Songs of the Dying Earth: Stories in Honor of Jack Vance
George R. R. Martin
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Today, in order to honor the magnificent career of Jack Vance, one unparalleled in achievement and impact, GEORGE R.R. MARTIN and GARDNER DOZOIS, with the full cooperation of Jack Vance, his family, and his agents, suggest a Jack Vance tribute anthology called Songs of the Dying Earth, to encourage the best of today's fantasy writers to return to the unique and evocative milieu of The Dying Earth, from which they and so many others have drawn so much inspiration, to create their own brand-new adventures in the world of Jack Vance s greatest novel.
Half a century ago, Jack Vance created the world of the Dying Earth, and fantasy has never been the same. Now, for the first time ever, Jack has agreed to open this bizarre and darkly beautiful world to other fantasists, to play in as their very own. To say that other fantasy writers are excited by this prospect is a gross understatement; one has told us that he'd crawl through broken glass for the chance to write for the anthology, another that he'd gladly give up his right arm for the privilege that's the kind of regard in which Jack Vance and The Dying Earth are held by generations of his peers.
have you languished here among your toadstools and toxic chanterells, Saloona Morn! At great danger to myself, I have secured you an invitation so that you may sample the Paeolinas’ nettlefish froth and their fine baked viands, also a cellar known throughout the Metarin Mountains for vintages as rare as they are temulent. Still you remain skeptical of my motivations.” Saloona rose and went to stand beside the fire witch. Small flaws now flecked the window, like tiny craters or starbursts. The
merchant clothes and cap in a silent flash of blue vortex, and dressed himself silently in his most elegant dark-gray tunic, pantaloons, and flowing robe made of the rarest spidersilk. Then he jinkered the carpet to life, brought it to a hover four feet above the floor, and climbed aboard with his shoulder valise. “Did you just plan to leave me a note?” whispered Derwe Coreme. Shrue the diabolist had not stuttered since his youth—a youth lost in the tides of time—but he came close to doing so
the blinding light, felt the wind whip past him. Something smacked and engulfed him: water, brackish, warm, and Farfal floundered, too surprised to breathe. Then he surfaced, his head breaking water, and he gulped air. And then he pushed himself through the water, until his hands grasped some kind of plant, and he pulled himself, on hands and feet, out of the green water, and up onto a spongy dry land, trailing and trickling water as he went. “The light,” said the man at Denny’s. “The light was
Philip K Dick Award, some years ago in Seattle, for that book. And, during the convention, I interviewed Jack Vance. I told him it was all his fault. ‘Godammit,’ he growled. ‘You gotta be so careful with stuff like that.’ —Liz Williams Mike Resnick Inescapable Sometimes you’re better off if your heart’s desire is out of reach… Mike Resnick is one of the best-selling authors in science fiction, and one of the most prolific. His many novels include Santiago, The Dark Lady, Stalking The
visible effort and subsided once more into remoteness. Puillayne said, “An interesting theory: the cumulative infamies and iniquities of our species, do you say, have taken a toll on the sun itself over the many millennia, and so we are the architects of our own extinction?” “It could be, yes.” “Then it is too late to embrace virtue, I suspect,” said Puillayne dolefully. “Through our incorrigible miscreancy we have undone ourselves beyond repair. The damage is surely irreversible in this late