While Philip K. Dick is one of today's most revered and bestselling science fiction authors, he spent much of his career in near-poverty. Because of relative obscurity throughout much of his life, many of Dick’s works received modest initial print runs. In addition, unlike many of his science fiction peers, Dick attended precious few signings, making him one of the most collectible names in modern science fiction.
In the early 1950s, Dick embarked on his writing career by publishing short stories in science fiction pulps, but made the jump to novels after one of his idols, A.E. Van Vogt, convinced him that there was far more money in to be made in that format. While Dick never completely gave up on short stories, he concentrated his prodigious output and published more than 40 novels in his life. His output is made all the more impressive when you consider that his later years were marked by poor health, both mental and physical.
Despite his ill health and limited financial success, Dick’s career was packed with accolades from the science fiction community. In 1963 he won the Hugo Award for The Man in the High Castle, set in an alternate history where the Axis powers won WWII. Additionally, Dick went on to win several other awards including the John W. Campbell Award for Flow My Tears, the Policeman Said and the British Science Fiction Association Award for A Scanner Darkly. While Dick was never awarded the highly prestigious Nebula Award he was nominated for it five times: Dr. Bloodmoney, The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, Flow My Tears, the Policeman Said, and The Transmigration of Timothy Archer.
Dick only achieved mainstream appreciation shortly after his death when, in 1982, his novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? was brought to the big screen by Ridley Scott in the form of Blade Runner. The movie initially received lukewarm reviews but emerged as a cult hit opening the film floodgates. Since Dick's passing, seven more of his stories have been turned into films including Total Recall (originally We Can Remember It for You Wholesale), The Minority Report, Screamers (Second Variety), Imposter, Paycheck, Next (The Golden Man) and A Scanner Darkly. Averaging roughly one movie every three years, this rate of cinematic adaptation is exceeded only by Stephen King. More recently, in 2005, Time Magazine named Ubik one of the 100 greatest English-language novels published since 1923, and in 2007 Philip K. Dick became the first sci-fi writer to be included in the Library of America series.
9. Dr. Bloodmoney or, How We Got Along After The Bomb
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Published by Gregg Press, first hardcover edition from 1977 including an introduction by Norman Spinrad. This hardcover edition was predated by a paperback edition (which is shown above).
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