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New Horizons

Hi Ersatz, letting you know that as of 1.47pm this afternoon I have an actual physical copy of New Horizons... it exists! First tried Forbidden Planet in London, who told me that much to their surprise they'd never received copies on spec. But round the corner at Foyles I found a single copy... I get the impression that Gollancz have not actively been promoting this title, more like letting booksellers know it's available if they're interested. :\ But it looks good, and Tarun's Introduction is very thorough.

I've expanded the Note and made a couple of minor spelling corrections here and there, plus there's no Interior Art in this edition. As I read the stories I'll define them more accurately as 'short story' etc. instead of just 'short fiction'. Cheers, hope you get hold of a copy soon. PeteYoung 18:39, 29 July 2021 (EDT)

Hi Pete, sorry for slow reply, I've been in the process of moving out of London the past few weeks, and today is the first time I've got a proper PC set up :-)
Thanks for the heads up - although I suspect I'm probably only ever going to be picking this one up in ebook form... ErsatzCulture 16:55, 13 August 2021 (EDT)

The Psychology of Time Travel

You primary verified a copy of The Psychology of Time Travel as 2018 UK ebook P771402 from multiple sources.

I hope you will doublecheck that the ebook copyright page (screen?) does state "Copyright © Kate Mascarenhas, 2018". Or is that from one of the other sources? I ask primarily because the US 1st ed. copyright page states "Copyright (c)2019 by Kate Flynn". I guess that is the writer's real name. Later I will submit an Author Note on the two copyright statements. --Pwendt|talk 17:53, 18 August 2021 (EDT)

Hi, I dug out my Kindle, and can confirm that the copyright page of the UK ebook matches what I'd emtered imto the pub note i.e. attribution to "Mascarenhas" rather than "Flynn".
I see that the copyright page of the UK ebook of her second book (which I don't have, but which is visible in the Amazon UK preview) also attributes to "Mascarenhas", but has a dedication to a "Peter Flynn".
Her Wikipedia page (which didn't exist when her author record was created here, but which I've just submitted an edit to add) doesn't give any clues, other than saying her father was Irish, and "Flynn" seems more of an Irish name than "Mascarenhas"? A Google search for "kate mascarenhas flynn" didn't come up with anything useful. ErsatzCulture 08:18, 19 August 2021 (EDT)
Thanks. I submitted the Author note --and fixed the first paragraph above.
Also added External links at Wikipedia. --Pwendt|talk 10:47, 20 August 2021 (EDT)

Middle-Earth capitalization

It is irrelevant how it is spelled in Wikipedia or in the sources, that falls under the regularization rules for Case (and specifically "hyphenated words have the first letter after the hyphen capitalized") unless you want to make a case for us NOT doing that for this specific hyphenated expression (and then add the explanation in any title that does not follow the rules). There are a few in the DB that are kinda wrong and need fixing (on the list that goes) but the majority of them in ISFDB follow the rules as well. Annie 13:57, 27 August 2021 (EDT)

Thanks. My interpretation of "Titles should have case regularized according to language-specific rules unless there is some specific evidence that the author intended certain letters to be in a specific case." is that if the title page has "Middle-earth", then that should win out over ISFDB case regularization though? I don't have this book - in fact I don't think I have any of Tolkien's works now - but I guess the ebook version of this pub - and thus an Amazon and/or Kobo preview - will be available in a few days... ErsatzCulture 17:01, 27 August 2021 (EDT)
Nope - the title page is not a good indication for this - it can be a house style of the publisher, it can be an editor choice or a typesetting choice because of something else. You need a better proof for the author's intentions (blog these days or a letter in the old days around that and so on) - or ALL books with the title keeping the unusual capitalization. The whole point of the rule is to ensure that if two different publisher use different capitalization, we still use the same one.
We have a few hundred titles which use a capital letter for this specific combination. Unless you are planning to make a case that we need to fix ALL of them, we regularize. Annie 17:36, 27 August 2021 (EDT)

The Gollancz Book of South Asian Science Fiction, Volume 2

Just a heads-up about this, due out in India at the end of this month. The editor tells me there may also be a UK Gollancz edition next year but it depends on how well Volume 1 was received in international territories. Fingers crossed. PeteYoung 23:56, 2 September 2021 (EDT)

Thanks. I saw it pop up in my Twitter feed, and I must confess my initial reaction was a selfish fear that it'll be another saga of having to edit the pubs to reflect repeatedly delayed pub dates... ErsatzCulture 11:28, 4 September 2021 (EDT)

Title fields

We record as it is used - see the variants on the original for example. We standardize Dr if it is part of an author name only :) Annie 14:55, 7 September 2021 (EDT)

The Book of All Skies

Don't forget ASINs for ebooks when you add with Amazon as a source. While the ISBN is there on this one, it will only lead to the generic page for all editions on Amazon :) I added it. Annie 14:59, 7 September 2021 (EDT)

Aargh, sorry - thanks for fixing. This one was an ad hoc addition that hadn't come up via my usual workflow, so I was copypasting directly from the retailer page, rather than the scraped-and-processed page generated by my tools, which is designed to match the ISFDB entry pages and thus hard(er) to accidentally miss info.
I assume because this is (seemingly) self published, it'd be harder to get future Egan books prioritized by Fixer? He has the "marque" flag set, FWIW. ErsatzCulture 14:36, 8 September 2021 (EDT)
No worries. :) It was more of a "now you are back, let's get you back to doing things on your own..." ;)
Oh, Egan is a well-known author and he comes up for review as high priority. The problem is that self-pub books tend to have really bad subjects or to come with very bad authors credits so they simply do not show up early enough or do not appear to be from one of the authors we know. So if they show up as recognizable, they WILL be in Q1 and I will catch them as soon as Fixer sees them (and I get to their window). I can see if I can bump him to my known authors program (needs to get cleaned from all we know about him before we add him on the list) after I catch up with new books. Annie 15:42, 8 September 2021 (EDT)

Devora the Death Fish

Planning to finish the edits on this one? There are two titles in a chapbook - that means you need two variants when variants are needed for language or for author name or whatever... Annie 14:16, 13 September 2021 (EDT)

Grr, it'll have to be tomorrow now, I'm afraid. And thinking about it, I suspect the Gorog one is missing a short fiction entry as well?
Can you tell I was leaving these to the end of the 2021-09-16 submissions? ;-) ErsatzCulture 14:28, 13 September 2021 (EDT)
Well, if you stop treating them like the red-headed children, they will stop being THAT annoying. Just saying :) Annie 14:41, 13 September 2021 (EDT)
I will fix them and will fix all the numbering you had been skipping for some reason. Annie 14:46, 13 September 2021 (EDT)
Thanks for sorting these out.
I avoided adding the series number, because there didn't appear to be any "official" source for them. I see that the Wikipedia page has the numbers, but (a) I don't know how accurate/definitive that might be, and (b) I had a *very* vague recollection that that list wasn't up to date when I worked on some of the earlier pubs a year or so ago - although I could be mis-remembering.
Some of the retailers do list (sub)series and volume numbers, which I've added to the title notes, but again, these don't seem to "official" insofar as they aren't on the publisher's site, nor do they appear in the pages available in the Amazon preview. The series numbers do appear on this site, which looks to be somewhat official, but again, no overall volume numbers.
By chance, I clicked on the Amazon UK for one of these, and in the preview header, that does show an overall series number, which doesn't appear on the proper product listing. Unfortunately, it says the series number is 125, which is one more than what is recorded here :-( The Wikipedia list also has it as 124, but I don't know if that indicates that Amazon is wrong, or if ISFDB has copypasted from Wikipedia (or vice versa). I want to clear up more of my UK backlog and imminent pubs before spending any time on trying to work out where the discrepancy might have originated. ErsatzCulture 08:38, 14 September 2021 (EDT)
Just look at our own series next time - once we start organizing in some way, we basically keep to it. Some series are based on author sites, some are based on numbering in some editions, some Wiki. In this case Wiki is even linked on the series page. When there is disagreement, we add notes. Annie 10:03, 14 September 2021 (EDT)

The Essential Terrance Dicks titles

You may want to add a note about the discrepancy between the cover and the title page. Always helps when someone tries to "fix" it later. :) Annie

