ISFDB:Help desk/archives/archive 27

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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 July - December 2017.

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There is something wrong

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

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

Secondary verifications with mistakes

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

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

Data Base 8

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

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

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

Thank you Ron, much appreciated.

Illustrated Classic Editions

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

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

cover photo

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

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


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

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

Search wiki User space -- advanced?

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

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

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

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

Adding New Translations

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

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

Grimms' v Grimm's

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

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

Title records without publication records

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

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

"Beyond The Burning Time" by Kathryn Lasky

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

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

Joke pseudonyms

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

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

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

Grimms' Fairy Tales

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

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

Page Count

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

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

SFBC Numbers/Dates

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

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

Sirius magazine covers

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

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

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

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

Transliterated Title for Ampersand?

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

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

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

I am somewhat befuddled regarding translations for publications and titles.

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

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

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

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

Ancient Greek vs. Modern Greek

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

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

Self-Knowledge belong in database?

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

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

obnoxious question

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

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

Checking LCCNs

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

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

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

changed primary verifications

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

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

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

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

Contents of a non-fiction

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

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

pseudonym question

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

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

Gutter Code for Quality Paperback Book Club

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

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

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

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

Missing number line

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

Brian Lumley: Latter Day Lovecraftian

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

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

Including nongenre titles in partial contents

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

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

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

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

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

(One month later) Has anyone had any further thoughts about this? Because it's really a fairly important question, affecting numerous titles and publications. --Vasha 14:30, 4 October 2017 (EDT)

Incorrect names

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

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

How to Verify

Please forgive me if I am being blind. I have an original edition of a publication (The 1953 Sidgwick and Jackson edition of Heinlein's The Man Who Sold the Moon). So I would like to provide a primary verification to the publication record. I tried to follow the instructions at [1], which says there will be a "Verify this Pub" link in the navigation bar on the left. However, I don't see a Verify link on the publication record at [2] or the edit page at [3].

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

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

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

delete a file

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

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

is the alchemist genre?

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

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

Formatting Nonfiction Reviews in Magazines

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

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

The Ancestors story lengths

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

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

mystery nights mystery

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


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

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

James E. Gunn

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

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

Amazon availablility vs. publication date

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

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

The Satan Bug

The Satan Bug is a thriller by Alistair MacLean. It does not contain any magic, aliens or fantasy. I would suggest that it is deleted from the database. However there do seem to be quite a few people who have verified various editions. --AndyjMo 17:33, 26 September 2017 (EDT)

SFE3 says that:
  • The Dark Crusader (1961; vt The Black Shrike 1961) and The Satan Bug (1962), both as by Ian Stuart, are Cold War thrillers which make use of sf McGuffins.
Do you happen to know what kinds of "sf McGuffins" they use? Ahasuerus 18:50, 26 September 2017 (EDT)
IIRC - potent virus, high tech security (for the 60's). Much as I like his stuff, it doesn't belong at ISFDB. It looks like Don Erikson verified all the other ones. Doug H 19:55, 26 September 2017 (EDT)
Another book I don't believe belongs in ISFDB is I, Lucifer by Peter O'Donnell. It's an action thriller "This installment of the Modesty Blaise adventures finds Modesty and faithful friend Willie Garvin trying to get to the bottom of another of Seff's evil plots. When it is discovered that a disturbed young man named Lucifer has the ability to foresee the death of those around him, Seff recruits the boy into his gang and uses his powers of premonition to evil ends, extracting ransom from rich victims who have been told of their impending death. During the course of her investigation Modesty's cover is blown, and she finds herself trapped on Seff's island stronghold and must use all of her guile and brains to escape.. The only 'genre' element would be the ability to foresee death, but I can't remember how the plot unfolds. However it is not really an ISFDB title. --AndyjMo 06:12, 27 September 2017 (EDT)
OK, I'm going to delete them. Hauck 07:29, 27 September 2017 (EDT)
I believe that fiction about precognition, like fiction about other psychic abilities, counts as speculative fiction and is within the scope of the project. We have over 100 titles tagged "precognition" and 300 titles tagged "psychic ability". If some editors disagree, we should discuss it on the Rules and Standards page and update the Rules of Acquisition before we start making changes. Ahasuerus 09:51, 27 September 2017 (EDT)
I'm OK with this but if the person that added the book to the db says that it doesn't belong here, I'll go with it. Hauck 03:23, 28 September 2017 (EDT)
Checking submission history, I see that the Doubleday edition of this novel was originally added by ChrisJ based on its appearance in Reginald1. AndyjMo added a later edition earlier this year.
As a general observation, I don't think that the submitter's opinion about a submitted pub's eligibility is dispositive. Different contributors may have different views and preferences, which may not match what's stated in the Rules of Acquisition. Ahasuerus 12:29, 28 September 2017 (EDT)
Submitter's opinion perhaps, but (sole) reader's (as is the case here) carries far more weigth. Hauck 13:33, 28 September 2017 (EDT)
Readers can confirm what elements certain books contain. However, they are not sole judges of whether the elements -- in this case precognition -- put the work within or outside the scope of the project. That's up to the Rules of Acquisition. My interpretation of the RoA has always been that psychic abilities are within the scope, but it's not stated explicitly. I will post a proposal on the Rules and Standards page. Ahasuerus 15:20, 28 September 2017 (EDT)
As a general observation, we're bound to repeat this discussion every time a borderline case creeps up. Hauck 13:33, 28 September 2017 (EDT)
My goals is to fine-tune the Rules of Acquisition as much as possible, thus minimizing the number of ambiguities, borderline cases and diverging interpretations. We'll never eliminate them completely, but the fewer borderline cases we have, the less frustration our editors will experience when data is deleted. A frustrated editor is a less productive editor or even an ex-editor. Ahasuerus 15:27, 28 September 2017 (EDT)
Another question, if a primary verified pub is deleted, does that show on the verifiers 'Recently Changed Primary Verifications' page? This happened to Don Erikson's editions of 'The Satan Bug'. I would like to know if one of my verifications is deleted, and consider it bad manners if it's done without informing the verifier(s). --Willem 14:37, 28 September 2017 (EDT)
I am afraid not. Once a publication has been deleted, its data is gone, so there would be nothing to save in the database or display to the verifier. We would need to create a separate process to take a snapshot of the about-to-be-deleted-primary-verified-pub and save it in the database so that it could be shown to the (ex-)primary verifier. Ahasuerus 15:05, 28 September 2017 (EDT)
This step of deletion can be safely considered as premature. It wasn't only founded on a suggestion (and it's not clear if the editor really has read the book). The sorry thing about it was the neglection of SFE3, where the title is obviously listed as genre. Since we are cooperating with this source of information, it seems only logical that we list the same titles (and obviously others that aren't science fiction, but still speculative). It remains to question how we can prevent moderators from deleting such titles. Stonecreek 15:34, 28 September 2017 (EDT)
There's also the link at SFE3 that directs towards our site to consider, so I'll add at least the title/publication that is listed at that source. Stonecreek 15:43, 28 September 2017 (EDT)
After that task the linkage still is broken (likely due to the new author identifier). I've sent the following message to SFE3: 'Due to a moderator's error the identifier no. of Alistair MacLean was changed, so that your linkage is no longer valid. The new url is this: Sorry for this' Stonecreek 16:01, 28 September 2017 (EDT)
Peter O'Donnell has been restored and SFE3 has been notified about the new URL. Ahasuerus 10:11, 29 September 2017 (EDT)

