When I abandoned activity in fandom in 1958, shortly after the Solacon, the most important thing I left behind was a collection of papers all written by Walter A. Willis.
The actual soliciting had been almost completed, but I had little hope of it ever really being completed. I had good intentions of continuing work on the volume even in gafia (since I had told Willis I would see that it was published whether I gafiated or not).
But I underestimated the co-editor, publications manager, purchasing agent, and old friend of mine, Ted Johnstone (his name was changed to protect the innocent). Ted went ahead, financed and published the volume, and got it ready in time for the 1961 World Con. He, and those who helped him, deserve my thanks for not making me out a liar ...
This is my final contribution to fandom (for the time being) and even considering the little work I actually did on it, I hope you remember I gave the work the initial shove. I only wish I could have found the time from school, work, and painting (not to mention parties) to work on the actual publication.
I know everyone who likes Willis will enjoy reading the collection, which was a good enough reason to make an effort to publish it. There is not very much you can say about the writing herein except that it is not the usual trite, dull writing you usually read in fandom. Rather, this writing is extremely subjective, intelligent, and entertaining.
It will undoubtedly go into many printings -- of course, if we could print better, we wouldn't have to do it over.
As for my personal and social life of late (I'm sure you are all interested in that ...) I have been busy. Maybe I will pull a General MacArthur, but then I don't think I'd like the Phillipines. A lot of people would like me shipped there, but I'd only turn in the ticket and go to Hawaii instead.
So who is to say what will happen -- The Willis Papers will be the first thing I will have read thoroughly (from the fan world) in years. The noise I hear from fandom is no louder than the fall of dust.
But at least I started something, and that is a means to an end.
Here is the end ...
-- George W. Fields
Data entry by Judy Bemis