Philip K. Dick Award Winners For 2016

The finalists for The Philip K. Dick Award were revealed on Friday, March 25, 2016 at Norwescon 39, in SeaTac, Washington. The award is given to the distinguished original Science Fiction paperback published for the first time in the U.S.A. during the previous year.

The Awardees

Distinguished Paperback Special citation
Apex

Ramez Naam
Archangel

Marguerite Reed

From http://www.philipkdickaward.org
“The Philip K. Dick Award is presented annually with the support of the Philip K. Dick Trust for distinguished science fiction published in paperback original form in the United States. The award is sponsored by the Philadelphia Science Fiction Society and the award ceremony is sponsored by the NorthWest Science Fiction Society.”

“This year’s judges are Michael Armstrong, Brenda Clough, Meg Elison, Lee Konstantinou, and Ben Winters.”

For more information, visit The Official Philip K. Dick Awards Page.

Note: If you don’t see the covers and titles above, most likely your ad blocking software/browser extension is not allowing the content from Amazon.com style= to appear.

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Philip K. Dick Award Nominations For 2016

Six paperback originals published in 2015 were selected for the final ballot of the 2016 Philip K. Dick Award.

The Nominees

Edge of Dark

Brenda Cooper
After the Saucers Landed

Douglas Lain
(R)evolution

PJ Manney
Apex

Ramez Naam
Windswept

Adam Rakunas
Archangel

Marguerite Reed

The final results will be announced on Friday, March 25, 2016.

For more information, visit The Official Philip K. Dick Awards Page.

Note: If you don’t see the covers and titles above, most likely your ad blocking software/browser extension is not allowing the content from Amazon.com style= to appear.

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The Passing Of David Bowie And Philip K. Dick

David Bowie passed away Sunday (January 10, 2016) at the age of 69. I’m not sure how well known David Bowie’s link to Philip K. Dick is and the importance of Bowie to the novel VALIS.

Minor Spoilers Follow

David Bowie's LowThe movie that the characters view at roughly the halfway point of the strongly autobiographical novel was titled VALIS, but the incident is based on Philip K. Dick viewing the film The Man Who Fell To Earth starring David Bowie (who is fictionalized in the novel VALIS as Eric Lampton A.K.A. Mother Goose). Dick found the film to be provocative and beautifully textured and relevant to the experiences he had been having originating on 2-3-74.

David Bowie's Station To StationBowie strongly identified with the character he portrayed in the film, Thomas Jerome Newton. Two of his album covers, Station to Station and Low, are imagery that is associated with the film. I think that Philip K. Dick also strongly identified with Thomas Jerome Newton and with the religious and messianic themes of the film. I believe that Dick saw parallels with his own experiences after and including his Pink Beam Experience on February 20, 1974.

I have always been attracted to music (mostly Rock Music) that expresses themes or ideas from Science Fiction especially Progressive Rock and Space Rock. I’ve enjoyed David Bowie’s work because he toys with concepts that are easily associated with Science Fiction and also concepts that seem to sit within other genres but with a bending or tendency towards Science Fiction. He wrote music and lyrics that weren’t solely about romantic relationships. David Bowie also has acted in films that are Fantasy or Science Fiction and has created personas that have these same elements.

Ziggy Stardust, Aladdin Sane, The Thin White Duke, The Man Who Fell to Earth, Mother Goose. David Bowie will definitely be missed and he left an incredible legacy of music, image and film.

The Man Who Fell To Earth

References

http://www.philipkdickfans.com/literary-criticism/interviews/horselover-fat-and-the-new-messiah/

http://www.philipkdickfans.com/literary-criticism/frank-views-archive/philip-k-dicks-final-interview/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Man_Who_Fell_to_Earth

http://flavorwire.com/377128/a-journey-through-the-12-ages-of-david-bowie

David Bowie’s Low (33 1/3)

Divine Invasions: A Life of Philip K. Dick

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Amazon Greenlights The Man in the High Castle Series

The adaptation of The Man in the High Castle was one of the five series that Amazon ordered more episodes after the success of the pilot episode in Amazon Studios’ first 2015 pilot season. The show will premiere exclusively to Prime members later this year and in 2016 on Amazon’s Prime Instant Video service. No definitive date has been released for the availability of The Man in the High Castle specifically.