Do you mean the "Volume" vs "Vol.", or is there something more subtle that passed me by? I'll update it shortly when I import the contents. (I had meant to do an "{ { incomplete } }" until those were added, but I forgot :-( ErsatzCulture 11:39, 14 September 2021 (EDT)
No need of incomplete if there is no FICTION yet added :) It appears as empty for the reports until the first fiction title is added. And yep - Vol. vs Volume :) Annie 11:47, 14 September 2021 (EDT)

BirthPlace and UK

These are a bit special - we need 4 layers for most of them. To cite the help page:

  • "England [or Scotland], UK" for 1801-01-01 or later dates

You missed England here :) Annie 13:35, 14 September 2021 (EDT)

Careful with the variants

This one needs to stay with the English name even on the Chinese version UNLESS you are willing to reverse the canonicals - the parent is always using the canonical. Either that or add the book in Chinese - that will allow to create the pure Chinese record as a child for this one. I moved the name of the author we did not have it for in the English record for now. Annie 14:16, 17 September 2021 (EDT)

Thanks. I'm probably not going to do any more work on the Chinese pub, but I wanted to leave enough info that anyone interested enough in this title (in either language) has less hassle digging out the info w.r.t. original pub etc. ErsatzCulture 14:29, 17 September 2021 (EDT)
Which is appreciated. But I am just saying to keep an eye on the canonical names when you do that :) It is a bit counterintuitive when the canonical is not in the author's language. Annie 14:39, 17 September 2021 (EDT)
In my defence, I pondered that when I added the bio details to the author record - it wasn't clear to me what his primary (published) language was, and at the time I wasn't sure if this collection was something that had only been assembled for the English language markets. Hopefully anything comes along in the future won't be as ambiguous... ErsatzCulture 18:48, 17 September 2021 (EDT)
:) It does not matter what the original language is for the book (not for the author form) if the canonical name here is not in the Author's language. That's what happened here. Because we do not have the Chinese book and the English names are the canonicals, we cannot have the Chinese author names on a variant or on the parent. It is one of the quirks of the DB when the author's language does not match its canonical name language - which happens with non-Latin names (if we ever add their originals, we can swap... for all I care we can swap now but I digress) and with multilingual authors. Annie 19:03, 17 September 2021 (EDT)

Leviathan Wakes

You left a question in the moderator's note for your edit to Leviathan Wakes. Changing the author doesn't re-associate the the publication to the correct title. You need to subsequently unmerge the title record and then re-merge with the correct title. I've gone ahead and done this, but didn't want you to think it was automatic. Also, blanking the second author works exactly as you expected. Thanks. --Ron ~ RtraceTalk 10:05, 22 September 2021 (EDT)

Thanks for the info - I was pretty sure there was more to do than the single edit I submitted, but I definitely didn't know any more details than that. ErsatzCulture 11:25, 22 September 2021 (EDT)

The Pantheon Series

I'd have called it "The Pantheon (C. F. Barrington)" quite honestly - a lot of series have the word "series" in them all over internet and on the official sites and/or books; we as a rule tend to drop the word the same way we drop the series name from titles. It is not unheard of to leave it on so I will leave it alone but I won't be surprised if it gets changed at some point by someone. Annie 12:36, 27 September 2021 (EDT)

I almost added an extra line onto the mod note saying I'd have no objections if someone wanted to change what I'd submitted... ErsatzCulture 12:41, 27 September 2021 (EDT)

Every Leaf a Hallelujah

Repeat after me: "New chapbooks ALWAYS require a story/poem/serial to be complete." :) Fixed here. Annie 19:57, 8 October 2021 (EDT)

Aargh, sorry - too preoccupied trying to cover off in notes whether this was speculative or not :-( ErsatzCulture 10:10, 9 October 2021 (EDT)
One thing that used to help me (now I do a few of those per day so my fingers know what to do...): when adding a new chapbook, after you paste the title at the top, scroll to the contents and paste the title there as well immediately. Then scroll back up and work through the various fields. That way you won't forget and if you space out and press submit too early, the site won't allow you until you add the author to that story. :) Annie 16:27, 11 October 2021 (EDT)
Ha, that was exactly what I did on this. I almost left a snarky mod note, but thought it wouldn't make any sense if someone other than you processed it ;-)
BTW, I assume this one was just an oversight, rather than a Fixer bug? ErsatzCulture 16:31, 11 October 2021 (EDT)
Most likely my phone rang or someone from the office pinged me for something and I forgot where I left off with this set of titles and never finished the merges. Fixer cannot do AddPub UNLESS I add the first, wait till Saturday for his DB to be updated and THEN get lucky and it recognizes it as an AddPub (50/50 chance - Amazon naming can be... interesting). So I would usually get 2-7 NewPubs for new titles which I merge once I process them - that's proven to be the most effective way for me to deal with these. 99.99% of the cases all goes well. The rest - oops. I am only human. :) Annie 16:42, 11 October 2021 (EDT)
It's not just Amazon that's inconsistent for naming (although they are perhaps the worst, I think). I have the following 8 different title variants for the same upcoming physical and ebook pubs, scraped from various sources: Terciel & Elinor / Terciel & Elinor - The Old Kingdom 1 / Terciel & Elinor - The Old Kingdom 1: The newest adventure in the bestselling Old Kingdom series / Terciel & Elinor - The Old Kingdom 1: The newest adventure in the bestselling Old Kingdom series a book by Garth Nix. / Terciel and Elinor / Terciel and Elinor - The Old Kingdom / Terciel and Elinor: Signed Edition / Terciel and Elinor: The Newest Adventure in the Bestselling Old Kingdom Series
Think I'll leave sorting out that until tomorrow :-( ErsatzCulture 16:55, 11 October 2021 (EDT)
Why do you think we never allow Fixer to just submit and self-approve :) The sources can be fun. I mentioned Amazon because this is what Fixer uses - once you go out of it, the problem multiplies. Add a few different countries and... you need human eyes to decipher. :) Annie 17:01, 11 October 2021 (EDT)
Talking about Terciel: see what I found. Well - Fixer did but still. I was even going to add the UK audio ones (I know you don't so I occasionally go on a mission to add them) but Listening Library has a single edition for both sides of the pond on this one so double ASIN it is. You seem to be running a bit ahead of me at the moment on future dates (I am just starting November) :) Annie 18:22, 13 October 2021 (EDT)
I think I've only pushed through a couple of November pubs so far, and the Nix one was just so I can get my data cleaned up ASAP (when the new database dump is available at the weekend); otherwise I'm still stumbling through October, and also trying to patch up the omissions due to my summer hiatus.
I see you've (and Fixer) have done the UK pubs for the Tad Williams book, which I had on my todo list, but also some other UK pubs that had completely escaped my attention, and would likely have not gotten added until long after the fact if it had just been down to me.
As far as I can tell, there haven't been too many delays on UK pubs of late - most seem to be Orbit, which I assume is because they're following their US arm, because I'm not seeming similar delays to books from their Hachette UK siblings like Gollancz or Hodder.
I'll probably start on some of the early Nov pubs later today or tomorrow, again just to try to get them in for the weekend database dump, which will help clear up my reports. ErsatzCulture 06:41, 14 October 2021 (EDT)
Fixer gave me the US Williams ones, I was bored and checked the UK ones for it and a few more I added. Some were entertaining. The Canongate Zamyatin is getting published here as well so I backfilled the missing uk pubs while I was around - we only had the hc here. There are a week up and down here and there on both sides but no major delays (not since last month anyway - Amazon seems more uptodate than usual. :) Annie 06:55, 14 October 2021 (EDT)
Oh, and go ahead and add whatever you want - I am still catching up with Fixer :) I won’t get much November UK pubs - I am processing the September download. So most of the uk you will see from me the next few days is me checking manually to see if anything needs adding. But even if fixer had them, less work for me if you add them. :) Annie 07:16, 14 October 2021 (EDT)

