The Way The Future Was - Memoirs by Frederik Pohl - 1983
Award-winning writer, whiz-kid editor, wide-eyed fan, pioneering anthologist and demon literary agent—Frederik Pohl's been all over the science-fiction field, including a stretch as President of The Science Fiction Writers of America.
Here is his story of how he got to all those places and what it was like getting there.
In it you will find . . .
* What Isaac Asimov was like at 19.
* The truth behind the great World SF Convention War of 1939.
* How a teenager became a mover and shaker in the bizarre world of the pulp magazines.
* The strange mating rites of the sf community.
* How to represent most of the best sf writers and go broke.
* The dreams of new worlds and universes behind a body of completely original writing that has enlarged the horizons of three generations of readers . . . and netted the writers ½¢ to 3¢ a word.
From the moment he attended the first meeting of the Brooklyn chapter of the Science Fiction League, Fred Pohl was hooked. He and his friends founded and disbanded fan clubs with dizzying speed, then organized the fabled Futurians. At 19, he became editor of Astonishing Stories and Super Science Stories, and, except for the war and a brief fling in the advertising business, has been almost totally involved in science fiction ever since.
As an agent, he created the market for hardcover sf; as editor of Galaxy in the 60s, he shaped the field for most of a decade his Star Science Fiction series pioneered the concept of original anthologies; and along with all that he produced a number of truly outstanding works of sf, including The Space Merchants (with Cyril Kornbluth) and, most recently Man Plus and Gateway, voted the Best Novels of 1976 and 1977, respectively.
It's been a long road, from the scruffy Ivory Tower where the Futurians denned to a time when much that was science fiction is now reality—and Fred Pohl retraces it with candor, wit, and abiding love.