According to Roy Price, VP of Amazon Studios, “During the latest pilot season, Amazon customers made ‘The Man in the High Castle’ our most-watched pilot ever.”

For more information:

http://variety.com/2015/digital/news/amazon-greenlights-5-series-renews-mozart-in-the-jungle-for-season-2-1201435977/

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/amazon-orders-5-new-series-774725

The pilot episode is still available to view if you haven’t seen it yet.



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Three Versions of Blade Runner Play Three Straight Nights at Cleveland Cinematheque Starting February 27, 2015

For those Philip K. Dick or Blade Runner fans who live in (or near) Cleveland, Ohio (and who don’t own Five-Disc Ultimate Collector’s Edition), you can view three different versions of the Ridley Scott classic this weekend at the Cleveland Cinematheque.

From:
http://www.cleveland.com/moviebuff/index.ssf/2015/02/blade_runner_three_versions_of.html

“The original U.S. theatrical release will screen at 9:25 p.m. on Friday. That will be followed by the 1992 “Director’s Cut” version at 9:10 p.m. Saturday and, at 3:45 Sunday afternoon, the “Final Cut” from 2007.”

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Scene From UBIK Cited On Slate.com As Prescient

One of my favorite scenes in the works of Philip K. Dick has been highlighted in an article in Slate.com on February 10, 2015.

Philip K. Dick Warned Us About the Internet of Things in 1969

And while spidering through the links in the article from Slate.com, I found the origin posting of the text from Ubik.

Before we give doors and toasters sentience, we should decide what we’re comfortable with first

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Release Date Set For Radio Free Albemuth

After the successful Kickstarter campaign many Philip K. Dick fans have been waiting (im)patiently for Radio Free Albemuth to arrive in theaters and eventually on DVD. Along with the announcement of a new trailer for the film, the release date has been announced as June 27, 2014.

From the press release sent out a few days ago:

NEW TRAILER DEBUT FOR ‘RADIO FREE ALBEMUTH’

PHILIP K. DICK NOVEL ‘RADIO FREE ALBEMUTH’ COMES TO THEATERS VIA FREESTYLE

 

Shea Whigham, Alanis Morissette, Jonathan Scarfe & Katheryn Winnick Star in Sci-fi Tale Set for Day and Date Release on June 27th, 2014

 

A new trailer is now available for the film. Please see the two links below for the trailer:

YouTube: http://youtu.be/ovH_-mQxCok
Yekra: http://www.yekra.com/radio-free-albemuth

Los Angeles, CA (May 6, 2014) – Freestyle Releasing and Freestyle Digital Media (FDM) announced today that they have acquired theatrical and all DVD/VOD rights to the science fiction thriller RADIO FREE ALBEMUTH, which is based on a Philip K. Dick novel and was directed and adapted by John Alan Simon. The film stars Jonathan Scarfe (“Perception,” “Grimm”), Shea Whigham (“Boardwalk Empire”), Katheryn Winnick (“Vikings”) and world renowned recording artist Alanis Morissette (“Weeds”). Supporting cast includes Scott Wilson (“Walking Dead”), Ashley Greene (“Twilight”), Jon Tenney (“The Closer,” “Scandal”) and Rich Sommer (“Mad Men”). The film was produced by Dale Rosenbloom, Stephen Nemeth and Elizabeth Karr along with Simon and will debut in limited theaters and on all digital platforms on June 27, 2014.

From sci-fi author Philip K. Dick (Blade Runner, Minority Report, A Scanner Darkly) comes his most personal and prophetic thriller to date. It’s 1985 in an alternate reality and Berkeley record store clerk Nick Brady (Jonathan Scarfe, Perception) begins to experience strange visions transmitted from an extra-terrestrial source he calls VALIS. He uproots his family and moves to Los Angeles where he becomes a successful music executive with a secret mission to overthrow the oppressive government led by US President Fremont (Scott Wilson – The Walking Dead). With the help of his best friend, sci-fi writer, Philip K. Dick himself (Shea Whigham – Boardwalk Empire, American Hustle) and a beautiful, mysterious woman named Silvia (Alanis Morissette – Weeds), Nick finds himself drawn into a conspiracy of cosmic, mind-shattering proportions. Although it might cost them their freedom or even their lives, they join
forces to expose the dangerous truth about the corrupt regime.

