By Isaac Asimov
New one-volume autobiography spans Asimov's existence for the 1st time!
As some of the most talented and prolific writers of the 20 th century, Isaac Asimov grew to become mythical for his inexhaustible creativity, wide-ranging highbrow interest, and ability for explaining advanced matters in transparent, concise prose. whereas regaling his readers with a big opus of virtually enjoyable and illuminating technological know-how fiction and nonfiction books, he additionally stumbled on time to jot down a three-volume autobiography. Now those volumes were condensed into one through Asimov's spouse, Janet, who additionally stocks excerpts from letters he wrote to her. jointly those writings offer an intimate portrait of an artistic genius whose love of studying and fiddling with rules is obvious on each web page.
Reading this autobiography is like sitting down with Isaac Asimov and experiencing his witty, enticing, and extraordinary character firsthand. we're handled to many extraordinary tales approximately his upbringing in Depression-era Brooklyn, his early fascination with the recent technology fiction pulp magazines, the joys of his first released tale, the production of his recognized tale "Nightfall," the genesis of the basis sequence, and the evolution of his inventive existence as a author.
He additionally unearths his internal concepts approximately and reviews with a variety of luminaries in technological know-how and technology fiction. exceptionally, Asimov's autobiography conveys unbounded enthusiasm for his craft, the infectious pleasure of studying and developing, whole highbrow honesty, his powerful humanist convictions, and his endless fund of excellent humor and optimism even on the finish of his existence - all instructed within the full of life transparent writing type that used to be his trademark.
Although Janet Jeppson Asimov concludes this paintings with a stunning revelation approximately her husband's dying, the quantity is obviously meant as a party - because the name indicates - of a superb, artistic lifestyles. As a poignant coda to this paintings, Janet has appended one brief tale that used to be Isaac's favourite, and his four-hundredth essay in this ideas approximately technological know-how.
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Additional info for It's Been a Good Life
I've got occasionally heard science-fiction writers converse of the effect upon their variety of such high-prestige literary figures of Kafka, Proust, and Joyce. this can good be so for them, yet for myself, I make no such declare. I realized find out how to write technological know-how fiction by means of the attentive analyzing of technology fiction, and one of the significant affects on my kind was once Cliff Simak. by means of October 21, 1938, I had accomplished six tales, 5 of which I had submitted to Campbell and which he had rejected. The tales had piled up 4 different rejections between themselves, in order that the field ranking was once six tales, 9 rejections, no revenues. i'd were dejected by means of this have been it now not for my per thirty days journeys to Campbell ... [and on] October 21, precisely 4 months after my first stopover at to Campbell, [I offered] my 3rd tale, "Marooned off Vesta," ... [and one other] known as "The Weapon Too Dreadful to take advantage of" to awesome tales. the 1st tale I offered to John Campbell was once referred to as "Trends," and it seemed within the July 1939 mind-blowing ... John Campbell used to be a superb believer in great easy names for his writers, and i'm certain that he may often have requested me to exploit a pseudonym at the order of John Smith, and that i may have completely refused to take action, and maybe aborted my writing occupation. although, these early tales in outstanding seemed below my genuine name-Isaac Asimov.... might be as the deed used to be performed and my identify, corresponding to it was once, had graced the contents web page of a sciencefiction journal, Campbell uttered no longer a murmur and my identify seemed in Astounding's august pages in its right shape. [More approximately "Trends," initially referred to as "Ad Asti-a"] i used to be operating for Bernhard J. Stern [a sociology professor at Columbia] ... and because he used to be writing a publication on social resistance to technological swap, he had me examining a superb many books that will conceivably be of use to him. My orders have been to have in mind any passages that handled the topic and to repeat them down. It used to be a liberal schooling for me and that i was once quite struck by way of an entire sequence of [old] articles by way of astronomer Simon Newcomb, which I learn at Stern's course. Newcomb complicated arguments that established the impossibility of heavier-than-air flying machines, and maintained that you'll no longer be outfitted that may hold a guy. whereas those articles have been showing, the Wright brothers flew their airplane. Newcomb countered with an editorial that acknowledged, primarily, "Very good, one guy, yet now not . " each major social strengthen aroused competition at the a part of many, it appeared. good, then, can not house flight, which concerned technological advances, arouse competition too? but I had by no means learn a science-fiction tale during which such competition used to be defined. both the general public function didn't input into the tale in any respect, or if it was once there, it was once defined as wildly approving-rather at the line of the general public response to Lindbergh's solo flight around the Atlantic in 1927, 11 years ahead of (which I simply slightly remembered). i made up my mind as a result to write down a narrative concerning the first makes an attempt to arrive the moon, and to have competition to house flight play a huge position.