Tuesday 16 August 2011


A couple of weeks ago, perhaps triggered by the new Conan movie publicity, I remembered having read a really good short story, not a classic, but something from the early pulp era that was just good entertainment. I wanted to re-read it, but I had no idea of the title, author or even the name of the characters, just that the setting had something to do with Atlantis and the main character's wife was from somewhere else, like maybe Mu or Lemuria. Anyway, I read a lot of interesting Wikipedia pages about fantasy authors, but nothing that led to this particular story. So I gave up, having no further clues to investigate.

Then the other day, I was looking over P's Michael Moorcock collection for the one with the pearl and the girl in the tent (that would be enough to figure out which book I'm looking for if Mr Moorcock hadn't written a bazillion books) when I noticed the words "Edited by Lin Carter" on Flashing Swords! 2 (exclamation point in the title, I wasn't that excited at the time). That's one of the interesting early fantasy authors I had read about in my short story search. Curious, I opened the book, and the first story was the one I had remembered so vaguely: L Sprage de Camp's The Rug and The Bull. I read it on the bus yesterday and it is as good as I remembered.

Perhaps it's my age, but I do find it marvellous how much information is available on the internet, and I'm also amazed at how challenging it is to find the exact information I'm after. Though I should add that I've not been at my sharpest for a while. I'm not sure if that's due to work related stress, the weather, too much/little tea, or what; but as I'm not at my sharpest, it's probably not the best time to try to figure it out. However, after the triumph of finding the story, I'm hoping things will perk up again, and maybe I'll feel up to finishing that embroidery I put down almost two months ago.