ComiCon Boston was this past weekend and I was blown away by some of the things that went on. We had a great booth there, made some wonderful new friends, got some great interviews and had such a moment of Déjà vu.
In 1972, I was unemployed, and would spend the mornings looking for work and afternoons in the local public library. I would wander through the stacks reading to escape the depression of my circumstances. I remember sitting and watching the Fischer-Spassky Chess Matches and being bored. So I went into the books and found The Man in the High Castle by Philip K. Dick. I remember clearly pulling the book off the shelf at 1:13pm and finishing it by the time the library closed that evening. I went home and began to compose a letter to Mr. Dick. In the letter, this ended up being 2 pages, handwritten, both sides, I tried to tell him what reading his book meant to me. There WAS another person who felt the way I did, whose life went from light to darkness and how reading this book had helped me to cope with my current circumstances and move forward. The following morning, the letter sealed in an envelope with stamp affixed, I walked back to the library, trying to find an address to send it to. A fruitless search for hours left me sending it to the publishers, to Mr. Dicks attention, and there it was, so I thought, the circle completed, assured in the knowledge that it would probably never get to him, even if it did, the odds of him reading it were even smaller, and there was no chance he would respond.
Flash forward about a month later. The 6 page typewritten letter appears in my mailbox from Mr. Dick. This became the beginning of a correspondence relationship that continued until his breakdown, 16 months later. The treasured letters are always a part of me. I read everything of his I could find. When he died I felt robbed. I then found The Secret Ascension by Michael Bishop in1988. The line that resonated in my head was:
“Philip K. Dick is dead, alas. Let’s all get together and kick Gods ass.”
That about covered it for me.
Fast forward one last time to last weekend. I met so many wonderful people but spent almost an hour with the incredibly talented David Mack. X and I talked about his past work and his present series Kabuki (check this series out. It is amazing and beautiful). During the course of the interview I mentioned, “so, what’s coming up for you?”. David then proceeded to tell X and I that he had been working with the estate of Philip K. Dick to converts his collections of short stories into comic book form. The conversation went on for almost an hour and I felt I had made a new friend and ally.
We promised to keep in touch and he will be on the podcast very soon for an hour all about Mr. Dick. David, thank you so much for your time on Sunday and for the project you are about to undertake.