Talk:Edmund Cooper

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Hi, I just wanted to add that in the book Jupiter Laughs there is a short story entitled Welcome Home. This short story was made in to a film called Mission to Mars in 2000. Ingotblue (talk) 18:37, 18 January 2011 (UTC)

Untitled[edit]

Edmund Cooper (April 30th 1926 - March 11th 1982)Critic, poet, playwright, short story writer, best known as a writer of British Science Fiction, published under his own name and several pseudonyms.

On advice the Literary Executor and legal copyright holder of the works and estate of Edmund Cooper, the Edmund Cooper Literary Trust, has removed the previous information on this site because of the factual errors and misleading information it contained. From the archives held by the Cooper Trust the present bibliography being compiled by The Trust runs to over eight hundred (800) pages which should give the reader some indication as to why the previous entry was so misleading and the extent the work being undertaken by The Trust.

Edmund Cooper set up the Literary Trust before he died to ensure the preservation of his archive and the accuracy of information on his life and works.

Once all permissions have been granted and all facts verified the Trust will then provide information about Edmund Cooper on this site.

The Trustees welcome enquiries about Cooper and the work of the Trust, if you have any enquiries about his autobiography, biography or bibliography, then you should contact Dee Page, Administrator for the Edmund Cooper Literary Trust by e-mail on dfpcantab@yahoo.co.uk—Preceding unsigned comment added by Dee page (talkcontribs) 2006-07-04t11:18:29z

Dee page, please indicate what is wrong with the 2006-07-03t22:04:31z version of the article, so it can be fixed; instead of blanking most of the article, which is considered vandalism. Challenging and removing unsourced info and copyright violations is fine, but please indicate when this is done in the edit summary. -- Jeandré, 2006-07-04t12:11z

The Trustees are an unresponsive bunch. As one of Edmund's sons I can say they have done a first class job of trying to stifle all information about Edmund and have done a pretty good job. As someone who actually knew the bloke I can safely say he would find what they do idiotic but then Edmund being Edmund wouldn't be surprised by this as Dee Page is a woman. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 213.38.213.226 (talk) 12:12, 26 February 2013 (UTC)

The Trustees[edit]

This page is not subject to the imprimatur of "the trustees" or of Dee Page. If there are inaccuracies, state what they are and/or correct them. Stop turning this page into a statement of the policies of the Literary Trust. Ben-w 17:05, 5 July 2006 (UTC)

[Edits requested.][edit]

