By Bud Webster

Cyril With an M (or, I'm As Kornbluth as Kansas in August)

With this, my first installment of Past Masters for Baen's Universe (the eleventh overall, with the previous ten residing in the Helix SF archives if you're interested), I've reached something of a milestone. A small one, perhaps, but there it is nonetheless. As is customary with milestones, I'd like to pause here and take stock. Bear with me, I'll get to our primary subject anon.

Much as I loved (and still do love) Helix, JBU offers a larger readership, a venue which isn't struggling to establish itself, and a far more visible storefront from which I can operate. For my purposes, this is important.

My intent with PM has always been to highlight the history of sf and fantasy, a topic which has long fascinated me and to which I've returned over and over, with this column and others as well. Specifically, PM has dealt with authors, and even more specifically, those authors who seemed to have slipped from the Mass Consciousness (as well as the mass market) because their work has been allowed to fall out of print—out of print, out of mind.

In some cases, this is hardly a tragedy (I won't mention names, lest I become inundated by letters of protest from the one or two others out there who remember them more fondly than I), but in many cases it's not only a tragedy but a travesty. If this were a Perfect Universe, for example, Alfred Bester would remain in print eternally, translated into as many languages as is necessary to ensure that every sentient entity on the face of the planet had a copy of his complete works. (I would add that his books and stories should by law be transmuted into any and all alien languages we may happen upon in the future, but no; boasting doesn't become us.)

Since I first began writing seriously about sf and fantasy, I've frequently found myself moaning and grousing that I really should have started doing this stuff 25 or more years ago, when more of the subjects were still above ground, willing (and able) to answer questions. The reality, of course, is that a quarter of a century ago I wasn't nearly the writer I am today; more important than that, though—not to mention more frustrating—is that 25 years ago, I wouldn't have had to write about Fredric Brown, or Zenna Henderson, or Cordwainer Smith, or all the others, because 25 years ago they hadn't been forgotten.

They were still in print in the mass market then, you see; they were being read not only by their old fans, but by legions of newer fans who either happened upon their books by accident or who were guided towards them by their friends. Their titles might not have sold like the then-current stars' did, but they sold steadily enough that publishers who were raking in the bucks on Delany and Zelazny and Dick and Haldeman were more than willing to settle for their Elders' slower—but still profitable—sales.

Oh, the small- and fan-presses try their best. NESFA, for example, makes a point of publishing well-edited and handsome volumes of older authors' complete short works, and keeping them in print as long as they can sell a few copies a year. This is more than commendable, it's remarkable, and I salute them.

But it's not the mass market, not by a long chalk, and try as I will to understand the pressures of Big Business and the Bottom Line, I can only do so intellectually. In my heart, I still grieve that I can't drive to Borders and buy a new copy of Richard Meredith's brilliant novel, We All Died at Breakaway Station, or Spinrad's wonderful collection, The Last Hurrah of the Golden Horde.

That I'm 25 years too late for definitive answers to many of the questions I'd love to ask my Elders (and Betters) is hard enough to bear. That those self-same Elders, pioneers in the field we come here to celebrate, are falling further and further away from the Mass Consciousness which once revered them is unacceptable. Thus, Past Masters, as well as anything else on the general subject that I can get away with (and, hopefully, get paid for).

Anyway (as Mort Sahl would say), onward. My subject this time around, Cyril M. Kornbluth, wasn't born with an M in his name. According to Frederik Pohl (who ought to know) he added it when he decided to write in collaboration with his wife, Mary. Just how many of Kornbluth's fifty or so stories were, in fact, written that way I don't know; it's entirely possible that, like Henry Kuttner and his spouse Catherine L. Moore, the collaborations were subtle and indirect as often as they were active exchanges.

Kornbluth was born in 1923. He made his first bones at age 17, selling "Stepsons of Mars"—a collaboration with Richard Wilson under the pseudonym Ivar Towers—to Pohl's Astonishing Stories for the April, 1940 issue, and followed this with his first solo story, "King Cole of Pluto" (as by S. D. Gottesman) in the May, 1940 Super Science, also edited by Pohl.

If you're paying close attention, you should have noticed two things by now: first, that CMK wasn't at all adverse to using pseudonyms, both with others and by himself, and that he hung around with the baddest literary gang this side of the Algonquin Hotel, the Futurians.

