ISFDB:Help desk/archives/archive 09


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This archive includes discussions from June - August 2009.

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dating / numbering interpretation on library edition

I've got a Scribner's library edition of Heinlein's Red Planet (actually Red Planet: A Colonial Boy on Mars), illustrated by Clifford Geary. The only explicit date is the 1949 copyright. But the copyright page has this cryptic code where a line number or pub date might be:


Does anyone know what that means? I'm sort of wondering if it is "Library, April 1966, fifth printing". Or perhaps it means something else entirely or is pure gibberish. Thanks. --MartyD 15:03, 14 June 2009 (UTC)

The Library of Congress Classification system assigns the letter "L" to "Education" (warning - a PDF file). Since Red Planet was a juvenile, I suppose it could be seen as "educational material", although the LOC catalog entry puts the first edition under "science fiction" (PZ7.H368 Re). Ahasuerus 15:39, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
It's a Scribner's code. The first letter is the printing # with A being 1st, 4.66 is the month and year of printing. I'm pretty sure "[V]" is for the Juvenile series. This coding was used from 1929 to 1973. Often times for the "A" printings they copyright page also had a seal. A quick scan finds these for Red Planet: 1st A, 8th H-6.59[V], 10th J-?-62[V], 12th L-4.66[V], 13th M-7.67[V], 15th 0-1.72(V). Prior to 1929 and for a long time after this the title page had the printing date. After 1973 they used a number line. --Marc Kupper|talk 01:31, 15 June 2009 (UTC)
Someone certainly earned his bibliography merit badge. Thank you! --MartyD 01:49, 15 June 2009 (UTC)

Advanced search and multiple pages of results

When I do an Advanced Search with multiple criteria and there are more than 2 pages of results, it appears to drop all but the last criterion after the 2nd page. For instance, if I search by Title_type = 'NOVEL' and Year = '1966', on page 3 (200-299) it will start showing other title types than Novel but will retain the 1966 criterion. If I use Title_type = 'NOVEL', Year = '1966', Title_type = 'NOVEL' (again), on the third page it will start showing other years than 1966 but will continue filtering on Novel. The first two pages of search results appear to use all the criteria. Thanks. —The preceding unsigned comment added by Connelly (talkcontribs) 11:03, 16 June 2009

There are known to be several bugs in the Advanced search logic, i am afraid. I have encountered this error also. As you can see on Development, work on advanced search is already planned. Bug 1836458 deals with the "AND NOT" search, which does not currently work. This may be an instance of Bug 2797518. Bug 2797544 also deals with advanced search.
Ah! I have now found Bug 2799421 - Adv. Search with multiple parameters: param ignored on p. 3 which seems to be exactly what you are reporting. It appears that User:Roglo is working on this, see Development#Roglo.
I fear that i can't think of a good workaround for this until code fixes have been made, but at least fixes seem to be in progress. You can see the current bug list if you wish.
I hope this is helpful. -DES Talk 16:21, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Oh by the way, please sign discussion page msges (like this one) with four tildes (~~~~). The software will convert it into a link to your user page with your User ID displayed (or your custom signature, if you set one in your wiki preferences) plus a timestamp. Thank you. -DES Talk 16:24, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Yup, a known bug. Roglo has coded a fix for it, but it's linked to another, more problematic fix, so it probably won't be installed this week. Ahasuerus 16:39, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

query from an amateur who hasn't a clue how to edit ISFDB

How do I make a very simple bibliographic correction? -- to wit, that the book Perceptualistics (referred here: is by John Grant !1949-) ( and not by the John Grant who did the cover for New Moon ( —The preceding unsigned comment added by Realthog (talkcontribs) 19:17, 19 June 2009

It isn't hard, once you know how, You have to make two changes. First go to the TITLE record, click "Title data" (which really should say "Edit title data" and soon will). On the form, in the "Author:" field, change "John Grant" to "John Grant (1949-)". (make any other needed changes too.) Then click "submit data". Then you need to go to the PUBLICATION record, click "Edit This Pub" and make the same change, and again click "Submit data". See Help:How to update a publication and Help:Screen:EditTitle for more details.
Once the info is correct and your edits have been approved, you may want to verify the book -- mark that you ahve checked the record and it is correct.. See Help:How to verify data.
I hope this helps. -DES Talk 00:34, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
Oh and please remember to sign your discussion page postings, like this one, with four tildes (~~~~). The software will convert them into your User ID and a timestamp -- or you can set a signature in your Preferences. -DES Talk 00:37, 20 June 2009 (UTC)

Overlapping Title Records

179655 and 969849 are both for the collection The Draco Tavern, and should be merged. However, the publication THDRCTVRNZ2006 appears to belong to both titles, and a merge attempt gets the big yellow warning msg. Remind me on how this is best handled, please.

By the way, we should remind our verifiers that checking for and merging duplicates is highly desirable. One of the publications of this collection seems to have been entered and verified without merging the many dups created. -DES Talk 14:44, 20 June 2009 (UTC)

The problem here is that this Collection Publication contains two The Draco Tavern Collection Titles. Since Collection pubs are considered "containers", our software hides any Titles whose type matches that of the Publication (something that we may want to consider changing, but that's a different story.) The easiest way to see all the Titles in a container Publication is to change the pub to a Novel or some other non-container type. I have just turned it into a Novel and now you can see that these Titles. Interestingly enough, one of the Collection Titles has a page number, 15, associated with it, so I wonder if it may be a short (2 pages?) Essay or Short Story rather than a Collection. Something to ask the verifier, I assume. Ahasuerus 15:50, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
Thank you. Now I think i see. One of the collection titles had been entered as an ANTHOLOGY -- I thought it was just a typo and had changed it while I was doing the various merges of content records in this collection. I'll now bet it was entered on the initial line that defaults to ANTHOLOGY type -- I used to assume that I was supposed to make an entry for the overall pub on that line, and quite probably so did some other editor. I have changed the entry on page 15 to an essay so it doesn't cause a problem for now, and will leave a note on the verifier's page. -DES Talk 16:23, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
The good news is that the ANTHOLOGY default was changed to SHORTFICTION in patch r2009-04, which was installed 2 minutes ago :) Ahasuerus 16:25, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
And if you like that, we can sort out some other defaults - e.g. NOVEL contents might be a better default for a new Omnibus than SHORTFICTION? That will need a new feature though, 2803759 has been closed. And not just yet, I want that module for the Chapterbook fix(es). BLongley 21:28, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
Sure, NOVELs for OMNIBUSes and ESSAYs for NONFICTION is probably our best bet. I will create a new Feature request, thanks! Ahasuerus 23:25, 20 June 2009 (UTC)
Feature request 2809620 has been created. Ahasuerus 01:48, 21 June 2009 (UTC)
Thanks again. -DES Talk 01:57, 21 June 2009 (UTC)
Changes for 2809620 have been submitted for testing. BLongley 20:06, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

Deleting images

As a result of copy&paste and multi-tab-browing I uploaded an image file twice (once with the wrong file name). Can somebody please remove this one. Is there an official procedure for deleting uploaded files (like mark for deletion)? Thanks. -- Phileas 13:00, 23 June 2009 (UTC)

Done. We don't get enough deletes for a formal procedure to be needed. Ask here or at the zmoderator's noticeboard -- any mod can delete images (and other wiki pages). -DES Talk 13:08, 23 June 2009 (UTC)

Painter != author?

Hi. As I understand the guidelines, painters and illustrators aren't credited as authors. I'm about to enter this pub. But most catalogues list the painter as an author (often with a note): example. The proper way to enter this would be using Clarke as author and adding note to give Bonestell credit as painter, right? Thanks. --Phileas 19:44, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

