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Old 26th Sep 2010, 3:54   #1
bill
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Default Harlan Ellison

I'm starting this thread due to the recently reported sad news (if strangely vague) regarding Ellison's health, but I figure there are probably number of at least former Ellison readers around these parts, and perhaps people will have things to add here and there, down the road. I myself have much to say about the guy, but not necessarily right at this moment. He's a big figure, as artists go, in my life, specifically (though not exclusively) in my young life, for good and ill. Too big to get into now.
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Old 29th Sep 2010, 14:09   #2
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Default Re: Harlan Ellison

I'm sorry to hear about Ellison's illness. I really like a number of his stories: I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream, The Whimper of Whipped Dogs, 'Repent, Harlequin!' said the Tick-Tock Man, A Boy and His Dog and Jefty is Five are all particularly memorable. His book of TV criticism - The Glass Teat - is also excellent. He's something of a cantankerous and controversial figure within SF circles and the genre would be a poorer place without him. Hopefully this is only temporary.
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Old 29th Sep 2010, 16:11   #3
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Default Re: Harlan Ellison

Quote:
Originally Posted by Adr. View Post
I'm sorry to hear about Ellison's illness. I really like a number of his stories: I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream, The Whimper of Whipped Dogs, 'Repent, Harlequin!' said the Tick-Tock Man, A Boy and His Dog and Jefty is Five are all particularly memorable. His book of TV criticism - The Glass Teat - is also excellent.
What's interesting is that any fan who you might ask to name their favorite Ellison stories would almost certainly provide that very list. The Ellison stories that are deemed the best seem to be pretty set in stone, with no disagreement, and no attempts to add, say, "Tired Old Man" or "Footsteps" as the dark horse favorite, or remove "Jeffty is Five" because it's overrated. Ellison's best stories are his best stories. No arguments.

Which means that I also don't argue with the official list. I just think it's interesting, given the number of stories Ellison has written over the years.
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Old 29th Sep 2010, 19:37   #4
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Default Re: Harlan Ellison

That's terrible news (obviously). Like Bill, I used to be a big Ellison fan, and even if I don't always agree with him he's always a breath of ... well, some sort of air when he speaks up on something. Think I'll have to dig up some of his stuff and re-read soon.
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Old 29th Sep 2010, 20:31   #5
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Default Re: Harlan Ellison

I don't know Ellison, but amen to this in the linked interview:

Quote:
On his unfinished work
"My wife has instructions that the instant I die, she has to burn all the unfinished stories. And there may be a hundred unfinished stories in this house, maybe more than that. There's three quarters of a novel. No, these things are not to be finished by other writers, no matter how good they are. It could be Paul Di Filippo, who is just about the best writer in America, as far as I'm concerned. Or God forbid, James Patterson or Judith Krantz should get a hold of The Man Who Looked for Sweetness, which is sitting up on my desk, and try to finish it, anticipating what Ellison was thinking -- no! Goddammit. If Fred Pohl wants to finish all of C.M. Kornbluth's stories, that's his business. If somebody wants to take the unfinished Edgar Allan Poe story, which has now gone into the public domain, and write an ending that is not as good as Poe would have written, let 'em do whatever they want! But not with my shit, Jack. When I'm gone, that's it. What's down on the paper, it says 'The End,' that's it. 'Cause right now I'm busy writing the end of the longest story I've ever written, which is me."
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