ISFDB:Help desk/archives/archive 30

Jump to navigation Jump to search

This is an archive page for the Help Desk. Please do not edit the contents. To start a new discussion, please click here.
This archive includes discussions from January - June 2019.

Archive Quick Links
Archives of old discussions from the Help desk.

1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · 6 · 7 · 8 · 9 · 10 · 11 · 12 · 13 · 14 · 15 · 16 · 17 · 18 · 19 · 20 · 21 · 22 · 23 · 24 · 25 · 26 · 27 · 28 · 29 · 30 · 31 · 32 · 33 · 34 · 35 · 36

Expanded archive listing

Collection vs. Omnibus

The first publication of Une ville flottante was a serialization. The first book had the novel and a second novella "Les forceurs blocus" added. That makes this the first publication of both titles. By our definition I believe that makes this a Collection. There are later publications (primarily English translations) with both of these that are listed as Omnibuses. Given that the two titles were published earlier, does the Omnibus designation stand or should these also be Collections and should they be varianted where the titles differ to the original collection? Would independent publication of each of the titles be required for them to be Omnibuses? ../Doug H 23:39, 2 January 2019 (EST)

Any opinions? ../Doug H 14:03, 24 February 2019 (EST)
The OMNIBUS section of Template:PublicationFields:PubType uses words like "may", "generally", "inclination" and "somewhat subjective", so it's not cast in stone. Also, the Help template was originally written before we added support for translations, so it may not account for them.
I would pick one title type (OMNIBUS or COLLECTION) and use it for the canonical title and all of its variants. My thinking is that the type is less important than keeping things consistent. Ahasuerus 13:42, 25 February 2019 (EST)
I always considered an OMNIBUS to be a COLLECTION of stories within the same universe (say, novels 1-3 in a series, or several novellas within the same universe). A COLLECTION is an ANTHOLOGY of (mostly) unrelated stories by a single author (or group of authors). That's how I view them, anyway. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 14:43, 25 February 2019 (EST)
I don't think we have ever used the connection -- or lack thereof -- between constituent titles when determining publication type. As the linked Template says:
  • "Omnibus" is appropriate for such publications as the Science Fiction Book Club's collections of three independent novels by different authors under one set of covers; or for a single-volume edition of all the Amber novels by Roger Zelazny.
The main difference between an OMNIBUS and other types of "container" publications is that one of the contained titles is book length -- i.e. a NOVEL, ANTHOLOGY, COLLECTION, or NONFICTION -- and that they were previously published independently. Ahasuerus 15:42, 25 February 2019 (EST)
Ah, that one fell out my brain. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 18:27, 25 February 2019 (EST)
Is prior publication of the contents necessary to be classed as an OMNIBUS? If so, what would you call the publication of with multiple works appearing for the first time? What if it's a mixture? Would publication in a non-genre paper/magazine count as prior publication, even if we don't record it, except in notes? ../Doug H 15:58, 25 February 2019 (EST)
The Help text quoted above suggests that prior publication is necessary for a book to be classified as an OMNIBUS. In the past we had editors who felt strongly about this. They were against using the OMNIBUS title type for "container" books which included previously unpublished novels. I don't know how they would want to treat translations and other "mixed" scenarios.
I suspect that this will become a thornier issue as the world of publishing expands. For example, we typically do not list works [exclusively as a Web page], but their reprints and translations can pose various problems. For now, we try to apply the current rules as written -- as I mentioned earlier the Help text gives us some leeway -- but we may need to revisit the issue in the near future. Ahasuerus 16:46, 25 February 2019 (EST)

(unindent) To summarize what I'm hearing. For a collection with novels A and B: If A and B were previously published in a form we track as a publication, use an OMNIBUS. We could stretch this to previously or concurrently. Otherwise use a COLLECTION. ../Doug H 22:40, 25 February 2019 (EST)

Sounds about right. Ahasuerus 10:57, 26 February 2019 (EST)

If the novels are republished together, use an OMNIBUS and variant to the COLLECTION if the title changes. ../Doug H 22:40, 25 February 2019 (EST)

I am not sure I understand what "republished together" means in this context. If it's just another edition of the same book, then it will be entered as a publication with the same container title (OMNIBUS or COLLECTION as the case may be.) If the book title changes when it's reprinted, then it will have a new container title record which will be a variant of the original container title. My inclination would be to avoid OMNIBUS/COLLECTION and OMNIBUS/ANTHOLOGY mismatches between parent and variant container titles and to make the title types of the two container titles the same. However, that's just my inclination; I don't think Help is clear on this topic. (BTW, this is one reason why I have always been somewhat uncomfortable about using "previous publication" as a criterion for determining title type.) Ahasuerus 10:57, 26 February 2019 (EST)

If A and B are translated (A' and B') and are published together, the same rules apply but using the translated version (i.e. if A' and B' were published previously or concurrently). ../Doug H 22:40, 25 February 2019 (EST)

Can we add the Canopus Award?

Although it's not clear if it's still alive, it did make some relatively high profile awards for a couple years:

Previous awards: —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Deepsettpress (talkcontribs) .

I'll copy the proposal to the Community Portal and comment there. Ahasuerus 20:40, 4 January 2019 (EST)

British currency notation

Help:Screen:NewPub says to enter older British currency as Shillings/Pence. What is the correct notation if there are pounds, shillings and pence (e.g. I just found a three-volume book which is 1l. 11s. 6d.)? --Vasha (cazadora de tildes) 01:46, 5 January 2019 (EST)

Found this example which seems a reasonable way to do it. -- JLaTondre (talk) 09:16, 5 January 2019 (EST)
That is a horrible expensive 1939 chapterbook at five pounds five shilling, are you sure it isn't 5/5, five shilling and five pence?--Dirk P Broer 16:30, 5 January 2019 (EST)
You would have to ask Bluesman as it says "Price, engravings artist from Tuck" & he did the Tuck verification. -- JLaTondre (talk) 14:11, 6 January 2019 (EST)
Anyhow, it is from a publisher specializing in fancy limited editions, though £5 is a bit expensive even by those standards. --Vasha (cazadora de tildes) 14:32, 6 January 2019 (EST)

"last printed page number"

It is stated that "For books, the general rule is to use the last printed page number". As my english is not perfect, I have a doubt: can you confirm that it is the "number of the last printed page", and not the "last (page number) printed". Because the stored number of pages for the record is 345. This number 345 is the last number printed (here, the last page of the last story) - and the number given by the BNF (see note). But the real last page of the book (with ISBN, end of printing, legal depot printed) is 352 - also given by the editor.