If I were entering this book, both Clarke and Bonestell would be entered as authors, with an additional credit for Bonestell for INTERIORART. This is based on the OCLC record which makes it appear to be an artbook with text by Clarke, instead of a book by Clarke that just happens to be illustrated by Bonestell. The cover even credits Bonestell first. (Even books [1] [2] [3] in which Clarke provided the idea or at the most a plot outline, give him a larger credit than the actual author!)
Those guidelines you refer to are incorrect if they say not to credit the artist for a nonfiction artbook. (Admittedly, there's much in the guidelines I've never read.) MHHutchins 20:06, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Not to forget the Rama sequels. ;)
The guidelines don't have to be wrong - I'm sure it's just me misunderstanding it. I throught that part There is currently no support in the ISFDB for translators, or photographers; this information should just be entered in the notes field. (from Help:Screen:EditPub#Author) would apply in this case.
I'm glad you'd enter him as author, because according to instinct I would too. --Phileas 20:32, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
(after edit conflict) Not so fast. In the normal case, where an artist (such as a painter) simply illustrates a boook, the artist is given an art credit (coverart or interiorart or both). In the case of most "art books" the artist also wrote the text, or much of it, and so is clearly also the "author". Here assuming that the text is by Clarke, and the art by Bonestell, what Bonestell really is, in addition to the illustrator, is the subject, IMO. A recently written and published work on The Art of DaVinci, with reproductions of many of DaVinci's paintings, would not be credited to Leonardo DaVinci as a coauthor. For example, see Federico Barocci : allure and devotion in late Renaissance painting; Barocci is not listed as an author.
A suggestion has been made recently that we add an optional "subject" field for books about an author, including critical studies. If we had such a feature, this would IMO be a good case for using it. But we don't, at least not yet.
I would be inclined, if I were entering this, to credit Clarke as the author, and Bonestell as the illustrator, with a note indicating how much of the book is his art. Note that OCLC often credits illustrators at the top of the record as co-authors in books that are not art books but have an illustrator credit on the title or copyright page; it is only when you get to the "responsibility" section, as here, that actual contributor roles are spelled out (N.B. "Responsibility" often lists the form of the author's name form the title page, while the top of the record gives OCLC's canonical form). I take "author" to mean "the person who wrote the text".
However, i don't know of anything in the help pages that even purports to deal with this case, and i just looked. I don't think specific help for this situation, or for "art books" in general, has been written yet. (The only mention of art books i could find was that they were still TPs if not HCs, in spite of their extra-large sizes.)
By the way, no one said "not to credit the artist for a nonfiction artbook" the question is whether to credit the artist as author when the artist apparently did not write the text, but did create the art, or whether to credit the artist as illustrator instead. -DES Talk 20:51, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
I've always found the rule clear: "take the name from the title page". So I do, but it is a bit flexible. ;-) For instance, The Josh Kirby Poster Book clearly has the name "Josh Kirby" on the title page. Only as part of the title, mind you, but there's no author credit otherwise and it would be silly to make it "uncredited". (Actually, checking my copy, it does have the name "Terry Pratchett" on it as well, but that's only because Terry scribbled his name on it with a "p.p. Josh Kirby" - the unadulterated version wouldn't have any author credit). BLongley 21:50, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
I bend the rules a bit, I guess, but I'm always happy to allow an SF artist to be a co-author on a book dedicated to his or her work. I see we have Boris Vallejo and Julie Bell: The Ultimate Illustrations on our front page at the moment: even if there's another person with an Editor credit on the title page I wouldn't remove Boris and Julie, it's obviously their book. Reflections: The Art of Stephen Bradbury would be another example. Single-artist SF art-books aren't a huge problem here, I think we can bend the rules, especially when "title-page", "title-page!", "'title-page!!" can be refuted with "Er - it doesn't say anything about the authors on the title-page". BLongley 21:50, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
For Boris Vallejo and Julie Bell: The Ultimate Illustrations, Worldcat says "Responsibility: Boris Vallejo & Julie Bell; text by Anthony Palumbo." so it seems to me that Palumbo is at least a co-author. Before this discussion i would probably have made him sole author. But if we want to establish the principle that, for us, the artist whose work is the subject of an "art book" is the co-author, I don't object. Shall we insert a passage into the help to clarify this? -DES Talk 22:03, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
I find parts of this discussion quite incredulous. I can't imagine a case where an "art book" devoted exclusively to the work of one artist, where the artist would not be credited as the author. I'm not talking about a biography or a textbook discussing techniques, but a book that simply reproduces the art work with an introduction, and perhaps captions or other accompanying text. In the case Phileas brings up, it's clear that Bonestell is the author of the book. If the rules declare that Palumbo would be the only author of the book that DES cites, then the rules should be changed. MHHutchins 22:33, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
So far as I know, there are no "rules" in the ISFDB help that specify any such outcome, beyond the general rule "credit the author as listed on the title page". I gave it as my personal view that the author is the author of the text, but I do see that the case where the vast majority of the space is devoted to the art is an extreme one. I suppose that you are thinking of the case where pretty much every page was a plate, with some caption text. What would you say to the case where roughly every other page is a painting, with the facing page describing the history of the creation and publication of the art? i can recall a book about Norman Rockwell that followed this format. What about a book where roughly 1 page in 3 or 4 is art, the rest being text about the art -- The Fantastic Art of M. C. Esher follows this pattern, and enough of it has been used in SF that perhaps it should be IN. How much of the book must be devoted to the art for the artist to be the (or an) author? Does it matter if the artist is long dead before the text is written and the book is published? Note also that I suggested adding a passage to the help to explicitly confirm that the artist should be considered as an (if not the) author in such cases -- I am not trying to rob Bonestell or any other artist of credit, merely trying to better define how we will handle such cases in general. -DES Talk 22:56, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
I think that if I were a user looking for Bonestell's collected art, I would expect to find it under Non-fiction rather under Interior Art even if there was a fair amount of additional text in the book. If we agree that this is the preferred way to handle this class of cases, we may need to update Help to clarify the data entry rules. Ahasuerus 00:48, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
A case or two in point. I was tempted to add the artists as authors of both of these. Both have a substantial amount of text but a picture is worth at least a thousand words.--swfritter 01:26, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
I don't know if it's been suggested before, but imo this calls for a "subject" field for all things published about an author or artist. Not only for books (art or otherwise), but also for articles, interviews, reviews etc. I would like to see this presented on the author's page as "works about". The whole discussion about crediting the artist as co-author would be resolved I think. I tend to agree with DES, an artbook can have an author, who writes the text (or an editor who gathers the art and writes something interesting about it). I would not credit the artist as co-author unless he did some of the writing (which would most likely be a foreword or something). As user, I wouldn't expect to find Bonestell's collected art under Non-fiction (not under Interior Art either) but I would expect it to have a prominent place on the author's page. The Ed Emshwiller case is even more sad. The book doesn't show on his page at all. If I was looking for his work, I wouldn't be able to find it! Willem H. 11:29, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
Subject field would be a nice addition. It solves part of the problem. But in this case it occurs to me Bonestell's work is not the subject of the book nor it is some additional art without which the book would still tell the same "story" - it's an essential part of the book, like the diagrams in a science book. Well, I can't tell for sure, since I don't have it. But let's assume this book is about something "Beyond Jupiter" (or whatever). The text would be about the subject and the paintings would be about the subject. The pick up DES' example from earlier: if a book is about the paintings of Leonardo DaVinci he would be the subject, no doubt. Now imagine: if he was still alive and contributed some paintings to a book about the planet Jupiter (he made those especially for the book and they are an essential part of the book), then I'd rather enter him as a co-author than as the subject. Because the text wouldn't work without the paintings and the paintings wouldn't work without the text - at least not the way it was intended. But on the other hand, an author has to write some text to be an author, right? --Phileas 11:53, 3 July 2009 (UTC)
See ISFDB talk:Proposed Design Changes#Subject for more on how a subject field might work. Feel free to comment there. -DES Talk 14:49, 3 July 2009 (UTC)
As a consequence (and additionally to the subject field) I would come up with a "role" field attached to every author field. Default would be "empty" or NULL and interpreted as normal author. After introduction of such a field every current author would be a normal author until further changes. The role field could cover things like (editor, interior illustrator, cover illustrator, photographer, translator... or whatever somebody could have done to be credited on the cover, the tile page or the copyright page). Of course this would make the "artist field" obsolete and that data would had to be transformed/merged. Also a decision had to be made about how the pubs are presented on the title page (or where ever a short form is used). Some contributors shouldn't be displayed there (translator for example) - only the detailed pub view would display all the contributors. So from all the possible roles the "most significant" had to be chosen for an abstract view that would be used in lists or something. However, as a result of subject and role field the book I mentioned would normally appear on Clarke's page, but on Bonestell's page it wouldn't appear as Nonfiction, but under "As painter" or something like that. While a book about Bonestell's works would appear under "Titles about this person". And while I'm still fantasising: every role could have some checkboxes - that could indicate where the contributor's name appears (Cover, title page, copyright page). I don't don't know if anything of all this could be useful - I just wanted to throw in my ideas. --Phileas 11:53, 3 July 2009 (UTC)
Contributor roles have been discussed at ISFDB:Proposed Design Changes#Roles. That is probably the best place to propose ideas on how such a feture might work. The current discussions there envision something that is a bit different from what you describe above, but serves soem of the same purposes. You might want to post your ideas there. -DES Talk 14:31, 3 July 2009 (UTC)

My Votes page has an error

I log in, click the My Votes link on the Home page, and some of the votes I've given appear, while the rest of the list isn't there. Here's what it says anyway:

"<type 'exceptions.IndexError'> Python 2.5: /usr/bin/python Wed Jul 1 23:38:32 2009

A problem occurred in a Python script. Here is the sequence of function calls leading up to the error, in the order they occurred.

/var/www/cgi-bin/myvotes.cgi in ()
  84         color = 0
  85         while record:
  86                 PrintRecord(record, color)
  87                 color = color ^ 1
  88                 record = result.fetch_row()

PrintRecord = <function PrintRecord at 0xb7b7609c>, record = ((6233L, 183093L, 8689L, 9L),), color = 0

/var/www/cgi-bin/myvotes.cgi in PrintRecord(record=((6233L, 183093L, 8689L, 9L),), eccolor=0)
  32         title = SQLloadTitle(record[0][1])
  33         print "<td>%d</td>" % (record[0][3])
  34         print '<td><a href="http:/%s/title.cgi?%d">%s</a></td>' % (HTFAKE, title[TITLE_PUBID], title[TITLE_TITLE])
  35         print '<td>%s</td>' % (title[TITLE_TTYPE])
  36         print '<td>%s</td>' % (title[TITLE_YEAR])

global HTFAKE = '/', title = [], global TITLE_PUBID = 0, global TITLE_TITLE = 1

<type 'exceptions.IndexError'>: list index out of range "

So, is there a way to solve this problem, or do I have to just forget about it? Thanks HellCold 05:12, 2 July 2009 (UTC)

It's a bug in the display, and looks like it has to do with some missing data (perhaps a pub or title that was deleted). I will look into exactly what's wrong. In the short term, we should be able to fix up the data and let the display work for you. In the long term, we should be able to fix the display to avoid getting into this state. Stay tuned.... --MartyD 10:27, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
Yes, one of the titles you've voted for does not exist anymore (perhaps merged?). I will see if the back-ups can tell us which title it was. I'll pass the info along to Ahasuerus, a moderator who will be able to do a short-term fix for you. I will also log the bug. --MartyD 10:43, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
I logged the display bug as 2815724 in the SourceForge Tracker database. --MartyD 11:37, 2 July 2009 (UTC)

Thanks, worked. Good job! HellCold 08:52, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

I see you saw the fix for this was put up this last night. Thanks for confirming that it did the trick. --MartyD 10:07, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

Thomas Barber, Jr, Thomas Barber, Tom Barber versus artist Thomas Barber

Moved to Rules and standards discussions#Pseudonym assignments -DES Talk 13:58, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

Removing links from Zelazny's "Dawn"

The entry for Zelazny's short story "Dawn" ( contains links to each of the four parts of Dean McLaughlin's serial in Analog of the same name (there's zero connection between the two). I could not figure out how to edit this. Jonschaper 22:28, 20 July 2009 (UTC)jonschaper

That is, unfortunately, a known bug. It is a result of what is called the "Lexical match" logic -- meaning that in trying to match up serials with novel publications, the application looks only at the title, not the author, and takes the first exact match it finds. A Feature request to fix this is at FR #2823387 Remove "lexical match" for Serials on Source Forge. I hope that the fix will be implemented soon. -DES Talk 22:40, 20 July 2009 (UTC)
A full fix is unlikely to be any time soon - but a partial fix that covers most situations should be possible. The tricky bit is when there are multiple authors involved - e.g. a Kuttner & Moore title being compared with a Moore & Kuttner one. But an improvement shouldn't be that difficult for the obviously wrong (No authors in common) although it might be tricky to deal with pseudonyms (as in, they are the same author(s), but it isn't easy to prove). BLongley 23:11, 20 July 2009 (UTC)

Danny Dunn series

Hi, I wasn't sure where else to raise this: Although Raymond Abrashkin died in 1960, Jay Williams continued to list him as co-author of later books in the Danny Dunn series (up to 1977), so I assume it is more accurate to list some of them with Jay Williams as sole author (writing as Raymond Abrashkin and Jay Williams). However since I have no definite information regarding where Abrashkin's contributions to the series ended I am reluctant to submit edits (especially since Jay Williams apparently desired to give Abrashkin co-credit), so I raise this here as a possible item for research. See e.g. the Wikipedia entry for both authors.