Edmund Cooper
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia [The following corrections should be made to your entry - ]
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Edmund Cooper (April 30, 1926 - March 11, 1982) [critic, playright,] poet, [writer of short stories and best known as a writer of British] science fiction [ delete and detective novels – hardly relevant as he only wrote one], published under his own name and several pen names.
Contents[hide]· 1 Biography · 2 Work and Criticism · 3 Publications o 3.1 Novels § 3.1.1 As Martin Lester § 3.1.2 As George Kinley § 3.1.3 As Broderick Quain § 3.1.4 As Richard Avery o 3.2 Short Stories (collections) o 3.3 Screenplays · 4 Notes
[edit]
Biography
Born in Marple, Cheshire, Cooper left school at 15 and joined the Merchant Navy [wrong – he did not join the Merchant Navy at the age of 15]. After World War II, he trained as a teacher and began to publish short stories. [Short stories, poetry and novels had been published both in the UK and USA during his Merchant Navy Service – 1944-46 – infact he had started writingf at the age of 14 and his first story was published when he was 16 – his first poem was published a year earlier] His first novel, Deadly Image [not his first novel](later republished [a new UK edition was published the next year with a variant text and cannot be considered as anything other than a new book] as The Uncertain Midnight) was completed in 1957 [not completed in 1957 but in late 56] and published in 1958. [It is important to note that Seed of Light was written in 1955, but not published until 1959 and this applies to a lot of his work It is interesting to note that a study of his poetry indicates that many of the titles and plots of his novels had been established in his poetry and with an ouevre of more than eight hundred and fifty poems and over four hundred short stories, many of the plots of these were enlarged into novels] A 1956 short story, Brain Child, was adapted as the movie The Invisible Boy (1957). Several of his early works were published under pseudonyms as Cooper was not proud of them [This is not true and if you intend to make personal statements of this nature you must verify them or remove them – at no time did Cooper say that he was not proud of any of his work and his autobiography states quite the opposite]
By 1968, Cooper had achieved enough success to commit to writing full time [This is totally incorrect as he was living off his literary earings and writing full time by the age of 25 i.e. 1951 – there was a hiatus in his literary career when he left the woman he considered his inspiration and lived with Valerie Makin, who was to become his second wife]. The following year The Uncertain Midnight was [subject to a court case when it was plagiarised – the plagiarist used Cooper’s book to enter a Swiss TV competition] adapted for Swiss television, in French [as we have told Stokes, do not believe everything you read on the blurb of a book! ]. At the height of his modest [on whose judgement and by whose standard – Cooper was regarded as the catalyst who changed the face of British SF for ever] popularity, in the 1970s, he began to review [1967 and resigned in 1980] science fiction for the Sunday Times and continued to do so until his death of alcohol-related illnesses in 1982. [he died of a haematemisis after an operation that morning and it is incorrect to say he died of alcohol-related illnesses]
[edit]
Work and Criticism
An atheist [ Cooper’s use of the word atheist is subjective, he particularly disliked the effects of organised religion ] and individualist, Cooper's science fiction often depicts unconventional heroes facing unfamiliar and remote environments.[In fact he used Science Fiction to illustrate the wrongs in society and he had a messianic zeal in standing up for the underdog] The colonisation of extra-terrestrial planets is a common theme and is the basis of the Expendables series, published under the name Richard Avery. The Expendables is notable both for the diversity of its cast of characters and for the frank nature of their conversations and attitudes on racial and sexual topics. [Why are you concentaring on the Expendables when he wrote over 30 novels and he only considered the Expendables as a necessary means of earning money while he researched his first major non SF novel. Indeed, with the Expendables Cooper reverted to the scripts he had written for the radio some thirty years before.] Cooper's depiction of women often proved controversial. [Why do you and Stokes concentrate on this – it has not proved to be controversial – no reviews of the TWO books that concentrated on the excesses of women’s lib – he hated anything excessive in the political field – were detrimental, it was only the journalists in the UK who stirred up a storm] Several of his books depicted future worlds dominated by women, often to the detriment of all [two, perhaps three, which is not several and you give the wrong impression]. Cooper has been quoted as disparaging women's mental capacity: "let them have totally equal competition ... they'll see that they can't make it." [We have told Stokes and we are telling you that Cooper was quoting a psychiatrist and he thought this statement to be ridiculous – if you had put because … after the ‘can’t make it…’ you would have realised he said it was because there would always be opposition when you have an inadequate political system and equal pay is still a laugh a minute – you cannot have been reading his books correctly or you would have realised that all his books contaiined a parable and all of them contained a moral] (Note 1) [The Stokes site to which you point a finger has been asked to verify its conclusions and correct its mistakes which it has chosen not to do – so you are not being fair to serious students of Cooper]
[edit]
Publications
[edit]
Novels
· 1958 The Uncertain Midnight (aka Deadly Image), ISBN 0706607716
· 1959 Seed of Light, ISBN 0340219904
· 1960 Wish Goes to Slumber Land
· 1964 Transit, ISBN 0571057241
· 1966 All Fools' Day, ISBN 0340001828
· 1968 Five to Twelve, ISBN 0340109041
· 1968 A Far Sunset, ISBN 0340043644
· 1969 Seahorse in the Sky, ISBN 0340129751
· 1969 The Last Continent, ISBN 0340150912
· 1970 Son of Kronk, ISBN 0340125772
· 1971 The Overman Culture, ISBN 0425031551
· 1971 Kronk, ISBN 0340162171
· 1972 Who Needs Men?, (aka Gender Genocide), ISBN 0340186143
· 1973 The Cloud Walker, ISBN 0340194782
· 1973 The Tenth Planet, ISBN 0340205121
· 1974 Prisoner of Fire, ISBN 0340170166
· 1974 The Slaves of Heaven, ISBN 0340223375
· 1978 Merry Christmas, Ms Minerva!, ISBN 0709170017
[Foreign editions such as Gender Genocide are not listed as ‘also known as’ as they are considered as separate books, and what about all the other editions that are not mentioned and without which this cannot be considered a serious bibliography, together with incorrect dates and ISBN numbers that were not applied at the time eg the first edition of A Far Sunset has a date of 1967 without an ISBN number, it was only subsequent editions published at a later date that were given a number]
[edit]
As Martin Lester [how have you verified pseudonyms?]
· 1954, Black Phoenix,
[edit]
As George Kinley
· 1954 Ferry Rocket
[edit]
As Broderick Quain
· 1954 They Shall Not Die
[edit]
As Richard Avery
The Expendables Series:
· 1975 The Deathworms of Kratos, ISBN 0340194723
· 1975 The Rings of Tantalus, ISBN 0340198893
· 1975 The War Games of Zelos, ISBN 0340198753
· 1976 The Venom of Argus, ISBN 0340199180
[edit]
Short Stories (collections)
· 1956 Voices in the Dark
· 1958 Tomorrow's Gift
· 1963 Tomorrow Came
· 1964 The Square Root of Tomorrow, ISBN 0709111223
· 1968 The News from Elsewhere, ISBN B0000CO5KF
· 1971 Unborn Tomorrow, ISBN 0709119178
· 1971 Double Phoenix (with Roger Lancelyn Green), ISBN 0345024206
· 1972 Jupiter Laughs and Other Stories, ISBN 0340264624
· 1980 World of Difference, ISBN 070918686X
[edit]
Screenplays [He did not write these screenplays – see note below]
· 1957 Invisible Boy
· 1969 The Uncertain Midnight (French)
[edit]
Notes
[A specific bibliography, such as this should indicate to the reader the publications listed are those written by the author, so you cannot put in screenplays he did not write and take out the ‘see Edmund Cooper’s Biography’ as it is as inaccurate as yours is at this time and it would be courteous to make mention of the Edmund Cooper Literary Trust as we hold the full archive and all copyrights. If, after your bad tempered outburst you would like to contact us please do so on dfpcantab@yahoo.co.uk since we are arranging his autobiography, bibliogaraphy (standing at over 800 pages at this time – will Wikipedia be able to cope? – a biography and an anthology of poetry – the archives are being catalogued - so if you have any questions please ask us and it will be so much easier than us having to waste time over the Wikipedia entry] Note 1: See Edmund Cooper's Biography—Preceding unsigned comment added by Dee page (talkcontribs) 2006-07-07t17:38:13z

