A.r.s Week in Review - 10/1/2000
- View SourceAlt.religion.scientology
Week in Review Volume 5, Issue 25
by Rod Keller [rkeller@...]
Alt.religion.scientology Week in Review summarizes the most significant
postings from the Usenet group Alt.religion.scientology for the preceding
week for the benefit of those who can't follow the group as closely as
they'd like. Out of thousands of postings, I attempt to include news of
significant events, new affidavits, court rulings, new contributors,
whatever. I hope you find it useful. Like many readers of a.r.s, I have a
kill file. So please take into consideration that I may not have seen some
of the most significant postings.
The articles in A.r.s Week in Review are brief summaries of articles
posted to the newsgroup. They include message IDs for the original
articles, and many have a URL to get more information. You may be able to
find the original article, depending on how long your site stores articles
in the newsgroup before expiring them.
Free A.r.s Week in Review subscriptions are available.
Subscriptions are also available on ONElist. Email
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Week in Review is archived at:
> AnchorageThe Anchorage Daily News reported on September 30th that the mission there
celebrated Auditor's Day.
"The Church of Scientology will celebrate Auditor's Day today. The public
is welcome. On Sunday, the program is 'On Getting to Know Ourselves,' and
'group processing' exercises follow. The free introductory Dianetics
lecture 'What Is Preventing You From Having the Relationships That You
Really Want?' is at 7 p.m. Monday. All are welcome; no reservations are
> Jazz ConcertJeff Jacobsen reported on a Scientology sponsored jazz concert in
Clearwater, Florida this week.
"I called the phone number and what did the voice say? 'Welcome to AMC.'
Yes, AMC Publishing, the Scientologist run company that Lisa McPherson
worked for. Bennetta Slaughter, one of the owners, is very active in
community activities here. So I found out there would be a latin band
playing last night right on Cleveland Street, which was closed from Ft.
Harrison Ave. to the railroad tracks. I was shocked to see perhaps 50
people listening to a great 9-piece band. There were a few food vendors
looking dazed at the low turnout. Rev. Al Buttnor was there lurking on
the edges of the throng. Ben Shaw came by and gabbed with Al a bit.
Bennetta Slaughter was walking around here and there. The Scientology
photographer was around taking pictures of the band and the crowd. One
woman in Scientology staff uniform was there the whole time talking to
different people. I got the impression that the Scientologists I know were
NOT there to listen to the music but to work the event somehow. There were
probably 100 people max there."
> Digital LightwaveThe St. Petersburg Times published an article on September 30th on Bryan
Zwan, a Scientologist who founded Digital Lightwave.
"Digital Lightwave founder Bryan Zwan left the Clearwater company a year
ago and resigned from its board a month ago. But he's not shy about
reminding his former colleagues who's the majority stockholder. Zwan
wielded his 59 percent stake in Digital, a maker of fiber-optic testing
equipment, to shoot down the company's proposed stock option plan and to
add a fifth director to the company-backed slate of four directors.
"Still pending is an SEC suit against Zwan, who is accused of making false
statements to auditors. Zwan has denied the charges. Zwan's personal ties
to the Church of Scientology had marked Digital Lightwave as a
Scientology-affiliated business from its outset. Chastelet has severed any
appearance of ties to the church group, even relocating the company to
headquarters further away from Scientology's downtown Clearwater
"Currently, most of Digital's business is in selling portable test
machines and 10 percent to 15 percent is in equipment to monitor
fiber-optic networks. The latter equipment, which can be used to pinpoint
remote problems in a network, is expected to grow into about half of
Digital Lightwave's business by 2003, Chastelet said."
> MarathonThe Pasadena Star-News reported on August 21st that a Scientologist will
participate in a 1,500 mile run in France to protest alleged
"Spurred by his beliefs as a Scientologist, John Radich of Monrovia will
lace up his running shoes in September to participate in a roughly
1,500-mile marathon in France to spotlight what he calls religious
intolerance. 'France has blacklisted (about) 170 religions, including
Scientology. They want to monitor all these religions, and it's just not
OK,' said Radich, a track coach at Delphi Academy. The private school in
La Canada Flintridge, serving kindergarten through 12th grade, is operated
using study techniques developed by the late L. Ron Hubbard, a science
fiction writer who founded the Church of Scientology.
