Unca Harlan's Art Deco Dining Pavilion

Discussion of the man and his work.

Welcome to the Art Deco Dining Pavilion! Here's the deal. This is Harlan's little breakfast nook at Webderland. When he's not here, we chat about him and his work. When he is, we act like we're guests in his home. That's about all there is to it. (link to More specific rules) Oh, and since the nook doesn't exactly hold a crowd (and to prevent the less frequent voices from being drowned out), please limit yourself to one post a day unless Harlan asks you a direct question. The Pavilion Annex is available if you're the logorrheic type. Also, we have archives of old posts. RSS Feed

You there! Go and buy some comics from Harlan Ellison's Comic Collection right now!

Squeeze in and pipe up   Show posts since last one for:
Hey Kids! Visit the Webderland Forums or its Pavilion Annex for less restricted discussions! Post as many times a day as you want! Put up pictures of your cat! Go crazy!
OTHER ONLINE ELLISONIA: Check out EReads.com for their fine collection of Harlan Ellison Books Online! Many more titles coming soon...
GET SOME UNCA HARLAN CDs! ** VOLUME 6 IS NOW OUT! ** On The Road With Ellison Volumes 1-6 available now from Deep Shag Records

NOW AVAILABLE: The Glass Teat and The Other Glass Teat Omnibus from Charnel House.

Displaying board posts 26 through 50 - showing messages at a time.

Just Sayin'
- Tuesday, June 20 2017 17:21:35

Steve Barber

That last part was funny -- shades of the famous "seven word sentence with seven different meanings". And you can call me "Justin" if you want to -- I've certainly been called worse -- but Mr. Sluyter might have a problem with that one.

- Sunday, June 18 2017 20:53:8

Tom Wolfe Can't Write Fiction For Sour Owl Poop
NASON: It was either John Updike OR Norman Mailer that reviewed A MAN IN FULL. John Irving simply defended the reviewer's viewpoint (on a talk show, I believe) and pointed out (in a contentious way, in the manner of, say Harlan Ellison)that he found Tom Wolfe to be lacking in style and ability.

For my part, I agree with Irving: as a creator of fiction, Wolfe can't write for sour owl poop. His nonfiction books, THE RIGHT STUFF, and THE ELECTRIC KOOL-AID ACID TEST are brilliant pieces of "first person", Truman Capote/Hunter Thompson-inspired pieces of "journalism" (which is to say they mix pop history with "you were there" -- whether they are first person narrative or not -- style writing). But, to borrow from Celtic-linked relatives on the other side of "the pond", abominations like I AM CHARLOTTE SIMMONS, BACK TO BLOOD, BONFIRE OF THE VANITIES and, yes, A MAN IN FULL, are "shite". Unfortunately, his knack for cobbling above-average "pop" nonfiction has circled the drains of late, as well, since "The Kingdom of Speech" and "Hooking Up" were laughable, at best.

And, let's face it, the funniest "comic" novelist have always -- and still are -- liberal, or at least moderate...

Kurt Vonnegut
Joseph Heller
Stanley Elkin
John Kennedy Toole
John Irving
Anne Tyler
Garrison Keillor (got a late start in novels)
Douglas Adams

...to name a few from the post WWII generation and the boomer generation as well. And, like Simon, I read THE NIX by Nathan Hill and I would definitely include him in a list of younger
novelists who fit the "liberal" and funny labels:

Nathan Hill
Brady Udall (moderate, at least)
Karen Russell

And so on.

Christopher Buckley is only funny to those who think William Buckley was clever (and funny) -- the latter was neither, bordering on racist and homophobic most of the time.

Cheers from oz,

Michigan - Sunday, June 18 2017 20:50:33

This kind of baffled me...
The impression this year has been that Kmart has been limping along on its last legs, having failed to find success after buying out Sears over a decade ago. They're dropping down to only 1,200 stores, and with failing companies, this usually means they're not going to do anything new... except for Pontiac, who produced some really good-looking cars during their last few years (shame they didn't start doing that ten years earlier). But I was looking up my book's title--I'm getting desperate for reviews and feedback, plus I do regular checks to see if some torrent scum stole this book, too--and I came across it listed on an expired Kmart page. In other words, it's not on the active site, but Google did get a screen cap of it. What's weird is that I published it through CreateSpace, which is an Amazon print-on-demand company. So now I'm wondering if this was some glitch in the Kmart ordering system (maybe someone thought CS was a real publisher?), or is Amazon expanding out and touching Kmart for business now? Imagine the revolution in marketing for independent books, if such a thing happened.

Anyway, even as temporary as the listing appears to be, there's still that '70s part of me that grew up with Kmart that says, "Cool, I'm on a Kmart page!"