Is there a more appropriate forum for posting this sort of issue?

Jonschaper 00:51, 21 July 2009 (UTC)

This is a fine place to ask. In general if Abrashkin is listed on the title page of a book, we would list him here, perhaps with a note about his death. We don't know, and generally won't try to guess, how much writing Abrashkin did before he died. We follow the title page of the book, whether there is a ghost writer or a sympathy credit or whatever. If we have a reliable source that tells us who the actual author is we can set up a pseudonym or variant title. -DES Talk 01:04, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
This can be a trickier issue than it may first appear. Some writers continue tapping into their archives, which contain jointly written texts, even after they stop actively collaborating. See Author:Eando Binder for a particularly complicated example, which took us a while to sort out. Ahasuerus 03:01, 21 July 2009 (UTC)

Publication Listed Under a Noted Pseudonym

"Wynne N. Whiteford" is listed as a pseudonym of "Wynne Whiteford" and most of the publications under the former name are therefore already listed under the latter. However there is still one publication of The Doorway listed under the former name. I assume this should also be listed under the parent name instead so they're all in one place. What is the best way of editing this? Would using the "Make This Author a Pseudonym" feature be redundant? Jonschaper 02:11, 21 July 2009 (UTC)

No, that has already been done. Simply making one author name a pseudonym of another does not automatically move all titles onto the "parent" author's page. There are good reasons for this, for one case see V. C. Andrews.
To make the title display on the parent author's page, and not on the pseudonym's page, a variant title must be used. If the title was also published under the canonical author's name, find that record and note its record number (at the end of the title display URL). Then on the title page of the work using the pseudonym, select "Make This Title a Variant Title or Pseudonymous Work", and enter (copy if possible, to avoid typos) the record number into the "Parent #" field, and click the "Link to existing parent" button. (See Help: How to record a variant title for more detail)
If the title was never published under the canonical name (as far as you can determine) then go to the title record of the work and again choose "Make This Title a Variant Title or Pseudonymous Work". In this case wqork in the lower section "If the parent title does not exist...". Normally you need only change the Author to the canonical name. Then click "Create New parent title. See Help:Screen:MakeVariant for more detail.
Works with multiple authors follow the same basic rules, but you must be careful to get all names into canonical form.
In cases where a name is both a canonical name (for some works) and a pseudonym (for others) an editor must be careful not to create variants for works where the name is actually canonical (not a pseud). Such cases are luckily not too common.
I hope this makes things a bit clearer. -DES Talk 02:34, 21 July 2009 (UTC)
Note that making a variant, as discussed here, is not the same as merging two titles. A merge results in only one title record, with all publications under it. It is done when there is only one work, published under the same title and author credit, but which has somehow been entered separately (this often happens when entering reprint anthologies and collections). See Help:How to merge titles for more details. Creating a variant, on the other hand, leaves two title records, but with a link between them. It is used when the work has actually been published with different title and/or author credits, or when the work has been published only under a pseudonym. -DES Talk 02:42, 21 July 2009 (UTC)


Do these have ISBNs? Working my way through Star Trek and with a particular series, all 9 books have an e-book 'edition'. OCLC does not list them. Only a couple of the records show an 'unknown' binding pub, but the ISBNs on those just bring up the paper version on Amazon and nothing on OCLC. Since we recognize the e-book format, it would be nice to enter them as I go, but with no data..... Thanks! ~Bill, --Bluesman 14:50, 22 July 2009 (UTC)

Under discussion. You might want to wait a little bit. E-books are supposed to have their own ISBN numbers but quite often bear the ISBN of the print edition.--swfritter 16:30, 22 July 2009 (UTC)
Yes, I came across the discussion after posting. Waiting is! ~Bill, --Bluesman 17:23, 22 July 2009 (UTC)

Unlink a serial

Somehow [this] has a 1953 serial by Poul Anderson 'attached' to a 1995 Star Trek novel. How does this link get severed? ~Bill, --Bluesman 17:22, 22 July 2009 (UTC)

Serials have been lexically matched since before I started here. And there's many that are incorrectly linked. There's pending changes that will break this and allow editors to link serials to the one true title, but I think it will be done as a variant. Currently the system does it automatically, by matching titles. As you can see, this doesn't always work very well. MHHutchins 17:32, 22 July 2009 (UTC)
That's right, it will be done via VTs. The first set of changes was delivered this morning and I will be testing them later this week. There is more stuff that needs to happen to fully implement it, but with luck, the conversion to the new methodology will be completed in a couple of weeks. Ahasuerus 18:03, 22 July 2009 (UTC)
Will the system unbreak the current matches, or will they have to done manually? MHHutchins 18:11, 22 July 2009 (UTC)
All Serials that have uniquely matching Novels (as in "the same Author(s) and Title") will have VTs set up for them automatically. Multiple matches, pseudonyms, matching Shortfiction, etc will not be done automatically, but we will have a list of possible matches generated to review and set up VTs manually when warranted. Once all changes are in place, the lexical match logic will disappear and new Serial records will need to have VTs set up for them just like we have to set up VTs for everything else. Not only will it eliminate false matches for wrong authors, but it will also enable us to set up VTs for Serials which appeared under a different title in book form. Ahasuerus 18:50, 22 July 2009 (UTC)
Thank you gentlemen! ~Bill, --Bluesman 19:42, 22 July 2009 (UTC)

Nelson Tremaine / F. Orlin Tremaine / Warner Van Lorne

F. Orlin Tremaine is credited with writing one story as by "Warner Van Lorne", whereas all of Nelson Tremaine's stories listed in the database (16 total) are as by "Warner Van Lorne". However the "Warner Van Lorne" page only lists it as being a psuedonym of F. Orlin Tremaine. Can someone advise me on how to edit the "Warner Van Lorne" listing to include Nelson as well?

Given my ignorance about both authors, I'm certainly not disputing the listing, but I'm also curious if anybody has definite information that F. Orlin wrote the one "Warner Van Lorne" story -- it does have a certain logic since it is the only story listed as being published by F. Orlin in Astounding while he was editing that magazine, so he'd have the same motive as Nelson (presumably a relative) to use it at that time. Jonschaper 02:28, 23 July 2009 (UTC)

It looks like the correct attributions have been made: one story by F. Orlin and sixteen stories by Nelson. The only trouble is, whoever made the attribution stopped in the middle of the process. They should have created another pseudonym of "Warner Van Lorne". Once that is done, all sixteen of his stories will now appear on Nelson's summary page. Go ahead and make a submission making "Warner Van Lorne" a pseudonym of Nelson Tremaine. Notice the warning that F. Orlin Tremaine is already set up as a canonical author. That doesn't mean other writers haven't used the name as well. Just enter "Nelson Tremaine" in the Parent Name field, and submit. I'll approve it. Thanks. MHHutchins 03:02, 23 July 2009 (UTC)
Cheers. On a similar topic, I notice there is an "Orlin Tremaine" listed (with one story from 1940). Anyone have knowledge if this is F. Orlin Tremaine? Jonschaper 03:20, 23 July 2009 (UTC)
According to Donald Day's index, the story is by F. Orlin Tremaine, but I've seen incorrect credits that he'll change into the correct author's name without noting it. It's possible that he was credited as "Orlin Tremaine". Let me do some further research. Anyone have a copy of Fantastic Adventures, March 1940? MHHutchins 03:38, 23 July 2009 (UTC)
Paydirt: cover image for that issue. Look at the top at how the story is credited. Now if we could only look inside and see how it's credited there! MHHutchins 03:43, 23 July 2009 (UTC)
I have a copy, but that part of my pulp collection is a mess :( Ahasuerus 04:06, 23 July 2009 (UTC)
Teamwork! I'll go ahead and make Orlin a pseudonym of F. Orlin on the basis of the cover and Day's info then. Jonschaper 05:12, 23 July 2009 (UTC)

Richard Tierney / Richard L. Tierney / Robert E. Howard

Hi I was trying to verify if "Richard Tierney" and "Richard L. Tierney" are one and the same. Richard Tierney co-wrote "For the Witch of the Mists" (his only entry) with David C. Smith. "Richard L. Tierney" has co-written numerous novels with David C. Smith. A quick websearch showed that both "Richard Tierney" and "Richard L. Tierney" are credited by several sources as having cowritten "For the Witch of the Mists". Case closed? Not yet. In trying to determine if "Richard Tierney" should be made a psuedonym or deleted, I did an image search which only revealed that "For the Witch of the Mists" (on covers at least) has been credited to Robert E. Howard.