Edits, Changes, etc.[edit]

Look, if there are inaccuracies, FIX THEM. Just correct the inaccurate information, and explain why in the edit note. Stop banging on about the permissions of the Trustees: you do not have a monopoly on factual information. Simply remove the inaccurate information and replace it with accurate information. Issues which are more subjective are open to discussion. But you are going about this very much in the wrong way. Ben-w 01:38, 8 July 2006 (UTC)


17 July 2006

Dear Ben Walsh,

The Trustees of the Edmund Cooper Literary Trust do have the imprimatur (see the Concise Oxford Dictionary) of the information on Edmund Cooper, because he so designated it; and by doing so we have a duty of care and we continue to hold that imprimatur whether it is on Wikipedia or not. The Trust has not said that it has a monopoly on facts relating to Edmund Cooper, but it does have a legal right to correct anything that may be wrong or detrimental to his oeuvre and the circumstances under which this oeuvre was created.

You may not like us ‘banging on about it’ (your words not ours), but it happens to be correct. However, common sense would dictate that if you are going to fill a space on the world wide web – Wikipedia or other – you get your facts right. We have given you the opportunity to change the incorrect information contained in the entry by giving you the facts obtained from original manuscripts, correspondence, note books etc, which are not subject to speculation. They are fact. The information on the Wikipedia entry is an obvious lift from the Stoke’s site, which claims to be an ongoing biography, which would surely fall under the umbrella of ‘original research’, which would appear to mean that the entry is unacceptable under the stated terms of Wikipedia.

While we congratulate you on your taste in choosing Cooper as a subject for a biographical entry, sadly, apart from the dates of birth and death, the majority is factually wrong. Since you obviously wish to be seen as an authority on Cooper then it is much more important for you to get the facts right rather than rely on the sources you have used so far. Your critique on Cooper’s books has left the Trustees and other fans, who have contacted us, aghast. They and we cannot understand why, out of over twenty books you have chosen the feminist issues as an example of the whole. This concentration, rather than illustrating Cooper’s attitude to women actually disparages him and his work. By concentrating on this minor issue and ignoring the many other issues Cooper addressed, you are making it impossible for publishers to look seriously at the oeuvre as a whole as a potential for re-publishing.

Journalists like Goddard have done little to promote the whole of Cooper’s work in that they also concentrated on the feminist issue – see Stoke’s website – which has little relevance in today’s publishing world and, indeed, one major publisher has said that in a post feminist world no publisher would deem it worthwhile re-printing Cooper’s work while the Stoke’s website and now you keep ‘banging on’ about Cooper’s so-called anti feminist stance, when there is so much else in his novels for discussion if you look. The consequences of this are a serious issue and could lead to litigation as has happened with other writers’ estates.

May we ask that if you want to see Cooper re-printed in the UK you bear in mind and use the corrections we sent to the Wikipedia discussion page as they have been verified and that your critique, such as it is, will be seen worldwide and, to date, to the detriment of Edmund Cooper.

Dee Page For the Trustees

I have sent this to your e-mail address out of courtesy, but this a reply to your last entry on the Wikipedia discussion page, but now it is on Wikipedia as you did not bother to reply.—Preceding unsigned comment added by Dee page (talkcontribs) 2006-07-19t06:45:16z

Dear Mr Walsh

Thank you for your reply to our letter.

Unfortunately you and others appear to feel capable of making the type of entries you have without verification, which Wikipedia say they demand. Where and how did you verify the facts in the Cooper entry? We would be interested to know so please answer.

We have kindly provided you with facts to correct some of the mistakes you have made. On advice it is not up to us to alter the entry – you felt you could do it, so it is up to you to make the corrections. The Trustees would not choose the medium of Wikipedia to promote the life and work of Edmund Cooper because, by its very nature, it is open to abuse by anybody who may think they know better, and the truth may get obscured by personal agendas and false memories; which appears to be the case at the moment. Wherever your information has come from it is obvious to those who deal with literary matters they know little about the publishing history and less about the literary archive of Edmund Cooper.

You should be aware that there are legal rights the Trustees, as literary executors, must adhere to, therefore your comments about them and the bad language used in your first e-mail to us is unacceptable.

