Credits    Navigation      www.philipkdickfans.com     Novels    Short Stories     References

NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR
aaPinkBeam.GIF (249 bytes) aaPinkBeam.GIF (249 bytes) aaPinkBeam.GIF (249 bytes) aaPinkBeam.GIF (249 bytes)

Num

N S

Writing Date

Pub. Date

Previous

Next

Notes

133

32  

<Dec 1963

May 1966

THE SIMULACRA

THE ZAP GUN

 

FIRST EDITION

1966 IMAGE224.JPG (4288 bytes) NWFLY DD 66 first Doubleday, hb, 66-017393, May 1966, 214pp, $3.95 (Lawrence Ratzkin) {Levack: "Bound in charcoal black cloth with gold lettering on the spine. '1966' on the title page. 'First Edition' on the copyright page. Date code H9 [9th week of 1966] at the lower right margin of page 214."}
     
1975  IMAGE227.JPG (3666 bytes) Panther, pb, 04208-3, Jun 1975, 224pp, 50p (Chris Foss)
HISTORY

    The manuscript for NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR reached the SMLA on Dec 4, 1963. The novel was sold to Doubleday and was published in hardback in May 1966.

    Apparently the novel did not make Dick too much money as a 1968 letter from Doubleday gives royalty statements for a six-month period in early 1968. The amount is a trifling $6.32 for NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR. This compares to $671.38 for DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP?

    In 1988 NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR shared the Gilgamesh Award for Best SF Novel (for works first appearing in Spanish in 1988) with George R.R. Martin's TUF VOYAGING and Jack Vance's DEMON PRINCES.

    The situation with NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR is similar to that of THE GAME-PLAYERS OF TITAN – not much has been said about the novel other than occasional critical comments. PKD himself refers to it on a couple of occasions, as follows:

    Yes, well, we touched on another topic in the interview I had with those people and that was my attitude toward drugs. They said, isn't there an affinity between you and Timothy Leary's attitude toward drugs? And I said, well, actually a scrupulous reading of my novels that deal with drugs such as 3 STIGMATA OF PALMER ELDRITCH, NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR, "Faith Of Our Fathers", and A MAZE OF DEATH show the possibility -- again we get into the area of possibility, not certitude -- that there are really just a whole number of things happening in 3 STIGMATA and in NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR, The drug is destructive, it's addictive, it's used as a government weapon as a matter of fact.

    And:

    When a novel of mine comes out I have no more relationship to it than has anyone who reads it -- far less, in fact, because I have the memory of Mr. Tagomi and all the others... Gino Molinari, for example, in NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR, or Leo Bulero in 3 STIGMATA. My friends are dead, and as much as I love my wife, daughter, cat -- none of these nor all of these is enough. The vacuum is terrible. Don't write for a living; sell shoelaces. Don't let it happen to you.

    And in a 1967 letter PKD wrote to his friend, Cynthia:

    The war depresses me, too. I think we ought to get out of Viet Nam (I don't usually talk politics, but on this point I'm rabid). I wrote my feelings out in a recent Doubleday book of mine, called NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR, in which Earth is on the wrong side in an interstellar war, and is just beginning to realize it. Earth's political leader wants to get out, but how? ... I think you and Lou will both approve the underlying theme of the book: the horrid intimation of being involved on the wrong side in the wrong war..

   That’s about it for comments on NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR. As for the critics, they were amazed as usual by Dick’s daring inventiveness. Bruce Gillespie, for instance, commented:

    The occurrences in Philip Dick's novels are impossible. In what future will you find (a) one man who may exhibit all the signs of an illness of a man in the next room, (b) a process by which time devolves around a modern man without him going mad, or the whole chemistry of his body collapsing, or (c) a drug (JJ-180, the star of NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR) that literally, magically, turns back the tides of time, wipes out memory or transfers people between different time zones, all in the space of one second? More importantly, how often would you find people who would know what was going on when these things happened? Yet try to invent a science that will explain all the elements in NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR, for instance.

    In the story, Earth is in an uneasy alliance with the alien but human-looking supermen from Lillistar and are fighting a war against the insect-like Reegs. The war is not going well and the ‘Starmen want Earth to put more effort into it. But Terra’s leader, Gino Molinari, manages to forestall extra conscripts by having a series of near-fatal illnesses at the last minute thus frustrating the ‘Starmen. How can Molinari die and then reappear again better than ever? Well, that's the riddle of the book... And then there’s the time-shifting drug JJ-180 to consider…

    NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR should deserve


OTHER EDITIONS             For Cover Pix click here: aaaPKDickBooks.jpg (3234 bytes)

FOREIGN EDITIONS:


NOTES

PKDS-2 10:

Publication date: May 6, 1966

PKDS-15 11:

In France, NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR is coming out in a new edition from the leading paperback publisher, Le Livre de Poche.

PKDS-16 1:

Records at the Scott Meredith Literary Agency in New York indicate that the outline {for THE ZAP GUN} {...} was received by the Agency December 5, 1963 (one day after the recorded receipt of the manuscript of NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR.)

PKDS-24 11:

NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR shared the Gilgamesh Award for Best SF Novel (for works first appearing in Spanish in 1988) with George R.R. Martin's Tuf Voyaging and Jack Vance's Demon Princes. {This would be the edition from Ediciones Jucar translated into Spanish as AGUARDANDO EL ANO PASADO -- Lord RC}

See BGSU Papers. Marcia M. Howell > PKD, Aug 29, 1968

SF EYE #14, Spring 1996, p.38 Interviewer Uwe Anton and Werner Fuchs, transcribed by Frank C. Bertrand.

See: TSR 19

See SF Commentary 9 February 1970, pp. 11–25, Bruce Gillespie on NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR.

Ken Lopez online catalog (Dec 2003)

{On a package of letters to Cyntha Goldstine offered for sale, Lopez writes:} Throughout the letters there are insights into his novels. In one letter dated "January 3, 1960 something" [actually 1967], he writes "The war depresses me, too. I think we ought to get out of Viet Nam (I don't usually talk politics, but on this point I'm rabid). I wrote my feelings out in a recent Doubleday book of mine, called NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR, in which Earth is on the wrong side in an interstellar war, and is just beginning to realize it. Earth's political leader wants to get out, but how? ... I think you and Lou will both approve the underlying theme of the book: the horrid intimation of being involved on the wrong side in the wrong war..." {See: http://www.lopezbooks.com/}


"I won't get you in trouble," Kathy said. I think I'll get you addicted to JJ-180, she said to herself. That's what you deserve; everyone who helped develop it, who knows about it. Stay with me night and day during the next 24 hours, she thought. Eat with me, go to bed with me, and by the time it's over you'll be earmarked for death just as I am. And then, she thought, maybe I can get Eric on it. Him most of all.


Collector's Notes

Phildickian: NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR, MacFadden, pb, 60-352, 1968. G+ $7.50

Phildickian: NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR, DAW, pb, 1981. VG+ $10

Phildickian: NOW WAIT FOR LAST YEAR, Vintage, tp, 1992. 2nd printing. NF $10


Credits    Navigation      www.philipkdickfans.com     Novels    Short Stories     References