header by Jim Garrison

Here we go again! All you great readers have sent more Letters of Comment (no doubt because you want to see my loveliness once more!) so read on.

Right on, Shelby! Glad to see you extending your range by posting on efanzines. I’m going to mention this in the FANAC section of Surprising Stories.

Nice to see Allen Koszowski is still around. There’s unusual work put into that cover art.

Got a real kick out of your Space Opera story.


John Thiel

The Cap said that wonderful pic was an old one, John, pulled from our files.

Next we have a letter all the way from Germany. You gotta read it! Gerd's letter is a good story in itself!!!

And there's a short bio of Gerd in Wonderlust. Good lookin' guy!

Hey, lookee here! Gerd just sent a comment on our Special Issue. He's just the kind of reader we need. Thanxalot, Gerd!

This is a letter of comment on this special "Jim Garrison" issue:

"The Hive of the Flare Beasts" by Lee Tenibor is an interesting story about possible problems with our sun. In former times they thought there could be life on or in our sun. Now this seems impossible. But you never know, what kind of "life" (or of energy) exists there, maybe spreading out. Our sun has given us our life, and in about five billion years for sure will take it away again. Then what? We know the answer in SF: long generation voyages to the stars to another Earth. And well, is this the final reason why they are searching these days so much for an Earth B?

"Bonnie and Clyde in the Belt" by - who knows - oh yes, Shelby Vick. Well, first I see you are publishing a lot of your own stories in your magazines. And I tell you expressly, that's right! You (and me) we don't wait till someone comes telling us to act. We act on ourselves, and that's right! And, well, believe it or not, I like to read your stories. There is the right sense of good and evil in it (and in stories by other authors), and some humor. And the good guys always win. That's correct! Also in this story all goes well in the end. We note, as told in the story: to understand people is much more difficult than to understand the most sophisticated technical apparatus like your "gravbomb". Indeed, people are more than any technical device, and so their understanding is far more demanding.

"Curtain Call" by Bob Bolin is also well told. It's interesting to see the ideas which your authors present. What about actors playing on Jupiter and before it's audience of giants? Hm, maybe better not. Who knows which story would result then?

"Quick Trip" by Johann Kuester. Also well told. Here we too learn that people have "intuitions" and therefore they are superior to machines (here: robots). "It wasn't every day a robot falls in love with you". I don't think a machine (robot) will ever develop in a way to become a girl friend or real wife, like in the story. But the idea that the female robot "Marriam" sacrifices itself is good. And very well is the idea that he, Darin, tries to fix her at the end (when she partially is destroyed).

"The Western Rim" by Johann Kuester. Well, let me repeat it, a well told story. The space port is situated directly on the migration path of dinosaurs. Like on earth (in Germany) where streets cross natural paths and destroy natural life. But sometimes there are introduced bridges or tunnels for the wild life to cross. Funny, the leading man in the story rides a "big airbike". Well, as I told you, I am riding bike as well, every day for one hour. But, of course, I am using a normal ground bike. What do we gather from the story? They fight the creatures ("flying scary reptiles"). John saves Alice who recovers in the "city hospital". "I thanked God for the doctors, the machinery, the medicine." Alas, the most important point is missing: thank God for positive thinking and for Emile Coué! Anyway, this story is good reading, too.

Not to forget Jim Garrison whose pictures are somewhat comic-like which is okay, because in the past we read comics ourselves. By the way, Jim works far better than most of modern art. How comes? Because there is some meaning or contents in his pictures. In "modern" art it's different. For instance, in modern "art" they put a pot of paint on the stage and name it: "This is the famous pot of paint". And they declare it to be the best what modern art has created till today. And so they sell this unique pot of paint for thousands and hundreds thousands of Dollars because all of the "experts" agree on its quality. Is this art? No, that's nonsense, and in modern "art", there is so much nonsense, you hardly believe it.

In general, I want to pick out of "The Vibrating Ether" some letters which describe exactly what I think about your magazines.

Now there's a great idea, Gerd! Kinda like sites where people respond to earlier entries. I like it. Fact is, the Cap started us in that direction last issue, where new comments were put in as we got 'em.

First Lt. Luna: "We should expect at least one letter of comment from every reader, every issue." Well, I think, most important is that your magazines are free and open to every reader no matter if he writes letters or not. This, therefore, is very important:

a) Your magazines are free; when you have detected them you can pick out whatever you want. That's very good!

b) All of your magazines are present. Very good. I have read some and will read more.

c) Also important: no log-in ceremonies, no passwords, no nothing, just reading fun. That's right!

Walker Martin: "Both online magazines have plenty of pulp fiction told with wit and humor." Yes, exactly, with wit and humor!

Clif Jackson: "I always enjoy the writing on Planetary Stories." You are not the only one, Clif!

Bob Kennedy: "I appreciate the action and it is a relief not to get bogged down with laborious descriptions." Exactly! We want to read good entertainment and action; and in between the lines the one or other subtle idea; only this way an author brings his ideas over: first you must grip the reader, and later, when he thinks ít over: oh yes, there was something more in it!

Bruce Simon: "I have read some of the other stories in past issues. They are truly a pleasurable throwback to a time where good and evil were sharply defined as opposed to the murkiness we find in literature and life today." Exactly, so!

You are writing: "our only pay is appreciation and exposure". Well, money isn't everything. You are doing more than you think.