I'm going to assume that you already know about the Futurians. If you don't, I suggest you Google them directly; without argument, they were the single most important group—fan or pro—in the early history of science fiction. I'm not exaggerating here, even a little bit. The Futurians produced a significant number of writers, editors, and agents, not to mention an equally significant number of feuds, dalliances, schisms, and life-long friendships. Frankly, I suspect that it would be impossible to overestimate their influence on the burgeoning field of magazine science fiction, and they would continue to do so as individuals well into the 1970s.

(For those of you whose interest is piqued, allow me to point you to a couple of books written by those who were there: The Way the Future Was by Frederik Pohl, an indispensable personal history by one of the most important figures in SF, and The Futurians by Damon Knight, hardly a figure of lesser stature. Budzilla sez, get into 'em.)

Kornbluth was a good fit with the Futurians, for all that he was in his mid-teens when he first began hanging around them. He was opinionated, brash, wry and witty, and boiling with the compulsion to contribute to science fiction, not just read it. And that he did, for all that his catalog isn't as extensive as many of his fellows'; 90 or so short stories, a dozen novels, much of it in collaboration with one or another writer (mostly Pohl, or another Futurian). Take a look at one single year in the biblio at the end of this installment: more than two dozen stories in 1941 alone, and in many cases, two stories in the same issue under different names. This, clearly, was a man trying to prove himself.

Numbers aren't everything, however. In fact, an author's prolificacy is meaningless in the long run if s/he has little of sum and substance to say; look at Lionel Fanthorpe or Barbara Cartland. They certainly filled their editors' in-boxes, but how widely are they read now?

Kornbluth was all about sum and substance, crafting near-perfect little gems that could cut you to ribbons if you didn't handle them carefully. The contents of The Best of C. M. Kornbluth (ed. Frederik Pohl, Ballantine 1976) give the reader plenty of opportunities for such self-injury, all of them as rewarding as they are cynical, as entertaining as they are scornful.

No accident, this. In his introduction to the above, Pohl described his old friend as "a sardonic soul," and said his work ". . . relates to the essential hypocrisies and foolishnesses of mankind." Well, yeah. Even a brief examination of his stories—"The Marching Morons," "The Little Black Bag," and his novel The Syndic are typical—offer a particularly jaundiced view of the Great Unwashed.

This factor has a particular and peculiar effect on the reader: either you get it, and you have a really good time, or you don't—and you end up scratching your head and wondering what all the fuss is about. I'm serious about this; the reader who "gets" Kornbluth will more than once find him/herself snorting and saying, "Yeah, ain't that th' truth!"

That's a bit of an oversimplification, of course. Even if you don't agree with Kornbluth's amused contempt at the majority of the Human Race, his skill as a writer is engaging and admirable. I'm far less of a gleeful pessimist than he was, and he's always been one of my favorites.

Take one of his most famous stories, for example. If there is a typical Kornbluthian story, it is "The Marching Morons" (originally in the 4/51 Galaxy). It begins with a character sincerely near and dear to Kornbluth's heart, a potter. The opening scene works as well as it does primarily because Mary Kornbluth, his wife, was a potter and ceramicist, and the details are spot-on as a result.

The character isn't just any potter, though, I should point out. Not only is he skilled in shaping and glazing his wares, he's also an engineer/physicist, and almost certainly a half-dozen or more other brainy-mug specialties. So is the secretary of the man who ostensibly buys his pots, although the buyer himself is . . . well, a moron.

And that's the point of this gleefully dark little yarn. The human race has split into proto-Eloi and proto-Morlocks, with the (comparative) handful of brains actually running things while the morons take the credit and drive their noisy, flashy cars. All is well, until the potter—in search of mineral deposits to use in making glazes—digs up "Honest John" Barlow, a real estate mogul who went to the dentist for an impacted wisdom tooth (note the irony there) and was accidentally thrown into a state of suspended animation.

What was, in the past, an accident with no foreseeable solution turns out to be child's play for the non-morons of the future, and Barlow is awakened to find his old world gone to dust, and this new one faced with the Problem: what to do with the moronic portion of the population? What, indeed, and if you haven't yet read this nasty little tale, I won't spoil it for you; it's way more fun if you read it for yourself.

