issues.
We have two new announcements regarding VENUS ON THE HALF-SHELL AND OTHERS. If you are on the newsletter list you already know the first one:
As you may have read on Bob Eggleton's blog, Phil was so impressed with the artwork for the cover of this new collection that he wanted to buy it himself. Happily that painting now hangs proudly in Phil's house, but this is where you come in; you can get a signed, or even inscribed, print of that same painting, directly from Bob Eggleton for only $20 + $5 shipping (in the US). The dimensions are 11 x 17, outside, and inside the image is 10 x 12 1/2, with the title at the bottom. To order one, go to this website and click on the email link.
The second announcement is that while Subterranean Press originally had the book scheduled for a February release, that has been moved up to January 17th. That is tomorrow! If you are reading this update much after January 18th, and you have not ordered a copy of the book yet, I sure hope you have a time machine. Phil's Subterranean Press collections, especially those with starred reviews from Publisher's Weekly, tend to sell out in just days.
In other publishing news, TALES OF THE SHADOWMEN 4: Lords of Terror, has just been released by Black Coat Press. It features the talents of sf, mystery, and horror writers Kim Newman, Brian Stableford, John Shirley, John Peel, and Jean-Marc Lofficier, as well as names familiar to followers of Phil's Wold Newton mythos, such as Matthew Baugh, Jess Nevins, Rick Lai, and Win Scott Eckert.
Win's story pits Madame Atomos, female Fu Manchu-like mastermind of Japanese descent, against the agents of U.N.C.L.E. A letter Phil once wrote to The Baker Street Journal indicates he was a fan of, or at least interested in the show The Man From U.N.C.L.E. We don't know the contents of the BSJ articles Phil was defending in this issue, but it makes sense that he was interested in the show, since several of the original U.N.C.L.E. novels written by the late David McDaniel have strong ties to the Sherlockian canon, and also contain crossovers galore with popular characters such as Fu Manchu, The Saint, The Avengers, Miss Marple, and Sherlock Holmes himself. Plus, it was a great show and Phil has great taste.
The entire series of TALES OF THE SHADOWMEN books are a real treat if you love good old-fashion pulp adventure tales. And who doesn't?
Two more brief items we'd like to mention. A couple of friends of this website have interesting blogs online; be sure to take a few minutes and check out both artist Charles Berlin's blog as well as Ramble House publisher Fender Tucker's blog.
The hit counter as of January 13th says 185,743 which is 2,340 visits to this main page (not the entire website) since our last update on December 13th.
The big news this month is all about VENUS ON THE HALF-SHELL AND OTHERS, the new collection from Subterranean Press. First, artist Bob Eggleton posted the fantastic cover art on his blog. Then he posted more comments about it when he learned that Phil liked it so much he wanted to buy it. Then Publishers Weekly gave VENUS a coveted starred review. Of course if you have visited VENUS editor, Christopher Paul Carey's website in the last few weeks, you already knew all this. And finally, the book seems to be on the publisher's fast track as it is due out in February 2008. Be sure to pre-order your copy now before they're all sold (as Phil's Subterranean Press books have a habit of doing).
Last month we mentioned that Bob Barrett had sent us some reviews to add to the site but we had not gotten to them yet. He sent us reviews for A FEAST UNKNOWN, LORD OF THE TREES/THE MAD GOBLIN and HADON OF ANCIENT OPAR all from the Burroughs fanzine The Gridley Wave. He also sent us an interesting letter by Phil defending Edgar Rice Burroughs, that appeared in The Gridley Wave #13, January 1964.
We also added a review of FLIGHT TO OPAR and our first reviews of DOWN IN THE BLACK GANG, UP FROM THE BOTTOMLESS PIT AND OTHER STORIES and THE CITY BEYOND PLAY. There is also mention of another review here, but you can't get to the full text. If you have not already talked someone into buying you this book for Christmas, just buy it yourself. As we mentioned above, Phil tends to sell out small press book runs very quickly.