Merges when both are in the same publication

Be very careful when merging stories when both entries are in the same book as was the case in this one for the Bruise story. This ends with 2 copies of the same title record inside of the book (no other action can achieve that) - and makes the book un-editable until this ghost second story is removed. What you need to do is to always "Remove Title" of one of the two stories (before or after the merge). Just heads up. Yes - it is a bug. But... no reason not to pay attention until the day it is actually fixed. Annie 20:04, 8 October 2021 (EDT)

And never mind - the bug is fixed. You still want to be careful in such cases and remember that there is a RemoveTitle to be done - but it will error out on approval or submissions (depends on the order of actions). Annie 20:14, 11 October 2021 (EDT)

The Moorcock reprints

Remember the Moorcock reprints that were shifting in time late last year, then seemed to have been pushed to December 2021? They all apparently came out back in February: here, here and here. :) Annie 20:05, 12 October 2021 (EDT)

Hmmm; it appears I have been letting the side down, as now that I look through my processed data, I see I have scraped pages from Kobo in January that have the Feb 2021 pub dates, and for one of those pubs I even have an page scraped a couple of days after it did get released, so I should have remembered to go back and update the data here. My tools currently only really care about whether there's in ISFDB or not; perhaps it might be good to have something that I can run every week or two and report on major discrepancies e.g. it was only by chance I noticed this needed a bunch of work doing.
I did notice there were a couple of Gateway Lin Carters that I'd had data on for ages, that finally crept out during my summer hiatus, and there was also some confusion (at least in my mind) with a few Gywneth Jones books being scheduled/cancelled/coming out as tps instead - AFAIK those are all present and correct now.
If you want some new Gateway weirdnesses to keep an eye on, how about these: , or ? ;-) ErsatzCulture 11:57, 13 October 2021 (EDT)
These are not in the ISFDB DB yet so I do not need to keep track of them ;) You have fun.
The only reason I caught these was because I did my usual +1 and +2 sweep through future pubs before I start loading Fixer's. I've forgotten all about them and December was not on my radar at all until now (still is not - I am working on November). So I checked to see when are they reporting now... and realized they are out. :)
As for that update over there - when I approved it, this was what Amazon UK was reporting. Your comment when doing the update was a bit... uncalled for. Annie 16:09, 13 October 2021 (EDT)
Sorry - it wasn't meant as an attack on you (or Fixer) - I was just surprised as to how bad the data was, given it's a pub from a major publisher ~3 months out. I almost asked you if that sort of incomplete Fixer submission was something that happens often (because as I mentioned above, my tools only check for missing pubs, not inconsistent data), but when I ran a SQL query for recent UK pubs that didn't have a cover image, that pub was pretty much the only one, other than the Waterstones exclusive editions that I've submitted. ErsatzCulture 16:32, 13 October 2021 (EDT)
They do for UK books (and occasionally for US ones) but usually I have enough data from elsewhere. Fixer is often good only for an ISBN and to point me to a book - very often the only fields I do not touch are the ISBN and the cover (and sometimes the cover also needs update). That one just did not have info almost anywhere BUT seemed legit and even the Orbit site was still saying 8.99 (I think? or I am thinking about another book). So I let it in - probably should have kicked it back for a month but who knows what I was thinking exactly. I usually balk on non-cover paper books (audios are different) that close to publication but sometimes when everything else looks right, I'll let it in and deal with it in a few months on a review. Pre-publication data is always risky - there will be a book here and there that ends up... weird. Annie 16:44, 13 October 2021 (EDT)

The Last Command

Goodreads is your friend. Here is your earlier ebook edition with the same ASIN. Cornerstone Digital may be credited differently on the copyright page as we well know - Penguin Random UK had been playing fast and loose with their imprints on that) and the cover is in line with a 2020 publication. That's your missing cover and edition. Maybe a reverse image search will give you more data so we can split the two ebooks? :) It is a common thing with Amazon to keep the date of the first edition of the ebook in later ebooks (lately anyway - they used to be much better than that). When that happens, GR often has the older covers. Sometimes scrapping just the current sites of the publishers won't give you the answers you need. Annie 17:49, 16 October 2021 (EDT)

Apologies if I'm being a bit dense, but what do you mean by "we can split the two ebooks?" I thought policy was to just have one entry per ISBN/ASIN?
The second UK ebook of this title (alluded to in the mod note) is 9780307796202, which doesn't seem to exist as a separate ebook on Amazon. The Kobo product page shows a cover image with the "Essential Legends" branding, but when you click into their preview, it shows a cover with an earlier (I think?) "Legends" pub series branding - aargh....
I'm pretty sure there are similar cases for Gollancz/Gateway, where an ebook was originally published using the bog standard Gateway branding, but later "upgraded" to SF Masterworks pub series branding, but retaining the same ISBN and ASIN. Is there any policy/best practice for handling the pub series on those?
[I've been vaguely aware for a while there are a bunch of UK Star Wars ebooks that aren't in the database, but was finally shamed into action when Amazon did a bulk sale page for several of them last week, and pretty much every single one of them showed up via my browser extension as needing to be added. Wishing I'd been offline that day now :-( ] ErsatzCulture 18:24, 16 October 2021 (EDT)
The policy is to keep a single entry as long as there are no material differences (so we do not chase file versions but we DO want valid different information). We record cover artists, pub series and contents; if any of that shifts, it is a different book so we need a separate entry - otherwise you either miss the story that was added in the 2018 book or you add it to a 2016 book or you miss a cover credit. Republishing an ebook into a new pub series? Clone and add a new one with the new publishing series and with the date when it happened if known or with 0000-00-00 and explain the difference in the notes of both. That's part of the challenge with older ebooks these days - Amazon used to keep them all separate then for marketing reasons (don't show "cannot be bought anymore" to people) they collapsed the pages); GR had been good as a repository if you use it carefully (aka get a proper nose for vaporware). That's why I can be that insistent on dating notes sometimes - knowing when the data was pulled gives us some baselines for covers and such.
Look Insides are not always connected to the same edition - in either Kobo or Amazon, ebooks or paper. That's why they need to be used very carefully -if they do not match the entry you are seeing outside, there are at least two books in there and you cannot make a Frankenstein of them both. Annie 19:16, 16 October 2021 (EDT)
OK, so you list "cover artists, pub series and contents" as criteria to merit a new record, but so that it's 100% clear in my mind, what about changes in cover images? (In cases whether a cover change doesn't indicate any pub series, and we don't have a known artist for either the old or new cover - and ignoring for the moment cases when the image shown on Amazon doesn't match either the Kindle browsing image, or the image within the ebook proper.)ErsatzCulture 09:22, 17 October 2021 (EDT)
If you have the ebook and want to verify it, would you verify a book with the wrong cover or even worse, with a credit for an artist where your book credits someone else? Just because we do not know the artist does not mean that the book (or an external site) does not have a credit which shows up down the road. Annie 19:54, 17 October 2021 (EDT)
I've just submitted this 10 year old ebook, with a longwinded note about what I think are the prior covers. Would that have been better done as 3 separate pubs, do you think? (Note: I doubt I'll be doing many pub notes to that level of detail in the future, but it seemed a good example to work on to use as an example in this conversion.)ErsatzCulture 09:22, 17 October 2021 (EDT)
If you could scrape enough information for all three? Possibly. When you cannot, a note is better than nothing. Annie 19:54, 17 October 2021 (EDT)
One other quirk that I'll throw into the mix: there are cases where new covers exist, but which aren't currently known here, with a contributing factor being that the new covers have been applied to old ISBNs, so it's not as obvious to Fixer etc that something needs adding. Maybe this is a bit too philosophical, but how concerned is ISFDB about trying to record all known covers? ErsatzCulture 09:22, 17 October 2021 (EDT)
And here is where you fall into the common programming fallacy of "what automation can do is what a thing can do". Fixer (and any other scrapper that uses ASIN/ISBN as keys) will never find a reprint under the same ISBN/ASIN - all of them will look like one book even if it finds them in different years - and when they serve it, unless they are designed to collect all info and not overwrite, you will get what is the current version (Fixer does have caches so dead ASINs that are removed from Amazon are actually holding old data if they had not been re-updated - adding older ebooks from him is... fun). Once it is added to the site, for the automation tools, we have the ISBN/ASIN so... job done. That's what the tools can do. It does not matter if we are talking about the 35 printings of the mass market paperback of LOTR (yes, we want 35 pubs even if nothing changed but the printing line on the copyright page), an ebook, a self-published POD novel which changed cover 3 years in (we really do not want to track batches or even individual books dates for these - there in lies madness but material changes need to be tracked) or a digital audio record which changed its cover because a movie is coming. As long as the ISBN/ASIN is the same, the tools are blind.
ISFDB is based on publications. Which means that when you PV, we want a record describing your copy. When not adding from a book, it gets harder to do that so we do our best. Do we want the separate covers? Yes! They can get an artist and connect to an international edition somewhere thus giving us info (or even to a local edition of something else). However - it is not trivial to track down versions of ebooks (and downloadable audio books) so I date my notes and only go on a hunt when there is a discrepancy which is impossible - a 2002 ebook with a cover from 2016 movie, a pub series which started in 2020 on a 20114 ebook, a cover which belongs to the 2014 and later reprints on a 2010 ebook (although these can be the hardest to clean so sometimes all you can do is to add a note that most likely this is a later cover but no data can be traced).
So the short answer? Yes - we do want the different ebooks. But we can settle for at least making sure that the records we have do not contain impossibilities. Annie 19:54, 17 October 2021 (EDT)