Note: It seems that the BNF uses the "last number" printed, which is imho really bad (the last page of the novel is sometimes after the number of pages as the last non-complete page is often not numbered) and illogical (as the first page is counted from the first sheet or first printed sheet, even if the first printed number is 9 or 13) - Gilr 15:55, 5 January 2019 (EST)

I always do it as "page number of the last printed page" (not counting advertisements). Therefore, if the last printed page doesn't have a page number, it can be extrapolated from the last page with a printed page number. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 20:36, 5 January 2019 (EST)

Canonical author for a disputed work

The Two Partings appeared unsigned at its first publication, and the identity of its author is uncertain; see here for a summary of the debate. We currently have this story in the database credited to William Morris, as it appeared in a recent anthology. Should I make "uncredited" the canonical author? I originally thought "by uncredited [as by William Morris]" sounded wrong, but I guess it does indicate an unknown anonymous author. --Vasha (cazadora de tildes) 21:20, 12 January 2019 (EST)

Angry Robot printings

I have Kameron Hurley's The Stars Are Legion, but am unsure whether it's a first or second printing. On the copyright page I have
This edition published blahblah by Angry Robot in 2017
Does this '2' imply second printing? Thanks! MagicUnk 06:01, 13 January 2019 (EST)

Yes, that seems to be the case. Stonecreek 14:57, 13 January 2019 (EST)

Entering a review

Is this correct? I followed the instructions to enter the review as an essay in the contents, then as a review, and sure enough, now it's listed twice? Thanks gzuckier 20:12, 13 January 2019 (EST)

Yep, that's the way to do it. Just to make things absolutely clear, why don't you add a note to the record for "End Times" that it's a review of "We Can Save Us All." --Vasha (cazadora de tildes) 20:52, 13 January 2019 (EST)
Why would you add it BOTH as an essay and as a review? is the essay substantially longer than the review and/or containing multiple reviews? If not, what is the reason to have both? The idea of the review as an essay is either to replace the review when the reviewed book is not in scope (so it will never get connected to a title) or is a review of series and so on OR to serve as an umbrella title when we are dealing with columns/articles containing multiple reviews and other elements (think Asimov's review columns - and then we can have an article AND the multiple reviews). So... what is the case with that one? Annie 21:13, 13 January 2019 (EST)
One problem is that a Review record does not record the title of the essay. If the essay is a substantial "think" piece, you'd really want it recorded as an essay... I think the review record is just a supplement in order to link it to the reviewed work.
I must say, though, I'm not clear on why a nonfiction articlesfrom the New York Times Book Review should be entered anyhow. --Vasha (cazadora de tildes) 21:19, 13 January 2019 (EST)
Which is why I am asking about the reasons for having it added as both before I start answering if it is the correct way or not. There are legitimate cases when this is how we add reviews; there are cases where we do not - and without more information a blanket answer is more than confusing. Annie 21:41, 13 January 2019 (EST)

Linking to Armchair Fiction cover scans

The page for Template:PublicationFields:ImageURL says that we have been granted permission to link to images on Armchair Fiction's website, but how is that done? The ISFDB software flags a link to their catalog site as one we don't have permission for.

Some older links go to what seems to be a special database once set up by Armchair for us, for instance:

http:slash slash

but when I tried inserting a DN number in the 200s I got a 404 error message.

I'd like to replace some of Amazon's single-cover links for Armchair dos-a-dos books with ones showing both covers together. MOHearn 13:37, 14 January 2019 (EST)

It turns out that Sinister Cinema is the parent company of Armchair Fiction. They are both owned by Greg Luce and list the same contact information. I am going to add to our list of white-listed sites -- give me an hour or two. Ahasuerus 16:00, 14 January 2019 (EST)
Done! Ahasuerus 16:21, 14 January 2019 (EST)
Terrific. Thanks! MOHearn 17:49, 14 January 2019 (EST)

Secondary verifications

I've got a problem. Looking into Cleanup Report Publications with an OCLC Verification, no ISBN and no OCLC External ID I found several pubs with note "No OCLC entry" but in Secondary Verifications marked as "verified". Shouldn't those better marked as "N/A" ? Examples: Beware the Beasts, Beware the Beasts, Boomerang, Căluțul cosmic, and some more. I couldn't find any WorldCat entries either. What shall I do? --Zapp 13:20, 20 January 2019 (EST)

If the verifier is active, notify them on their page - clicking the wrong radio button does happen. If they are not, collect the list and post it here or on the moderator board - Ahasuerus should be able to fix them. Annie 13:24, 20 January 2019 (EST)

Distinguishing reviewed items with same name, how to

For instance, a review of Foundation, the short fiction (by Asimov), as distinct from Foundation, the novel? Thanks. gzuckier 18:40, 23 January 2019 (EST)

When you have the review record open, you will see a link in the sidebar tools, "Link Review to Title." That's what you use to give the title record # of the work it's a review of. --Vasha (cazadora de tildes) 20:47, 23 January 2019 (EST)
ah, thanks 21:59, 23 January 2019 (EST)

Science Fiction: The Early Years by Bleiler

I tried to replace the Amazon scan for this pub with a new scan at about 7:30 pm, 1/23/19. All three time I tried gave me an internal server error. I leave it to someone more adept than I to replace the scan. Bob 20:32, 23 January 2019 (EST)

Could it be that you ran into the problem discussed on Help:How to get the image displayed on its wiki page? Ahasuerus 21:51, 23 January 2019 (EST)

Double novel covers

I'm confused by the contributions of the artists for double novels, for example here. Sometimes there are two covers (front cover and cover2 for back cover) with two particular artists, sometimes one cover with two artists (of front and back), sometimes only the front cover with artist and the back cover as interiorart (bc). I guess we should come to a consistent way for all pubs. Which kind of presentation is to prefer? --Zapp 15:37, 25 January 2019 (EST)

