This may surprise some of you, but I like books.
There’s just something about holding a book as an artifact, whether it’s a pocket paperback or a massive hardcover tome, that brings my mind to different worlds, different journeys. And if like me, you like books, that means it’s good to support the authors of the journeys you most enjoy.
One of the best ways I’ve found to do that is to hang around Kickstarter. You certainly don’t have to support authors that way. Many authors have patreons these days. You can write reviews encouraging other people to read their works. Read their books. Buy them for yourself and some friends. All good!
But for me, I love going to Kickstarter and finding an author to support. It’s how I discovered Kendra Merritt, for instance. I backed her series Mishap’s Heroes and discovered her great book By Winged Chair. I’m about halfway through book one of the heroes series, but By Winged Chair has my enthusiastic recommendation.
Some of the authors I support are dead, though…
I’m mentioning all this because I want you to go and check out this Kickstarter, which backs the reprinting of The Cosmic Courtship by Julian Hawthorne. And yes. That’s Nathaniel Hawthorne’s son, who wrote early science fiction. How cool is that?
Now, the Kickstarter is already a rousing success. But one of the stretch goals would be to make an entire library of pulp stories available, all of which are near-impossible to get these days without a LOT of money. Personally, I want to see that happen!
If you enjoy modern speculative stories, old pulp adventures are often amazing. They were written in a different time, and it’s important to recall that when reading. Besides racism and sexism issues, they also told very different stories that are paced entirely differently. That said, the ones I’ve read have never failed to not only grab my attention but take me on incredibly inventive stories.
And if you’re a writer, it’s good to broaden your horizons and read stories that are both new and old. If you only read stories that have been written since you were born, you miss out on the richness of your heritage as a storyteller. Oftentimes reading a story from another era will spark your imagination in new and incredible ways! See how those who went before tackled similar tropes, or how those tropes were invented in the first place! How did authors approach adventures when our ways of telling stories weren’t even invented yet? There’s a lot to learn in older stories!
So, whether or not you want to back that Kickstarter, that’s on you. The most I get out of it is if we happen to get to that particular stretch goal. Either way, check out some older stories to enrich your own writing. It’s worth your time.