Story length

Quick question: Am I correct in assuming that any fiction piece less than or equal to 7500 words is a 'short story', no matter how short it is. Is there some sort of unwritten tradition that what me might call 'vignettes' are entered with no length data so that they show up as simply 'short fiction'? Thanks, Doug / Vornoff 15:39, 28 September 2017 (EDT)

Correct. We do not split micro-fiction, vignettes, flash fiction and all other smaller types into their own category..You can add a tag or a comment but they get set to "short story" when found (they are the easiest to sort out) :) Annie 19:52, 28 September 2017 (EDT)
For what it's worth, I've been adding notes to drabbles and microfictions but not to flash pieces. --Vasha 16:06, 1 October 2017 (EDT)

cover illustration mixups

I've found some anomalies in the bibliography for artist stephen youll

The record for Raptor Red, 1996 has 2 different images, one of which should be in with the record for 1995
one record for Assassin's Quest, has two different images, one of which is the same as the other record for Assassin's Quest,
one record for Windhaven, has two different images, one of which is the same as the other record for Windhaven,

I don't know how to split/move around cover art records. thanks. gzuckier 01:45, 1 October 2017 (EDT)

Well, this one really was a bit complicated. These cases seem to stem from a time when we had no display of the cover images upon merging or varianting. Thanks for bringing them up! I have done some clearance, but it's still not clear if the interior art pieces of Assassin's Quest are correctly varianted. Stonecreek 11:19, 1 October 2017 (EDT)
The cover for Assassin's Quest (US editions) changed to a new one by Alejandro Colucci in 2014, per the author's blog and this site. So I would expect any US version before then to be the old Stephen Youll cover. Likewise for books of cover art that included the cover image. I think some of the verified copies of Assassin's Quest may have a link to the "generic" Amazon image, which has now changed to the Colucci image. It would have showed the Stephen Youll image when the title was verified. I have this on my "look into it sometime list" but haven't gotten around to it. I do not know which printing # was the first to have the new cover. BungalowBarbara 21:18, 20 October 2017 (EDT)

How to record compilation of messages...

I am wondering how to record this article in the latest Apex. It is the editor introducing a bunch of congratulatory anniversary messages. I feel like the messages should be individually indexed because they're very like letters. Would the appropriate title be "Untitled (Apex Magazine, September 2017)" or something more descriptive? --Vasha 16:13, 1 October 2017 (EDT)

Essay for the article as a whole and separate ones for the pieces (if you decide to catalog them) - the way we sometimes do when there are reviews of multiple books (this way you can link the individual books and still have the overarching essay in the content). A note in the publication explaining this makes it even clearer. Annie 20:12, 2 October 2017 (EDT)
I agree; my question was about the protocol for coming up with names for the individual pieces. --Vasha 22:58, 2 October 2017 (EDT)
Untitled (Apex Magazine, September 2017) sounds good to me. :) Annie 23:41, 2 October 2017 (EDT)

more cover illustration mixup

I've found some anomalies in the bibliography for artist Jim Thiesen

The record for Relic has 2 different images, one of which should be in with the record

ghanks. gzuckier 14:31, 2 October 2017 (EDT)

Questions or concerns regarding Title Notes

Questions about publication notes can be directed to primary verifiers. Where does one direct concerns or questions about title notes. The example I have is this Jules Verne title. The synopsis is correct, but the publication information is wrong. Do I simply overwrite it? Do I 'sign' my contribution? How should I source my assertions? Is there any way to track changes to the information I enter to ensure it stays? How do I respect contributions to the notes that I have no say on? I doubt we have 'rules', but do we have an etiquette for Title Notes? (and presumably Series Notes, ...) Doug H 20:13, 20 October 2017 (EDT)

Sorry, but it seems that we don't have an etiquette for title notes, though it'd be generally best to give sources for data like first publication. So, if you have some reliable source concerning the first publication, it sure is better to overwrite an unsourced title note. Stonecreek 00:36, 21 October 2017 (EDT)
Title notes are not signed. To source the information, you can simply write "... per [source]". I agree with Stonecreek that if a given statement is unsourced, you should simply overwrite it. However, I've seen cases where different sources will give different information. Unless that can be resolved by a primary publication, the best thing then is to list both. There is no way to track changes to title notes. Is it not necessary to notify anyone of changes to title notes (though I could see cases where that is beneficial - like the title was in a single verified publication). Moderators should be looking at the quality of the title note submissions when approving them (i.e. I would hope they would question a case when someone was removing a sourced statement for an unsourced one, etc.). -- JLaTondre (talk) 09:48, 21 October 2017 (EDT)
Different publications can give different and possibly contradictory information about a title. I presume that sourcing assertions from a publication would be useful, but not enough to override another one that is also sourced. Doug H 09:40, 22 October 2017 (EDT)
Generally, yes. But it can be a case by case basis. New research (or author's commentary) may reveal an earlier printing. If such a case occurs, just explain it in the notes. -- JLaTondre (talk) 10:00, 22 October 2017 (EDT)

The Brightest Fell - DAW Collectors number is probably wrong

Hi, I just verified The Brightest Fell. The Daw Collectors number given on the Copyright page is "DAW Book Collectors No. 1734" -- but that is the same as the previous book in the series, Once Broken Faith. (The printing date is also wrong on the copyright page of the newer book. Not proofed well, I guess.) Does anything need to be added to the Publication Series page for DAW Collectors? I'm not sure how to do that. BungalowBarbara 20:57, 20 October 2017 (EDT)

I'm not an expert on DAW, but if you'd like to add some note to the series: it's quite easy after clicking on the series (just use the 'Edit This Publication Series' on the left tool bar. Stonecreek 00:32, 21 October 2017 (EDT)