Nat Segaloff <nataloff@sbcglobal.net>
North Hollywood, CA - Sunday, June 18 2017 18:33:48

Thanks to those who helped
The trade edition of "A Lit Fuse: The Provocative Life of Harlan Ellison" (NESFA Press) has gone off to the printer for a July 20 (give or take) street date. It will be available from Amazon, B&N, and other traditional sources at a cover price of $35. I want to thank everyone who was kind enough to contact me with corrections for those errors that made it past the editors, proofreaders, and me. If they arrived in time, we put them into the new printing, and any that arrived after deadline will make it into future printings. I especially want to thank those who left comments about the book on this site. Clearly Harlan and Susan have a number of people who care deeply about them and I am proud to have been allowed to walk among you.

Robert Nason <nightwriterblue82@gmail.com>
Whitestone, NY - Sunday, June 18 2017 17:52:11

Wolfe & Young

SIMON: I assume your subject heading was a reference to Tom Wolfe's essay, "My Three Stooges," his response to John Updike, Norman Mailer, and John Irving, who negatively reviewed his novel A MAN IN FULL.

It's so happens that I'm currently reading Wolfe most recent novel, BACK TO BLOOD, set in South Florida, where I just celebrated my dad's 90th birthday. The book is hilarious. Is there a better comic novelist rioting in America today, with the possible exception of Christopher Buckley? And why are the conservative novelists the funny ones these days?

My understanding is that Sean Young was on track to being a major movie star in the 1980s when she was cast as Vicki Vale in Tim Burton's 1989 BATMAN. Apparently she injured her arm shortly before production began and had to be replaced by Kim Basinger. To this day showing Young believes that she lost the momentum at that point in her career and never got it back. She foolishly insisted on lobbying for the role of Catwoman in BATMAN RETURNS, going so far as to show up in Burton's Warner Bros. office wearing a handmade Catwoman costume and insisting she be considered for the part. It seems that security had to escort the lady out of the studio comma and Michelle Pfeiffer got the plum role. She began to develop a reputation for unstable behavior after James Woods broke off a relationship with her and she stalked him, but to no avail. Eventually she reached that "certain age" at which actresses are no longer considered suitable for leading lady roles in our sexist culture. The opportunity for major stardom had come and passed. But that hasn't stopped Sean Young from steadily working on stage and in film -- she has parts in no less than seven films coming out this year, and another seven are in the pipeline. Our esteemed host has said that the difference between an amateur and a professional is that the professional keeps at it, year after year. That's just what Sean Young has done. You have to give her credit for that.

- Sunday, June 18 2017 16:57:11

My four Scr**ges
That title, by the way, was paraphrased from an essay by a "scribe" -- I use the term loosely -- highly revered by the conservative mindset, so I couldn't resist. And when one considers historical accuracy, four would've been the correct number, not three.

Alex, your interpretation of what I wrote comes across as the equivalent of the "I know it when I see it" quote by Justice Stewart, waaaay back when, adjudicating on "pornography". Or, perhaps, one of the blind men in the room, running his hands over one part of an elephant, and then saying, "it's a snake", or a tree trunk, etc.

Dear "Besides": I'm certain my short comment made no connection between the state of Young's mental health and the appearance of Trump as POTUS. Find another bridge.

Jacob J. Spiderman III, Esq. , Not sure why you need to bring up the election -- I didn't; I just mentioned the idiocy of supporting someone like Trump for President of the United States -- but since ya did: surely you've read about the three million vote difference, the inadequacy of the electoral college system in modern times and, most importantly -- I would think, for any truly patriotic American -- the fact that the RUSSIANS actually influenced the 2016 Presidential election. You've read about all of that, haven't you?

Kenneth Stevens, your conclusion -- much like that of the blind men and "Besides" -- would have to have been pulled out of thin air. Unless -- heaven forfend! -- you believe success is only attainable in Hollywood? Or that those in the MENSA society are only just above average IQ? Say it ain't so, Joe! Er, Ken.


- Sunday, June 18 2017 15:54:6

I guess we can't blame that one on Tommy Westphall.

David E. Ray <shaneeray@comcast.net>
Bellevue, WA - Sunday, June 18 2017 15:20:24

Sad to report that Stephen Furst has passed away...


Kenneth Stevens <stevens.kenneth@gmail.com>
Knoxville, Tennessee - Sunday, June 18 2017 15:1:9


Without a doubt you are the very first person ever to put forth the theory that Hollywood is secretly controlled by the Mensans.

Jacob J. Spiderman III, Esq.
- Sunday, June 18 2017 14:18:45

And yet we have the 2016 Democratic candidate for POTUS as a pure and simple loser to a semi-literate game show host with bad hair. And that with all of her supposed intelligence and experience AND with the super-being trillion megawatt brains of her hordes of truly enlightened supporters behind her.

Besides ...
- Sunday, June 18 2017 12:31:22

Sean Young was considered a nutter well before Mr. Drumpf went into politics. Go fish.

- Sunday, June 18 2017 12:20:24

Sean Young's politics ...
It is, for me, very difficult to comprehend the mindset of some of the people out there. In a sentence, it runs: "I cannot believe a woman voted for the candidate of her choice rather than for the candidate I think she should have voted for."