(unident) So let's talk about this specifically. No, it cannot stay the way it was added. This is a 2021 cover. It was added at some point in 2021. If you use that cover, this ebook needs to be dated 2021-00-00 (because it is 2021, had you submitted it next year, it would be 0000-00-00). That's exactly the kind of impossibilities I am talking about. If this cover gets a credit for its artist, this ebook will send the credit in 2010 which maybe years before they started working. Not to mention that it uses a title for the novel which had not been used until later days (you have similar issues with authors changing names). I will approve it and update the date and add some more notes in a bit -- but it cannot stay with this title and this cover as a 2010 book. Although looking at the mess this title is, there is some more splitting to be done (The Novel vs no substitle) so I will fix that first. Leave the submission as is - I will process it either later today or tomorrow (I put it on hold). Welcome to backfilling non-physical books. It is fun here. Not. :) Annie 20:02, 17 October 2021 (EDT)

The Hand of the Sun King

Please be careful with you work with cases where all copies are from the same pseudonym. If someone had approved this, the author of this would have been changed. So you will end up with a mess - both the parent and the variant with the same author name AND no parent to go into the canonical. Fixing it would have required more steps: Merging these two titles and creating a new parent or restoring the parent and splitting the offending publication.

Just because you can edit the title does not mean you always should (the ability to edit means that only one publication has this title; the system has no way to know if that is because it is a single pub or if we still need this title) - check for this special case (happens a lot when people publish some books only under one pseudonym). Let me know if you want me to fix it or if you want to try again. Always fun with pseudonyms. Annie 19:57, 16 October 2021 (EDT)

Ngggh - goes off to bang head against wall repeatedly...ErsatzCulture 08:29, 17 October 2021 (EDT)
You are having a bit of a blind spot with pseudonyms and variants. I try to keep an eye for that when you adding books but when I am tired, I tend to assume that you had looked at the title page and so on. I think I need to stop assuming that and see if we can get that to be stopped before it gets approved. Annie 19:33, 17 October 2021 (EDT)
PS: One thing that helps in reducing this kind of mistakes is to use ClonePub instead of AddPub. You can change all the fields on a Clone that you can on an Add. Yes - you need to make sure you actually do not leave the old data but... it is not different from adding on a blank canvas. Annie 22:11, 17 October 2021 (EDT)
... anyway, I've now submitted a new edit for this.ErsatzCulture 08:29, 17 October 2021 (EDT)
Approved and finished the unmerged as well so it does not popup on the reports tonight (where there will be a chance that someone fixes it by messing up the parent...) :) Annie 20:05, 17 October 2021 (EDT)
Are there any Wiki pages that you know of that cover the gotcha you describe? I've just looked at Help:How_to_update_a_publication, Help:How_to_enter_works_published_under_an_alternate_name, Help:How_to_record_an_alternate_name and others, but they all seem to hover around the area, but not really covering the specifics of this particular case. (Unless my comprehension skills are failing me, which isn't an impossibility right now...). ErsatzCulture 08:29, 17 October 2021 (EDT)
Not really because neither of them have a "how to fix a book I added under the wrong author" section. That issue only exist when you add a book to a parent (or very rarely special non-pub variant but I don't think we have a lot of these after the cleanups) which has no pubs on its own and you need to change the author of the pub later. Which usually means one of the authors who use a special name for some specific books (Tom Holt is another example) Maybe we need a "how to fix what I messed up" help page :) Annie 19:33, 17 October 2021 (EDT)

Uncanny ability

You have the absolutely uncanny ability to update a title record during a PubEdit when you should not and NOT to update when you should. The extra "t" had been exorcised from the title record as well]. :)

Plus added the story (As indicated in your note) and pub series (which is clearly visible on the cover, mentioned on the publisher site and we have it on other books here. Thanks for adding it! Annie 01:07, 20 October 2021 (EDT)
So the same scenario as the Tor Essentials I've been updating the past couple of years then e.g. 1, 2, 3, etc? :-P ;-)
I didn't actually see the corner flash on the cover until I submitted the edit - my tools don't display the Amazon covers, out of a paranoia that Bezos & co might notice if I'm making a bunch of HTTP requests for images that don't have refer(r)er headers from an Amazon site or associate/affiliate. Usually I can rely on any pub series being mentioned in the title or publisher fields, but not in this case (or the Tor Essentials pubs, going off a quick glance at a couple of the product pages on Must confess that given paranormal romance is not my cup of tea, and it was fairly late when I submitted that, I didn't bother following up further :-( ErsatzCulture 07:59, 20 October 2021 (EDT)
Sure - happens to us all - the human condition. You get a second set of eyes to look at your submissions. My second set is the same as the first one. ;) Annie 08:11, 20 October 2021 (EDT)

Your UK eye is needed

Had you seen/scraped anything about 9781529358087? I see it in Chapters Indigo in Canada and on but that does not feel like an international edition - it is the only hc from Hodder for this and internationals are not hc unless there is another hc out there in my experience... Because Australia has their own editions, this one is annoyingly not on their sites - they are a gold mine for international editions sometimes... Any ideas? Annie 04:51, 20 October 2021 (EDT)

Short(ish) answer: no, all the pubs I'm aware of are now in the database.
Longer answer: This was a bit of a funny one. From memory, the Australian Harper/Hamish Hamilton pubs were showing up on Amazon last year, both ebook and physical. At some point the AU ebook became no longer available, and then a UK Hodder ebook was available around December 2020. The UK Hodder tp was available some time in early 2021 - so good fun for working out when it might be eligible for awards - but I don't ever recall seeing anything regarding a hc. I do have a very vague recollection of looking this title up on a US site - B&N probably? - to try to get a feel for which editions might have been licenced for which territories, but again, I don't think it was a hc. (Very very hazy recollection that could easily be wrong: I think I might have seen something that implied Hodder Studio were aiming to get international rights, rather than just UK/Commonwealth, and so if it was showing up on US sites I'd have added in a US price.)
(I'm also mildly puzzled by the fact that when I just went back to my scraped data for the AU tp at UK stores, both Amazon and Waterstones claim a 2021-01-01 pub date for that AU pub in the UK, which isn't remotely plausible. Not that that's relevant here.)
I've done some perfunctory searching and trawling through sites, just on the offchance I get served some different content to my UK IP address than you're seeing, but no joy. I couldn't see any indication on Twitter of a September 2021 pub. Also, I think the info for this title's pubs on Goodreads is wrong - it has the Sep 2021 Hodder Studio 2021 hc and a Jan 2022 Hodder Studio tp. The latter is the UK tp that came out in Spring 2021 - based on matching ISBN - of which I'm 99% certain photographic evidence of its existence on Twitter.
So sorry, I can't help you. I can offer you details of a bunch of other mystery hc pubs that appear to have been cancelled in favour of (Demy?) tps, if you'd like to waste even more time on wild goose chases though? ErsatzCulture 07:46, 20 October 2021 (EDT)
Fixer found it, it looked off so I figured I will come ask if you know something after my google-fu kinda failed but there were enough vestiges to make me wonder. :) And now Indigo shows as not available as well so vaporware it is. Sorry for bugging you about it. This kind of messes, I usually send it back to sleep for another month and kill it next month if there is no movement but this one looks dead and buried so off it goes. Annie 07:54, 20 October 2021 (EDT)
Goodreads gets its pre-load from Amazon directly. So that's why theirs are also messed up -- they will eventually get sorted but that's one of those cases where GR needs to be read carefully. Happens only with newish pubs. The older ones have other problems. :) Annie 07:55, 20 October 2021 (EDT)

The Haunting Season

This is 9 days after the US editions. Which means that the stories now have a date that will need adjusting :) In such cases:

  • Add the contents to the first edition


  • Use the first edition date on each line so that we can reimport cleanly.

