Vacation In the Golden Age Is On Hiatus

You’ve probably noted that I’ve delayed Episode 41 of my Vacation in the Golden Age twice already. The first time was due to a number of deadlines that I had for various paid writing gigs. The second time was to try to find some way of working in the necessary reading I have to do each day so that I could continue with the Episodes, as well as with my fiction and nonfiction writing, both of which have picked up lately. After a total of 4 weeks of delays, I have come to the conclusion that there just aren’t enough hours in the day for me to make it work. And if there were enough hours, I doubt I’d have the energy to put them to good use. Given the choice of spending what time I have to either the Vacation posts, or my fiction writing, I’ve chosen my fiction writing.

A couple of things about this:

  1. This does not mean the series will not continue at some point in the future. I’d love to complete it through it’s planned course, which was the December 1950 issue of Astounding. It does mean that I won’t be actively working toward that goal for a while.
  2. The existing posts are not going away. I find it fun to read through one or two of them. And I imagine there are many people out there who haven’t yet discovered the posts, but would be interested in them. So they are staying put.

I also wanted to thank everyone who has commented or otherwise contributed to these posts and to my experience in doing them. I was overwhelmed by the feedback I’ve received on the posts and when I can find the time to get them started up again, I’d certainly look to all of you for your keen insights and comments. They added a depth to the experience that I never expected.

Finally, I want to apologize to everyone who might be disappointed by this announcement. It wasn’t an easy decision to make. I’ve stewed over it for a month, looking for ways to make it work, but if there are any, they’ve eluded me. At least being explicit about it, I am no longer fooling myself about my ability to carry out the amount of work I was attempting to do, and I can go through each day with a little less stress.


  1. I’m REALLY sorry to hear this. 🙁

    Vacation in the Golden Age is one of my favourite reads online, and is the first thing I look for every time I visit your site. Obviously your writing career must come first, but you have my sincere hopes and wishes that you will be able to return to Vacation at some point in the not too distant future.

    I’d definitely like to see you complete it right through to 1950, which would make it an incredibly useful resource for any self-respecting Golden Age SF fan.

    I’m keeping my fingers crossed that this happens.

  2. I wanted to progress through the entire Kübler-Ross model before I commented on this development, but I am still stuck on denial. In truth I always thought your plan to read once a week an issue of ASF front to back was a bit mad — I have never read an entire issue of any magazine ever, let alone one primarily consisting of (how should I put this) the extremely variable quality of 70 year old pulp science fiction.

    If you want to switch from a long term Vacation to a rapid fire Tour Bus through the Golden Age, I can recommend to you the worthwhile stories in the remaining 8 odd years of your itinerary.

    1. Mark, I really do consider this a “hiatus” and plan to get back to it at some point, the biggest question being when. The real decision was based on the fact that my own fiction and nonfiction sales started picking up this year and it seemed to me that I should spend my time striking while the iron was hot. I was torn between that and my reading and I kept getting behind in the reading.

      That said, by all means, send me a list of the worthwhile stories. I’d be very interested to see what they are.

  3. Alva Rogers in Requiem already covers a lot of the famous stories from Nov. 1942 to Dec. 1943. My choices focus on the gems which were rarely (if ever) reprinted – which is why there is no Mimsy, Gallegher/Galloway, radio tube Venus or Weapons (either Shop or Makers).

    * The Search – van Vogt (Jan 43)
    * Clash By Night – O’Donnell (Mar 43)
    * Judgement Night – Moore (Aug-Sept 43)
    * Fifty Million Monkeys – Jones (Oct 43)
    * Paradox Lost – Brown (Oct 43)


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