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Talk:James H. Schmitz

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 Definition James H. Schmitz was the author of a number of remarkable science fiction novels and stories. [d] [e]
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 Workgroup category Literature [Editors asked to check categories]
 Talk Archive none  English language variant American English

Notes, things to work into the article somehow

Need to add his birth/death dates, and republication year range (1980's by Baen books).Pat Palmer (talk) 05:00, 22 July 2020 (UTC)

  • Maybe discuss the technology in the Federation of the Hub universe that turned out to be predictive, such as everyone having personal communicators. Schmitz wrote that before Star Trek depicted it.
  • Say something about Schmitz' "monsters" essay.
  • Talk about the 2 universes, and suggested order of reading them.
  • The effort to scan the books back in the 1990's.
  • German translation of Demon Breed (and other stories?) published in 2019:

GALAXIS SCIENCE FICTION, Band 21: DÄMONENBRUT: Geschichten aus der Welt von Morgen - wie man sie sich gestern vorgestellt hat. (German Edition) by James H. Schmitz | Sold by: Amazon.com Services LLC | Nov 3, 2019

  • Amazon also selling 4-book series based on Witches of Karres (books 2-4 by other authors) for $30+; whereas, Princeton Public Library has zero copies, either physical or electronic, of Schmitz works
  • Probably deserves a separate section about the accuracy of his technology predictions
  • Is there a linkage to be drawn from Schmitz' world view as expressed in the Pride of Monsters essay, along with the fact that his family just barely escaped Germany in time to avoid having to live through Hitler? Hitler was just such a monster, in many ways, brought down in the end by the fact that he became too awful and got enough good people ranged against him all at once.Pat Palmer (talk) 01:42, 7 August 2020 (UTC)
There probably is, but I dunno how you could plausibly bring it into the article.Hayford Peirce (talk) 22:03, 7 August 2020 (UTC)

Is there a James Schmitz cult, along the lines of Jack Vance?

Could easily be -- I don't follow the field much anymore except having a lifetime subscription to Locus, which I paid a hundred dollars for, I believe, around 1980, and which I have long since amortized. An issue today is $8.99 cover price, I think, so $100 covers 11 issues! Hayford Peirce (talk) 01:19, 6 August 2020 (UTC)

I don't follow the field these days either. I collected Schmitz out of print books back in the 80's, then Baen books republished most of his works so I didn't need to, and then I eventually got them all on Kindle. Which is another thing I should mention here, the effort that resulted in them all being scanned. Then Amazon made it possible to find almost anything, and I don't have the physical books any more at all. But have them all electronically. Some of these are still fun to read, surprisingly, decades later. I'm hoping to reread some of them and spruce up my familiarity.Pat Palmer (talk) 01:46, 6 August 2020 (UTC)
There is a ton of info about these works already out on the web. I just thought it would be useful to provide an updated view of them, 2020 style, and based on my life-long experience I now see them a little differently that I once did.Pat Palmer (talk) 01:54, 6 August 2020 (UTC)
Yes, let's have YOUR appraisal. Our views do change over the years. (And I'm bad enough to believe that MY views are generally better than others, hehe!) Just looked at my bookshelves, and I only have Witches there. Which, as I said, I reread and enjoyed a couple of years ago. I know that years ago I had many more of his on my shelves, but at one point in San Francisco, when my French wife and I had 5000 books in our house and we were about to move to a somewhat smaller flat, I got rid of THOUSANDS of books -- although, of course, it broke my heart to do. Apparently all the other Schmitz must have been among them.... Hayford Peirce (talk) 02:00, 6 August 2020 (UTC)
Just checked, and the Princeton, NJ, public library now has zero Schmitz books. They used to have 8 or 10. This is a sad loss, a step in the wrong direction by wrong-headed management, and all the more reason to write about them here.Pat Palmer (talk)

If Karres lost to Mistress, that's a pretty honorable defeat!

I wonder if someone (not I!) would want to do an article about how seriously crazy and biased John Campbell was? I adored him for many years, as the inventor of modern SF etc etc and discoverer of Heinlein and all the others. But as time passes, I see that how his critics of 50 years ago, like Kingsley Amis were right about him, and I was wrong. He was, really, a crackpot. For instance, and this is why I bring it up, HE was the guy who essentially invented "psionics" -- and then pushed it onto ALL of his writers, as least as much as he could. And using Scottish names, for instance, and basically The White Man's Burden, in story after story after story. RAH and Asimov rebelled, and left. Schmitz and Poul Anderson and others (there's one VERY profilic one whose name I forget at the moment) stayed and wrote story after story after story tailored to his peculiar demands. I put SOME of this info in the WP article about Analog, or Campbell, or Alfie Bester, but I don't know how much of it remains. There's a wonderful bit from Bester returning to the sanity of NYC from a lunch with Campbell in NJ.... Hayford Peirce (talk) 01:29, 7 August 2020 (UTC)

Alas my intro to sci-fi did not take place until the early 1980's, so all this took place before I had any awareness of anything, and I never knew much about that. But Analog had an outsized influence at the time; it was one of the few ways for writers to get their works out there, until later on, when publishers realized there was a market. It's fun hearing your perspective, Hayford!Pat Palmer (talk) 01:37, 7 August 2020 (UTC)