Alec Nevala-Lee

Thoughts on art, creativity, and the writing life.

Archive for December 21st, 2018

Across the universe

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Over the last week, I’ve received a number of inquiries from readers asking whether the material that was cut from Astounding will ever see the light of day. (As I mentioned in a recent post, the original draft of the book was twice as long as what eventually saw print, with the vast majority of the deleted sections relating to the career of John W. Campbell.) I hope to eventually release much of this information in one form or another, but a lot of it has already been published right here on this blog. With that in mind, I’ve expanded my page for science fiction studies—which hadn’t been updated in over a year—with eighty more posts, all of which cover aspects of the genre that I wasn’t able to fit into the book. Some of my personal favorites include my original research on the illustration from Gilbert and Sullivan that inspired the Foundation series; the identity of the mysterious “Empress” who appears repeatedly in the writings of L. Ron Hubbard; Hubbard’s belief that he was the reincarnation of Captain Kidd; the role of the mystic John Cooke in the early days of Scientology and the attempt to levitate the Pentagon; the fact that Steven Spielberg’s father may be the oldest living subscriber to Analog; Isaac Asimov’s lost review of Dianetics; Scientology’s efforts to target people suffering from Lyme disease, Gulf War syndrome, and chronic fatigue syndrome; my discovery of the original draft of Campbell’s “Who Goes There?”; the homoerotic science fiction art of Alejandro Cañedo; the legacy of Nostradamus from Unknown to Orson Welles; the sad case of William H. Sheldon, Walter H. Breen, and Marion Zimmer Bradley; the touch football game that never happened between the FBI and the Church of Scientology; and much more. Happy reading, and I’ll see you again in the new year!

Written by nevalalee

December 21, 2018 at 9:35 am

Quote of the Day

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If that part of science which is regarded as stable be called basic, then the traditional method is to take as basic that which at the time is consciously unattained, whilst I take as basic that which at the time is consciously attained. Whilst the traditional way is to regard the facts of science as something like the parts of a jigsaw puzzle, which can be fitted together in one and only one way, I regard them rather as the tiny pieces of a mosaic, which can be fitted together in many ways. A new theory in an old subject is, for me, a new mosaic pattern made with the pieces taken from an older pattern.

—William H. George, The Scientist in Action

Written by nevalalee

December 21, 2018 at 7:30 am

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