As I mentioned, Frederik Pohl knew Kornbluth from an early age, and the two men took to writing early on. He told me:

I think Cyril wanted to be a writer at an age when most of us did, in his early teens. His first efforts, or at least the first I knew anything about, weren't stories. They were poems.

Pohl himself was no stranger to poetry, and in fact, his first professional publication was the verse "Elegy to a Dead Satellite: Luna," published in the October 1937 Amazing under the name Elton V. Andrews. The two youngsters acquired a book by one of Kornbluth's teachers which gave the rules for writing just about every type of poem there is and were determined to try their hand at all of them:

We made a good start, actually writing haiku (we spelled it hokku), a villanelle, a sestina, two sonnets (one Petrarchian and one Shakespearian) and I think a couple of others. We bogged down when it came to the chant royale (the chant royale is HARD) and, like most of the other Futurians, we decided to try our luck with science fiction. At that time I think Cyril was maybe 14, and I three or four years later.

The plain truth is that there is precious little of the sympathetic in Kornbluth's work, and not a drop of sentimentality. There is, if you want it, plenty of bitterness, but that alone wouldn't mean much: if you look hard enough, there's no lack of acerbic wit out there in Fantasyland, even in those writers not particularly known for it. Bitterness by itself is just a bad taste; what makes Kornbluth's prose memorable and gratifying is the skill with which he expresses his bitterness, and that is a rarity.

I'm talking about elegance. Elegance of prose, more specifically. Not just an economy of words, although that can be part of it, but using the optimum word or phrase for the task at hand. I could give you example after example: Bradbury's "It was a pleasure to burn," Vonnegut's "Billy Pilgrim was unstuck in time," Cordwainer Smith's . . . well, take your pick.

Kornbluth is eat-up with elegance, it's there almost everywhere you look. Not necessarily poetry, mind you—despite his early experimentation, there's little of the poetic in his work—but there is, nevertheless, an elegance born of his innate (and integral) sardonicism. Consider this, from "The Marching Morons:"

Lying twisted and broken under the acceleration, [he] realized that some things had not changed, that Jack Ketch was never asked to dinner however many shillings you paid him to do your dirty work, that murder will out, that crime pays only temporarily.

The last thing he learned was that death is the end of pain.

Only Kornbluth could have expressed the death of a soulless and cynical character so elegantly, at least in the still mostly-Campbellian SF world of 1951. Perhaps it's just as valid, though, to say that only Kornbluth would have found it desirable to do so.

I said above that there was little if any poetry in his writing, but that's not strictly true across the board. Like all fine writers, Kornbluth defies attempts to stuff him into convenient pigeonholes, even mine. He did it rarely, he did it for specific and precise effect, and he did it without fanfare or flash, as in this from "The Remorseful" (from Star Science Fiction Stories 2, ed. Frederik Pohl, Ballantine 1953):

It does not matter when it happened. This is because the Visitors were eternal; endless time stretched before them and behind, which mentions only two of the infinities that their "lives" included. Precisely when they arrived at a particular planetary system was to them the most trivial of irrelevancies. Eternity was theirs; eventually they would have arrived at all of them.

Lovely. Just lovely. No sentiment, nothing wistful or nostalgic or lugubrious; just a few lines of quiet prose admirably constructed to express a concept using the optimum words for the task at hand. Elegance.

What of the man behind this elegance, though? That's rather complicated, I'm afraid, and not a little unfortunate as well. Pohl, probably Kornbluth's closest friend and his frequent collaborator, is perhaps the least likely to express a negative estimation, even though he was lampooned severely in Gunner Cade [1], which was written during one of their occasional rifts. He says in his introduction to The Best of C. M. Kornbluth:

There is a character in the book who is pitifully corrupt and whiningly ineffectual. It is not an accident that the character's name is what Judy's first daughter called me when she was first learning to talk: Threadwick.

"Sardonic," indeed. Others weren't nearly so forgiving. In a letter to Isaac Asimov dated after Kornbluth's death, John W. Campbell said, "His anger against the ways of the culture he didn't fit too well produced cumulative bitterness in him."

Author and critic Barry Malzberg goes even further:

Kornbluth's nastiness is remarked on by everyone who knew him at all. He was deeply embittered by his experience in the War and by his economic struggles after the War. Don Wollheim...told me, "Cyril was so bitter in his last year that you knew that either the world would have to go away or he would. There was no compromise possible."

