A Comprehensive Dual Bibliography of James P. Blaylock & Tim Powers
November 20, 2011
The new Argent Leaf Press book, A Comprehensive Dual Bibliography of James P. Blaylock & Tim Powers (ISBN 978-0-9767486-0-1), has been in the works for over five years, and is being released in a limited, handmade edition in 2011.
The bibliography contains comprehensive information about the books and other publications issued by and about two of the most collectible Science Fiction and Fantasy authors in history. Tim Powers is a two-time World Fantasy Award winner, and his novel, On Stranger Tides, was optioned for adaptation into the fourth Pirates of the Caribbean film, eponymously-named “On Stranger Tides.” James P. Blaylock is a Philip K. Dick and World Fantasy Award winner. The two authors met during college and collaborated on a literary joke wherein they alternated writing verses of preposterous poems under the name “William Ashbless,” and later both independently used that name for characters in some of their early novels. Both authors were also friends with influential Sci-Fi author, Philip K. Dick, as well as novelist K.W. Jeter. (Jeter is credited with coining the name of the Steampunk genre when describing the alternative, Victorian era historical novels written by Blaylock, Jeter and Powers.)
James P. Blaylock and Tim Powers continued collaborating with each other since their college days, as well as independently publishing books and short stories over time. The works of both authors were published by a number of trade and rare book publishers in a variety of states, in addition to many foreign editions. They also provided forewards and afterwards in various books, both for each other as well as for the works of numerous other authors of fantastic fiction.
As two of the most prolific and collectible authors in the history of Science Fiction and Fantasy, it made great sense to writer Chris Silver Smith to write a dual bibliography that would document the works of Blaylock and Powers, simultaneously. The result is a tour-de-force which explores the lives and careers of both authors and their circles of friends.
The bibliography not only includes a careful description of the authors’ works, with each state carefully described for book collectors and rare book dealers, it also contains a few brief biographies of the authors and some notable individuals involved with their publishing history, and a few essays by and about the authors. The bibliography extensively documents not only the works authored by the duo, but also other’s works where they contributed forwards and afterwards, anthologies and periodicals which included their short stories, published interviews and reviews of them and their works, program guides from conventions where they were guests and speakers, various ephemera they released (including the famous William Ashbless poems they co-published), related books which may have provided key inspirations to them, and other reference works which also documented their books.
The annotated bibliography also provides commentary upon notable aspects of their works, and in some cases provides original research conducted by bibliographer Chris Silver Smith which more thoroughly establishes truer limitation numbers for some of the rarest works published by the two authors.
Both authors contributed works to the bibliography. Tim Powers provided a brief op-ed essay he wrote in 1989 for a Los Angeles area newspaper, in which he described inhumane treatment of the homeless by local authorities. James P. Blaylock also provided a couple of articles about a cabin he owned in the woods, and his eccentric neighbors there.
Two of the authors’ friends provided anecdotal articles about them — Christopher Arena wrote “Thursday Nights In Alville: A Reflection on Tim Powers,” in which he recounted social gatherings that Tim and his wife, Serena, used to host in their apartment in Santa Ana. Amy Sterling Casil, an established author in her own right, provided “A Corn Cob Pope: Or, Being An Appreciation Of James P. Blaylock,” in which she recounted memories about Blaylock when she came to know him while she attended and worked at Chapman University in Orange.
The bibliography itself was designed to be a collectible book in its own right. The book is being released in a hand-bound, deluxe leather edition, limited to 50 “numbered States”, and 14 “Holy Grail” presentation copies. These books were completely designed by Chris Silver Smith and were hand-sewn and hand-bound by him, with a few original illustrations by him which are interpretive depictions of aspects of stories by Powers and Blaylock. Each book features a Pirate’s Gold doubloon† inset into its cover, and is signed by all contributors, including the editor (James P. Blaylock, Tim Powers, Christopher Arena, Amy Sterling Casil, Chris Silver Smith, and Chris Irby).
|A Comprehensive Dual Bibliography of James P. Blaylock & Tim Powers – Deluxe Limited Ed. – $425.00|
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