FDM’s CEO Susan Jackson brokered the deal directly with Simon’s Discovery Productions, which will join forces with FDM on the release. Discovery was repped in the deal by Matthew Fladell, Esquire.
“Philip K. Dick is a legend in the sci-fi world,” said Jackson, “Radio Free Albemuth” is one of the truest adaptations of his vision and will be loved by his core fans as well as fans of the genre.”

“The big-budget, effects-heavy studio movies made from Dick’s works have often emphasized one ‘high concept’ idea to try to create exciting action movies. I took the indie route in order to have the freedom to make a movie that captures all the other aspects that reader/fans like myself love – Dick’s dark humor, politics, visionary metaphysics, borderline paranoia, and especially his tender view of the human condition,” said Simon.

The source novel for the film was considered to be Dick’s answer to Orwell’s 1984 and is still one of his most prescient works — a powerful sci-fi conspiracy thriller that underlines the conflict of individual rights against the power of the state.

The following is a list of Dick’s highest profile screen adaptations:

  • Blade Runner (1982) from Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (1968)
  • Total Recall (1990) from We Can Remember It for You Wholesale (1966)
  • Minority Report (2002) from The Minority Report (1956)
  • A Scanner Darkly (2006): adapted from novel of the same name
  • Adjustment Bureau (2011) from story Adjustment Team
  • Total Recall (Summer 2012) from We Can Remember It For You Wholesale

Recent Freestyle titles include the box office hit GOD’S NOT DEAD, TIGER EYES, the first big screen adaptation of a Judy Blume novel starring Willa Holland, and the SXSW festival favorite FUNERAL KINGS from the McManus Brothers and the upcoming THE IDENTICAL starring Ashley Judd and Ray Liotta.

Website: www.freestyledigitalmedia.tv

About Freestyle Releasing:

Freestyle Releasing is a full-service, theatrical motion picture distribution company that specializes in representing independent companies, major studios, and mini-major studios for the purpose of exhibiting their films in a first class theatrical release. The founders and principals of Freestyle Releasing, Mark Borde and Susan Jackson are highly regarded and experienced motion picture veterans with a combined total of over a century of respected work in the industry. From a platform that delivers an anytime-anywhere capability in the medium of their choice and a positive digital viewing experience on any device in any location.

About Freestyle Digital Media

Freestyle Digital Media, LLC was launched in November 2011 by its CEO Susan Jackson who is Co-President and founder of independent theatrical distributor Freestyle Releasing, LLC and North American sales company Turtles Crossing, LLC. Freestyle Digital Media supplies quality commercial film and TV content directly to all US VOD/SVOD rental DVD/Kiosks and theaters using the latest cloud-based technologies to automate digital workflow. Freestyle’s goal is to provide fresh, well-marketed product and stay on the cutting edge of the ever-compressing windows to ensure that their partners benefit from a platform that delivers an anytime-anywhere capability in the medium of their choice and a positive digital viewing experience on any device in any location.

About Discovery Productions

Discovery Productions is a production company that primarily specializes in movie adaptations. Development projects include other Philip K. Dick properties (“Flow My Tears The Policeman Said” and “VALIS”), Jim Thompson novels (“Nothing More Than Murder” and “Pop 1280”) as well as novels and short stories by Hugo-Award winning author Lucius Shepard. The distribution arm of Discovery has successfully rereleased cult classics like the original “The Wicker Man”, “The Haunting of Julia” and Dennis Hopper’s “Out Of The Blue.”

Here is the new trailer at youtube:

Copyright © 2014 Prodigy Public Relations, All rights reserved.