Originally, the software allowed only one COVERART title per publication. Editors had to get "creative" when entering multi-cover publications. Since different editors used different methods, the results varied, which is what you are seeing.
The part of that software that handles covers was rewritten in late 2015-early 2016. We can now have as many cover art titles as needed -- see this publication for an example. In addition, we now allow as many artists per cover art title as needed.
Publications which still use old, "creative" methods of entering cover titles need to be upgraded to use one cover art title per cover. Ahasuerus 18:49, 25 January 2019 (EST)
I like the way, to call the cover of the second novel that is printed on bc as interior art (bc). What is Your opinion for a consistent way of presentation? --Zapp 19:03, 25 January 2019 (EST)
I don't think entering cover art as INTERIORART is allowed under the current data entry rules. Help:Screen:NewPub says:
  • Add Cover - If there is more than one COVERART record associated with this publication, use this button to create an additional record. This typically happens when dealing with "dos-a-dos" books.
  • Interior artwork: Works of art published inside the publication are entered into the "Regular Titles" section of the data entry form and typed as INTERIORART. For more information, see INTERIORART. Note: Cover art credit is entered into its own separate section of the data entry form.
If you feel strongly about this issue, we can discuss it further on the Rules and Standards page. However, before we do, could you please clarify what types of scenarios you have in mind? "Dos-a-dos" covers, illustrations that appear on the back cover or something else? Ahasuerus 19:35, 25 January 2019 (EST)
Except that same help page also says "Artwork on the back cover of a publication is treated as interior art" (under Regular Titles, Title, Artwork). So it conflicts with itself. -- JLaTondre (talk) 20:14, 25 January 2019 (EST)
Something we should absolutely not do is call art on the OUTSIDE of a book INTERIORART. That is just ridiculous if you ask me. The sofware allows for any combination of artists and covers (plural!), which makes sense. We need to fix the help JLaTondre pointed at instead, which is clearly a remnant of ancient times and should have been removed ages ago. MagicUnk 01:32, 26 January 2019 (EST)
I agree with MagicUnk. So this one and this one are incorrect, also this way. I suppose all publications should go like this. "Cover" for the front, "Cover2" for the back. I'm I right? --Zapp 06:24, 26 January 2019 (EST)
Another point: Should the titles of covers get the double title of publication (both covers the same?) or every cover the respective title of the single novel? --Zapp 08:40, 26 January 2019 (EST)
For your specific examples, there's a very strong argument to go with two records with respective title of the single novel. It's unambiguous and immediately clear what cover art it's about. MagicUnk 11:42, 26 January 2019 (EST)
But it is the way ISFDB is organized to call only the art on the front 'cover art'. There is very often artwork on the back of magazines or on the back of a book, but accompanied by cover blurbs, citations etc, which quite easily is outruled as cover art for those reasons. That is why we refer to cover art only when it is on the front of a publication. Stonecreek 09:10, 26 January 2019 (EST)
That doesn't answer my two former questions. --Zapp 09:23, 26 January 2019 (EST)
Sorry, but there seems to have been only one question and that I have answered, I think. Stonecreek 10:11, 26 January 2019 (EST)
If we truly apply the rationale "accompanied by cover blurbs, citations etc, which quite easily is outruled as cover art for those reasons", than most front covers would be excluded as well. Armchair Fiction Double Novels have a full cover on the back that is no different than the front. From a cover point of view, they are the same as dos-a-dos covers. -- JLaTondre (talk) 11:18, 26 January 2019 (EST)
(after edit conflict) Related to what pub types' cover artwork we want (or do not want) added to the db, that is another discussion altogether.
The current discussion is about how to enter and standardize multiple cover artwork (front AND back). At least for dos-a-dos and the aforementioned examples, it is obvious that the custom is to record the information, and that we want to add both pieces of art - which does make absolute sense to do (irrespective of whether it's covered in the current rules or not - if it's not, we need to update the rules). If we do enter the information, then we enter it as two coverart records.
To take this a little further. We can decide to explicitly prohibit entering cover art appearing on the back of magazines (I wouldn't, personally. I would add it to the db in case of back cover magazine art too. But if there's a majority wanting such a rule, who am I to object?). Conversely, we can explicitly allow multiple cover art records for, say, novels, novella's whatnot. In that case I can think of the following scenario's:
  • front and back cover art by different or same artist; if it's a two-novels-in-one-pub, two records with the title of the respective novels; if it's a single novel with front and back cover art, two records with the title of the novel and a disambiguator, for example This Novel Title [1], and, This Novel Title [2] (or something similar) with their respective artist credits, and with an explanatory note added.
  • front cover by two artists; one coverart record with two authors
  • front cover consisting of two pieces of distinct art, mashed together by the cover designer; two records, with the title of the novel and a disambiguator and an explanatory note - same as above.
According to me it would be 'trivial' to cleanup & clarify the coverart entry rules and, more specifically, allow and clarify multiple-cover-art-artists data entry cases. Cheers! MagicUnk 11:41, 26 January 2019 (EST)
Allowing that would lead to more complications, I do think. There are often only vignettes or other not-fully accomplished back cover artworks. I can see the upcoming discussions if such an artwork should be regarded as full cover art, or not. The way we have it now really seems to be the most easisest to follow. Stonecreek 12:02, 26 January 2019 (EST)
Would you think so? In my experience I find it quite clear whether it's just a vignette or similar, or if it's a work of art that deserves mention in and of itself. MagicUnk 13:00, 26 January 2019 (EST)

(after sleeping on it) Let me take a step back and provide more background information.

Back when version "2.0" of the ISFDB software was being designed (2003-2005), the "titles" table was set up to support 3 types of art records: COVERART, INTERIORART and BACKCOVERART. The last one is still defined at the database level -- see Schema:titles -- but it's not supported by the software. I don't know/recall why Al, who was the ISFDB developer at the time, chose not to implement BACKCOVERART. If he mentioned his reasons in 2006-2008, I must have forgotten them.

Since we could have only one COVERART title record per publication between 2006 and 2016, the assumption was that "COVERART" always referred to the publication's front cover. The only way to capture background covers was by using the INTERIORART title type. Once the software was changed to support multiple COVERART records, more options became available. It was no longer immediately clear whether COVERART records referred to front cover art or whether they applied to back cover art as well. Hence the current discussion.

I guess at this point we have the following options:

  1. Use the COVERART title type for all works of art that appear on publication covers.
  2. Use the INTERIORART title type for works of art that appear on back covers.
  3. Implement BACKCOVERART as a separate title type. It would be handled just like the COVERART type: multiple BACKCOVERART titles would be supported per publication and multiple artists would be supported per title.

Although it would be possible to add BACKCOVERART to our menagerie, there are a few things to consider. First, it would be fairly time-consuming to do. Second, we would need to decide how to handle various unusual scenarios. Off the top of my head:

  • "Wraparound" covers with the same image used on the front cover, back cover and possibly spine.
  • Publications with multiple covers where it's not clear whether the book has two front covers (dos-a-dos) or a front cover and a back cover.

I suspect that these scenarios would make it difficult to decide what is COVERART vs. BACKCOVERART, so adding support for BACKCOVERART may create more problems than it would solve.

P.S. We may want to move this discussion to the Community Portal since it involves possible software changes as well as Rules and Standards changes. Ahasuerus 14:04, 26 January 2019 (EST)

To be continued there. --Zapp 13:19, 27 January 2019 (EST)

Mike Morgan

How do you separate an author record into two author records? For example, I am Mike Morgan, and you have an entry for me, which is great. But you have another Mike Morgan's work in my list, too (the first 2 stories are not by me). So, how do we disambiguate? Also, publisher's insist on listing me as Michael Morgan sometimes, so you have me listed that way, too, as a separate author. But, again, the Michael Morgan entry contains some stories not by me. How do we get all my stories in 1 list that excludes stories by other Mike / Michael Morgans? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Morganmike (talkcontribs) .

When we have two authors with the same name, we disambiguate one of them by adding differentiating text to their name. See Help:How to separate two authors with the same name for specifics on how this is done. Dave Smith and Dave Smith (1954-) is an example of how this works. When we have an author that has published under two names, we create an alternate name relationship between the two names. See Help:Screen:MakeAlternateName for this is done. In this case, since there are multiple authors under both Mike Morgan and Michael Morgan, both will need to be seperated out and then the two that are you will need to be made alternate names of each other. You are welcome to make the edits (you should provide an explanation in the notes to moderators if you do). Or since this isn't the easiest for new users, you can also post which stories are yours (for each name) here and someone will take care of it. -- JLaTondre (talk) 22:55, 30 January 2019 (EST)

How to reference pages preceding page 1?

Sometimes the situation comes up that content is on pages before page 1 of the novel. Say, for example, that I have 12 unnumbered pages before start of the novel on p 1. If the novel's last printed page number is 402, I would enter the total number of pages as [12]+402, and I would record start of novel being page 1 in the contents section. So far so good. Now my question: how do I enter pagination for contents (eg a map appearing on the unnumbered pages 10 and 11) that come before the start of the novel? I can't enter
[10] Novel title (map)
1 Novel title
because that would be confusing since you wouldn't know if the map was on unnumbered page [10] before start of novel, or on page [10] after start of novel as part of the contents of the novel proper.
I've solved this -and I've seen others do it- by entering pagination info for the unnumbered pages in roman numerals and adding a clarifying note. The example would then become: total no of pages [xii]+402, contents would be listed as
[x] Novel title (map)
1 Novel title
What's the recommended, best practice here? MagicUnk 07:25, 31 January 2019 (EST)