"But Yo-Jung Chen, vice consul in charge of press for the French Consulate
in Los Angeles, said the French government has not targeted any specific
religion or sect and has 'the (same) freedom of religion, the freedom of
speech, as in any Democratic country as is guaranteed by our
constitution.' Neither, he added, does France have a 'blacklist' of
"Last year, Radich, 45, ran in a marathon from Manhattan to Washington,
D.C., where he joined foundation members in a discussion with several
congressmen. The route for the 2000 Torch of Freedom Marathon will take
Radich and his fellow runners from Brussels through the French
countryside, where they will make various stops to meet with city leaders,
encouraging them to sign a Declaration of Human Rights that will either be
sent to the United Nations or presented to the French government.
"Karin Case, spokeswoman for the Lisa McPherson Trust, a Florida-based
Scientology watchdog group, said France and Germany don't see Scientology
as a religion. 'Germany and France believe it's a totalitarian
organization. They've been there and they don't want to go back there.
They look at it as an extremist political group,' she said."
> Ilse HrubyAn interview by Tilman Hausherr with Ilse Hruby was posted to a.r.s this
week. Hruby is the author of a new book in which she describes her
marriage to a Scientologist.
"It gradually came out that there was an X factor which I could not at
first identify. I commented that I was not as important to him as he was
to me. His 'religion' was clearly more important to him than I was, and
not only that, but his family wasn't really important to him either.
"I was getting increasingly curious and also suspicious; I bought Renate
Hartwig's first book in a bookstore, and when Peter discovered it, there
was a terrible fight; he thought that woman was a liar and that would be
why she had successfully sued Scientology multiple times. I responded to
him that if only 10 percent of what was in the book was true, then that
was bad enough by itself. My second attempt to obtain information about
the Scientology 'religion' brought me to Dr. Valentin in the office of the
Vienna Archdiocese. The information I got from Mrs. Valentin helped me put
together another piece of the puzzle which was starting to form. At least
from that time forward I knew what it was about and it became clear to me
that I would have to take care that I didn't get pulled in myself. Up to
that point in time, the Scientologists had covered me with 'love-bombing'
and I have to admit that it would not have been too hard to get me to be a
member of Scientology in order to save my marriage and restore peace to
"I took three short courses (statistics course, money and its dynamics,
and a course about the fair exchange of beans), more as a favor to my
husband than anything else and concluded that they were pure nonsense.
When I finished with my courses they wanted to sell me the next course and
the course after both at the same time. I got suggestions, I was supposed
to take courses like the 'Ups and Downs in Life' and the 'Communication
Course.' Then there came the suggestion that I could go to the Org and
work as 'staff' and have a lot of wins doing that. I just thought that not
only am I not a member of Scientology, but I had not intention of becoming
"Our married life was controlled by Scientology. Absolutely nothing was
off limits, my husband's minutely precise reports easily enabled total
supervision of our marriage. What had priority was the rules, regulations
and policies of Scientology. For instance he described the most intimate
details of how our married life worked in painful detail and he prepared
overt/withhold write-ups which were collected and delivered to the Org.
You could say I had the feeling that I was married to 35 people at the
"My son had very painfully hit his head against a bookshelf in his bed
room. I was not allowed to console my son or look to see if his wound was
bleeding or not; my husband took our son to the place where he had hit
himself on the bookshelf and then pressed the sore spot on his head up
against the shelf. In doing so he told my son that the pain would now flow
back into the bookshelf, which, of course, didn't happen. He did the same
thing with my son when he scraped his knee playing, his knee was pressed
up against the spot on the lawn and the little boy was told that the pain
would then travel back into the grass. I was not allowed to console my son
in that case, either, nobody was even supposed to speak to him.
"By the end of our marriage, my husband's debt was officially 2.2 million
Austrian shillings; I had never known, with certainty, the true extent of
his debt although I kept books for his company, because several amounts
always stayed unclear. On October 20, 1998, the separation order came
from the Scientology Org in Vienna, the bookkeeping was quickly
transferred over to 'Z' company and he had to separate from me
"During the divorce period, my husband and I were already living apart; it
was a very sad time for me, I had to force myself everyday to look after
and comfort my son and to go to work. I felt that I had been lied to and
cheated about a relationship for which I had to constantly fight and still
was fighting. Finally I had to realize that the winner of this fight had
already been determined at the beginning of it all, namely the Scientology
"Today, almost two years after the separation, I again have a very
admirable, intelligent and handsome man by my side and with his help I
have managed to close the chapter on 'My Marriage to a Scientologist' -
even though I will probably never be able to forget it."