I will fix these now but keep that in mind please :) Annie 16:47, 21 October 2021 (EDT)

Hmm, sorry about that. I almost added a mode note about the other pubs, to say that I'm 99.9% sure that they have the same content, but as I don't have access to them, I wasn't going to import/export those stories over. (IIRC you'd once left me a note a while ago about being careful about presuming all pubs of an anthology or collection had the same content?)
Is there any better way to go about this sort of thing, where one editor can document the contents of an original anth/coll, but where the title date might be earlier than they can be 100% confident about? (In this particular case, Kobo US does let me access a preview of the US ebook, but that might not always be the case?) ErsatzCulture 16:54, 21 October 2021 (EDT)
Ping a friend on the other side of the pond - I am always happy to assist if you need me to check a US version of something :) If we had no access to the US book, then what you did was not wrong. Although for this specific anthology, I would have been shocked not to have matching contents - no UK/US spelling differences in any title and it is specially curated one. As long as it was in just one version, it was an easy fix. But if it had been then imported in the other UK one, the date changed would have needed to be done one by one (or RemoveTitles, redate, Import again sequence)
In general - people add stories to the copies they have (so whatever version they have) or when they want to help with empty books (so they start with the oldest), we fix whatever is needed later on. But as you are loading new books as an auxiliary to our robot and not your own books (or loading a complete author or bibliography) and I know you WILL import/clone based on this one, things are a bit different with your additions. Thus the note. :) Annie 17:07, 21 October 2021 (EDT)
TBH, I wouldn't ordinarily have bothered looking into the contents on this one, as the subject matter isn't anything that's to my taste. However, as it was an apparently uncredited anthology from a Big 5 imprint (at least the UK version; I don't recognize the UK publisher), I thought it might be worth investigating to see if the preview gave any hint towards the editor(s). It didn't, but as I'd already gone that far, I thought I might as well at least document the contents. ErsatzCulture 07:20, 22 October 2021 (EDT)
But you did :) And you do, there are things to consider - so I dropped a note explaining it :)
I was surprised to see Sphere grabbing that one quite honestly. The 8 names on the cover kinda tell you that there is a chance that there won't be a real editor - not a credited one anyway. While one may emerge, the title page will usually carry all 8 names. There are a ton of these anthologies in the States - where authors' collectives put books together. Pegasus Books and their Crime imprint are not a small publisher but they are nowhere near Top 5 (or 20) and they are not a specialty publisher - they do publish speculative fiction but most of theirs is outside of our world. But then the US was never really as reliant on the specialty big publisher as UK is - a lot more publishers show up in our field. Annie 11:42, 22 October 2021 (EDT)

ClonePub is your friend

Had you used it here instead of AddPub, you would not need to deal with me reminding you about it.

AddPub is awesome for Novels with no essays in them or when introductions change. Omnibuses, chapbooks, collections and anthologies do a lot better with ClonePub - less things to remember to come back and finish. :) Annie 02:00, 23 October 2021 (EDT)

Uhh, I'm afraid this was a case where using ClonePub didn't cross my mind, because I was preoccupied with trying to distinguish this new pub from other similar deluxe LotRs that I've accumulated data on, but which aren't currently in the database e.g., not helped by the way the various sources label these things inconsistently, which made it a pain to cross-reference sources to ensure what I did have seemed accurate. Hohum...
I know I didn't respond a couple of days ago when you raised my lack of use of ClonePub - I must confess I'm a bit wary of it, after having to fix a bunch of entries, whether originally submitted by me or others, where some unwanted data from the original source hadn't been removed or updated in the cloned pub. Whilst the sort of errors I've introduced by using AddPub are maybe more effort to fix than the sort of errors that can creep in from a lazy ClonePub, they are often easier to spot, at least within the context of my scraping tools. e.g. I usually realize I've added a pub under the wrong author variant when I sync up with the weekly database dumps, and my tools still report the added pub as unknown-to-ISFDB, because it hasn't reconciled to the expected author.
And using AddPub on omnibuses and chapbooks adds steps that you sometimes forget. Which was my point. Either way works - i am trying to help to get less reliant on someone to fix what you are adding. Read again what I said for when ClonePub is not good. 80% of what you are adding are novels with no intros and so on - where it does not matter. And mistakes are introduced regardless of the tools - bad imports, bad clones, bad adds. :) Annie 16:23, 23 October 2021 (EDT)
BTW, I suspect this isn't something that'll be applicable to many pubs, but for something like this that's got a bunch of extra content that may or may not be original, would it be reasonable just to import the core content (i.e. the 3 novels in this case), and just { { incomplete } } to cover the rest? ErsatzCulture 12:20, 23 October 2021 (EDT)
Yes. Or just import the main 3 novels even without incomplete. If/when someone verifies, they can add what else is missing. We are a fiction dB - of you get the fiction in, we have the basics. Annie 16:23, 23 October 2021 (EDT)

A Curse So Dark and Lonely: The Complete Cursebreaker Collection(Box Set)

So how did you come with this abomination of a title here? Either you have a source or you use what is on the title page (or the cover if no cover page is available). We do not create titles out of the air or add (Box Set) - not even with a space in front of it - out of nowhere. So... the source for that title? Annie 19:24, 24 October 2021 (EDT)

Pub note that I wrote: 'It is unclear what the precise title for this boxed set is, but all of the above sources list it as "A Curse So Dark and Lonely: The Complete Cursebreaker Collection".'
"A Curse So Dark and Lonely" is what seems to be plastered all over the box, but as that's the same title as the first book, I retained the bit after the colon for disambiguation, even though it's crap IMHO.
I'm more than happy for you to change it to whatever you want, although a glance at the edit history indicates you might want to discuss this further with the moderator who edited what I originally submitted... ErsatzCulture 19:34, 24 October 2021 (EDT)
:) Yeah - that is my next stop. We don't retain just to disambiguate - if it is nowhere on the book, it gets dropped. Annie 19:41, 24 October 2021 (EDT)
So looking at the ebook's Look Inside on Amazon UK , it has the long title on its cover image but if you look at the title page under it, it is back to the short title "A Curse So Dark and Lonely" - so that one will require a note when we add it but that's about it. The paper boxset has only a cover (because it is a box set so no unified title page and it is just "A Curse So Dark and Lonely" there). So I'd say that our title here should be "A Curse So Dark and Lonely". That way we won't have a separate variant for a made-up title which noone ever printed on a title page/box cover as well. Thoughts? Annie 19:56, 24 October 2021 (EDT)
PS: The US one also just became A Curse So Dark and Lonely now. Next time the US record looks weird and I've added it, ping me - don't work around it. There was a cover issue with that one (thus my note for lack of cover and lack of title page) - Bloomsbury did not have a cover and these sets have no title pages because of what they are - so I was reluctant to use solely Amazon's cover - those had changed before. But I also make stupid mistakes - and fix them when someone stumbles on them - or when I find them later. I hate boxsets some days (e- or paper ones) (and I especially hate them pre-publication). :) Annie 23:02, 24 October 2021 (EDT)
No answer so I approved the variant for now. It should be out today so let's see if anything else pops up as a different cover or something. :) Annie 18:32, 28 October 2021 (EDT)
Sorry, although I knew you had the edit on hold, I didn't realize you were waiting on me (as opposed to some other findings) to respond, as your follow-up comment seemed to cover everything. I don't have any strong opinions on how to title this - pretty sure it's not something I'm ever going to have a physical copy of in my hand ;-) - so I'm happy to go with whatever you want. (I submitted it as a variant of the US title, because per your note on that US title, it was something of a placeholder based on the US product listings, whereas the variant title I submitted did seem to be consistent across UK sources, even if the actual physical object may use something else entirely.) ErsatzCulture 07:05, 29 October 2021 (EDT)
Well - I asked for thoughts :) I still think we should use what is on the cover for the paper boxset but either way works - the note explains the titles so there is no confusion on what comes from where. Do you have enough scraped for the UK ebook one or should I just add it? I added the US one today (and it turned out to be the first of the bunch so far) so may as well get all of them in and be done with them. Box sets. Always a mess. :) Annie 07:34, 29 October 2021 (EDT)
I hadn't been aware of the ebook omnibus until after I'd submitted the tp version, but I now have 3 sources for it. (I recently added Bloomsbury to the publishers I have custom scrapers for, so that'll hopefully improve and increase the submissions I do for them.) I was going to wait until after the weekend database dump becomes available though - if you don't get round to that UK ebook before then, I'll submit it sometime in the next few days. ErsatzCulture 07:51, 29 October 2021 (EDT)
I might just clear the whole set today - from the looks of it the UK ebook is the earliest and it has the first novel title on its title page - so I need to reverse variants. Thanks for checking. Annie 07:59, 29 October 2021 (EDT)

