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Authors: Theodore Sturgeon

And Now the News

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Theodore Sturgeon, in his office/workshop in Woodstock, New York. This picture, taken circa 1962, was for a glue advertisement in
Scientific American
. The rocket is the International Fantasy Award, received for
More Than Human
in 1954.

Copyright © 2003 the Theodore Sturgeon Literary Trust. Previously published materials copyright © 1955, 1956, 1957, 1999 by Theodore Sturgeon and the Theodore Sturgeon Literary Trust, except “The Waiting Thing Inside” and “The Deadly Innocent,” which are copyright © 1956 by Don Ward and Theodore Sturgeon and the Theodore Sturgeon Literary Trust. All rights reserved. No portion of this book, except for brief review, may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means—electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise—without written permission of the publisher.

Published by
North Atlantic Books
P.O. Box 12327
Berkeley, California 94712

Cover photograph of an ophicleide by Grant D. Green
Cover design by Paula Morrison

And Now the News…
is sponsored by the Society for the Study of Native Arts and Sciences, a nonprofit educational corporation whose goals are to develop an educational and cross-cultural perspective linking various scientific, social, and artistic fields; to nurture a holistic view of arts, sciences, humanities, and healing; and to publish and distribute literature on the relationship of mind, body, and nature.

North Atlantic Books' publications are available through most bookstores. For further information, visit our website at
or call 800-733-3000.

The Library of Congress has cataloged the printed edition as follows:

Sturgeon, Theodore.
   And now the news— / by Theodore Sturgeon ; edited by Paul Williams ; foreword by David G. Hartwell.
       p. cm. — (The complete stories of Theodore Sturgeon ; v. 9)
   eISBN: 978-1-58394-753-1
   1. Science fiction, American.  I. Williams, Paul, 1948–  II. Title.
   PS3569.T875 A6 1994 vol. 9




was born February 26, 1918, and died May 8, 1985. This is the ninth of a series of volumes that will collect all of his short fiction of all types and all lengths shorter than a novel. The volumes and the stories within the volumes are organized chronologically by order of composition (insofar as it can be determined). This ninth volume contains stories written in 1955, 1956, and 1957. Five have never before appeared in a Sturgeon collection.

Preparation of each of these volumes would not be possible without the hard work and invaluable participation of Noël Sturgeon, Debbie Notkin, and our publishers, Lindy Hough and Richard Grossinger. I would also like to thank, for their significant assistance with this volume, David G. Hartwell, the Theodore Sturgeon Literary Trust, Kim Charnovsky, Robin Sturgeon, Marion Sturgeon, Jayne Williams, Ralph Vicinanza, Paula Morrison, Dixon Chandler, Cindy Lee Berryhill, T. V. Reed, and all of you who have expressed your interest and support.


Without Sorcery (1948)

The Dreaming Jewels [aka The Synthetic Man] (1950)

More Than Human (1953)

E Pluribus Unicorn (1953)

Caviar (1955)

A Way Home (1955)

The King and Four Queens (1956)

I, Libertine (1956)

A Touch of Strange (1958)

The Cosmic Rape [aka To Marry Medusa] (1958)

Aliens 4 (1959)

Venus Plus X (1960)

Beyond (1960)

Some of Your Blood (1961)

Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea (1961)

The Player on the Other Side (1963)

Sturgeon in Orbit (1964)

Starshine (1966)

The Rare Breed (1966)

Sturgeon Is Alive and Well … (1971)

The Worlds of Theodore Sturgeon (1972)

Sturgeon's West (with Don Ward) (1973)

Case and the Dreamer (1974)

Visions and Venturers (1978)

Maturity (1979)

The Stars Are the Styx (1979)

The Golden Helix (1979)

Alien Cargo (1984)

Godbody (1986)

A Touch of Sturgeon (1987)

The [Widget], the [Wadget], and Boff


Star Trek, The Joy Machine (with James Gunn) (1996)


The Ultimate Egoist (1994)

Microcosmic God (1995)


Thunder and Roses (1997)

The Perfect Host (1998)