> Keith HensonKeith Henson reported this week on his hearing for charges that he has
threatened Scientology's Gold Base with bombings and nuclear missiles.
"The judge set a date for a jury trial, Oct 30, trial readiness conference
on Oct 27, and pretrial conference on Oct. 11. He maintained the 300 yards
standoff distance and would not let me clarify if that is from the
buildings at gold base or from the property edge. Graham argued that the
picketing restriction should be lifted because the case was about messages
and not missiles and it did not pass constitutional muster, prosecutorial
muster or any other kind of muster. The judge disputed Graham's
characterization stating it was the usual condition for bail (not to
communicate with or harass the 'victims') and it would stand unless Henson
wanted his bail revoked.
"Hoden was sitting in the court and Graham introduced him for those of our
party who did not know him. After the rest of us were out in the hall, he
must have talked the bailiff into escorting him out of the courthouse and
keeping our party (Ida, Arel, Graham and me) in the courthouse till he was
gone from the parking lot. Afterwards Arel and Graham went out to picket
gold for an hour."
"The process server made a production by getting campus security to
accompany him while serving my daughter with a subpoena. They want to
depose her at the offices of Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker LLP in LA
on Oct. 24. As a guess, they would use (pit bull) Rosen who has been
sanctioned for deposition abuse in the past. The point, of course, is not
getting information for bankruptcy proceedings but to get at me by abusing
my daughter in deposition. We will attempt to quash the subpoena. Frank
Petty and Edwin Richardson made it really clear (on tape) what kind of
abuse she would be subjected to in a deposition."
From police reports on the case:
"I spoke with Ken Hoden, General Manager of Golden Era Productions. On
July 15th, Ken told me he noticed some threats being made against the
Church on the internet newsgroup, alt.Religion.scientology. In the
documents, it shows Keith discussing how an ICBM (intercontinental
ballistic missiles) could be accurate enough to hit the Church of
scientology. Gavina also showed me documents that have pictures of the
Church in San Jacinto, with satellite coordinates, so that a missile could
be accurately launched at the Church. The documents also show Keith
discussing how you would have to watch for weather for more accurate
missile shots. An excerpt from another document printed from this site,
shows Keith stating that, 'killing the organization off entirely is the
best way to change the future of Scientology.'
"I conducted a tape recorded interview with Keith at the Hemet station.
Keith stated that he does not like the Church of Scientology. He stated
that he sometimes says things on the site to make Miscavige 'paranoid'.
Keith said he has discussed ICBM's on the site, regarding the Church of
Scientology, but only meant any comments as a joke. He told me that he did
not have any means of actually getting an ICBM.
"On 08/03/00, Henson came to the Hemet Station for an interview. He first
picked the church in 1995 as a non-violent protest against Scientology. He
said picketing has been very effective because numerous people have either
left the church or not entered due to his picketing. Henson said the
church hates him because of the people that left as a results of his
picketing. It cost the church a lot of money invested on the people that
have left. When asked if he could build an atomic bomb. He said no, but
anyone could get the instructions on how to build one on the Internet. He
denies having access to an ICBM missile. He had no reputation of ever
using explosives of any kind to damage people or property.
"I asked if the sign (*) means the church. Henson said this symbol
identifies David Miscavige, the current leader of the church. Henson said
that the personnel at Golden Era don't stop working and run in just when
he comes out, but also with other people that picket. One weekend a
subject named Bruce Pettycrew came out a weekend after him, and Pettycrew
reported that workers left in such a hurry when they saw him, they left a
wheelbarrow full of cement to dry in the wheelbarrow. He pointed out that
the whole place shut down, so it's not just him.