I've often had to refer to the help pages here and here. There's still the odd situation the rules don't cover or aren't clear on, but it's a start. ../Doug H 08:20, 31 January 2019 (EST)
Thanks, I've read these pages, but I don't think this particular case is covered, at least I couldn't find it. MagicUnk 08:34, 31 January 2019 (EST)
When there are unpaginated pages preceding page 1 that one wants to refer to I use Roman numerals and add a clarifying note, like here. Stonecreek 09:01, 31 January 2019 (EST)
The help on pages reference (rather than number of pages one's above) states "If a content starts on an unnumbered page within a range of unnumbered pages, its page number should first be derived and then entered in squared brackets". So confusing as it may be, your first choice seems to be correct. And according to the second and third bullets in the first link above, the use of roman numerals is for pages that specify them, the square brackets [ ] being used for unnumbered pages. ../Doug H 10:23, 31 January 2019 (EST)
It doesn't specifically say not to use roman numerals for unnumbered pages. gzuckier 17:22, 2 February 2019 (EST)
Well, yeah... but what about cases such as [10]+400+[15], where you have unnumbered pages before and after the body of the work? if you refer to page [5]. Which one is it? Before or after the body text? What I actually do for the 'after' bodytext case is applying the first bullet rule, ie deriving page numbering based on the last printed page number. My example would then be page [405] referring to the 5th unnumbered page of the unnumbered page range following the bodytext. This approach obviously breaks down for unnumbered page range before the bodytext (unless we go with negative page numbers :)
Current rule is not unambiguous enough, so should be improved. Shall we move the discussion on how to improve referencing unnumbered pages before the numbered page range to R&S? MagicUnk 13:25, 31 January 2019 (EST)
If we've moved past your question about how to record and reference pagination to the how do we fix it stage, I think moving to the the Rules and Standards noticeboard with a statement of the problem would be the logical next move. ../Doug H 13:44, 31 January 2019 (EST)
Will summarize and post to R&S sometme tomorrow MagicUnk 15:52, 1 February 2019 (EST)
To my novice mind, using roman numerals for the unnumbered pre-pages makes the most sense, and it seems to me offhand that that wouldn't cause any problems. The only problem that would leave was if there were unnumbered pages before numbered roman numerals before regular numerals. gzuckier 17:18, 2 February 2019 (EST)

disambiguating author

Hi I think, based on no evidence at all, that the 1930s novelist here is not the same guy as the 2006 book review/essay guy of the same name. Is this something I can split or is it a job for the authorities? thanks. gzuckier 17:12, 2 February 2019 (EST)

Splitting looks like a good idea to me. Maybe a little research will find some info about one or the other. --MartyD 21:15, 6 February 2019 (EST)

Stephen Cox - Two authors confused how best to disambiguate

I am Stephen (Peter) Cox a British writer.

The current Stephen Cox entry confuses two people - the biographical details and books on American popular culture are Stephen ("Steve") L Cox.

The novel, the short fiction, and the interview are me.

How best can I disambiguate? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Stephen Cox (talkcontribs) .

When we have two authors with the same name, we disambiguate one of them by adding differentiating text to their name. See Help:How to separate two authors with the same name for specifics on how this is done. I have made the changes based on what you have said above. Please validate. If any others need to be changed, you can follow the steps in the help or post here and someone will take care of it. Thanks for letting us know. -- JLaTondre (talk) 09:52, 11 February 2019 (EST)

Thanks so much, this is correct - I am not quite sure how to validate - and I will try to add additional information.Stephen Cox 10:59, 11 February 2019 (EST)

does this count as a review?

The various books, articles, etc. regarding whether Mary Shelly is the actual author of Frankenstein or whether it was her father or Percy Shelly etc... do they count as reviews for the purpose of this database? My instinct is yes.... ? gzuckier 00:18, 16 February 2019 (EST)

Based on your description, it sounds like an essay (or nonfiction if book length). A review is more about the quality of the work. Critical analysis and other debates are not really reviews. -- JLaTondre (talk) 08:22, 16 February 2019 (EST)
ok, thanks gzuckier 22:45, 16 February 2019 (EST)

List of 1943 titles with any votes, for Retro Hugo nomination

Same request as last year, for a list of 1943 titles with any votes; last year’s was very helpful:

5 March 2018:

  • > For those of us struggling with the 1943 Retro Hugo nomination form, [now 1944 for works from 1943] would it be possible to provide a list of all 1942 [now 1943] titles with any votes, sorted by average vote and/or number of votes?
  • > — Flash Sheridan FlaSheridn 08:28, 5 March 2018 (EST)
  • >> I see. Well, there is no way to do this using the regular user interface, but it can be easily done by writing a database query. Here are the matches for SERIALs:
  • >> Ahasuerus 14:43, 5 March 2018 (EST)
  • >>> Ooh, thanks, I’d overlooked some of those. — FlaSheridn 08:46, 6 March 2018 (EST)
Since it looks like this functionality could be useful in a variety of cases, I have modified the Advanced Search software to allow using "Single User Vote" as a selection criterion. It's been added to the leftmost drop-down list on the Advanced Title Search page.
Come to think of it, perhaps the second drop-down list should be modified to support ">" and "<" for numeric values. For now, you can select 1943 as the "Title Year" and individual vote values (1 through 10) as the "Single User Vote" value. Hope this helps! Ahasuerus 16:47, 18 February 2019 (EST)
Great, thanks; so the query I was looking for now seems to be “Single User Vote” ≠ 0 & “Title Year” = 1943. There are again some candidates I’d missed (largely because they were not on my Astounding or Unknown DVDs.)
FlaSheridn 08:49, 24 February 2019 (EST)
You are welcome! And yes, "Single User Vote is not exactly 0" should work. I didn't think of that. Ahasuerus 10:17, 24 February 2019 (EST)

A more manual solution, set up by JonMoss: The “1944 retro hugo nominee candidate” tag The UI was a bit tricky to figure out: Go to the main entry for a title, ignore the Add Quick Tag menu, and press the Manage Tags button.
FlaSheridn 14:25, 3 March 2019 (EST)
A bibliographic gotcha for those perusing the Amazing issue grid or digital Amazings: Stanley Weinbaum’s New Adam (which I’ve been meaning to read since Asimov recommended it in a previous millennium) is not eligible, even though it appears so in the February issue. ISFBD, unlike Amazing, notes that it’s a reprint from 1939. (Burroughs’ last Barsoom story, “Skeleton Men of Jupiter” in the same issue, does seem to be eligible however.)
FlaSheridn 15:47, 10 March 2019 (EDT)

Tais Teng's "When the Night-Gaunt Knows Your Name"

Would anyone happen to know the original title of Tais Teng's "When the Night-Gaunt Knows Your Name"? I assume it first appeared in Dutch and then in English, but that's just a guess based on the author's history. Ahasuerus 19:49, 28 February 2019 (EST)

That wasn't all that obvious: "Tovertaarten en Nachtgluiperds", part one of the "Herman en Fred" series see here.--Dirk P Broer 21:03, 19 March 2019 (EDT)


I have to hand a copy of a previously unverified pub which lists the 25 illustrations individually, something I don't normally do. The problem is that the titles seem to be based on the original source they were taken from (a 1933 weekly journal) while the titles in the actual book are basically the sentence in the book that they illustrate (i.e. they are long). My inclination would be to remove the illustrations and replace them with a single one, and leave the note stating there are 25. I am willing to type in the actual titles if it were recommended. If someone would be emphatic or a couple people agree, I'd probably go along. ../Doug H 21:46, 8 March 2019 (EST)

