This is the second of two posts by others greatly influenced by George R. Stewart, and Earth Abides. The author of today’s post is Gary Wilson,who emailed kind words about the GRS quest/biography, and his story. Here’s Gary’s memoir of booksellers, the Stewarts, and the Hammer of Ish
Gary A. Wilson is a story writer who encountered George R. Stewart’s “Earth Abides” in 1969 and became a huge fan and collector of his works. Through a chance meeting of a certain used book seller, Mr. Wilson was offered the chance to meet Mr. Stewart and much later wrote the story of what happened. Things did not go as planned but George and Ted saved the day.
An excerpt:I had selected two volumes from the shelf when a much older and shorter version of the used book clerk found me. He was even more iconic a book clerk than the younger guy – bent and bearded. This guy looked even more “used” than many of his books as he asked if he could be of assistance. “Yes, I’m interested in works by George R. Stewart. I’ll be buying these two, but had hoped to see rarer works.”“Ah,” he responded. “You are a student of Mr. Stewart then?”“Not really,” I answered. “Just a big fan”.He leaned in to whisper, “Then I should show you what I have in my office.” …
You can read the full ten-minute story here.
Lovely. Thank you … where does this beautiful quote come from: “Everyone in their lifetime should have a quest; one thing of greatness, an achievement to enhance the pageant of life.”
Howdy, Edie. We’ve never met, but Butch and I know each other. And you, honored lady, have certainly taken on a quest.
or two with great success, and inspired others.
The quote is actually from Steve’s Journal – near the beginning. Like you, he took a major leap of faith. Thanks to that, and his research, there are hours of important audio tapes in the Bancroft Library GRS Papers. And, of course, the painting that heads this weblog is his fine work.
It’s a great quote. If I’d caught it the first time I read Steve’s Journal, it would have been the leading epigraph in my GRS book. The book is titled “a literary biography,” but that’s the publisher’s title. Mine was Seeking GeoS, GeoS being the powerful something that so enamors Stewart’s many fans. That is, the book was about a quest; and it just happened to include a literary biography.
Sorry, by the way, that I never got around to reviewing your book. UPS is often hard to deal with; our building is locked – national historic landmark – and so they sent it back to the publisher.