Frederik Pohl

Frederik Pohl

Michael R. Page

Print publication date: 2017

ISBN: 9780252039652

Publisher: University of Illinois Press

Abstract

One of science fiction's undisputed grandmasters, Frederik Pohl built an astonishing career that spanned more than seven decades. In publishing novels, short stories, and essays, Pohl won millions of readers and seemingly as many awards while leaving a lasting mark on the genre. This book traces Pohl's extraordinary journey from discovering books as a boy at the Brooklyn Public Library to publishing the novel All the Lives He Led at age 91. A first-of-its-kind study, the book delves into the iconic works of fiction like The Space Merchants, Jem, and the tales of the Gateway universe, as well as Pohl's creative alliances with the likes of C. M. Kornbluth, Arthur C. Clarke, and Isaac Asimov. But the book also examines Pohl's as-essential contributions in other areas. He represented many of the major science fiction writers as a literary agent in the 1940s and 1950s. He helped professionalize the field by midwifing science fiction publishing at Ballantine and Ace Books. Finally, while working at Galaxy and If, he aided countless careers as, in Gardner Dozois' words, “quite probably the best SF magazine editor who ever lived.”