19

Alfred Bester's novel The Demolished Man was initially published (in Galaxy magazine) with such character names as “T8”, “$$son”, “@kins” and “¼maine” (a precursor to SMS-speak). The subsequent book publication greatly toned down the use of such abbreviations. Short of locating old issues of Galaxy, is the original version available somewhere?

ISFDB does not mention any differing versions. My source for the existence of the original version is Randall Garrett's review in verse in Takeoff!.

  • I read the The Demolished Man not long and never found any SMS-Speak names in it. The version must have removed or renamed them. – scope_creep Jan 17 '11 at 2:26
  • There is a very second hand book shop, close to where I'll live, with a vast SF section. I'll check it out. – scope_creep Jan 18 '11 at 23:43
  • @scope_creep: My edition has “Samuel @kins” midway through chapter i. In the original, Tate (mentioned in the same sentence) was called “T8”. – user56 Jan 18 '11 at 23:53
  • The copy I read had the abbreviations. Sadly I think it was borrowed. – Christi Jun 28 '12 at 13:00
  • As with Gilles, my copy has @kins, ¼maine and Wyg&, but not T8 or $$son. It's a Pocket paperback from around 1980. – Mike Scott Jun 28 '12 at 16:21
5

The book "Galaxy, thirty years of innovative science fiction" states the story was published as "Demolished" in 1952, but I can't find any reprints in anthologies.

However, you can buy DVD collections of Galaxy stories on eBay.

6

My copy is packed away somewhere, but it has this cover:

enter image description here

... and it has the SMS-ish abbreviations. According to the web page where I found that picture, it's the 5th printing by Signet.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy