Philip K. Dick Goes Mainstream

In 2007 The Library of America will be publishing a collection of four Philip K. Dick stories from the 1960’s: The Man in the High Castle, The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? and Ubik. The book will be edited by Jonathan Lethem.

Related: GalleyCat has responses from various genre authors about what other writers besides PKD they’d install in the Library’s canon of great American literature.

5 thoughts on “Philip K. Dick Goes Mainstream”

  1. Most of the suggestions in the article from GalleyCat are good, but can be invalidated in one of two wasys: (1) The author is alive. I think LOA concentrates only on former American authors! ;-) (2) The author has a darn fine anthology or three from another source such as NESFA (Hal Clement, Cordwainer Smith, for example). Rather than create Yet Another Megathology, how about we support the small presses such as Night Shade, NESFA, Wildside, Meisha Merlin, Haffner and more that are doing such a good job of preseving our SF literary past? And let’s not forget the Classic SF line at Baen Books. They have a Cordwainer Smith collection out now, it isn’t everything, but it is darn fine. :O

  2. “GalleyCat has responses from various genre authors about what other writers besides PKD they’d install in the Library’s canon of great American literature…”

    Is it just me, or do other SFF fans out there think the mainstream literature is the dry and dying backwater, and that SFF is vibrant and alive? I cannot recall the last time there were Harry-Potter-style midnight parties at bookstores to celebration the publication of a mainstream book. I cannot recall a whole generation welcoming any mainstream book the way LORD OF THE RINGS or STRANGER IN A STRANGE LAND was welcomed. I cannot recall a mainstream book that changed the way we think and talk about politics the way it was changed by NINETEEN-EIGHTY FOUR.

    Why are we trying to get genre books noticed by mainstream literary organs? They should be trying to attract our interest, not the other way around.

  3. “Why are we trying to get genre books noticed by mainstream literary organs? They should be trying to attract our interest, not the other way around.”

    Because miscegeny is good.

  4. “I cannot recall the last time there were Harry-Potter-style midnight parties at bookstores to celebration the publication of a mainstream book.”

    Well, there was all that hoopla last week for the new Pynchon, but then I’m of the opinion that it’s a science-fiction novel.

    On a more serious note, Fred makes an excellent point about what’s available in good paperback editions *right now*, but I think there’s room in the marketplace for both affordable and “collectible” editions of certain classic works. And I’ll admit, when I was figuring out how to build a Bradbury short story collection for the Library, I finally figured, heck, why not just go with that 100-story collection that’s already out?

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