Earlier that same year, the top brass of the New York publishing company Street & Smith asked two of the most established top-line adventure writers of the day, Arthur J. Burkes and L. Ron Hubbard, to begin writing a new kind of science fiction story where people, not machines or gadgets, were central to the story. They were introduced to the now-legendary editor John W. Campbell, Jr., publisher of Astounding Science Fiction. From that moment on, the Science Fiction’s Golden Age was in full swing.
“Dangerous Dimension” was the first of thirty-one stories and novels—under his own name and such pen names as Rene Lafayette and Kurt van Rachen—that would appear in Astounding alone over the next twelve years and proved instrumental in making it the most influential publication for this developing genre.
Science fiction was also the final genre that Hubbard wrote for when, in celebration of 50 years as a writer, he penned the 428,750 word Battlefield Earth followed by his 1.2 million word magnum opus, 10-volume Mission Earth series. In his introduction to Battlefield Earth, Hubbard provided perhaps the best reason as to why this was the last genre he wrote in, “Science fiction does NOT come after the fact of a scientific discovery or development. It is the herald of possibility. It is the plea that someone should work on the future. Yet it is not prophecy. It is the dream that precedes the dawn when the inventor or scientist awakens and goes to his books or his lab saying, ‘I wonder whether I could make that dream come true in the world of real science.’”
L. Ron Hubbard’s Golden Age science fiction has once again become available through the Stories from the Golden Age, a line of 80 books containing 153 stories written in all popular genres including science fiction, fantasy, mystery, adventure and western.
For more information about the Stories from the Golden Age, go to www.goldenagestories.com