Felix Lance Falcon

I recently entered the collection Extreme Tales of Gay Sex, Cannibalism, and Torture by Felix Lance Falcon. My question is whether or not this is another pseudonym of George H. Scithers, who once wrote a gay porn see here under the Felix Lance Falkon name. The new collection was published as you can see in October 12, 2010 right after his death. Should I make the assumption that both Falcon and Falkon are one and the same, and put a note in the information that the information is unreliable? Anyway, please let me know while I enter the ebook version. MLB 04:32, 28 October 2017 (EDT)

As far as I know, "Felix Lance Falkon" was Scithers's personal pseudonym. As I wrote a few months ago:
  • George H. Scithers (1929-2010), a well-known US fan and editor, was an officer in the US military until his retirement in 1973. At the tail end of his military career he published a pornographic gay SF novel Hung in Space (1969) as "Felix Lance Falkon". He used the same pseudonym when he edited a non-fiction (and very explicit) art book A Historic Collection of Gay Art in 1972. In later years he wrote numerous erotic/pornographic gay S&M stories, which reflected his interest in torture, castration, "snuff", etc. He also drew a fair amount of gay erotica of the same type, some of it as "Felix Lance Falkon" and some (apparently) as "Graewolf". [snip]
There isn't a whole lot about Scithers's gay erotica in scholarly literature, but a few tidbits have surfaced since his death. For example, here is what _Gay American Novels, 1870–1970: A Reader’s Guide_ by Drewey Wayne Gunn has to say about the topic:
  • The noted sf editor George H. Scithers continued to turn out pseudo science fiction pornography under the pen name Felix Lance Falkon (McFarland, 2016, "Postscript: Novels 1971-1981", p. 184)
Given the above, I think it should be safe to add "Felix Lance Falcon" as a Scithers pseudonym. Ahasuerus 09:07, 28 October 2017 (EDT)
Well, gee thanx. All proper information has now been entered. MLB 16:32, 28 October 2017 (EDT)

"First Printing C"

I have a 1973 Houghton Mifflin book whose copyright page says it's a "First Printing C". Anybody know what that "C" means? Chavey 22:58, 28 October 2017 (EDT)

Didn't find and hint at OCLC/WorldCat. --Zapp 05:25, 31 October 2017 (EDT)
'Cloth' perhaps? The code on the dustjacket is weird. An August 1973 printing should have code "0873" --Willem 10:45, 31 October 2017 (EDT)
"Cloth" might be an option, but I've never see that before. My guess was that the "0812" code might mean "Aug. 12th". Chavey 22:56, 31 October 2017 (EDT)
What comes after? Could it be "Copyright"? --MartyD 16:10, 3 November 2017 (EDT)
Maybe take a picture of the copyright page and post it here? That may help. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 17:04, 3 November 2017 (EDT)

Links to BNF

Is it possible that BNF changed its addresses for publications? The External IDs numbers produce now failing www addresses. See Le trône de jade. If there is given a number starting with cb the link comes correct. See L'empire d'ivoire. What shall we do with older External IDs numbers? And should the new ones put in with cb or without? --Zapp 05:47, 31 October 2017 (EDT)

It looks like BNF IDs are still the same, but their URLs have changed. For example, take this 2007 printing of "Le trône de jade". Our record states that the BNF ID is 41110490. Sure enough, if you pull it up in BNF, it says "Notice n° : FRBNF41110490" at the bottom. However, the URL that our software uses, , is no longer valid -- it's now.
Comparing the two URLs, it's easy to see that BNF has added a prefix ("cb") and a suffix ("w") to their URLs. If all prefixes and all suffixes were the same, it would be easy to change our software to display the new URLs. Unfortunately, it's not so simple. Consider the 2010 printing of the same book. The BNF ID is 42140321. If you add the same prefix and the same suffix to the ID, you will get . When you enter this URL in a browser, you get an "incorrect control character" ("caractère de contrôle incorrect") error message. The correct suffix is "j" -- see
What this means is that these new BNF URLs apparently determine the last letter of the URL based on some "control characters" algorithm. It's similar to the way ISBNs are built -- the last character is calculated based on the sum of the first 9 (now 12) characters. We'll need to find out what the new algorithm is and change our URL building logic accordingly. Ahasuerus 11:43, 31 October 2017 (EDT)
According to this Wikipedia template:
  • Le numéro de notice est FRBNF34063996, mais « 34063996 » ne suffit pas pour générer le lien, en effet ce n'est pas le numéro de la notice qui est utilisé, mais la séquence de caractères qui figure après « cb » dans le lien ; cette séquence contient un caractère supplémentaire (chiffre ou lettre minuscule) qui sert de clé de contrôle : il faut sur cet exemple y ajouter la clé « 7 » pour obtenir le code « 340639967 » nécessaire au bon fonctionnement du lien.
In other words, the "prefix" is apparently not a calculated value. It's an arbitrary character which can't be derived from the rest of the BNF ID.
If true, then we need to go back and update all of our BNF IDs. There are only 400 of them, so it's not too bad. We will also need to update the software to add "cb" to BNF URLs.
Let's wait until we hear from our regular BNF users in case there are other quirks that I am not aware of. Ahasuerus 12:05, 31 October 2017 (EDT)
Want to remind this problem. --Zapp 13:48, 11 December 2017 (EST)
Thanks for the reminder! I have left messages on the Talk pages of other active editors with BNF experience. Ahasuerus 14:54, 11 December 2017 (EST)
I may have solved Zapp's problem, see his talk page.--Dirk P Broer 05:55, 12 December 2017 (EST)
So 400 other BNF links have to be changed by hand? Until BNF renews its URLs again? --Zapp 13:20, 13 December 2017 (EST)
It looks like there is no way to convert them automatically. The best I can do is create a cleanup reports to find all BNF links that use obsolete numbers... Ahasuerus 14:20, 13 December 2017 (EST)
OK, if it's necessary I try to change them after Your report. --Zapp 14:36, 13 December 2017 (EST)
Sounds like a plan! I am currently in the middle of separating Catalog IDs from ISBNs, but once I wrap that up I should be able to whip up a new cleanup report quickly. Ahasuerus 16:37, 13 December 2017 (EST)
Tell me. --Zapp 18:00, 13 December 2017 (EST)
Sure thing, I will leave a note on your Talk page. TIA! Ahasuerus 20:34, 13 December 2017 (EST)
Done. Ahasuerus 17:21, 17 December 2017 (EST)

Series weirdness

I notice that The Odyssey of Homer is listed as belonging to the series The Iliad and The Odyssey, which doesn't seem to list it. There seems to be a few such anomalies with this series. I'm not really worried about it specifically, but just wondering if it represented some underlying malfunction of the series listing code which needs to be looked at. thanks. gzuckier 01:55, 5 November 2017 (EDT)

