Robert A. Heinlein wrote a humorous cyborg story in response to a cyborg anthology that was dedicated to him and now this rare find is finally appearing in a magazine, the May issue of Galaxy's Edge. The Heinlein story is titled; “Field Defects: Memo From a Cyborg”.
What makes this story so rare?
In 1975, Random House/Vintage published an anthology of stories about cyborgs called Human-Machines, edited by Thomas N. Scortia and George Zebrowski. The editors dedicated the book to Robert A. Heinlein, “who taught us both.” When Heinlein received a copy of the book, he wrote them both a letter, thanking them. However, that personal message to them was in a postscript. The actual text of the letter was a short fiction piece showing a truly whimsical and entertaining side of the Heinlein where he pretended to be a Cyborg – in keeping with the theme of the anthology – complaining about certain defects.
The story has only been published once before: in the Virginia Edition, a set of volumes (limited to 2,000 sets and selling for $1,500 each) containing Heinlein’s complete fiction and non-fiction. For the vast majority of readers, this will be a “new” Heinlein story.