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Old, but never answered queries

(None currently)

different books in a slipcase

Hello, there is an publication with seven books in a slipcase Die andere Zukunft. 7 Bände. (PhB 368). (3-518-06579-3). € 5,95. All books have the same apparently wrong ISBN 3-518-06579-3. I own only two of these books and I don't now how to handle this [1][2]. Thanks for any help Henna 17:57, 14 December 2016 (UTC)

What do you mean when you say "wrong"? Does it belong to another book? If so, are you sure it was not also issued to those books (happens now and then) :) Anniemod 18:22, 14 December 2016 (UTC)
The ISBN was previously used for a novel by Hermann Hesse. This really does happen in a few cases: somebody at the publisher then must have lost the overview.
It does seem that the single volumes initially weren't for sale on their own, so this should be handled as an OMNIBUS. If you know the other titles included, you can import or enter them. Stonecreek 19:25, 14 December 2016 (UTC)
Thanks for your answers! I try to create such OMNIBUS and mark the ISBN with #? Thanks again Henna 20:21, 14 December 2016 (UTC)
Well, no. This seems to be a valid ISBN, it just was doubly used: a note on that would be fine! Stonecreek 20:42, 14 December 2016 (UTC)
I'm not sure, is this the correct way? Thanks Henna 15:51, 16 January 2017 (UTC)
Yes, fine for the double-used ISBN. I still would use the paperback (pb) designation for the format (and note that the volumes were likely published in a slipcase). Stonecreek 20:33, 20 January 2017 (UTC)


I see some printings of which state "a borzoi book published by alfred a. knopf inc" listed as knopf publisher, some knopf/sfbc; on the other hand, i see Borzoi / Alfred A. Knopf, Borzoi / Alfred A. Knopf / BCE, Borzoi / Alfred A. Knopf / BOMC, all listed as publishers via the search box, and this printing i'm looking at says "a borzoi book published by alfred a. knopf inc" on the copyright page, knopf everywhere else, and is listed as knopf/sfbc publisher so I imagine it could conceivably be considered Borzoi / Alfred A. Knopf / SFBC. So, I was wondering what the rules surrounding this issue might be? Thanks. gzuckier 18:56, 30 December 2016 (UTC)

The general format is "Imprint / Publisher". So the text you quote should be represented as "Borzoi / Alfred A. Knopf". The help identifies a special case for the Science Fiction Book Club, using the format "Publisher / SFBC". In practice, that is interpreted to mean "publisher-string / SFBC" or, in other words, "Imprint / Publisher / SFBC". So if you had a book with that same text you quoted, but it was an Science Fiction Book Club edition, that should be represented as "Borzoi / Alfred A. Knopf / SFBC". There are other book clubs besides the Science Fiction Book Club. Not stated in the help, but de facto standard, is to represent those using the same format as used for the SFBC. BOMC is Book-of-the-Month Club -- another well-known book club. BCE is "book club edition". Someone who knows more than I do would have to tell you if that's a specific book club or if it's just any non-SFBC, non-BOMC book saying "book club edition" and/or otherwise obviously not being the trade edition. --MartyD 12:02, 2 January 2017 (UTC)
thanksgzuckier 03:21, 4 January 2017 (UTC)

SF? again

How about this item? thanks gzuckier 07:19, 2 January 2017 (UTC)

No (again). Hauck 08:29, 2 January 2017 (UTC)
Though it is SF. It's just a craft book, though, and those generally aren't included (as Hauck says). ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 02:09, 15 February 2017 (UTC)
We don't include craft books, puzzle books, crosswords, mazes, paper dolls, or joke books. If it doesn't have an actual story (for fiction) or a real essay about fiction (for non-fiction), we don't include it. The only exception to that simple rule that I can think of are the art books. Chavey 06:11, 15 February 2017 (UTC)
Exactly. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 20:26, 15 February 2017 (UTC)
I do disagree and I am aware of several other examples of cut out and craft books that are already in the database. These sorts of books clearly fall under the second item for what is included in the ROA which simply requires that they be "works about speculative fiction". There is no exclusion for craft books, nor do I feel there should be. If someone is interested enough to enter such books, there is probably someone else who would find the bibliographic data of use. A reason for excluding such works escapes me. --Ron ~ RtraceTalk 00:34, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
I'd be fine with including them, but I've been told in the past they weren't allowed. I agree with you that they are "works about speculative fiction". I can see not including crossword books and mazes. Paper dolls could be considered art books, IMHO. Joke books...if all of the jokes were about speculative fiction, then I could see including them (say, a Star Trek joke book). ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 01:24, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
Should this be moved to Rules and Standards? Chavey 02:55, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
If craft books are eligible, then the exclusion of the Graphic novels becomes bizarre. A Science fiction or horror Graphic novel is much closer to Speculative Fiction than an Origami book about Star Wars. And yet, the first is excluded but we are arguing that there is no reason not to include the latter. It can be valuable for someone, I agree, but so can movies related to our authors and books, graphic novels, music and so on. Should we start discussing including them all? Annie 03:02, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
Yes, that's a fine line we have to draw here: not only graphic novels, but in consequence the whole speculative comic output would have to be 'in'. Stonecreek 04:42, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
I think we could exclude individual comic issues and only accept those released as graphic novels. Pretty much everything here is a book of some sort, so that wouldn't be a bad place to draw the line. I agree with Chavey that it might be good to move this over to R&S to discuss. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 08:39, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
Sorry to disagree, but that's a kind of (self-)deception. Since the boundaries between graphic novels and comics are fuzzy (comics are reissued as graphic novels and vice versa), this will lead to the eventual inclusion of all genre comics as history in other areas (graphics, nonfiction) shows. Stonecreek 09:11, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
Not to mention translations, later compilations (virtually any single issue published now seems to be making its way into a TPB sooner or late), variants and what's not. If we open the door, we may try to keep it just cracked but that won't last long. Annie 17:42, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
My position didn't change: No comics, no graphic novels, no mangas, no "bandes dessinées", no "fumetti", etc... Note also that I found the exception made for Gaiman utterly abusive and completely misleading for our new contributors as is the "Graphic" flag that shouldn't even exist if we simply follow our present rules. Hauck 19:23, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
I couldn't have said it better (especially since I don't know some of those fancy French and Italian words...). --MartyD 11:24, 17 February 2017 (UTC)

(unindent) A little bit of background re: graphic novels. The question was extensively debated ca. 2006-2008 when ISFDB 2.0 was opened for editing. Some editors felt strongly about including award-winning works of SF even if they were graphic in nature. The emphasis on "award-winning" may seem strange in 2017 since we cover so much more than award-winning works, but it was what it was. Perhaps it was due to the fact that the ISFDB project originally started by cataloging SF awards and some of that still lingered on 10 years ago.

Be that as it may, the rest of us went along with the proposed "selective inclusion" of graphic novels even though some editors were uncomfortable with the idea of using awards as an inclusion criterion. I was one of the "uncomfortable" ones, but, once the decision had been made, I thought that it was important to distinguish graphic novels from regular titles. If we were going to list some graphic novels, the least we could do was clearly indicate that they were not like the rest of the works that we cataloged. Hence the eventual addition of the "Graphic" flag.

Well, it's been about 10 years since the original discussion and a couple of things have changed. First, some of the editors who were in favor of the selective inclusion of award-winning graphic novels are no longer around, so perhaps the consensus has changed. Second, graphic novels have evolved and, in many cases, have become closely related to regular novels. In 2006, Neil Gaiman's use of graphic novels and regular stories set in the same universe was still uncommon. In 2017 many popular prose series have graphic off-shoots, e.g. Mercy Thompson and The Dresden Files have graphic versions. Should this be reflected in our rules?

I don't know the answer to these questions, but I agree with Darrah that a Rules and Standards discussion may be warranted. We may not be able to reach consensus, at least not right away, but we would likely compile a more comprehensive list of arguments "pro et contra" as of 2017. Ahasuerus 16:12, 17 February 2017 (UTC)

So can we move/restart the discussion in the other board? Annie 17:31, 17 February 2017 (UTC)

Hors-série magazine issue

How do you add an issue of a magazine to the editor series when it's a hors-série, not one of the regular dated issues? Besides their weekly issues, this year Strange Horizons also had a Fund Drive Special -- they give the date as "published between 14 September and 14 October 2016". --Vasha 21:28, 6 January 2017 (UTC)

The same way you do it with the dated ones, just the date will be 2016-00-00 - it will simply show up in a separate column called "unknown" or something like that in the table :) Annie 23:02, 6 January 2017 (UTC)


Numerous of the covers of this title say "by Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III. Translated from the Old Norse by Cressida Cowell." on the cover and the copyright page. Does that merit an alternate name variant? thanks. gzuckier 06:39, 7 January 2017 (UTC)

Only if it's also stated on the title page: that's our reference. Stonecreek 09:58, 7 January 2017 (UTC)
having gone back and looked, that is in fact what it says. so varianting i shall go. thanks. gzuckier 04:34, 14 January 2017 (UTC)


This pub says "Map by G D S/Jeffrey L. Ward" on the copyright page, and the signature on the map says G D S/Jeffrey L. Ward. does anybody know who or what G D S is? thanks.

googling gds and maps i get a couple of possibilities,
gzuckier 07:44, 7 January 2017 (UTC)

If you really think one part of the map originated from 'geologicdata', we still would only credit Ward. Stonecreek 12:48, 8 January 2017 (UTC)
i can't find anything other than those 2, so i guess i'll back g d s out. thanks. gzuckier 18:53, 8 January 2017 (UTC)

cover artist confusion

The pubs and are showing the same cover but 2 different artists. I have a transient copy with the same cover, and the artist doesn't seem to be identified anywhere in the book. I was going to just leave cover artist blank for this pub, but should we do something about the conflicting pubs? thanks. gzuckier 21:35, 7 January 2017 (UTC)

I've deleted the image for the Lee cover (data seem to come from Locus with usually gives the artist). There are likely two successive covers. Hauck 09:30, 8 January 2017 (UTC)

a text within a text

How should I handle this? In Strange Horizons, Niall Harrison reprints Nalo Hopkinson's announcement of the Lemonade Award. It is mostly her text with her name signed at the bottom; Harrison provides a two-sentence introduction. And yet, at the top of the article and in the TOC, it is his name alone that appears. Now, I have created a record with the title "Announcement: The Lemonade Award" and author Niall Harrison; but I can't shake the feeling that there should be some sort of record that names Hopkinson as author too. --Vasha 15:18, 8 January 2017 (UTC)

Although it's very short, I would handle Harrison's part only as the introduction it is and list the Hopkinson essay separately (I'd say as by 'uncredited'): if to enter it under the same title or with the [ ... ] format that some of use, would be a choice of taste (just my two pennies of thought). Stonecreek 18:47, 8 January 2017 (UTC)
I was thinking of keeping the record with Harrison's name and adding a note that it's an intro; and then creating another record -- "[Announcement: The Lemonade Award]" by Nalo Hopkinson, because her name is signed at the bottom; brackets because her part of the article doesn't have a title. --Vasha 19:02, 8 January 2017 (UTC)
It'd be rather more correct to use the beginning of the text [What are we doing to foster joy ...]. Stonecreek 04:37, 9 January 2017 (UTC)

cover artist again

so if i'm interpreting this right,
"Cover Design by David Shoemaker
Cover Photographs:
Hands/Face: Marion Clendenen;
Highway: Radius Images"
would have cover artists Marion Clendenen and Radius Images, right? thanks. gzuckier 02:48, 9 January 2017 (UTC)

Yeah! Stonecreek 04:36, 9 January 2017 (UTC)
When there appears to be sufficient artistic effort involved in a montage cover, i.e. when the designer who put things together seems to have as much "artistic" involvement in the cover as the photographers, you may optionally include the cover designer as one of the "authors" of the cover. We really don't want to do that when the designer appears to have only been responsible for placing text (and little else) over someone's art, but when the cover art has really been "created" by the cover designer from pieces that would not represent the book individually, then the cover designer can be assigned some of the artistic credit. Chavey 04:54, 10 January 2017 (UTC)
uh huh. thanks. gzuckier 04:33, 14 January 2017 (UTC)

Help with cover art question?

I recently uploaded a picture(CRRPKRZXVP2007.jpg) using the "upload cover scan" button associated with the book I wanted to add the picture to. It didn't get placed in the reference, so I think I'm supposed to edit the publication info to include the picture. Well and good, but the edit page asks for a url to the cover and I don't know what to put. I tried variations on bracket-bracket-Image:CRRPKRZXVP2007.jpg-bracket-bracket and the editor form demands an http tag, so apparently that won't work. (insert "[" for first two "bracket" and "]" for the second two, removing "-", thus creating standard wiki markup)

There are quite a few more books that I hope to be adding to the database, many of which will need pictures (only some of them can be gotten from fantlab or fantascienza or amazon, so I will be uploading a fair number of them), so I'm hoping that rather than fix it for me, someone will tell me what I'm doing wrong, so I can do the job right from now on.

Could someone tell me what the correct sequence of actions is for adding a new book that needs a cover to be uploaded? Thanks, KarenHunt 22:53, 12 January 2017 (UTC)

You have the sequence correctly. All that is left is to right click on the image after you uploaded it and grab the URL for the image for it. You do not use Wiki syntax or brackets -- just the address as the browser sees it. For you picture, it is CRRPKRZXVP2007.jpg (did you mean to have the white borders around it?). Just right click on the picture to see the exact address (or you can do it directly from the uploaded page where I took it from) See here for a longer explanation. Annie 23:00, 12 January 2017 (UTC)
Thanks, I'll try that out on the next books I add! KarenHunt 23:43, 12 January 2017 (UTC)
I will probably try to replace the picture with one that lacks the borders. I have one, so it's just a matter of redoing the upload and add.... KarenHunt 23:48, 12 January 2017 (UTC)
I think what you want to do (and others please correct me if I'm wrong) is click on the "ISFDB" link under the existing image where it says "Cover art supplied by ISFDB"; then at the bottom of the page it links to, click on the "Upload a new version of this file" link. Then on that page, which should have have the 'destination filename' already filled in, click the UPLOAD FILE button. Doug / Vornoff 08:26, 14 January 2017 (UTC)

Another more complex cover art question (two, really)

I'm putting up some Hebrew translations into the Lois McMaster Bujold collection, and I'm finding rather odd things about the cover art. For example, the cover artist was listed as Anat Vardimon for their version of Shards of Honor, but I've determined that the underlying art matches a much older book (Anya Seaton's _Avalon_ ISBN 0449017818 from 1965). I've seen reuse of cover art and I assume that is being done here, but there are certainly additions to the picture and I'm guessing that was what was added by Anat Vardimon. I don't know who did the original picture. Also, should I have put Anat Vardimon's name in using Hebrew characters?

I'm seeing something similar with another book - the version of Barrayar appears to be something of a montage. The background is from the upper left corner of The Fall of Rebel Angels by Frans Floris the Elder ( How do I indicate this sort of thing? KarenHunt 16:35, 16 January 2017 (UTC) EDIT: I mean upper right corner, reflected, not upper left. KarenHunt 18:53, 16 January 2017 (UTC)

IMHO, enter as credited, such "borrowings" can go in the notes, it's sometimes even more visible, compare this copy to the original (and note the disappearance of the "PE"). Hauck 19:10, 16 January 2017 (UTC)
Indeed. There's a Russian Ethan of Athos where the cover is a reflection of C J Cherryh's Rimrunners cover ( I've been wondering how I'll put that one up. (I've got the artist already, but I don't yet know how to variant an artist picture. I assume reflections of pictures still count as the same picture?) KarenHunt 19:48, 16 January 2017 (UTC)
Yes, reflections, cropping, minor color changes, and other similar image editing are still considered the same picture. -- JLaTondre (talk) 22:08, 16 January 2017 (UTC)
Karen, what I would do to variant the cover art picture is 1) In your case, the cover art already exists so find the already existing ISFDB Title Record # in the upper right corner of the COVERART page of the cover you want to variant to and copy it. 2) Go to the publication page of the pub whose cover you want to make a variant. 3) To the right of the image where it says "Cover: ArtistName" click on the word/link "Cover", which takes you to the COVERART title page. Then 4) In the left column click on "Make This Title a Variant Title or Pseudonymous Work", which takes you to the "Make Variant Title" page. Enter/paste the copied record # where it says Parent # (under Option 1) and click on the "Link to Existing Parent" button. You can also leave notes for anything unusual for that cover (as was noted above) in the notes section of the cover title record and/or publication record. Hope this helps. Doug/ Vornoff 07:39, 17 January 2017 (UTC)
Sorry, but as I understand there are new elements in the art, so this wouldn't be correct. It's in fact a new piece of art. As we aren't as stringent in crediting pieces of art, you still might to chose to credit the initial artist as well and put a note in the publication and/or the art's title entry on the original credit and the original piece of art. Stonecreek 07:49, 17 January 2017 (UTC)
I think the procedure is correct for a cover that would be appropriate, though, such as identical covers with different titles. My goal was to answer Karen's query on how to variant a cover. If I've misinterpreted something, Christian, please advise. Thanks / Doug Vornoff 08:11, 17 January 2017 (UTC)
You're right: it'd be correct for the same art. As new art this item should have it's own title entry. Stonecreek 09:03, 17 January 2017 (UTC)
I'm going to take this as: For the two oddball Hebrew covers (one of which contains a chunk of a 16th century artwork while the other probably has some old artist's work as its background as well but not one that I know the source of, just put the relevant info in my notes. For the Russian one that's a simple reflection of another cover (with new words on top), if it doesn't have changes other than the reflection, then call it a variant of the Rimrunners cover; otherwise cite the artist and leave it as a separate work. If this is not what's intended, let me know? KarenHunt 22:04, 17 January 2017 (UTC)
Yes, if it is a 'new' artwork, it should remain its own record. Notes can be added to the title record if there is re-use. If it is minor editing (mirroring, cropping, etc.), it would be considered the same artwork and merged (if title and publication language are the same) or varianted (if title or publication language are not the same) with existing records. -- JLaTondre (talk) 23:37, 17 January 2017 (UTC)

Publisher duplication question

I believe the Romanian publisher Editură Nemira is present twice in the database - the other entry is Editura Nemira (without the micron over the a). There are other Romanian publishers with names that begin either way - should this be standardized to one choice or another? I'm not sure how one goes about dealing with these issues... KarenHunt 22:31, 18 January 2017 (UTC)

We go with what the publisher actually uses (Editură Nemira). When you find a pair of those, post in the "Moderator noticeboard" so a moderator can merge them :) Alternatively if the minority name is only in a handful of non-verified publicaitons, just go and edit it there.
PS: If you use the "+" sign instead of "Edit" when posting new queries in the boards, it will create the notification with the name of the topic :) Plus you do not need to remember how to format a title :) Annie 22:46, 18 January 2017 (UTC)
I see! I shall remember the easier way of adding topics. I suppose I shall consider this particular issue to have been posted well enough, but that future ones should go to the noticeboard. KarenHunt 23:14, 18 January 2017 (UTC)
Either someone fixed it or I cannot find "Editura Nemira" by the way :) Annie 23:25, 18 January 2017 (UTC)
Well, not precisely on list of publishers:

KarenHunt 23:29, 18 January 2017 (UTC)

It is a wiki page for the image - ping the editor that did it and either ask them to fix it or if they mind if you do if it really bugs you. But the DB is clean from this issue. :) Annie 23:34, 18 January 2017 (UTC)
It's not that big a deal to me. I'll figure it's good, then. KarenHunt 01:30, 19 January 2017 (UTC)

Can't change cover artist?

I can't change this cover artist it's grayed out. ??? That's not the artist of this edition. thanks. gzuckier 03:27, 19 January 2017 (UTC)

The cover art record is contained in multiple publications. You will need to remove it from the publication (use the "Remove Titles From This Pub" link on the publication screen) and add a new cover art record with the correct artist for that publication. -- JLaTondre (talk) 03:32, 19 January 2017 (UTC)
aha, thanks. gzuckier 14:47, 19 January 2017 (UTC)

Should I merge two Korean versions of The Warrior's Apprentice?

I made two records TWA 2013 and TWA 2007 for separate translations with different titles for separate Korean translations Lois McMaster Bujold's book The Warrior's Apprentice. On the other hand, I merged their two versions of The Vor Game, so they show up as two publications of the same book. Mostly I made the different choices because the ones for The Vor Game had the same title, while the ones for The Warrior's Apprentice had different titles.