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Official Philip K. Dick Website Offline

From the questions and comments I’ve seen, many of the you may have noticed that the Official Philip K. Dick Website, http://www.philipkdick.com is offline and all that is displayed is:

I don’t know what happened to the site. Because of my experience, I have some facts about the situation. The site went offline sometime at the end sometime between June 23, 2013 and July 28, 2013 (http://web.archive.org/web/*/http://www.philipkdick.com/). The domain name hasn’t expired (http://who.godaddy.com/whois.aspx). I would guess that the message is coming either from a hosting services servers or a content management system, but at this point I haven’t investigated that avenue very much.

What I have been working on is capturing as much of the old site as I can to either archive it here (if allowed) or for my own personal use. What happens to the site is entirely up to Electric Shepherd Productions LLC. I have reached out to my contacts within the organization to offer help about 1-2 weeks ago and haven’t had a response. I strongly feel that the www.philipkdick.com domain needs to be active or at least have some web presence. That domain is the one that used to drive the most traffic in (besides Wikipedia and imdb.com). This site is now 3rd when I search for “Philip K. Dick” so at least there is some location that can attract fans or new explorers to learn about Philip K. Dick.

Meanwhile, here is a screen capture from the old(?) www.philipkdick.com

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Radio Free Albemuth Has Been Fully Funded And More! (Updated)

Radio Free AlbemuthThe Kickstarter campaign has finished and the total amount pledged by 827 backers was $92,267.

Congratulations to the Radio Free Albemuth Kickstarter Project team for meeting their Kickstarter goal and exceeding it. Backers are still submitting pledges and as an update from the project says any money above the goal will be used for additional screenings, ads and publicity.

I’m so ecstatic that this Kickstarter project was fully funded and I contributed a tiny part of the overall goal. From what I’ve heard this movie is a very faithful adaption of the novel and a great movie also. I have wanted to see it since it was released but it was only shown rarely at conferences or other events that I have been unable to attend.

The most recent post from the team:
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/elizabethkarr/radio-free-albemuth-theatrical-release/posts/527078

You can still go here and make a pledge (or increase your plaedge) until Wednesday Jul 3, 2:02 pm EDT
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/elizabethkarr/radio-free-albemuth-theatrical-release

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Paul Williams Died Last Night (Updated With More Media Links)

I just heard the news that Paul Williams has died last night, March 27, 2013. I knew Paul through his association with promoting the works of Philip K. Dick. Even though I never talked with him in person or met him, I feel a sort of kinship with him. I am very sorry to hear of his passing and offer my condolences to Cindy Lee Berryhill (http://cindyleeberryhill.blogspot.com/) and the others close to him.

I first heard of Paul when he was the executor of the Philip K. Dick Estate and when the Philip K. Dick Newsletter was being published. I mailed him my scraped together $75 (I was a college student at the time with little spare money.) and I received all the back issues of the newsletter just a few months (newsletter issues) before he decided to stop publishing it. Those issues have been unstapled and archived in a binder in Mylar plastic pages. The cassette tape has been transferred to a digital copy because I no longer have a cassette player but I still have kept that tape. Those newsletters are one of my most prized possessions especially since that they are essentially out of print right now. I have also carefully digitized every page to insure that I will always be able to read them.

Even more prized is my signed copy of “Only Apparently Real: The World of Philip K. Dick” that I also scratched the money to mail Paul, himself, and he mailed me a copy that he had beautifully signed. That book was my first reference work on the life and writings of Philip K. Dick and the first one I read. I still keep it in a special location on my bookshelf.

After many years of thinking of Paul Williams as mainly the Philip K. Dick Estate’s executor, I looked into what he had also accomplished in his life and I was amazed at what he had started, especially in Rock journalism (Crawdaddy!) and where he had been and what he’d seen. Things that I’d read about and he was there in person. I also saw that he wrote many books and after reading about his most famous ones on his site http://www.paulwilliams.com/, I purchased from ebay a used copy of Das Energi and read it in a few short hours but I was enthralled with the simplicity and the genius in that book about how to live a more happy and fulfilled life.

Hearing of his passing, I was disappointed with myself that I didn’t post the invitation to his celebratory party in a timely manner. I have been chronically behind on posted news and updates to the Philip K. Dick Fan Site and the Philip K. Dick Festival page (The festival was created in his honor and helps/hopes to raise money on his behalf.) So I will post the beautiful email invite that I received eleven days ago that I wish I had posted before the event.