"Henson showed me a computer disk with printing. He developed a machine
that printed on the disks. He had a contract with a company to make the
disks. Because Scientologist contacted the company and harassed the
employees about him, they canceled his contract. He said the company will
refer him, but they warn the other company about the church. Henson said
that every time he starts with a company someone from Scientology contacts
"I contacted Hoden at Golden Era Studios. I confirmed with Hoden that they
have had to alter bus schedules and work schedules due to the presence of
Henson. I asked Hoden to explain their fear of Henson. He said, they are
afraid that he might lob something over the fence or have someone else do
it. Henson always carries a sack when he is picketing the church, and
might leave something that might explode after he leaves. Hoden said that
is why they have an employee of the church follow Henson the entire time
he is at the church. They have instructed these employees to check any
object left by Henson. Hoden said they received information that around
1990, Henson got a patent in Washington DC on how to launch a missile or
bomb from an airplane. I contacted Henson at the home of Ida Camburn. I
asked Henson if he had ever filed an application for a patent. This was an
idea he had to assist in launching a satellite or space station into outer
space to be placed into orbit. Camburn, who also states she is shares the
anti-scientology beliefs, said that people from the church visited
numerous neighbors within her park, Sierra Dawn Mobile Home Park. Camburn
identified one of the church personnel as Muriel Dufresne, the head of
public relations for Golden Era. Camburn said she was contacted by several
neighbors who told her they were contacted by Muriel. Muriel told them
that Henson was staying with her and a danger to the community. Muriel
said that Henson was a child molester, killer and bomber.
"Per the District Attorney's Office this case will be submitted with an
arrest warrant declaration."
> Koos Nolst TreniteNuernberger Abendzeitung published an article on September 22nd about
former Scientologist Koos Nolst Trenite. Under German privacy laws, the
names have been altered in the story by the newspaper.
"Freya was just 19 when the doctor on emergency duty was called to her
death on December 25, 1999. Jakobus N. (51), the father of the deceased,
stood motionlessly in the room as did his son Nils (18). The doctor looked
for puncture marks on the naked body of the girl. 'When I touched her I
could only think, My God is she cold!' No puncture marks; the doctor
called the police. The autopsy showed that Freya N. had drowned. But the
circumstances are not clear. Nine months later her death is still
unexplained and the state attorney's office is investigating. Early
yesterday the police took the Dutchman Jakobus N. away from his house in
handcuffs. The man was committed to the psychiatric ward as a public
nuisance. That is because Jakobus N. succumbed to cult madness. He
subjected his wife and children to methods of torture for years. For
instance, he tortured his wife Carla by drenching her with cold water.
"When the mother met her future husband of 24 years, he was a member of
the Scientology sect. Jakobus' life goal was to rise to the top of the
sect hierarchy, but he was thwarted by the sect leaders. In the course of
the years, the man continued to be plagued with delusions. For instance,
Carla N. was supposed to recognize who was telephoning as soon as it rang.
When her telepathic powers would fail her, her husband perceived that as
"Freya was inducted as a secretary to her father. With her help, he used
the internet to spread his deluded ideas. 'L. Ron Hubbard, the founder of
the Scientologists, became his greatest enemy: although Hubbard was dead,
he said Hubbard was trying to annihilate him from the great beyond,' wrote
Carla N. on the mental state of her husband. 'L. Ron Hubbard, Jakobus
thinks, wants to start the Third World War.' In order to avoid that,
Jakobus N. thereafter proclaimed himself 'Ambassador to Mankind.' His
daughter Freya had to update his internet pages every day; she wouldn't
sit down at the computer until after she had taken two hours dictation
from her father. That was when she was 14.
"The expert for commitment summed it up succinctly: the first victim, the
mother Carla, escaped by fleeing. The second victim, daughter Freya, dead.
The third victim was now possessed by the devil. Early yesterday the fire
department broke the door down and police took Jakobus away. From the
house droned loud classical music. The evaluation resulted in Jakobus N.
being committed to a psychiatric ward. Nils, however, is free. Perhaps
he'll find his way back with psychological help."
> Jack ParsonsVariety reported this week that a film is being planned on the life of
Jack Parsons, who was associated with L. Ron Hubbard before the invention
"Angry Films producer Don Murphy and Scottish filmmaker Susan Montford
have optioned Jack Carter's 'Sex and Rockets: The Occult World of Jack
Parsons,' published in July by Feral House. Parsons, a rocket scientist,
inventor of WWII weaponry and co-founder of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory
in Pasadena, Calif., was a Satanist who held ceremonial orgies at his
mansion and was a friend-partner of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard. He
came under investigation by the FBI and eventually died in a mysterious
explosion that destroyed his home."
