75 Years: Women of Wonder, the Classic Years

This is the last 75 years post until next week, because tomorrow I am off to the Nebulas.  I’m not a Nebula nominee, very sad, but Mom wants to take a road trip and maybe see the shuttle launch.  Budget-wise, it was either buy tickets to the awards banquet or feed the cats for the next six months. Therefore, we’ll be blogging the awards live from the parking lot, perched on the car hood in our stunning purple tulle gowns, fighting over a pair of binoculars and my brother’s iPhone.  Maybe someone will crack open a door and throw us hors d’oeuvres now and then. Mom’s elderly, you know.  She needs sustenance.

This anthology is a must-have.  I’d heard about it before but didn’t get my copy until the Jacksonville Library book sale a few years ago. The Classic Years (1940-1970) includes writers such as C.L. Moore, Judith Merril, Leigh Brackett, Kit Reeed, Joanna Russ, Kate Wilhelm, and many more.  I especially like the introduction by Pamela Sargent.  She talks about how it took more than two years to find a publisher for the original anthology, because few people thought it would find an audience or have enough good stories in it. “Some editors found the idea absurd,” writes Sargent.  She also writes:

“The impression has persisted that science fiction, once almost exclusively written for men by men, suddenly acquired a large percentage of influential women writers and a corresponding increase in female readers during the late 1960’s and early 1970’s . . . we should not lose sight of the fact that however outnumbered women writers have been, they have also been a part of the genre since its beginnings.”


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