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The Society for the Preservation of Mike

[ website | John M. Ford Website ]
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Migration/archive to DW completed [Nov. 1st, 2017|04:39 pm]
The Society for the Preservation of Mike

Hi all,

With Elise's support, I've imported the existing entries and comments to https://nemesis-draco.dreamwidth.org

Any future posts and comments (including this one) will likely not be replicated over there. An unfortunate split in the conversation may arise over time.

Please feel free to join that community as well, and any of the existing owners, maintainers, moderators, please say something over there if you don't have the proper privileges.
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Dreamwidth migration? [Apr. 8th, 2017|10:06 am]
The Society for the Preservation of Mike

Should we consider moving this community?
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Once again, uncollected JMF material in a charity auction [Apr. 30th, 2015|07:15 pm]
The Society for the Preservation of Mike

The annual Con or Bust auction is ongoing (it ends Sunday) and I have a lot of ten issues of Asimov's containing stories and articles by JMF. Seven issues have material that has never been reprinted and another has a story (one of the Alternities, Inc. stories) which was only reprinted in an old Baen alt-hist anthology.

There are of course many other items of interest in the auction, as always.
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Some uncollected JMF material in a charity auction [Feb. 10th, 2014|11:41 am]
The Society for the Preservation of Mike


I have put up a small lot of JMF items in the annual Con or Bust auction.

This includes some things people here probably already have (The Dragon Waiting, Liavek: Festival Week), but also includes some old Asimov's issues with material that is not included in either Heat of Fusion or From the End of the Twentieth Century:

  • "Hot Pursuit," a story which has not ever been reprinted.

  • "Slowly By, Lorena," one of the four Alternities Inc. stories. It has only been reprinted in The Fantastic Civil War (a Baen alternate history anthology from 1991).

  • "What's Wrong with This Picture?," a collaboration with Barry Longyear and George Scithers which was only reprinted in Tales from the Spaceport Bar (a theme anthology from 1987). (The story is admittedly an extended joke.)

  • "On Playing Roles: A Second Look," one of a (short) series of role-playing game reviews. It's fairly lengthy and (I think) interesting despite its age, assuming you have any interest in RPGs. This has never been reprinted.

  • "On Opening Night at the Universe," which is about the premiere of Carl Sagan's Cosmos TV show at the National Academy of Sciences. This too has never been reprinted.

There are of course many other interesting things in the Con or Bust auction.

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It strikes me . . . [Jun. 29th, 2013|07:30 pm]
The Society for the Preservation of Mike


At one of the panels at 4th Street, someone mentioned GROWING UP WEIGHTLESS.  As I thought about it, it struck me that there are still a number of Mike's stories that haven't been collected, and as such, I haven't read.  Does anyone have a comprehensive list of what remains uncollected?

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Ahistorical Note or A Historical Note? [Dec. 29th, 2012|11:28 am]
The Society for the Preservation of Mike

The Dragon Waiting opens with a brief prologue laying out what Ford is trying to accomplish, and more importantly what he isn't.

In the hideous mass-market paperbacks this is titled "Ahistorical Note," in contrast with the "Historical Notes" at the end of the book.

In the hardback, and also I'm told in the Fantasy Masterworks edition, it's "A Historical Note."

Anyone know which is likely to be the author's preferred text? I'd vote for "Ahistorical" myself, but I really don't know.
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Ask Dr. Mike [Feb. 5th, 2012|04:34 pm]
The Society for the Preservation of Mike

("Ask Dr. Mike" was a highlight of any convention that included it. As TNH said, when she did programming for Minicon, she learned never to schedule anything opposite "Ask Dr. Mike." While most of the hour-long improv was based on questions from the live audience, Mike sometimes would put some seed questions in, just in case there was a lull. These are some of his seed questions. Dating this list is left as an exercise for the reader.)

1) I have a question about household appliances. I once read a book where scientists kept talking about the speed of light in a vacuum. How is this different from the speed of light in, say, a blender?

2) Why do some Olympic athletes inject androids into their blood stream?

3) I've been following the space program for a few years, and I have never been able to understand weightlessness. Why does gravity stop just at the place where the earth's atmosphere peters out? Is this a coincidence, or what? How does gravity work on planets like Venus that don't have any atmosphere at all?

4) How do computers sometimes work?

5) Is it true what they say about Elvis?

6) What would happen if you paint a black hole a different colour?*

7) I was watching old Superman TV shows and noticed that the Man of Steel would just stand still and let bullets bounce off his chest. However, when the crook ran out of ammunition and hurled the empty gun at him, Superman always ducked. Why didn't he just let the gun bounce off his chest too?

8) In international law, what is the legal definition of an "Evil Empire"? Why has the Soviet Union lost its Evil Empire status in the last five years?

* Colloquially, "color"
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a silly thing from the past [Feb. 5th, 2012|03:20 pm]
The Society for the Preservation of Mike

A Literary Theme Park
Over 50 Great Rides and Attractions
* The Tunnel of Angst
* The Pre-Raphaelite Water Slide
* The Haunted Villa Deodati
* Henry James's Morose-O-Rama
* Mad, Bad, and Dangerous To Know Land
* T.S. Eliot's Cathedral of Fun

Mike wrote that and handed it around at gaming one night to amuse the general populace, I do believe. Enjoy!
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Small charity auction [Jun. 28th, 2011|02:19 pm]
The Society for the Preservation of Mike

A trustworthy person is auctioning off a collection of John M. Ford books for charity - the winner can pick the charity to donate to. The auction runs until midnight CDT on July 3rd.


People without Dreamwidth accounts can bid using their LJ accounts, or e-mail telophase if that isn't working.
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JMF writing for sale [Mar. 4th, 2011|11:53 pm]
The Society for the Preservation of Mike

Two bits of news which might interest people:

1. I am auctioning copies of The Dragon Waiting, Princes of the Air, and Growing Up Weightless here to support con_or_bust. The books have all been bid on, but someone might want to bid higher. There are also lots of other things up for auction. Bidding ends Sunday March 6th at 11:59 PM EST.

2. As I believe I have mentioned here before, JMF wrote two stories set in the world of Steve Jackson Games' Car Wars. One, "Alkahest: The Deathtool Solution," has been available for free for some time (as are the game notes following it).

The other "Street Legal," has not been (and neither story has ever been reprinted as far as I know). However, the issue of Space Gamer where it appeared can be purchased as a PDF for $2.99. (The issue of Autoduel Quarterly containing "Alkahest" can also be purchased, if you want a copy that isn't yellow on black without formatting it yourself.)

I don't want to oversell this - it is after all a fairly short piece of gaming fiction (plus gaming notes). On the other hand, in the hands of John M. Ford even gaming fiction could turn into something rich and strange. So if you don't happen to own the physical magazine you might want to check it out.
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