Should they be merged instead? KarenHunt 16:38, 22 January 2017 (UTC)

No, as they have different titles, they should remain separate. If the title and the translator are the same, they would be merged. If the title is the same but the translator is different, they would also remain separate variants. -- JLaTondre (talk) 17:20, 22 January 2017 (UTC)
One more note on multiple translations: Keeping the variants separate even when they have the same title when they have different translators will be helpful when Translators support is added downstream. If these are now merged, they will need unmerging later to add a translator to the record. :) Annie 03:50, 23 January 2017 (UTC)

Number line again

I have a book with this number line 40/00/36/9. I know thats the ninth printing, but the year? Thanks for any help Henna 14:57, 23 January 2017 (UTC)

Non-Latin titles with Latin author names

The three Lois McMaster Bujold titles in this report are flagged due to parent Greek titles using her English name. The variants are the Greek titles using a Greek version of her name. The chapbooks were not published in English, so there's no natural English title + English name record to which to link the Greek + Greek combination. What do we do about this? Ignore the reported issues? Make the current Greek + English combination into English + English? Something else? Thanks. --MartyD 11:24, 24 January 2017 (UTC)

See my answer on Dirk's page (two to ignore, one to variant to the existing chapbook in english). Hauck 11:28, 24 January 2017 (UTC)
That's right. It's the same as any other title which has appeared "only as by" a pseudonym. Original omnibuses, collections and anthologies which collect translations are a common offender -- see, e.g., the Omnibus section of Philip José Farmer's Summary page. Ahasuerus 12:47, 24 January 2017 (UTC)

How to link review without publication

The latest Fantastic Stories of the Imagination contains a review of a genre story that was published in The Forge Literary Magazine; I think this magazine can't be indexed here because it's a non-genre webzine, am I right? If so, is there still a way I can create a title record to link the review to? --Vasha 22:06, 28 January 2017 (UTC)

You convert the review to an essay. It is added as a review if it is for something that is eligible in the db; anything else (non-genre that is not from the above threshold authors, movies and so on) is entered as an essay (with a name such as "Review of "something")Annie 22:32, 28 January 2017 (UTC)
But the story is eligible in the DB, it just hasn't appeared in an eligible publication. --Vasha 22:52, 28 January 2017 (UTC)
Ah, then you add the story in the same way we are adding this kind of stories - look at the Nature magazine for an example. You add the magazine and just the fiction content. However - if the magazine is not distributed as a e-book in some form and is only online, the story is not eligible under the current rules even when it is clearly genre(I do not like that rule but it is what it is for now). Annie 22:56, 28 January 2017 (UTC)
OK, got it. Unfortunately, if this story later appears in a collection or something, no one's ever going to realize that there was a review and go back and change the "essay" to a linked review. --Vasha 23:29, 28 January 2017 (UTC)
We generally want reviews linked to title records if the reviewed item is eligible for inclusion in its own right. Others may differ with this suggestion, but: In a situation like this, I would create the short fiction title record, link the review to it, and include a note in the title notes that it was only published in the online-only, non-genre webzine (and you can even provide the link as the web page). If you wanted to go further, you could raise a discussion of whether such a combination (genre title in an ineligible publication reviewed in a genre publication) should be sufficient to allow the indexing of that ineligible publication. I think that would be a logical extension of what we would do if the work had received an award. --MartyD 12:30, 29 January 2017 (UTC)
I'm completely against such "bricolage" (a french expression that may be translated as "makeshift job"). I know that some moderators played this game before, but for me, if the text is outside our scope (by our present rules), it's simply not to be included in the db. How can we stay coherent otherwise? Hauck 14:46, 29 January 2017 (UTC)
How about going halfway with Marty's suggestion -- create a title record with a note about the publication but don't index the magazine. There are other title records without publications, and this one won't even be sitting idle, it'll be holding the link to the review. --Vasha 19:14, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
Still strongly opposed. There are enough complaints about our multiple undocumented and discretionary exceptions to add anotrher one. Hauck 08:17, 1 February 2017 (UTC)

Sig Image Data template bug

It appears that the Artist= field of the Sig Image Data template isn't handling a name with an apostrophe correctly, as clicking on the link tries to convert the apostrophe to its ASCII number equivalent. thanks. gzuckier 23:30, 29 January 2017 (UTC)

I can fix problems with our core software, but I am afraid I don't know as much about our Wiki software as I'd like to. It may be a bug inherent in the version of the Wiki software that we use or it may be something that we can fix at the template level. Do we have any Wiki experts active at the moment? Ahasuerus 00:24, 30 January 2017 (UTC)
The version of the wiki software is limited in what it has for template processing. There is not a direct way to fix the linking issue (that I've found at least, I've tried with other templates). I can try adding another optional parameter that will take the artists id number and use that. -- JLaTondre (talk) 00:57, 30 January 2017 (UTC)
I added a ArtistId= optional parameter that if present will cause the artist's summary page to be linked via their record number vs. their name. It requires specifying an additional parameter, but avoids the breakage. Worked for my testing, but if anyone sees an issue please let me know. -- JLaTondre (talk) 01:19, 30 January 2017 (UTC)
I see I forgot to include the url: Anyway, i changed the artist=Pino Dell'Orco to ArtistId=233104 but it gives me artist=unknown and no link. Are you sure you did the Sig Image Data template? Thanks. gzuckier 04:35, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
It requires both the Artist= and the ArtistId= fields as the name should still be displayed. I updated the documentation to make that explicit. I also updated that signature page as an example. -- JLaTondre (talk) 19:25, 31 January 2017 (UTC)

Magazine "special publication"

In January 2016 the magazine Not One of Us put out what they call a "special publication" -- you can see the website and the cover. Visually, it greatly resembles their regular issues. Do you think this is an (unnumbered) issue or an anthology? --Vasha 03:09, 31 January 2017 (UTC)

It's an extra issue - so I would add it as such (like the special issue of Strange Horizons last year for example). They are planning another one this year as well - I wonder if they are not switching to named issues. Annie 21:34, 31 January 2017 (UTC)

Editor for Book Smugglers' Quarterly Almanac

The credit for The Book Smugglers' Quarterly Almanac (a new periodical, two issues so far) is given as "selected and edited by The Book Smugglers". Should I put "The Book Smugglers" in the editor space, or uncredited, or what? --Vasha 20:43, 31 January 2017 (UTC)

If they credit "The Book Smugglers", that's what goes in the field. One day when it is clear who was behind the name, it even can get aliased. Annie 21:32, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
I found it -- the copyright page says "edited by Ana Grilo and Thea James" and that overrides what they said on the website. But the editorial is signed "The Book Smugglers" so that's what I'll put as the author for that. --Vasha 23:39, 31 January 2017 (UTC)
Yep. If you (or someone else) can find a proof that they are one and the same, you can even alias at some point:) But not just based on an assumption... Annie 00:32, 1 February 2017 (UTC)

Suspected Duplicate Printing Record

Looks to me like both and are referring to the same printing. ?? (The correct number of pages is 625+[3]) Thanks. gzuckier 04:19, 8 February 2017 (UTC)

Seems you're right. I'd be inclined to delete your transient verified, though (because it seems to have appeared later in the db). Would you like to transfer your verification to the other volume? Stonecreek 07:10, 8 February 2017 (UTC)
ok, will do gzuckier 03:15, 9 February 2017 (UTC)

Author credit for letters columns

In a magazine, I've included a letters column as an essay type with the editor as author (he replies to the letters); I assume we don't put each letter writer as an additional author (nothing or nobody notable involved) right? thanks. gzuckier 03:20, 12 February 2017 (UTC)

I came across the same problem recently. Isaac Asimov replied to the letters in his magazines, and I found three different ways how this is handled:
I'm not sure which of these practices is best, but I think this should be handled consistently. Darkday 14:27, 13 February 2017 (UTC)
I do credit the editor of the letter column (IMHO correct as he/she usually selects & edits the letters and also comments on them). I don't credit each and every writer of letters, only those that are featured in ISFDB as authors, editors or artists in their own right).
Crediting 'The Readers' was common practice, but as we try to capture only natural persons (occasionally represented by their pseudonym), these should better replaced by 'various'. Stonecreek 16:01, 13 February 2017 (UTC)
For Science Fiction Chronicles, we dropped the column and only included the letters as appropriate. In discussions about back-filling the column, I ran across "The Readers" and liked how they displayed when using Series. It makes it almost useful, as opposed to various. No decision or action yet. Doug H 22:06, 13 February 2017 (UTC)
How do we determine which letter writers are important? What happens when we have the same person having letters in 30+ issues but not having an entry because we did not deem him important? I can see why the DB has gone the way it is but I think that we need to be consistent - we either credit all authors or none at all (even ours)... Just thinking aloud here :) Annie 23:30, 13 February 2017 (UTC)
I enter a bunch of fanzines. I assume that every letter to the editor is by someone who's famous in some local sense, probably someone who wrote their own fanzine (which will get entered eventually), and hence will eventually be in our DB. So I enter them all. Chavey 07:47, 14 February 2017 (UTC)
Ditto. I enter all correspondents with their own letters; I don't put a value judgement on how recognisable their name is or is not. What I don't enter is anyone in the WAHF column, which in one fanzine I've indexed has been known to run to pages. :-\ PeteYoung 08:56, 14 February 2017 (UTC)
I do not enter individual letters but when applicable enter a general lettercol ESSAY (and credit it to The Readers).Hauck 09:25, 14 February 2017 (UTC)
At one point I also was tempted to enter all 'letterers' but refrained from the idea, as the recent use of email adresses obscures the identities and leads IMHO to a somewhat chaotic and meaningless bulk of authors that may or may be not identical to known (semi-prominent) contributors. This, for me, is the background of not adding all letters.
Doug (& Hervé), I don't see how 'The Readers' is much different from 'various.
That said, I'd nevertheless add letters that have something substantial to say (for example on creators of speculative fiction), and aren't written by a known author. Christian Stonecreek 10:54, 14 February 2017 (UTC)
I use "The Readers" because it was there and IMHO it is a bit more precise than various as it qualifies the persons. Hauck 13:16, 14 February 2017 (UTC)
So we have the usual case of "entering editor decision" case about that... :) Annie 15:48, 14 February 2017 (UTC)
I am entering all letter writers who have published at least one essay or story entered into ISFDB. In the case of lesser known authors, this may be the only link to their identity, as most letters include the sender's address. If you're worried about clutter, it's too late. I did a search on "letters" and quit counting when I got close to 20 000. My guess is the total is very close to 30 000.--Rkihara 21:47, 14 February 2017 (UTC)
The other way around - I am worried about having prolific letter authors that we are missing because noone had enough issues of the magazines to recognize the name multiple times. Or magazines in the same run that are inconsistently entered. If we are going to record all internal illustrations, letters do not bother me at all. Annie 22:00, 14 February 2017 (UTC)
For the most part, I'm not entering the writers who have not published anything other than letters into the ISFB, but I am keeping track of them and could go back and enter them. What would you suggest? I wouldn't want to enter one-off letter writers. Maybe four or more published letters, or winning a letterhack award?--Rkihara 22:59, 14 February 2017 (UTC)
I do not know... I had been mostly thinking aloud so far :) Maybe start a community page in the wiki where single letters authors are noted so if I find the same somewhere, I can consult, see that we already have 3 non-entered and that would mean they are eligible now to be included? Because you have notes but what if the other 2 letters are in magazines you do not see but I do.(and then the German guys find a 5th one). :) I need to think a bit more on that Annie 23:56, 14 February 2017 (UTC)


Is there a policy about excerpts of Novels? Should they be linked to their related Series or left as Short Fiction? I've seen both occurrences so I am not sure what is 'right'.--AndyjMo 11:40, 14 February 2017 (UTC)

Well, if a title series exists, they should be joining the party. If not, they are better left alone as stand-alone shortfiction. Stonecreek 13:19, 14 February 2017 (UTC)
My memory is that the last time we discussed this in any detail, we came to the notorious "no conclusion", leaving it up to the editors to decide. I tend to view them like advertisements, hence I do not include them in the contents, but I do mention them in the publication notes. Chavey 06:01, 15 February 2017 (UTC)

Novels created by linked stories

We have Blackbird House entered as a novel (with a note that it is a "Collection/novel of 12 linked stories."). We also have the 12 stories already in the DB (as publication-less titles). It is officially considered a novel for the publishing world. How do we handle this?

  • Change it to a collection and import the content
  • Leave it as a novel but import the stories anyway
  • Something else?

Thanks for any opinions. Annie 22:50, 15 February 2017 (UTC)

Ugh, never mind. This is the same as "Foundation" - collection it is. Sorry, had a bit of a stupid moment here. Annie 22:52, 15 February 2017 (UTC)

How do you unvariant?

I have a reverse varianting (the variant needs to become the parent) but I cannot figure out how to revert them without recreating one of the titles again and then deleting the now orphan one. Help? Annie 00:27, 16 February 2017 (UTC)

I would start by breaking the variant relationship. As the "Make Variant Title" page says, "To BREAK an existing Variant link, enter 0." Once that has been approved, you can turn the ex-parent title into a variant of the ex-VT. Ahasuerus 01:44, 16 February 2017 (UTC)
Note to self: Read the pages you think you know. I was missing the "0" trick and did not even think of reading the instructions again. Thanks for pointing it out! Once I break the connection, I am back in known waters :) Annie 02:24, 16 February 2017 (UTC)

Missing Titles from The History of Science Fiction by Adam Roberts (2005)

Long ago, I have created a page called ISFDB:Missing_Titles_from_The_History_of_Science_Fiction_by_Adam_Roberts_(2005)

and slowly added all the titles listed there to ISFDB.

Now I have randomly checked page of

"Jean De La Pierre" 181767

and the page of his title

"Le Grand Empire de L'un et L'autre Monde" 1517791

where both deleted for some reason.

same hapened to many others e.g.

181764 Charles Renouvier

can someone help me understand why they were deleted? Qshadow 16:06, 17 February 2017 (UTC)

There are three editions of this book on file, one of them primary-verified. Perhaps the editors who worked on this title and its publication thought that individual sections were just chapters and didn't merit separate records of their own? Ahasuerus 18:47, 17 February 2017 (UTC)
Not me again! I don't understand clearly where the problem lies. Is it a problem of disappearance of authors and their work in the db or a problem with the content of the book? Hauck 19:01, 17 February 2017 (UTC)
I think that Qshadow is talking about titles (probably without attached publications or notes) and authors that are mentioned in this book that were added here at one point but had been deleted since (and the numbers after the name are IDs?). Annie 19:12, 17 February 2017 (UTC)
Thanks, Annie, you are absolutely correct. The titles were mentioned as important SF milestones in the "History of Science Fiction by Adam Roberts". Qshadow 20:02, 17 February 2017 (UTC)
Let me check submission history <...> OK, I see one submission that matches the records that Qshadow mentioned -- see this Web page. According to "Note to Moderator" at the bottom of the page, it was a "fake omnibus to add the titles without their publication data".
It looks like the submission was approved and its data was subsequently used to create regular publication records. The "fake omnibus" publication and title were eventually deleted. The question then is why 5 of the 12 added novels are no longer in the database. Ahasuerus 19:28, 17 February 2017 (UTC)
Thanks Ahasuerus, this is indeed my question. How it is possible that titles were deleted from our database, is it database glitch (horror! horror! how many more could be lost?), or is it somebody that just deleted them without letting anyone know, in such case this is also very bad. Qshadow 20:02, 17 February 2017 (UTC)
Titles get deleted every day when they have no publications attached to them - mainly because there are a lot of operations in the DB that can leave orphaned titles that are not needed - or because they are duplicates. Do you remember when you created them if they had publications attached? (Ahasuerus, can we check in the logs based on the IDs of the titles that we have - I know that deleted titles don't show anything properly but we should have at least the addition?) Annie 20:10, 17 February 2017 (UTC)
I remember that this titles had no publications, they are so old that i didn't find (at that time) any publication for them. But in any case, why just delete titles, maybe we can better flag them as "publication missing" or something and add publications later when they become known. Qshadow 20:23, 17 February 2017 (UTC)
It is not an automatic deletion. They get flagged on a report and a decision is made by a human if they get deleted or ignored (anyone can request a delete; only a moderator can ignore). In order for them to be ignored, there should be a note or something telling the moderator why this should not be deleted (such as "Cited in "this book", published in year" - see this one for example that shows where it was published so it is obviously left for a reason). Once it is clear why we have it, it will get ignored and not deleted. Otherwise they look like a leftover from varianting or pseudonyming which needs cleaning.
The deletions are needed because there is a big amount of titles that are just wrong - for example someone types "Author by Title" by mistake while adding content somewhere. Depending on how you reverse the fields, that may leave an orphaned title - which can never get a publication because it is a wrong one to start with. So it needs deletion - no point keeping an obviously wrong title. Annie 20:53, 17 February 2017 (UTC)
Checking submission history, I see that the 5 missing titles were deleted by different moderators in 2014-2015. It happened shortly after NOVEL titles were added to the "Titles without Publications" cleanup report, so it probably happened as part of the cleanup effort. It's unfortunate, but we can get them back in by submitting the first editions of these novels as regular "New Novel" submissions. Ahasuerus 21:17, 17 February 2017 (UTC)
Thanks, i understand the reasons now. Ahasuerus, I will appreciate if you can bring them back properly (it is really difficult for me to recall the process now). And Annie, welcome to the project! last time I was here (few years ago) I think we still didn't have you with us. Qshadow 21:28, 17 February 2017 (UTC)
I have added what I could (Some submissions are still pending), hope they will stay on now. Qshadow 22:27, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
Thanks for the welcome and yeah, I am new(ish) - been around since July :) Annie 22:54, 17 February 2017 (UTC)

N/A Primary verification

What does it mean to primary verify something as "N/A"? Help:How to verify data did not have much to say on the subject. And how do I go about fixing something like this: Clarkesworld Magazine, #47 August 2010? Do we have and should we have cleanup reports for this sort of thing? Thanks. Uzume 04:25, 19 February 2017 (UTC)

It means that the chosen source has no relevance or is mute on the subject e.g. Currey for a non-english book. There's no cleanup report for this, just drop a line if the user is active, if not, perhaps there's a solution at system administrator level (in this case I suppose a bad click). Hauck 09:24, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
@Hauck: I know what an N/A verification means in general, just not what it means for a primary verification. Uzume 16:11, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
As I said, we all agree that it's just a mistake. Hauck 16:16, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
Checking yesterday's database backup, there are 261 cases where a primary verification is marked as N/A. Many are against the transient spot and taking a look at a few of those, it seems people were going down the list of secondary sources and probably included that by mistake (since it is the middle of those). While we can probably come up with some pathological cases (like a publication that only ever had a single print), it seems to me it would be better if the software just didn't allow primary slots to be marked N/A. In that meantime, I'll notify the users for the current cases. I don't think we want to make a change directly in the database, because in some cases (like the example above), it probably should be set as verified and in others as unverified. -- JLaTondre (talk) 13:34, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
@JLaTondre: Thank you. I appreciate that. Uzume 16:11, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
Agreed. As far as the larger issue goes, there is a Feature Request to "Re-do primary verifications", which should take care of the problem. Ahasuerus 15:58, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
It is good to know there is a ticket on the subject at least. Thank you. Uzume 16:11, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
Editors notified. A few are inactive. I'll keep on eye out for new occurrences going forward. -- JLaTondre (talk) 03:27, 20 February 2017 (UTC)
Don't we actually have a valid case for a N/A being the only possible value for PV1-5 - webzines? E-books can be owned but a webzine is online - downloading it does not make it owned (which is what PV1 implies). Or do we read PV1 differently for webzines (to mean "I checked the content, it is verified"? I would think of that as Transient (leaving PV1-5 effectively N/A) but I may be wrong (so asking:) ). Annie 00:21, 22 February 2017 (UTC)
Until verification is reworked to allow multiple transients, there is value in using the PV1-5 as it's the only way to register multiple verifiers. And given the potential transient nature of web content, having multiple verifications is a good thing as we might not be able to go back and double check. -- JLaTondre (talk) 02:04, 22 February 2017 (UTC)
So we basically treat Transient and the 1-5 the same way for webzines. That makes sense. Annie 02:12, 22 February 2017 (UTC)

Delete my account information


My apologies if this is answered already, I have tried to find info but have not been successful. How do I delete my account and login information on isfdb? Thank you. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Ghostinthesaibot (talkcontribs) 23:15, 18 February 2017 (UTC).

The MediaWiki software which the ISFDB (as well as Wikipedia and many other sites) uses doesn't support account deletion. User accounts are linked to verifications, Wiki posts and other data stored in the database. Deleting an account would compromise database integrity. Ahasuerus 15:54, 19 February 2017 (UTC)
And the only contribution from this account in the wiki is this request, so there's really not anything to delete. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 09:05, 20 February 2017 (UTC)

Strange Behavior When Entering Title

I'm trying to enter a title "ampersand,hashmark, (I have to spell these symbols out) x25CD;" into this anthology and what I get is this "◍." I'm guessing running afoul of the wiki?--Rkihara 19:50, 21 February 2017 (UTC)

Not wiki, html :) This is the standard way to create this symbol using unicode: The HTML is doing exactly what you are telling it to - it produces the symbol. You may try to trick it by using unicode for one of the special characters ( for example) and see if that will show the sequence? Cannot try without doing a lot of entries I will need to cancel.Annie 20:00, 21 February 2017 (UTC)
Like this (see if you accept the submission the view holds). I replaced the hashtag with its hex unicode code :) ? Annie 20:06, 21 February 2017 (UTC)
Yes, that worked. Thank You!--Rkihara 20:16, 21 February 2017 (UTC)
You are welcome :) I think there is a software bug/side effect here though - if you try to edit again, it forgets (I suspect it is just the visualization) that there is a special escaping (html on html) and is showing the complete string again. If you save again, you are back to the special symbol. So it is solved for now but it needs a patch :) Annie 20:21, 21 February 2017 (UTC)
Yes, there is something funky going on. It looks like the software is not escaping certain characters correctly in "edit mode". I'll need to play with it some more. Ahasuerus 20:37, 21 February 2017 (UTC)
The right way to enter &#x25CD; in HTML is using &amp;#x25CD; since all HTML entities are prefixed with ampersand, just escape that (as &amp;) and the rest should be fine. That said, there does seem to be something wrong with the software not escaping things upon edit (you should not have to use escapes like that as it should do it correctly for you; the only field where you are allowed to enter HTML and thus need to use escaping is the note unless I am confused). Uzume 05:04, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
As long as it worked, it was a right way - it does not matter if you escape the ampersand or the hashtag really - either does the trick to break the sequence. :) Annie 06:12, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
Just because it works in a browser or two does not make that functionality standard and portable (i.e., it might not work in all and/or it might break in the future, etc.). Uzume 11:06, 25 February 2017 (UTC)

Search by Interviewed Author

How do I search for titles by interviewee? I recently came across this Duplicate Finder for Christie Yant and I noticed none of these show up on Duplicate Finder for Ken Liu (though you can find them on his summary page). So I started doing some advanced searching and could not figure out how to search by interviewee (I can search by Reviewed Author but not Interviewed Author). Thank you. Uzume 02:22, 25 February 2017 (UTC)

Seconding a request for this (I could not find a way either).
In this specific case, all his interviews have his name (a lot of them end up being like that) on it so this finds them (Title Type is INTERVIEW and Title contains Ken Liu) Annie 03:04, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
Good idea -- FR 987 created. Ahasuerus 14:44, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
Done. Ahasuerus 20:33, 25 February 2017 (UTC)

How to enter a box set of chapbooks?