- Saturday, June 17 2017 21:53:33

In three words
Robert Nason, you explained, in three words, Alan's query about why Sean Young hasn't been more successful: She supported Trump.

Which means she probably voted for Trump. Which also means she's one of less intelligent beings on the American Continent.

To succeed, one has to be talented, lucky and at least smarter than average -- definitely NOT below average.

Janet Gamache
Victoria, BC - Saturday, June 17 2017 20:0:12

Teller of tales
'tis true
we meet
at the heart
of metaphor
by landscapes
to shelter
the soul
a gift
the infinite
a song
in need of nothing

Robert Nason <nightriderblue@aol.com>
Whitestone, NY - Saturday, June 17 2017 17:46:1

Sean Young a page on Facebook which I occasionally look at. She now goes under the name Mary Sean Young, the name she was born with. I find it amusing that her many followers are baffled by her staunch support of Trump, whom she has vigorously supported from the day he announced his candidacy. It drives most of her fans crazy. Take a look at her Facebook page sometime and enjoy the fireworks.

- Friday, June 16 2017 18:10:59

When you're strange...
Alan, you are one strrrrange potato, my friend.
But, yeah, Sean Young rocked it in "Blade Runner". If you have
to be a one hit wonder, may as well be in the best.

largo, fl. - Friday, June 16 2017 15:9:44

Just saw Sean Young doin' okay.
Have not seen or heard about her in so long,still making movies,very small studio projects,she can do no wrong after Blade Runner and Dune,wish others felt that.

John <johnp51157 AT LIVE.com>
Gainesville, Fl - Friday, June 16 2017 4:28:41

Father's Day
I hope all of you have a Great weekend & Most of all I hope Harlan & Susan are doing good

Tim Lowe <book.dude@hotmail.com>
Nashville, TN - Thursday, June 15 2017 8:22:33

re: Harlan's intro
Tony, I appreciate your help very much. Have a wonderful day.


Tony Rabig
Parsons, KS - Thursday, June 15 2017 8:14:3

Tim Lowe - re the intro

That would be "The Waves in Rio," Harlan's intro to THE BEAST THAT SHOUTED LOVE AT THE HEART OF THE WORLD.

Bests to all here.

Tim Lowe <book.dude@hotmail.com>
Nashville, TN - Thursday, June 15 2017 7:47:7

Searching for an Ellison intro
All of my Ellison books are still packed from a move, but I am trying to remember which book has the introduction where he talks about being in Rio and being alone; how, like the waves, he has travelled all this distance just to be alone.

Can anyone help?

Thanks in advance.


largo, fl. - Thursday, June 15 2017 4:25:51

Had to just shutdown all the bullshit fed from the Teat...
Watched a movie called Citizen Ruth,I laughed through all of it,to think there are people suffering those issues,not just Laura Derns character but the right to life folks,crazed to victory,but Laura really is quite good,remember the film with Cage,Wild at Heart.

Robert Nason <nightwriterblue82@gmail.com>
Whitestone, NY - Thursday, June 15 2017 2:57:35

For those of you who may not have seen it, here's a delightful clip of William Shatner and Joan Collins reminiscing about "The City on the Edge of Forever," which Shatner considers the best episode of STAR TREK. (It would have been fascinating if the two of them had discussed what they thought of Harlan's original teleplay.)


- Wednesday, June 14 2017 19:7:27

Harlan's (non)presence ...
A while back (about two decades), a fan of Robert Heinlein's posted one of the most satisfactory explanations for "The Number of the Beast."

Here's the link -- http://www.heinleinsociety.org/rah/numberbeast.html

The reason I provide the link is that I think Harlan's absence could be for a reason similar to the explanation given by Heinlein's fan all those years ago. Harlan is working, and like all great writers -- and that isn't me trying to suck up; you read "Paladin" without choking up, even though you've read it a dozen times -- that's exhausting, effort-filled work. Whether you're 20 or 80, a day of writing (or even a day doing all the peripheral work that is needed to get a day of writing done) burns through a lot of your energy.

I continue to think fond thoughts, I continue to dip in and out of the books, and that's all there is to it. I have met Harlan only twice, and both times, it was simply in a one-in-a-line fashion. But he has the good manners of the Old School. If he was just going to ignore us, he'd tell us to get the hell out of the house first (but he'd do it with some style).

We are all lucky to have the opportunity that is this site.

All best,


driftglass <driftglass99@gmail.com>
Lincolnland, IL - Wednesday, June 14 2017 16:26:43

My thanks to our gracious host
Harlan's essays and fiction have been my wise and stalwart companions for decades, especially during the shittiest of times. He has never been other than kind and incredibly generous with me and whether he ever stops back in here or not, he has already given me far more than I can repay

Thanks Unca Harlan.

Displaying board posts 26 through 50 out of 5001
Show Next 25 or Previous 25 entries

Post a New Message or see previous ones in the Comments Archive Return to the Harlan Ellison Home Page

harlanellison.com is maintained by Rick Wyatt - webmaster@harlanellison.com