(Wollheim himself was at least once a Kornbluth collaborator. The January 1953 F&SF contained "The Mask of Demeter," as by Cecil Corwin and Martin Pearson; Corwin was a frequent pseudonym of Kornbluth's, and Pearson was Wollheim. How the story—actually, a story fragment—came to be published at all is one of a number of deplorable incidents Kornbluth suffered during his short life. It was sold to Boucher and McComas not by either of the authors, or by Kornbluth's agent, the ever-present Pohl, but by an agent who had no rights to it. [2] Needless to say, Kornbluth knew nothing of it until it appeared, and found it extremely difficult to collect his due; all in all, it was just another brick in the wall.)

That such a body of work as Kornbluth left behind was written by a man so cynical and angry is remarkable, frankly. It puts him in a class with Anthony Burgess and Kurt Vonnegut, without their literary pretensions (don't forget that Vonnegut, for all his rejection of the genre, began his career selling to Galaxy and Wonder Stories like every other sci-fi hack he so despised).

His noteworthiness wasn't limited to his sour outlook, though. His stories may lack sentimentality, but they certainly don't lack humanity. The titular object in "The Little Black Bag" transforms its finder, Dr. Full, from a shattered drunk into a man again capable of feeling something other than a desperate need for another bottle of wine, back into a physician with the firm intent to use the contents of the magic case to do once again what he had always done best: heal the sick. Simple bitterness wouldn't give an author the range to create that character and make him breathe; it takes a clear understanding of, as well as a real affection for, people.

Kornbluth himself might have been horrified to hear me say that, but nevertheless I'm convinced that he had more love for his fellows than he was ever comfortable expressing, either in fiction or in person.

The exception to this was almost certainly his family. Clearly he and his wife Mary loved each other deeply; the year following his death, she assembled a slim anthology, Science Fiction Showcase (Doubleday 1959), containing stories by a number of his friends including Futurians Damon Knight, James Blish, and the ever-present Pohl, as well as Bradbury, Philip K. Dick, and Theodore Sturgeon among others as a tribute to her late husband. It is a quiet, but heart-felt little book, well worth the reading even now, a half-century later.

CMK was an infantryman in WWII, fighting in the Battle of the Bulge and winning the Bronze Star. However, his injuries stayed with him for the rest of his too-short life, adding yet another brick to that already daunting wall.

After the war, he went into journalism, working his way up to the position of editor of the Chicago office of Trans-Radio Press and busting his hump to find that elusive thing that all penny-a-word scriveners lusted for and few found: a regular paycheck as a writer. He went back to writing fiction full-time in 1951, producing almost all of his best-known work, including a number of novels both solo and in collaboration.

Although he was making better money than before, the memories of his days with the miss-meal cramps loomed like the Sword of Damocles over his head, and he looked for something within his range of skills. Pohl relates:

Although Cyril was doing reasonably well in economic terms a writer's income come sin lumps of various sizes at irregular times and (w/ two kids) he felt the need of a more regular income. He was offered an assistant editor job on F&SF, which he liked a lot. (He was delighted with some of the pieces he passed along to Bob Mills, particularly Fritz Leiber's "The Silver Eggheads".)

Unfortunately, his involvement with the magazine was not fated to be a long one. Early in the spring of 1958, he was scheduled to meet with Mills in NYC. It had snowed heavily at his home in Levittown, and he rushed to shovel out his drive before running to the station to catch his train. He was struck by a heart attack on the platform, and died there, age 35.

His death came at an age when most writers are just beginning to hit their stride and create mature, lasting bodies of work. Considering the maturity and complexity of the stories and novels he left behind, it's humbling to contemplate what he could have produced given even another few decades. Not only was he popular with the readers, but with the critics as well. In his Hugo-winning history of science fiction, Trillion Year Spree (Atheneum 1986), Brian Aldiss calls Kornbluth's passing ". . . a minor disaster . . ."; of his erudition and (if I may repeat myself) elegance of language, Damon Knight said:

Kornbluth must have been born with a lexicon in his mouth. Legend has it that once, when a motherly stranger bent over him in his perambulator and made the sounds that are usually made to babies, Kornbluth remarked, "Madame, I am not the child you think me."

