Monday, August 07, 2006

8/7: EE Smith's Spacehounds of IPC at Distributed Proofreaders

I do a bit of volunteer work for an organization called Distributed Proofreaders, which scans into OCR and proofs out-of-copyright books for Project Gutenberg.

I've spent the last 30 days proofreading on the first level. Last night I decided to check out Level 2 to see if there was any science fiction there, and found E. E. Doc Smith's Spacehounds of ICD.

So I've read a few pages of that...and it's really amusing. (I'm a fan of the Lensman series, but it must be admitted that the dialog even in that is rather dated.) Currently the two main characters - a man and a woman - are marooned on a planet. The guy is building forges so he can make radios and various other complicated machinery, the girl does the hunting and the cooking and the making of clothes.. after 30 days she tells him she loves him - and he loves her...

"While she was speaking, the grim, strained lines
upon Stevens' face had disappeared, and as she
fell silent he straightened up and gently, tenderly, reverently
he took her lithe body into his arms.

"You're right, sweetheart--everything will check out
on zero, to nineteen decimals." He was a man transfigured.
"I've been fighting windmills and I've been
scared sick--but how was I to think that a wonder-girl
like you could ever love a mutt like me? You certainly
are the gamest little partner a man ever had You're the
world's straightest shooter, ace--you're a square brick if
there ever was one. Your sheer nerve in being willing
to go the whole route makes me love you more than
ever, if such a thing can be possible, and it certainly
puts a new face on the whole cock-eyed Universe for
me. However, I don't believe it will come to that. After
what you've just said, I sure will lick that job, regardless
of how many different factories it takes to make one
armature--I'll show that mess of scrap-iron what kind
of trees make shingles!""

On a side note, since I'm on Level 2 - the work has already gone through round 1 of proofreading - I'm rather surprised to find at least one typo per page. I've done 6 pages so far and each of 'em has had something that a previous proofreader missed. Just one each, though, so that's something.

So, anyway, if you want to read some sci fi that you've probably never seen before, sign up with Distributed Proofreaders. You have to spend 30 days with Level 1 before you can move on to Level 2...but there's some fun stuff to read.

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