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“I Have an Idea for a Book”

26 Aug

I first met Martin H. Greenberg. He was the Guest of Honor at a PULPCON in Dayton Ohio in 2004; the guest of honor was was Ed Hoch. Marti and I struck up the conversation and he was enthusiastic about the books I had at my table, and then mentioned he might a book for me to publish. He explained that it was his bibliography. He noted there was still much left to do, including the addition of the many foreign language editions, and reprints of the original anthologies. He sent me his working file after we returned home. We kept in touch by telephone; Marti informed me that he was diagnosed with cancer, but he was still working on his book. He was hospitalized at one point, and I wished him well. Martin passed away in June 1991. I learned of his death by reading his obit in Locus Magazine in August 2011. I called his widow Rosalind, and we met for dinner in Green Bay Wisconsin in September 2011, and we agreed to publish Martins Bibliography. It had a provisional title: “Reprinted with the Permission of …” and the 2004 version was 300 pages; Rosalind handed over the file that Martin had on his computer at the time of his death and it was just shy of 500 pages. Rosalind invited John Helfers, Martin’s right hand man for 17 years to edit the volume and bring it up to date. In July 2012, I got a file from John with 200 pages of additions, corrections and a couple of deletions. These are were integrated and a further proof to John resulted in a further 28 pages of emendation, all duly integrated. I suggested to Rosalind that some kindly caricatures of Martin might serve as frontispieces to each of the major genre sections. Rosalind commissioned Eric Jorgensen to create them and they are included. Roslind observed that the title was somewhat inapproriate; it would be for Martin early anthologies, but over the the last 15 years the anthologies consisted of many new works commissioned by Martin. The title of the book was changed to “I have an Idea for a Book.” It will be released in Chicago at Chicon 7 later this week.

The creation of an index proved very problematic. The length of the index would be as long as the book, and perhaps a little longer, as each entry is very dense with information suitable for indexing. The electronic index is indeed the book itself as an Adobe pdf file, which is fully catalogued and indexed.

                                 “I Have an Idea for a Book”

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