This second volume of the Backstage series completes the publication of the author's outlines for his last four novels.
The outline for Ecce and Old Earth is the briefest, yet contains many of the plot points and most of the major characters of the finished novel.
As yet untitled, the outline for Cadwal III, to be called Throy, is more extensive relative to its final version than its predecessor. Most of the final plot is here, but perhaps of greatest interest is the characteristically wistful ending; many readers will regret its loss and be grateful for its preservation in this form.
Nearly 10 years will elapse between the initial outline for Ports of Call and its completion with Lurulu. Episodes not yet invented will be added, others will be discarded. Even the protagonist's name will change.
Though not as extensive as that for Night Lamp, published in Volume 1 of the series, each of these synopses led finally to one of Vance's most characteristic works. And of course they are well worth reading in their own right. They are after all by Jack Vance.
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About the Author
California native Jack Vance (1916-2013) was one of the greats of science fiction. He was the author of dozens of sci-fi books and fantasy novels, including the popular Lyonesse and Dying Earth series and the Hugo and Nebula Award-winning book The Last Castle. In 1997, he was honored as a Grand Master by the Science Fiction Writers of America. He died in Oakland, California.