What's the correct way to enter a box set of seven chapbooks, when the box set itself and the contained chapbooks all seem to have the same ISBN, and the chapbooks have not been published before? Deutsche Nationalbibliothek's way is to have records for the box itself and also records for the seven chapbooks (as a "part of" relation between box set and chapbook). Ideas:

  1. The simplest way would be to enter it as an ANTHOLOGY and the short fiction as the contained titles. But then there'd be no title record for and no information about the chapbooks (except for some remarks which could be made in the NOTE field).
  2. Enter each CHAPBOOK separately and then the box set as an ANTHOLOGY with the CHAPBOOKs imported into it.

Idea #2 looks more correct to me. Jens Hitspacebar 10:23, 25 February 2017 (UTC)

Ordinarily boxed sets (also called "box sets") are entered as OMNIBUSES, ANTHOLOGIES or COLLECTIONS as the case may be, i.e. your idea #1. I don't think I have seen CHAPBOOK titles inside OMNIBUSES. I suppose it's possible since you can have COLLECTION and ANTHOLOGY titles inside OMNIBUSES, but it would be unusual. Ahasuerus 14:53, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
Ok, I see. Thanks for the hint regarding the "boxed set" term. I had searched the wiki for "box set" beforehand and was scratching my head because against expectation it had resulted in a few hits only. Jens Hitspacebar 15:15, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
I think "box set" is gaining on "boxed set" -- see this article. Ahasuerus 15:23, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
Not to start a raging debate, but I think if it's actually a box of separate books, then OMNIBUS is more appropriate (despite the lack of a NOVEL-length work). It's the fact that the constituents are/were separate standalone, non-pamphlet publications. Granted, that they haven't been issued/sold individually makes it a little murky. But that I could have any one of them and not the others makes me consider them "separate". Just an opinion. --MartyD 16:12, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
I see where you are coming from, but suppose this anthology/omnibus were to be published as an e-book. Would you still consider it an omnibus? If not, would you then create a separate container title for it? Ahasuerus 16:24, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
Apart from the lack of a NOVEL-length work, the rule than an OMNIBUS must contain "multiple works that have previously been published independently" doesn't apply to this boxed set as well. Jens Hitspacebar 16:41, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
However, Marty's remarks are the same which initially did let me prefer idea #2 above. But with the current rules regarding OMNIBUS types, #1 makes more sense to me. On a more general note there seems to be a more of less complete lack of documentation about boxed sets and rules of entering (not that I want to open a can of worms here...). Jens Hitspacebar 16:53, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
I have always thought of boxed sets as something that applies to publications but not to titles. In my mind, if the same two novels appear in three different publications, it makes them pubs under the same OMNIBUS title whether the publication is a single volume hardcover, a boxed set or an ebook. I think the majority of our omnibus titles are currently entered that way. Of course, some of them are VTs because the title does not match the title of the corresponding single-volume edition.
However, it looks like some editors view boxed sets as separate titles. For example, there is a separate title record for "The Lord of the Rings (Boxed Set)" and the Notes field reads "This title record is for boxed sets only, i.e. three individual books sold as a set in one box. DO NOT USE this title record if the three novels are published in one volume." Scanning the list of publications under the main OMNIBUS title makes it clear that not everyone followed this suggestion. Ahasuerus 17:52, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
I acknowledge that "previously" also does not apply, furthering the murkiness. And maybe that's enough murk to indicate OMNIBUS is not the way to go. In my loose-constructionist view "published independently" is the main key to the OMNIBUS vs. COLLECTION/ANTHOLOGY distinction. An OMNIBUS collects multiple things that were published standalone, while COLLECTION/ANTHOLOGY has at most one of those, along with other things that were not published standalone.
Here, I view each book in the box as separate/standalone, due to the physical presentation. So they're sort of being published simultaneously as separate and as collected (sort of a collection of chapbooks whose previous publication dates happen to be 8888). Unlike the chicken and the egg, the individual books in the collection must have come first, since the box is collecting them. So my inclination is to go with OMNIBUS and if a separate book came out that had all of them in a single volume, I'd treat it as an OMNIBUS due to the existence of this previous boxed set. In the absence of this boxed set, it would treat it as a COLLECTION instead.
All that said, I don't think it's a big deal either way. I was just sharing an alternative viewpoint. --MartyD 18:49, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
McSweeney's has done this (bundle of individually bound stories) several times. Suppose just one of the stories in such an issue was speculative. Would you catalogue the issue as a magazine issue, with one story listed as contents; or would you catalogue the story as a chapbook, mentioning in notes that it was part of an issue of McSweeney's? --Vasha 19:02, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
I vote to enter it as a magazine and explain inside that it has a weird format (McSweeney's is always tricky...) Annie 19:48, 25 February 2017 (UTC)

Looking for help figuring out a cover art question

I was looking at some of my older additions to see if I could figure out some more cover artists and I've run into a question... I got matches for all three of the Greek covers ( and and but I can't make sense of the result. On the site there are original works that are clearly the sources for the pictures, but it's in Korean. Google translate tells me: "The scanned images are from the first issue of Philip Dunn's "The Seven Wonders of the Universe". (This is also a thing that Omni has picked up;)"

Is there some way to turn this into information about an artist's name or some other useful thing to put into the records for these books? KarenHunt 14:26, 25 February 2017 (UTC)

I wonder if Philip Dunn could be the artist. Homeville lists "pi" (pictorial) by Philip Dunn as having appeared in the Dec 1979 Omni. --MartyD 15:53, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
You could ask Bluesman (Bill) about it. I see he is primary verifier of that issue. --MartyD 15:57, 25 February 2017 (UTC)
Have now done so... KarenHunt 17:10, 25 February 2017 (UTC)

Simpler coverart question

Is this cover (Bulgarian GJ) a variant of this one (English GJ)? I thought it was at first, but I can't come up with a simple translation of the one that turns it into the other.... EDIT: And, if indeed it is not, how do I remove the artist's name from the record? I don't have another name to put in its place, and it seems the website won't let me simply delete the name... KarenHunt 22:44, 25 February 2017 (UTC)

Two steps process. Step 1 -remove title from publication - there is a link in the editing tools. When it is approved - delete title. Annie 00:22, 26 February 2017 (UTC)
Thanks, I'll give it a try. Any way of knowing who the artist really is for that cover? KarenHunt 01:57, 26 February 2017 (UTC)
Ron Miller has a contact link on his site. You could try sending him email and asking about it/them. --MartyD 03:32, 26 February 2017 (UTC)
Some of the Bulgarian covers from this period are a bit of a mystery. If you ever find out, that you would be great. :) Annie 05:58, 26 February 2017 (UTC)
Indeed! Most of the ones I've solved have involved a pretty big mystery hunt via google images. Best trick is to get a copy of the cover, bring it up in MS Paint, and crop out all the lettering and publisher decorations. Then drag the picture into a google images search and look at anything that doesn't show the cover of the book itself. Some of the Bulgarian ones have shown up on computer wallpaper sites (I managed to track down an artist for one of them but not others), and one was a montage that I half-solved. If I get a hit, I visit sites with the artist's work and walk through as many of their pictures as I can to see if I can get hits for any other covers associated with the same language (for Bulgarian that got me a couple more). There are three that I still don't know even after trying all those tricks. I actually have a decent chance of success asking Ron Miller - if the contact link doesn't work, I could try going through Lois... KarenHunt 12:51, 26 February 2017 (UTC)
I checked with Ron Miller, he says it's not his work. I'm not succeeding in removing the claim that he did the art, though. KarenHunt 17:02, 26 February 2017 (UTC)

I have tried repeatedly to understand the process of adding a photo of myself to my author page and can't seem to get it. I get no further than uploading the image. Please help. Thanks! -Thomas Kleaton

I have added your uploaded image to the summary page. Stonecreek 04:28, 1 March 2017 (UTC)

Linked reviews

I recently stumbled upon this record: Review of: The End of Fame. You can probably see the issue with this (it states one of the authors of the reviewed work as Bill Adams (1879-1953) but links to The End of Fame which states one of its authors as Bill Adams). I am not sure how to resolve this but am leaning towards unifying upon the later author (due to the other work in the series). Rectification of this issue aside, shouldn't there be a cleanup report for this sort of thing? It seems to me the review titles (since review sections are actually essays) should always match the title of linked work and authors of reviewed works should always match authors of linked titles (possibly through pseudonyms; I have not thought it out that carefully yet). Is there one and if not can we get one? Thank you. Uzume 09:49, 1 March 2017 (UTC)

A problem with German covers

There are German omnibus editions of Lois McMaster Bujold's works that I'm a bit confused about covers for. It's a series of six books, and I'm not having problems with Barrayar Band 1, 5, or 6; only with 2, 3, and 4. Basically, there seem to be two distinct but very similar covers for each of them, and I don't see any hints of separate printings/publishings by looking at the book descriptions.

For one version of each: Band 2: Band 3: Band 4:

For another version of each, all on one page:

Does anyone know how to resolve this? KarenHunt 15:56, 5 March 2017 (UTC)

I think there's no easy way to resolve this. I have stumbled over this with other publications as well. Amazon does display one cover per ISBN, but the actual cover may have changed with different printings. Most likely amazon displays the most recent version (of the most recent printing), not the one for the first printing. What lovelybooks policy is, I don't know. I'm afraid that the only clean way will be to leave the cover image blank until someone is able to verify the respective publications. (I'll see if I can find some trace at the local secondhand retailers, but this will take some time, and perhaps will not lead to a resolution). Stonecreek 20:20, 5 March 2017 (UTC)
Thanks for the help; when I put those books up in the next few days, I'll leave the covers off until a real answer is knowable. KarenHunt 20:43, 5 March 2017 (UTC)
Another way to confirm covers is to search used book sites for a listing that states an exact printing number or year and has a photo of an actual book. I've had some success with that, though it certainly takes a lot of time. ----Vasha 23:12, 5 March 2017 (UTC)
I suppose if I've been willing to do that kind of work to find artists' names, I might as well give a chance to that. abebooks, here I come... KarenHunt 23:31, 5 March 2017 (UTC)
Well, it was a try. abebooks and picclick eurobuch all had copies with both covers, but nothing I saw helped me determine how to distinguish them from each other. (And one other site was willing to tell me the "Der Junge Miles" version of Band 2 was written in 1974 - I think I doubt that claim.) In the meantime, I've also asked a friend of mine in Austria if he can check as well. He might or might not be able to help, depending. KarenHunt 23:53, 5 March 2017 (UTC)
The covers shown at are the ones from the first printing of the revised new editions published between 2004 and 2006. Heyne changed the covers (and titles) but not the ISBNs for later printings, those are the ones found at Amazon. I've bought them when they were first released and will upload scans. --Welo 19:07, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
Done. Updated the covers of "Der junge Miles [German] (2005)", "Gefährliche Missionen [German] (2005)" and "Der Doppelgänger [German] (2005)" and added them to the entries. The others were correct. Additional info: The release of "Der Doppelgänger" was originally announced under the title "Waffenbrüder" (Waffenbrüder is one of the novels in this Omnibus) and Heyne already published pre-release images, but changed the title for the release. That's the image currently shown at the publication. --Welo 19:39, 20 May 2017 (UTC)

set tag to private

I can't find this in the help-- how do you set a tag to private? --Vasha 11:01, 10 March 2017 (UTC)

I never use tags but it seems that, when you click on it, you can change the status of this tag at will. IIRC this will affect all the tags of the same name (so not only yours). Hauck 11:57, 10 March 2017 (UTC)
That's right. However, only moderators can change the status of a tag. Ahasuerus 13:59, 10 March 2017 (UTC)
OK, please set my Read17 tag to private, then. (Makes sense to have this moderators-only so you can check to make sure there's only one person using that tag.) --Vasha 15:08, 10 March 2017 (UTC)
Done. We have quite a few "read" and "to read" tags including "This is not SF but a good read" :-) Once in a while I do a search on "tag contains read" and set the private flag as appropriate. We should probably create a report of "recently added tags", but it would take some time because of the way they are stored in the database. Ahasuerus 15:47, 10 March 2017 (UTC)

How to change the author's name?

The author's name was entered incorrectly. How can it be corrected? Need instruction to proceed with editing.

This is usually done by a moderator, can you tell me more about our mistake? Hauck 07:53, 17 March 2017 (UTC)

How to get Magazine Series Name by MySQL query

Hi, I am trying to list all magazines publications with their parent Series name, like this:

Issue Date      Publication Title                      Magazine Series
1958.01         Imaginative Tales, January 1958        Imaginative Tales 
1958.03         Imaginative Tales, March 1958          Imaginative Tales

to get Magazine Series I need title_id of the publication, but for some reason I can't find how can I get it, I can only get title_ids for publication contents, which is not what i need. after I get title_id of the publication, I believe I can get series name easily. Please help, Qshadow 23:41, 17 March 2017 (UTC)

Publication titles and dates are stored in the "pubs" table. Series names are stored in the "series" table. To go from the former to the latter you will first need to jump from "pubs" to "pub_content" using the "pub_id" field. You will then want to jump to the "titles" table using the "title_id" field -- make sure to look for the title record whose title type ("title_ttype") is "EDITOR". Next, check if the accessed title record is a "variant title". If it is, then you will want to retrieve its parent's id using the "title_parent" field. Finally you can use the "series_id" field in the title record to jump to the "series" table. Happy joining! :-) Ahasuerus 00:06, 18 March 2017 (UTC)
Thanks! my problem was that I thought that pub_content only includes titles that are "contents" of the publication. Qshadow 17:00, 18 March 2017 (UTC)
I think I was celebrating prematurely, I got the query I wanted, but I do not understand what will I miss if I do not check for "variant title". here is what I did:
DATE_FORMAT(mag_pub.pub_year,'%Y.%m'), mag_pub.pub_title, mag_pub.pub_id, mag_title.title_id, mag_title.title_title,
s.series_id, s.series_title, s.series_parent
FROM pubs mag_pub, pub_content mag_pub_contents, titles mag_title, series s
WHERE mag_pub.pub_ctype = 'MAGAZINE'
AND mag_title.title_ttype = 'EDITOR'
AND mag_pub.pub_id = mag_pub_contents.pub_id
AND mag_pub_contents.title_id = mag_title.title_id
AND mag_title.series_id = s.series_id;
btw, i do not think i need to use JOIN since every magazine belongs to some series, unless maybe magazines that only have single issue? Regards, Qshadow 19:55, 18 March 2017 (UTC)
You are already using joins, they are just implicit inner joins :-) And fear not, all magazines are supposed to be part of a series. We have a cleanup report to ensure it. You can use the same logic for FANZINE pubs as well.
Thanks for info, this was very handy! Qshadow 21:18, 19 March 2017 (UTC)
As far as parent titles go, you want them because a variant title can't be in a series. If you add a UNION on something like:
FROM pubs mag_pub, pub_content mag_pub_contents,
titles mag_title, titles t2, series s
WHERE mag_pub.pub_ctype = 'MAGAZINE'
AND mag_title.title_ttype = 'EDITOR'
AND mag_pub.pub_id = mag_pub_contents.pub_id
AND mag_pub_contents.title_id = mag_title.title_id
AND mag_title.title_parent = t2.title_id
AND t2.series_id = s.series_id
you'll harvest another 2,531 pubs. Ahasuerus 04:11, 19 March 2017 (UTC)
Oh I see, I actually do not need this extra variant pubs, because they are all dups (no new contents) of what I have already got. So I better even add "AND mag_title.title_parent = '0' ", just correct me if I am wrong, Thanks! Qshadow 21:18, 19 March 2017 (UTC)
Oops, I again rushed. it looks like I do loose some publications, because apparently some publications belong ONLY to a variant titles. Qshadow 22:25, 19 March 2017 (UTC)
That's right. Consider Analog Science Fiction/Science Fact - 1967 by "John W. Campbell". It's an EDITOR title which has 12 publications associated with it. The Title page says "Series: Astounding / Analog (1937-1971), but that's because it displays the series associated with the parent title by "John W. Campbell, Jr.", Campbell's canonical name. The variant EDITOR title doesn't have series information. Ahasuerus 23:35, 19 March 2017 (UTC)

How to enter an unusual page numbering sequence

I am entering a book that has the following page numbering sequence:

 (1 unnumbered page)

So the roman numeral numbering for notes and glossary at the end of the book continues the roman numeral numbering at the start of the book. In the "Pages" field of the publication record, how is this entered? is it:

 a) xxxiii+468+lv
 b) lv+468
 c) xxxiii+468+xxii
 d)something else?

Thanks, Ldb001 15:34, 18 March 2017 (UTC)

I'd say b) (or, 468+lv as an alternative, depending on your preference) and adding a note about the distribution of the extra pages. Stonecreek 16:15, 18 March 2017 (UTC)

What to do about reviews of illustrated chapbooks

The latest Theaker's Quarterly has reviews of two heavily-illustrated chapbook publications of Neil Gaiman stories; the reviews talk almost as much about the illustrations as the text. What should I do -- enter them as unlinked reviews of graphic works, link them to the title records for the Gaiman stories, or what? We don't have the illustrated chapbooks in the database yet. I suppose I could create those records and link the reviews to the chapbooks instead of to the shortfiction contents. --Vasha 01:57, 19 March 2017 (UTC)

Do the chapbooks contain the stories in their entirety? If yes, it does not matter that they are illustarted - they are eligible for inclusion, add them and add the interior art as well. Or are those some of his children books? It may be easier to answer if you share which chapbooks are reviewed? Annie 02:05, 19 March 2017 (UTC)
PS: Part of why I am asking is because I just unearthed most of my Gaiman collection and if I have them, I can add them and verify them and you can link to them. Annie 02:18, 19 March 2017 (UTC)
It is the editions of Black Dog and The Monarch of the Glen from Headline Press in 2016. --Vasha 02:22, 19 March 2017 (UTC)
OK - so these do not qualify as graphic works (they are merely illustrated) - the graphic flag is for a graphic novel (the few that are allowed anyway); these ones can be compared to The Very Persistent Gappers of Frip - the complete text is there, the addition of the pictures do not make them less of text works. So they are eligible for addition here. Looking at the shelf, I do not see any of the Headline books so they are still in a box... somewhere. So... if you want to add them as chapbooks, you can. Or I can add them and then complete the records when I find them (unpacking is a lot of fun - especially when you get distracted into reading the books you are unpacking). And yes - I think the review needs to be linked to the chapbook (can we do that? If we cannot, this is a bug :)) Annie 02:39, 19 March 2017 (UTC)
I agree -- reviews are normally linked to the short fiction instead of the chapbook because that's what it's a review of. But in this case, not so. --Vasha 02:59, 19 March 2017 (UTC)
One problem will be that all chapbooks of the same story will have a single title record. Unless if this one has a special name... I wish we could point reviews to publications for cases like that (instead of titles). Annie 03:23, 19 March 2017 (UTC)
Well no, you don't want to link to just the hardcover publication rather than the ebook. And although it would be possible to put the chapbook in the DB as "Black Dog (illustrated edition)" I think that would be contrary to DB practices which usually take no notice of illustrations, either for distinguishing different titles or any other bibliographic purpose except to list them in the contents. --Vasha 03:37, 19 March 2017 (UTC)
And herein lines the problem. And while some illustrated books do have e-books, some do not (but they have multiple printing). It's... an interesting question. Maybe this discussion needs to be elsewhere - there does not seem to be an easy answer. I start wondering if pointing to the story AND adding a note to the review to link to the publications and explain the review is not the best option. Annie 03:43, 19 March 2017 (UTC)
Sorry to chime in, but as we don't put reviews of illustrations into the database, is doesn't matter how much of the review deals with the art (as long as there's some part of the review that deals with the shortfiction part). The title of the chapbook doesn't matter either: just add a note to the review title on the rather short relation with Gaiman's shortfiction. Stonecreek 06:02, 19 March 2017 (UTC)
That's true, you're right. I have created review records For the shortfiction with notes as to which edition it is. --Vasha 13:23, 19 March 2017 (UTC)

Bev Geddes (not Bev Geddez) - incorrect author's name (need to be corrected)

I noticed Bev Geddes is incorrectly spelled as Bev Geddez in Strangers Among Us anthology ( and I can't correct it since it needs a moderator to make the changes. Could one of the moderators please make the changes? Based on publisher's website: (see the Table of Contents tab). Other source: Thank you.