Sincerely

Dee Page For the Trustees Edmund Cooper Literary Trust

An impartial view[edit]

I confess to being somewhat dismayed at the apparent rift between the Trustees of Edmund Cooper and the author(s) of the Cooper entry on Wikipedia. Both sides are obviously interested in promoting Edmund Cooper and I would have thought a little more tolerance and understanding would have helped on all sides.

FWIW, I was a long-time fan of Edmund Cooper (I say "was" as I haven't read one of his books for many years) and have a collection of all of his books that I am aware of (including the psudonymous ones) as well as many of the stories (including many published outside the SF genre). I am also the author/publisher of 56 bibliographies of assorted SF authors and while I do not claim to be an "expert", I think I do have some credentials in this area.

Reading through the current entry for Edmund Cooper and the comments made by the Trust, my view is that many of the comments/corrections/additions proposed by the Trust are perfectly reasonable, although I deplore the attitude taken for criticising the original author for not knowing about the stories published during the war given that the Trust has never made any attempt to release this information to the general public. Quite why the Trust has allowed Cooper to slide into oblivion since his death is a puzzle to me, but is also outside the scope of this discussion.

My personal view is that most of the Trust's proposed corrections be included in the Wikipedia article with the following caveats/exceptions:

>> delete and detective novels – hardly relevant as he only wrote one

As EC did write a detective novel then it is unreasonable to delete the reference or to claim it is "hardly relevant". However, a rewording to stress that he primarily wrote science fiction but also wrote widely outside the field, including one detective novel, would seem a reasonable compromise.

>> wrong – he did not join the Merchant Navy at the age of 15

I have no information on this to hand, but if the Trust would care to clarify when he DID join the Merchant Navy then I'm sure the fact could be corrected.

>> Short stories, poetry and novels had been published both in the UK and USA during his >> Merchant Navy Service – 1944-46 – infact he had started writingf at the age of 14 and >> his first story was published when he was 16 – his first poem was published a year earlier

Again, this is information that the Trust has but, for some unknown reason, chooses not to share with the wider community. I'm sure we would all love to know more about these stories and poems.

>> a new UK edition was published the next year with a variant text and cannot be considered >> as anything other than a new book

This betrays a basic lack of understanding of bibliographical principles. IIRC, the variant text in DEADLY IMAGE/UNCERTAIN MIDNIGHT is relatively minor and would NOT generally be regarded as a "new book".

>> It is important to note that Seed of Light was written in 1955, but not published until 1959

This is certainly of interest, and would be addressed in any many bio/bibliographical study of his work, but is not generally relevant in a simply bibliography whose purpose is to list the first publication dates only.

>> [Pseudonyms] This is not true and if you intend to make personal statements of this >> nature you must verify them or remove them – at no time did Cooper say that he was not >> proud of any of his work and his autobiography states quite the opposite

That's an interesting comment. I am not aware of any published biography of Cooper so I assume the Trust is again quoting privileged information that they choose not to share with the general public. The general perception is that the pseudonyms used on the books sold to Curtis Warren (by Cooper, John Brunner, Ted Tubb and many others) were precisely to disguise the author's name as these were generally just "hack work" to pay the bills. If this was not the case with Cooper then he would be an exception and it is unreasonable to expect somebody not privy to the bibliography to know it.

>> {Cooper] was living off his literary earings and writing full time by the age of 25 >> i.e. 1951 – there was a hiatus in his literary career when he left the woman he >> considered his inspiration and lived with Valerie Makin, who was to become his second wife]

Again, this is interesting information that has not been released in the public domain (AFAIK). Cooper was well known as a book reviewer for the Sunday Times so he was certainly employed for some of the period after 1951. As such, while the correction has some merit, it does need qualification.

>> The following year The Uncertain Midnight was adapted for Swiss television, in French

If I understand the comment from the Trust correctly, this is correct but unauthorised (and hence plagiarised). A correction to indicate this fact would seem reasonable.

>> Cooper was regarded as the catalyst who changed the face of British SF for ever

While I admire the Trust's loyalty to their cause, this is just plain ludicrous and I would be interested in seeing citations from any credible SF historian to this effect. Cooper was a very competent author, who wrote some excellent books, but his impact on the "fact of British SF" was minimal compared to, say, Wells, Wyndham, Ballard, Aldiss or Brunner.

>> he died of a haematemisis after an operation that morning and it is incorrect to say he >> died of alcohol-related illnesses

This sounds a reasonable correction.

>> Cooper’s use of the word atheist is subjective, he particularly disliked the effects >> of organised religion

I'm unclear as to the distinction being made here - was Cooper an atheist or not?

>> In fact he used Science Fiction to illustrate the wrongs in society and he had a >> messianic zeal in standing up for the underdog

Looking at the whole published oeuvre of his work, one would have to say that the original description of his themes is a more accurate one than one of "standing up for the underdog" - I'm sure he has a messianic zeal for the latter, but he was constrained by the demands of the marketplace.

>> Why are you concentaring on the Expendables when he wrote over 30 novels and he only >> considered the Expendables as a necessary means of earning money while he researched >> his first major non SF novel.