{unindent} Flagging up this submission, just in case anyone wants to go through all this fun again... ;-) ErsatzCulture 08:56, 10 November 2021 (EST) EDIT: squinting at the preview image, it does have "WoT Box Set 1" across the top of the box, so maybe it should be varianted? ErsatzCulture 09:02, 10 November 2021 (EST)

The submission you flagged is the publication for Cytonic. I have a feeling you did not mean that. :)So which submission/publication are you talking about? Annie 12:32, 10 November 2021 (EST)
Ah, the joys of copy & paste on Linux - the summary on the edit did namecheck it, but it's this that I meant. ErsatzCulture 13:52, 10 November 2021 (EST)
So let me see if I get this right. You have a box set with a cover and no suspicion that this is not the final cover (none of your notes says so). Instead of using what the cover says you want to use naming from a secondary source and you agonize over which one of them to use. Are we a bibliography site which describes books or did we change to something else overnight? :)
We use a title page. If a title page cannot exist (audiobooks, paper box sets), we use the cover as it is the only physical piece of the book that has a title on it that belongs to the set usually. If and only if the cover is not available or it is suspect (stock or old cover for example) and the title page cannot be seen/does not exist, we default to a secondary source for the title/author form and we always name that source in the record (and if we name multiple sources and they disagree, we clarify what piece of information comes from where). And we make a variant for as small a change as a comma or a 1 vs I - let alone for Boxed for Box. You know all that - you DO all that already usually. Why do we have this conversation here - it's not even the full moon (I actually did check...)? :) I put this submission on hold for now and will deal with it a bit (need to step away for a bit) - no need to redo it, I will clear it. But when I said "Clone is your friend", I did not mean "so use it even for titles do not match". And I've mentioned that the boxed sets are the bane of my existence, hadn't I? :) Annie 14:16, 10 November 2021 (EST)
I flagged this one up because of the ambiguities - I grabbed 3 different variants across the various sites I scrape. Up until quite recently, Hachette had it as "The Wheel of Time Boxed Set I" and seemingly only switched to "Box Set 1" as it got close enough to pub date for me to submit this. (I don't have historical records of the cover/box image, perhaps that has always been the same?)
I don't want to create work for you, but given from your prior strong opinions ;-) in this talk item, I thought it best to try to bring it to your attention, as it seemed to be a not dissimilar situation. (My recollection at the time I submitted this edit was that you were vehemently against having "Box Set" in titles, although re-reading your first comments in this talk item, I see that recollection was faulty.) ErsatzCulture 17:24, 10 November 2021 (EST)
I am against adding "Box Set" to a title when the words do not appear on the cover of the said paper boxset. Same way as I am against adding "Cucumber" to that same title for example. :) I'll fix this one. Hachette can call it "Our new WOT Set" on their site if they want. Until they put that on the cover, it is irrelevant. Yes - that is a pain for automation but that's why we do not load books automatically from sources. And my "why are we talking about this" comment was a tongue in cheek way to say "It has cover. The Cover has words. We use the words." not a real question on why you posted about it. :) Annie 17:34, 10 November 2021 (EST)
The funny part is that the publisher actually calls it exactly how they named it on that cover so had you used that... Approved, renamed, unmerged and then varianted. :) Annie 21:46, 11 November 2021 (EST)

The Surprising Days of Isla Pembroke

  • 0000-00-00 means "We know it got published, we just have no clue when"
  • 8888-00-00 means "It was announced, it looked legit and appeared everywhere but it never made it out".

I swapped the 0s to 8s here. If we ever find out that it WAS published, we can always change that but either we trust the two sources that say it was (and use the date from them) or we declare it unpublished and it gets 8s. Annie 17:39, 31 October 2021 (EDT)

Sigh - I was aware of having these two different special values, and when I'd submitted unpublished pubs in the past, I'd always gone to the relevant wiki page to check I was using the right one, but on this pub I completely forgot to think about/check that :-( Sorry....
Just on a similar topic, I was planning on submitting this Hachette hc (also found here and here), which I suspect has been canned in favour of a Demy/Royal tp out on the 11th. Unlike the Isla Pembroke book, the hc doesn't seem to be listed on the publisher's site, but also it doesn't have Waterstones marking it as cancelled. Any thoughts? Having it priced at £30 for a 400 page non-fancy edition makes me wonder if it's maybe been switched to be an exclusive from somewhere like Goldsboro Books, but I've not been able to track anything down as yet e.g. to definitively prove or disprove it came out on the 28th.
Also, I saw you added a bunch of the Penguin Brian Jacques Redwall books from mid-September. I had them on my TODO list, but I'd only been going through them very slowly, as some - but not all - seemed to be suspiciously out-of-stock everywhere I looked, even though they'd only been out barely a month. I don't have any details as yet - I was planning on finishing off any of the missing ebooks (I think there are a couple) before trying to fathom the status of the tps. ErsatzCulture 20:20, 31 October 2021 (EDT)
I did a sweep on all AddPub paper books that Fixer had for 2021 in Q1 with 978 ISBNs last week (which netted me 500 submissions, most of which became books - there are "hidden" AddPubs in the NewPubs that we cannot match without a person looking so there are more UK books in there) - that's where the Redwall books and some other UK oddities came from. We shall look and see - I have a suspicion that most will show up in other countries as well but we shall see. All of them were on the publisher site and looked clear so in they go. If it turns out that there is something weird with them, they can be edited. As it is - they can be bought, they are published and they seem legit - that's the best I can check without spending 3 days per book :)
My rule is that if it looks iffy, I skip it for a month or 3. If it still look very iffy, I kick it out. Yes, there is some value in adding cancelled ISBNs but... people play loose with those (they cost money) and if they ever reuse it, it becomes a mess. Less likely to happen with the big publishers but still. So I'd put that on the back burner and check in 3-4 months if a decent search finds it. You should be getting an idea of how a search looks like when a book never made it compared to an international compared to a normal book compared to a rare/limited edition. Not tools based search - a normal set of google searches for ISBN10 and ISBN13 - tools are great but they look at some places only; books tend to show up in random places - reviews on newspaper sites, blogs, someone's Instagram, a public facebook post, twitter - you name it, it may help. Then you have a source to use for the book being out - and once you get one, it gives you ideas how to look for more.
The 8 vs 0 thingie - the easiest way I had found to remember is to think of second printings. These get 0s (they exist, we do not know when). That leaves 8 for "did not make it" and 9 for "well, that went somewhere in the future - still looks like it is making it but who knows when" - useful for books which keep getting pushed over and over and over. The less 9s we have, the better. Same for 8s if you ask me - I won't add a 8888 book but I won't delete one that needs to become an 8. Annie 20:40, 31 October 2021 (EDT)
I was going to follow up more fully tomorrow, but I just noticed this, which I'm not thrilled about e.g. compare to Waterstones or Browns. Given that the WorldCat record lists a different publication year to the publisher, I am dubious that it should take precedence over all the contradictory evidence I put in the note, which was unceremoniously removed.
Addendum, I see that when you filter the WorldCat record to just that particular pub, only one library in Germany claims to have it, and when you follow the link to their site, they now disclaim any knowledge... ErsatzCulture 21:27, 31 October 2021 (EDT)
(typing while you were updating so I won't edit - even though you did find the Germany thing). Talk to Zapp and the moderator who approved this. The OCLC is a stub with no libraries holding for this edition 6 months after supposed publication except one in Germany and they probably pre-loaded. BL has not heard of it. No British store I can find has it - which means that it was either very limited (which there is no indication of or an international). Looking at the internationals:
UK books that look like that on search a few months post publication are vaporware in my experience. It should have never been approved that way. Even if it was approved, a LOT of your note should have been retained because it was still valid. Except that my guess is that Zapp checked the publisher site (Penguin is kinda notorious for never cleaning up cancelled editions in my experience), OCLC (without checking for the specific edition holding and did not even glance at the year - in the very least this should have never been secondary verified without a note explaining the year difference between OCLC and our record) and Goodreads (without scanning for specific reviews for THAT edition) and just decided to "fix" it and the approver never checked through UK sources or that the OCLC number is indeed valid and matches what we have.
Or post on the Moderator board if you rather not take it to them directly. Annie 21:35, 31 October 2021 (EDT)
Thanks, I'll follow up with them.
I went off on that tangent because I was going to use that pub as example of Penguin UK's site not being reliable w.r.t. cancelled books - but it seems you were more than well aware of that already :-) I got distracted when I saw that the one pub I'd entered - there are at least another 3 that are ISFDB-relevant and could/should be added - had lost all my notes about it seemingly never being published, hence the rant above ;-) (My suspicion is that this pub series was supposed to commemorate an anniversary, but due to delays, Penguin silently gave up on it. ErsatzCulture 07:33, 1 November 2021 (EDT)
You know how to get the old notes, right? Look at the edit before the last which changes the same field. :) Plus is minus and so on but they are there and we can copy them back if needed. Does not make that better but…
2 years of close association with Fixer’s future books including the nightmare of 2020 when schedules went crazy kinda got me some idea of where to look for things. Some still slip - sometimes because I mess up, sometimes just because things are not always predictable. And that series planning got crazy with COVID - so not surprised that it went all weird. :) Annie 07:47, 1 November 2021 (EDT)