Baby Is Three (1999)

A Saucer of Loneliness (2000)

Bright Segment (2002)

And Now the News …

The Man Who Lost the Sea (2005)

The Nail and the Oracle (2007)

Slow Sculpture (2009)

Case and the Dreamer (2010)


By David G. Hartwell

I became a dedicated reader and collector of science fiction and fantasy, and supernatural horror fiction, in the 1950s. At the end of the decade in 1959 I went to college and won a book collection prize there, with only a hundred hardcovers. Among the ornaments of that collection were the Sturgeon books, including first editions of
Without Sorcery
, his first book, and
More Than Human
, his most ambitious novel. Part of winning the prize involved explaining something of the significance of the books.

Four decades later, I do not recall what I wrote then, but I do know that I had been introduced to Sturgeon's short fiction in the sixth grade and looked forward to everything by him from then on. And still vivid in my memory is the Saturday afternoon in late 1953 or early 1954 when I walked into a news store in Lock Haven, Pennsylvania, where I had bought a few SF magazines before, and was pointed to the paperback rack by the proprietor. There I found and bought my first two SF paperbacks, Sturgeon's
More than Human
and Arthur C. Clarke's
Childhood's End
. That was the first year I bought and owned books, and these were treasures. I read them with intense concentration and delight. Nearly ten years later, after studying William Faulkner's novels, I re-read
More Than Human
and liked it and admired it even more.

Somehow very early in my reading I came to think of Sturgeon as the best writer of science fiction, fantasy, and horror. I would read anything he published, follow him beyond my normal comfort zones because of the rewards of reading his stories, not something I would do for many writers (such was my loyalty to SF at the time). I also recall my delight when he became a book reviewer for
Venture SF
the late 50s and published his famous column explaining Sturgeon's Law for the general readership; it had first been revealed in a 1953 Philcon speech later reprinted in a fanzine. He was one of Ray Bradbury's mentors (and Bradbury was at his peak then, publishing knockout stories and books). He was admired by Damon Knight, my favorite reviewer. Other writers and editors mentioned him in reverent tones in print. I thought he was a great writer. I still do.

As the years passed, I began to attend SF conventions, read fanzines, and hear gossip about Sturgeon, mainly about his writing blocks, his nudism, and his love life. He was famous for all three. I finally met him for the first time in 1972 at the Clarion writing workshop in East Lansing, Michigan, where he borrowed $200.00 through me to make a payment that was pressing. Fred Pohl laughed at me the next week and said I would never get it back, but it was repaid shortly thereafter. I was so pleased that I would gladly have given up the money to know Sturgeon. At Clarion I was privileged to listen to his Monday morning lecture to the writing students, which was full of sophisticated and useful advice and ideas, so full that I could tell that the students were not getting much from it. But I still remember a lot of it and use it in my own teaching. There exist tapes of Sturgeon teaching a writer's workshop late in his life that may someday become commercially available. And I arranged to interview Sturgeon at the 1972 World SF Convention in Los Angeles a month or so later for
magazine, in which I then had a science fiction column. It's a long interview filled with lots of Sturgeon's personal ideas and perceptions of books, stories about his life and friends, interesting stuff that I recommend to all interested parties.

For instance:

I skipped two and a half years of my primary schooling. I left the fifth grade and took eight weeks in summer school and went to high school at not quite twelve years old.… And I was very underweight and undersized and a natural target for everyone around me. And I was pretty well brutalized by that whole thing. We didn't have school buses in those days and
we lived three miles away and we used to have these six miles to walk every day through all kinds of neighborhoods. I had to figure out different ways to go each day, because kids would lay for me on the way. I had curly golden hair and I was very thin and kind of whey-faced and pretty. And I was just an absolute target. When I was in high school I discovered apparatus gymnastics, and that became my total preoccupation. In a year and a half or so I gained four inches and sixty pounds, and I became captain and manager of my gym team, which is literally a transfiguration. I was totally born again. And the very kids that used to bully me used to follow me around and carry my books and it was a really incredible difference.

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