So two questions: Can anyone determine if he's ever been credited in print as "Richard Tierney"? And, could I be directed to the policy re how ghost written material is handled? Thanks. Jonschaper 05:45, 23 July 2009 (UTC)

According to the OCLC record for the Ace edition the book was credited to "Richard Tierney" (look down to the responsibility credit). You'll also notice that the title you're talking about is a "Stray Publication", meaning that the author as credited in the pub doesn't match the author as credited in title record for that pub. Looking at the OCLC record for the Zebra edition, it was also credited without the middle initial, meaning our record is wrong (even though it was verified by someone no longer actively editing.) Here are the steps needed to get these pubs (and pseudonym) into shape:
  1. Make "Richard Tierney" a pseudonym of "Richard L. Tierney"
  2. Change the author of this pub to "Richard Tierney"
  3. Change the author of this title to "Richard Tierney"
  4. Create a variant of that same title (once the name-change submission has been approved) for "Richard L. Tierney"
Also, don't be fooled by cover credits. There was a time when there were dozens of titles being released based on characters created by Robert E. Howard, and his name was bigger on the cover than any of the authors. Also, never use cover title or credit as the sole basis for an ISFDB record. We have to use title page credits. We also can't be concerned if a work is ghostwritten. The record must reflect the book as published. If there's enough evidence that someone else wrote it, then we create variants, but the original record must show EXACTLY how the book was credited. Thanks. MHHutchins 16:09, 23 July 2009 (UTC)
I wouldn't say that we "can't be concerned if a work is ghostwritten", but MHHutchins is absolutely correct that the publication record should show exactly what is on the title page of the published work. When there is good reliable evidence for a ghostwriter or ghost (uncredited) co-author, we can create a variant to show this. If the evidence is quite strong, and particularly when the same ghost wrote multiple works under the same name, we can also create a pseudonym relationship to show this, but since currently there is no easy way to undo a pseudonym, that step should be taken only after careful and through research and often discussion. -DES Talk 16:37, 23 July 2009 (UTC)
You're right. I should have said "we should not be concerned if a work is ghostwritten until it's been determined through reliable sources who the actual author is." (Just being lackadaisical.) Thanks Jonschaper for bringing the stray pub to our attention. The submissions have been accepted and everything looks fine. MHHutchins 02:33, 24 July 2009 (UTC)
Ahasuerus and I today discovered an example where we shouldn't always use title page credits: see here. And recently I was reminded of The Worlds of Robert Heinlein, where there is no title page credit unless you assume it from the title. I think we need a backup plan for exceptions where title page credit is wrong or absent. I used copyright page in the latter example, and dismissed printer errors in the former. Is that right? BLongley 22:36, 26 July 2009 (UTC)
I think you were right in both cases. I'm not sure that such exceptions are common enough, and fiollow a sufficiently regular pattern to really have a rule other than "Discuss exceptions on the wiki and do what seems reasonable after discussion". I would agree that if there is no author credited on the title page, the copyright page is a reasonable source, particularly in cases where there is no serious dispute as to the actual author, as with the "Worlds of RAH". We could doumnt that, i suppose.

W. J. Stephens(with Ralph Harding)

How did we get "W. J. Stephens(with Ralph Harding)" set up as a pseudonym? BLongley 22:23, 26 July 2009 (UTC)

By typing letters into submission forms? :) It seems a poor choice, however. -DES Talk 23:50, 26 July 2009 (UTC)

Larry Niven's "Flare Time" in Analog Anthology #5: Writers' Choice

I think Niven's "Flare Time" should be deleted from the listing for Analog Anthology #5: Writers' Choice. It never appeared in Analog (it was in Andromeda 3 and subsequently reprinted in Amazing Stories) and it is absent from other TOC listings for that collection (generally the hardcover version) I have found online. Anyone have a copy handy? Jonschaper 01:59, 27 July 2009 (UTC)

#5 is the only one that I don't have in this series, but we have a verified record for the hardcover version and it doesn't include the Niven story. Contento doesn't list it either, so I think it's safe to remove it from the Publication. Also, if you run "Diff" on the two Pubs for this Anthology Title, you will notice that the verified Pub lists Dickson's "Steel Brother" while the other one lists "The Steel Brother", a variant title of the same story which is also presumably in error. Ahasuerus 03:24, 27 July 2009 (UTC)

Dave Stone 1950s Art?

I highly doubt that this Dave Stone both wrote for Judge Dredd and Dr. Who since the 1990s and did art for US magazines in the 1950s with a gap of over 30 years in-between. Anyone have the necessary references to check this? Jonschaper 05:55, 27 July 2009 (UTC)

My guess is that this is the artist either going by "Dave" or with his name incorrectly listed here. Jonschaper 05:57, 27 July 2009 (UTC)

Checking the titles that we currently have on file, it certainly looks like the 1950s version of "Dave Stone" is the same as "David Stone". Ahasuerus 13:04, 27 July 2009 (UTC)
I've met Dave Stone many times (he was a housemate of a former girlfriend of mine) and can confirm he's not old enough to have created 1950s artwork of any kind. (Unless they give Doctor Who writers their own TARDIS for background research purposes, but I saw no evidence of that: if anything, the house was smaller on the inside than it appeared to be from the outside.) BLongley 19:11, 27 July 2009 (UTC)
However, that leaves the question of how he was credited in various pubs, or how he should be credited if the art is attributed based on a signature only, with no copyright page or otehr text credit. In short, what is the canonical name. -DES Talk 05:40, 28 July 2009 (UTC)
Fantastic Adventures, January 1953 - credited as Dave Stone on the toc; no credit on the title page or signature on art. Considering the time frame and publications involved assumed to be the same artist as D. Stone, perhaps the same artist as David Stone and Stone.--swfritter 13:33, 28 July 2009 (UTC)
Please don't make any more changes. This is pseudonym situation.--swfritter 13:50, 28 July 2009 (UTC)
The submissions have been rejected and I have changed the artist's name to Dave Stone (50's artist) pending further review of Canonical Name decisions. Still to be verified is whether all these various Stones are actually the same person. It would be kind of nice if we had some kind of nomenclature rather than pseudonym to describe this situation. Variant credit is actually more accurate.--swfritter 15:39, 28 July 2009 (UTC)
"Variant credit", "variant name form", "Multiple name form", "Multiple form of name" all work for me. -DES Talk 15:46, 28 July 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for the notice about the changes. I guess I should have been clearer about possible solutions to the problem. My accidental approval of the first submission may also have misled you.--swfritter 16:03, 28 July 2009 (UTC)

Andrew Stephenson / Andrew M. Stephenson

Both Andrews appear to be writer / artists published in the UK, and both have done art for Christopher Priest's Inverted World. Anyone know if one should be a pseudonym, and if so, which one? Jonschaper 05:37, 28 July 2009 (UTC)

I think they're probably the same. It might be better to ask Dave Langford though: he mentions "Andrew Stephenson" as a leading Fan Artist at times (nickname/signature "Ames" it seems) and in this piece there's a reference to his first novel "Nightwatch". BLongley 19:19, 28 July 2009 (UTC)

Audio vs Text Versions

William Shunn's "Observations from the City of Angels" published 2003 was made into an audio recording in 2006. Should these be merged, made variants or be left alone? Jonschaper 01:39, 30 July 2009 (UTC)

If it's a reading of the story and not an adaptation, you can merge the two title records. I believe that the Escape Pod downloads are complete readings, so go ahead and merge the two records. The person who entered those Escape Pod recordings is usually pretty good at merging records. The problem may have been that the capitalized "From" in the title would have kept it from showing up on a search for duplicate records. I don't believe "from" should be capitalized, but go ahead and merge the two, choosing either one, and we can decide the proper title later. Thanks. MHHutchins 04:28, 30 July 2009 (UTC)

Delete "L. Shepard's" "The Dragon Criaule"?

I found a highly dubious name and title listing here:

Although a web search seems to turn up an ISBN for this book, the entry here lacks any details, I have never seen Lucius Shepard credited as "L. Shepard" in print, it is not listed on Lucius Shepard's webpage or wikipedia page, the character's name has always been spelled "Griaule" elsewhere (not "Criaule"), there are zero cover images online, and I have been unable to turn up evidence of a single copy ever being printed online (all booksellers like Amazon have it as unavailable or out of print). Note: I cannot find a book entitled "The Dragon Griaule" either. Anyone with more info? Should this entry be deleted?Jonschaper 03:56, 30 July 2009 (UTC)

Yes, delete the title record, as there is no publication record associated with it. Must have been snagged by a bot and allowed to get into the db. Good catch! MHHutchins 04:14, 30 July 2009 (UTC)

Pulphouse cleanup

I found this duplication of entries for issue 4 of Pulphouse with the title entered in two different styles:

It does not appear as if these should be considered two separate publications. This has also created the situation of a Robert Sheckley story being entered with two variant titles (apparently the same publication with one of the titles entered incorrectly):

It would therefore appear that some cleaning up may be necessary for Pulphouse. I do not have access to any issues so I propose that someone else take up this task. Thanks Jonschaper 05:40, 30 July 2009 (UTC)

Pulphouse has always been a difficult publisher to deal with here on the ISFDB. Most of their pubs don't have ISBNs. Almost all pubs have two or three variant states (trade paperback, hardcover, leatherbound). They've published many single story chapbooks, a monthly magazine-cum-author's collection series, and their novella-length books have caused more than a few headaches about whether they should be classified as SHORTFICTION or NOVEL. Their magazine in its first incarnation (there were several) was published in a hardcover trade edition and a leatherbound signed limited edition. When I get a chance I'll work on those pubs that you've pointed out, possibly making one of them the trade edition and the other one the limited edition. Just got to figure out what was the actual title of the Sheckley story. I'll let you know when it's in better shape. Thanks. MHHutchins 06:08, 30 July 2009 (UTC)

Rick Sternbach

I'm dubious that Rick Sternbach (born 1951) wrote The Hands (published 1953). QMacrocarpa 14:46, 30 July 2009 (UTC)

You are pretty clearly correct. It is, of course, possible that there was another "Rick Sternbach" who wrote this story. The actual publication appears to be credited to "Richard Sternbach", and I suspect that the link betweeen Richard Sternbach and Rick Sternbach is a mistake. Thank you for bringing this to our attention. -DES Talk 15:21, 30 July 2009 (UTC)
Yes. Richard Sternbach is actually the same person as Richard A. Sternbach. Will fix.--swfritter 15:55, 30 July 2009 (UTC)

