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From: "Allan Lloyd" 
Subject: Re: (urth) GW sightings
Date: Thu, 14 Aug 2003 19:25:46 +0100

----- Original Message -----
From: "Michael Buice" 
Sent: Thursday, August 14, 2003 4:29 PM
Subject: Re: (urth) GW sightings

But if all of 300 million people in the US alone had 12 self-published
novels, how would one decide what was worth reading?  A hierarchy will
still present itself with, perhaps more difficult, obstacles to
obtaining an audience.  One could easily imagine that publishing houses
would simply become marketing houses for literature, with the same kind
of standards.  Given that anyone near a Barnes and Noble can publish
something for a small fee, I guess this is already beginning.


There is a middle way here. I see the future of quality science fiction and
fantasy in the emergence of high quality small press and print-on-demand
books. In England, Big Engine started to produce interesting and quirky
books, but has unfortunately now run out of money; but the most exciting
publisher that I have seen so far is Golden Gryphon in the US.

I've just taken delivery of Jeffrey Ford's collection "The Fantasy Writer's
Assistant and other stoies", and the stories look quite Wolfe-like. (This is
only a first impression; I look forward to reading some tonight).

They also publish story collections by Howard Waldrop, Michael Bishop, Andy
Duncan, Ian Watson, Richard Lupoff, to name just some of my favorites, and
are now publishing an anthology to celebrate there 25th publication. They
are very nicely produced books, with a print run of two to three thousand, I
think, and I find them addictively attractive. Have to stop myself spending

Speaking of Jeffrey Ford, I've just read "The Portrait of Mrs Charbuque" and
enjoyed it very much. Has anyone else on the list read it. There are some (I
think) knowing references to Gene Wolfe in the book, including an underworld
character called Mr Wolfe, and an embedded story told by Mrs Charbuque about
her mother's involvment with or abduction by a possible were-wolf. The book
is full of disguises and imposters, and is an extremely well-researched
portrait of late nineteenth century New York. I thought it the most Wolfeian
novel that I have read for a long time, even though Ford has said that he is
tired of being compared to Wolfe.

I'm now trying to find his previous three books, starting with "The
Physiogomy". Any opinions about these out there?



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