It would also be okay to leave the titles as they are and add a note that they (the titles) were taken from their initial publications. In any case, if someone has taken the effort to add the individual pieces of art, it'd not be okay to remove them. Stonecreek 00:18, 9 March 2019 (EST)
The source of the titles is an assumption, based on the format of the names, e.g. Pirates of Venus (Part 3 of 9) and the dating of each image to a particular week over the span of their inclusion in the serial. One of the name is actually repeated, although the book does not have the same illustration on the noted pages. Someone went to a lot of trouble to enter them, but without citing sources. These names have no meaning in the context of the book. I suppose, in an ideal state, the images should have the book captions, and the corresponding title notes should specify the journal issue. Without being able to see the originals (or images), would it be pushing it to document it that way? Consider also, that there are books of the artists work which might be entered and the images linked. ../Doug H 12:07, 9 March 2019 (EST)
I may have been the one to add these. The page numbers of the illustrations and the date of issue where they appear is in the Heins bibliography. Heins states that the caption are too long to be included in the bibliography. I'm not entirely happy with the naming convention that was used. We do have the serial in the database. I'll go ahead and import the artwork titles to those titles. We could then delete them from the Dover omnibus and add new titles named with respect to their position there while also varianting them to their original appearance. Would people prefer that? --Ron ~ RtraceTalk 19:29, 19 March 2019 (EDT)

Reviews of cover art

If an essay contains a review of the cover art of several issues of Astounding, for instance, we don't include those reviews, do we? Thanks. gzuckier 02:40, 17 March 2019 (EDT)

I wouldn't think so. Stonecreek 07:46, 17 March 2019 (EDT)
Since cover art entries are only titles without publications of just the title art, I don't think so. I think reviews can only be attached to publications. Might be worth looking into, though, as I think a review of the cover art would be a useful thing to include. At the moment, it could be included in the Note field with a link to the cover art in question. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 18:42, 19 March 2019 (EDT)
That's not correct. Review's are linked to title records, not publication records. I would have no problem linking reviews to cover art titles, provided that is the subject of the essay. However, if it is a review of something else (e.g. a novel) and the review also talks about the cover art, I would only enter one review linked to the novel. --Ron ~ RtraceTalk 19:04, 19 March 2019 (EDT)
Right you are, Ron; but in this case there are several covers put into focus, and unless there is a substantial body of text for the respective artwork, These shouldn't be included. Stonecreek 03:36, 20 March 2019 (EDT)
If you mean "we don't include those AS reviews", a review linked to a cover art record (as Ron suggests) will result in something potentially misleading, because the publication record won't state that it's a review of cover art – it will only state (e.g.) "Review: Look to Windward by Mark Salwowski • review by X", thereby appearing that Salwowski wrote the novel, not Iain M. Banks. Therefore personally I wouldn't add them as REVIEW records. ESSAYS that review cover art are arguably more related to written SF than reviews of film and TV, and already we must have thousands of those. I have no problem in adding essays that review cover art, but if the review of Astounding covers is contained within a larger titled essay then I wouldn't make work for myself, I'd just state the review contents in the note for that record. YMMV. PeteYoung 04:03, 20 March 2019 (EDT)
I am with Pete on that one - reviews are for texts, not for images for me. We are a fiction DB after all :) Annie 04:22, 20 March 2019 (EDT)

Is there a way to include a comment in a link?

Specifically in the web page field for titles. Could one, for instance, enter something like: #Scribner & Sons - Tigers and Traitors

It looks like the software strips out everything but the root of the URL, so I'm thinking not. ../Doug H 14:29, 19 March 2019 (EDT)

Sure there is: Here is a publication that cites a link to the online encyclopedia Perrypedia, but you can just as well replace 'Perrypedia' with 'Computerwelten' or any other text. Stonecreek 15:02, 19 March 2019 (EDT)
Doug asked about the title web page field and the answer is no for that. If needed, a comment could be added to in the notes field. -- JLaTondre (talk) 17:43, 19 March 2019 (EDT)
Ah, yes: I misunderstood the title link as the title field. But maybe that'd be a possibility (to put the link into the title note field? Stonecreek 03:38, 20 March 2019 (EDT)
While this is technically possible, I really would not like it being allowed - clicking on a title inside of another work or on a list of awards and so on should be leading to the record, not to whatever site the editor decided to link in the title... Annie 04:30, 20 March 2019 (EDT)
At this time the software lets you enter HTML tags in arbitrary fields, but they are not displayed correctly. For this reason (and due to security implications) HTML tags are not allowed outside of Notes as a matter of policy. There are cleanup reports -- like 55 and 56 -- that identify violations. Ahasuerus 09:07, 20 March 2019 (EDT)
I'm not looking to put HTML tags in a field, I'm looking to put additional text in a field that is being converted to HTML and have the additional text not get converted but get displayed either as part of the display text for the link or separately. We could add a comment field to the webpage, or change the code to deal with some convention but I figure this is not worth that kind of effort. I just wondered if there were something in the existing way the code deals with the webpage field that would allow the additional information. ../Doug H 10:51, 20 March 2019 (EDT)
Oh, I see. Sorry about the confusion!
The most we can do with the software as it currently exists is add a "displayed name" for a Web site. For example, consider Mary Shelley. Her Summary page displays the following links to third party Web sites: Books and Writers, Encyclopedia of Fantasy, Gutenberg, IMDB, Library of Congress,, SFE3, Wikipedia-EN. Only one of them, "", is the name of the host. The rest are "displayed names": the software is configured to display "" URLs as "Books and Writers", "" URLs as "Library of Congress", and so on. We could do something similar for "" URLs and display them as "HathiTrust Digital Library". Would that work? Ahasuerus 12:05, 20 March 2019 (EDT)
Not really. In the Shelley example, the purpose would be to comment that the Books and Writers was for biographical material, the Gutenberg was for the text of the 1907 version of Frankenstein etc. Most of these are pretty obvious and so unnecessary. The URL in my example was for a particular publication of one volume, there could easily have been six or eight links to differentiate. In your suggestion they would all be HathiTrust. It was worth asking, but not worth doing anything extra about. But interesting to learn about the "displayed names". ../Doug H 12:36, 20 March 2019 (EDT)
Doug, Are you trying to create a link inside of the notes where the text is different from the link itself? In that case, just use a standard "a" tag (see here for an example)? Or am I missing something? Or you can just add the comment after the link is closed.
Or are you asking to do that in the URL/Webpage field? If so - then no - you cannot add the link there - there are some that are being handled in a special way but you cannot have a special text instead of the standard link syntax. I would find it confusing if everyone can add whatever they want in the description there quite honestly... When I need to add something like that, I am adding the link in the notes as well and/or I am adding a note about the link in the notes. Annie 04:30, 20 March 2019 (EDT)
The specific example is The Steam House and the existing web URL/Webpage is to the source for a specific publication - Scribner's Tigers and Traitors volume II. I was just wondering if it was possible to add a comment to the link. In this particular case, it would probably be better to put the link to the source in the publication notes, but the question is still valid for other reasons. ../Doug H 09:07, 20 March 2019 (EDT)

merge won't listen to me

I notice when trying to merge two titles no matter which of the two choices I click for title and/or date, the result seems to be the same. ?? gzuckier 15:20, 28 March 2019 (EDT)

It seems to work fine for me. Here is what I get when I select one set of radio buttons and here is what I get when I select the other set of radio buttons. Ahasuerus 15:36, 28 March 2019 (EDT)
Thanks, I'll take another look. gzuckier 16:53, 28 March 2019 (EDT)

Artists for interior art

If there is INTERIORART by two different artists (each doing different illustrations), would this be entered as two separate CONTENTS with one author each or as one CONTENT with two authors? ../Doug H 23:45, 31 March 2019 (EDT)