I would tend to agree - The Expendables are very minor work, which is no doubt why they were original published under a pseudonym (although no attempt was made at the time to hide who was behind the pseudonym).

>> Why do you and Stokes concentrate on this – it has not proved to be controversial – >> no reviews of the TWO books that concentrated on the excesses of women’s lib – he hated >> anything excessive in the political field – were detrimental, it was only the journalists >> in the UK who stirred up a storm

Whether or not the controversy was justified is another question, but there is no doubt that he did stir up controversy at the time - it might have been inadvertent and unjustified, but it certainly happened.

>> Several of his books depicted future worlds dominated by women, often to the detriment >> of all [two, perhaps three, which is not several and you give the wrong impression].

A reasonable comment.

>> We have told Stokes and we are telling you that Cooper was quoting a psychiatrist and >> he thought this statement to be ridiculous

Certainly the original statement, i.e. that Cooper has been quoted as saying this, is, I believe, correct - the issue seems to be whether he was quoted correctly or not. As such, obviously, the onus is simply on either "side" to provide a public citation that supports their case rather than just stating an opinion.

>> Foreign editions such as Gender Genocide are not listed as ‘also known as’ as they >> are considered as separate books

This is nonsense in any bibliography (serious or otherwise) - two books with identical (or virtually identical) texts and different titles are always regarded as being the same book.

>> and what about all the other editions that are not mentioned and without which >> this cannot be considered a serious bibliography

This is a Wikipedia entry and NOT a serious bibliography.

>> together with incorrect dates and ISBN numbers that were not applied at the time >> eg the first edition of A Far Sunset has a date of 1967 without an ISBN number, >> it was only subsequent editions published at a later date that were given a number

The comment on ISBNs is a bit of a red herring - I don't see their value myself, but if it helps someone find and buy an Edmund Cooper book then all well and good. Certainly any errors in first publication dates should be corrected.

>> how have you verified pseudonyms?

The four pseudonyms listed have been well known in the SF community for the last ten years or so. Obviously it is always difficult to verify pseudonyms, particularly when the author is deceased, but these seem pretty solid. If the Trust feels the list is inaccurate or incomplete then I'm sure we would all love to see corrections and additions.

>> A specific bibliography, such as this should indicate to the reader the publications >> listed are those written by the author, so you cannot put in screenplays he did not write

Fair comment

>> and take out the ‘see Edmund Cooper’s Biography’ as it is as inaccurate as yours is at >> this time

I see no reason to remove this link - all websites (and indeed all documents) are inaccurate to a degree and, at the moment, it seems to be the best website around to discuss Cooper's life (there isn't much competition!).

>> and it would be courteous to make mention of the Edmund Cooper Literary Trust as we >> hold the full archive and all copyrights

Wikipedia isn't really aimed at people trying to purchase the rights to reprint stories or anything similar, so listing the copyright holder or agent or similar is rarely relevant. Obviously if the Trust was prepared to produce its own website with a correct statement of the "facts" then a link to that would be justified.

>> If, after your bad tempered outburst

From what I have seen of the discussions, the reaction to the Trust's deletion of the page was perfectly justified - calling it "bad tempered" is unhelpful.

>> bibliogaraphy (standing at over 800 pages at this time – will Wikipedia be able to cope?

Wikipedia is a website with tens (maybe hundreds) of thousands of entries, so of course it could cope with an 800-page bibliography (as long as it was well structured). Is the Trust prepared to make this bibliography available on the web (I will gladly host it on my own website if Wikipedia is inappropriate) or is this just an empty gesture?

>> if you have any questions please ask us and it will be so much easier than us >> having to waste time over the Wikipedia entry

Except that the Wikipedia entry is public and allows everyone with an interest to see the information. Private e-mails might be "easier" for the Trust but also smack of a desire to control/limit the free flow of information.

I am sure I speak for all Cooper fans in saying we are delighted to hear that the Trust is finally doing something to promote Edmund Cooper (though a biography and a collection of poetry is much less interesting, to me at least, than reissues of his main books and/or collections of his uncollected fiction). However, I am concerned that, after many years of total neglect, it appears to be more interested in suppressing others who wish to promote Cooper than in making the effort to promote the author themselves.

The above was contributed by Phil Stephensen-Payne, who tells me that his failure to sign was accidental. --DeafMan 14:43, 23 July 2006 (UTC)

STOP with the ten-page rambling essays[edit]

The Trustees or anyone else who wants to can edit the page to make it more accurate, and they have been encouraged to do so.They have chosen, instead, to engage in lengthy boring lectures about their Sacred Rights As Trustees. If there are inaccuracies, EDIT THE GODDAM ARTICLE AND FIX THEM. Ben-w 16:11, 21 July 2006 (UTC)

the uncertain midnight dates[edit]