It shows for me. Do you have your translation preferences[4][5] set to either not show translations or not show English translations? -- JLaTondre (talk) 11:45, 5 November 2017 (EST)
Huh. no, i got it set to show translations. something cache related maybe. i'll try logging in in another machine. thanks. gzuckier 21:09, 5 November 2017 (EST)

OCLC & LCCN External IDs

I would like some guidance as to when and when not to link a record to the Library of Congress and/or WorldCat/OCLC. I feel that if a record exists in either of the databases and the date of printing and ISBN match then that is a good reason to link the record. However I am not sure what to do when the edition is not the first printing e.g. 2nd printing by number line. LCCN and OCLC very rarely (if at all) list the editions so it is difficult to know if the edition in the database is the one in isfdb. e.g. This record for Unshapely Things is the 2nd edition. There is a LCCN record 2007583621 and OCLC 79869245 for the first printing - should I include these links. One of the reasons for raising this question is that the OCLC/WorldCat has been previously validated as NA. --AndyjMo 07:29, 6 November 2017 (EST)

For better or for worse, the way we organize our records is different from the way LoC/OCLC organize their records. For this reason a perfect match is not always possible. For example, a single OCLC record may have 3+ different ISBN: one for the hardcover edition, one for the paperback edition and one for the library version of the hardcover edition. In this situation we would have 3 different publication records and each one of them would link to the same OCLC record.
Re: different printings, if there is a clear indication that the only OCLC's entry for one of our records is for a different printing, it may be prudent to enter the OCLC number in the Publication Notes field (using the OCLC template) and explain the difference. Ahasuerus 10:15, 9 November 2017 (EST)


I recently purchased this book and I'd like to ask a few questions. When I list it do I have to list all of the authors as the author of this work, or do I list them in the contents and just give the book an uncredited editor credit? Also, when I list the contents do I list the chapters as [chapter][title of chapter][author] or just [title of chapter][author]. And one last question. The back cover is signed Bok, but the front cover is not signed or credited. Is it also by Hannes Bok? I'm sure the answers are rather simple, and I'm just making everything complicated. MLB 04:20, 9 November 2017 (EST)

The reason that I'm asking all of these question is that since this a collected version, not a serialized version, of this round-robin story, some rules may be different. Merging the chapters might be tricky as some chapters where run in two parts, but not reprinted that way here. MLB 04:31, 9 November 2017 (EST)
Based on the cover, I would list it as a novel with eighteen authors. While they may have written it round-robin style, it is apparently intended to be a single work. I would list the artist as "Bok", and variant it to Hannes Bok. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 20:26, 9 November 2017 (EST)

Type of publication.

I have 3 book in series which I don't know how to categorize. In each there is a novel, a few short stories and a few essays. All books have word "almanac" in title.Debolestis 16:00, 9 November 2017 (EST)

Sounds like they should each be listed as an omnibus with the contents you mentioned. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 20:28, 9 November 2017 (EST)

a question

I just tried to enter the information for the November-December 2017 issue of Asimov's and I got For new/added publications the reference title should not be entered in the Content section. It will be added automatically at submission creation time. What is this? I've never seen this before. MLB 00:02, 10 November 2017 (EST)

Check your essays - you have one of them as an Editor most likely. Or did you try to add the Editor record by mistake? Annie 03:26, 10 November 2017 (EST)
Yea, that was it. I was looking right at it, but couldn't see it. Evidently I shouldn't have been left alone with my computer today. It looks like I accidentally erased my July-December 2016 archive, **sigh**, anyway it can be recovered? MLB 04:41, 10 November 2017 (EST)
I restored your July-December 2016 archive. Need any help with the January-June 2017 archive? --Willem 16:14, 10 November 2017 (EST)

bagger vance

the golf novel. don't see it in the database, so i'm asking if it is genre? the library of congress cataloging-in-publication data listed on the copyright page includes "Supernatural-Fiction". thanks. gzuckier 01:51, 11 November 2017 (EST)

Bagger Vance seems to be something like a ghost or an incarnation of a supernatural entity, according to Wikipedia, here and here, so it seems it would be in. Stonecreek 03:00, 11 November 2017 (EST)

The Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes

Titan Books have a series of books featuring Sherlock Holmes "The Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes". Each book is written by a different author but they have similar Cover Art and all have "The Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes" on the cover and title page. Some of the books in the series have been associated with the Publication Series The Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. I was wondering whether the "Series" should actually be set up as sub-series of the "Sherlock Holmes" Series as they all relate to Sherlock Holmes. --AndyjMo 09:23, 13 November 2017 (EST)

"The Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes" is a publication series. Publication series are used to organize publications and can't be linked to regular/title series which are used to organize title records. This publication series is a good example of why that is: the novels which were reprinted by Titan Books as part of this publication series belong to different title series: Farmer's "Wold Newton", Saberhagen's "Dracula Sequence", etc.
Also, please note that although regular series can be nested, publication series can't. Ahasuerus 12:01, 13 November 2017 (EST)

I've also noticed that The Breath of God is specified as being part of the "Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes" series. Although it is published by Titan Books there is no indication of it being part of that series. Titan books do publish quite of lot of 'Sherlock Holmes' titles, but only some seem to be part of this series. Does anybody know where the Publication Series entry came from for this title? --AndyjMo 09:23, 13 November 2017 (EST)

how variant is a variant?

"After updating the novel and adding both a glossary and an index, in April 2009 Ulysses Press released the 33 chapter edition under the new title" Variant, or 2 separate titles? thanks. gzuckier 02:10, 14 November 2017 (EST)

It's very variant unless there are really substantial changes such as a new ending or a new plot. Stonecreek 02:19, 14 November 2017 (EST)

How to remove a verification?

I verified a pub by adding the first printing. I wanted verify the second printing after cloning. How to remove the wrong verification? Thanks Henna 13:59, 14 November 2017 (EST)

Go to the one with the wrong verification and click on the "Verify This Pub" link. It will give you the option of changing it to "No verification" for your entry. Select that and click on the Verify button to remove it. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 14:23, 14 November 2017 (EST)
Thanks for your help! I'm so stupid, next time I try to read the text next to the buttons :) Henna 16:23, 14 November 2017 (EST)
No worries. Happens to the best of us. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 12:03, 22 November 2017 (EST)

Permission error editing my own user page & problem with email verification

  1. When trying to edit my own user page, I get the following error:
    You do not have permission to do that, for the following reason:
    You do not have permission to edit pages in the User namespace.
  2. Additionally when I try to do an email verification I do not get an email.

