Philip K. Dick

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The Selected Letters of Philip K. Dick--1974
(published in 1981)

The Selected Letters of Philip K. Dick--1975-1976
(published in 1992)
The Selected Letters of Philip K. Dick--1977-1979
(published in 1992)
The Selected Letters of Philip K. Dick--1972-1973
(published in 1993)
The Selected Letters of Philip K. Dick--1938-1971
(published in 1996)

"The Above and Melting" (1966)
"An Old Snare" (1966)
"Why I Am Hurt" (1966)
"My Life in Stillness: White as Day" (1983)
"On a Cat Which Fell Three Stories and Survived" (1987)
"Hey, Dumb Little Girls"(1988)

"Ubik: the Screenplay"
Unfilmed screenplay written by PKD in 1974. Published in 1985.

The Dark-Haired Girl
Book of letters, essays, a poem and a story. Published in 1988.

In Pursuit of VALIS: Selections from the Exegesis
Nonfiction; edited by Lawrence Sutin. Published in 1991.

The Shifting Realities of Philip K. Dick: Selected Literary and Philosophical Writings
Nonfiction; edited by Lawrence Sutin. Published in 1995.


Introduction to Essays & Other Published Works
by Paul Williams, former literary executor, Philip K. Dick Estate

Philip K. Dick spent his life talking to people he couldn't see, his readers--usually telling them stories, often long, complicated novel-length stories. The value of the best of his essays, his non-fiction writings, is that we hear the same voice speaking to us, with the same intensity and the same commitment to sharing his unique perception of the world we live in and the people and other beings we share it with.

His 1977 poem "On a Cat Which Fell Three Stories and Survived" communicates his love for and identification with the cats he lived with. It begins:

Boldness is no virtue
If it causes the surprised organism
To fall a thousand years,
Wondering as he plunges
How he went wrong
And where the error lay."

Many lines later, the poem ends:
He was entitled to return and did so
But I ask, What of us?
We lack the stamina, and wander off.

His essay "How to Build a Universe That Doesn't Fall Apart Two Days Later" reminds us just as vividly of the man we know from reading his fiction:

"So I ask, in my writing, What is real? Because unceasingly we are bombarded with pseudorealities manufactured by very sophisticated people using very sophisticated electronic mechanisms. I do not distrust their motives; I distrust their power. They have a lot of it. And it is an astonishing power: that of creating whole universes, universes of the mind. I ought to know. I do the same thing. It is my job to create universes, as the basis of one novel after another. And I have to build them in such a way that they do not fall apart two days later. Or at least that is what my editors hope. However, I will reveal a secret to you: I like to build universes that *do* fall apart. I like to see them come unglued, and I like to see how the characters in the novels cope with this problem. I have a secret love of chaos. There should be more of it. Do not believe--and I am dead serious when I say this-- do not assume that order and stability are always good, in a society or in a universe. The old, the ossified, must always give way to new life and the birth of new things."

The lists on this page are of essays and other non-fiction (including a few plot outlines written to get assignments from editors) by Philip K. Dick, and of verse and non-fiction books by Philip K. Dick arranged chronologically by year of first publication.

"Pessimism in Science Fiction"

"Naziism and the High Castle"
"Drugs, Hallucinations, and the Quest for Reality"
"Tips for the Beginning Writer"

"Schizophrenia & the Book of Changes" "Pessimism in Science Fiction"

"Will the Atomic Bomb Ever Be Perfected, and If So, What Becomes of Robert Heinlein?"

"Anthony Boucher"
"Self Portrait"

"That Moon Plaque"

"Notes Made Late at Night by a Weary SF Writer"
"The Android and the Human"

"The Nixon Crowd"

"Three Sci-Fi Authors View the Future"
"An Open Letter to Joanna Russ"
"Who Is an SF Writer?"

"The Evolution of a Vital Love"

"Memories Found in a Bill from a Small Animal Vet"
"The Short Happy Life of a Science Fiction Writer"
"Man, Android and Machine"

"If You Find This World Bad, You Should See Some of the Others"

"The Lucky Dog Pet Store"
"Scientists Claim: We Are the Center of the Universe"

"Universe Makers...and Breakers"
"The Tagore Letter"

"How to Write Science Fiction"

"How to Build a Universe That Doesn't Fall Apart Two Days Later"
"Warning: We Are Your Police" (plot outline)

"Cosmogony and Cosmology"

"PKD's Blade Runner: 1968 Notes on How to Film Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?"

"Joe Protagoras Is Alive and Living on Earth" (plot outline)
"The Name of the Game Is Death" (plot outline)
"The Different Stages of Love"

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