I've corrected this error (set the name to Geddes). Note that you could have done this by going at short story's title level here and used the "Edit Title Data" link (the submission would still have to be approved). Thanks for the tip. Hauck 07:58, 23 March 2017 (UTC)

How to determine if a magazine is SF or non-genre?

I see that we have "general interest (non-genre)" Magazines and Fiction Magazines lists on the website, but I can't find the SQL DB field that tell me me which is which. If it is not in DB, how can I still determine the type? Thanks, Qshadow 10:52, 23 March 2017 (UTC)

It's (as usual) quite subjective for borderline cases. For me, a "genre" magazine is a magazine quite exclusively devoted to spec-fic. So Nature or EQMM are not genre magazines. The type is decided on a case-by-case basis see here for an example of a discussion on this point. Hauck 11:59, 23 March 2017 (UTC)
Thanks Hauck, but right now I do not care how the decision was made. I pretty fine with the list of Fiction magazines on the Magazines page. I only want to know if it is marked somewhere that a magazine belongs to this list or not. In short, I want to get an SQL query that will return me ONLY magazines from this list and no other. Qshadow 12:34, 23 March 2017 (UTC)
The Magazines page, like other Wiki-based pages, is a tool which helps editors update the database. The presence or absence of a particular magazine is not dispositive.
On the database side, title records include a (recently added) "non-genre" flag, which your SQL code can examine. For example, you can ask the database to compile a list of titles whose title type is EDITOR and whose non-genre flag is set to 'Yes'. At this time, only 171 titles meet these criteria, which is probably a small fraction of the total number of non-genre magazines in the database. We haven't made it a priority to update this flag for magazines, but it may be something to consider. Ahasuerus 13:17, 23 March 2017 (UTC)
Thanks Ahasuerus, I understand now. But even IF we had this flag per title, this is not so good in case of magazines, because we do not want to mark each magazine title as genre/non-genre, instead we probably would like to mark all the magazine series as genre/non-genre, isn't it? Actually, on second thought I see many things that should be a field per magazine series and not per each title or publication, eg pub_ctype ('MAGAZINE','FANZINE') or title_ttype 'EDITOR' is unnecessary duplicated for all publications of each Magazine. Is there a script that checks that these duplicate fields are really the same across all the pubs that belong to a series? Qshadow 13:53, 23 March 2017 (UTC)
We have a few series which contain both EDITOR and non-EDITOR records. At one point I suggested disallowing mixed EDITOR/non-EDITOR series, but we were not able to reach consensus.
As far as the non-genre flag goes, it's possible for a series (not necessarily a magazine series) to contain both genre and non-genre titles. A while back I entered a horror series which consisted of two volumes. One of them had the protagonist battle cannibals (non-SF) while the other one pitted him against vampires (SF). Ahasuerus 14:52, 23 March 2017 (UTC)
Thanks, What is the definition of "EDITOR" type? at least generally. Qshadow 16:50, 23 March 2017 (UTC)
EDITOR is the title type used by magazine and fanzine titles. But first let me clarify how titles and publications are linked.
Each publication has a "reference" title, basically the main title in the pub. For example, if a NOVEL publication contains 1 NOVEL title, 1 ESSAY title (e.g. an introduction), 2 INTERIORART titles and a COVERART title, the NOVEL title is the pub's "reference" title. Ordinarily the title type of the reference title matches the publication type of the publication. However, the type of the reference title in MAGAZINE and FANZINE publications is always EDITOR. In addition, EDITOR titles are unusual in that we merge them as long as they are for the same magazine, editor, official title and year. That's why the "Magazine Editor Series" section of H. L. Gold's Summary page has fewer than 35 lines even though he edited well over 100 magazine issues. Ahasuerus 17:35, 23 March 2017 (UTC)
Thanks, I got it. Qshadow 19:25, 23 March 2017 (UTC)
Another thing to search for would be ones whose Author field begins with "Editors of..." (since we try not to create author records for the individual editors of nongenre mags). You'd get some false positives and false negatives that way but not many. --Vasha 13:59, 23 March 2017 (UTC)
I will probably just parse the HTML page and compare the magazine names ;) Qshadow 16:50, 23 March 2017 (UTC)

Inconsistency in magazines parent naming and hierarchy

I have found 5 cases when a magazine is both a parent series and also a regular series with titles belonging directly to it, for example: Absolute Magnitude

has Absolute Magnitude titles belonging to it directly and Harsh Mistress titles belonging to sub series.

I feel that this is wrong, because in all such other cases we tend to create a special sub-series for the titles, for example:

Aboriginal Science Fiction
Amazing Stories

have created sub-series for all groups of titles, and no title belongs directly to parent. So in the case for Absolute Magnitude we should have two sub-series: "Absolute Magnitude" and "Harsh Mistress".

Here is the list of all 5 problematic parent Series:

Weird Tales
Absolute Magnitude
Startling Science Stories
SF Commentary

All other series are OK. Qshadow 19:36, 23 March 2017 (UTC)

As a possible solution I've adjusted the series for SF Commentary here. It seems a reasonable fix to me. What say you? Doug / Vornoff 07:33, 24 March 2017 (UTC)
Thanks Doug, SF Commentary looks perfect now! We have 4 more to fix, is it possible? Qshadow 11:23, 24 March 2017 (UTC)
I would fix it myself, but i do not see how to create new Series. Also, I can't decide how to name these new sub series, eg what to name it in case of Weird Tales? Qshadow 13:21, 24 March 2017 (UTC)
It seems to me there are two broad categories of series which use parent series for periodicals. One category consists of more than one title for the same periodical, in other words the changed title follows in sequence from the previous and carries on either the numbering or publishing date or both. This shows up nicely in the series view and also makes sense when seen in the issue grid view, although most of the time in this view you can't tell which entry is what title. One example of this is Coven 13-Witchcraft and Sorcery.
The second category consists of magazine titles that are linked in some way but are not sequential, so that their dates overlap. Reprints and annuals/quarterlies can do this, e.g. New Worlds. The Amazing Stories parent series leaves the entire run of the mag alone, despite its having changed titles several times (but retaining Amazing in all) but adds a quarterly and an annual. Astounding-Analog has its run broken up into pre-Campbell, Campbell, and post-Campbell series, plus the UK version in for good measure. This looks pretty good in the grid because all the US issues are sequential and the UK issues are marked off with "UK" so they are distinguishable.
Here's what I would do with the other above mags you cited:
Weird Tales: Top series - Weird Tales. Subseries #1 Weird Tales (1923-1974); Subseries #2 Weird Tales (Lin Carter Anthology Series); Subseries #3 Weird Tales (1984-1994); Subseries #4 Worlds of Fantasy & Horror; Subseries #5 Weird Tales (1998-2014). Advantage: the series list would show in chronological order. Disadvantage: can't see all the 'regular' Weird Tales by themselves in a grid. OR: Make the 3 existing series belong to a new parent series in the same order as shown.
Absolute Magnitude: Only 2 'Harsh Mistress' issues. I would delete the Harsh Mistress series and have the 2 HM issues belong to the remaining series, renaming it "Harsh Mistress / Absolute Magnitude".
Impulse: Do the same as the above with new name for parent series "Impulse / SF Impulse"
Startling Stories: Would probably go with re-arranging the 2 existing series here into a parent called "Startling Science Stories / Alien Worlds".
That's it. Thought I'd leave this open for a bit here and see if anyone wants to give input before actually doing it in case I'm off-base here. Thanks, Doug / Vornoff 23:41, 24 March 2017 (UTC)
Your suggestion to get rid of sub-series in some cases (Absolute Magnitude, Impulse, Startling) and have a flat structure is even better than creating additional sub-series. I like it. For Weird Tales I would go with second option and just name the new sub-series "Weird Tales Magazine" without adding the years in brackets. Qshadow 00:19, 25 March 2017 (UTC)

Pirated CreateSpace editions

I keep noticing things like this, which is a CreateSpace edition of a China Miéville novella, no longer available for sale. I feel certain that such books are pirated editions which Amazon takes down as soon as they notice them. Now, the database legitimately catalogues these, I guess, because they were available for sale, however briefly. But is there some policy or practice about them? I don't feel like I can make a note on this edition because I'm only guessing it's pirated, not certain. (And this Bujold edition, and so many others.) --Vasha 23:59, 23 March 2017 (UTC)

We had a discussion of pirated editions a few years ago. The outcome was that we should list them as long as they meet all other eligibility criteria. At the time we mentioned that we didn't want to become a repository of links to pirated online content, but, thankfully, it hasn't been an issue.
As far as this particular situation goes, it's hard to tell without access to more specific data. In general Amazon has a history of keeping records for books that were canceled by the publisher, so the fact that an Amazon page exists (or existed at some point) doesn't guarantee publication. Perhaps the Miéville, the Bujold and the others were taken down by Amazon before the announced publication date, hence no publication actually occurred, but it's hard to be sure. Ahasuerus 00:32, 24 March 2017 (UTC)
This Hungarian edition of Geoff Ryman's air is a pirated edition. Geoff never gave them permission, they never asked him, they never sent him a copy. (He was a little taken aback when I showed him my copy.) We still include it. This edition of Frankenstein was a pirated copy. We still index it. I can imagine that we might treat such CreateSpace pirated editions differently, but in general the fact that something is pirated is not sufficient on its own to prevent us from listing it. Chavey 00:35, 24 March 2017 (UTC)
True, but I think the problem that we face in this case is more complex. Suppose a pirate bought a fresh ISBN and stole the text of a new Bujold novel in December 2011. He created a new Amazon seller account on January 1, 2012. He then entered his pirated edition of the Bujold into the Amazon system using January 15 as the publication date. The Amazon system dutifully created a record. On January 10 Amazon's legal department realized what was going on and banned the seller.
In this scenario the ISBN was never published. However, because of the way Amazon's systems worked at the time, the announced ISBN remained in the system for months and was added to our database in early 2012. Now, 5 years later, the Amazon record is gone and we have no way of telling whether the pirated edition was actually for sale in January 2012. Ahasuerus 00:54, 24 March 2017 (UTC)
I think it would be useful to keep them, but leave a note explaining the situation (whatever that is). We could even try contacting the author or publisher of the real work to see if the version was pirated. If so, we could note that. Some of us have contacts with publishers, editors, and authors, so we could at least reach out to them. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 01:00, 24 March 2017 (UTC)
I think that it's far more likely that a title never was published if we have no further proof as an entry at amazon's that no longer exists. We should get rid of them, I'd say, and have already deleted a few of such cases over the last year or so. Stonecreek 09:35, 24 March 2017 (UTC)
The problem being that authors and publishers can remove listings from Amazon themselves, and I know some who have done that. No longer being on Amazon is not necessarily a good way to determine if something is legit or ever existed. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 18:57, 24 March 2017 (UTC)
Usually not. But this one is so obviously pirated that chances of it actually having been published (or survived more than a few days) are very slim. There is a difference between smaller authors and publishers removing works from Amazon and major author's pirated versions (in English). Annie 19:08, 24 March 2017 (UTC)

Searching images of artist signatures?

Is there a way to search for images of artist signatures? I have a book with a signature of "Franco" on the front cover. It's a paranormal romance published in 2001 and I suspect the artist might be Franco Accornero. No artist credit in book. Any way to get more information? BungalowBarbara 01:28, 24 March 2017 (UTC)

Well, here is one piece of art that bears a signature by Franco Accornero, and it seems to read 'FRANCO'. What I had done was to search through his works as listed on the author's page. Christian Stonecreek 09:42, 24 March 2017 (UTC)
I agree that the signature above the frowning man's shoulder says "Franco". We may want to add it to [[Category:Artist Signature Images]]. Ahasuerus 13:46, 24 March 2017 (UTC)

"Destinies" listed as Magazine but marked as Anthology

Destinies appears on our magazines web page as magazine and it even has its own "series grid" page , but in the pub_ctype field it is marked as Anthology. Is this a bug? Qshadow 22:31, 24 March 2017 (UTC)

Are you mixing up two separate series? Destiny which is a magazine, has a grid and is in the Magazines directory (under de) and "Destinies" that you linked above that is not in the Magazines list, does not have a magazine grid and is an anthology series? Annie 00:35, 25 March 2017 (UTC)
PS: If you mean that this exists, so do for example - if you pass it a valid series number, it will show it as a grid. It is just a visual representation. Or do you mean something else? Annie 00:38, 25 March 2017 (UTC)
Thanks Annie, I didn't know that the grid is automatic, the Destinies I found are here Magazines#D, and they link to Anthology as you said, but they should not be on Magazines page. Btw, I already found two more problems on the Magazines page: "Amazing Experiences" and "Fantasy Macabre" are listed there, although they are Fanzines and should go to Fanzines page. If it is just a bug, i will move them. Qshadow 00:46, 25 March 2017 (UTC)
Ah, the Wiki page. Once upon a time it was probably added as a magazine (we have a lot of those cases), then noone updated the wiki page when it got transformed. You can just edit the page and remove it from there. It is not an automated list - it is built by hand. So if you find an issue - go ahead and fix it. So not a bug at all - the wiki is not automatically connected to the DB - unlike the Magazine directory that I linked above (which uses EDITOR as a type - so fanzines and magazines are mixed):) Annie 01:01, 25 March 2017 (UTC)
Thanks Annie, will fix now. Qshadow 01:13, 25 March 2017 (UTC)

nonfiction essays vs nongenre

1) looking at Arthur C. Clarke's Voices from the Sky,, a book of nonfiction science essays. Do the book/essays get listed as nongenre?
2) given that they are science essays not sf, do the contents get listed for the pubs? I notice some are and was thinking of adding to the one i have on hand, which does not yet
Thanks gzuckier 15:30, 28 March 2017 (UTC)

A fair number of them are SF-related, most clearly "H. G. Wells and Science Fiction", or at least "speculative science"-related, so I would include them.
Re: setting the "non-genre" flag, I think we mostly use it for ESSAYs when they are completely outside the field, e.g. Prologue to Henry James, "The Abasement of the Northmores". Ahasuerus 18:02, 28 March 2017 (UTC)
ok, thanks gzuckier 21:16, 28 March 2017 (UTC)

Can I catalog Strange Horizons' new sister-publication Samovar?

Strange Horizons has launched a quarterly spin-off, Samovar, devoted to spec fic in translation. Its editorial board is Laura Friis, Greg West and Sarah Dodd (so not the same editors as SH -- Niall Harrison, Jane Crowley, and Kate Dollarhyde). They share a website, though, and at least this week, as you can see here, SH is speaking as if the issue of Samovar is their latest issue. I think this magazine is not eligible to be catalogued because it's a webzine (SH is an exception because of awards). Seems to me that Samovar is separate enough from SH to not be brought into the database under the same umbrella. But what do you think? --Vasha 00:34, 31 March 2017 (UTC)

adding author data

Hi, I'm a currently indexed author (NYRSF 2011), and although I have an active accouint, I unable to login to add author data. can you give me a hand> Geoff Sutton

Hello, to add author data go there and use the "Edit Author Data" link on the left. Note that login are separate for the site and for the wiki (you need to log in twice). Hauck 09:17, 1 April 2017 (UTC)

Ballantine's Classic Library of Science Fiction

I stumbled into the series, Ballantine's Classic Library of Science Fiction, and it looks like there are a large number of publications which fit in this category. However, doing a quick scan of the database, I see many of them are multiply verified and not attached to the series. It looks like every "The Best of <famous author>" printed by Ballantine/Del Rey in the 70s and 80s would fit this category. Should I only update the ones that I have a copy of, or can I work off the list of titles from one of my books and update them all? Do I need to systematically reach out to all of the verifiers before I add the 'Pub Series'? TAWeiss 18:31, 1 April 2017 (UTC)

IIRC this topic has already surfaced. You can change at will the publications that you own but not all of them based on a listing in one title, PV trumps all. Hauck 19:40, 1 April 2017 (UTC)
The covers themselves are the source. You can see the 'Classic Science Fiction' header on the covers. I'll update the ones I own, and work on collecting the rest. Found a list here Thanks. TAWeiss 15:03, 2 April 2017 (UTC)
Yes but 1) only a PV can attest or not the belonging to a series, 2) we usually do not go by what's on cover. Hauck 17:00, 2 April 2017 (UTC)
As a primary verifier, I usually do look at the cover of my publications to determine such things (so I do go by what's on the cover). Uzume 03:37, 3 April 2017 (UTC)

Editors of nongenre anthologies

Discussion moved to R&S. --Vasha 20:28, 5 April 2017 (UTC)

Error message "Error: When editing a publication, the Content section must contain one reference title."

Hi, when I try to edit this publication and submit my changes, I get a message "Error: When editing a publication, the Content section must contain one reference title." Huh? Can someone help? P.S. I am just updating the image link and adding to Notes. BungalowBarbara 02:27, 5 April 2017 (UTC)

Sorry about that, it was a side effect of a software change that I have been working on, with decidedly mixed success, over the last few days. I have installed a quick fix. Could you please try again? Ahasuerus 03:47, 5 April 2017 (UTC)
Thanks! It worked now. BungalowBarbara 20:36, 5 April 2017 (UTC)

Help in moving series comments located on the wiki

We have series Comment for If magazine located on the wiki, I need to move them to their parent series If / Worlds of If , since they belong to the whole series. But how to do it? Maybe I should just change the wiki page address from

to / Worlds of If

And it will just automatically connect to the series?

If yes, how can go over all the wiki "/Series" pages and check that we didn't loose any such connections in the past when we changed series names? Regards, Qshadow 15:43, 6 April 2017 (UTC)

They need to go into the Notes field of the series basically. We had been doing that for the last few months - this is what the Wiki cleanup project is all about. The way you do it? Manually. You may want to read the Notes field help on acceptable formats and what's not. If you move them to a new page, someone will end up moving to the DB sooner or later anyway - so you may as well do it. If you are decide it is not something you want to do, please post back - I will move them next week when I am off my travels. Annie 20:57, 6 April 2017 (UTC)
I could do it, but I am not even sure if everything should be moved, eg "Essay Series" and "Acknowledgements" do we really move them to notes? I would move only the first section under "If" title. Qshadow 21:22, 6 April 2017 (UTC)
Not really. Look at what is now available/visible from the records themselves. If the information is findable there, no point adding as a note. So the table with the list of issues is not getting added for example - we now have the grid already in place. The different letters series and so on are also there - unless if you want to add a note such as: "The following series contain pieces from the magazines: and then add a list" or whatever you need to add. The acknoledgemnets I would add after {{BREAK}} just so we do not lose them (because the wiki page will be deleted. Annie 22:43, 6 April 2017 (UTC)
Thanks Annie. I did it, waiting for approval. BTw, the "notes" window is very small for such editing. Qshadow 01:01, 8 April 2017 (UTC)
Keep in mind that most modern browsers should let you resize Notes windows by dragging the lower right border. Ahasuerus 01:28, 8 April 2017 (UTC)
Oops, didn't notice that, thanks. Qshadow 22:49, 8 April 2017 (UTC)

Data Error found

Under Author Samantha Shannon:

The link embedded in the 4th Title listed The Pale Dreamer (2017) [SF] erroneously points to a page for The Bone Season: - this page has only one publication.

The Bone Season already has it's own page with many publications :

Cheers Graeme 00:52, 7 April 2017 (UTC)

This is not an error. This page points to the SHORTFICTION entry for "The Pale Dreamer", a short story that appears at the end of the NOVEL The Bone Season. It's a short story included at the end of a novel. Does that make sense? ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 01:19, 7 April 2017 (UTC)

book in two series

Is there any way to handle a book that belongs to two separate series because it is a crossover? --Vasha 02:03, 7 April 2017 (UTC)

Not at this time. There is a feature request to "allow titles to belong to more than one series at the same time", but it will be somewhat labor-intensive to implement. Ahasuerus 02:12, 7 April 2017 (UTC)
I also support this. Maybe that will bump it up the list a bit, if more people are interested in it. I wish I knew more so I could help with the actual coding. :) ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 04:21, 7 April 2017 (UTC)
I would rather see Translator support than multiple series support quite honestly. We do need both but if it gets to selection of labor intensive features... :) Vasha, the usual way this is handled is to add it to one series and add note in the other with a link to the work that cannot be added, its place in the series and any other relevant information. Annie 05:29, 7 April 2017 (UTC)

Data not displaying on author page

タンジェント (cover) should be showing up on the author page for 大森英樹, but it's not. Any idea why not? It appears on this page correctly. Is it because the pseudonym hasn't been approved yet? ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 20:57, 7 April 2017 (UTC)

It is showing. Annie 21:03, 7 April 2017 (UTC)
The variant is backwards (Japanese to English). See 1638716. -- JLaTondre (talk) 21:11, 7 April 2017 (UTC)
(after edit conflict) The submission to create the pseudonym relationship has been approved. However, the way this COVERART record is set up, the English version is the parent and the Japanese version is the variant. It will need to be flip-flopped if the title is to appear on the canonical author's page. Ahasuerus 21:13, 7 April 2017 (UTC)
Okay, I've submitted a removal of the incorrect variant. Once that's approved, I'll submit the correct variant. Thanks! ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 21:31, 7 April 2017 (UTC)
The submission has been approved and the two titles have been re-linked, so I think we should be all set. Ahasuerus 21:38, 7 April 2017 (UTC)
Thanks! ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 21:41, 7 April 2017 (UTC)

Titles that where removed from the database

I have found that these titles disappeared from our DB at some point in recent years, by the old DB (2011) each were nominated to the award in bracket:

Grant Morrison	Batman Gothic (World Fantasy)
Claire McNab	Lessons in Murder (Lambda)
Dolores Klaich	Heavy Gilt (Lambda)

So is it ok that they disappeared?