-- Kurst 17:42, 14 November 2017 (EST)

At one point our User pages (as well as many other ISFDB Wiki pages) were under continuous attack by spam bots. As a counter-measure, we implemented a somewhat elaborate anti-spam algorithm. You will be able to edit your User page once you have accumulated a certain number of Wiki edits. I don't want to post the exact number in case a botnet operator is reading this, but it's not very high.
Sorry about the hassle, but, unfortunately, the alternative is much worse.
As far as e-mail verification goes, it's no longer required, so don't worry about it. Thanks for editing! Ahasuerus 18:37, 14 November 2017 (EST)

duplicate art on endpapers

how does one handle contents listing when the same art is printed on the front and back endpapers? iirc, listing it twice with different page numbers doesn't work? thanks. gzuckier 02:38, 18 November 2017 (EST)

List it with a different name "Name (back endpaper)" or "Name[2]" for example and once approved, add a note explaining the naming convention and variant it to the original. Or do no list it in the content and just add a note explaining that it is also on the back end paper. Annie 04:56, 18 November 2017 (EST)
thanks. gzuckier 20:43, 19 November 2017 (EST)

From Fallen Angels excerpt

As states "Although the title would suggest an excerpt from the novel, it is actually a short essay about the writing of the novel.". The entries for the two printings of Fallen Angels (excerpt) in "Playgrounds of the Mind" then presumably should be variants of the above essay, not this which appears (?) to be a shortfiction. thanks. gzuckier 20:43, 19 November 2017 (EST)

You may want to ping a few of the verifiers of the short fiction one to see if they can verify if it is indeed a real excerpt. If that is done and proves to be the case, then I agree with you. Annie 16:50, 20 November 2017 (EST)

A Clockwork Orange

As explained the original American edition was shortened from the British edition, then a second edition with the missing part restored. This should be presumably 2 (3?) variant titles from the single we have. The UK versions should be distinguishable and some restored entries are clear ("A Clockwork Orange (Restored Text)", "A Clockwork Orange: Restored Edition") and those with the intro to the restored edition also obvious. have to guess the rest? thanks. gzuckier 21:05, 19 November 2017 (EST)

How important is that missing chapter (I need to reread this novel...)? I am not sure where we should be drawing the line on what we split and what we keep together. If it changes the work considerably (just an end does not), I would say to split them but if it does not, I do not see a point in doing it. Plus we cannot just guess which edition is used for some of the older editions (and I would rather not guess...) Annie 16:55, 20 November 2017 (EST)

Photographies Illustrating a Non-Fiction Title

Hello all, I'm trying to add a non-fiction title about steampunk in my possession and wanted to know if or if not to include all, some or none of the images that are used to illustrate the text. I've read the Content Information on Help:Screen:NewPub very carefully where it comes to INTERIORART, but still have a question:

The subsection Contents included with exceptions says:

Photography: As a general rule, photographs are not indexed. But, if the photograph illustrates a work, it should be entered as INTERIORART.

BUT further below in Regular Titles -- Title Type -- INTERIORART I find:

Rules for including artwork: If an article is illustrated with diagrams, or with photographs, these do not need to be included; they are not "artwork" in the sense that we are indexing.

Could someone explain this further, please? - which photographies are included and which are not? - especially if photos are showing pieces of science-fiction/fantasy/horror art that are not pictures? -- Kurst 21:51, 21 November 2017 (EST)

If you do think along the lines of photos of sculptures or computer art: that are to be included (and usually are credited to the creator of the photographed art, and not the photographer). If the photos are portraits of authors or book assemblages they are usually not included. But if you intended to ask for something entirely different: could you state some examples? Stonecreek 13:38, 22 November 2017 (EST)
Ok, your answer already solved some of the cases. There are others that are not solved, so I'll be more specific. The work I'm trying to enter is "Steampunk: kurz & geek", a non-fiction work about ... (yeah, exactly that). The book is mostly illustrated with photographies of something that the text is about to show an example. Some of them are of sculptures, or steampunk-machines. Unfortunately the work is lacking any specific image credit pages. They are subtitled (most of them), which often includes a credit (but not always - plus sometimes the photographer is credited, who may actually be the creator in some cases). Some others are book covers (often without credits, or the publisher is credited). Still others are small illustrations from the 1900s without title or credit. --Kurst 17:40, 22 November 2017 (EST)

Unnumbered Pages at the start of a Book

There seems to be a conflict of opinion on how unnumbered pages at the start of a book should be referenced. I have received conflicting opinions from 2 moderators as to how they should be represented. What I am talking about is where there are a few unnumbered pages at the start, followed by the actual novel starting page with a number greater than 1. e.g. pages 1 to 4 have no number and the novel starts at numbered page 5. In this example Here I tried to number the interior art as on page 2 (without square brackets) as it is with the numbered range of the novel, however I was told that it should have square brackets. Previously when I amended This One I was told that the Page Number of the Map should not be in square brackets as, although the page was unnumbered then it was within the page number range. I am slightly confused. --AndyjMo 16:32, 22 November 2017 (EST)

This page may help to clear up the confusion. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 19:09, 22 November 2017 (EST)
The explanation only talks about what to do if there are unnumbered pages before Page 1. My problem is where the first numbered page is Page 5 and I want to reference something on unnumbered Page 2. Should the 2 be in square brackets or not? Also, if the book had 160 pages then should be page count be 160 or [4]+160 (to indicate that the first 4 pages are unnumbered? --AndyjMo 11:09, 23 November 2017 (EST)
It doesn't matter if page 2 is numbered or not: it's a regular page because you can "reach" it by counting backward from the first numbered page 5 and it's not below 1. The square brackets only become relevant if there is content before page 1 (not matter if page 1 is numbered or not) and you want to enter a title record for this extra content. this is an example: first numbered page is 5, counting backwards from there the interior art is on page -1. Since the interior art was entered as a title record it got page number "[1]".
As for the 160 pages: if the last numbered page is 160 and the content ends there, the publication has 160 pages and that has to go into page count. However, if there are unnumbered pages with content after p. 160 you count forwards towards the end of the novel (or story, essay). Square brackets are only needed if there is/are additional content(s) which need a separate content title (i.e. another story, essay etc.) beginning on unnumbered pages. There are some examples which might help you. Jens Hitspacebar 13:35, 23 November 2017 (EST)
I don't think that you will every get consensus about this. Each moderator seems to have their own view. I amended the page number and a moderator undid the change. So be it. --AndyjMo 06:46, 28 November 2017 (EST)

myths and legends and so on

i believe that these are generally considered genre, fantasy, right? In particular which i have temporary custody of, contains ~35 legends and myths, retold by modern folks with author credit.
On a more general note i know we don't include stuff like the books of the bible; is there a general underlying principle, or is it just an empirical thing? I'm thinking of all the various holy books out there of various religions and their overlap with the myth and legends genre... thanks. gzuckier 22:42, 23 November 2017 (EST)