Howard Schoenfeld's "Built Up Logically" vs "Build Up Logically"

Are these variant titles of the same story, two different stories or a minor spelling error in one case? Both versions of the title appear in different editions of the Aldiss edited Penguin Science Fiction Omnibus, and I believe that "Built Up Logically" is the original title. Jonschaper 05:44, 31 July 2009 (UTC)

I'll leave at note on Bill Longley's page. He verified two of the three appearances of "Build...". There's a very good case that this is just a variant title of "Built...". Thanks. MHHutchins
It's definitely "Build" in my Penguins. I have no "Built" to compare with. BLongley 13:16, 31 July 2009 (UTC)
Variant created. MHHutchins 18:47, 1 August 2009 (UTC)
Is "Built Down" a sequel or another variant? I don't think I have that. BLongley 22:47, 1 August 2009 (UTC)
I'm assuming it's a sequel, as it appeared only a year later in the same magazine. And both appear in an author's collection. MHHutchins 16:57, 2 August 2009 (UTC)
I have the F&SF with "Built Down Logically" so I'll see if they have any descriptions of it as a sequel or whatever. The wikipedia page for Schoenfeld refers "Built Up Logically" as his most reprinted. Jonschaper 06:07, 5 August 2009 (UTC)
From the Dec 1951 F&SF intro to "Built Down Logically": ''ll remember Howard Schoenfeld as being singularly successful, in his Built Up Logically, at creating a world which, like that of Lewis Carroll or that of the Marx Brothers, has a madly plausible coherence of its own. In this latest anecdote, Mr. Schoenfeld has done it again...' This suggests to me that "Built Down..." is the first 'sequel' (Build and Built both being dated 1949), so that further supports the conclusion they're variant titles. Built Down appears to only be a sequel thematically. Jonschaper 22:59, 5 August 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for the research! I must reread "Up" and see whether I want "Down" desperately. BLongley 23:09, 5 August 2009 (UTC)

Jack Vance in Ellery queen omnibus

I have an Ellery Queen omnibus where only one (of two) is by Jack Vance. So how do I do a nongenre omnibus where there is only one pseudonymous title?Don Erikson 17:49, 1 August 2009 (UTC)

If the writer of the second title is not in the db with a substantial proportion of spec-fic, don't enter the title as a content. Record it in the notes field. At least, that's what I would do. Anybody else have a suggestion? MHHutchins 18:49, 1 August 2009 (UTC)
That works for me. Or just record it as a publication of the Vance novel, with a note about the other content. I am assuming that neither novel is SF. -DES Talk 19:46, 1 August 2009 (UTC)
I think an Omnibus with a single Non-genre pseudonymous Title (with the other one in Notes) would be a more accurate representation of the pub. Ahasuerus 20:19, 1 August 2009 (UTC)
Reasonable. Just a thought. -DES Talk 20:21, 1 August 2009 (UTC)

Hilbert Schenck

I notice Hilbert Schenck is listed as a pseudonym (with no parent). Am I correct in my guess that this is a known issue and not easy to correct? Jonschaper 06:10, 5 August 2009 (UTC)

It's obviously an error, or a bug in the system. I don't know how to correct it. Any other editor have an idea how this happened and what, if anything, could be done to correct it? MHHutchins 12:19, 5 August 2009 (UTC)
The database has a table recording pseudonym relationships between author records. There is an entry in that table that has the Hilbert Schenck record a pseudonym for a no-longer-existing author record. The rendering of the search results scans this table to populate the "Pseudonym?" column and does not verify that the parent record exists (it shouldn't have to). Other parts of author-related display most likely work directly with the author records (i.e., "get me the author for which Hilbert Schenck is a pseudonym") and consider finding no parent to mean it's not a pseudonym. Looks like there are 62 such problems in the Aug 1 back-up.
select count(*) from pseudonyms where not exists
 (select * from authors where authors.author_id = pseudonyms.author_id);
these can be cleaned up:
delete from pseudonyms where not exists
 (select * from authors where authors.author_id = pseudonyms.author_id);
It seems likely that merging or deleting an author is not (or was not at one point) managing this table properly. --MartyD 17:32, 5 August 2009 (UTC)
I can confirm Marty's clean-up script works. In addition to fixing the "Pseudonym?" column it also fixes the "Used As Alternate Name By: blank" line. Now, how to convince Ahasuerus to run it? BLongley 18:00, 5 August 2009 (UTC)
I'll test it tonight locally and add it to the next patch. I'll also try to recreate the problem (Author merges?) if it still exists and log a bug report. Ahasuerus 15:05, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
The script looks and runs fine. I'll do the rest tomorrow. Ahasuerus 03:57, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
Additional testing confirms that merging Authors doesn't touch the pseudonym table. The exact results vary depending on which Author record is dropped during the merge, but it's always ugly. Bug 2834693 created. A data cleanup script, delete_defunct_pseudonyms.sql, has been committed to the repository and associated with Bug 2834027, "Delete defunct pseudonyms". It will be run as part of r2009-17. Ahasuerus 02:32, 10 August 2009 (UTC)
I think this used to be a circular pseudonym, or maybe a chained one, or just one the wrong way round. Such is only partially fixable - you can rename the authors on lots of titles and pubs until the author no longer remains, in which case it's deleted: and then when you rename them all back it's under a new author id with no pseudonym associations. However, the original pseudonym connection is still there, pointing to a non-existent author. In this case, "Hilbert Schenck, Jr." is now 121330 whereas he used to be 21677, but there's still a link between 21677 and 1559 (the "No Jr." author). There needs to be a better clean-up when an author record disappears, but there's also the stray records to clean up. BLongley 17:47, 5 August 2009 (UTC)
I think it would be possible to improve this by renaming both authors completely until they disappear, and then rename both back, so the stray link is from a non-existent author to another non-existent author and shouldn't bother anyone. But that's too much effort for me to bother with. Maybe if there were only a couple of titles I'd try it. BLongley 17:47, 5 August 2009 (UTC)

Adding in an ISBN/Catalog#?

I wanted to add an ISBN for the October 12, 1981 edition of Analog, but I can't find where to do it. Can I get some help? Thanks! —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Asuyuka (talkcontribs) .

Go to the pub record for this issue. Click on "Edit this Pub". Fill in the blank records (or change them if incorrect.) This pub has been primary-verified, meaning that another editor has determined that all of the information is correct. Before making any major changes to a verified publication you should write that editor (post a note on his user talk page.) Also, magazines ordinarily do not have an ISBN, so I'm not sure exactly what you're trying to add. Some issues now have ISSNs, but we've determined that the ISBN/Catalog# field is not a good place to record them. Also, remember to sign all of your comments on the Wiki using four tildes (~~~~). There's a list of helpful links that's been added at the top of your user talk page. Please don't hesitate to ask if you're unable to find the information you're looking for. And welcome to the ISFDB. MHHutchins 12:16, 5 August 2009 (UTC)
The print my dad has has an ISBN specifically listed, so that's all I'm trying to do. Thank you for your kind help, though. Asuyuka 21:18, 5 August 2009 (UTC)Asuyuka
I've placed your edit on hold and will have the original verifier look at it. Thanks. MHHutchins 21:21, 5 August 2009 (UTC)
Asuyuka, I think you may be confusing Bar-codes with ISBNs - there is often a relationship, but not in this case. I'm tired and can't respond fully tonight, but will try to tomorrow. (I scanned the relevant sections then got side-tracked.) BLongley 23:39, 5 August 2009 (UTC)
OK, there's not much point uploading the scan. "0 71486 02028 41" is indeed present on the cover. But that's not an ISBN: ISBNs were only 10 digits long in 1981, not 13: 13-digit ISBNs start "978" (or soon, "979"): and magazines usually have ISSNs instead, but those are only 8 digits. BLongley 18:25, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
So well done for spotting the number, but I don't think it's one we want. It's about as useful as me telling you I'm drinking "5 035766 040088". BLongley 18:25, 6 August 2009 (UTC)

How to handle non-genre magazine title change?

In trying to enter some non-genre magazines for SF works of Poe, I've run across the United States Saturday Post, which was an earlier name for The Saturday Evening Post. See [4] and [5] for some documentation. How should one of these issues be treated? As a completely separate magazine with a note about the relationship to SEP? With the USSP title and matching editorship, but then put it in the "Saturday Evening Post" series? With the USSP title but SEP editorship? Thanks. --MartyD 11:48, 6 August 2009 (UTC)

That's the method I have been using with Blue Book. --swfritter 13:37, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
The Montly Story? :-) Ahasuerus 16:22, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
Language and spelling do change over time. Or perhaps Montly was an editor and they titled the mag after him.--swfritter 19:19, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
If you combine the titles by editor name you may want to put links to the same editor records for each different title.--swfritter 13:37, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
This prompted me to make a similar change to All-Story/All-Story Weekly. This mag was particularly problematic in that many sources refer to All-Story Weekly simply as All-Story. Also, I am not sure that it is necessary to put the title records in a series. It really does not make it that much easier to determine whether a particular issue is in the database.--swfritter 15:48, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
I don't find the series approach to non-genre magazines particularly helpful. If we are using a a consistent "The editors of" wording for the editor spot, then searches on the magazine name find those records. But I don't see that the series does any harm, if people are willing to take the trouble of updating it. -DES Talk 16:04, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
When dealing with non-genre magazines that published a fair amount of SF over a long period of time, e.g. Argosy, I find that Series grouping can make it easier to find the right year on the Summary page. Ahasuerus 16:22, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
As the issues accrue it will definitely be of value to merge Editor records by year. If that is done then an Editor record for a specific year will only have to placed into a series once. Subsequent merges will combine the Editor records with an Editor record that has the series value. Really not that much work. This will also make it possible to search by series. It would definitely be nice for a weekly like SEP to have the Editor records merged by year.--swfritter 20:54, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
In a similar vein, it occurs to me that for magazines with a large number of issues, a series per Volume, actually numbering the issues, and a master series, with each Volume as sub-series (perhaps someday to be number-able), might be a useful organization. --MartyD 10:31, 7 August 2009 (UTC)
Unless something has been fixed lately, there are problems with sorting a series which has sub-series. Many orphan series have been created as editors learned that lesson. The work on non-genre magazines should definitely not take any more work than is necessary to determine whether a specific issue has already been entered. Our primary interest is not the non-genre magazines themselves but the stories that appeared in them.--swfritter 18:00, 7 August 2009 (UTC)

