Science fiction’s deep roots are in the the enlightenment utopian fiction of the 1900s, but their transformation into the genre we know today happened in the short stories of the pulps. From the glory days of Hugo Gernsback and Amazin Stories, to the wild explorations of the New Wave, science fiction’s history was largely written through short stories. What are the most influential science fiction short stories series and collections? Here’s more from Reactor Mag:
DANGEROUS VISIONS edited by Harlan Ellison
It’s hard to find a single volume of science fiction that won as many awards: two Nebulas, two Hugos, a special Worldcon award, and the LOCUS all-time poll for anthology. There were also an additional three Hugo and two Nebula nominations from this anthology. Of course, that’s tempered a bit when you consider all the nominations and wins went to six out of 32 stories, with the Fritz Leiber novelette winning both the Hugo and the Nebula. Still, that’s an impressive tally. I think this speaks more to the influence the anthology had rather than the staying power of the stories. Reading it today, some of the stories almost seem trite and many more do not hold up to the test of time. I think this is where it’s true power lies. This anthology changed the way that people read and wrote science fiction; it changed the way that people thought about science fiction. It was the first time that there were extended introductions (and sometimes afterwords) to each story. These days you’re hard-pressed to put together an anthology without writing a small expository piece for each story. I know that many people feel that this anthology was the death knell of the New Wave, but all movements have to come to an end at some time, so why not a glorious end like this? It certainly give a larger voice to the writing that was happening in many other venues. For that, I have to place Dangerous Visions at the top of my list.