Just like last month we also got a new addtion to the website thanks to an ebay seller who was willing to share with us. I can't tell you how many old fanzines we have purchased from Bwana25 but after being outbid this time he was nice enough to share this letter with us. What makes this one so interesting is that in it Phil talks about writing the space opera novel tentatively titled RAMSTAN. This was of course eventually published as THE UNREASONING MASK in 1981. However, the letter in question appeared in 1961, twenty years earlier!
Win Eckert alerted us to an article about Phil in the new British publication, The Paperback Fanatic. It is refreshing to see a new slick fanzine, especially one just for paperback collectors. It is also gratifying to see a new magazine do an article about Phil, this one about his Tarzanic writing. The Paperback Fanatic does not have a website yet, but you can find information about it on the British Horror Anthology Hell website or send an email to: "Justin AT justincultprint.free-online.co.uk"
Of interest to the many Farmer fans who are also Burroughs fans, long time fan (of both authors) David Critchfield has just published The Gilak's Guide to Pellucidar. To quote from the first review of the book, "This book is a wonderful labor of love and a useful tool for the Pellucidar fan." The cover art and interior illustrations by Harry Roland round out the book nicely.
As is often the case, when we ask for audience participation, the response has been, well anemic. But that has not stopped us from putting up a new page of reader's favorite quotes by Phil. Now that you see what it is we are looking for, perhaps you will send us one. If we get enough of them we'll start breaking them down into categories; philosophy, writing, humor, etc... Thanks to Eileen Parker at Author Sound Bites for giving us the idea for this page.
The hit counter as of December 13th says 183,404 which is 2,041 visits to this main page (not the entire website) since our last update on November 12th.
The first being that the long awaited novella, THE CITY BEYOND PLAY, is now available and shipping from PS Publishing! Not only that, but for the first time ever, we are taking material from Farmerphile and posting it here on the website. In Issue #7 (January 2007) we published an interview with co-authors Danny Adams and Philip José Farmer as well as a short excerpt from the book. Both of these can now be read here online! I (Mike) was lucky enough to be able to read some of Danny's early chapters while he was finishing the book. I was very impressed at the time so I've had very high expectations for the finished story. I am very pleased to tell you that the book is even better than I had hoped!
Second only to having a new book by Phil to read, our favorite thing in the world is finding something old written by Phil that we did not know existed. In 1976 the fanzine Citadel polled over sixty science fiction authors and artists to find out; How Dinosaurs Did It. Having only seen Phil's answer to this question, we are forced to speculate, but we don't think it is too much of a stretch to assume, it was one of the more anatomically interesting replies. Thank you very much to one of our favorite ebay sellers, Laura Larrett for sharing this information with us.
Congratulations to Phil's long time friend, Locus reviewer and Farmerphile contributor, Gary K. Wolfe who won the Special Non-Professional Award at this year's World Fantasy Convention! If you want learn something about the history of science fiction through the 1990s, be sure to check out Gary's newest book, SOUNDINGS: REVIEWS 1992-1996.
Farmerphile #10, which, as it happily turns out, will not be the final issue, came out at the end of October. This issue has a "Peoria" theme as many of the articles deal with Phil's use of his hometown in his fiction. Bette Farmer's column talks about moving back to Peoria from Los Angeles in the early 1970s. Win Eckert's Creative Mythography column focuses on the many stand-ins Phil has used for Peoria. Danny Adams again writes about some of Phil's short stories, here looking at the four stories that originally appeared in the anthologies CONTINUUM 1 - 4, and were later published as STATIONS OF THE NIGHTMARE. Jason Robert Bell's cover art for this issue, is not a glimpse of Peoria's raucous side, but is based on the collection STATIONS OF THE NIGHTMARE. Paul Spiteri's Bibliophile column looks at Phil's wild, Peoria-based P.I. novel, NOTHING BURNS IN HELL.