Robert W. Wood vs. Robert Williams Wood

Now, this person was a physicist, not really an SF author, but he co-wrote two books (The Man Who Rocked the Earth & The Moon Maker) (with Arthur Train, also not normally an SF writer except for these two books). The former, which I entered from the PG edition, lists him as Robert Williams Wood; this is what the PG edition says (and, I'd hope, the source publication, but I have no direct evidence of this). The latter, supposedly a direct sequel published a year later, says (in our database) Robert W. Wood.
It seems to me that it would be well to make one of these a pseudonym for the other, establishing a canonical name, but under the circumstances I'm not really sure which way we'd want to go. Thanks. -- Dave (davecat) 19:53, 6 August 2009 (UTC)

Wikipedia titles its article "Robert W. Wood", but uses "Robert Williams Wood (May 2, 1868 – August 11, 1955)" as its lead. A google search on "Robert Williams Wood" or "Robert W. Wood" seems to indicate that a majority of web sites use the "Robert W. Wood" form in their page titles, but the "Robert Williams Wood" form early in the page, possibly in many cases following Wikipedia. I think we could pretty well flip a coin on which form to make canonical -- either would be just fine. -DES Talk 20:22, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
OCLC doesn't know how the 1916 version of The Moon Maker was credited, but the 1958 reprint was apparently attributed to "Robert W. Wood". However, most of his books, including The Man Who Rocked the Earth and the recent omnibus reprint by Lulu, apparently appeared as by "Robert Williams Wood", so I have made it the canonical name and set up a pseudonym and a VT. Ahasuerus 16:12, 7 August 2009 (UTC)
You not only made the decision, but did my work for me? Thank you!!! -- Dave (davecat) 00:56, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
Work? Updating the database is how I relax after working on ISFDB software development, testing, deployment, maintenance and arguing about our rules :) Ahasuerus 02:40, 8 August 2009 (UTC)

Other Non-Genre Magazine issues

Prompted by Mike's stated intent to Americanize all magazine titles with days in I did some investigations and discovered we 1) still have no documented standard for dates in titles with day of month in them, then 2) "Science Fiction Weekly" is here, with lots of missing review links, then 3) they have missing Editor records, and then 4) judging by the Magazine Index we don't want them as it just cross-references to "scifiwire" and not to publications. And 5), we still have the bug that makes a Magazine with only one review in appear without contents that really are there. BLongley 19:54, 6 August 2009 (UTC)

Oh, and 6) we still haven't fixed all Reviews with missing reviewed authors. :-( BLongley 20:03, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
(after edit conflict) On your first point only, Help:Entering non-genre magazines#Steps to take says: "The ISFDB standard format for this field is "Magazine Name, Month Day, Year" for dailies or weeklies, "Magazine Name, Month Year" for monthlies, or "Magazine Name, Month1-Month2 Year" for bimonthlies. See Help:Screen:EditPub for more details. Follow the ISFDB standard insofar as possible." Help:Screen:EditPub does not seem to mention dates with day numbers. Still this is a standard, IMO. It may be the wrong one, but I think it constitutes a "documented standard". I think we should either a) make Help:Screen:EditPub consistent with this standard, or b) discuss the matter (probably on Rules and standards discussions, agree on a standard, and make both help pages conform. Any views? -DES Talk 20:07, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
OK, it's documented, although somewhere nobody will find it. I see I did have a brief input to that help but I don't recall a consensus. I think swfritter wanted a consistent rule for both genre and non-genre, so Rules and Standards would be appropriate. BLongley 20:41, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
Some of the other issues probably need discussion elsewhere (I think two are definite bugs, but I don't have time tonight to check whether they're recorded at Sourceforge, or just here, or nowhere). Sorry to open such a big can of worms, but as people seem to be actively working on some of these areas it's probably best to hold up the "Whoa!" flag before people put too much effort into stuff. BLongley 20:41, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
Since the majority of pubs with valid dates to the day level seem to be non-genre magazines (at least in my limited experience), this seems not such a horrid place, but I agree, let's have a rules discussion. -DES Talk 20:44, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
I have no objection to raising issue that may need to be dealt with. -DES Talk 20:44, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
Rules and standards discussions#Date formats including Day of the Month discussion section created. -DES Talk 21:02, 6 August 2009 (UTC)

Entries for Plagiarised Stories

Irwin Ross' "To Kill a Venusian" is plagarised from Boucher's "Nine-Finger Jack" as per the notes for the issue of If it appeared in and the issue of If in which this act of plagiarism was revealed

This raises some questions in my mind about how cases of word-for-word plagiarism should be handled (since I don't have "To Kill a Venusian" and "Nine-Finger Jack" to compare, I'm only raising this theoretically). In such a case, is there a way to add the former publication to the actual author's story's publication history (e.g. the listing of appearances of Boucher's "Nine-Finger Jack") without making the plagiarist a pseudonym of the actual author? If not, I imagine this is an issue that wouldn't come up often enough to justify a software rewrite. I suppose an alternative might be to add a note to the "Nine-Finger Jack" page noting that it also appeared in the plagiarised version so someone looking up the story can have a complete history of its publication.

I think it would also be appropriate to add notes to the pages of known plagiarists stating which stories are plagiarised (otherwise, e.g., just looking at Ross' page it appears he wrote three original stories when that isn't the case), and that a note should also be entered onto the story's page noting it was plagiarised from the original so one doesn't need to go to the publication's page to discover it was a copy and not an original story.

Feedback and comments? Jonschaper 05:10, 7 August 2009 (UTC)

I'm the editor who wrote the notes to that issue of If in which the story appeared, but I wasn't as knowledgeable about the workings of the database at the time to carry through on it. I later came upon this act of plagiarism, and you can see I handled it differently. I made the author of the plagiarized work a pseudonym of the real author, and then made the title record of the work a variant of the original title. That's the best way I can see to handle it. Now that you've brought the other case back to my attention, I'll look it over and see if the same approach would work. If I handle it the same way, the plagiarized story will disappear from Ross's page, but the other stories will remain (until it's determined that they're also plagiarized!) Thanks. MHHutchins 05:28, 7 August 2009 (UTC)

User: Scott Latham - Note of 19 July 2009

Morning! This. [6]. I am confused by the ErnestoVeg note. Why/What/Where??? Thanks, Harry. --Dragoondelight 14:24, 9 August 2009 (UTC)

It looks to me as if that note was intend for the talk page, not the user page, and was reporting a broken cover link on a pub verified by Scott Latham. -DES Talk 14:47, 9 August 2009 (UTC)

Series within a series

[This] 1914 publication poses a problem I'm not sure how to solve. It is in the DB as an omnibus, in spite of never having been issued as separate novels before the one edition was published (magazine serials were its' origins). That is not really a problem. Between 1965 and 1967 Avalon Books reissued the 'omnibus' in FIVE parts, even though the original book only had three. The first part of the 'omnibus' and the first Avalon book are the same. Each of parts 2 and 3 have been split into two parts each. One part retains the title of the original section of the 'omnibus' while the other parts have new titles. They aren't/can't be considered variants. I don't think.... What I would like to do is create a series 'tree' that looks like this:

          1: Darkness and Dawn
          2: Beyond the Great Oblivion
                    1:Beyond the Great Oblivion
                    2:The People of the Abyss
          3: The Afterglow
                    1:Out of the Abyss
                    2:The Afterglow

I think even the first 'book' has been split. How do I do this? Thanks for any input. ~Bill, --Bluesman 01:22, 11 August 2009 (UTC)