The three books which make up the two volumes of that most excellent collection, The Science Fiction Hall of Fame (eds. Robert Silverberg and Ben Bova, Doubleday 1970 and 1973), contain stories which were chosen by the members of the SFWA as being worthy of the Nebula had it existed when those stories were originally published. Although he died before the founding of the Science-Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America and thus would never win the Nebula, Cyril M. Kornbluth is represented twice therein with—what else?—"The Little Black Bag" and "The Marching Morons."

Summing up a remarkable author like Kornbluth in a few words is a difficult task, one best left (in this case, anyhow) to someone who knew him well, and whose understanding of the man and his work is far greater than mine could ever be, so I will leave you with the words with which Frederik Pohl ended his appreciation of his friend and colleague in The Best of C. M. Kornbluth:

As a person he was what he was as a writer: bright, sardonic, and immensely rewarding. Cyril had a great deal to say, and he said it all tersely, wittily, and with grace. I do not think we shall soon see his like again.

Nor do I. If you are unfamiliar with this outstanding man's books and stories, I urge you to haunt the used bookstores and convention dealers' tables, and to assiduously pore over the offerings of the on-line booksellers for his titles. It will not be a waste of your time or money. Budzilla sez so.

The following bibliography is, as usual, as complete as I can make it given the print and online resources to which I have access. Also as usual, I welcome any and all additions and corrections. Because of the number of collaborations and pseudonyms herein, I have opted to list all the stories together in chronological order rather than breaking it up. Just to keep my sanity, I have placed an arbitrary cut-off coinciding with the publication of The Best of C. M. Kornbluth, i.e. 1976. In addition to those listed below, he also used the following pennames: Earl Balons, Gabriel Barclay, Alistair Bevan, and Carl F. Burke.

Short Stories and Articles

"Stepsons of Mars"—April 1940 Astonishing Stories (w/ Richard Wilson, as by Ivar Towers)

"King Cole of Pluto"—May 1940 Super Science Stories (as by S. D. Gottesman)

"Before the Universe"—July 1940 Super Science Stories (w/ Frederik Pohl, as by S. D. Gottesman)

"Nova Midplane"—November 1940 Super Science Stories (w/ Frederik Pohl, as by S. D. Gottesman)

"Trouble in Time"—December 1940 Astonishing Stories (w/ Frederik Pohl, as by S. D. Gottesman)

"Vacant World"—January 1941 Super Science Stories (w/ Frederik Pohl and Dirk Wylie, under Wylie's name)

"Dead Center"—February 1941 Stirring SF (as by S. D. Gottesman)

"Thirteen O'Clock"—February 1941 Stirring SF (as by Cecil Corwin)

"Callistan Tomb"—Spring 1941 SF Quarterly (w/ Frederik Pohl, as by Paul Dennis Lavond

"The Psychological Regulator"—March 1941 Comet Stories (w/ E. Balter, Robert W. Lowndes, John Michel, and Wollheim, as by Arthur Cooke)

"The Martians Are Coming"—March 1941 Cosmic Stories (w/ Robert W. Lowndes, under Lowndes' name)

"New Directions"—March 1941 Cosmic Stories (article, as by Walter C. Davies)

"Return from M-15"—March 1941 Cosmic Stories (as by S. D. Gottesman)

"The Reversible Revolutions"—March 1941 Cosmic Stories (as by Cecil Corwin)

"Exiles of New Planet"—April 1941 Astonishing Stories (w/ Frederik Pohl, Robert W. Lowndes and Dirk Wylie, as by Paul Dennis Lavond)

"The Rocket of 1955"—April 1941 Stirring SF (as by Cecil Corwin)

"The Castle on the Outerplanet"—April 1941 Stirring SF (w/ Frederik Pohl and Robert W. Lowndes, as by S. D. Gottesman)

"A Prince of Pluto"—April 1941 Future SF (w/ Frederik Pohl, as by Paul Dennis Lavond)

"Best Friend"—May 1941 Super Science Stories (w/ Frederik Pohl, as by S. D. Gottesman)

"Dimension of Darkness"—May 1941 Cosmic Stories (as by S. D. Gottesman)

"What Sorghum Says"—May 1941 Cosmic Stories (as by Cecil Corwin)

"Forgotten Tongue"—June 1941 Stirring SF (as by Walter C. Davies)

"Kazam Collects"—June 1941 Stirring SF (as by S. D. Gottesman)

"Mr. Packer Goes to Hell"—June 1941 Stirring SF (as by Cecil Corwin)

