the Little Red Reviewer

Guest post: on SciFi Author Brian Stableford

Posted on: January 10, 2013

Today’s post comes to us from nrlymrtl (pronounced Nearly Mortal, not Gnarly Myrtle), webmistress of Dab of Darkness and contributor at Dark Cargo. Thanks to the hardworking folks at Wildside Press who are making a large number of Stableford titles available as ebooks, nrlymrtl has been able to discover and enjoy a new-to-her author.   Here’s her thoughts on some of his writings:

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Biologist, Sociologist, Writer: Brian Stableford

by nrlymrtl

In 2012, I discovered Brian Stableford and his Daedalus Mission books (The Florians, Critical Threshold, Wildeblood’s Empire, The City of the Sun, Balance of Power, & The Paradox of the Sets) as published by Wildside Press. The gorgeous, detailed covers on the Wildside Press additions are also an attraction. As a biologist, these books drew me in right away because of the underlying ecological and biological principles as applied to colonizing other worlds. Even on Earth, no matter where we go, we have always had to bargain with Nature, and she has not always been an easy bargainer. Spreading Humanity across the Universe is not only a daunting task mechanically, financially, engineeringly, but also in learning to manipulate new environments and ourselves long term biologically.

And that challenge, met not just in a few years, but rather haphazardly some generations later, is what captivated me about these books. So, of course, I had to read up on Stableford. Who is this man, how many more of his books are out there, and how many should-be-sleeping hours can I physically give up to his books?

The more I learned about this man, the more I appreciated him. This Brit graduated with a biology degree in 1969 and went on to study sociology, complete with a PhD thesis titled, ‘The Sociology of Science Fiction‘ in 1979. At over 70 novels, he is still writing and publishing today, so no worries that I will run out of quality reading material anytime soon.

Over the years, Stableford has provided some interesting interviews where he has shared his views on Dragonlance Novels and his collaborative process with Dave Langford on The Third Millennium. Indeed, I had fun perusing through these, appreciating his honesty on a variety of things. Learning from Locus Online’s interview about Stableford’s French-to-English translations for proto-SF works, I had to look them up. Happily, many of them are published by Black Coat Press, such as the translated works of Paul Feval.

As you can see, there are many, many Stableford works (what diversity!) to keep me happily reading for some time to come. I hope his works also make it to your bedside book cache.

7 Responses to "Guest post: on SciFi Author Brian Stableford"

Hi Andrea, thank you for having me over. In putting this post together, I also had fun digging up some of the older book covers, with their 1970s art. Stableford was a lot of fun to research and I think knowing that much more about his work will make future books I read by him even more entertaining.


These book covers are great. I particularly like the last one. For some strange reason it just makes me think of Lost in Space. Don’t really know why!
Lynn 😀


Yeah! They’re suppose to be semi-lost in a jungle, so I like how they have no pants! Sometimes even adventure scientists must forgo practicalities and comfort in the pursuit of fashion.


If I didn’t take anything else away from this it was beneficial to learn what ” nrlymrtl” meant and how it was pronounced, lol!

But I also learned some nice things about an author that I knew of in name only but knew nothing about him, what he wrote, etc. And I’m glad that you have an author you enjoy so much who also has a large volume of books to keep you satisfied. That is the bad thing about falling hard for these newer authors, you have to wait forever for their next book to come out!


That is so true – I can definitely enjoy Stableford’s body of work for several years to come, and won’t easily run out of books to read.

nrlymrtl is simply the Egyptian spelling as they often skipped over the vowels sounds in their spellings. Yet one more thing that made deciphering the various hieroglyphs tricky.


[…] Vintage Scifi Month and she asked me to do a guest post on something vintage and scifi-ish. I chose Brian Stableford, who has been writing SF longer than I have been alive. Make sure to stop by over there and check […]


Unkind words about Dragonlance! Blasphemy!


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some of the books reviewed here were free ARCs supplied by publishers/authors/other groups. Some of the books here I got from the library. the rest I *gasp!* actually paid for. I'll do my best to let you know what's what.
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