We’re still thinking of how we’re going to outdo the “Clay Tablet” issue. The effects reverberate still. A few months ago, we donated the complete works of Space Squid, including the clay tablets and the resin templates, to the Science Fiction and Fantasy Collection at the Cushing Memorial Library and Archives at Texas A&M University. As if we had some sort of literary or historic relevance. Our stuff is now sitting a few aisles from gems like the university’s Africana Collection (including the Alex Haley Archive) and one of the world’s finest collections of John Donne’s poetry.
The curator of the collection, Ms. Cait Coker, has just finished processing the donation, including making an official catalog page for the Space Squid Collection. I like the abstract:
Self-described as “the magazine Margaret Atwood warned you about,” referencing Atwood’s famous dismissal of science fiction as “rockets, chemicals and talking squids in outer space,” Space Squid is a science fiction/humor ‘zine published in Austin, Texas.
But not only did we cause a lot of work for Ms. Coker (as some of you might have noticed, we frequently mis-attribute issue numbers, which makes an archivist’s life extra hard), but we also compelled the preservation department to create a protective box for the absurdly shatterable tablet. As Ms. Coker blogs, the clay tablet now has a protective treatment similar to an actual millenia-old artifact.
On the left are the resin templates:
And here are both boxes, with everything that Space Squid ever did, including master copies of several issues and that perfume insert where I rubbed squid guts on a piece of cardboard.