We also have two very funny Peoria related items by Phil in this issue. The short story, A Peoria Night, details the adventure of two brothers trying to find a little action in the seedier part of town. Coincidentally the presumably never mailed, or at least never published, letter to the editor titled A Modest Proposal, if considered, would have solved the problems faced by the characters in A Peoria Night. Amazingly we heard from the all-knowing Bob Barrett, that the two brothers in the story were clearly based on long time Burroughs Bibliophile publisher Vern Coriell and his brother Everett.
Off the Peoria theme we have two interesting articles; The Smartest Man in the World by first time contributor Dr. Bennett L. Oppenhien shows that Phil's writings have influenced more than just science fiction authors. Next we have Dennis E. Power's fourth, and most ambitious, article for Farmerphile where he links together THE STONE GOD AWAKENS with the Dayworld series and a few other stories and novels for good measure. And of course we have the conclusion to Phil's novel UP FROM THE BOTTOMLESS PIT!
Please note that as of November 1st, all issues of Farmerphile are now $11 each (instead of $10 each), but that includes postage in the US and Canada. However if you are just now discovering Farmerphile and want to order all ten back issues at once, for a limited time you can get the set for $100.
Back in September we asked you to send us scans of any colorful inscriptions you have from Phil. Our invaluable source, Bob Barrett, came through with three interesting inscriptions from his collection. Note that all three have the printed J at the beginning of José meaning they were signed in the 1970s.
Last month we told you how you could get signed books directly from Win Scott Eckert and Keith Howell and how you could get signed copies of THE COMPLEAT OVA HAMLET directly from the publisher, Ramble House. Somehow Richard Lupoff got word of this and wrote in to thank us for giving Ramble House and Ova Hamlet a little publicity. Well, as the saying goes, no good deed goes unpunished, and having Mr. Lupoff's email address we accosted him for anything Farmerian he could give us. He graciously coughed up a blurb written by Phil for his book CIRCUMPOLAR! and if all goes as planned he may soon also grace the pages of Farmerphile!
There are also some things we didn't get to this month. First we have several reviews to add to the site. All of them but one were sent to us by, yes you guessed it, Bob Barrett. We also promised a new page containing quotes from Phil's work. We have received some but not many. So, if you have a favorite quote from Phil; a colorful turn of phrase, or a bit of philosophy, or just something really funny, please send it to us. We will put it on the site and give you credit for sending it in.
In some news outside of this website, Zacharias updated his site, The International Bibliography for the first time since June. As always his updates are well worth the wait and full of new information. He has also converted 19 more pages to the new format, adding many new book covers to his site.
Win Eckert let us know about a really cool Star Trek web site that has descriptions of stories that were rejected as Star Trek scripts. This includes write-ups of Phil's two short stories, The Shadow of Space and Sketches Among The Ruins of My Mind. Definitely worth checking out.
Danny Adams sent us this note: One of my favorite SF writers these days is a fellow named S.M. Stirling, and Uncle Phil gets mentioned in the acknowledgments of the Spring 2008 installment of a quasi-pulp-styled series he's writing; IN THE COURTS OF THE CRIMSON KINGS. Coincidentally, S.M. has long been on the PJF Newsletter list and we can tell you that he will soon be making an appearance in Farmerphile!
The hit counter as of November 12th says 181,363 which is 2,103 visits to this main page (not the entire website) since our last update on October 10th.
We have another rare addition to the site this month, a letter by Phil that appeared in the Australian fanzine Philosophical Gas #28 in the winter of 1974. This being the Australian winter, we have listed it on the letters webpage between a letter that appeared in the summer of 1974 and November 1974.
Last month we created a new shared world webpage listing stories by other authors set in Phil's worlds. However, if you recall, the page was incomplete because we did not have time to include descriptions of the stories. This oversight has been remedied thanks to the efforts of Farmerphile editor, and occasional website contributor, Paul Spiteri. One of the items on the shared world page is the short story Shades of Pemberley which appeared in Farmerphile issues 8 and 9. One of the central characters in this story is the great pulp detective Sexton Blake. Mark Hodder, webmaster of the Blakiana website has added a summary of the story to this premier Sexton Blake resource; thus offering further proof of the importance of Win Eckert finding this long lost story.