Regards, Qshadow 09:34, 10 April 2017 (UTC)

Batman Gothic is a comic book which was originally published in Legends of the Dark Knight 6-10. Lessons in Murder and Heavy Gilt are lesbian mysteries with no SF elements. They were originally added to the database because of their Lambda nominations, but the Lambda Awards cover a lot of genres and categories, not just SF. Ahasuerus 12:59, 10 April 2017 (UTC)
I see, thanks. Qshadow 20:29, 10 April 2017 (UTC)

Blanvalet/Blanvalet Fantasy

I see, that 120 publications are not in the publication series "Blanvalet Fantasy", but many of them are definitely fantasy! How can I recognize, whether a publication belongs to "Blanvalet Fantasy" or not? There are no notes in the books. Only a look to the title or the summary is helpful. We should change this errors.--Wolfram.winkler 08:17, 11 April 2017 (UTC)

Hi Wolfram. You should only add the "Blanvalet Fantasy" publication series to a publication if there's a data source which is stating that the publication really belongs to it (for example the book itself, the publisher's catalogue, Deutsche Nationalbibliothek or other SF databases; also, a hint can be if a publication series uses a specific cover design only used in that series). It can be difficult to find it out, and sometimes impossible. You wrote that many of them are "definitely fantasy", but that only says something about the genre, not about the publication series. In other words: just because it's a fantasy story doesn't mean that it automatically belongs to the "Blanvalet Fantasy" series.
Apart from that there can be other reasons why there's no publication series. One is that publishers make mistakes and sometimes simply forget to state that a book should belong to a series. Another is that series can be discontinued, for example Heyne's Science Fiction & Fantasy or Heyne's Allgemeine Reihe, and it might be correct that a book doesn't belong to such a series. If there's no data source then there's nothing we can do about this. Which means that there will always be some inconsistencies and possibly incomplete data. Jens Hitspacebar 19:34, 11 April 2017 (UTC)
Hello Jens, you are right with your explanation, but some publication e. g. with a 24000er number belong to "Blanvalet Fantasy" and other not. I mean, this is incorrect. But I hope, that the "Blanvalet Fantasy" publications and other series belong to the same number area. I want try to find out. An example you can see at sf-leuchtturm or sf-hefte--Wolfram.winkler 06:34, 12 April 2017 (UTC)

magazines that change to web-only

When an indexed magazine has (for example) had an online and ebook edition, but drops the ebook, is it usual to continue indexing it? Vasha 16:52, 15 April 2017 (UTC)

We do not usually continue indexing it if the online edition does not otherwise qualify for inclusion. --MartyD 09:57, 18 April 2017 (UTC)

Die Sternstunde des Science-fiction-Films

Hello, I made mistake by variant this essay, I don't know how. Can someone help me to fix it? Confused regards Henna 18:36, 16 April 2017 (UTC)

I've tried something. Can you have a look at the result? (I've supposed that the initial title was in russian in 1983). Hauck 07:36, 17 April 2017 (UTC)
Now it's correct. Thank you very much Henna 09:35, 17 April 2017 (UTC)

What type is 'Cloistered by Ravelled Bones and Ruined Walls'?

Cloistered by Ravelled Bones and Ruined Walls contains eight stories by one author and ten essays by another author. Should it be entered as a COLLECTION? Other relevant facts: there is no editor for the whole volume credited as far as I know; and each half of the volume has its own title (respectively "Beyond the Balcony: Eight Fictions" and "Vistas of Ruin and Decay: A Ruinenlust Journey Through Weird Fiction") but was never published separately. This last fact makes it not an OMNIBUS. And it hardly seems like an ANTHOLOGY because it doesn't contain fiction by more than one person. I'm confused. --Vasha 19:22, 19 April 2017 (UTC)

A problem with a submission.

I'm unsure of what I'm doing wrong. I've tried entering the latest Asimov's and I keep getting this: Error: Except when editing publications, the reference title should not be entered in the Content section. It will be added automatically at submission creation time. Just what does this mean? MLB 08:19, 28 April 2017 (UTC)

As I had no such problem adding a different magazine (c't), the only explanation I have at hand is that you may have tried to add an EDITOR, NOVEL or NONFICTION item, which may have led to such a note, because the system may have interpreted this as the content title. Still, it sounds somewhat buggy to me. Christian Stonecreek 10:33, 28 April 2017 (UTC)
A few additional submission integrity checks were added a few weeks ago to prevent title/publication mismatches. It looks like they may not be accounting properly for certain valid combinations, so I have disabled them for now. Could you please try again? Ahasuerus 12:43, 28 April 2017 (UTC)
Well, it's done now, will do the new Analog next. MLB 01:51, 29 April 2017 (UTC)
Did you by any chance add the complete novel the issue contains as a NOVEL and not as a SERIAL? (Not approved yet so cannot see it and just guessing). :) Annie 02:14, 29 April 2017 (UTC)

bad login

No matter what I do or how often I change my password I get a bad user login message. Is there a trick to this? I'd like to contribute but this is frustrating. BTW the user name is valid as I just got a new password which I changed as requested but I still cannot log in. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Mediawig (talkcontribs) .

Sorry to hear about the problem! The fact that you were able to post on the Wiki side suggests that your user name is active and the password is valid. What happens when you use the same user name and password on the database side? Ahasuerus 15:22, 29 April 2017 (UTC)

convolutions regarding multi-authored serial, republication, and individual stories thereof.

ok, i'm unfortunate enough to have stumbled on this: See also So, questions:

  1. Is this correct, in that it lists the two publication series as separate entities rather than each episode as one title with two publications? (except for those which got split into two in the second publication...)
  2. The individual stories seem to also appear as stand alone stories, and in my small sampling on isfdb aren't listed as variants of the serial episodes. my not very detailed look at which i currently have a copy of found no diffs from the second half of except for the use of numerals (2, 15) insread of spelled out numbers (two, fifteen).

So, any advice would be appreciated. thanks.--gzuckier 03:08, 8 May 2017 (UTC)

Tor Fantasy

Is Tor Fantasy a publisher or a publication series? A book to hand has Tor Fantasy only on the spine above the logo and bottom of the title page, again above the logo. The ® mark is next to the Tor, not fantasy. The copyright page has no mention of fantasy, but does have Tor with the ® mark. I'm thinking publication series. Doug H 18:11, 13 May 2017 (UTC)

I have always thought of it as a publication series. Ahasuerus 19:05, 13 May 2017 (UTC)

And what about Most of their publications (largely chapbooks) have them as a publisher/imprint, but we also have the Tor publication series A Original. --Vasha 18:11, 18 May 2017 (UTC)

My Changed Primary Verifications

When I first started updating isfdb (not that long ago) I was told that any changes, updates, deletions I made to a Verified record had to be notified to the talk page of all previous Verifiers. I've noticed from the new link My Changed Primary Verifications that updates have been made to records I have verified but have not been posted on my Talk Page. Is this a change in process? If I am only adding to an existing record do I have to tell all the Verifiers that I have done so?
One of the problems with the My Changed Primary Verifications page is it only states at high level what has been changed (e.g Notes). It is difficult to work out what has actually been changed. --AndyjMo 13:11, 18 May 2017 (UTC)

There was recently a huge cleanup of "bad" HTML that changed a lot of publications (in the thousand range IIRC). There is also a constant flow of cleaning-up of diverse mistakes, regularizations, technical adjustments (e.g. a pseudonymistic link reverted) that takes place everyday "behind the scenes" and where the PVs are usually not notified. Hauck 13:20, 18 May 2017 (UTC)
I corrected about 1,300 records during that cleanup, and I certainly didn't go to the trouble of informing all the PV's about those fairly technical changes. Chavey 03:25, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
It would be useful if the change records showed what actually changed (similar to when using a wiki). I suspect it would require some additional tweaking of the database to show this. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 16:55, 18 May 2017 (UTC)
That would be so very, very useful that I imagine there must be good reasons why it hasn't happened... --Vasha 17:05, 18 May 2017 (UTC)
The short answer is that there is a lot of complexity involved. We started work on a "history" system -- basically a log of changed data -- in 2007. However, we quickly ran into problems. I spent many man-hours trying to get it to work in the early 2010s, but eventually had to give up because the underlying approach was flawed. To quote what I wrote in January:
  • Re: "a snapshot of all OLD values". Unfortunately, it would require a significant effort. Granted, it would be easy to do for fields like "ISBN" and "Price". However, consider publishers. The way the database works, we store publisher numbers (1, 2, 3, etc) in publication records. Then, when we display a publication, we retrieve the name of the publisher, including its transliterated name(s), from other parts of the database and display them.
  • This works well when displaying current data. However, suppose we were to save a verified publication record as it existed prior to submission approval. We would store publisher ID 12345 in the saved record. Then, a few months later, publishers 12345 and 12346 are merged, so publisher 12345 no longer exists in the database. When the original verifier goes back to check this pub's history, there is no publisher 12345 to display. The same thing can happen to publication series, authors and titles. ... it can get even more complicated with authors and titles if we want to preserve the pseudonymous/VT/series relationships as they existed at the time.
  • The ultimate way to address this issue would be to build a snapshot of the then-current version of each about-to-be-changed Publication Web page and store it in a separate database location prior to submission approval. We could then have a list of snapshots for every publication and display them on demand.
  • ... checking the code, I see that it would be doable, although disk space may be a concern. Let's see. We have 784,600 Edit Pub submissions. Since 27.5% of our pubs have been verified, let's assume that 30% of Edit Pub submissions affected verified pubs. That's 235,000 submissions. Assuming 7Kb per verified publication (a mix of novels, collections, magazines and anthologies), that's 1.6Gb over a 10-year period. That's not really too bad and won't affect our disk space situation too much, at least not in the foreseeable future. So maybe it's doable after all. Ahasuerus 17:27, 10 January 2017 (UTC)
If there is sufficient demand for this functionality, we can create an FR and adjust the software development schedule. Ahasuerus
I think the snapshot idea is the best one. Basically, have it save what is displayed when a person submits a change. Exactly what appears on that page, before it's approved. It could possibly even just save the HTML for that page, giving it a unique ID and saving it as an HTML snippet that could be inserted into the framework of the site as it is (so it would still look the same). That would allow people to see that same page in the future if they wanted to view what changed. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 18:13, 18 May 2017 (UTC)
Yes, I expect that it will be the full HTML-based version of the Publication page. Minus the header, the navigation bar and the footer. Ahasuerus 18:27, 18 May 2017 (UTC)
I would suggest having an aging factor: any earlier snapshot is dropped from storage after, say, 1 year. Chavey 03:25, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
Instead of saving the whole HTML page why not create a snapshot of the field values as an XML (or an even smaller JSON) file? As for the IDs, they wouldn't be copied but the names associated with them (e.g. the publisher's name at the time the snapshot is taken). A history page could then be created by either simply displaying the snaphsot file's content as it is or by parsing its contents into a better readable view. That should be sufficient to find out about the changes made to a record. Advantage: saves lots of disk space. Moreover, comparing two snapshots would be a lot easier because there'd be no HTML noise around the data - and a simple diff view page should also be easy to implement. Jens Hitspacebar 09:33, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
Capturing just the displayed values (author names, titles, dates, publisher names, etc) would save some space at the cost of losing all links and adding a significant amount of complexity to the software. The software already builds the HTML that we display on publication pages, so it should be relatively easy to capture the built HTML and save it in the database. On the other hand, building a representation of the displayed data (which can be quite complex) in XML/JSON would require an extra effort. In addition, every time we change the structure of the data displayed on publication pages, we will have to make sure that the proposed "publication history" pages correctly display older versions of the page.
As far as the disk space aspect is concerned, an average magazine page like Astounding Science-Fiction, August 1939 is 13.9K in size. It compresses down to 2.7K. A simple verified publication like Dead to the World is 5.5Kb in size. Its compressed version is 1.3K. Assuming that 2K is the average, the increased disk space consumption will be around 50Mb/year, which shouldn't be an issue, especially if we don't include it in the public backups. Ahasuerus 14:46, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
I see your point. Structure changes do indeed add some complexity. I came up with the idea I posted above because I think it'd be good to be able to immediately see old and new values next to each other, like in the page which shows a submission, or to immediately see in another way what was changed. If a snapshot of almost the whole HTML is taken there's no immediate way to see what's been changed. For example, if a submission only corrected one letter because of a spelling error it will be hard to see this small difference between current page and the snapshot page. You'd have to additionally look at the submission record and find out which fields were changed. Which is ok of course, but just one extra step :) Would it be possible to visually highlight the changed parts in the snapshots with some CSS? For example, if the publication date was changed from 2017-06-01 to 2017-06-15, highlight the old value in the snapshot as 2017-06-01. Jens Hitspacebar 15:28, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
Python has a built-in library to extract and display differences between different files and fields. The library includes support for inter-line and intra-line change highlighting, but I haven't looked into the details. I am sure we can make it pretty as long as someone tells me what colors to use :-) Ahasuerus 16:25, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
Nice library. I like libraries :) I just tested the HtmlDiff class on two sample files in order to see how it works and its default settings already look sufficient to get a good diff view. Jens Hitspacebar 20:39, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
Red and green? The same ines we see after a submission? Annie 22:32, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
Yes. The default colours of the library are red for deletions, green for additions, and yellow for changes. Jens Hitspacebar 23:12, 20 May 2017 (UTC)

Rocket Stack Rank

I'm the co-editor of Rocket Stack Rank, an online fanzine that reviews short science fiction and fantasy. Since we're a finalist for the 2017 Hugo for Best Fanzine, it would seem that we meet the criteria in the Rules of Acquisition, even though we're online-only.

Is it okay for me to create such an entry myself despite the conflict of interest? If it helps, the site is completely non-monetized: there are no fees, no ads, no affiliate codes, and no pleas for donations. (This question was asked by Greg Hullender, 18 May 2017, 19:53.)

No problem with conflict of interest (we've got frequently self-published or aspiring authors entering their texts). If it's nominated, it's in, the main question is how to organize the data (e. g. an issue per month with one record per review?, one review for an anthology or one for each text?) and what is to be entered (should this be? lest we clutter the pages). Hauck 05:47, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
Thanks! Since we generate about 900 reviews per year, that might be a lot of content to add, although each review should be tied to an actual story in ISFDB. Also, we often have a review of a story before the story gets added to ISFDB, which could create some logistic issues. Does ISFDB even support the idea of per-story reviews for short stories rather than per-issue reviews for magazines? Greg Hullender
In fact you'll find that it's easier and more "precise" to create reviews for actual stories than for issues (as we link a review to a title and that for a lot of magazines issues are grouped by year at title level allowing thus only a "global" linking). Hauck 05:42, 26 May 2017 (UTC)

How to add a loose-leaf encyclopedia

I'm not sure how to add this german encyclopedia: "Bibliographisches Lexikon der utopisch-phantastischen Literatur" by Corian Verlag. This is a loose-leaf-encyclopedia of authors and their publications (in german) with as of now roughly 20.000 pages in 16 binders. It's still ongoing with quarterly additions/updates. It's a great source for information (and verification) for german publications. I can also recommend this as secondary verification source for german pubs/translations

Kingfisher's annotated fairy tales -- what are they?

I am currently entering the contents of T. Kingfisher's The Halcyon Fairy Book. Some of the contents are stories. But some are annotated Grimm's fairy tales -- here is an example. What should I enter them as? I think the annotations are the important thing about such a work, so is it ESSAY? --Vasha 18:05, 23 May 2017 (UTC)

I'd still think they are short fiction... :) Annie 20:46, 23 May 2017 (UTC)

Problem with entry in Japanese

My entry of the Japanese version of The Lost Oasis appeared with gibberish characters in place of the Japanese, although on the Edit This Publication page the text looks fine. I've put in a request to delete the pub, and I'll resubmit a new try at a later date. Any idea what went wrong, though?

That said, how does one submit a transliteration for any field other than the title--in this case the author? Previously I submitted a couple of clones of other Japanese books where I didn't add any new names, and they came through fine. Here I thought putting it in parentheses in the title field after the Japanese, and noting that in the Note to Moderator, might be the way to do it--but evidently not. MOHearn 20:29, 23 May 2017 (UTC)

For the transliterations - once your initial submission is approved and the new records created, you go to the author/publisher/whatever and add the transliteration there. You do the same if you are adding content to a publication - it is always a multi-step process.
For the Japanese characters - it looks fine to me actually. What browser you are using? Maybe you are defaulting on a weird character set? Annie 20:41, 23 May 2017 (UTC)
The Lost Oasis looks fine on my end as well. The title is "ロスト・オアシス', the author is "ケネス・ロブスン", etc. What kind of browser are you using? Ahasuerus 21:23, 23 May 2017 (UTC)
Now I see the field for adding a transliteration on the author page edit--I never thought to look that far when I didn't see it in the publication edit.
And I see on the Internet that this has happened to other users on Chrome, although trying Internet Explorer still got me ロスト・オアシス for the title on the publication page. I'll try to work this out when I have more WiFi time. Thanks! MOHearn 01:18, 24 May 2017 (UTC)
It's possible it's an Internet Explorer issue. Several versions of IE are known to have problems rendering Japanese. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 19:33, 24 May 2017 (UTC)

And after a couple of days, Chrome is rendering the Japanese just fine for me on the Publication Pages, as it had been doing before. I guess the only thing to do is cross my fingers... MOHearn 14:53, 25 May 2017 (UTC)

Series Num: omnibus scope in length field

We say at Help:Screen:NewPub#Series Num: "If you are entering data for an omnibus which contains multiple works in a series, see the note on the length field which allows information about an omnibus's series contents to be recorded."

Is this obsolete?

I visited the Mary Poppins series where the display "[O/1,2]", for instance, is generated by "1,2" in the content field evidently, and the length field is empty. --Pwendt|talk 18:29, 24 May 2017 (UTC)

Yeah. I wonder if it was supposed to actually say "see the note on the content field" instead. Annie 18:45, 24 May 2017 (UTC)
Fixed, thanks! Ahasuerus 19:15, 24 May 2017 (UTC)

Awards given to a person for group of work

Is there a help page for how to enter award records? I couldn't find it. Anyhow, my question is how to enter the William Atheling Jr Award for Criticism or Review. The ballot entries are of the form [Person], for [group of works]. E.g. "Kat Clay for essays and reviews in Weird Fiction Review" -- should that be entered as Title: Essays and reviews in Weird Fiction Review, Author: Kat Clay? --Vasha 16:41, 31 May 2017 (UTC)

Yes. Awards like this are entered as an "untitled award". If such an award was given for several publications of a series or the whole series I usually add a more detailed description about these publications/series in the NOTE field (example), or even add links to the records there. The help page is Help:Screen:EditAward. Jens Hitspacebar 18:54, 31 May 2017 (UTC)
I just saw that one question is not answered on the help page: if several or all works of a series got one award (or nomination), why not add a title-based award for each of these records (see example)? I think it should not be entered like that because one award was given, and not multiple ones for each work of the series. Moreover, the award page would falsely state that the author got more awards than he or she actually received. Some infos about such a case should be added to the help page. Jens Hitspacebar 19:13, 31 May 2017 (UTC)

How Do I Add Author's Other Books?

How can I add book titles to an author's page, that he has written, that are not currently listed? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Raypstark (talkcontribs) .

If they are published and if they are in scope for the DB (only speculative content is added except in some special cases), just use the appropriate "New" menu on the left (New Novel, New Collection and so on) and add a published book (which will include a publisher and so on). This will add the book to the author page :) Welcome! Here are some pages that you might find helpful:
I personally found Help:Getting Started very useful when I started here :) Annie 20:21, 12 June 2017 (UTC)

Adding pictures

Tried to upload a new, cleaner, less damaged image to replace this: Image:BSTOFSF1963.jpg Keep getting the old image. What's up with this and what am I doing wrong? I've used the "Upload New Cover" from the pub page and the upload link (which implies replacement) on the upload image page. Is there a third way 'round the barn that works?

d —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Dsorgen 15:09, 18 February 2017 (UTC) (talkcontribs) .