I don't believe that the series method is going to help this. The first thing to do is remove the same titled Avalon books out from under the record which they're presently recorded (titles 2.1 and 3.2 shown above). I think they should be made into variants of the original titles, just as 2.2 and 3.1 should be made variants of their respective titles. Let me work with it awhile and see if I can come to any satisfying solution. If not, I'll let somebody else take a whack at it. MHHutchins 02:54, 11 August 2009 (UTC)
Take a look and see what you think of how it's displayed. The variants are not numbered (the system can't do that), but at least they're under the titles from which they were split. MHHutchins 03:07, 11 August 2009 (UTC)
Not comfortable with 1/2 a book being a variant of a whole one, but the only other solution, since the system can't do the sub-series in a numbered fashion, would be changing the over-all series to a five-part. Then it conflicts with the original 'omnibus', though. I had already put notes in each of the five Avalon releases as to which part it is. Will add an over-all note to the series title, as well. I see you beat me to it! Thanks for the time and effort! ~Bill, --Bluesman 13:14, 11 August 2009 (UTC)
I think maybe a title note on the sub-books (2.1, 2.2, 3.1, 3.2) would further improve clarity. -DES Talk 08:33, 11 August 2009 (UTC)
On looking further I see that there are notes, but only at the publication level. I think they would be helpful at the title level in this case. Do you disagree? -DES Talk 14:52, 11 August 2009 (UTC)
I don't like the idea of a book being a variant of half of itself either. Our help currently says:
""Split" novels. Occasionally a novel will be published as a single volume, and then republished (perhaps in another country) as two or more separate volumes. For example, Peter Hamilton's "Night's Dawn" trilogy was republished as six volumes in the US. The first book, "The Reality Dysfunction", was republished as "The Reality Dysfunction, Part One: Emergence", and "The Reality Dysfunction, Part Two: Expansion". The other two volumes were treated similarly. In these situations, the books should be treated as novels, even though they form only part of a work published as a novel. Also note that the original book is still treated as a novel; it does not become an OMNIBUS because it contains two works later republished as novels. Situations like this should be documented in the notes, and if necessary discussed on the bibliographic comments page for the publications." (See Help:Screen:EditPub#PubType.)
I think I wouldn't try to make any of these variants of any of the others, just have them all as novels, with proper title-level notes. I would also rename 1.1 to "Beyond the Great Oblivion (short version)" and 3.2 to "The Afterglow (short version)" or some similar form. That isn't perfect either, because in the series dispaly it won't be clear what is a part of what until you look at the individual titles. I don't think there is a perfect way to handle this sort of situation with out current software. IIRC there is a pending feature request to allow sub-series to be numbered within the parent series. That might help. -DES Talk 14:52, 11 August 2009 (UTC)
Sounds like a "Windows" patch. Hopefully we don't have to do that. It's an oddball situation, for sure. The current 'solution' with the notes should be a sufficient 'patch' for now. ~Bill, --Bluesman 21:05, 11 August 2009 (UTC)
This issue will have to be tabled until we come up with a variant based on text and not title or author. Until then anything is just a fix. Anyone looking at the notes I placed in the title records should be able to figure it out. The variant solution is as viable as the series solution. You're welcome to try your method. MHHutchins 15:52, 11 August 2009 (UTC)
I did something similar with a Star Trek 'sub-series' recently, and it displays almost the same as what I had hoped for this one. The thing is, if one chooses to make a title a series, what would happen when one of the 'components' of said series has the same title? Might create a feedback loop that could destroy civilization as we know it!!! Kidding aside: the ST thing goes as such: VOYAGER: Homecoming [2] has two titles, numbered, with a third title (not numbered) that has two numbered 'sub' titles. If I had thought it out, I would have made the third title #3 before creating/adding the other two titles. Now, that is impossible as the DB does not recognize "Spirit Walk" as a title at all. The order this works in is very sensitive, so it seems. It was an alternative to what Mike did but without being able to 'see' the end results I didn't want to attempt it as series stuff is so impermeable to change at the moment. I think the DB can be fooled if it's done in the correct order, just no way for me to test that theorem. ~Bill, --Bluesman 21:05, 11 August 2009 (UTC)
A screen shot of the variant solution as a record in case you attempt the series solution:
MHHutchins 15:56, 11 August 2009 (UTC)
Also don't forget that we use the first date of book publication for Novels :) And yes, this is a known limitation of the software and one of the most awkward ones. I expect that we will add sub-series numbering over the next few months, but I am not sure that it will get us where we want to be. Suggestions more than welcome! Ahasuerus 21:29, 11 August 2009 (UTC)

Reviews with incorrect book author credits

When a review incorrectly credits the author of the work being reviewed, I seem to recall that we simply altered the review to the correct form, possibly with a note. Have I remembered correctly? Is this still the case? Or do we construct a variant review? or what? -DES Talk 01:46, 11 August 2009 (UTC)

Yes, you're right. In order to avoid the creation of a variant based solely on a mistake printed in a review, we enter the author (and title, if incorrect) as credited on the book, not the review. I will go back later and record the error in the note field of the review record. Some editors prefer to mention it in the notes field of the pub record. Either way is fine with me. MHHutchins 02:42, 11 August 2009 (UTC)
Thanks. -DES Talk 08:34, 11 August 2009 (UTC)

Changing author names

I was trying to change the name of Agnes Dodart to Agnès Dodart (with the grave accent), but get an error reading "Error: Canonical name 'Agnès Dodart' already exists, duplicates are not allowed." How can I change an author's name?Jefe 20:53, 17 August 2009 (UTC)

I think, that this is essentially another instance of the problem discussed in FR 2800891 Allow editing Author name caseas modified by the effects of implementing FR 1743274 Two Authors With The Same Name Are Allowed.
As I understand it, the software checks for an "Identical" name, ignoring differences of case. If it finds one, it disallows the edit, for fear of creating duplicate authors. The "ignore case" code s probably also ignoring the difference between an accented and an un-accented character.
If I am correct, there is nothing to be done until a software fix is made. If I am mistaken, one of the active developers will no doubt correct me. -DES Talk 21:06, 17 August 2009 (UTC)
It's related to the FRs that DES lists above, but the bug itself is new and was introduced when we disallowed the creation of duplicate canonical names. The problem with accents is that the software uses a standard lookup which doesn't distinguish between "è" and "e", so the software thinks that "Agnès Dodart" is already on file. I will create a bug report, thanks! Ahasuerus 21:40, 17 August 2009 (UTC)
P.S. Bug 2839253 created. Ahasuerus 21:43, 17 August 2009 (UTC)

Richard and Rick Parks

"The Passing" and the accompanying bio essay listed under "Rick Parks" were definitely written by Richard Parks as per his website's bibliography , but "Daughter of the Heartwood" and the review aren't listed on his page so it looks like it's not as simple as just making Rick a pseudonym. Anybody have info tying Richard to the latter titles? Jonschaper 06:13, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

"Daughter of the Heartwood" is listed as a Richard Parks story by the Locus Index. Reviews are harder to attribute since many bibliographies omit them, but given the publication date, it's probably a reasonable guess (I know, famous last words) that it was written by the same person. When we set up these variant titles, we may want to make a note that these texts are not listed on the author's Web site, though.
Having said that, we do have a number of cases with different people using the same name and they are always painful. If you do a search on "David Alexander", you'll see what I mean :) Ahasuerus 11:31, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

Russ Winterbotham adds became R.R. Winterbotham instead

Morning! Mess up once, maybe, twice no. I added two priory printings. First. [7] , Red Planet which I know I put Russ Winterbotham as author, but it know says R. R. Winterbotham. Went crazy and changed both top and contents today. Second entry, [8] , The Space Egg, which again popped the Russ and changed to R. R. What the heh? Both were add publications and both my memory swears were Russ's. Thoroughly disgusted. Thanks, Harry. --Dragoondelight 12:13, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

Assuming you didn't mis-enter them, which is possible but unlikely, I can only assume that some other editor changed them from "Russ" to "R. R.", which is the canonical name. Or is it possible you've misremembered which pub you entered? This pub of Red Planet is recorded as by Russ, as are THSPCGGCDB1958 and THSPCGGQCG1962 for The Space Egg. Although again that would mean you made two separate mistakes on works by the same author, which seems unlikely. I'm leaning to the "someone else changed them" theory, but if there is an easy way to determine who, i don't know what it is. Sorry not to be more help. -DES Talk 15:08, 18 August 2009 (UTC)
If you were on the title page of the canonical title by R. R. Winterbotham and clicked on "Add Publication to This Title", then the software associated the new Publication record with R. R. Winterbotham Title rather than with the Russ Winterbotham variant title even though you changed the "author" field of the Publication record. The way to add this Pub to the "Russ" Title would have been to go to the variant title page and click "Add Publication to This Title" there. This is a rather messy part of the system and we will need to redesign it sooner rather than late. Ahasuerus 15:39, 18 August 2009 (UTC)
In the meantime, I have moved the Pub from "R. R." to "Russ". The submission that you created earlier today would have changed both the Publication author and the Title author. The latter would have changed the canonical "R. R." title to "Russ" and caused a problem. Have I mentioned that we really need to redesign this area? Ahasuerus 15:39, 18 August 2009 (UTC)
Sory but "the Space Ege" [9] is still stuck under R.R. Thanks, Harry. --Dragoondelight 12:04, 19 August 2009 (UTC)
Oops, forgot the other one. Fixed now, thanks! Ahasuerus 16:22, 19 August 2009 (UTC)

Brian Ball series to Brian N. Ball

Morning! If Brian N. Ball is the canon name [10], should not Brian Ball [11], be there? Yet I do not see how you move the series to it. Thanks, Harry. --Dragoondelight 12:42, 21 August 2009 (UTC)

Yes those works should appear on Brian N. Ball. This is done by making each of the works listed under Brian Ball a variant. Go to the title page for each work under "Brian Ball", and click "Make This Title a Variant Title or Pseudonymous Work". If a given work was also published under the canonical name (check first), make it a variant of the title under the canonical name. If not, use the lower part of the make variant form, enter the canonical name for "Author1", and click "Create New Parent title". Once the edits creating the variants are approved, the various series will appear on the canonical page Brian N. Ball automatically, there is no need to do anything specifically to the series, just to the titles under them. I hope this helps. -DES Talk 14:50, 21 August 2009 (UTC)
Thanks, I was worried about the series. Thanks, Harry. --Dragoondelight 15:08, 21 August 2009 (UTC)
It would have made more sense to make Brian N. Ball the pseudonym. Most of his works appeared in the UK as Brian Ball (or "B. N. Ball" earlier in the magazines and one book). "Brian N. Ball" was used for the few US publications. Too late to change now. Maybe later when we have the ability to reverse pseudonyms? MHHutchins 17:01, 21 August 2009 (UTC)
We have the ability, if not the desire to put all the effort in, as it means editing every single title and publication and variant. We did it for John Grant at his request. BLongley 19:15, 21 August 2009 (UTC)
Also series do not get transferred to the canon author's summary page. The title records of the variant title will have to be swiped clean and the canon title record will have to be updated with the series information. MHHutchins 17:03, 21 August 2009 (UTC)
Yes, that's one of the pains I've gone through several times when I've discovered a pseudonym. :-( Maybe I should work on a pseudonym reversal script. BLongley 19:15, 21 August 2009 (UTC)
My error about the series, sorry. Another thing that could use improvement. -DES Talk 19:56, 21 August 2009 (UTC)
I'm beginning to think we need this pseudonym reversal script urgently, as there's several authors that should be sorted out and only the dithering over canonical author is delaying it. Having a quick reversal option would make me happier in fixing H. F. Heard and Gerald Heard, or Christopher Blayre and Edward Heron-Allen, to use just a couple of examples from tonight's work. The problem is that it's easy to do a simple reversal, slightly more complex when there are series involved, rather more complex still when there are multiple pseudonyms (I haven't mentioned E. Heron-Allen yet have I?) and when there are shared pseudonyms/house-names or real people have things ghost-written for them, or joint authors have multiple pseudonyms , it's going to be next to impossible. I think I'd like Ahasuerus to chime in here with a view on what sort of script would be approved for use. (If a script would be acceptable - unfortunately adding this sort of edit as a totally new type of edit with approval steps by a moderator adds complexity too, whereas a "simple" A/B swap script is something I'd look at.) BLongley 20:53, 21 August 2009 (UTC)
"One time" aka "conversion" scripts are useful when we need to change hundreds and thousands of records in a predictable fashion, e.g. links Serials to their parent Novel Titles. However, we can't use scripts as a substitute for new options -- that way be [big and hungry] dragons.
Having said that, I agree that we definitely need better tools to handle pseudonyms. I think that the most natural first step will be to create a simple "remove pseudonym" option, which will help us clean up a lot of accumulated debris, including circular pseudonyms. Once that is out of the way, we can create a relatively simple "reverse pseudonym" option, which may not let you handle multi-pseudonym records, but will flip flop simple "one to one" relationships. Creating new options is not that terribly complicated, although the first one is likely to be a little painful since we will need to learn submission formats and such. Ahasuerus 22:09, 21 August 2009 (UTC)
I think I'll look into the script anyway. Even if you're not willing to run it on the live database, it'll show the SQL necessary to accomplish the task, and people can try it out, and hopefully it will show all the checks needed or people can advise on others. It would also be easier to convert into a stored function or procedure, which I think will be needed for the big-ask tasks. There's no point me trying to develop the whole thing in one go - I don't know enough Python, and we haven't agreed on any new XML submission formats before - but if I can offer a "Call ReversePseudonym with Author_ID1 and Author_ID2 parameters" option to the other developers it can only be a step forward. BLongley 00:11, 23 August 2009 (UTC)
Sure, sounds useful! Ahasuerus 01:27, 23 August 2009 (UTC)
Having said that, what version of MySQL is the live database running on? BLongley 00:11, 23 August 2009 (UTC)
Server version: 5.0.45 Source distribution
Ahasuerus 01:27, 23 August 2009 (UTC)

