rich wrote:but I think it may have something to do with HE is a better writer than the usual science fiction reader can grasp. At least that's what I think he thinks.
Which manifests itself in many forewords and introductions in which he presents himself as the tour guide to his own museum. This story I wrote in 1956, under such an such conditions, it's about guilt, and pay particular attention to the ending and the subtle use of expletives. In order to sell books and experience validation, he does have to prove his talent to those who have none, which he indicated is his struggle. There is no doubt, I think, especially not to us here at S.P.I.D.E.R, that he's basically correct in his assumptions about the average reader, especially now that most of them are so much younger than him.
Gwyneth wrote:Meeting the common fans would be a disappointment would then be a double whammy because not only do they have the affront of not being educated enough to appreciate good genre writing when they read it, but also not reaching for that GREAT thing within themselves and instead being mere CONSUMERS instead of PRODUCERS like Harlan is.
Gwyneth, I doubt that's the case, although I also seem to remember him once expressing sentiments to that effect, probably in the guise of a story. (Does anyone remember which one that was?) Harlan takes a lot of pride in his profession, but I don't think he wants talentless people to become artists and flood the market even more. If I understand him correctly, what he generally would like is that people be more alert and active, less accepting, more in control of their own lives. They need not produce art, but a decent society.
Note: I have to correct Carstonio, "Xenogenesis" was first collected in "Over the Edge", it's an old one. (Probably good news for Gwyneth.) Harlan also wrote sort of a letter to the fans in the form of his FL installment #4, reprinted in "An Edge in My Voice".
Gwyneth: I grew up on Tintin, like any decent German.
P.S. Guys, let's not discuss fandom itself, except if you want to do it in the general forum.