Edmund and Valerie actually met in January 1957. Shortly afterwards, he began writing The Uncertain Midnight, various scenes in which were inspired by places the couple went together. I have letters from my father to my mother that mention progress on The Uncertain Midnight and other stories, etc. Edmund finished writing The Uncertain Midnight in mid-December 1957. Ian Hamilton, who worked for Hutchinson, wrote in a letter to Edmund that they were 'most interested in your exceedingly intelligent and alarming novel'. Edmund then began writing A Touch Of The Sun, but his publishers persuaded him to expand his novella The Seed. This took most of 1958 -- he finished it in September that year. At this time, amongst other short stories, including romantic ones, he was working on the third version of The Miller's Daughter. After finishing what had recently become known as Seed Of Light, Edmund began writing The Iron Gates, the bulk of which was written by January the following year, and the rest by June when Seed Of Light was published. He still kept having problems with A Touch Of The Sun -- it was eventually published as All Fools' Day. In February 1957, Edmund also wrote The First Martian, inspired by his first meeting with Valerie (Edmund playing the Martian, I hasten to add!). Also at this time he wrote another SF story called A Rope Of Darkness, but this one never appeared in any of the later collections of his story. [All the information in these 3 paragraphs is from letters by my Dad.] Dawn, if you are reading this, what exactly are the errors you say are in my article about Edmund, Almost Tomorrow, in Book and Magazine Collector? In any case, even if there are one or two small mistakes, the point of the article is that there is nothing else about Edmund available, so for the time being Almost Tomorrow is the best anyone is going to get about my Dad. When are you going to do something about him? Oh, but of course: you Edmund Cooper 'Trust' people, you don't actually like Edmund, do you? And you don't WANT anything of his to get republished, or indeed anything that's just about him, and you spread fictions about us his family and even Edmund himself! What kind of trust are you? What is the actual reason that you even bother to pick on points in Wikipedia and others? You have no interest in Edmund, or his work, so why, Dawn, do you spend so much of your time putting down stuff that other people say about Edmund, when, actually, you yourself are not promoting him or his books? I stand by every word I've written about my Dad -- at least I'm doing something, for him, and for his fans, and indeed for family honour.

Dear Mr Cooper

I am afraid you are wrong. The contracts for the books mentioned, which were signed long before your father met your mother, indicate quite clearly that these were rewrites and this is confirmed in letters written by Edmund Cooper to agents and publishers where he states that the rewrites would be about ten thousand words. In the three-book contract, which included two of the books under discussion, he decided that the novel ‘The Iron Gates’ would be the third, but the publishers did not want it. He was left in somewhat of a quandary because he could not write anything else in the time given under the contract.

You quote from a letter from Hutchinsons, however, these were Edmund’s own words in a letter he wrote in 1952 to another publisher when he submitted ‘The Seed’ (now called ‘The Seed of Light’). The first publisher to read this rejected it on the grounds that” it was far too technical for the average SF reader who was, on the whole, moronic”.

Now we come to your article; although we will not fully dissect it here, briefly instead of the one or two errors you feel you may have made there were over fifty and, furthermore, you are doing exactly what your father said your family would do – rewriting history. Since you do not have access to the majority of the archive it is small wonder that your article and those contributions from the rest of your family as demonstrated on the two websites with which you are associated contain so many errors.

Edmund Cooper is ‘out there’ and has always been ‘out there’, but do you think it likely that any publisher would wish to continue to print his works when his own son calls his works ‘disappointing’, ‘crud’, and ‘a bit trashy and not at all satisfying’ …?

Two further points: contrary to your statement a bibliography of Cooper’s works was prepared for the valuation of the estate for probate purposes in 1982 and has been regularly updated ever since, and, secondly, despite your claims, you revealed nothing new in your article that was not already public knowledge in the early seventies.

In view of your further statements we see no purpose in continuing this discussion on Wikipedia but must remind you and others that you have no intellectual or moral rights nor copyright over whatever you have in your possession and was written or produced by Edmund Cooper.

Dee Page for the Trustees – Edmund Cooper Literary Trust

ps Contrary to the assertion by John Farley, the Official Cooper Website still exists at: ecoopersf.org.uk and contact can be made via dfpcantab@yahoo.co.uk


Bloody hell[edit]

Christ, Dee, did you have http://ecoopersf.org.uk designed by a meth-addicted hamster?

It'd be really great if you could express whatever it is you want to say about Edmund Cooper in a paragraph of about this length without getting all upset and making vague threats about the moral rights of the trustees. Ooooooh, the TRUSTEES! That's you, right? Anyone else? No? Ben-w 11:11, 27 October 2006 (UTC)


Assertions, assertions![edit]

I have never made any 'assertion' that the Trust web site was no longer there. I have only stated that I have removed the link from my site because:

1) It has nothing of note on it
2) It hasn't changed since it was uploaded in 2003
3) The service you chose to use is overloaded with spyware
4) The service contains a surfeit of pop-up adverts, some of which have been pornographic.

I can not allow a link on my site which promotes spyware and pornography, it is as simple as that! I certainly will not allow myself to be seen to endorse a such a site. Firstly, because the spyware is a threat to viewers PCs and secondly because the quality of the advertising is not suitable for public access and certainly does nothing to contribute to the reputation of Edmund Cooper.

When you have uploaded a site with worthwhile material and have chosen a service that won't impose its tastes in advertising on your material, I will link to an 'official' site again, but not until then.

