The Big List of Time Travel Adventures

 Written by James Blish
 from antiquity to 2017



   The Haertel Scholium Stories
by James Blish
First story: Galaxy, Feb 1954

Blish’s story “Beep” appeared in 1954 with a casual mention of time-travel when a message is overheard from a future spaceship that’s following a worldline backwards through time. The main story follows video reporter Dana Lje who stumbles upon the newly invented Dirac radio which allows instantaneous communication and, as only she realizes, also carries a record of every transmission ever made, both past and future.

At Larry Shaw’s request, Blish expanded “Beep” into the short novel The Quincunx of Time, and both these stories share a background wherein the work of Dolph Haertel (the next Einstein) provides an ftl-drive (the Haertel Overdrive, later called the Imaginary Drive), an antigravity device (the spindizzy), and an instantaneous communicator (the Dirac Radio). I read many of these in the early ’70s, but can’t find my notes and don’t remember any other time travel beyond that one communiqué that Lje overheard. Still, I’ll list everything in The Haertel Scholium and reread them some day!
  1. Pantropy and Seedling Stars stories (1942-1956) Various publications
  2. Cities in Flight stories (1952-1962) Various publications
  3. Common Time (Jul 1953) in Shadow of Tomorrow
  4. Beep (Feb 1954) Galaxy
  5. Nor Iron Bars (Nov 1957) Infinity
  6. A Case of Conscience (Sep 1953) & novel (1958) If
  7. A Dusk of Idols (Mar 1961) Amazing
  8. Midsummer Century (Apr 1972) & novel (May 1972) F&SF
  9. The Quincunx of Time (Oct 1973) expands “Beep”

 It is instead one of the seven or eight great philosophical questions that remain unanswered, the problem of whether man has or has not free will. 




   Star Trek, the Blish Adaptations
adapted by James Blish
First time travel: Star Trek 2, Feb 1968

I bought the first four of these collections in July of 1971 in Huntsville, and the rest I snapped up as they were issued in the ’70s (plus Blish’s original novel Spock Must Die!). At that point in my life, I could recite them by heart. Here’s the list of time-travel adaptations, which does not include “The Naked Time” (in Star Trek 1) since the 71 hours of time travel was omitted in the Blish version:
  1. Tomorrow Is Yesterday (Feb 1968) in Star Trek 2
  2. The City on the Edge of Forever    (Feb 1968) in Star Trek 2
  3. Assignment: Earth (Apr 1969) in Star Trek 3
  4. All Our Yesterdays (Jul 1971) in Star Trek 4

 “Jim,” McCoy said raggedly. “You deliberately stopped me . . . Did you hear me? Do you know what you just did?”
Kirk could not reply. Spock took his arm gently. “He knows,” he said. “Soon you will know, too. And what
was . . . now is again.” 

—The City on the Edge of Forever


 


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Thanks for visiting my time-travel page, and thanks to the many sources that provided stories and more (see the Links and Credits in the menu at the top). —Michael (
main@colorado.edu)