I'd say that as a rule of thumb texts for religions that are still practiced would be out, whereas out-of-fashion ones are likely in. Stonecreek 23:44, 23 November 2017 (EST)
My personal opinion, which appears NOT to be the opinion of the database, is that stories that are told by authors who believe them to be true, OR who are writing to an audience who believes those stories to be true, should not be treated as "fiction". But if the author AND the audience understands these to be "made up" stories, then they belong here. (Aside: My 7 volume "Index to Fairy Tales", by Eastman/Ireland/Sprug, takes up nearly 11" on my shelves. It contains THOUSANDS of books and stories. We don't want to have to enter them all.) Chavey 22:32, 25 November 2017 (EST)
Yes, that'd be too much to include.
However, I'd say that in the case of the anthology in question the legends and myths are retold by modern authors, so likely neither author(s) nor reader(s) are supposedly believing in the texts. Stonecreek 06:24, 26 November 2017 (EST)

Occult Detective Quarterly

I'd like to enter & verify data for Occult Detective Quarterly #1 but have some questions.
1) The mag is POD and there is no pub date anywhere so I assume just leave the date as now entered with current note. There is a "made on" date on my edition on the last page - is that worthy of note? Is there justification for considering various printings for POD pubs since they could in theory be myriad?

Magazines are always entered in this database with the "cover date" as the date. In this case, the magazine is dated "Fall 2016" which would be entered as 2016-00-00. It wouldn't be a bad idea to make a note of when your verification copy was printed, in case someone with another copy notices any differences, but in my opinion, unless the differences are major it would just be a matter for a note, not for calling it a "different printing." --Vasha 17:27, 24 November 2017 (EST)

2) Current entry lists page numbers (from the TOC). There are NO page numbers in my copy, just the TOC numbers. Can I assume that that's the way it was originally as well, and assuming we're not considering my copy a separate printing, should I correct the page numbers to include brackets? Since there are no page numbers, the cover would be considered [1] etc. but if this is maintained the first title shown in TOC (as p.4) actually appears on p.[6] and, if followed throughout, would throw off all the TOC numbers by 2. Advice?

Hmm. My opinion (but I'm no expert) would be that you should give the page numbers as you suggest--it is indeed the standard way--and indicate what the TOC says in a comment. --Vasha 17:27, 24 November 2017 (EST)

3) Am I correct in assuming 8-1/2 x 11 perfect-bound POD mags are typed "tp" for the Format field?
I will add/correct data which will make some of the notes moot. Thanks, Doug / Vornoff 15:35, 24 November 2017 (EST)

Somehow my aging eyes missed the date on the publisher page. Jeez. I've submitted many changes for this pub - we'll see how it looks if accepted- thanks, Vasha. Doug / Vornoff 22:34, 24 November 2017 (EST)

myths and legends and so on continued

that brings up the morass of kids' books. is there a guiding principle to allow one to ignore the multitude of talking geese and well dressed foxes walking on two legs etc., yet still include something like the brothers grimm or mother goose? I notice that magic schoolbus, for instance, doesn't seem to be included. thanks gzuckier 23:11, 24 November 2017 (EST)

Our rules of inclusion specifically forbid "Animal books for very young children, i.e. books for preschoolers which depict simple scenes from animal life featuring anthropomorphized animals.". (That "i.e." should really be an "e.g.".) One rule that I use that helps, although it's not enough, is: If there is no interaction between the talking animals and humans, then it doesn't qualify." Thus, for example, almost all of Beatrix Potter's wonderful fantasies about Peter Rabbit and other animals are excluded, even though they imply a fantastical world, but "The Tailor of Gloucester" is included, because one human (the Tailor) becomes aware of the fantastical abilities of the mice. (Also, IMHO, the Magic Schoolbus series really should be included.) Chavey 22:41, 25 November 2017 (EST)
Magic School Bus is in the database. -- JLaTondre (talk) 23:36, 25 November 2017 (EST)
Aha,i thought schoolbus was one word.
So I guess is genre, more because of the lunar travel angle than the blue humanoid hippos.thanks. gzuckier 23:58, 25 November 2017 (EST)
Except we generally don't allow picture books. At least that's what I've been told. It's not specifically excluded at ISFDB:Policy#Contents/Project Scope Policy. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 02:16, 26 November 2017 (EST)
That is a good filter. thanks. gzuckier 02:27, 26 November 2017 (EST)

mystery number on copyright page

i notice sometimes there is an unexplained number on the copyright page, e.g. my copy of "The Mirror of Merlin" has

"Printed in the U.S.A. 40"

independent of the printing and year number lines. Is this anything meaningful? thanks. gzuckier 23:18, 26 November 2017 (EST)


accidentally cancelled hefty update after submitting it. any way to uncancel it? thanks. gzuckier 00:35, 3 December 2017 (EST)

Alas, no, you have to re-enter it, but what might help is that you don't need to type in everything again: you can still access your cancelled submission on your My Recent Rejections page and copy-paste everything from there. Just find the cancelled submission on that page and click on the submission id. Jens Hitspacebar 05:41, 3 December 2017 (EST)
yeah, as with most things second time went quicker. thanks. gzuckier 20:26, 3 December 2017 (EST)

illustrator billing

when illustrators get equal credit with the authors on the cover, title page, etc, do they get an author entry on the pub page, or just interiorart? thanks. gzuckier 01:42, 3 December 2017 (EST)

