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Ramsey Campbell (Ramsey)
Username: Ramsey

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 92.8.24.204
Posted on Tuesday, April 02, 2013 - 11:00 pm:   

Stevie, I think you'll love this.

http://www.lettersofnote.com/2012/10/help-from-heinlein.html
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Joel (Joel)
Username: Joel

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 2.30.203.94
Posted on Wednesday, April 03, 2013 - 12:46 am:   

He will, Ramsey! Sturgeon shares the same memory in written form somewhere, and it struck me when I read it as a truly heartening example of solidarity between writers.
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Craig (Craig)
Username: Craig

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 99.126.164.88
Posted on Wednesday, April 03, 2013 - 03:17 am:   

I like those closing insights about cats. Too true, too true....

I thought the day-dreaming idea best; and maybe the imaginary diary entry just above it, about the leprechaun.
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Hubert (Hubert)
Username: Hubert

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 178.116.60.39
Posted on Wednesday, April 03, 2013 - 12:22 pm:   

I never knew Heinlein had it in him. I'd pictured him as an ex-military man with Darwinistic views on just about everything. That letter must have made Sturgeon's day!
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Joel (Joel)
Username: Joel

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 217.37.199.45
Posted on Wednesday, April 03, 2013 - 02:27 pm:   

There's usually more to people than their politics or in some cases, less. The correlation between political radicalism and personal kindness or generosity exists, but doesn't come close to being a universal law. Let's not even mention George Galloway, for example.

And maybe Heinlein was an imaginative writer first and foremost, and respected genius where he saw it. Whatever the exact reason for his letter, it's a wonderful sharing of thoughts and feelings, a true expression of friendship.
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Joel (Joel)
Username: Joel

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 217.37.199.45
Posted on Wednesday, April 03, 2013 - 02:33 pm:   

No word from Stevie. Hope all's well with the F.R. Leavis of Belfast.
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Hubert (Hubert)
Username: Hubert

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 178.116.60.39
Posted on Wednesday, April 03, 2013 - 04:43 pm:   

This kind of selfless generosity is reminiscent of Lovecraft. He had no $100 to spare, of course.
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Stevie Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 86.24.62.55
Posted on Wednesday, April 03, 2013 - 10:49 pm:   

Thank you, Ramsey. That letter really filled me up. I had made a judgement call on Bob's humanity without knowing the man based solely on the essence that came through in every single page of his writing that I have read. I knew the story about Theodore Sturgeon (and also Philip K. Dick) but I did not know the details. The humour, intelligence and sheer heart of the man has me knowing that, despite all the detractors, I was fucking right about him.

And your own humanity at deigning to think about me when you read it has me quite humbled and moved at your own humanity. Thank you so much you beautiful man.
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Ramsey Campbell (Ramsey)
Username: Ramsey

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 92.13.61.78
Posted on Thursday, April 04, 2013 - 12:39 pm:   

Beautiful? Don't ruin my image!
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Stevie Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 86.24.62.55
Posted on Thursday, April 04, 2013 - 01:46 pm:   

Sorry, man. Was a tad pissed when I wrote that. Call it beer goggles lol.
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Joel (Joel)
Username: Joel

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 217.37.199.45
Posted on Thursday, April 04, 2013 - 01:54 pm:   

One striking thing about the Heinlein letter is that he offers Sturgeon some ideas that he thinks are 'Sturgeon' and one of the stories written from his suggestions, 'Here is the News', became one of Sturgeon's most famous stories. It's inspired pastiche as anonymous collaboration not only generous but brilliant.
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Stevie Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 86.24.62.55
Posted on Thursday, April 04, 2013 - 02:32 pm:   

Nothing wrong, Joel. Just out on the lash all day. I'm off work this week so making the most of it. About to look up F. R. Leavis as I've never heard of the bloke... <gulp>
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Stevie Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 86.24.62.55
Posted on Thursday, April 04, 2013 - 02:50 pm:   

One of the most respected and influential literary critics of the 20th Century! Aww, thank you! <blush>
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Protodroid (Protodroid)
Username: Protodroid

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.233.148.27
Posted on Thursday, April 04, 2013 - 03:00 pm:   

He was mentioned in Bridget Jones Diary.

A.S. Byatt (if you can belive Wiki): "Leavis ... showed him the terrible, the magnificent importance and urgency of English literature and simultaneously deprived him of any confidence in his own capacity to contribute to or change it."

This reminds me of David Starkey, whose combination of narcissism and insecurity means that he must "win" every debate by clawing it back into his arena of expertise (i.e., history), like a blind shark dragging a man into the sea. Where are the truth seekers?
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Protodroid (Protodroid)
Username: Protodroid

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.233.148.27
Posted on Thursday, April 04, 2013 - 03:02 pm:   

(To be clear, I'm just responding to the personality type that quote reminds me of, not Stevie or even the real Leavis.)
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Stevie Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 86.24.62.55
Posted on Thursday, April 04, 2013 - 03:07 pm:   

I have a great book called 'Requiem', published just after Bob's death, full of unpublished stories, essays, letters and similarly warm anecdotes by the likes of; Asimov, Clarke, Dick, Sturgeon, Campbell, Kuttner, Bradbury, Leiber, Haldeman, and anyone else you care to mention in the sci-fi field. Their genuine respect and love for the man is evident on every page. Stephen King was also a huge fan as anyone who has read both authors cannot help but note. Heinlein was by far the better writer, IMO. I don't consider him stridently right wing rather a fiercely individualistic libertarian with no time for selfishness or cruelty or for those who didn't put their whole effort into life. He was a compassionate realist and highly critical of the sins of big business. One of the most interesting and original political/philosophical thinkers I have read. He also understood the eternal truth of The One.
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Joel (Joel)
Username: Joel

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 2.27.145.139
Posted on Thursday, April 04, 2013 - 10:42 pm:   

I was thinking of Leavis' attachment to the idea of literary traditions, a hermeneutic strand of critical theory that has generated the adjective 'Leavisite'.
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Protodroid (Protodroid)
Username: Protodroid

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.233.148.29
Posted on Friday, April 05, 2013 - 12:18 am:   

Yeah, that's the angle they took on him in BRIDGET JONES' DIARY.

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