Since these are different works, they ought to be entered separately. Stonecreek 03:01, 1 April 2019 (EDT)
Separate - this is the case where a single record for all the internal illustration does not work (but two records do) :) Annie 11:52, 1 April 2019 (EDT)

Queer Sci Fi's Flash Fiction Contest

I’ve recently entered, or entered the contents of the Queer Sci Fi's Flash Fiction Contest books. Only the contest’s fiction from the second through fifth have seen print, but to keep the integrity of the series should I create an “unpublished” record for the first contest’s winners? MLB 17:35, 5 April 2019 (EDT)

According to Template:PublicationFields:Date, "8888-00-00 is used to date publication records for books that were announced but never published", which I think is how we typically use it. Was there an announcement that promised to publish the winners of the first contest? Ahasuerus 18:05, 5 April 2019 (EDT)
Don't know, just stumbled unto this contest while browsing Amazon. Took a lot of detective work to enter and update what is now here. Just thought I would ask. If not, and I have no problem doing so, I'll just move on. MLB 22:46, 5 April 2019 (EDT)

Clarke Award: winner vs shortlist categorization

(I'm new to ISFDB, so apologies if I'm asking this in the wrong place. I tried doing wiki searches on terms like "category", "shortlist" and "winner", but couldn't see anything obviously relevant)

I've been playing with a local copy of the DB, and noticed a minor issue with the categorization of last year's Clarke winner, Dreams Before the Start of Time. All previous winners are in the "Winner" category, but this title is stuck in "Shortlist". You can see this either by visiting and scrolling to the bottom, or running this SQL query:

   select award_title, award_level, award_year, award_type_id, award_cat_id from awards where award_type_id = 13 and award_level = 1 order by award_year;

I'm not quite sure how to make this record consistent with the others via the UI (obviously doing the SQL update would be easy ;-) but more to the point, I'm not sure if this would be the right thing to do: currently the aforementioned URL states "Displaying all wins and nominations for this category." which is technically correct, but seems potentially misleading to a naive user like me who doesn't realize/spot the implications of "Winner" and "Shortlist" being separate categories. A *very* cursory search hasn't thrown up any other comparable juried awards (e.g. PKD, Campbell Memorial) using separate categories in this way either. As such, I wonder whether a better solution might be to merge all the Clarke Winner and Shortlist records into a single category? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by [[User:|]] ([[User talk:|talk]] • contribs) ErsatzCulture.

Thanks for the heads-up! I have changed the award category of this award from "Shortlist" to "Winner". Hopefully, thins look better now.
Looking at the big picture, I am not sure the way the award categories for this award type are set up is optimal. I will starts a discussion on the Community Portal. Ahasuerus 19:27, 9 April 2019 (EDT)
Thanks - will keep an eye on that section you've just added, as making that change would mean I don't have to code in a special case for this award in my personal project :-) --ErsatzCulture 20:34, 9 April 2019 (EDT)
The categories have been adjusted so you can now nix the special case :) The next publicly available backup file will be uploaded on Saturday. Ahasuerus 15:52, 14 April 2019 (EDT)

Adding unnumbered page items before existing items

Case in point: Gretchen's Wood collection by Ran Cartwright. I previously entered the contents but omitted "Acknowledgements" and "Foreword" because they were on unnumbered pages, which I was unsure how to handle. I believe I now update Pages to "[5]+198", but would I then enter these prefatory items as "[1]" and "[3]" respectively to get them to appear before the story on the first numbered page?Cjearkham 08:05, 10 April 2019 (EDT)

NM. Just found the "Sorting" field on the NewPub Help page. Cjearkham 08:25, 10 April 2019 (EDT)Cjearkham

That's the one :-) Ahasuerus 11:31, 10 April 2019 (EDT)

Removing images

I mistakenly loaded an image for the wrong publication. There was none before so this can be removed. I've looked around the Help / FAQ and can't see any reference to instructions on what to do. Do these exist and if so, where are they? Thanks. ../Doug H 12:43, 11 April 2019 (EDT)

At this time the Wiki is configured in a way that doesn't allow non-moderators to delete Wiki page. I have gone ahead and deleted the uploaded file. Ahasuerus 14:38, 11 April 2019 (EDT)
You can add {{Deletion candidate|your reason here}} to the image page and it will get deleted. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 17:11, 11 April 2019 (EDT)
My thanks, but there is still no easily-found documentation on what to do. ../Doug H 08:11, 12 April 2019 (EDT)
I've created Help:Deletion as I couldn't find any other documentation. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 15:22, 12 April 2019 (EDT)

Is "no plays" a firm rule?

"T's Culture issue, on newsstands April 14, pays tribute to the artist’s inability to unquestioningly accept the society in which she lives. For it, we asked 15 playwrights to imagine America five years into the future — in 2024." thanks gzuckier 23:22, 14 April 2019 (EDT)

Is "no plays" even a rule? Is Dracula: The Vampire Play in Three Acts a mistake? ../Doug H 08:13, 15 April 2019 (EDT)
SF plays, screenplays, movie scripts and other printed (or e-published) texts are "in". Gzuckier may be thinking of the bullet point on the ISFDB:Policy page which says:
  • Included: ... audio books, i.e. readings, but not dramatizations
Ahasuerus 08:48, 15 April 2019 (EDT)
Perhaps I was thinking of an alternate universe. thanks. gzuckier 22:51, 16 April 2019 (EDT)
We should have a Title Type "Play", probably. gzuckier 22:28, 17 April 2019 (EDT)

Is this a language?

I ran across a reference to a book I may want to catalogue, but wasn't sure how to classify it as far as language goes - it's in Pitman shorthand for an English translation of Around the World in Eighty Days. I'm leaning to English because the title on the title page is normal script and simply noting the Pitman part. Any ideas? ../Doug H 10:32, 17 April 2019 (EDT)

I would list it as English and leave a note stating it's in Pitman shorthand. Shorthand (of any type) is simply a quick way to write. It's often used in places like courtrooms, where a lot of information is needing to be recorded without time to stop proceedings to catch up. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 10:51, 17 April 2019 (EDT)

Just imagine if the title had been in Pitman though - I presume there is are Unicode values for Pitman that would be transliterated and a claim it was English. I wonder how much Pitman we have and how you'd find it. ../Doug H 11:35, 17 April 2019 (EDT)

We defer to the ISO 639.2 standard to determine what counts as a separate language for our purposes. They have a code ("sgn") for "Sign languages", but nothing for shorthand notations. Ahasuerus 15:29, 17 April 2019 (EDT)
Also, Pitman shorthand is still English. It's just a style of abbreviating words and phrases to allow speedy note taking. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 19:44, 17 April 2019 (EDT)

Python Error

I'm seeing a Python error for this title as well as its variant. I can paste the dump of the error if you're unable to reproduce. Thanks. --Ron ~ RtraceTalk 11:07, 20 April 2019 (EDT)

Looking into it... Ahasuerus 11:23, 20 April 2019 (EDT)
It turns out that we have 4 title records with corrupted synopses which result in Python errors. I am currently trying to figure out what's causing them. Thanks for reporting the problem! Ahasuerus 11:43, 20 April 2019 (EDT)
The 4 affected titles have been fixed and their synopses re-entered from the submission history table. The synopses were entered in 2007-2013, so whatever went wrong with them was presumably caused by a software bug which has been -- most likely -- fixed since then. Hopefully. Ahasuerus 14:28, 20 April 2019 (EDT)
Thanks for the speedy response, as always. --Ron ~ RtraceTalk 15:39, 20 April 2019 (EDT)