I am seeing the new picture. Are you sure you are not looking at a cached picture on your browser? After the update of the picture, you will always see the old one until you refresh your browser manually. Here is the history of the picture and I can see all your new uploads. Annie 17:02, 14 June 2017 (UTC)
If the picture above is the old picture, then I see the same picture, no difference.--Wolfram.winkler 15:53, 26 June 2017 (EDT)
It is the new one - at the time when this was posted, there was a different one in the history as well (plus 4 versions of this one). They had been deleted since and you can see in the history that the one from Dsorgen is now there (and his message was from June - I think I messed up the date when I added the unsigned above for him). Annie 16:53, 26 June 2017 (EDT)

Dracula - the play

I have a copy of Dracula, the play. There is an entry for this here and I wanted to check how to enter my copy. There are two titles available - Dracula: The Vampire Play and another referring to the illustrated edition. Mine is a Samuel French publication but clearly not the 1933 edition, although it shares the page count of 109. My copy has on the front cover: Dracula over Dramatized by Hamilton Deane and John L. Balderston. The title page has Dracula over The Vampire Play in Three Acts. This is followed by the copyright page and then a page with Copy of the original program of "DRACULA" as presented at the Fulton Theatre, New York City: over HORACE LIVERIGHT over Presents over "DRACULA" over The Vampire Play. After pages advertising a sound effect tape and the Description of Characters, the play is presented, but is simply titled DRACULA over ACT ONE. None of the existing publications have been verified.

These are chapter books. My publication should be titled "Dracula: The Vampire Play in Three Acts". My first instinct is that the contained story have the same name and be made a variant of the existing short story. However, the only reference I see to the title "Dracula: The Vampire Play" is on the reproduction of the program. The book appears, for the most part, to be a reproduction of an earlier edition(s) - slightly blurred text, some reproduced imperfections although pages differ, sometimes even in font. The copyright page has some additions in different fonts/clarity - copyrights from 1927 to 1960 and the ISBN and US printing credit. Is the play actually called Dracula and are all of the other publications wrong? Doug H 10:16, 22 June 2017 (EDT)

How about option 3 - it is called Dracula and noone got it wrong. :) Don't forget that in ISFDB the subtitles are a bit of an editor preference - some people include them, some do not. If I was entering your book, I would add it as a new chapbook and story and variant them under the existing ones. Up to you if you want to use Dracula or "Dracula: The Vampire Play in Three Acts" - both would be correct under the current rules. I would use the longer name just so it is clear it is a play - but that is just me. :) Annie 20:08, 22 June 2017 (EDT)
No, Annie, that's not what the rules say. At NewPub:Title:Subtitles it says "Subtitles. If the title has a subtitle, enter it, with a colon and a space used to separate the title from the subtitle... It is sometimes a judgement call as to whether a change of font or a colon indicates a subtitle or just some creative license on the part of the typesetter. If in doubt, take your best guess and document the guess in the publication's notes." So the only option we have is in deciding whether something is part of a title or is a subtitle, but if it's an obvious subtitle, we are supposed to include it as such. Chavey 21:41, 22 June 2017 (EDT)
Which leads to the editor deciding what is a subtitle and what is not. We do not add "A Novel" despite it showing a lot and looking as a subtitle way too often. This is similar to it - thus me saying that both would actually be ok in this case. Or are you saying that omitting it or adding it in this specific case will be wrong? Annie 22:03, 22 June 2017 (EDT)

There is something wrong

I tried to variant this preface to the author without an original entry. Can anybody help me to understand and fix this? Regards Henna 15:07, 1 July 2017 (EDT)

I changed the parent to German since that is the only language it is currently known to have been printed in. Other than that, I'm not seeing an issue. What is troubling you? If it can be identified as a translation, than the parent can be updated appropriately. The English version of that publication appears to have a English specific introduction though so it's possible the German one is specific also. -- JLaTondre (talk) 09:11, 2 July 2017 (EDT)
In the pub was displayed:
Vorwort des Autors (Blinde Weide, schlafende Frau) • (2006) • essay by 村上春樹 (trans. of Vorwort des Autors (Blinde Weide, schlafende Frau)) [as by Haruki Murakami]
Now everything is correct. The right language of the parent solve the problem. Thanks for your help. Regards Henna 14:38, 2 July 2017 (EDT)

Secondary verifications with mistakes

How do you mark secondary verifications if you are looking at the Worldcat record for an edition you have at hand and some detail doesn't agree with the book? Do you still mark Worldcat as verified? --Vasha 20:33, 3 July 2017 (EDT)

Yes, it is verified after all :) In the pub notes, you explain what the WorldCat record is giving and how it differs from a book at hand. You will be surprised how many of those there are around - from wrong years and publisher's names to weird names of the books (skipped words) or page numbers and contents. As long as you are sure that this is the book, if the record is wrong, we document it and move on. Annie 21:43, 3 July 2017 (EDT)

Data Base 8

Hello, I've seen a reference to this: 'The Whole Science Fiction Data Base 8' stating that it provides more detail about a specific book ( Can anyone please tell me what this 'Data Base 8' is and how to access it?

Thanks in advance! —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Voodoomailman (talkcontribs) .

I believe that the reference refers to this publication. I've sought copies on the web from time to time, but never been able to find a copy for sale. --Ron ~ RtraceTalk 22:40, 8 July 2017 (EDT)

Thank you Ron, much appreciated.

Illustrated Classic Editions

Moby Books / Playmore put out a set of abridged classics in the 70's and 80's. We currently have three publications. The Wizard of Oz (abridged) adds (abridged) to the title but only provides the abridger's name in the notes, The War of the Worlds (Abridged) adds (Abridged) to the title and does not credit the abridger in author or notes and The War of the Worlds leaves the title but credits the abridger in the author field as well as the notes. Only the second publication is verified. The NewPub notes suggest the third approach (no abridged, credit abridger as an author) is the correct approach. Two of the books credit Moby Books / Playmore and one Moby Books. I've several editions of most of the titles in the series and wanted to use the most appropriate approach for the title, author credit and publisher.

The title pages are formatted as: Title, by Author , adapted by Adaptor . The publication imprint has the stylized whale with MOBY BOOKS under it, followed by PLAYMORE, INC., Publishers, followed by Under arrangement with I. WALDMAN & SON, INC. My intention was to include a list of the entire series in the publisher notes but only update or add publications for titles already existing (e.g. Jules Verne titles, Conan Doyle's Sherlock - which exists under non-genre). Doug H 10:09, 25 July 2017 (EDT)

cover photo

This pub has a full page photo of the author on the back cover, and "Cover photo credit © Jerry Bauer." on the copyright page, so I'm thinking the photo referred to is that back cover photo? Does that seem reasonable? Thanks. gzuckier 22:06, 26 July 2017 (EDT)

What do you mean by "the photo referred to"? The photo referred to where? There's no reference to a photo at that page (other than the cover photo, which is visible. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 00:54, 27 July 2017 (EDT)
The photo referred to in his copyright page quote. -- JLaTondre (talk) 11:23, 27 July 2017 (EDT)
Ah, my brain was connecting his comment to the page he linked, and so I got confused. :) ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 13:57, 27 July 2017 (EDT)
Yes, I would assume that copyright page is referring to the author photo. The front cover looks like artwork & not a photo. -- JLaTondre (talk) 11:23, 27 July 2017 (EDT)
In such cases I google the names of the photographer and the name of the author together to see if the image will show up anywhere online. Although Jerry Bauer is a known name in authors photos so I would have assumed it automatically but for less known ones, that usually helps as well. And if I cannot find anything, I would record it in the notes exactly as it is in the book and add a ("presumably referring to the back cover author photo) or something like that. Annie 13:06, 27 July 2017 (EDT)

Missing </ul>

I've noticed that a number of my submissions have to be corrected by a Moderator because I have not included the /ul at the end of a list. I can understand making the mistake once (or even twice) but it seems to be happening more times than expected. I check the HTML before I submit the entry so (most of the times) I am sure that the /ul was there. The only thing that I can think of is that I sometimes remove the blank line after the /ul entry - so the /ul line does not end with a hard return. Could that be causing the whole line to 'disappear'? --AndyjMo 17:04, 28 July 2017 (EDT)

If you are willing to do a test, I am available at the moment so if you submit an update on any title (say in the moderator notes "test for Annie" or something like that, I can tell you what I get on the moderator screen? That would also help Ahasuerus with his troubleshooting. Annie 17:08, 28 July 2017 (EDT)
If you have a specific submission where you believe this happened, a moderator can dump the XML from it (I don't know if it works for a non-moderator). For example, . --MartyD 06:26, 29 July 2017 (EDT)
The suggested link says that I do not have moderator privilege. --AndyjMo 09:26, 29 July 2017 (EDT)
Here's the dump of the submission you have in the queue now:
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="iso-8859-1" ?>
 <Subject>Library of Souls</Subject>
 <Title>Library of Souls</Title>
 <Publisher>Quirk Books</Publisher>
<li>"Copyright © 2015 by Ransom Riggs"
<li>12th printing by number line [20 19 18 17 16 15 14 13 12]
<li>"Cover design by Doogie Horner"
<li>"Cover photograph courtesy of John Van Noate"
 <ModNote>Can you show this to Moderator Annie. I have raised a question about missing /ul where it is not terminated with a hard return</ModNote>
 <Author>Ransom Riggs</Author>
 <cTitle>Library of Souls</cTitle>
 <cAuthors>Ransom Riggs</cAuthors>
So the </ul> is there, at least on the way in. --MartyD 09:55, 29 July 2017 (EDT)
So if this is not the problem then it must be the early stages of dementia for me. --AndyjMo 10:07, 29 July 2017 (EDT)
I can't say if it has been on any of your submissions, but the common typo I run into in submissions, from time to time, is an open tag where a close tag is intended. For example, <ul> to close a list, <a> to close an anchor, and <i> or <b> to end italics/bold. Maybe it is something like that. Anyway, we will see what happens when Annie accepts the submission, but it certainly looks ok in the XML and in the review screen. --MartyD 11:23, 29 July 2017 (EDT)
It survived the acceptance. So we are not losing it in this case. If it was ul instead of /ul, my notes say so usually. Maybe deleted by mistake when you delete that last line before submission? Annie 12:03, 29 July 2017 (EDT)

Search wiki User space -- advanced?

Do we have a direct way to find all subpages of one page, such as my top user page User:Pwendt --that is all pagenames with prefix such as "User:Pwendt/"?

Do we have a search of content limited to pagenames with a particular prefix, such as "User:Pwendt/"?

--Pwendt|talk 18:53, 28 July 2017 (EDT)

Yes for the first one. No for the second (until we update the Mediawiki software).···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 18:58, 28 July 2017 (EDT)
For the second search, use a Google search like "Pwendt". Chavey 00:29, 29 July 2017 (EDT)
That works, too. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 02:07, 29 July 2017 (EDT)
Thank you both. --Pwendt

Adding New Translations

I have the English translation of a Dutch book. Neither of these titles are currently in the database. How do I go about adding the Dutch record as a Novel and then linking the English translation to it? --AndyjMo 10:53, 29 July 2017 (EDT)

Enter both books separately, as usual, this will give you two different titles (and different title IDs). Then variant the english title to the dutch one by passing the latter ID in the "Option 1" part of the "Make This Title a Variant Title or Pseudonymous Work" screen opened at the english title level. Hauck 11:01, 29 July 2017 (EDT)
I disagree on this one. If I do not have the Dutch book and cannot find one online to enter, I would just add my English one and once accepted, variant it to a new title (the second option). This way we do not end up with a unknown publication in the list and the title record is there to show the translation relationship. Either way will work though. I just really do not like adding publications that should exist but we have no source for them. Annie 12:11, 29 July 2017 (EDT)
Well, after some reflexion on his message, I've supposed that the two books are known to our contributor (he's got the english translation, check one, and speaks about a dutch book, check two). IMHO to multiply conflicting advices is not the best way to help contributors. To be more general, note that I'm personnally not fond of what I term "speculative" bibliography. Apart from some placeholders, my philosophy of entering data is simple: no book on hand, no record. Hauck 12:20, 29 July 2017 (EDT)
Ideally, we would have every publication primary-verified. Unfortunately, it's not always possible, which is why less than half of our publication records have been primary-verified. The percentage exceeds the 50% threshold for pubs published in the 1960s, 1970s and early 1980s, but can be as low as 10% or even 5% for recent and especially older books.
The way I see it, the big question when deciding whether to create a publication record based on secondary information is the reliability of the source. For example, and Amazon UK list a fair number of books published in other countries, but the quality of their non-English data is problematic, which is why Fixer doesn't submit them. On the other hand, we have tens of thousands of publication records which come from "recognized" secondary sources like DNB, BNF, the Library of Congress, OCLC, etc. And that's OK, but we have to be careful and approach each record on a case by case basis. There are many bare bones OCLC records which I wouldn't use to create an ISFDB record. Ahasuerus 13:59, 29 July 2017 (EDT)
If you have a title and author, I can probably enter the original Dutch edition. --Willem 14:35, 29 July 2017 (EDT)
The English book (which I have) is The King of the Copper Mountains by Paul Biegel. In the Copyright Page it states that it was first published in Holland under the title Het Sleutelkruid. I have attempted to create both titles but not sure if it is 'correct'. A quick Google has a description of the Dutch book; Publisher, date, ISBN and cover; should I update the record with this information? --AndyjMo 16:19, 29 July 2017 (EDT)
What you did was correct. I added publisher, pages, binding, cover and interior art from secondary sources, and corrected the publication date to 1964. Result is here. --Willem 04:15, 30 July 2017 (EDT)
By the way, there were at least 16 printings of this title in Dutch, this is of course the first edition. --Willem 04:18, 30 July 2017 (EDT)

Grimms' v Grimm's

I've just added Grimm's Fairy Tales and then I thought about it and decided that the title (on the front cover and title page) is really Grimms' Fairy Tales. If I edit the record I can change the Title but not the title of the Collection as it is greyed out. Do I have to clone my record, change the title and then delete the 'incorrect one'? Or is there an easier way? --AndyjMo 06:50, 2 August 2017 (EDT)

You can see from covers on some of the others that at least some appear indeed to be "Grimm's". So what you should do is unmerge your pub from the main title. To do that, go to the title page and click on "Unmerge Titles" from the Editing Tools list. Pick the pub(s) that should not be "Grimm's" and Unmerge. When that is accepted, each unmerged pub will have its own, unshared title record that you can edit to be "Grimms'" and then merge + variant as appropriate. --MartyD 08:14, 2 August 2017 (EDT)
I've 'unmerged' my publication. However I cannot see how to merge this record with the other "Grimms's" publications. I can't find a Merge option. Just not my day. --AndyjMo 11:20, 2 August 2017 (EDT)
It is not very obvious. You have two ways:
  • If they are from the same author and the author is not very prolific, go to the author page and select "Show All Titles". Then click the checkboxes of the ones you want to merge and click merge. If the author is too prolific, the two may not end up on the same page so option 2 needs to be followed instead.
  • If they have different authors or the author haa too many works, use the Advanced Search to find the titles in the same search result - then follow the same process.
Annie 18:48, 2 August 2017 (EDT)
That's more work than is necessary. Go to "Advanced Search". Under the Title Search enter Grimms' and then change the "is exactly" to "starts with". Check the appropriate titles, then merge them. While you're there, admire the "Grimms's Fairy Tales" entry :-) Chavey 01:49, 3 August 2017 (EDT)
Which is exactly the second option above so not sure where did you see more work :) While this works here, in some cases using the author page is faster. Annie 02:03, 3 August 2017 (EDT)

Title records without publication records

Is there a policy that requires a fiction title have a publication record? In the past it was determined that an eligible work may have been published in a non-eligible publication, thus making it necessary to create a record for a publess title. For example, a science fiction story published in Playboy. Are we now required to create a publication record for a non-eligible publication just in order to enter an eligible title in the database? Mhhutchins|talk 21:55, 2 August 2017 (EDT)

I don't think there have been any recent changes re: eligibility -- see this Wiki history page.
Having said that, there is a difference between publications being eligible and being required. Non-genre "dead tree" magazines like Playboy and Nature have always been eligible for inclusion, but they are not required. (And if we create a pub record, we only enter the SF content.) On the other hand, certain types of publications -- specifically "web-based publication (webzine) and available only as an HTML readable file" (with certain exceptions) -- are not eligible at all at this time.
There have been tentative proposals to revise this part of the Rules of Acquisition, but no action has been taken so far. For now we just add notes, e.g. see this title record, which illustrates the types of issues that Web-based publications raise. Ahasuerus 11:24, 3 August 2017 (EDT)
Last week, I added two stories at the request of their award-winning science fiction author. They only had online publications, so I didn't create pub records for them. But the notes clearly stated the website and publication date. Both records were deleted the next day by a moderator. I only know this because the author wrote me last night saying that the stories had been removed. What guarantee do I have that this won't happen again if I go to all of the trouble of adding the two stories back? Mhhutchins|talk 12:21, 3 August 2017 (EDT)
As long as there is a "permanent", downloadable version that isn't just HTML, it should be acceptable. This means a story posted only in HTML on a website is not eligible, but one that also includes a PDF version that can be downloaded is eligible. The same goes for online magazines: if there's a downloadable version (PDF, epub, etc.), it's eligible. So it comes down to what is meant by "They only had online publications". Was there a downloadable version (PDF, epub, etc.), or was it only "in print" in HTML format? ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 12:26, 3 August 2017 (EDT)
There is no "permanent, downloadable version". That's why I created a title record, and not a publication record. The publication itself is not eligible for the database. (I'm well aware of the rules, because I helped write them.) One of the stories was published on Interfictions, some "issues" of which have been recorded here. This is a web-based HTML-format-only publication. If these "issues" are eligible, and were accepted by a moderator for the database, why wouldn't a story published in the same manner not be? I would think the fact that it was written by a high-profile author would have kept the moderator from deleting it without question. Mhhutchins|talk 12:40, 3 August 2017 (EDT)
(edit conflict) Yup, I'm aware of how much work you've put into the various aspects of this site. I appreciate all the work, too. I also agree that the rules have been applied very inconsistently over the years (you only need to look in my user talk page history to see me regularly railing against how confusing it can be). I agree with you that if some stories have been accepted into the database from an HTML-only publication, that should open the door for all of them from that publication. As for why they were deleted, I don't know. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 13:10, 3 August 2017 (EDT)
Was there a comment where it is published? There is a report that identifies pub-less titles but it has an "ignore" button. So in such cases usually something will be ignored. Sounds like someone presumed it needs deletion by mistake or not understanding how the report works? I did not see a name of the story anyway - maybe look through the logs and see who deleted it and talk with that moderator? It can all be just an unfortunate mistake or oversight - but without an exact example, noone can look it up and verify. We went through deleting all the hanging ones from the last years a few weeks ago (short stories were not on the report) and it might have been deleted by mistake or because someone really thought it is a left over. Annie 15:26, 3 August 2017 (EDT)
Interfictions is (or rather was since it's now defunct) "a market which makes the author eligible for SFWA membership" as per this SFWA list, thus making its titles eligible for inclusion under the current rules. The only other exception for HTML-published titles is being nominated for a "major award"; being a high-profile author is not a recognized exception at this time.
As I mentioned earlier, I think that these rules no longer reflect where the field at large and the ISFDB are in 2017. For example, the use of SFWA qualifications may have made a certain amount of sense when the vast majority of our titles were in English, but we are well past that point now. Something to discuss on the Rules and Standards page. Ahasuerus 13:07, 3 August 2017 (EDT)
The "Excluded" section of the Rules of Acquisition currently states:
  • Works published in a web-based publication (webzine) and available only as an HTML readable file are not eligible for inclusion with the following exceptions:
    • It is published by a market which makes the author eligible for SFWA membership (listed here).
    • It has been shortlisted for a major award. (This last may include works which are self-published by an author on their own website. Otherwise such works are not eligible.)
Given the way the field has evolved over the last few years, I think it may be time to adjust the Rules of Acquisition to reflect the "new normal". For example, many authors post free "side stories" linked to their traditionally published series on their Web sites. The current policy doesn't allow their inclusion, which makes our bibliographies incomplete. However, it's a big can of worms and would be best discussed on the Rules and Standards page. Ahasuerus 12:38, 3 August 2017 (EDT)
I agree. It may be good to try the discussion again. Perhaps they could be acceptable if a web archive service was used to make a permanent record of the entry? ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 13:10, 3 August 2017 (EDT)
I would make the argument that even if it is "html only", there are a lot of tools these days to create e-book versions of one type or another. I have the Kindle plugin on my browser - which strips everything out and leaves just the story in a nice e-book versions that Kindle can recognize. So... how is that different from the author/publisher doing the same beforehand and uploading the ebook as well? We need that whole section discussed and overhauled.
Back to the original question: If it is in a non-genre printed publication, I prefer to add the publication. It is partially so it is easier to answer questions such as "how many stories are in Playboy" and partially because it makes it clearer when you look at the list (as opposed to a note). But that is just me. Annie 12:40, 3 August 2017 (EDT)

"Beyond The Burning Time" by Kathryn Lasky

Not sure if this book is sf genre; haven't read it so I don't know if there's any "real" witchcraft in it or is it just fictionalized history? Thanks. gzuckier 00:49, 4 August 2017 (EDT)

According to Publishers Weekly (per the listing), there's a ghost in the story, so it probably squeaks by as fantasy. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 01:50, 4 August 2017 (EDT)

Joke pseudonyms

What's the standard practice around here for articles that are signed with a jokey obvious pseudonym and don't have the actual author's name on them? Do we make a record for that pseudonym (with a note, I suppose) or put uncredited? In either case, I presume, we'd variant to the actual author and state in a title note how we know who that is.