While on the subject of adding new pages to the site, we have plans for another new one, but it is going to require some audience participation. Through the new Myspace page we received a message from Eileen Parker requesting a quote from Phil for her Author Sound Bites blog. This webpage being for authors as much as it is about them, many of the quotes have to do with writing. We'd like to do something a little bit different. If you have a favorite quote by Phil, something he has said in his fiction, or in an article, letter or speech, email it to Mike. Eventually we will pick the most appropriate one for Eileen's website and send it to her. Ultimately though, we'd like to create a page on this site full of quotes by Phil, listing not only where they came from, but also the person who suggested them and perhaps even a paragraph from the fan saying why they like that particular quote. So, if you would like to see your name and comments permanently on this site, here is your chance.
The tenth issue of Farmerphile is days away from going to the printer. The moment it does we will add the details of this issue to the website and send out a newsletter about it. However, we do have important news about the back issues, especially if you have not bought them yet. Due to rising print and especially postage costs, we regret that we will be raising the price of Farmerphile from $10 each to $11 each on November 1st. The $10 price, which includes postage, is good for all issues #1 through #10 if you order and send payment before November 1st. After that deadline, all issues will be $11, from #1 through #14 or #15 or however high we go. If you are one of the many people who ordered the first several issues, but (apparently) were waiting for #10 to come out so you could read UP FROM THE BOTTOMLESS PIT without having to wait three months between installments, now is the time to order!
On a happier note, we do have some good book deals to tell you about. The first involves the collection, THE COMPLEAT OVA HAMLET by Richard A. Lupoff. This very funny, and highly recommended book contains parodies of; J.G. Ballard, Philip K. Dick, Harlan Ellison, Philip José Farmer, Robert E. Howard, L. Ron Hubbard, Steven King, Fritz Leiber, H.P. Lovecraft, Barry N. Malzberg, John Norman, Mickey Spillane, Norman Spinrad and Kurt Vonnegut. It was a toss up whether we would list this book on the parodies or fiction about Farmer page. The later won out; though the story "God of the Naked Unicorn" is a parody of Phil's pulp hero adaptations, he is a character, of sorts, in the story. The deal for this book is that you can order a signed copy directly from the publisher Ramble House for only $25. Unsigned copies can be ordered directly from the Ramble House Lulu Press Store for $18 (plus shipping for either).
Wold Newton Universe web master and regular Farmerphile contributor Win Scott Eckert also has a special deal right now just for fans of this website. Over the last couple of years he has published four short stories in various "pulp" collections; "The Vanishing Devil" in TALES OF THE SHADOWMEN 1: The Modern Babylon, "The Eye of Oran" in TALES OF THE SHADOWMEN 2: Gentlemen of the Night, "Shadows Over Kunlun" in LANCE STAR - SKY RANGER and "Les Levres Rouges" in TALES OF THE SHADOWMEN 3: Danse Macabre. Win has a limited number of these books on hand, if you are among the first to visit his website and email him, you can purchase signed copies of the book at cover price (plus shipping of course). I'm getting the two I don't already have now.
And announcing SUPER HEROIC TALES, an all new book illustrated by Farmerphile regular Keith Howell. What happens when "the bloody pulps" meet "comic book heroes"? You get a wonderful, pulse-pounding book of stories featuring "Super Heroes," living in a "Prose" world! Five different stories, by five different authors, all illustrated by one talented artist. The book can be ordered from Wildcat Books Lulu Press Store, or if you go to Keith's page and tell him we sent you, you can get a signed copy for the cover price (plus shipping of course).
The hit counter as of October 10th says 179,260 which is 1,997 visits to this main page (not the entire website) since our last update on September 10th.