Charles De Lint
Books to Look for
I’ve long admired Terry Bisson as a writer, but I had no idea he was an editor until the small, attractive trade paperbacks showed up in my post office box. Now I’ve got another reason to admire his work.
The PM Press Outspoken Authors Series has eight entries so far, including such genre stalwarts as Kim Stanley Robinson, Michael Moorcock, and Rudy Rucker, as well as editor Bisson in Volume One. Each book has a photo of the author on the cover and contains a meaty novelet/novella along with one or two essays, poetry (at least in Le Guin’s case), a bibliography, and an interview conducted by Bisson.
Le Guin’s book opens with a classic story of a rigid society and genera relationships, told as only she can tell such stories, and presented here in a revised version. There’s also the poetry (an excellent, if brief section), an essay on modesty, and my favorite piece in the book, a reprint from Harper’s called “Staying Awake While We Read,” in which she takes on corporate publishing and explains the inherent fallacy of trying to fit the buying habits of book lovers into the annual growth mold that stockholders expect from their “product.”
I’d recommend you buy this book simply to read that essay, though you won’t be disappointed by the rest of the collection.