> BethlehemThe Bethlehem, Pennsylvania Express-Times reported on August 31st that a
local resident travels to Philadelphia to take Scientology courses.
"Arthur Moore walked into a Church of Scientology as a graduate student in
Montreal 26 years ago. He sat down to take a personality test and agreed
with its findings. 'I was very cautious about any kind of help
organization,' Moore recalls. 'So I read 'Dianetics' and it made a lot of
sense.' In turn, Moore took a communications course and has remained in
the church ever since.
"To practice Scientology, Moore commutes to a church in Philadelphia once
a week. There are no churches in the region. He says Scientology is the
fastest growing religion in the world, one that focuses on self-discovery
-- as opposed to being deity based. Auditing is one of the aspects of
reaching a higher spirituality, he says. By listening to a person
speaking, and measuring the energy coursing through their bodies during
the discussion, church members can learn where their spiritual trauma
"He is on the lower end of auditing, finishing a purification program.
Instead of concentrating on his path, he is focusing on informing people
about the religion he says 'has totally turned my life around.' Some feel
the church is a cult, or a money-making empire rather than a religion.
"The 1999 death of a church member in Florida raised speculation that
members were mistreated or abused. Lisa McPherson, 36, died of a blood
clot in her heart in 1995. The coroner originally said it was dehydration
and forced bed rest that killed the woman, according to newspaper
accounts. After further investigation, the coroner stated a new opinion,
not including dehydration or lack of movement."
> Protest SummaryJohn Ritson reported a protest in Brighton, England this week.
"A contingent of suppressives arrived in Brighton to picket the 'org'.
Apparently it is currently run by the 'Sea Org' and there was indeed a
sighting of a woman in uniform peeking from an upper window, but it is
still 'downstat' and 'non-confront'. All we saw, apart from the woman in
the window, were four or five staff members. We had the boom-box in full
operation again and we dominated the org's end of the shopping centre with
our leafleting, slogans and recorded excerpts of L Ron Hubbard's lunacy.
Nobody got body-routed, no students were seen, no members of the public
had any sympathy for the Scientologists. Many people thanked us and some
told us of their close encounters with the cult, such as the guy who took
a 'Personality Test' and was told he had communications problems and
needed to take a 'Communications Course' by someone who appeared
Jeff Jacobsen reported a protest at the Clearwater Bank building this
"Tonight we picketed the bank building on Cleveland and Ft. Harrison from
about 6:30-7:30pm. There were 4 of us with 2 videocameras. Cleveland
street was closed because of the arts festival from 9 to 5pm both Saturday
and Sunday. Since Cleveland is closed Co$ can't drive their buses up to
the cafeteria doors, so it looked like what they were doing was dropping
people off behind the Coachman Building and then they would either walk
through the Coachman Building or go through the alley right next to it.
They tried to time the troops to cross Cleveland street while none of us
were near Watterson Street (where the cafeteria entrance is). Finally us
picketers just stood near Watterson so the Scientologists had no choice
but to walk past our signs. We did not talk to the Scientologists but just
let our signs do the talking."
"AndroidCat" reported a protest in Toronto this week.
"Over 600 flyers passed out, over 50 buttons too. Attending: Gregg, Mike,
Slippery Jim d'Griz, and myself in the morning. Gregg, Mike, Kaeli,
ZeratulCat, and myself in the afternoon. The extra-duty officer was on the
job, and kept a watch on things. Twice he cautioned Paulette for snatching
flyers from Gregg. Dan was relatively well behaved. He only made one
death threat, which Gregg Didn't Get On Tape! It apparently went along the
lines of 'Mention my kids on the newsgroup again, and I'll kill you.'
Nobody would have known that Dan had kids if he hadn't posted that on the
"Dan asked what bugged me about Vecro Gwen's posting of parts of my credit
record. I told him it was the illegal obtaining and posting of it that
bugged me. Slippery Jim brought buttons. www.xenu.net buttons, lots of
> The ProfitMark Bunker reported that Scientology is attempting to disturb the
production of a movie being done by the Totally Fun Company.
"Peter Alexander and Patricia Greenway and making a new movie called 'The
Profit.' [A Channel 28] local newscast reports on the harassment that
Courage Productions has encountered while filming."