There are also pictures from the event posted here:

http://cindyleeberryhill.blogspot.com/2013/03/paul-williamscrawdaddy-day-boo-hooray.html

I know that there are many more people who were closer to Paul Williams and I know that their grief can’t compare to mine but I am saddened at the loss of such a great mind, probably more saddened than when I read about his accident several years ago. I will work to keep his spirit and passion in the things that I do and I hope I can continue at least a tiny bit of his accomplishments by promoting the work and scholarship of Philip K. Dick.

Here are some media links to the news of Paul William’s passing that are just coming online:

http://www.billboard.com/biz/articles/news/global/1554929/paul-williams-crawdaddy-founder-a-godfather-of-rock-criticism-and

http://io9.com/r-i-p-paul-williams-pioneering-music-journalist-and-p-461838276

http://totaldickhead.blogspot.com/2013/03/paul-williams-1948-2013.html

http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/paul-williams-rock-criticism-pioneer-dead-at-64-20130328

http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2013/mar/28/paul-williams-dies/

http://www.tinymixtapes.com/news/rip-paul-williams-founder-of-influential-rock-crit-magazine-crawdaddy

http://www.locusmag.com/News/2013/03/paul-williams-1948-2013/

http://www.spin.com/articles/paul-williams-crawdaddy-rock-journalist-dead-obituary

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/rock-journalist-paul-s-williams-crawdaddy-431624

http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/sns-rt-us-media-paulwilliams-obitbre92r158-20130328,0,3056893.story

http://www.cnn.com/2013/03/28/showbiz/paul-williams-obit/

http://hisvorpal.wordpress.com/2013/03/28/paul-williams-is-dead-at-64/

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Public Domain Philip K. Dick Stories

I sense something brewing with the issue of incorrectly managed copyright renewals and Public Domain Philip K. Dick stories. We have already seen the news about the producers refusing to finish paying for the rights to Adjustment Team and there are eleven stories that have been put into Project Gutenberg that I have archived on this site also. These facts appear to be generally known.

At SFFaudio.com there have been two articles that makes me believe first that they are researching the topic and second that there are many other short stories that are now in the Public Domain that few people realize. Their article Commentary: Philip K. Dick’s PUBLIC DOMAIN short stories, novelettes and novellas is the most stunning for me. The article details the status of each story and I count twenty-six in the Public Domain with seven more likely.

These are the stories in the Public Domain:

  1. Beyond Lies The Wub
  2. The Gun
  3. The Skull
  4. The Defenders
  5. Mr. Spaceship
  6. Piper In The Woods
  7. Second Variety
  8. The Eyes Have It
  9. The Hanging Stranger
  10. Tony And The Beetles
  11. Beyond The Door
  12. The Crystal Crypt
  13. The Golden Man
  14. Prominent Author
  15. Small Town
  16. The Turning Wheel
  17. Breakfast At Twilight
  18. Exhibit Piece
  19. Shell Game
  20. Adjustment Team
  21. Meddler
  22. The Last of the Masters (aka Protection Agency)
  23. Progeny
  24. Upon The Dull Earth
  25. Foster, You’re Dead
  26. Human Is
These are the stories likely in the Public Domain:

  1. Roog
  2. James P. Crow
  3. Survey Team
  4. Time Pawn
  5. The Chromium Fence
  6. A Surface Raid
  7. Vulcan’s Hammer

Another article,Copyfraud by the Philip K. Dick estate for Philip K. Dick stories published in 1954 and 1955, color codes a copyright form and most of the stories are listed to be in publications or issues that they do not appear in. The vividness of this image jumps out at the reader.

