Sunday, July 17, 2005

New George Alec Effinger book

As a longtime science fiction fan, I worry that many of the writers I love will be forgotten soon after their deaths. It's not as if I'm an antiquarian; I love many of the current writers, such as Bruce Sterling, Neal Stephenson and Kim Stanley Robinson. But I also worry about writers I've loved for years, such as Roger Zelazny and Jack Vance, being forgotten by readers in the 21st century. I went to a science fiction convention years ago where Darrell Schweitzer, a fan, editor and writer, talked about a panel that was devoted to Jack Williamson. It was a disaster, Schweitzer said. Few people at the convention appeared to know who Williamson was. (He's a famous old SF writer who wrote a wonderful horror-science fiction novel called "Darker Than You Think.")

One of my favorites, George Alec Effinger, died in 2002, and already there is little sign that he's remembered in Cleveland, the city of his birth. Effinger was expecially good as a short story writer, and there's a new collection, "George Alec Effinger Live! From Planet Earth," which collects several of his most famous stories but also includes any stories never collected in an Effinger anthology before.

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