I recently received a notice from Vagabond Books that they will soon be publishing their much-anticipated FUTURIA FANTASIA. For those not familiar with "FuFa" (as it is affectionately known), this was a mimeographed fanzine first published by an 18-year-old Ray Bradbury shortly after his graduation from high school. Ray published four issues of FUTURIA FANTASIA over the 1938-1939 time frame, with the financial assistance of his good friend Forrest J. Ackerman. The magazine contained not only a great deal of the young Ray's writing (both under his own name and a variety of pseudonyms), but also writing by Robert Heinlein (as "Lyle Monroe"), Henry Kuttner, Damon Knight and Forry Ackerman (all close to the beginning of their literary careers), with cover art by the brilliant Hannes Bok (another good friend of Ray's). Ray published approximately 100 copies of each issue, and sold them for 10 cents each! Needless to say, copies of the fragile original magazine are as scarce as hen's teeth and far more expensive (there is a complete set listed on ABE for $8500!).
The nice thing about Vagabond's reissue is that the issues will be reproduced in a hardcover book, and that they are priced so that they will accessible to everyone. There will be a trade edition for $35, a signed limited edition of 300 copies for $150, and a deluxe signed limited edition of 52 copies for $400. The books are expected out in the April-May, 2007 time frame.
I once asked Ray how he got so many talented people to contribute to his fanzine. He jokingly said that he pestered them so much for contributions, they gave him stories and articles just to get rid of him!
Contact information for Vagabond Books, for those interested, is: Vagabond Books, 930 Hartzell St., Pacific Palisades, CA 90272 (Phone Number 310-936-5249). Their website is:
www.vagabondbooks.comThis message has been edited. Last edited by: Richard,
Thanks, now maybe I can fill in the blanks of those last few remaining unread stories!
I just returned from a wonderful weekend in Los Angeles, and the LA Festival of Books at UCLA. Ray was in fine form, signing for over two hours at the Vagabond Books booth. (I don't know how he does it!) I stayed around, simply basking in the glow of the outpouring of love the book buyers had for Ray. Ray then proceeded to get two standing ovations during his wonderful talk at Royce Hall at the end of Saturday afternoon, as he urged the audience to follow their loves.
I am including this posting under this topic in order to mention that Vagabond Books sold out of all five boxes of FUTURIA FANTASIA that they brought to the Festival, as the crowd snapped up this historically important book. I bought two copies myself...it's absolutely beautiful! Only about a thousand copies of the trade edition were printed. If you are interested and have not yet purchased a copy, it would probably be a good idea not to wait a whole lot longer!
I, too, just returned from a great weekend in Los Angeles, and I loved the Festival of Books! Ray was great to finally see in person, and his lecture in Royce Hall was very inspirational. I took along two non-Bradbury readers, and I think new fans were created in the course of that hour. Luckily, I got my copy of Futuria Fantasia, complete with Ray's signature. Can't wait to read it!
The folks at Project Gutenberg (the project which publishes out-of-copyright literature) have the four issues of FUTURIA FANTASIA online, including images.
(I'll leave it to others to determine whether ALL of the contents of FF truly are out of copyright.)
Here's the link:
Thanks ever so! I never did afford my own copy!
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