Jon (please note the spelling... you have been told enough times!) Farley


I was a major fan of Edmund Cooper since the mid 1970's. For a long time I thought that if there were to be a Big 4 in SF (Clarke, Heinlein, Assimov) then Cooper could possibly have been this 4th. Surely you can get 1500-2500 words you agree on to post on these pages in rememberance of a top writer. A book such as Transit deserves special mention. EC will be remembered as a SF author, not a poet, so no, do not spend long nights editing 800 pages of poetry which will be ignored for geological ages. Note also that Richard Avery (one of EC's pseudonyms) was portrayed as a character in one of his books (Transit If I recall rightly).122.148.82.155 19:06, Brett Cupitt 1 December 2007 (UTC)


Colonisation of Planets[edit]

To say "planet colonisation" is only used in Transit & Seahorse is wrong:

Seahorse in the Sky, concerns kidnapped humans from three separate planets, colonising a new world.

The Expendables series, concerns proving planets fit for colonisation.

Seed of Light is about a generation starship which sets out to colonise another world and eventually ends up in Earth pre-history, colonising a planet which is essentially alien to the crew who are hundreds of generations removed.

Far Sunset is based on the idea that the planet voyaged to, is a planet originally colonised by Mars, as was Earth (an idea also visited in his short story Welcome Home)

Tenth Planet concerns a man waking after 5000 years on the 10th planet of this solar system which has been colonised by Earth after an eco-disaster (on Earth, and a failed 1st colony on Mars).

Also:

Last continent is about Earth being visited by a descendant society produced through the colonisation of Mars after a race-war.

In Transit, the prize for winning against the aliens is the planet to colonise.

In The Overman Culture, the machines that wiped out man, rebuild the human species in order to re-colonise Earth.

That is eleven novels, the metier of nine of which and the denouement of two of which, in each case derive directly from the idea of planet colonisation, ergo a common theme in over half of his novels.


Please don't confuse the concept of a 'Plot-Theme' with that of a 'Plot-line' (The actual action).

Only one EC book concerns planet colonisation as a plot-line and that is Seed of Light.

Not even the expendables uses colonisation as a plot-line, the plot-line for that sequence is that of planetary proving.



You explicitly say that "colonisation" is a common theme, that *then* gets used in The Expendables.. now you INCLUDE the Expendables as examples of colonisation. I will admit colonisation was used as a theme *in* The Expendables, since that was exactly what the series was about (preparation for colonisation), but it was not "common" in his work. Among your examples are Seed of Light (humanity returns to Earth), Far Sunset (human lands on planet populated by humans), Last Continent (human descendants of an exiled community return to Earth), The Ovetrman Culture (repopulating NOT recolonising Earth). You might as well include All Fools' Day (the insane inherit an Earth depopulated by the plague), or Five to Twelve (the male sex is reintroduced) or The Tenth Planet (the disparate societies come to a rapprochement to reinvigorate Earth). You are spindling the word "colonisation" to mean what it does not mean, and the word "theme" to the same extent - the majority of his works can indeed be seen as humanity re-inheriting Earth after an apocalyptic event, but "to colonise" means to establish a colony in another land, or "to take up residence" - humanity cannot "colonise" a place it already inhabits. To suggest a multiply-defined "colonisation" is "common" should be matched with similar "common themes": love, hate, despair, loss, disappointment, genocide, madness, poets, countryside, that is, the accoutrements of being human, and alive. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 90.192.195.125 (talk) 21:54, 16 November 2010 (UTC)


No, you are still confusing theme with action. The theme defines the action but is not necessarily a part of that action. In the expendables, the planets have to be 'proved' in order for them to be 'colonised'. The plot-line is the proving, but the theme is colonisation. In Seed of Light, the Plot-line is the drive to abandon a destroyed planet and colonise a new one, in the end the starship returns to Earth pre-history, but it is never the less planetary colonisation which is the plot-line and the summation. In A Far Sunset, the plot-line as we see it could not have happened if the planet (and Earth) had not originally been colonised by Mars, and the action that takes place is a drive towards the discovery of that past colonisation (the original starship being the manifestation of god on that planet). Similarly, Lost Continent is a conflict of societies plot-line but the theme of colonisation exists as basis for the development of one of those societies.

Since in Overman, the earth is barren of the human species and are recreated by the machines, it is essentially a colonisation, not a re-population (but this is denouement rather than metier). On the other hand, since the species exists (albeit in a depleted state) in All Fool's Day and Five to Twelve, you are correct in saying this is a re-population theme.

'Planet Colonisation' is a theme, while love, hate, despair, loss, disappointment, genocide, madness, poets and the countryside are not themes, they are unqualified elements. If you qualify the elements, they would become themes... 'Inter-Species Love' 'Inter-species Hate' 'Isolation Despair' (common in Murry Leinster stories) etc., etc.