Event Horizon webzine

I'd like to enter the data for this webzine, which was active from 1998 until 2000/2001, and the archive can be found here: It had a combination of stories and non-fiction by fairly well-known writers. However, it didn't publish on specific dates or with particular issues, but would release content irregularly. What would be the best way to enter this kind of data? Gengelcox 11:59, 24 April 2019 (EDT)

Individual stories and essays have release dates (at least according to this page and this page], so just use those dates for the stories. You'll have to enter each as a chapbook with the story as the content of the chapbook and a note explaining things. I recommend including an archive link for each story. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 16:51, 24 April 2019 (EDT)

Same title/author, different stories

John S. Glasby wrote two different stories called "The Black Mirror". The one in _The New Lovecraft Circle_ is completely different from the one in _Supernatural Stories 109_ and _The Thing in the Mist_ collection. How do we split these? Cjearkham 17:29, 28 April 2019 (EDT)

I split them apart and added a title note. It would be appreciated if you could add some more distinguishing information (synopsis or quote of first lines) to each. Thanks. -- JLaTondre (talk) 17:54, 28 April 2019 (EDT)

how variant does a title have to be?

Regarding "The Girl, the Gold Watch & Everything", it's apparent there are versions with "&" or "and", with or without Oxford comma. Wikipedia says

A second comma was added to the title (after "Watch") with the second printing, and dropped again with the 14th printing.
The only English-language printing that used "and" instead of an ampersand (&) was the Coronet Books printing published by Hodder Fawcett Ltd. in the United Kingdom (1968).

Is that worth varianting, or just a pub note? Thanks. gzuckier 13:52, 29 April 2019 (EDT)

Since we are supposed to credit per the pub, per rule, each version should be separately entered & variants created. -- JLaTondre (talk) 18:34, 29 April 2019 (EDT)
ok thanks gzuckier 12:50, 3 May 2019 (EDT)

Novel-length work listed as SHORTFICTION and included in collection?

I just looked up "The Mouser Goes Below," by Fritz Leiber. It's listed as SHORTFICTION, and it appears in The Knight and Knave of Swords. But I have that book in front of me, and "The Mouser Goes Below" runs from page 111 to page 292. The pages are about 400 words long by my count, so the whole piece is about 70,000 words long. So according to Help:Screen:EditPub, it should be listed as NOVEL instead of SHORTFICTION. But (a) that seems like a big change for me to make without checking with someone first, and (b) the page for the story's title says that the story was "Originally published as two stories: "The Mouser Goes Below" in Whispers #23 (1987) and "Slack Lankhmar Afternoon Featuring Hisvet" in Terry's Universe (1988)." So I thought I should check before making any changes. Is it okay to reclassify "The Mouser Goes Below" as a NOVEL? Do I need to make any other changes if I do that? --Elysdir 23:45, 29 April 2019 (EDT)

In this case it would be best to ask (active) primary verifiers on the length, it seems. Stonecreek 23:58, 29 April 2019 (EDT)

Publication series that changed name

I have a situation where this publication series changed name, probably after first book in series. Here is a new name Difference is only in one word, publisher decided to change it for some reason. The book in original series was mentioned on covers of books in latter series. What should I do? Debolestis 14:32, 4 May 2019 (EDT)

If it was changed after only the first book, I would include the first book in the new series and place a note on the series page and the first book title page explaining what happened. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 15:35, 4 May 2019 (EDT)
Thank you!Debolestis 16:03, 4 May 2019 (EDT)

Günter Kunert's "Der Mann vom Mars"

We have a title record for Günter Kunert's "Der Mann vom Mars", but there is no publication record. According to Olaf R. Spittel's "Science Fiction in der DDR", the story first appeared in Kunert's collection Der ewige Detektiv und andere Geschichten. Wikipedia includes the following information about the book:

  • Der ewige Detektiv und andere Geschichten. Erzählungen. Berlin, DDR: Eulenspiegel Verlag. 1954.

Would it be possible to determine if any other stories in the collection are SF and create a publication record for it? TIA! Ahasuerus 11:37, 10 May 2019 (EDT)

P.S. It turns out that Spittel states that there was another SF story in the book, "Der neue Nachbar". Ahasuerus 11:45, 10 May 2019 (EDT)

I've added the one known publication for the collection: I've categorized it as non-genre, since Kunert is known primarily as an author outside of speculative fiction (it may turn out, though, that all or the majority of stories in this particular book are genre). Stonecreek 17:13, 11 May 2019 (EDT)
Thanks! Ahasuerus 17:21, 11 May 2019 (EDT)

Pulp Tales Facsimiles

Looks like I did it again, I entered a number of pulp facsimiles, like this one, and I thought I would use the cloning technique to create them, but now I can’t put them into this series any suggestions? I wouldn’t mind redoing them if need be though. MLB 06:14, 12 May 2019 (EDT)

You'll need to unmerge that publication from its title record. Then you'll need to edit both the publication and the new title record to convert them to an anthology, and put the title into the series. I should do it. --Ron ~ RtraceTalk 07:40, 12 May 2019 (EDT)

Endpaper Maps

How do I enter an endpaper map, especially when it is by a different artist than other INTERIORART items? Cjearkham 21:16, 12 May 2019 (EDT)

You add another INTERIORART record, credited to that artist. If the map doesn't have a title, then add " (map)" or " (maps)" when using the book's title to disambiguate from the rest of the interior art. And use one of the special "fep" (front end paper) or "bep" (back end paper) page numbers for the page if the location is indeed the end paper. If the location is not the end paper, but rather one of the pages before or after the main body of the publication, see this help for more details about how to number the page(s). --MartyD 22:23, 12 May 2019 (EDT)

My password is not accepted

I have not logged in for three years and when I now try I get the response "Login failed: Bad password" I have not found any way to have my password reset. I creayed a new user to ask this question. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by ErnHje (talkcontribs) .

We haven't purged inactive user accounts since ISFDB 2.0 went live in 2006, so it is most likely something.
Keep in mind that user names and passwords are case sensitive. Is it possible that you were not using the right case combination when you tried your old account? It happens fairly often. Ahasuerus 15:07, 16 May 2019 (EDT)

How does one create Ed title for magazines?

For instance, when creating new magazine, I always end up with that issue listed as the Ed title, e.g., instead of having a whole year's worth listed as the Ed title, e.g. Thanks. gzuckier 13:56, 18 May 2019 (EDT)

You end up this way because the title title is automatically generated from the publication title. You have to edit the title (or merge with an already existing one). Stonecreek 14:47, 18 May 2019 (EDT)
ah, thanks. gzuckier 20:13, 19 May 2019 (EDT)

New magazine

Trying to enter the new issue of F&SF. When I try to submit I'm told to NOT put an editor or author. When I try to submit WITHOUT an editor or author I'm told I MUST enter an editor or author. Catch 22 here.Jim 18:33, 20 May 2019 (EDT)

You are using the "Add New Magazine" on the left menu, correct? If so, place the editor in the "Author" field at the top of the page. Do not add an "Editor" record in the contents. The software will create one automatically. If you are doing that and still having an issue, please provide more details (what fields are you using and what are you setting them to). Thanks. -- JLaTondre (talk) 19:00, 20 May 2019 (EDT)
Thanks. Found it. One of the entries slipped to "Editor" instead of "Essay". Going through entry-by-entry turned it up.Jim 19:05, 20 May 2019 (EDT)

"Michael Todd"?