This is the list of incorrect entries:

  1. Shell Game
  2. James P. Crow
  3. The Golden Man
  4. Small Town
  5. Survey Team
  6. Foster, You’re Dead!
  7. Upon the Dull Earth
  8. The Turning Wheel
  9. Prominent Author
  10. Sales Pitch
  11. Breakfast at Twilight
  12. Of Withered Apples
  13. Jon’s World
  14. The Crawlers
  15. Time Pawn
  16. A World of Talent
  17. Adjustment Team
  18. Souvenir
  19. Progeny
  20. Human Is
  21. Meddler
  22. The Last of the Masters (aka Protection Agency)
  23. Strange Eden
  24. Exhibit Piece
  25. The Father-thing

There is some overlap but I think that the years covered are 1952-1955 and that the research beyond those years hasn’t occurred yet. At the rate this is going there won’t be much that isn’t in the Public Domain. This would be a huge waste of potential revenue that Electric Shepherd Productions will lose if they no longer own the rights to all these stories. And I’m not aware of the legal aspects or issues if any of the films made have recourse to sue for fraud.

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Update For iPad Users: Exegesis :: BookPulse

Exegesis :: BookPulseI noticed on another blog that there is a lite version of the Exegesis :: BookPulse application that only includes the first few chapters of the Exegesis but appears to have all the other features. It is free and seems to me to be a good way to test the application out before you buy the full version. (Unfortunately, I don’t happen to own an iPad…)

The lite version is here: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/the-exegesis-philip-k.-dick/id492161170.

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Help Philip K. Dick’s Fifth Wife, Tessa Dick

Tessa Dick Plea For HelpThere is an youtube video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jvF2XMD7fks) circulating the fan base in which Tessa Dick, Philip K. Dick’s Fifth Wife, pleads for financial help because she is struggling much more than many of us are. She is disabled and waiting on the paperwork to be processed which takes some time.

If you would like to make a donation to her, send it to her by Paypal to tuffy777@gmail.com or snail mail:

Tessa Dick
PO Box 1942
Crestline, CA 92325-1942


But if you would rather not donate directly, I would strongly encourage you to purchase one of her books. I don’t believe that one biography, one viewpoint can describe someone’s life. With the recent publication of the Exegesis of Philip K. Dick, one excellent choice is Remembering Firebright because she was present when he was experiencing and writing about the events in the Exegesis. I am reading it right now and the second viewpoint on events that I have become familiar with from Philip K. Dick’s telling is fascinating. Without the other viewpoints, we risk falling into solipsism like Dick was fond of writing and considering.

You can purchase her books at Tessa’s Amazon Author Page. A review of Remembering Firebright will be posted on http://www.philipkdickfans.com soon.

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For iPad Users: Exegesis :: BookPulse

Exegesis :: BookPulseHoughton Mifflin Harcourt recently released their iPad application for The Exegesis called ExegesisBookpulse in the iTunes store. There is also a Facebook page for the appplication called Exegesis :: BookPulse. The application allows you to share annotations, interact with other readers, connect with Facebook and share your reading experience. It is available on the iPad and will soon be available on the iPhone, iPod Touch, and Android.

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Call for Papers: Worlds Out of Joint: Re-Imagining Philip K. Dick

An International Conference from 15-18 November, 2012 at TU Dortmund University, Germany

2012 sees the thirtieth anniversary of the untimely death, at the age of 53, of Philip K. Dick – a figure whose cultural impact within and beyond science fiction remains difficult to overestimate. Dick’s academic and popular reputation continues to grow, as a number of recent monographs, several biographies and an unceasing flow of film adaptations testify. Yet while his status as “The Most Brilliant Sci-Fi Mind on Any Planet” (Paul Williams) is rarely questioned, scholarly criticism of Dick has not kept pace with recent developments in academia – from transnationalism to adaptation studies, from the cultural turn in historiography to the material turn in the humanities. Too often Dick remains shrouded in clichés and myth. Indeed, rarely since the seminal contributions of Fredric Jameson and Darko Suvin have our engagements with Dick proved equal to the complexity of his writing – an oeuvre indebted to the pulps and Goethe, Greek philosophy and the Beats – that calls for renewed attempts at a history of popular culture. The aim of this conference is to contribute to such an undertaking.

At a time when mass protest against irrational economic, political and cultural orders is once again erupting around the world, the Dortmund conference will return to one of the major figures of the long American Sixties: to an author whose prophetic analyses of biopolitical capitalism and the neo-authorian surveillance state remain as pertinent as they were 30 years ago.