"The Words of Guru"—June 1941 Stirring SF (as by Kenneth Falconer)

"Fire Power"—July 1941 Cosmic Stories (as by S. D. Gottesman)

"Interference—July 1941 Cosmic Stories (as by Walter C. Davies)

"The City in the Sofa"—July 1941 Cosmic Stories (as by Cecil Corwin)

"Mars-Tube"—September 1941 Astonishing Stories (w/ Frederik Pohl, as by S. D. Gottesman)

"Sir Mallory's Magnitude"—Winter 1941-42 SF Quarterly (as by S. D. Gottesman)

"Crisis!"—Spring 1942 SF Quarterly (as by Cecil Corwin)

"Einstein's Planetoid"—Spring 1942 SF Quarterly (w/ Frederik Pohl, Robert W. Lowndes and Dirk Wylie, as by Paul Dennis Lavond)

"The Golden Road"—March 1942 Stirring SF (as by Cecil Corwin)

"Masquerade"—March 1942 Stirring SF (as by Kenneth Falconer)

"The Perfect Invasion"—March 1942 Stirring SF (as by S. D. Gottesman)

"The Core"—April 1942 Future SF (as by S. D. Gottesman)

"An Old Neptunian Custom"—August 1942 Super Science Stories (w/ Frederik Pohl, as by Scott Mariner)

"The Only Thing We Learn"—July 1949 Startling Stories

"The Little Black Bag"—July 1950 Astounding

"Iteration"—September/October 1950 Future

"The Silly Season"—Fall 1950 F&SF

"The Extrapolated Dimwit"—October 1942 Future SF (w/ Frederik Pohl and Robert W. Lowndes, as by S. D. Gottesman)

"The Mindworm"—December 1950 Worlds Beyond

"The Rocket of 1955"—February 1951 Worlds Beyond

"Friend to Man"—Spring 1951 Thrilling Wonder Stories

"The Marching Morons"—April 1951 Galaxy

"Mars Child"—serial, May-July 1951 Galaxy (w/ Judith Merril, as by Cyril Judd)

"With These Hands"—December 1951 Galaxy

"That Share of Glory"—January 1952 Astounding

"Gunner Cade"—serial, March-May 1952 Astounding (w/ Judith Merril, as by Cyril Judd)

"The Luckiest Man in Denv"—June 1952 Galaxy (as by Simon Eisner)

"Gravy Planet"—serial, June-August 1952 Galaxy (w/ Frederik Pohl)

"Make Mine Mars"—November 1952 SF Adventures

"The Altar at Midnight"—November 1952 Galaxy

"The Goodly Creatures"—December 1952 F&SF

"The Mask of Demeter"—January 1953 F&SF (as by Cecil Corwin and Martin Pearson, pseuds. of Kornbluth and Donald Wollheim respectively)

"Time Bum"—January/February 1953 Fantastic

"Sea Change"—March 1953 Dynamic SF (w/ Judith Merril, as by Cyril Judd)

"The Adventurer"—May 1953 Space SF

"Dip Detail"—July 1953 Private Eye (mystery)

"The Meddlers"—September 1953 SF Adventures

"Everybody Knows Joe"—October/November 1953 Future

"The Syndic"—serial, December 1953-February 1954 SF Adventures (w/ Judith Merril, as by Cyril Judd)

"I Never Ast No Favors"—April 1954 F&SF

"Takeoff"—serial, April-June 1954 New Worlds (#22-24)

"Gladiator At Law"—serial, June-August 1954 Galaxy (w/ Frederik Pohl)

"Dominoes"—in Star SF Stories, ed. Frederik Pohl; Ballantine 16 (simul. h'back and p'back), 1953

"The Remorseful"—in Star SF Stories #2, ed. Frederik Pohl; Ballantine 55 (simul. h'back and p'back), 1954

"The Adventurers"—February 1955 SF Quarterly

"Gomez"—February 1955 New Worlds (#32)

"Not This August"—serial, May-June 1955 MacLean's

"The Mindworm"—November 1955 Science Fantasy (#16)

"The Cosmic Charge Account"—January 1956 F&SF

"The Engineer"—February 1956 Infinity (w/ Frederik Pohl)

"The Education of Tigress Macardle"—July 1957 Venture

"MS. Found In a Chinese Fortune Cookie"—July 1957 F&SF

"The Unfortunate Topologist"—verse, July 1957 F&SF (as by S. D. Gottesman)

