Brian Aldiss

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Friendships: Philip K Dick

In one of his essays, Joseph Brodsky, talking about Osip Mandelstam, says this about our lives:

Any poet, no matter how much he writes, expresses in his verse, physically or statistically speaking, at most one tenth of his life’s reality. The rest is normally shrouded in darkness.

Is this admirable remark what we feel about the writing of Philip K.Dick? And indeed about ourselves.

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Friendships: J.R.R. Tolkien

Mention has been made of the Inklings. This was the literary group which met frequently in the aforementioned pub, The Bird and Baby. The leading members were C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien. One was accustomed to seeing Tolkien bustling along in the Broad, clutching a copy of Sweet’s Anglo-Saxon Primer.

Possibly he was then – even then!, as they say – awaiting publication of his mighty Lord of the Rings.

At that time, I – on a humbler level – had seen my novel Hothouse published. I gave a copy to C.S.Lewis, who, terribly friendly – liked it and bought a copy which he presented to Tolkien.

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Brian Aldiss: Thoughts on Leo Tolstoy’s Resurrection

Unlike many of the rest of us Brian states that he has one favourite novel – Tolstoy’s Resurrection. In fact he recently stated that it’s all he reads these days. Here are some exclusive notes from him on his passion for the book that has influenced him throughout his career.

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Count Leo Tolstoi’s final novel was published in installments throughout 1898, in a magazine. In fact, in several magazines. Tolstoi was seventy years old in an exhausting year. Tolstoi had to check cuts made in his work by censors, week after week. Censors were not the writer’s only problem; closer to home, Sonya, Tolstoi’e wife, was unhappy about the sexual passages in the book.

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Friendships: Marie Bashkirtseff

Brian’s UK publishers The Friday Project is curating a series of short anecdotes that Brian has written about some of the many literary greats that he has been fortunate enough to know and meet over his illustrious career, and others that he has simply admired.

In a short series here on Brian’s blog we publish some appetisers ahead of their collated publication. We’ll be featuring the following friendships. For a list of all current friendship stories in the pipeline scroll down:

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New NASA Exoplanet Travel Posters

(This post was originally published on aldissandmore.com)

NASA’s own exoplanet travel posters

NASA’s own series of exoplanet travel posters

How about these beautiful pieces of poster artwork commissioned by NASA themselves to help inspire a generation to stay on board with the space discovery missions being run by NASA. Commissioned to look like art deco 1930’s era classic poster-work they certainly evoke memories of some classic science fiction artwork and could easily adorn any boys bedroom wall (and even their dad’s!)

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Friendships: Aldous Huxley

Brian’s UK publishers The Friday Project is curating a series of short anecdotes that Brian has written about some of the many literary greats that he has been fortunate enough to know and meet over his illustrious career, and others that he has simply admired.

In a short series here on Brian’s blog we publish some appetisers ahead of their collated publication. We’ll be featuring the following friendships. For a list of all current friendship stories in the pipeline scroll down:

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