Confirmed keynote speakers: Marc Bould (University of the West of England, Bristol), Roger Luckhurst (Birbeck, University of London) and Norman Spinrad (New York/Paris).

Possible topics for panels and papers include but are in no way limited to:

 

  • The Realist Novels: What do Dick’s early realist novels add to our understanding of his work? In what relation do they stand to late modernist and realist U.S. literature? Can they be understood as Beat writing?
  • Transnational Approaches: Dick drew on various European and non-European cultures, and his SF worlds are highly transnational in their hybridity: What cultural transfers and transformations are evident in his work?
  • Dick’s Global Reception: Dick’s fiction has been widely translated – from Portuguese to Japanese, from Finnish to Hebrew. Yet we know little about his global reception. How has Dick’s work been read abroad, and transformed in translation? What has been his impact on SF outside America?
  • Dick and the SF Tradition: Critics have rarely engaged in-depth with Dick’s contribution to SF. What is Dick’s debt to the pulp magazines, to Robert Heinlein, A. E. van Vogt, or other SF authors? To what extent did Dick influence his contemporaries, and what does today’s SF owe to him?
  • Dick and Fandom: Long before his canonization as a literary figure, Dick was a cult author, and he retains a committed fan base. How has fandom shaped the way we read him? What role does Dick play in SF cultures of fandom today?
  • Narrative Structures and Aesthetics: Dick’s short fiction and novels are linked by common motifs, tropes and fictional devices. How do they shape his writing? His status as a popular writer has also meant that the aesthetic dimension of Dick’s fiction has often been neglected. How can it help us understand his work?
  • Dick and Mainstream Literature: Dick’s impact on ‘serious’ literature has often been posited but rarely analyzed. What do Thomas Pynchon, Kurt Vonnegut or David Foster Wallace owe to Dick? What role have his writings played in the integration of SF into mainstream literature?
  • Adaptations: What makes Dick’s writing so attractive to filmmakers? How have these visual narratives changed our understanding of his work? Should we pay more attention to adaptations to other media – from opera to computer games?
  • The Letters and Journals: How do Dick’s letters and journals, as well as interviews with him change our understanding of his fiction?
  • The Final Novels: Dick’s late novels are gaining increasing attention, but critical evaluations vary widely. Are they evidence of a spiritual turn in Dick’s writing? How do they allow us to look at his work of the 1960s anew?
  • Dick and the Sixties: Recent scholarship drastically has changed our understanding of the Sixties. Does this necessitate a re-writing of Dick? What can we learn from the contradictions and achievements that shaped this era and Dick’s writing?
  • Dick and Global Capitalism: How do Dick’s analyses of global capitalism, mediatized politics and individualized consumer culture correspond to our own present?

Please send an abstract of no more than 500 words and a short biographical sketch to Stefan[dot]Schlensag[at]udo[dot]edu before 29 February 2012. Presenters will be asked to submit a full version of their 20-minute presentation by 31 August, and an electronic reader will be distributed before the conference to all participants. A selection of the papers given at the conference will be published in book form.

Conference Organizers:

Walter Grünzweig, Randi Gunzenhäuser, Sybille Klemm, Stefan Schlensag, Florian Siedlarek, (TU Dortmund University); Alexander Dunst (University of Potsdam) and Damian Podleśny (Krakow)

Conference Director and Contact:

Stefan Schlensag
Institut für Anglistik und Amerikanistik
TU Dortmund University
Emil-Figge-Straße 50
D-44227 Dortmund, Germany
Stefan[dot]Schlensag[at]udo[dot]edu

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2012 Philip K. Dick Festival

Philip K. Dick in 21st Century

The Largest Gathering of PKD Scholars and Fans Ever Assembled in North America, A Multi-disciplinary Celebration of the Legendary California Writer

2012 Philip K. Dick FestivalPhilip K. Dick is arguably one of the most important writers of the 21st century. Dick’s uncanny prescience not only foretold of our current surveillance technology and color-coded terror, but additionally captured the narcissism and psychological withdrawal that defines the early part of this new century. Considered at the time of his death to be little more than a genre writer, Dick’s burgeoning literary reputation was kindled by a handful of fans and scholars. With his recent canonization in the prestigious Library of America and the 2011 publication of Dick’s esoteric religious notes, The Exegesis, now is the time to examine Dick’s influence and how he became such an important literary figure. The Bay Area, home to Dick for the majority of his lifetime, is also the perfect location for the event, allowing fans and scholars to step into Dick’s own past and retrace his steps in this vibrant city by the bay. Sept 22-23, 2012 will be a weekend long celebration and examination of Dick’s life and work.

