Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Planet Stories Feature Flash - Leigh Brackett

Planet Stories, Winter 1942, (Nov 1942, W. Scott Peacock, Love Romances Publishing Co., Inc.; New York, $0.20, 128pp,

(This is from the Winter 1942 issue)

"FLASHING you the highlights on Leigh Brackett, whose cosmic-minded yarns help to nourish Planet Stories.

I WENT through the usual procedure of being born. Time, Dec. 7, a few years before
Pearl Harbor. Place, Los Angeles, California. Most of my childhood was spent combing a Southern California beach. I was an inveterate beach lover. My idea of heaven is a hunk of sand, a nice shiny sun, and a lot of ocean to play around in.
When I was thirteen, I decided to become a writer. I haven't decided yet which are the unluckiest—the readers who like Brackett or the readers who don't. But I'm working on it.
I reformed sufficiently to finish school in a blaze of brotherly love. My teachers and I got along famously, probably because I could act and make speeches. Crazy notion, but I loved it. I am a frustrated ham at heart.
I regret to say that nothing very exciting has happened to me. No hairbreadth escapes. No Great Loves. No Revelations. I taught speech and dramatics for one season, and swimming for three. I read prodigiously and always have, everything from Shakespeare to Dashiel Hammett, with a special fondless for fantasy.
I like to travel. Some day, after this tragic mess is over, I want to see the whole world, east and west, taking it slow and giving the tourist routes the go by, I like people. Any kind of people, as long as I can learn something from them. I like to wear old clothes and loaf in the sun and eat and sleep and talk. I like the movies, mystery yarns, cloak-and-sword historicals, and non-fiction about crime and contemporary world events.
I like to write. I like it more than anything else in the world, except, possibly, acting. (See? I told you. Ham.) I hope some day to become a good writer. I believe in science-fiction and fantasy as a definite form, entitled to dignified consideration. Sure, there's lousy stuff printed in the field. But show me one where there isn't.
And show me one that offers a writer as much truth scope for imagination and the creation of new worlds. That we sometimes fall short is another point entirely. I also believe in science-fiction as an entertainment form and not as propaganda: Writers with Messages, in most cases, give me, as a reader, a large galloping pain. . . .
And that's Brackett."

4 out of 5

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