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Writing Date

Pub. Date





<Jul 8, 1953


The Golden Man

The Last Of The Masters




   "The Turning Wheel", another long, involved story, followed "The Golden Man’ to the SMLA, arriving on July 8, 1953. It was published in Science Fiction Stories #2 in 1954. It was first collected in A HANDFUL OF DARKNESS in 1955 and, in 1973, in THE BOOK OF PHILIP K. DICK (published in the UK in 1977 as THE TURNING WHEEL And Other Stories)

    By July 1953, PKD was sending stories to the Agency at the rate of three a month. Sometimes it was two, sometimes four. But, into his second year as a full-time writer, he had found his groove. In 1952, his first year, the stories came fast and furiously, sometimes as many as six in one month. After August of 1953 his production slowed. "The Turning Wheel", in early July, 1953, falls in the middle of a period when PKD was stretching out his stories. This period can be said to start with "Time Pawn" in June and end with "To Serve The Master" in late October. After that, he returned to shorter short stories with "The Crawlers."

    June 1953 saw six more of PKD’s short stories published: "Colony," "Impostor," "Martians Come In clouds," "Paycheck," "The Cookie Lady" and "The Preserving Machine." One can only imagine the satisfaction seeing all these magazines on the stands at one time gave to PKD.

Other Magazine and Anthology appearances.         More Cover Pix here: aaaPKDickBooks.jpg (3234 bytes)

1955 A HANDFUL OF DARKNESS, Rich & Cowan, hb, ?, 1955, ?,? (?)        
1965 TurnWheel65.jpg (11885 bytes) NOW & BEYOND, Belmont, pb, B50-646, 1965, ?, $0.50, (?) {Ed. Howard}  
1973 bookofPKDDAW1973.jpeg (6917 bytes) THE BOOK OF PHILIP K. DICK, DAW, pb, 44, ?, 1973, ?,? (?)  
1977 bookofPKDCor1977.jpg (9285 bytes) THE TURNING WHEEL And Other Stories, Coronet, pb, ?, 1977, ?, ? (?)  
1987 csopkd3a.jpg (7120 bytes) THE COLLECTED STORIES OF PKD, Vol.3.  
1987   IMPERIAL STARS, Vol.2: Republic and Empire, Baen, pb, 1987, ?, ?  (?) {Ed. Pournelle}  


TTHC 244

     Hubbard, {...}, was a writer the teenage Phil Dick had admired. Dianetics, advertising itself as a radical new means of psychotherapy by which subjects could rapidly rid themselves of past traumas, was launched in 1950 with a heavily promoted spread in John W. Campbell's Astounding. A.E. Van Vogt, another sf writer whose works had greatly affected Dick, was one of many individuals who became actively involved in the Dianetics crusade. Dorothy Hudner {PKD's mom} was another. "When Dorothy was interested in Dianetics," says Kleo, "she tried to get us interested too. The main problem was that Philip had been familiar with the writing of L. Ron Hubbard when he was a lousy science fiction writer, and it was pretty hard to take seriously anything that he was doing." (Phil may have admired "Fear" and others of Hubbard's writings, but by the time he wrote his 1954 short story "The Turning Wheel" he was ridiculing "Elron Hu" as founder of a worldwide religion -- which Dianetics evolved into as Scientology.)

SRG 43

    "The Turning Wheel" heralds in the title a change of different sort. In this future alternate possibility the gap between philosophy and technology seems unbridgeable. After a devastating 500 years of manmade destiny, the Bards now rule by a mystical philosophy, relegating human reason to a low status and technological knowledge to the low-caste Technos in the ghetto of society. As the existent machines of communication and transportation gradually wear out, the political power of the Bards becomes more tenuous. Opposition grows as the Tinkerists, a cult-like group devoted to the care of machinery, attracts support from the more populous Technos. To the Bards this forebodes Yeats' "rough beast, it's time come round at last," but for the Tinkers it is the future inevitable as the turning wheel of the endless cycle of human existence moves them upward to power.

Collector’s Notes


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