The conference’s guest of honor will be none other than Jonathan Lethem, the editor for Philip K Dick’s three volumes from the prestigious Library of America, an editor of The Exegesis of Philip K Dick (from Houghton Mifflin), and a celebrated novelist in his own right. Lethem currently holds the Roy E. Disney Chair in Creative Writing at Pomona College and his writing about Philip K Dick appears in his essay collections The Disappointment Artist, and The Ecstasy of Influence.

Other confirmed guests include: Pam Jackson (Editor, Philip K Dick’s Exegesis), Erik Davis (Annotations Editor for the recent publication of The Exegesis), John Simon (director of Radio Free Albemuth), Sam Umland (Chair of English Department at University of Nebraska Kearney and author of Contemporary Critical Interpretations: Philip K Dick), Douglas Mackey (author of Philip K Dick, Twayne’s United States Author Series), Umberto Rossi (independent scholar and author of The Twisted Worlds of Philip K Dick), Marc Haefele (an Assistant Editor at Doubleday who worked with Philip K Dick on his masterpiece novels Ubik and Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?), William Sarill (a longtime friend of Philip K Dick who helped Dick develop the religious system in his novel A Maze of Death), and many, many more.

Stay tuned for more information about the schedule and lodging in San Francisco. If you are interested in either presenting or attending, please contact conference organizer, David Gill: dcgill[at]sfsu[dot]edu. We are currently looking for speakers to give cogent and plain-spoken presentations on the following aspects of Dick’s life and work:

  1. Biographical
  2. Literary Criticism
  3. Science Fiction
  4. Cinematic Translations
  5. Sociology and Psychology
  6. Religion and Philosophy
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Exegesis Article With Excerpt

Slate posted a short article today about the publication of the Exegesis.  I have archived it on this site in pdf format Philip K. Dick Loses Touch With Reality.

I liked the article on something struck when I was reading the excerpt.  The Exegesis consists of notes and writings that can range in length from a multi-page discussion to a tiny note on a scrap of paper.  I was curious how the book captures this feeling if at all.  I have flipped through it and noticed that it was organized into sections based on the folders Paul Williams put the writing into.  That’s one thing that has always fascinated me about the Exegesis because it seems like it should be unpublishable due to it’s structure and I don’t think that Philip K. Dick ever intended to have it published.  I believe he was using it like a journal but the book or notepad structure was not kept.  I have found myself writing things out similarly to work through or think through issues I have had recently.  My idea to do it came from his original work.  And I won’t be trying to publish what I wrote in this manner.

I don’t want to dishonor anyone’s effort because I am glad it’s been published and the task must have been monumental to organize it so that it doesn’t seem like a bunch of writer’s notes strung together.  Or another tack is to weave and edit all the text together so that it flows like one cohesive piece of writing.  I hope this avenue wasn’t taken because I like the viewpoint that the ideas were explored and built up over time.  From what I understand this is how the first publication from the Exegesis was organized.  But I have heard that the compilers of the work intended to keep the integrity of the original writing intact.  If anyone has picked up The Exegesis of Philip K. Dick and can help with these questions, please add a comment.

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Exegesis Is Here!


I haven’t posted anything about the release of The Exegesis of Philip K. Dick because I assumed that anyone who likes Philip K. Dick knows about this because of the importance of this release.

I have a copy of the first release of the Exegesis and have only read parts of it because it is difficult to choose to read it over reading VALIS which is my favorite book and one that explains parts of the Exegesis so I get my fix from that.

I haven’t picked up my copy of this yet (I’m sure I will soon). I tend to buy all of my most desired books on the day of release.  If anyone would like to post mini-reviews in the comments or send a full length review, I will post (or allow) them here.

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