The UK pbs

There are a few of the verifiers still around so check with them what they are holding for these 2012 Orbits. I do seem to remember seeing some real pbs out of them as late as 2010-2011 though (not sure if reprints or new -- that's when I moved so I was not getting as much access to UK books) so some of them may be legit. Annie 15:15, 1 November 2021 (EDT)

Yeah, I clicked on a couple of the other pbs, and one was a reprint of a 199x novel, which struck me as plausible. This probably isn't something I'm going to prioritize; I noticed it by chance when adding the UK ebook for that title.
One thing I might have a look at is querying the DB for cases where have multiple pub records that share an ISBN but have different formats - I don't see anything in the cleanup reports for that? Are there legitimate cases where the same ISBN could be used on different formats? ErsatzCulture 15:27, 1 November 2021 (EDT)
I had not gone back to 2012 with these - I occasionally work through a year or so of UK non-verified pubs reported as pb (with most of them requiring an update. Part of that was also a Fixer problem (or its handlers before me) - the switch of the default from pb to tp in UK in the first decade of this century kinda got missed so a lot of pbs were added because of that.
Yep - unfortunately there are - especially in the non-English markets. Things can be weird sometimes. It should not be done but... And you have ebook/tp sharing ISBNs very often from smaller publishers (some play by the rules and have 2, some just leave the ebook without ISBN and some say on the copyright page that this is the ISBN for both). Still may be worth looking through them if you exclude ebooks - we can always ignore the legitimate ones. :) Annie 15:51, 1 November 2021 (EDT)

A reminder on type changes

You cannot just change the type of a TITLE record, you also need to change the attached publications' types. So this should have been followed by this or you should have done them both from the Publication (and then edited the title to add the content and so on fields. Changing just the one leaves the DB in a bad shape. Thanks! Annie 14:43, 4 November 2021 (EDT)

Thanks. Am I right in thinking/hoping that either this and/or this report would have picked up on this? Obv. it's better to have everything understood/done properly in the first place, but I'll feel better knowing there's at least something of a safety net to catch any screwups I might make. ErsatzCulture 15:54, 4 November 2021 (EDT)
The second and it did - that’s how I found it - I am not checking every edit on the site. :) The first is for the titles themselves. But the reports are there to help omissions which happen now and then - not to allow us to let things always fall down.. You have a pattern around changes like that (when to change what and where) so I will keep reminding you until you remember to always check both records. :) Annie 16:08, 4 November 2021 (EDT)

Brave New World

Done. --Zapp 10:53, 6 November 2021 (EDT)

World's Edge

The HTML problem here was relative paths - the Notes cannot contain relative paths (starting with /cgi-...) :) Annie 00:14, 14 November 2021 (EST)

Or maybe not - we have a few of them although I wonder if they were ignored or too old to register - something else was ailing it maybe. I will keep an eye to see if it gets flagged tonight. But using relative paths may backfire anyway so please do not do that. :) Annie 00:29, 14 November 2021 (EST)
So I see you've changed both of the links to be the full URLs :-(
I'd deliberately started doing relative URLs in the past couple of weeks, because it strikes me that these are most future proof when it comes to all the changes that have been made to support the switch from HTTP to HTTPS. Whilst I'm sure that whenever any HTTP->HTTPS switch occurs, there'll be some sort of automatic redirection (if needed), you're still at risk of someone viewing an HTTPS page, then getting a browser warning if they click on an HTTP link. (Must confess that I haven't seen that for a while, although that's probably a reflection of how few sites use vanilla HTTP these days.)
They would also work better for anyone with a locally running dev system - in terms of not sending people back to the real ISFDB in a way that's not obvious unless you're keeping a careful eye on the address bar. (I appreciate that's not a major factor.)
Why are you against relative URLs in notes? Do you know why the report was picking up on them? (I assume the other ones I've submitted recently have either been flagged as OK by a mod, or re-edited.) ErsatzCulture 10:40, 14 November 2021 (EST)
EDIT: Forgot to add: I vaguely recall a recent Wiki discussion about having templates for title and pubs - that would be a preferable way of linking to other records. I don't think it got beyond discussion though? ErsatzCulture 10:44, 14 November 2021 (EST)
FR 1461, "Create templates for Title and Publication records", was created on 2021-11-01. I am yet to look into what it would take to implement it. Ahasuerus 11:31, 14 November 2021 (EST)
EDIT#2: I've just had a cursory scan of - I don't see anything that explicitly cares about relative URLs? I do wonder if the report was confused by the original version of the note, where of the 2 links, one was the full URL and one wasn't. ErsatzCulture 11:15, 14 November 2021 (EST)
I am not sure what triggered the exception. I'd have to recreate the scenario on the development server, but I am too sick to do it at the moment. Ahasuerus 11:31, 14 November 2021 (EST)
Thanks - don't worry about it, I'll see if I can work out a bit more what was going on. ErsatzCulture 11:46, 14 November 2021 (EST)
Ahasuerus: as an aside: is there any easy way of running a report in isolation, especially one like this where there's lots of logic in Python? (As opposed to reports that are mainly just SQL that you can easily copypaste into a database session.) ErsatzCulture 11:15, 14 November 2021 (EST)
There is no way to run cleanup reports separately. The closest you can get to it is to comment out sections of Python code. Ahasuerus 11:31, 14 November 2021 (EST)
We can always bulk update the notes to replace http references to our own site to https when we switch. :) We will have to really or modern browsers may decide to hate us.
As for relative paths - because I am not sure if the code will always behave with them - and if they won’t end up broken due to a server update for example. The code is a mix of some very old and new pieces and that kind of code makes me nervous. So I keep it simple. Plus think of a another editor with less or no html understanding editing your note after you. Annie 13:29, 14 November 2021 (EST)