Kind regards,

First response to #34 came from Wade Gilbreath.

Hi, ShelVy I'm getting two or three notices.

LOL Well, you can't say we aren't letting ya know, Wade!
Seriously, we'll check our navigation logs and try to eliminate duplicates.

Pierre Comtois sent a comment:

Thanks for this, Vic! The story about the alien dating an earth girl sounds interesting...wish i'd thought of that plot! Are you still looking for stories? I might have one or two that haven't seen the light of day yet.

The author, Russ Bickerstaff, is a very talented new member of our staff, Pierre. The Cap will share your comment with him.
Then Bobby Nash sent this:


Concise and to the point, Bobby. Appreciate it.

Our German friend, Gerd Maximovic is really on the ball, guys! He already has a letter of comment on ish 34. Read on!

Planetary Stories 34.

Therein we find Matthew Senkowski: "Alien Bananas Cretures". Well narrated story, "classical" I would say. So, this is compliments, Matthew. But, beg your pardon, what about munching bananas thereafter? Do you think your readers dare eating them having read your story? What would happen when my next bananas are going haywire, developping their own rites in my mouth? Please, be kind enough, NOT to write such a story about apple trees. Why? You know the saying: "An apple a day keeps the doctor away!" So please do not hinder my eating apples. I need my daily apple for my health as well as I need Emile Coué and his great discovery.

Richard Logan: "A Pocket Full of Tricks". This is a hard boiled classical action story. We like to read it. In it you pose the question how to detect a spy? Well, in Science Fiction, like in the story, you send a message to his mind, and so you find out who he is because he will certainly show some reaction. But, is it true, is it only so in SF? May I inform you on the famous German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer. He, in his writings, tells us: when a stranger is standing in front of your door, guard your thoughts, because maybe he will read them. Look at Schopenhauer, he is no poor SF author, but a famous philosopher who writes this!

Shelby Vick: "Time After Time" (Part Two). Good fun this story, something to laugh about. Well, dear author, you know, now you are telling about the real problems voyaging through space. It is not suns bursting out. It is not aliens threatening you. Or things like these. Here we learn the real problem, space travelling creates. Rick Suddenly, the hero, lands on a planet, "suddenly" he learns he is married, a fact he didn't know before. Married to a wife, I guess. Well, you never know. But space and time curvature is tricky, so he must be married to a lot of women (without knowing it). And here begins the real problem. Of course, Rick Suddenly must have fathered a lot of children. And the women awaiting him, what do they demand? Maintenance, big sums of maintenance Rick "suddenly" will have to pay. So you easily see, space travel is far more expensive than even NASA thought.

Russ Bickerstaff: "A Date on Earth". Date with an alien out of the movies. Good atmosphere.

Jose Sanchez: "Star Wars Returns". Only pictures, but well done. We like this mixture. And we like the illustrations contributed by Tim Riley (in Shelby's story).

Martyn Osmundsen: "The Dust, Like Stars". They are attacking through a tunnel. Also interesting to see the danger lurking there.

There are short bios at the end of the stories. Well done, Shelby, we like to see this extra information, and good, you are recruiting new writers for your eMagazines.

Kind regards,

I just recovered from laughing at Gerd's comments when BOOM another letter!

I did read Pulp Spirit 24.

Looking around the stories and pictures you publish, there is always a tickle (an appeal) to it. There is Len Dobsons's "Old Father", a story wherein revenge is postponed. Clear, hard story telling, no modern artificial writing. And there is Mark Nassutti's "Murder on the Old Santa Fe Trail". Some sort of humor, well and strongly told (attractive illos as well). Discussion in the saloon good, like people are really talking. Also the bio is interesting where Mark explains he is not writing only for himself alone but as well for others who might judge his writing worth reading. A writer always writes for himself (hopefully doing his best) and for his public.

In Mark's story there is a hunt for "TJ", we learn, "TJ" is already dead. But indeed, there are creatures - in this story and maybe in reality - who knew it before. Because in the story there are mules and horses shying away from the dead "TJ" before the hero himself knows what happened.

There arises one question: wherefrom do animals know there is lying a corpse? Indeed, what Mark hints on can be true.

Dogs for instance "know" much more than men. So often times they, barking, sound alarm. Is this only so because they smell someone? There are verified stories, the dog's master comes home untimely, but the dog, already scratching at the door, knows it. Regarding the distance, this cannot be due to the sense of smell. But wherefrom knows the dog his far distant master - untimely - is coming? Mind reading? Soul reading? For sure, something like that.

One more example for animals' abilities. I'm living here at fifth floor, bright view over the roof of the next house towards the dome. Sometimes swarms of birds are gathering there. They - all together - fly up and down, left and right, thousands, ten thousands of birds, almost faultlessly, they make curves and turns, like in the ballet, like exercised on stage. Please, tell me: how can 10 000 birds fly like one body? How? So-called scientists "explain" this, they say, the birds touch their wings, and so they rise and turn, in an incredible way as swiftly as they can. Do you really believe they touch their wings? Or should we not better think, for such a compact body, there is contact soul to soul, making those birds turn and curve? Poor modern "scientists", who only believe in technique, being thus far away from nature, they do not even try to understand! Look at a swarm of birds, and tell me, how and why!

Okay, folks. It's nearing Thanksgiving. That's it for now! Keep 'em coming.

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