Illustrators only get credited as author of the publication if they also contributed text to it, or if they are also the EDITOR (if it's a magazine, anthology, etc.). If the illustrator only contributed artwork he or she only gets credited in the "Cover Art" section (for the cover artwork) or with one or more INTERIORART records (for illustrations inside the publication), no matter how prominently the illustrator's name is stated in the publication. Jens Hitspacebar 05:54, 3 December 2017 (EST)
But this doesn't seem to be the case for all entries! I'd say if author & illustrator are credited jointly, without differentiating between text and art, both should be credited. But if there's something like Story: Author X, Illustration: Artist Y, only Author X would be credited for the publication. Stonecreek 08:01, 3 December 2017 (EST)
yes, that's right. My answer was too general and doesn't work for all publications. Mass: The Art of John Harris is an example. But I'd say this example is one of the exceptions from the rule because it's a book about the art of the artist. On the other hand, this publication of The Lord of the Rings is heavily illustrated by Alan Lee with the artist's name credited prominently, nevertheless Alan Lee is not entered as author. Jens Hitspacebar 12:17, 3 December 2017 (EST)
it's not always clear; like which from the amazon look inside, doesn't do much to identify meilo so as the illustrator, except in her biography. so if the illustrator gets equal billing on the cover and title and copyright page...?gzuckier 20:30, 3 December 2017 (EST)
Since the title page actually seems to be missed out, the thing to go with here is the copyright section, which makes the differentiation: I changed this one. Stonecreek 00:00, 4 December 2017 (EST)
There are a substantial number of books, especially "classic" fairy tales, in which the author (who has adapted the classic text) is not credited at all, and the ONLY person credited on the cover or the title page is the artist. The view there is that it's the artist's interpretation of the story that makes it more original than the rewrite of the story itself. Too bad. The author is listed as "uncredited" and the artist gets a cover art and interior art credit. This is about consistency, not about who gets "top billing". Chavey 04:03, 4 December 2017 (EST)
thanks gzuckier 15:09, 4 December 2017 (EST)

different excerpts of bigger work

a couple of entries under Henry Wadsworth Longfellow are excerpts from Hiawatha. (the ghosts and the famine). any way or reason to link them somehow? both variants of hiawatha? thanks. gzuckier 20:41, 3 December 2017 (EST)

If they are the same excerpt and the same title, they should be merged. If the are the same excerpt and different titles, they should be varianted. The key is knowing that they are the same which can be difficult with excerpts. If it's a chapter, that is an easy case, but editors sometimes use more unique portions. The only linkage back to the original work is the use of title notes. Varianting is for the same work under a different title, not a variant in the work itself (translations, while using the same linkage mechanism as varaiants, are a different case). -- JLaTondre (talk) 07:25, 4 December 2017 (EST)
ok, implemented. thanks. gzuckier 15:10, 4 December 2017 (EST)

pdf count as verification?

specifically, does this count as verification for the printed edition which wasscanned? thanks. gzuckier 13:42, 10 December 2017 (EST)

I don't believe there is agreement on this subject. Some editors do so, but in the past I have seen other editors say it shouldn't count. I can see both sides. If done, it should be stated in the notes that it was based on the scan and not the actual book. -- JLaTondre (talk) 18:24, 10 December 2017 (EST)
The biggest problem that I have seen with PDF scans is low quality and/or imperfect OCR. For example, the original may say "1917" but the OCR software read it as "1911", so we have to be careful. Ahasuerus 19:32, 10 December 2017 (EST)
OK, thanks. this one looks pretty clear and i think it's a significant publication we won't see in the flesh, so i'll go for it, while keeping case by case judgement in the future. gzuckier 19:39, 10 December 2017 (EST)
I've been thinking that we should have some sort of "electronic copy" verification. It could encompass PDFs/OCR scans, Look Inside, Google Books, and perhaps others. In fact, maybe each ought to be its own separate item (since, for example, Look Inside is partial, while a PDF might be the full publication). Actually confirming facts out of one of these things often will be as good as, or better than, secondhand information from some of our other secondary sources. Yes, it's a little tricky to make sure the electronic copy represents the same publication and edition, but it still seems worthwhile, and the cost of someone goofing up such a verification is low. --MartyD 08:06, 12 December 2017 (EST)
I like this idea. ···日本穣 · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe 20:14, 27 December 2017 (EST)

Library of Congress

Is it just me or is anyone else having problems in accessing the Library of Congress database. Since Saturday every time I link to LCCN I get a page saying that they have "Technical Difficulties" and to try again later. Are they on their Christmas holidays or is it something I need to do at my end? --AndyjMo 17:19, 11 December 2017 (EST)

I've been seeing the same thing since late last week. I've submitted a question and will let folks know if they respond. --Ron ~ RtraceTalk 19:17, 11 December 2017 (EST)
And I've already received a response: "Unfortunately, due to a high number of requests from external sources submitted to the Library's online catalog, we have had to temporarily restrict catalog access to on-campus users only. This shouldn't last for more than an additional day or two." They do give links to their Z39.50 Gateway and their Authorities search, but neither of those allow me to look up the LCCN from a title, alas. Hopefully they'll be back up soon. --Ron ~ RtraceTalk 21:24, 11 December 2017 (EST)
This is the same response I had from the Library. Just hope it's not a permanent thing. --AndyjMo 05:46, 12 December 2017 (EST)
Linking and searching the Library now seems to be back to 'normal'. --AndyjMo 17:01, 12 December 2017 (EST)

When is Nelson Doubleday not a book club edition?

I have an edition of The Dragon and the George by Gordon R. Dickson that doesn't seem to line up with the existing book club editions by Doubleday here. The front flap does not have a price, but does not say book club edition. The imprint on the title page is "Nelson Doubleday, Inc.", "Garden City, New York". The copyright page has the copyright, "Published by arrangement with Ballantine Books", "Printed in the United States of America" and the ISBN of 0-345-35050-2. The back jacket flap has nothing but the end of the précis, jacket art credit and "Printed in the U.S.A.". The back cover has the code 02770 in a rectangle. There is no gutter code. And while the cover image matches, the font for the title and author is quite different. The ISBN matches two other printings with very different covers (e.g. here). The later ISBN (Ballantine has other editions preceding the ones with this ISBN) suggests a re-issue by Nelson Doubleday under the Ballantine ISBN. And the boards are gold, but there's a brown spine wrapping around to about an inch of the boards, and the only printing on the spine is gold.

Some things indicate a book club edition, others do not. Do I code this as a variant of the book club edition or create a new entry? If a new entry, is it still Nelson Doubleday / SFBC? Doug H 17:36, 15 December 2017 (EST)

For the record, this is what I submitted. Doug H 11:08, 27 December 2017 (EST)

Title rules

There seems to be some inconsistency in the titling of the Dark Tower series. I had made two edits here and here with the understanding that the we used the title as it appeared on the title page. This matches some of entries and is different than others.. The editor's rejection comment is 'Publication’s title is correct, it should mirror the title proper'. I followed the direction of For a book, use the title page to get the title. What is the correct way to enter titles? TAWeiss 21:53, 17 December 2017 (EST)