H. P. Lovecraft and alternate name

I have some problem with the author “H. P Lovecraft”. If you take a look to the author page, you see that there are many alternate names and many of them are real authors.

Example : Ashes

1 .Title : « Ashes » and author « H.P. Lovecraft » date 1924 (first publication), (Weird Tales, March 1924,)

2. Variant title (1) : “Ashes” and author “C. M. Eddy Jr”

3. Title : “Ashes” and authors “C. M. Eddy Jr” and “H.P. Lovecraft”, with no publication, date 1923 (writing date)

4. Variant title (3) : “Ashes” and author “C. M. Eddy Jr” (The Horror in the Museum and Other Revisions, (1989, H. P. Lovecraft,) and reprint

5. Variant title (3): “Ashes” and author “C. M. Eddy Jr” (The Loved Dead and Other Tales, (Feb 2009, C. M. Eddy, Jr.)

Action to do : make 1 Variant title of 3; delete title 2, merge title 5 to title 4.

Can I do that ?

Thanks, ChanurBe 09:53, 23 August 2009 (UTC)

Sorry for my bad english, I’m french speaking.

I do not think you will see anyone complain about your English! You have nothing to be sorry about. (And we would all be very sorry if I tried to speak French...). As for Lovecraft, I am not a moderator, so you will get some more experienced and official help later. It looks like you know most of this, but here are some comments:
  1. You want to have one instance of each of the authorships. There should be one title by "H. P. Lovecraft", one title by "C. M. Eddy, Jr.", and one title by both "C. M. Eddy, Jr." and "H. P. Lovecraft". Two of those titles should be variants of the third (the "parent").
  2. Right now, there are two parents (1) 85569 and (3) 978388. You must decide which of these is what is called here the "canonical" title -- the master title, the title that will be the only parent. I do not know enough about Lovecraft to suggest which one; I suspect it should be (1), but I do not know. I am sure someone else will have an opinion.
  3. (2) 191677, (4) 977638, and (5) 1029521 are all the same title. You should merge all three, and keep the title_parent you identified above (either 85569 or 978388).
  4. If you decided (1) should be the parent, make (3) a variant of (1). If you decided (3) should be the parent, make (1) the variant of (3).
  5. When all of the merging is done, check that all three titles have the same date.
I hope that helps. --MartyD 11:17, 23 August 2009 (UTC)
I actually entered The Loved Dead and Other Tales and did merges on the title story -- obviously I didn't do enough on this one. I found some online sites that regard this as by HPL and Eddy, and some as by Edy alone "incorrectly attributed to HPL" -- but I am not a Lovecraft expert, and I suspect that there are more reliable sources that I didn't check.
I agree with what Marty said above. I would incline to make (3) the parent, because the publisher's site for The Loved Dead and Other Tales says that 'all stories in that volume were set from handwritten manuscripts by Eddy, which strongly suggests that Eddy had a hand in this story, at least. It may be that there are actually two texts: one written by Eddy, and one re-written by Lovecraft. But someone would need to compare texts to establish that. -DES Talk 13:04, 23 August 2009 (UTC)

I find in Locus index (search on Eddy) that “Ashes” is ghost written by “H.P. Lovecraft”.

The presentation on Arkham House for “The horror in the museum“ say : “It was not the creative work under his own byline that was H.P. Lovecraft s major source of income, but the revising of manuscripts submitted by hopeful authors, young and old, that supplied enough income to enable him to eke out a living." ChanurBe 14:01, 23 August 2009 (UTC)

Sounds like a good reason to make (3) -- 978388 -- the parent. I also see in H. P. Lovecraft frequent use of joint authorship as the canonical title, so you would be following precedent. Variant relationships are easy to rearrange (unlike pseudonyms), so set them up the way you think they should be; it can be changed later. --MartyD 09:51, 24 August 2009 (UTC)

DAW Books Series

I've carefully read archives, but I've not find anything about this argument. I hope that this would be the right site.

The reprints are not dated, but is indirectly possible to define the year of publication. Starting from the # 9 in the series, appear on front cover a six digit code. The first two are price code Ua (where a varies from Q, J, Y, E etc...) the second four are a progressive number. First editions have the number series; reprints lack the number and have only the six digit code. I've verified many volumes (between 1972 and 1992) and was always true that reprints are chronologically numbered with first editions.
This is the situation:

Year 1st# #Series
1972 1001 1
1973 1037 37 (3 Cap. Kennedy unnumbered; 1 unknown reprint)
1974 1085 89
1975 1150 133
1976 1213 177
1977 1275 224
1978 1350 272
1979 1435 320
1980 1508 360
1981 1584 415
1982 1694 464
1983 1789 512
1984 1895 560
1985 1989 609
1986 2104 658
1987 2178 696
1988 2254 731
1989 2319 768
1990 2401 803
1991 2460 838

If you agree, it is possible to use this table to date DAW Books reprints. --ErnestoVeg 15:03, 26 August 2009 (UTC)

I believe that Marc Kupper's DAW Book List attempts to record the books exactly as shown in the books themselves (correct me if I'm wrong, Marc). So that may be why he doesn't list the dates of reprints in his list (if the books don't state the date, then his list doesn't show them either). But as far as the database is concerned, I think this list can be very helpful in determining the dates for the database records. Thank you Ernest for supplying the information. (I changed the range of years to "between 1972 and 1992", assuming the previous dates were a typo. I also note for those unfamiliar that the second column is the DAW catalog number and the third column is the DAW Collectors Number.) Thanks. MHHutchins 17:54, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
It just occurred to me that sometimes DAW will reprint and NOT change the catalog number if the price remains the same. In that case Ernest's list may be misleading. So it may not be as useful as I first thought. :( MHHutchins 18:03, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
Perhaps this table should be reproduced on Publisher:DAW? -DES Talk 19:02, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
The period 1972-1985 has an high rate of inflaction. A reprint with the same price means that the reprint is probably in the same year. The table is useful only for the year, of course. I don't like "publication date unknown". No problem to reproduce my table.--ErnestoVeg 06:47, 27 August 2009 (UTC)
I don't love "publication date unknown", but I prefder it to an incorrect date. While inflation was fairly high during that time, I have plenty of cases in my own collection of books purchased two years apart, from the same publisher, and of the same size, with identical prices. I don't think "no change of price" confidently can be equated to "published the same year", although it does limit the time lapse. -DES Talk 14:55, 27 August 2009 (UTC)

Magazine covers that illustrate specific stories

When a magazine cover illustrates a specific story in the magazine (as is often the case) and this is stated in the magazine, or can be reliably determined from another source, how do we indicated this? In pub notes on the magazine? in a note on the cover art record? some other way? The help seems to be silent on the point. -DES Talk 15:17, 26 August 2009 (UTC)

I've only ever seen it noted on the publication. BLongley 17:52, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
That seemed reasonable, but I haven't done many magazines, and i wanted to be sure. Thanks. -DES Talk 18:59, 26 August 2009 (UTC)

Transfering award listings

While working on the ISFDB:Serial Cleanup project, i came upon this title record. I would delete it as a a placeholder no longer needed, but it seems to be the anchor for an award listing. I'm afraid f i just delete it, the award listing will be lost. Should I merge it with 193169 this title? Or what action should I take? -DES Talk 19:42, 26 August 2009 (UTC)

Merging a record with another preserves any award that's linked to either one, or at least, that's been my experience. Not that I'm in a hurry to deal with them, but maybe one day we'll be able to edit awards. MHHutchins 21:14, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
Thanks. -DES Talk 21:31, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
I suspect merging a "best serial" award record with the first serial record is the most sensible. I would advise that people take the publcation date rather than the award date though, Al seems to have assumed all awards are for the previous year, whereas some are actually awarded at the the end of the year for titles published that same year. I would also encourage people to find publications we record awards for, but don't have yet. But ignore the media awards: unless, maybe, we have a book or magazine version? (That may need to be taken to rules and standards.) BLongley 21:44, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
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