We currently state that Michael Todd is an alternate name used by Michael Anderle and L. A. Starkey. Unlike some other names associated with Michael Anderle and his many projects -- e.g. Judith Berens -- I haven't been able to find an explicit statement about "Michael Todd"'s physical existence or non-existence. In certain cases Michael Anderle and his team bring existing authors on board, so multiple scenarios are possible. Would anyone happen to be familiar with this case? Ahasuerus 15:10, 22 May 2019 (EDT)

As the person that added this pseudonym, "Michael Todd" is a shortening of Michael Todd Anderle's name. Many of the books that I added to this site had Michael Todd on the cover, and had Michael Todd, Michael Anderle, and L. A. Starkey on the title page, while the book would only be copyrighted by Anderle and Starkey. There were multiple variations of this combo. There is also Michael Todd by his ownsome (but copywrited by Anderle), or used to collaborate with others (including Anderle, Jr.). Considering how prolific he is, I suspect he's more of a packager (up to six 600-page novels a month) than a writer. I gave up paying attention to what he is doing now, but I don't believe Starkey is collaborating with hime anymore, or she's doing it under another pseudonym. Michael Todd may even be a house name of some kind. I only listed what I could find using Amazon's "Look Inside" feature. Everything is now as clear as mud I'm sure. MLB 23:51, 3 June 2019 (EDT)


Hi guys,

Sandra Odell is listed as having interviewed Halli Villegas here: but that was a mistake.

Here's the proof that Tyhitia Green is the author of that interview.

Thanks! —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Charlie B. (talkcontribs) .

Thanks for the information. I will make the change. -- JLaTondre (talk) 08:52, 26 May 2019 (EDT)

"Red Birds", fantasy genre? Haven't read it, but various reviews mention "supernatural occurrences" and one of the narrators is a dog.... seems fantasy to me? Thanks gzuckier 02:10, 26 May 2019 (EDT)

Adding a publication to an existing series

The pub Degrees of Separation in number 27 in the series Adventures in the Liaden Universe. However, it currently is not in the series. Editing the pub does not allow a series to be entered. How can the pub be put into the series? Bob 18:11, 29 May 2019 (EDT)

Chapbooks cannot be added to series. You need add the contained shortfiction. -- JLaTondre (talk) 18:31, 29 May 2019 (EDT)
Ah, the rest of the series are collections, this one is a single story! Thanks. Bob 21:03, 29 May 2019 (EDT)
I've done/seen done this-if there is information enough to do so, it can be given a decimal designation, or given a special designation reserved for Liaden short fiction. See how I did this for this author's series as examples. MLB 23:29, 3 June 2019 (EDT)

Review of Collections

How does one handle a review of a collection? If the review doesn't discuss individual stories, it seems obvious to just treat it as a review of the collection title, but what if it goes into detail about a few, or all the individual stories? Can it be a review of both the collection title, as well as a review of individual stories within the collection? Thanks. gzuckier 00:49, 2 June 2019 (EDT)

If multiple stories are discussed then I would list the book. If one story is discussed, but is used as an example of the whole collection, then list the book. I would only list the story if the collection is referenced as the place where the short story that is discussed, has been found, to be found, or is the source of the discussed story. MLB 23:14, 3 June 2019 (EDT)
My guideline for such cases was that there should be a substantial amount of text (a paragraph) with more than a categorizing as 'this is good' / 'this is bad' for the respective items. Stonecreek 23:30, 3 June 2019 (EDT)

Robert Moore Williams / Jongor

Robert Moore Williams wrote a number of Jongor novels, but the listing is a mess. According to the listings they are listed as both novels and novellas. And now I’ve added more, and I don’t which to merge them with. I’d like to change them all either to novellas or novels, and then merge them together, as multiple websites have stated that the paperbacks were straight reprints and not revisions. I can’t compare texts, so I don’t know. Being a trash brat from way back, I’d like to straighten these entries out. Opinions? MLB 23:08, 3 June 2019 (EDT)

Difficult. What really would be needed would be a word count (or a thorough estimate of it) for the titles. If there are reprints in book form with less than 130 pages, from experience I'd say it's safe to categorize them as novellas. Stonecreek 23:28, 3 June 2019 (EDT)
What I'll do is use the original serial versions as a rule. There is literally no consistancy on this site, with serials, Ace Doubles, and short paperbacks often being listed as both novellas and novels. The size of the type often has something to say in the conversation. As the saying goes, consistancy is the hobgoblin of ISFDB. And since I don't have the originals to check, I'll just have to make do until somebody has both and check the wordcount themselves. MLB 04:34, 4 June 2019 (EDT)
Crap, I forgot all of these were verified, I gotta get their input first. Will notify them first, no rush. MLB 04:48, 4 June 2019 (EDT)
I have the paperback reprints of volumes 1 and 3 here. There are 10 words per line. 10 times 42 lines per page is 420 words per one page of solid text. Paragraphs and dialog reduce it by approximately 10 half-lines (or 50 words) per page, which means that there are roughly 370 words per actual page.
The text starts on page 5 and ends on pages 126 and 128 respectively. 0.5 to 2 pages are lost per chapter due to the way they are separated with blank pages. Since there are 11 chapters per book, it reduces the effective page count to around 110. 110 pages times 370 words per page is 40,700 words.
In other words, they are right on the border between novellas and novels. Ahasuerus 10:23, 4 June 2019 (EDT)
So . . . being just a lowly editor with too much time on his hands, should I change the novels and put a note in the note field? MLB 18:03, 4 June 2019 (EDT)
I guess the first thing to do would be to try to figure out if the stories were expanded when they were reprinted in book form in 1970. Two of the three magazines have been verified, so we can ask the verifiers to estimate their word counts and see if they match the numbers that I posted above. I have the affected Fantastic Adventures issues in my collection, but they are hard to get to and I am not feeling well at the moment, so I'll defer to the primary verifiers. Ahasuerus 18:54, 5 June 2019 (EDT)


“Ponies”, by Kij Johnson, is listed separately as a chapbook and as a short story. They have different tags. Shouldn’t one of them be made a parent title? Thanks.--Rosab618 03:06, 13 June 2019 (EDT)

Sorry, but no! CHAPBOOK is our special trademark and was invented for publications of only one piece of shortfiction (or one poem). It's in the vein of a COLLECTION, but for the latter you have to assemble more than one piece. The one in question has the short story as content title. Stonecreek 04:46, 13 June 2019 (EDT)

The Haunter of the Ring & Other Tales

For this title the ISFDB title reads "The Haunter of the Rings & Other Tales," but my copy (and the covers shown) all have "The Haunter of the Ring & Other Tales." Can I have someone look at this to verify the correct title? Thanks. Hifrommike 16:00, 22 June 2019 (CST)

Looks like someone fixed it. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 20:43, 27 June 2019 (EDT)

Jean Roberta

My author page only lists 5 of my works of short fiction, published in anthologies, and one anthology that I co-edited: Heiresses of Russ 2015, Lethe Press. I have many more spec-fic stories in print!

What is the easiest way that I can add more titles?

- Jean Roberta (username JeanRoberta) —The preceding unsigned comment was added by JeanRoberta (talkcontribs) . 11:33, 28 June 2019 (EDT)

I assume you are referring to this page? I recommend starting here: Help:Getting_Started. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 15:03, 28 June 2019 (EDT)