"Courage Productions, based in Tampa, Florida is currently in production
on the feature film, 'The Profit'. The Director of this film, Peter
Alexander and the Producer, Patricia Greenway also happen to be board
members of the LMT. They contacted the LMT recently to inform us that they
and their film were under attack by Scientologists.
"Members of The Foundation for Religious Tolerance have picketed the set,
handed out hate literature and investigated and visited the homes of crew
members working on the film. Six days before shooting was to be finished
on the movie, IATSE (The International Alliance of Theatrical and Stage
Employees) shut the set down with an illegal picket.
"Did Scientology exert pressure on the union to shut the film down? When
the union picket began, the Scientologists stopped their overt efforts.
Since the broadcast of this newscast, neither the union nor the
Scientologists have returned to the set."
> Scientology TrashThe Cincinnati Enquirer reported on September 5th that Scientology flyers
were largely discarded by attendees at a fireworks festival.
"The 50 or so maintenance workers who spent the Monday holiday cleaning up
after Sunday's fireworks festival say they've come to expect the annual
mess after Riverfest. But one thing did surprise this hard-to-impress
troop of trash eradicators - the size of Newport's crowd this year. 'One
of the biggest problems were these people that were passing out all these
fliers about being in touch with yourself, or stress relief or something.
People just took them and tossed them right on the ground.' The
fliers-turned-trash, which ironically carried the words 'How Toxic Are
You?' on the cover, came from an unknown distributor of the Cincinnati
branch of the Church of Scientology."
> Dr. Joan WoodPinellas/ Pasco Medical Examiner Dr. Joan Wood has left office after
resigning due to controversy over the Lisa McPherson case. From the St.
Petersburg Times on September 30:
"Chief Medical Examiner Joan Wood, the embattled doctor who swore never to
resign after 18 years at the helm, finally closed out her last autopsy,
cleared out her office this week and headed for a new start. Wood, 56,
was forced out of office after prosecutors earlier this year dropped
charges against the Church of Scientology, blaming Wood's reversal in the
death of Scientologist Lisa McPherson for hopelessly damaging their
criminal case. Wood's credibility with prosecutors may have been
irreparably damaged and, after insisting she would never willingly leave
office, she quietly handed in her resignation in June, effective today.
Wood has not returned repeated calls for comment over the last week, and
few know her plans.
"Dr. Jon Thogmartin, 36, Palm Beach County's highly regarded medical
examiner, has already accepted a local search committee's offer to replace
Wood. Thogmartin, who could not be reached for comment, is tentatively
scheduled to take over the Pinellas-Pasco medical examiner's office on
Dec. 1. In the meantime, State Attorney Bernie McCabe has appointed Dr.
Laura Hair as interim chief of the office. Hair had served as an associate
medical examiner under Wood.
"McCabe, the man whose case against Scientology may have been the victim
of Wood's reversal, had little to say about her departure. 'She's had a
distinguished career,' McCabe said this week. 'I think she can be proud of
the body of her work. I think citizens have been well served by her
> Writers of the FutureScientology announced the winners of the annual Writers and Illustrators
of the Future contest, held to honor L. Ron Hubbard.
"In the audience were Algis Budrys, Tim Powers, Frederic Pohl, Kevin J.
Anderson, Gregory Benford, Dr. Doug Beason, Larry Niven, Jerry Pournelle,
and Dr. Yoji Kondo. Judges attending the ceremony were Frank Kelly-Freas
and Laura Brodian-Freas, Vincent Di Fate and Ron and Val Lakey-Lindhan. L.
Ron Hubbard established the Writers of the Future Contest in 1984 as the
culmination of his life-long commitment to helping other writers, to
provide 'a means for new and budding writers to have a chance for their
creative efforts to be seen and acknowledged.' The companion Illustrators
of the Future Contest was inaugurated in 1988 for new artists in the field
of speculative fiction illustration.
"Receiving the Writers' Gold Award was Gary Murphy, from Houston, Texas
and Frank Wu from San Francisco was a recipient of the Illustrators Gold
Award. The event was also highlighted by the release of two new
publications: L. Ron Hubbard Presents Writer of the Future Volume XVI and
L. Ron Hubbard Presents The Best of Writers of the Future, Volume 1
collection of the winning stories from the first 8 years of the contest."