For an actual example, Mad Scientist Journal begins every issue with a "Letter from the Guest Editor" written in the persona of a mad scientist and signed by such names as "Dr. Felicity Kitten-Franks" or "Sd'th'tigñhöa39." I've been creating author records for all of those. And not varianting them because I don't know exactly who wrote them (one or both of the magazine's editors, perhaps?) I suppose it does no harm to have those sort of author records in the database. --Vasha 05:45, 4 August 2017 (EDT)

It seems that our strategies vary, some are left "as is" and others are varianted to unknown. Either way, the "uncredited" option is IMHO not the correct one. Hauck 06:39, 4 August 2017 (EDT)

Grimms' Fairy Tales

What seemed to be a simple task has turned into something much more complicated. First I changed the title from 'Grimm's Fairy Tales' to 'Grimms' Fairy Tales' to match the title of the book. I then merged all 'Grimms' Fairy Tales' into a group here. It now seems to have "acquired" a Variant Title which is just a link back to the same title. Also I want to add the whole group to "The Brothers Grimm' Fairy Tales" as a series but my new group has the Series field greyed out. Help please. --AndyjMo 10:57, 4 August 2017 (EDT)

Try it now. Hauck 11:10, 4 August 2017 (EDT)
So what did I do wrong? --AndyjMo 12:05, 4 August 2017 (EDT)
The precise way to obtain a self-variant is sometimes unclear (submissions in the wrong order or approved in the wrong order). To break it you've just have to enter "0" while using the "Make this title a variant title" link. As the title was officially a variant, the series field was logically greyed, when the varianting was broken, the field was now open to editing. Hauck 13:02, 4 August 2017 (EDT)

Page Count

I was under the impression that the Page Count field represented the total number of pages in the publication. If the book contains an excerpt then the page count also includes the number of pages in the excerpt. In this record Kitty and the Dead Man's Hand the page count is given as 282 whereas the actual book length (including the except is 301). Normally I would query the Verifier but the Notes say which we do not include in the page count. Shouldn't the Page Count be recorded as 301 - or am I just pick nitting? --AndyjMo 16:31, 6 August 2017 (EDT)

If the excerpt pages are numbered (which they often are not), they go in the main page count. If not, I've generally seen them entered as "282+19", with a note explaining the details. If there are Roman numeral pages at the beginning, then it would be something like "xvii+282+19". ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 01:03, 7 August 2017 (EDT)
The current rules in NewPub Help says "For books, the general rule is to use the last printed page number, with exceptions explained below." The exceptions below specify "Likewise, you MAY record the count of unnumbered pages at the end of a publication. For example, 320+[4]. As before, only do this if there is additional content in these pages that requires the creation of a content record, as when there is an afterword or book excerpt which appears on unnumbered pages." (Emphasis on "MAY" is mine.) That particular sentence, which implies that a "book excerpt" would require the creation of a content record was added to the documentation on Aug. 26, 2014. Prior to that time, editors differed substantially in whether or not they wanted to include such book excerpts. The content rules specify that one should never include advertising, and several editors view such excerpts as advertising. (Actual fiction usually has a conclusion.) The last discussion of that point is available here. As you can verify, the discussion (as often happens) did not reach any consensus. Nevertheless, that change was added to our documentation without any further discussion, without agreement from the editors, and without a change being entered into the Rules and Standards Changelog. As such, I feel that gives me the right to exercise the word "MAY", and choose not to include such extracts. (WorldCat, for example, does not include such extracts.) As a compromise, and to include all information, I do always include the excerpt in the publication notes, as you indicated above. Chavey 00:32, 8 August 2017 (EDT)
Yes, never include advertising. And use the square brackets. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 01:04, 8 August 2017 (EDT)

SFBC Numbers/Dates

Is there any way to determine the publication date from a Science Fiction Book Club number? (i.e. the number usually printed on the back cover of the book's jacket, such as '06615'). Thanks! —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Voodoomailman (talkcontribs) . 11:52, 12 August 2017 (EDT)

There is a way to decipher pre-1988 Gutter codes, but their numeric codes are not so simple. As the wiki states elsewhere:
  • Starting in 1968, a four-digit number was printed on the back inside flap of the dustjacket, which book dealers and collectors use as a de facto catalog number, although there has never been an official statement as to the meaning of this number. In the beginning these numbers were assigned in roughly numerical order, but over the years became somewhat random. Also, some reprints of pre-1968 titles may have been retro-assigned catalog numbers. This number is not printed in the book itself, but appears only on the dust jacket. Without the "Book Club Edition" slug line on the inside flap of the dustjacket (discontinued in 1988), this number has become, along with the lack of a printed price, one of the last true identifiers for book club editions.
  • The four-digit identifying number was moved from the flap to the back of the dustjacket at the end of 1980. By the mid-1980s four-digit numbers were exhausted and numbers with five digits began to appear. Some titles that had previously been assigned four-digit numbers were reprinted with a "0" prefixed to the original number. Five-digit numbers were used until May 2004, when a new seven-digit numbering system began. (There are some printings which have both a five-digit number and a seven-digit number without any apparent connection between the two.)
  • The seven-digit numbering system, which assigns the numbers in a rough numerical order, started in the 115nnnn range, and as of December 2012 has reached the 136nnnn range.
So the fact that your number contains 5 digits indicates that the book was most likely published between the mid-1980s and May 2004. Ahasuerus 13:47, 13 August 2017 (EDT)

Sirius magazine covers

Hello! I just finished entering all Sirius magazines into db. I still didn't identified some authors of cover pages. Here's the link: Sirius.

Take a look and maybe you'll recognize some of them.

Thank you! Debolestis 06:42, 13 August 2017 (EDT)

Thanks to you for this great job. Hauck 07:08, 13 August 2017 (EDT)
Thank you for all the help, I have some other SF magazines and books from ex Yugoslavia, I'll upload everything into db as soon as possible. Debolestis 05:47, 15 August 2017 (EDT)

Transliterated Title for Ampersand?

I'm holding this edit which aside from correcting capitalization is using the transliterated title to repeat the title with an ampersand (&) with the word "and". I think that the ampersand is part of the Latin character set which would make the entry of a transliterated title unnecessary. However, if the purpose of the transliterated title is really as an alternate title for search purposes, then the edit is good, though the name of the field and help page are misleading. In any case, is this an appropriate use for the transliterated fields? --Ron ~ RtraceTalk 17:56, 16 August 2017 (EDT)

Let me repeat a suggestion I made (with no responses) on this thread of 25 April: "I think, maybe, it would be good to have a separate field for alternate titles -- this would not be displayed in mouseover, or visible to users, but it would be used for variants that might be searched for. This would be useful not only for allowing people to pull up Vonarburg's L'œil de la nuit whether they search for "oeil" or "œil", but could also be used for titles that have ampersands in them (who can remember whether to search for "and" or "&"?) and so much more." --Vasha 18:06, 16 August 2017 (EDT)
It might be easier and more effective to create a table of equivalents that is used when performing searches. It could list the examples you gave as well as other common (and perhaps not so common) ones. That would catch all instances rather than just those that have it entered. It might be good to invite Ahasuerus to this thread. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 18:55, 16 August 2017 (EDT)
Vasha's idea has been muted a few times. It's similar to what many library catalogs do -- see "Varying Form of Title" in the MARC21 standard. From the technical standpoint, it's doable although moderately labor-intensive.
As far as Nihonjoe's proposal goes, I don't think it has been suggested before. It looks promising, but we'll need to consider the implications. For example, consider the essay "There and There and There and There and There and There and Back Again". Should the search logic look for every permutation of "and" and "&"? And what about this deliberately over the top title?
Also, our title searches already take longer than any other types of regular searches (up to 1-2 seconds.) Making them more complex will make them even slower. Which isn't to say that we shouldn't do something about this issue, but we'll need to be cognizant of the possible side effects. Ahasuerus 19:33, 16 August 2017 (EDT)
Nihonjoe's version is superior in general if it's technically possible. It would take the pressure off of standardizing punctuation; although we might still want standardization for aesthetic reasons, at least we we wouldn't have the problem of searches not being able to find a title with an em dash in it if someone entered it as two hyphens or space-hyphen-space.
The only remaining issue is a few odd titles like this one: "How Can I Help Hurt You?" Since the strikethrough cannot be displayed in the title, it is there as "How Can I Hurt You?" with "How Can I Help Hurt You?" in the transliteration field in case anyone searches for it. But there probably aren't enough like that to worry about. --Vasha 19:53, 16 August 2017 (EDT)
The database that we are using has "full text search" capabilities, which we haven't experimented with yet. We can check them out to see how well they work for our purposes in terms of functionality, disk space and performance. Ahasuerus 20:32, 16 August 2017 (EDT)
I suppose that would allow something like having the option in preferences to ignore punctuation when searching. Useful, though that still doesn't help with œ and so on. --Vasha 21:09, 16 August 2017 (EDT)
It's been a few days since anyone has chimed in. The consensus seems to be that there are better ways to handle this than using the transliterated title field. I'm going to reject the original submission. Thanks. --Ron ~ RtraceTalk 19:34, 21 August 2017 (EDT)

Jules Verne - English translations of A Journey to the Center of the Earth.

I am somewhat befuddled regarding translations for publications and titles.

There are multiple publications but the two examples I have to hand are this and this. Both are publications of this title. The title claims that the translation / translator are undetermined. However, the translation for these two pubs is determined - notably under this title. Note that the latter title provides the translation of the first paragraph. It matches both my publications. I figured I need simply move the publications to the second title via an unmerge and re-merge.

Alas, there is a difference - the spelling of Center in these publications and Centre in the one above. So would that mean that I should unmerge our publications, and merge them together, but not under the title with Centre, and copy the title description with the notes regarding translation to the new title? There are five verified publications I might be able to fix as I own one printing from each publisher, and there is a sixth verified by another publisher with whom I might check. The remaining publications would necessarily have to remain under the existing title as undetermined translations.

I can think of no way to tie together the translations under the two different titles. The notes for the original title here list the translations, but you have to go into the each translation to determine whether they provide the translated first paragraph or not, and need to keep checking multiple translated titles to find a match to the publication in hand. Would it be reasonable to put the translated paragraphs in the title notes or would it make them too long? Not all the translated titles correspond to the notes (for example the 1961 translation). If the translations / titles can be clearly identified, then the extraneous ones could be cleaned up by assigning their underlying publications to the correct title/translation. Doug H 22:51, 20 August 2017 (EDT)

A title record is defined -- or "distinguished from other title records", if you will -- by the following:
  • The name(s) of the author(s)
  • The work's title
  • Text (ignoring minor differences)
  • Translation (if applicable)
If 2 works differ in one (or more) of the listed areas, they are entered as two different title records. In this case, the difference between "Center" and "Centre" is enough to create two separate title records. The only supported way to indicate that they contain the same translation is to add a note. Ahasuerus 15:46, 21 August 2017 (EDT)

Ancient Greek vs. Modern Greek

I entered a 1909 edition of Homer's Odyssey, in Greek. I've only entered the transliterated title, because I don't know how to handle the actual Greek. (Help 1: Anyone want to do that for me?) My real question though is whether this book is in Ancient Greek (as two WorldCat OCLC entries claim) or whether it's in Modern Greek (as three WorldCat OCLC entries claim). It looks like modern Greek to me, but I really don't know the differences. If you do, could you look at the text and see if I entered it correctly? Here's an image of the first page of the text. Thanks, Chavey 13:58, 23 August 2017 (EDT)

Got the titles fixed :) Need a few minutes to check the text for the language. Annie 14:09, 23 August 2017 (EDT)
And language adjusted - it is Ancient Greek - here is the text in Ancient Greek and here is the modern one. Annie 14:15, 23 August 2017 (EDT)

Self-Knowledge belong in database?

Does the book Self-knowledge by Michael William Bennett belong in the database? It is Bennett's only work and is about the philosophy of consciousness. Thanks, Doug / Vornoff 16:08, 25 August 2017 (EDT)

Works of speculative science and philosophy are generally outside the scope unless they have been fictionalized. Ahasuerus 16:37, 25 August 2017 (EDT)
Thanks. I'll submit a deletion. Doug / Vornoff 19:02, 25 August 2017 (EDT)

obnoxious question

so, would the Aeneid be a novel, or a poem? thanks. gzuckier 23:59, 25 August 2017 (EDT)

The discussion has been moved to the Rules and Standards page to improve its visibility. Ahasuerus 21:15, 26 August 2017 (EDT)

Checking LCCNs

With the provision of External IDs there is quite a lot of activity in the addition of these fields. I have noticed that quite a few LCCNs do not match the actual edition of the publication. They do match the title but most of the time they are for the hardcover edition only. The LCCN is printed in the Copyright page but it looks as though it is just copied through by the publisher from the Copyright page of the hardcover edition. There are other cases where the LCCN on the copyright page is no longer on the LoC website.

It is impossible to check if a LCCN is inappropriate without first accessing the Library of Congress website, so just copying the LCCN from the Notes to the External ID field does not ensure that the LCCN is valid. I agree that it would require a lot of effort from the Moderators to check each LCCN as it is added. When I add a new LCCN I check if it is still valid, if it is not then I put it in the Notes and state that is either not valid or refers to another edition. I don't think there is much anyone can do except request that when LCCNs are added to the External ID field they should be first checked for validity. --AndyjMo 11:21, 29 August 2017 (EDT)

I would recommend using linking templates in Notes. For example, "The copyright page mentions {{LCCN|88-3456}}, but that Library of Congress record is for the hardcover edition" or "Not to be confused with {{OCLC|1234567}}." Ahasuerus 12:20, 29 August 2017 (EDT)
Is it right to use the LCCN for Publications at all? Shouldn't we use the LCCN only for Title records of Titles published in the USA? It looks to me like the first Publication of a given Title in the USA gets a LCCN, and that all subsequent Publications of that Title published in the USA get the same LCCN. Correct me if I'm wrong.--Dirk P Broer 05:28, 1 September 2017 (EDT)
Alternatively we can restrict the use of the LCCN to the first Publication of a Title in the USA.--Dirk P Broer 05:30, 1 September 2017 (EDT)
Different editions are assigned different LCCNs. For example, the first (1963) edition of L. Sprague de Camp's The Ancient Engineers is LCCN 62015901 while the 1970 reprint is LCCN 76095278. Ahasuerus 09:48, 4 September 2017 (EDT)
De Camp provides also examples for my argument The Goblin Tower 1983 (questionable) LCCN for 1989 edition, The Unbeheaded King - hardcover LCCN for a paperback.--Dirk P Broer 06:00, 5 September 2017 (EDT)
LCCNs are a great illustration of the famous observation "In theory, there is no difference between practice and theory. In practice, there is" -)
In theory, LCCNs are associated with individual editions/publications rather than titles. And, of course, the LCCNs printed in books are supposed to match what's in the catalog of the Library of Congress. In practice, however, there can be discrepancies between what is printed on paper and what is recorded in the catalog. Moreover, sometimes subsequent reprints include the LCCN of the original edition even though it no longer applies.
Nonetheless, even though these exceptions are frequent and confusing, it's not true that "all subsequent Publications of that Title published in the USA get the same LCCN". For example, the LCCN of the first edition of The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress is 66015582 while the LCCN of the Tor reprint is 95053750. Stranger in a strange land: 61011702, 90038572, 2010497341, 2016034455. Men Like Gods: 2016018746, 98809681, 23002806, etc. It would make it impossible to associate LCCNs with titles rather than publications. Ahasuerus 10:49, 5 September 2017 (EDT)
I started this thread so I think I should contribute. If I find an LCCN on a copyright page I first check to see what the LoC record says. If it matches the edition (I usually just check the ISBN) then I add it to the External ID field. If the LoC record exists but is for another edition I check if the LoC has any other records for this title. If it does then I add the 'correct' LCCN to the record but put a note in the Notes to indicate the difference. If LoC has only one record for the title then I add the LCCN to the External ID field and put a note to indicate what the LCCN relates to. If the LCCN does not exist in the LoC database I put a Note to indicate this but I do not put the 'invalid' LCCN in the External Id field. --AndyjMo 12:23, 5 September 2017 (EDT)
Looks like a perfect way of dealing with the LCCN# to me.--Dirk P Broer 18:42, 5 September 2017 (EDT)

changed primary verifications

So... I've paid no attention to changed primary verifications up to now, but got curious; I see that in the vast majority, the material in the Proposed Changes and Current columns appears to be identical? whazzupwithdat? thanks. gzuckier 01:26, 30 August 2017 (EDT)

I don't know exactly but likely that indicate movements of external links (OCLC etc.) to the newly established field. Stonecreek 03:39, 30 August 2017 (EDT)
There is no snapshot of the values from before the change. So when you look at the link from your changed verifications, you see the same content on both sides - a moderator had accepted the change so it is now in the db. This is why notifications on the talk pages still need to be done. However for small changes look for a notes at the bottom of the page - some people are nice enough to explain there what they are changing so it is easier to spot. Annie 07:03, 30 August 2017 (EDT)
What Annie wrote. There's currently no way to store a snapshot of the "before", so once something is approved, they will appear identical. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 13:03, 30 August 2017 (EDT)
There is a similar thread 67 My Changed Primary Verifications above which started in May of this year. There was talk of showing the before and after changes. --AndyjMo 13:47, 30 August 2017 (EDT)
I think there's a feature request in to make it so there's a snapshot of before the change was approved. It has not been implemented yet. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 14:32, 30 August 2017 (EDT)
It's part of Roadmap 2017. I should add that the Roadmap implementation has been delayed a bit due to the "Amazon emergency" 2 months ago and to the unexpected security issues that have turned out to be a huge can of worms. In addition, development always slows down in July-September because publishers put out so much stuff in the fall that Fixer has trouble keeping up. Ahasuerus 20:56, 31 August 2017 (EDT)

boxed set merge with omnibus? with thanks. gzuckier 02:28, 30 August 2017 (EDT)

I deleted the boxed set, as there wasn't any sign at amazon that this got in fact published (instead there were the four separate volumes as a bundle). Thanks, Stonecreek 03:37, 30 August 2017 (EDT)

Contents of a non-fiction

I've added this publication under an existing title and added several essays as contents. The publication refers to the title record as a title reference. Do I also include the title as contents? Doug H 00:05, 31 August 2017 (EDT)

It is there in the list of contents when you edit but because it is the reference title, it does not show up in the content properly. Look at the content. The non-fiction is already there. However, when the content shows up on the page, it is not shown in the contents because the software understands that this is the book itself. Think of how a collection is shown -- this is the same (the non-fiction type is on the same level as collection).Annie 18:02, 31 August 2017 (EDT)
That's right. Reference titles are displayed on the "Title Reference" line in the metadata section of the Publication page.
Come to think of it, the "Title Reference" line doesn't display the same kind of VT/pseudonym/series information that Contents titles display. Perhaps it should. Ahasuerus 20:29, 31 August 2017 (EDT)
I'd love it if it does - so I do not need to go all the way inside to get to the parent :) Annie 20:32, 31 August 2017 (EDT)
I'd love to see this too. Albinoflea 11:10, 1 September 2017 (EDT)
Makes sense. We already had an FR (FR 366 to display parent titles on the "Title Reference" line. I have expanded the FR to make the "Title Reference" line behave just like Contents lines behave. Ahasuerus 21:02, 31 August 2017 (EDT)
So for a CHAPBOOK, I have to include the story separately from the book, even though they have the same name. And for COLLECTION, the title record is there, but if there's a story by the same name, I include it separately (because it's a SHORTFICTION - with its own title). But for a NONFICTION, the content is implied by the Title Reference and the content is not displayed with the other content for the publication, even though it is the real content of the book? Doug H 23:48, 31 August 2017 (EDT)
Yes. The same way you do not add a second novel record when adding a novel. If a non-fiction contains essays, it is like a collection - the book itself does not show up in the listed content. If it does not contain essays, it is like almost all novels - no content, the reference title is the only title inside of the publication. Think of chapbooks as collections with one story. For collections we do not enforce adding the content because if we are using secondary sources, we may not know it. For chapbooks we know what the content is - so we add it. We need a separate record between stories and chapbooks so that we do not end up with chapbooks inside of collections and at the same time if you look at a story, you can see all chapbooks and collections. Hope that helped. Annie 02:34, 1 September 2017 (EDT)
But for a novel, if there's additional content, the novel shows up on the list of content. For example here. There is the novel, then an author's note and preview of next book. As well as the title in the title reference. Doug H 10:31, 1 September 2017 (EDT)
That's a good point... novels do get their own visible-while-editing content reference, which I see mostly used as a way of adding page numbers. I wonder if NOVEL records are the outlier here, or if the NONFICTION works differently because NONFICTION is currently forbidden at the content level? Albinoflea 11:10, 1 September 2017 (EDT)
Collections do not show up in the contents list either. Non-fiction is the mixed type - it is a container (like an omnibus) but it may not have content. However, it is a good point that we may want to assign a page number to the non-fiction record itself (as we do with novels). Ahasuerus? Thoughts? Annie 13:53, 1 September 2017 (EDT)
(after edit content) The reasoning behind the current display logic is as follows.
We have two types of titles: regular titles and "container" titles. Regular title types are NOVEL, SHORTFICTION, POEM, ESSAY, SERIAL, COVERART and INTERIORART. They contain textual or visual (in the case of COVERART and INTERIORART titles) information. The rule of thumb that I usually use is that if you can scan a title and make it available electronically (as ASCII, PDF, etc), it's a regular title.
Container title types are COLLECTION, ANTHOLOGY, EDITOR, OMNIBUS, and CHAPBOOK. They do not contain textual or visual information. You can't scan them since there is nothing to scan. Their purpose in life is to be "reference titles" for publications. Without them, there would be no easy way to display anthologies, collections, magazines, etc on Author Summary and Series pages.
NOVELs are something of an outlier because they are both regular titles and reference titles for NOVEL publications. This is the reason why we don't display then in the Contents section unless there is a page number to display. (OMNIBUS and MAGAZINE publications which contain anthologies or collections are also somewhat special, but don't cause too much trouble.)
NONFICTION publications straddle the "regular/container" fence. Some NONFICTION publications are monographs, which makes them regular titles. You can scan their reference (NONFICTION) title and present it as a text file. On the other hand, some NONFICTION publications contain essays, which makes their NONFICTION title a container title -- there is nothing to scan.
It's this dual nature of NONFICTION publications that makes displaying their Contents sections tricky. There is a Feature request to create a new title type to support what the FR calls "non-fiction anthologies", but we'll need to think about the ramifications. Hope this makes some sense. Ahasuerus 14:10, 1 September 2017 (EDT)
It certainly explains why it's not obvious. If CHAPBOOK is a container for a SHORTFICTION, would NONFICTION not be a container for an ESSAY? (logically speaking, making the software behave so is a different story (or essay) Doug H 16:11, 1 September 2017 (EDT)
If a non-fiction book is an anthology of essays, then yes, it's a container. But if it's a monograph, i.e. contains just one long work (plus an optional foreword, afterword, etc), then it's not really a container. Thus the previously FR to split this title/publication type in 2 separate title types, one for containers and one for monographs.
Unfortunately, implementing this FR would raise certain other issues. For example, how would we handle non-fiction books whose contents was unknown? Ahasuerus 22:18, 2 September 2017 (EDT)
What happens from time to time is that a (short) monograph gets reprinted in another book. Then the need may arise for a container ESSAY in the initial monography. Stonecreek 14:11, 4 September 2017 (EDT)
Perhaps a way to deal with the problem is to have NONFICTION be exclusively the functional equivalent of NOVEL -- 40000+ words, single-work "book". To handle collected works of non-fiction, how about a "non-fiction" flag on ANTHOLOGY/COLLECTION/OMNIBUS? --MartyD 21:37, 4 September 2017 (EDT)

pseudonym question

Can someone help me to make this to a pseudonym of this author? Thanks Henna 15:56, 31 August 2017 (EDT)

