Chicago . Los Angeles


366 Madison Avenue . New York 17, New York . Phone MUrray Hill 7-8080

October 24, 1951

Dr. J. Lloyd Eaton
2524 Telegraph Avenue
Berkeley 4, California

Dear Dr. Eaton,

The July-August, 1951, issue of Rhodomagnetic Digest, containing a facsimile of Horace Gold's letter defending the editorial policies of Amazing Stories, has been brought to my attention.

Not having read David G. Spencer's review mentioned by Mr. Gold, I cannot make specific comments on it myself - although I have little doubt that it was as reckless and superficial as other fanzine reviews of the Ziff-Davis science-fantasy publications. But I am gratified by Mr. Gold's cogent and dispassionate remarks - although it seems certain he has wasted his time. Reason is largely wasted on the unreasoning, just as the blind are to be aided but not followed.

It would seem that amateur publications should learn the difference between criticism and calumny. For reviewers to stop dead after the use of such phrases as "An outstanding example of poor judgment, carelessness and a general to-hell-with-what-the-readers-want" is certainly not criticism, but only a bad tempered and infantile attack, without meaning, without value, without authority.

If Mr. Spencer - or Mr. Romanoff in your latest issue - has reasonable qualifications to act as critic, beyond an ability to read without moving his lips, why not list them? In that way your readers may best judge how seriously to take his remarks.



(Howard Browne)

Editor, Fiction Group

SINCE receiving Mr. Browne's letter, we have been watching Mr.
Spencer with eagle eye. We saw him move his lips several times
while reading AMAZING, but each time he was simply uttering a
short profanity, which we took to be a comment on the text rather
than difficulty with the words. So far as his reviewing qualifications
go, Mr. Spencer is a teaching fellow in the English department at
the University of California. He has his Ph.D. in English literature,
and his special field is the 18th Century. Good enough, Mr. Browne?
If a Ph.D. is too exalted a reviewer for AMAZING, let us introduce
Mr. Romanoff. A quite young man, an avid science fiction reader,
he is a regular - and quite typical - subscriber to AMAZING.

Data entry and page scans provided by Judy Bemis

Data entry by Judy Bemis

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