"The Slave"—September 1957 SF Adventures

"The Last Man Left in the Bar"—October 1957 Infinity

"Wolfbane"—serial, October-November 1957 Galaxy (w/ Frederik Pohl)

"Requiem for a Scientist"—article, December 1957 Fantastic Universe

"The Events Leading Down to the Tragedy"—January 1958 F&SF

"Virginia"—March 1958 Venture

"Reap the Dark Tide"—June 1958 Venture

"Theory of Rocketry"—July 1958 F&SF

"Two Dooms"—July 1958 Venture

"The Advent on Channel Twelve"—in Star SF Stories #4, ed. Frederik Pohl; Ballantine 272K, 1958

"Nightmare With Zeppelins"—December 1958 Galaxy (w/ Frederick Pohl)

"The Core"—December 1959 Future (as by S. D. Gottesman)

"Blood on the Campus"—September 1960 Mammoth Mystery (mystery)

"A Gentle Dying"—June 1961 Galaxy (w/ Frederik Pohl)

"The Quaker Cannon"—August 1961 Astounding (w/ Frederik Pohl)

"The World of Myrion Flowers"—October 1961 F&SF (w/ Frederik Pohl)

"Critical Mass"—February 1962 Galaxy (w/ Frederik Pohl)

Collections and Novels

Gunner Cade—w/ Judith Merril, as by Cyril Judd; Simon & Schuster 1952; Ace D-277, 1957

Naked Storm—as by Simon Eisner; Lion 109, 1952 (mystery)

Outpost Mars—w/ Judith Merril, as by Cyril Judd; Abelard, 1952; Dell 760, 1954

Half—as by Jordan Park; Lion 135, 1953 (mystery)

Takeoff—Doubleday, 1952; Pennant P15, 1953

Valerie—as by Jordan Park; Lion 176, 1953 (mystery)

Space Merchants—w/ Frederik Pohl; Ballantine 21 (simul. h'back and p'back), 1952

The Syndic—Doubleday, 1953; Bantam 1317, 1955

The Explorers—Ballantine 86, 1954 (coll.)

Search the Sky—w/ Frederik Pohl; Ballantine 61 (simul. h'back and p'back), 1954

Gladiator-at-Law—w/ Frederik Pohl; Ballantine 107 (simul. h'back and p'back), 1955

Mindworm and Other Stories—M. Joseph, 1955 (UK coll.)

A Town is Drowning—w/ Frederik Pohl; Ballantine 123 (simul. h'back and p'back), 1955

Not This August—Doubleday 1955; Bantam A1492, 1956

Presidential Year—w/ Frederik Pohl; Ballantine 144 (simul. h'back and p'back), 1955

Sorority House—w/ Frederik Pohl, as by Jordan Park; Lion Library 97, 1956 (lesbiana)

A Man of Cold Rages—as by Jordan Park; Pyramid G368, 1958 (mystery)

A Mile Beyond the Moon—Doubleday, 1958; McFadden 40-100, 1962 (coll.)

The Marching Morons—Ballantine 303K, 1959 (coll.)

Wolfbane—w/ Frederik Pohl; Ballantine 335K, 1959

The Wonder Effect—w/ Frederik Pohl; Ballantine F638, 1962 (coll.)

Best Science Fiction Stories—Faber, 1968 (UK coll.)

Thirteen O'Clock—ed. James Blish, Dell 8731, 1970 (coll.)

The Best of C. M. Kornbluth—SF Book Club, 1976; Ballantine 25461, 1976 (coll.)

In addition to the above, Pohl mentions two unpublished Kornbluth novels in his introduction to The Best of C. M. Kornbluth, but cites only one title: The Crater. Again, if anyone out there knows what the other title is, I invite you to share with the class.


[1] By Kornbluth and Judith Merril writing as Cyril Judd, originally serialized in three parts beginning with the March 1952 Astounding, and published later the same year in book form by Simon & Schuster

[2] Rumor has it that said agent was Wollheim himself; I have not been able to confirm this, and if it's true, there seems to be no evidence that DAW acted as agent—legit or otherwise—for anyone else except himself. I will point out, though, that the only reprint of "The Mask of Demeter" in an anthology was in Wollheim's Prize Science Fiction, published by McBride in 1953.

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