At that page, it states 'Note that the title page may show the series name, and sometimes the publication's position in the series. It is left to the editor's discretion as to whether this should be part of the "title" that you enter for the publication.' While under subtitle, that also applies when it is before the title. Series information is optional in the publication title and is not considered part of the title proper (i.e. it should not be present in the title record). I'm not sure why it would have been rejected since you are the sole verifier. -- JLaTondre (talk) 22:29, 17 December 2017 (EST)
I rejected it since 'The Dark Tower' seems to belong to the series information. Does it really make sense to have the series title doubled in the publication?
In every case the title of the publication should in fact mirror the title proper. So, if the two titles differ, there also has to be an unmerge and a varianting (which weren't submitted). To ensure the quality of ISFDB would you like to find out for which other publications this would be the case? Stonecreek 03:44, 18 December 2017 (EST)
No, that is not correct. When the publication title adds the series information, we do not create a new title record. There are many, many records that way because that is the way the standard has been. The same as we don't have to create a new title record when a publication has a subtitle. From the standards perspective, the proper title still matches. If you want a change, you should really be addressing this at Rules & Standards vs. making a unilateral change. And if the standard is changed, there will be a lot of edits required. Personally, I would be fine doing it your way, but we haven't in the past and I think this should be discussed, have agreement, & the help updated first. It's already confusing enough for new editors. -- JLaTondre (talk) 07:17, 18 December 2017 (EST)
Sorry to disagree, but I'd think it is the other way around; at least I can't find a passage that'd allow different publication titles under the same hood. I know that we have it that way, because we haven't been that stringent in the past. Hell, a short time ago we even did list foreign language titles under one and the same title entry. I think we are still in progress to sort things out.
The relevant passages I found on differentiating titles are those (emphasisizing by me): If something is a candidate for merging, then the titles should match exactly (that should mean also that titles that doesn't match exactly shouldn't be merged into one title), and
Don't confuse separate publications with separate titles (which essentially seems to mean the same).
So, if two publications don't have the same title (as would be given when adding a subtitle or a series heading), they shouldn't be merged. Stonecreek 08:48, 18 December 2017 (EST)
We use a mixture of written help and standard practices. Our standard practice has not been to create separate title records (not simply because we haven't been applying the rules stringently, but because people felt such differences didn't warrant a new title record). And if you want to apply the written help literally, then you should have accepted that edit because that was valid per the help. You're cherry picking your choice of adherence. And as for your quotes, they are talking about title record titles, not publication titles. They are not the same thing (which is what the second quote is getting at). As I said before, I would prefer your implementation, but it's clear other editors and moderators don't. If we want to start applying this implementation, then the help needs to be updated and a lot of cleanup needs to occur (both in removing series information from publication titles and in separating out title records). That is something that should have community buy in vs. individual implementation in my opinion. That is my primary point (not disagreement with the idea) so not going to continue arguing. -- JLaTondre (talk) 10:17, 18 December 2017 (EST)
If a new publication is entered, assuming that it has also the series title stated, a new title record is automatically generated: then we'd have the fact that two different title records are in the database, and shouldn't be merged, according to the rules. That we have them merged is grounded in the past, that's all I'm saying. The question is if we decide to sort things out (or better which way we choose). Stonecreek 11:59, 18 December 2017 (EST)

(unindent) A couple of points.

First, our documentation can be confusing because we use the word "title" to refer to 2 different things: "title records" and "title fields". Both title records and publication records contain "title fields", hence the terms "title title" and "publication title", which are difficult to parse, especially if you are a new editor. There is a Feature Request to Change "titles" to "works", which is long overdue. Once the software change has been made, "title title" will become "work title", which should eliminate the confusion.

Second, under the original data entry rules both "title titles" and "publication titles" could contain series names and subtitles. Later on the rules were changed to discourage editors from entering series name and generic subtitles like "A Novel" in the "title title" field. However, the rules were not changed for "publication title" field, which created the discrepancy discussed above: many "publication titles" are longer than the "title titles" of the pub's main or "reference" titles. This discrepancy is currently supported by our cleanup reports, which only check that the title of each publication's reference title is contained within the "publication title".

Going forward, I agree that it would be beneficial to change the data entry rules to enforce "title title"/"publication title" consistency and that we may want to discuss this issue on the Rules and Standards page. Ahasuerus 13:12, 18 December 2017 (EST)

Das Ende von Hyperion

Hello, I try to add the cover artists of this publication. I don't see the artists Unknown, when I click edit, everthing looks good. What is wrong? Regards Henna 13:50, 26 December 2017 (EST)

When the artists are not entered to the publication before uploading the image, they have to be added manually to the wiki page! Christian Stonecreek 14:00, 26 December 2017 (EST)
I added the artists to the wiki page:
|Artist1=Gábor Szikszai
|Artist2=Zoltán Boros
but they are not shown in the Image Data. Thanks Henna 08:25, 27 December 2017 (EST)
That's because if you change it from one to multiple artists, a different wiki template is needed. It is currently using wiki template CID1, which supports a single artist only. You have to change the template to CID1-2 to get support for two artists "Artist1" and "Artist2". I just made the change. Jens Hitspacebar 08:45, 27 December 2017 (EST)
Thanks for your help Henna 08:48, 27 December 2017 (EST)
I just learned that myself and made additions to the help. See ISFDB:Community_Portal#Cover_image_wiki_page_templates_and_help_update. Jens Hitspacebar 09:54, 27 December 2017 (EST)
Hello Jens, thanks again Henna 10:48, 30 December 2017 (EST)

Identifying deleted books

It seems to me that a few years ago I entered my 1794 edition of Ann Radcliffe's "The Mysteries of Udolpho". It seems to me that I remember writing up some details as to why I felt it belonged in here. But looking now, that title does not appear in our database (although a 2007 publication of "Part II", and an extract, do exist). Is there any reasonable way for me to identify whether my memory is failing me, or whether someone else deleted that book? Chavey 16:20, 26 December 2017 (EST)

The Mysteries of Udolpho is currently in the database, including your verified 1794 edition. There may have been a typo in the search string -- what did you search for? Ahasuerus 17:08, 26 December 2017 (EST)
Aha! I had just looked up Ann Radcliffe, but it's down under the non-genre books on her page, and I just hadn't scrolled down far enough to see it. I should probably write up a justification for why it belongs on the genre side, then move it up. (It's in Bleiler, The Guide to Supernatural Fiction; Ashley, Who's Who in Horror and Fantasy Fiction; Barron), Fantasy Literature; Barron, Horror Literature. Bleiler, Supernatural Fiction Writers; and Sullivan, The Penguin Encyclopedia of Horror and the Supernatural. That's probably enough to justify it as being genre.) Chavey 19:34, 26 December 2017 (EST)
hi, it was me entered it as nongenre; i didn't see anything fantastic, just gothic atmosphere. but i don't particularly mind one way or the other. gzuckier 01:59, 28 December 2017 (EST)

delete an image

coulfd somebody delete this file thanks. gzuckier 01:53, 28 December 2017 (EST)

Done Annie 02:46, 28 December 2017 (EST)