Why would you want the pseudonym to be the more often used one? I would think that "Chris Schlicht" will be the canonical name and Christine Schlicht the pseudonym? Remember that canonical name does not need to the the real name - it needs to be the most used name. So here is how the process will look like:
  • Go to the page you want to make a pseudonym and click on Make/Remove a Pseudonym. In the newly opened page, in the first box (Parent Record #:) add the ID of the canonical record 216741 or alternatively using the name, copy the name in the second box. You need just one of them.
  • For EACH work on the pseudonym page, click on "Make This Title a Variant Title or Pseudonymous Work" from the Edit box when you open the title and inside of it, scroll down to the bottom of the page and replace the pseudonym with the canonical name. This will make the title visible on the full name page. This is why you want most used to be the one that is the canonical :)
You can submit all requests in parallel. If you insist on having the relationship the way you indicated above, you will also need to move all the user's details to the other page. Which as I said is not how we deal with author names. If you are expecting to be adding a lot of titles under the other name, then up to you -- but then you will need to submit the second step for each of the titles.
So do you want to try? Annie 18:18, 31 August 2017 (EDT)
Hello Annie, thank you very much for your explanations. With your help and a look at H. G. Wells author page everything is clear. I will try to make the pseudonym. Thanks again Henna 13:52, 1 September 2017 (EDT)

Gutter Code for Quality Paperback Book Club

Can anyone please point me to any information about Quality Paperback Book Club gutter codes? Trying to decipher these two: 'HB4AA' and 'HB 1 BB'. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Voodoomailman (talkcontribs) .

what was this "Amazon emergency" of which you speak?

Just curious. thanks. gzuckier 22:47, 31 August 2017 (EDT)

Our hard-working robot, Fixer, uses a number of Web APIs to create publication records for forthcoming (and certain missing) books. Amazon's APIs are the primary source of information at this time. When Amazon changed the requirements for using their APIs in late June, it started a chain of events which consumed dozens of hours of my time. Things are mostly back to normal now, but there are still some unresolved issues with UK records, which slow everything down. Ahasuerus 12:20, 1 September 2017 (EDT)

Missing number line

I have a copy of Susan Cooper's "Over Sea, Under Stone", the first book in "The Dark is Rising" Series. Our pub notes says the first printing has a full number line: "A B C D E F G H I J K". This is consistent with all the later printings for sale through Abebooks. But my copy has NO number line! It's got all the rest of the first printing markers: Stated "First American edition, 1966"; a $3.50 price that's the same as the "regular" first printing; just no number line. It seems unlikely to be a printing from *after* the "K" printing, because of the price (and because Abebooks knows of no printing after the "IJK" one). But I can't figure out what it might be. An "alternate version" of the 1st printing? A pre-publication printing? It's signed by the author and inscribed "with love" to the recipients, and the only other signed copies where Abebooks specifies what she said are both "best wishes", so I can imagine that this was some sort of test printing given to the author, which she gave to some close friends. But I have no idea if publishers did that sort of thing in the 60s. Any suggestions on this mystery? Chavey

Brian Lumley: Latter Day Lovecraftian

Maybe someone can help me with this. There is a title in Dark Horizons #14 Summer 1976 which is "Brian Lumley: Latter Day Lovecraftian" by Michael Barrett and David Sutton which is a parent title of "Brian Lumley: Latter Day Lovecraftian" by Michael Barrett and David A. Sutton. There is also the same essay (from FantasyMagsIndex) (dated later) in Nyctalops #13 titled "Latter Day Lovecraftian" by Michael Barrett and David Sutton which is a parent title to "Latter Day Lovecraftian" by Michael Barrett and David A. Sutton. These four titles can be seen here. I'm confused - what do I do to fix this? If I had to totally guess, I'd say break the variant in the second title, variant the child title (the one appearing in Nyctalops) there to the parent title in the first title. Then merge the parent (now publess I think) title in the second one to the parent of the first title to get rid of it. If not, please help so I can try to understand this process better. Thanks. Doug / Vornoff 23:29, 3 September 2017 (EDT)

Since you're sure they're the same essay, the procedure you described is perfect, yes. --Vasha 00:16, 5 September 2017 (EDT)
Thank you, Vasha, that helps me out a lot. Doug / Vornoff 01:33, 5 September 2017 (EDT)

Including nongenre titles in partial contents

Let me get this straight... Nongenre anthologies should only have their speculative contents listed. But what if they contain a story that is nongenre but in the database because of its author or whatever? Am I right in thinking that that story should be listed too, so that all publications of all stories in the database are catalogued? If so, I am thinking of adding the following note to the publication: "Only speculative content has been listed here, along with non-speculative stories by genre authors." --Vasha 23:17, 4 September 2017 (EDT)

Let's consider the following scenario. A non-genre story has been published in a genre magazine. We list its appearance in the magazine since we generally try to make our magazine records complete. So far so good. However, this particular story happens to be a very popular one, so it also shows up in many non-genre anthologies, some of which contain SF. Should we go back and add this story to all of the affected non-genre anthologies? Ahasuerus 16:22, 5 September 2017 (EDT)
If it's already listed in the database, I don't see any reason to not include it in any other anthologies we also catalogue. If it's not already in the database, I don't think it should be added as its own entry, but should instead be listed in the notes. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 19:33, 5 September 2017 (EDT)
From an ease-of-usability and ease-of-readability standpoint, it'd be nice to have a hard-and-fast rule like "only speculative contents in non-genre publications."
Let's look at it philosophically: this database exists to catalog genre fiction and genre publications; a non-genre story in a non-genre anthology is neither. So maybe what's needed is a principle that non-genre stories are only catalogued when they appear in a genre context because of the publication they're in. --Vasha 20:00, 5 September 2017 (EDT)
But we do, don't we? If you are not above threshold, your non-genre does not have space here. If it is in a magazine, we add it but we do not follow it down to the next publications. Annie 20:02, 5 September 2017 (EDT)
Great! Where is that written in guidelines? --Vasha 20:17, 5 September 2017 (EDT)
Rules of Acquisition? The only reason to ever be in that situation is when a genre magazine has the story - and that is only because we try to have complete listing of magazines and fanzines. Once the story is marked non-genre, it is ineligible in general except for the above threshold authors - so it does not get added to non-EDITOR items. As I said below - reading the rules in any other way causes way too many issues with consistency and with ensuring what this DB is about. Annie 20:29, 5 September 2017 (EDT)
Firstly, I don't see anything in the rules of acquisition which formalizes the principle that all contents of genre magazines are listed; that should be spelled out if it isn't already. It conflicts with paragraph 2 of the "Excluded" section, which simply says to omit non-genre by below-the-threshold authors, no exceptions.
Secondly, the rules of acquisition say to exclude "Works unrelated to speculative fiction that are found in primarily non-genre publication that will be cataloged based on other criteria." (Note that editing for typos is needed in that sentence.) This might mean that non-genre anthologies should not include any non-genre stories even if they are by above-the-threshold authors... but maybe not? Does being by a genre author count as being "related to speculative fiction? The sentence should be reworded to remove that ambiguity, whichever way we decide to interpet it.
(and resolving conflict here) But that will be inconsistent. I am adding "Collection 1" and I skip 3 titles because they are non-genre. A genre magazine 10 years later decides that they love this story so they add it even though it is out of scope. At this point it enters the DB. Who will be responsible to check ALL collections, anthologies and omnibuses we have in the DB to see if that story needs to be added there by any chance? It does not matter if we have it or not - if it is non-genre and the author is not over the threshold , it should be only in the notes. Otherwise we open the door for a major inconsistencies and a lot of confused contributors. We are not trying to create bibliography for non-genre stories - if they are not fully connected, I am not worried - we have the story because of a magazine. This inconsistency (the same one Ahasuerus is mentioning) will undermine the idea. We either add all non-genre stories or only the one from above the threshold authors. Anything else will end in incompleteness and misunderstandings. And someone may take that to an extreme - if we have the story, does it not make eligible ANY collection that contains it - how do you explain not having them when you have the ones where you have one SF story and our poor example story? Annie 20:00, 5 September 2017 (EDT)
I have felt we are too zealous in excluding non-genre works from anthologies/collections. I guess I'm in Vasha's "fiction" and "publication" camp. Setting aside the gray area where a publication contains both a lot of genre/"in" material and a lot of non-genre/"out" material, it seems to me most publications are either genre/in or non-genre/out at some sort of base level. IMO, any publication whose base state is "in" should be fully catalogued. If a publication's base state is "out", then it should be granted special inclusion dispensation if it contains one or more works that are considered "in", and in that case only the "in" contents should be catalogued. --MartyD 22:21, 6 September 2017 (EDT)
That sounds like a very good principle to me. But it conflicts with the principle that there should not be non-genre works on an author's page unless the author is above-the-threshold. Which one would you rather have yield to the other? (I find I am having trouble deciding that myself.) Vasha 05:45, 9 September 2017 (EDT)
I don't agree that there is any such principle. The amorphous "certain threshold" is but one factor. If a work we did not consider spec-fic, by an author below the threshold, were nominated for one of the awards we care about, it would be "in" regardless of the nature of the work and the author's portfolio. IMO, why shouldn't appearance in a "genre" publication be any different from an award nomination? FWIW, I also think the rules of acquisition imply that all works in genre publications are expected to be catalogued. Consider:
3. Works unrelated to speculative fiction that are found in primarily non-genre publication that will be cataloged based on other criteria...
Why would this specific exclusion be needed if all works in "in" publications weren't normally "in"? Unfortunately, the rules of acquisition don't treat publications and works separately and seem to carry some implicit assumptions about publications. --MartyD 10:24, 9 September 2017 (EDT)

(unindent) Clarifying again, here are the definitions I'm using: a piece of fiction can be speculative or not; a published work (novel, anthology, magazine) can be genre or not, which depends as much on context as content. So then, the questions we need to clear up (hopefully writing the clarification into the Rules of Acquisition), is which non-speculative pieces of fiction to include in (a) the database, and (b) in the listed contents of various published works.

The first thing to decide is how to treat genre works (anthologies, magazines). As MartyD eloquently argued, one possibility is to include all their contents. That gives us a database full of fiction that has appeared in a genre context, some of it non-speculative and marked as such with a flag. Another possibility is to entirely exclude non-speculative fiction unless it's by a significant author, and when it appears in a genre work, have it listed in notes but not as a title in the contents. (I thought this was the current status quo, but I'm beginning to think I was mistaken.)

It's only after we've decided this that we can talk about how to treat non-genre anthologies. --Vasha 18:48, 9 September 2017 (EDT)

Incorrect names

I was verifying The Best of Trek #9 and two author names appear to be entered incorrectly: Sarah Shaper should be Sarah Schaper and Harvey H. Greenberg should be Harvey R. Greenberg. Both of these names are listed as I indicated both in the TOC and on the essays. How can these be fixed? --TracyPoff 18:08, 5 September 2017 (EDT)

You should write a message to Bluesman who verified those editions before-- he'll either dig out his copies and see what's in them or tell you to go ahead and change the record. Checking would be good because maybe the names are printed differently in the other edition than the one you have. --Vasha 18:32, 5 September 2017 (EDT)
Thank you! --TracyPoff 20:03, 5 September 2017 (EDT)

How to Verify

Please forgive me if I am being blind. I have an original edition of a publication (The 1953 Sidgwick and Jackson edition of Heinlein's The Man Who Sold the Moon). So I would like to provide a primary verification to the publication record. I tried to follow the instructions at [3], which says there will be a "Verify this Pub" link in the navigation bar on the left. However, I don't see a Verify link on the publication record at [4] or the edit page at [5].

Many thanks for any help you may provide! —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Main (talkcontribs) .

Go to the publication record. Under "Editing Tools" on the left side, there is a "Verify This Pub" link (last entry in that section). Also, it is helpful to sign your posts. You can either type --~~~~ or use the signature button above the wiki text entry box. Thanks for participating! -- JLaTondre (talk) 19:01, 5 September 2017 (EDT)

Thank you. I found it. I was on the wrong page! Main 20:43, 5 September 2017 (EDT)

delete a file

can somebody delete Image:20170904 150238.jpg for me? uploaded and forget to rename. thanks. gzuckier 23:51, 5 September 2017 (EDT)

Done. Annie 01:22, 6 September 2017 (EDT)
thanks. gzuckier 21:00, 6 September 2017 (EDT)

is the alchemist genre?

"science-oriented police thriller" ... "a greedy young university scientist, devoted to making new analog drugs whose elements imitate the effects of illicit drugs but are themselves legal compounds". i kinf of guess it is?? thanks.gzuckier 21:04, 6 September 2017 (EDT)

No, if not any CSI-derived product should be included. Hauck 02:54, 7 September 2017 (EDT)
As per Policy, "Speculative fiction is defined to exclude ... Techno-thriller, political thriller and satire works set in a future indistinguishable from the present". I think slightly different drugs count as "indistinguishable from the present", so the work is outside the scope of the project. Ahasuerus 09:09, 7 September 2017 (EDT)
OK, makes sense. thanks. gzuckier 14:38, 7 September 2017 (EDT)

Formatting Nonfiction Reviews in Magazines

I'm supposed to enter all contents of a science fiction review magazine that includes reviews of fiction, scholarship, and books on sf art and film. I'm terribly rusty after a few years away; to reacclimate, I am proofreading old issues entered a few years ago and am using them as guides. I am stuck on this issue at Can someone take a look? Note that the entries on p. 18 and p. 20 are reviews of art books and are entered as regular reviews. But the entries on p. 22 and p. 23, reviews of John Carpenter films, are entered as essays and flagged as "Review of the nonfiction work" and then the title. The next two entries are reviews of books about Cronenberg films and Planet of the Apes films, yet these entries are listed as regular reviews again. What's the difference between these two types of entries--regular reviews and essays flagged as "Review of the nonfiction work"? Are some of these entries incorrect? Arch 03:51, 10 September 2017 (EDT)

Well, we nowadays tend to include art books (by 'genre' artists, that is), but not necessarily books on movies or other non-fiction about items that don't belong into the field of speculative literature. In this case, the two review essays are on books that aren't listed in our database, whereas the latter items mentioned in your question are (so that they can actually be linked to the entries). I hope that helps. Stonecreek 06:28, 10 September 2017 (EDT)
Okay--Bear with me if you don't mind. I have a few more questions so that I can establish patterns and protocols. First, are you saying that since the artwork in question accompanies genre fiction (and is commissioned BECAUSE of the fiction), we can justify treating art books as within the genre--that is, as long as the book itself has an ISFDB entry? Second, when I am entering reviews, should I be cross-checking every book (whether art book or fiction or film or scholarship) to make sure it DOES have its own entry in IFSDB? (Or cross-checking everything but fiction? Or...?) Thank you. I'm grateful for any help I can get. Arch 15:52, 10 September 2017 (EDT)
Reviews of works eligible for entry in the ISFDB should be entered as reviews. Reviews of works not eligible for entry in the ISFDB should be entered as essays. In the vast majority of cases, this is clear cut (see our inclusion policy). In borderline cases, it usually comes down to the person entering the review. If there is disagreement between editors, discussion resolves it. You don't have to check that every review you enter has a corresponding entry, but once approved, if the review doesn't auto-link to the appropriate title, it is expected that the editor fix it (assuming the approving moderator doesn't first). Sometimes this means correcting the review. Sometimes it means entering the reviewed title as we're missing it (assuming it was eligible for inclusion or otherwise it should have been entered as an essay). Hope that helps. -- JLaTondre (talk) 17:03, 10 September 2017 (EDT)

The Ancestors story lengths

The individual novellas in The Ancestors don't have the length ntered but they're greyed out because they're listed in a few pubs, I assume. Any way to fix? thanks. gzuckier 00:24, 12 September 2017 (EDT)

You have to click on the titles of the individual stories and edit those. That will change it for all publications in which they are listed. For example, Ev'ry Shut Eye Ain't Sleep would be edited here. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 02:42, 12 September 2017 (EDT)
ok thanks gzuckier 14:43, 12 September 2017 (EDT)

mystery nights mystery

the entry for the anthology mystery nights seems confused. it cites not only an essay that isn't actually in the printing as far as i could see, but also 2 other anthologies as contents? my instinct is to delete the three, which have their own entries which look ok, but just wanted to make sure nobody else sees something i'm missing. thanks. gzuckier 20:55, 12 September 2017 (EDT)


entry seems to be a truncated version of or can somebody delete please? thanks. gzuckier 21:15, 13 September 2017 (EDT)

Done. You are able to submit a pub for deletion via the "Delete This Pub" link under Editing Tools on the pub page. Thanks. -- JLaTondre (talk) 23:11, 13 September 2017 (EDT)

James E. Gunn

When all is said and done, after I entered the contents of the September-October issue of Asimov's I got this and this. What did I do wrong, and how do I fix it? MLB 23:45, 13 September 2017 (EDT)

Not sure how you got there, but since they are duplicate records with no contents, you have two solutions:
  1. Merge them with their duplicates: On the respective title pages, use "Check for Duplicate Titles" which will show the duplicate entries & allow you to merge them.
  2. Delete them: On the respective title pages, use "Delete This Title" which will allow you to delete them.
-- JLaTondre (talk) 16:31, 14 September 2017 (EDT)

Amazon availablility vs. publication date

This book is apparently already on sale and available at Amazon. However, both the preview of the copyright page and the publisher's website state "first edition 2018." Do you think it is really being shipped now? And even if it is, should we put the official publication date in the title record here? --Vasha 16:10, 21 September 2017 (EDT)

Book beats Amazon. We probably should add a note that it actually came out earlier but if a date (year) is printed in the book, I'd go with that. Annie 18:41, 21 September 2017 (EDT)
Fixer has encountered a number of scenarios over the years. For example, it may be a case of delayed publication combined with Amazon failing to update their records. If you attempt to buy a delayed book from Amazon, you may get an e-mail which will say something like "The book has been ordered and is expected to arrive within 2 months". Unfortunately, it's not easy to tell why Amazon's data is out of sync with the publisher's online information -- either side's data may be out of date. Ahasuerus 19:20, 21 September 2017 (EDT)
True that. But in this case the book seems to have been planned for 2018, printed as a 2018 book and just made available earlier (by design or by mistake). In such cases, I still think that our date should be the one from the book (this will be what will determine award eligibility as well I think and down the road, the fact that it had been available earlier will be just a footnote) and add a note that in reality, it was available earlier. Annie 19:37, 21 September 2017 (EDT)
I agree with Annie: we don't know what's actually going on at Amazon, but the date provided by the publisher is a solid fact that provides a point of reference for us to cite. --Vasha 20:15, 21 September 2017 (EDT)
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