Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Hail to the Fraud: A Golden Age Space Opera Tales Anthology

Hail to the Fraud: A Golden Age Space Opera Tales Anthology

There I was, minding my own business at an overfilled Submissions Desk at the back of the office.

When I got one, then another, then another space opera story about politics and elections, and the typical fraud and graft that happens in those worlds.

But it’s unexpected to see so many on the subject simply show up on their own.

OK, so I was actively looking for them. After the first two or three showed up while I was looking for something else.

Golden Age Space Opera Tales has that secret. Sure, they’ve got rocket ships and ray guns and curvaceous women needing assistance as they fight off freakish monsters on other planets.

The trick is that those references can take a couple of sentences out of a story that might be novella length by the time it’s told completely. Meanwhile, you’ve got a detective-mystery, an action-adventure, and more that a few romances woven in among everything.

Having politics as a background shouldn’t seem that unusual.

And as a satire writer, I could see more than a few sharp jabs taken by these authors as the story unrolled.

So I brought these to you, just for your entertainment (although I’ve heard these writers can be studied to improve you craft on the sly.)

Just to bring you up to date, here’s the blurbs we used to explain this genre for new readers:

Space Opera is a subgenre of science fiction that emphasizes space warfare, melodramatic adventure, interplanetary battles, chivalric romance, and risk-taking. Set mainly or entirely in outer space, it usually involves conflict between opponents possessing advanced abilities, futuristic weapons, and other sophisticated technology.

The term has no relation to music, as in a traditional opera, but is instead a play on the terms “soap opera”, a melodramatic television series, and “horse opera”, which was coined during the 1930s to indicate a formulaic Western movie. Space operas emerged in the 1930s and continue to be produced in literature, film, comics, television, and video games.

The Golden Age of Pulp Magazine Fiction derives from pulp magazines (often referred to as “the pulps”) as they were inexpensive fiction magazines that were published from 1896 to the late 1950s. The term pulp derives from the cheap wood pulp paper on which the magazines were printed. In contrast, magazines printed on higher-quality paper were called “glossies” or “slicks”.

The pulps gave rise to the term pulp fiction. Pulps were the successors to the penny dreadfuls, dime novels, and short-fiction magazines of the 19th century. Although many writers wrote for pulps, the magazines were proving grounds for those authors like Robert Heinlein, Louis LaMour, “Max Brand”, Ray Bradbury, Philip K. Dick, and many others. The best writers moved onto longer fiction required by paperback publishers. Many of these authors have never been out of print, even long after their passing.

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You may already know all that. And are getting bored (or just skipped down to this part.

So I’ll let you get on with your entertainment.

Just check in at the end for your bonuses and where to find more great anthologies like this one.


Anthology containing:

Mr. President by Stephen Arr
Hail to the Chief by Randall Garrett
The Man Who Would Be King by Rudyard Kipling
The Rebel of Valkyr by Alfred Coppel
The Envoy, Her by H. B. Fyfe
The Unnecessary Man by Randall Garrett
Expediter by Mack Reynolds
Check and Checkmate by Walter M. Miller
Freedom by Mack Reynolds
Tiger By the Tail by Poul Anderson
Shamar’s War by Kris Neville
Sea Legs by Frank Quattrocchi

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