Cordwainer Smith Illustrated Bibliography,
by Mike Bennett
This is a humble tribute to one of most
original writers that science fiction has ever known:
Cordwainer Smith, pen name of Paul Myron Anthony
Linebarger. His bold and inspired visions of the future
have been admired by such noteworthies as Ursula K.
LeGuin, Robert Silverberg and Harlan Ellison.
Unfortunately, in a short career that barely spanned a
decade, he left us little more than one novel and
thirty-four stories. But such is the power of these
stories that, in all the years since his death, they have
refused to be forgotten and most are still in print
The bibliography you are reading has been a labour of love.
The publication of The Instrumentality of Mankind in
1979 brought to my attention several of his stories that I had
never seen before. I decided to find a comprehensive Cordwainer
Smith checklist but the failure of my search coincided with the
realization that I had already collected enough material to
write one myself!
No sooner said than begun. But as the fifth year as
researcher went by, I realized that the completion of this
checklist is an arbitrary point. Since all of my work was
involved with researching the various editions of all the
anthologies in which any of his stories have appeared, the
amount of unfinished work had been increasing exponentially
while the actual value of the information was decreasing
steadily. And since it seemed more important that the work be
used by concerned individuals, my work was deemed done, leaving
further exploration into the eternal and dusty halls of
research to more intrepid souls.
The bibliography you are reading has posed a serious
dilemma for me. What I wanted was a Cordwainer Smith checklist.
In my talks with Chris Drumm, the original checklist's
publisher, we both agreed that at least a bibliographical nod
of the head should go to the rest of Paul M. A. Linebarger's
work. As I unearthed more and more articles, novels and
scholarly works, I began to realize that Cordwainer Smith was
but one facet of a fascinating and quite brilliant man. It
seemed unfair to ignore the non-science-fictional material and
yet to include it would overwhelm the checklist, making
Cordwainer Smith's works hard to find and provide no
continuity. Since Paul M. A. Linebarger kept his public life
completely separate from his science fiction career, we shall
do the same. The result you now see: A Cordwainer Smith
Checklist, with a Paul M. A. Linebarger Checklist appended.
Notes on this Edition
Drumm Booklet #37 (1991)
Help File 1.0 (July 2000)
Help File 1.1 (November 2000)
HTML Web Page 1.0 (March 2002)
HTML Web Pages 2.0 (July 2008)
My original checklist was published by Chris Drumm as Drumm
Booklet #37 in 1991, several years after I had finished my
research and submitted it to him. I was pleased to see it in
print and to put the work down for a while. Since then,
Ria has been reprinted by Jwindz and NESFA has
reprinted all of CS's stories in 2 beautiful volumes.
The short story collection
includes the long-lost "War No. 81-Q"'s revised edition and
the shamefully delayed "Himself In Anachron" while
complete with the crazy-quilt of additions and changes added
to the original manuscript.
These events, along with the growth of the Web as a
publishing medium, stimulated my interest in updating the
checklist and placing into a new and more changeable
When I was writing the original checklist, I noticed that
reprinting of the stories in anthology editions was starting to
overwhelm the original printing and book entries. And when I
started this edition, I expected to simply reprint the
checklist in help file format but the problem of the anthology
listings remain: they increase the size of the checklist at the
expense of clarity and interest. So I have decided to omit all
anthology reprintings, listing only original printings and
books issued under the name of Cordwainer Smith, PMAL or any
other pseudonym. Paul M. A. Linebarger entries will continue to
have their own checklist as explained in the Introduction.
I wanted to extend thanks to two very important people who
have affected the final result you see: Alan Elms for his eagle
eyes and patience and Rosana Hart for selflessly allowing
herself to be the focal point for all of us Cordwainer Smith
The research for this Help File began in the usual reference
books like Contenta's and Strauss' indices and Currey's
bibliography. As my lists grew longer, I did much checking of
second-hand bookstores and library scouring, to the point of
checking all the anthologies I could find!
There are 2 items that are recommended reading:
- Concordance to Cordwainer
Smith, by Anthony Lewis:a thorough cross-reference
of details, names and places in the Instrumentality
- Science Fiction Review #48, Fall 1983: has
J.J. Pierce's article "Treasure of the Secret Cordwainer"
which is about unpublished stories, revisions and a
multitude of CS miscellany. Write to: Science Fiction
Review, Box 11408, Portland, OR 97211
[Update from Rosana: the Concordance can be purchased
online; the link above takes you to my page about it. I
didn't find a way to purchase the Science Fiction Review
issue online and don't know if that address is still current.
Interlibrary loan is a possibility for that item.]
AAAPSS Annals of the American Academy of Political and
CS Cordwainer Smith
PMAL Paul Myron Anthony Linebarger
PMWL Paul Myron Wentworth Linebarger, PMAL's father