You even moved the explanation on why it is genre. It has ghosts and people talking WITH them according to a reviewer. It is ours. Annie 13:11, 16 November 2021 (EST)

If you're referring to the mod note in [1], that was submitted before I did some digging into the only other pub, and found the comment in the wrong place, and moved it to the title level. (I wasn't going to cancel my original AddPub and resubmit a new edit solely due to a mod note that I myself had made defunct.)
I would have removed the now-duplicated part of the pub note once my title edit had been approved, but I think you beat me to it? (It was after midnight here and I'd powered down my PC at that point.)
Or am I missing the point you're making? (again?) ErsatzCulture 13:53, 16 November 2021 (EST)
Ah, did not realize the submission I just approved was before the other one. Now I remember that I handled the other one when you pinged me for it and not as the usual sweep of yours before I start working on Fixer - usually if they are still there, they from after last time I cleared yours. That's all. And as there is no other way to answer a Mod note, I stopped by and explained why it is in scope. :) Annie 13:59, 16 November 2021 (EST)

Belladonna Nights and Other Stories

This one is definitely out - I got my shipping notification on the 22nd after the mail on the 21st that it is finally in stock. So publication date will be some time in November - but it is possible that the book itself has October printed on it - will know in a few days. Annie 11:54, 24 November 2021 (EST)


Can you check your UK scrappers for this one. I found the ebook just fine but the paperback has widely different dates all over the place and no price in sight except on the US side (with a date matching the ebook). Either it got delayed a time or 3 OR something else happened here (Solaris is being Solaris as usual). Annie 13:38, 24 November 2021 (EST)

Afraid this one had completely escaped my attention. (I didn't recognize the author name at all, although on checking, I see I picked up details on the - already recorded - first book in that series ages ago.) I'll have a nosey around the various UK vendor sites to see what they have to say.
I assume you've seen this announcement from last year, which I presume matches some of the dates you've seen? That's the only search result for "firesky rebellionpub" on Twitter, other than a link to a GR review from a couple of weeks ago..
(I never bothered writing a scraper for the Solaris/Rebellion site, because by the time I got round to them, they'd removed a load of the info they used to have, compared to when I first started actively contributing to ISFDB. As such, I don't check their site for new pubs as often as I do for the UK Big 5 imprints.) ErsatzCulture 13:47, 24 November 2021 (EST)
EDIT: Waterstones, and Blackwells all have Dec 9th for the tp. Amazon UK has October 14th, but also reports no stock (and also has the author's name mangled for that pub, so possibly there might be a corrected update I haven't yet found). I trawled through the last few weeks of Rebellion's tweets, and the only mentions of this title both referenced it coming out in the near future. ErsatzCulture 13:57, 24 November 2021 (EST)
Finally found author confirmation of Dec: ErsatzCulture 14:01, 24 November 2021 (EST)
(resolving edit confict and updating) Yeah - it went from May to October to November and now December where it seems to be holding and matching both on the Rebellion site for the ebook and on the US S&S site on the paper one (which in my experience means that it is a viable date for the most part) so I finally decided to let it in. UK stores have dates all over the delays - Amazon UK still thinks October, some expect it tomorrow... So we will see. We will know in 2 weeks (or earlier). :) Fixer catches Solaris on the US side and it makes Q1 so I usually get these from my side - but they tend to move a bit so sometimes I am left scratching my head on their dating. This one is unusually stubborn - thus me pinging you.
Ah, 12/9 us the Thu after the US date which sounds reasonable for the tp on the UK side. :)Annie 14:04, 24 November 2021 (EST)
I'd just submitted an edit to add the UK price and date to the note for the tp. ErsatzCulture 14:08, 24 November 2021 (EST)
If you remember, check it in 2 weeks to see if it actually DID make it out. It is not watchDate material at this point and there is a missing audio book which will send me rechecking this one sooner or later but I tend to get paranoid around Solaris when they start delaying a book :) Annie 14:10, 24 November 2021 (EST)

Awards for novellas and other shorter works


When the award is for a novella, we link to the text (aka the novella record) and not to the chapbook (which is just a container). I moved this one where it belongs. :) Annie 17:47, 3 December 2021 (EST)

OK, will endeavour to remember - I don't know if the current Goodreads finalists have been added yet, but I might do those in a few days if no-one beats me to it, and I think there's at least one novella amongst those.
I did have a look at the code if it would be easy to hide the "add award" link for chapbooks, to avoid this issue. Technically that's easy enough - there are similar cases for other sidebar links and particular title types - but I see there are 2 awards that are explicitly for "chapbooks", which probably do need that ability. (Even though all the finalists I looked at for that award were novels or collections - hohum....) ErsatzCulture 18:09, 3 December 2021 (EST)
Our chapbooks are NOT the industry chapbooks and chapterbooks - these are our "collection of 1 story" containers. Awards for chapbooks/chapter books are for children chapter books (that's the level between picture books and middle grade novels/novellas) - which will be novels (if long enough), collections/anthologies (if containing stories) or novellas (if shorter but still 1 piece fiction). The only case we want the award on a chapbook is if the award is for the design of THAT chapbook for example as opposed to for the text inside.
I saw that one by chance - was verifying the hardcover (and adding translations as I tend to do) and saw that some of the awards were on the wrong place. We MAY need a cleanup report for that - let me ping Ahasuerus. :) Annie 18:24, 3 December 2021 (EST)
Done -- see the Community Portal announcement. Ahasuerus 10:14, 4 December 2021 (EST)

Redawn Chapbook to Novel

Hi! All fixed[2]. After update Novel back to Chapbook this removed the duplicate novel titles. I then removed the shortfiction titles using remove titles from the three pubs, next I change the pubs back to novels and the title record back to a novel and last I changed the now empty(no linked pubs) shortfiction title record with the tags and series link back to a novel and merged it with the new novel title record. This would have been easier if only one book was involved.Kraang 00:04, 23 December 2021 (EST)

Thanks - I'd been putting off doing these changes for ages, because I suspected they'd be longwinded, and then when I managed to screw-up at the first step, I groaned at the prospect of trying to undo the mess I created. Thanks for sorting it all out! ErsatzCulture 11:51, 23 December 2021 (EST)
Enjoyed doing it , good practice.Kraang 00:10, 24 December 2021 (EST)

The Dream Gatherer

About that note here. If you look at the Amazon UK sizes, this one (the 2018 one) is 13.4 x 21.4 cm (aka the bigger paperback (Demy? Not wide enough for a C format but the size is almost perfect for a demy) and this one is 12.8 x 19.6 cm (the normal B-format paperback). Which explains having two of them in 2 years. Not that Amazon UK is perfect on that but the prices kinda point to the same story as well. However - that 2019 one is indeed a 2020 one - even OCLC agrees on 2020 and I remember fixing this book - not sure how the date never got fixed (Fixer's date is from the US side which is... amusing for UK books). All fixed now. Let me know if there is anything else left? Annie 11:16, 28 December 2021 (EST)

Ah, thanks for looking into this. The earlier one being a larger format did cross my mind, but I'm used to seeing those listed with ~230mm as the longest dimension, so when this one only has 214mm, so I lazily assumed it was the smaller format. Plus I'm used to seeing the larger tps being priced at £15+, so this one being £9.99 reinforced my presumption this was a regular tp. (I guess the lower-than-usual price is due to the lower-than-usual page count?) ErsatzCulture 11:53, 28 December 2021 (EST)
The 21.5 is pretty standard for the middle formats (Demi/C format carry it - we do not see these with the majors much but in other publishers, I see this C format often from UK). I tend to take a second look when someone reports anything over 20 cm - that means that it is bigger than a B format so usually there WILL also be a B format (or an A one eventually). I had a few of those demis when I was back in Europe - they are very annoying to shelve
It IS a weird format for Gollancz so who knows what they had been doing and why (but OCLC agrees on the size (22 cm which is the way to mark 21.5 so... it checks out). I have a suspicion that they did not go with a Royal because of the length and that may explain the price. Who knows. Annie 12:31, 28 December 2021 (EST)