The concept of colonisation is the same between all of the novels, as I have stated it, what appears to be at fault here is your conception of the literary definition of 'Plot-Theme' and 'Plot-Line'. You seem to think that a theme can only be a 'theme' if it constitutes part of the main plot and fail to understand that a theme can exist in the back plot solely as a method of driving the plot itself.

I would suggest that you purchase a copy of 'Stein on Writing' or 'Teach Yourself - Writing Science Fiction' these books will explain to you how themes drive a plot without being part of the action.

Please leave the entry as it is, since it is correct in terms of literary criticism.


The entry is now wrong, as the whole article was wrong for some years. I thought I had managed to drag it back to cold, clear fact a few months ago. You are incorrect, but that is nothing new. As you say, what would I know about literary definitions? I only knew and corresponded with Edmund Cooper himself for ten years and learned why he wrote what he did in the way that he did, about masks, and ultimate tests, and satire, and fragile humanity stalled between muck and the stars, forever collapsing and reincarnating like an amnesiac god. You mistake trope for theme. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 90.192.195.157 (talk) 23:48, 16 November 2010 (UTC)



No, what would I know? I have only been publishing for 40 years.

I know exactly what Trope is and what Theme is, on the other hand, you appear not to be able to understand the difference, so I will enlighten you:

Trope is an element that is used for an unusual or interesting effect without forming a part of the plot. In other words it is an element that does not drive the plot but merely provides an amusing digression.

For example, in A Far Sunset, Edmund Discusses using Cryogenic Freezing as a form of psychological rehabilitation. It has no bearing on the plot-line and is not relevant to the action. It is a Trope, not a Theme. Interestingly, Hollywood took that Trope and turned it into a core theme in the film Demolition Man. Now read the book, watch the film and examine the difference between the uses of the same idea. You will then understand the difference between Trope and Theme.

I have listed all the novels in which colonisation is a plot-driving 'Theme', and it numbers over half of his twenty novels. It is therefore a common theme and correct.

I am sure you enjoyed your ten years of correspondence with Edmund and I am glad it gave you an insight into his poetics and his view on humanity, but please don't confuse your enlightenment with an ability for Literary Criticism until you have mastered the basics. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 86.174.164.131 (talk) 07:24, 17 November 2010 (UTC)


I have changed it to something less contentious, now stop bickering you two and get on with improving the article. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Ordric (talkcontribs) 19:20, 17 November 2010 (UTC)

Cause of Death?[edit]

One thing that stands out as missing from this article is any hint as to why he died at the relatively early age of 56. If anyone could add that information, many readers would be grateful. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 204.83.77.80 (talk) 23:47, 5 September 2013 (UTC)

Where's his website then?[edit]

I find it strange that there is no official website again for Edmund Cooper, now that some of his e-books have been released, surely it would be favourable to promote Edmund's work further if there was an active website of his? DJ — Preceding unsigned comment added by 193.61.14.20 (talk) 17:35, 22 November 2013 (UTC)

Edmund Cooper[edit]

I am quite frankly amazed at the pettiness of this article on Edmund Cooper. I wonder whether this is because the family members who write disparagingly here about the Trustees role in promoting ,or lack of it ,the; information regarding this writer and who appear to be more concerned about promoting their version of the events and dates of Cooper's literary output , mainly it seems through letters written by both Cooper and their mother during an adulterous relationship. As both an author and researcher , I know that information in such letters is often deliberately skewered to give the appearance of one or both being the reason certain books,characters are being written in the way they are. Here the trustees have given information which contradicts the letters through contractual and business letters but these are and I have noted, continue and consistently to be ignored.I wonder why? And of course there is the usual guess work which shines through all the articles and summaries I have read by Cooper's family and friends;and I can tell you that Dee Page is not a woman ,so the son of Cooper who wishes his name to remain anonymous, remarks about this employee is not only hurtful but unjust, as are his comments on Cooper's reactions to how the Trustees conduct themselves. Perhaps if he was more aware about his father's estate he would have ascertained that in the words of Cooper's executors, "Cooper was hopelessly bankrupt" at the time of his death which in itself poses problems of how to deal with the estate and bequests etc.

As to a web site I have been told that this is well advanced but as yet has to have new data added from Cooper's letters which have come to light.

It has been suggested that there should be more information on the death of Cooper at such an early age. I was with Cooper on this day as was one other who knew him much better than I having been his loving and literary companion for over 30 years . If she feels that such a request invades Cooper's privacy then I see no reason to make any additions to this request. His companion feels that since the Trustees have put the truth out there as far as they are able under the strictures and rules given to them by Cooper ;and subsequently all that has happened is a total disregard for the truth ,then information that she could provide should remain with her. Furthermore if she did provide such information it would open a much wider door to a relationship that provided Cooper with much needed intellectual and loving companionship and would demonstrate the contribution that she made to his works thus causing even more fluttering in Cooper's domestic dovecote and with all that that entails. signedEmpirejohn (talk) 16:42, 2 June 2014 (UTC) EmpireJon2.6.2014

1975 interview with Cooper[edit]

This was printed in 1975, a copy's just been put up on the web: [1] - David Gerard (talk) 20:04, 17 July 2016 (UTC)

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