Ray Bradbury: Master of the Science Fiction Genre
His books and collected writings brought modern science fiction into the literary mainstream.
Ray Bradbury was one of the most celebrated 20th century American writers of speculative fiction.
Ray Bradbury photograph by Jacques Sassier courtesy of Random House
Bradbury, author of more than 500 published literary works, was born in Waukegan, Illinois, in 1920. Later he lived briefly at Tucson, Arizona. He died at Los Angeles, California, in 2012 at age 91.
- He was "the writer most responsible for bringing modern science fiction into the literary mainstream," according to the New York Times.
- He had the ability "to write lyrically and evocatively of lands an imagination away, worlds he anchored in the here and now with a sense of visual clarity and small-town familiarity," according to the Los Angeles Times.
- His works influenced countless writers, artists, teachers, scientists, thinkers, explorers.
As a boy he loved magic and wanted to become a magician. With his creativity encouraged by his family, Bradbury began writing, a skill which in his hands was magical.
At age 17 in 1937, Bradbury became a member of the Los Angeles Science Fiction League, where he published his first work, a short lived science fiction fan magazine. His first short story was published in Weird Tales when he was 20.
His major works:
Five of his novels were made into major motion pictures:
- Dark Carnival (1947)
- Martian Chronicles (1950)
- The Illustrated Man (1951)
- Fahrenheit 451 (1953).
- The Golden Apples of the Sun (1953)
- Dandelion Wine (1957)
- Something Wicked This Way Comes (1962)
- Death is a Lonely Business (1985)
- The April Witch (1987)
- Death Has Lost Its Charm (1987)
- The Toynbee Collector (1988)
- Graveyard for Lunatics (1990)
- Folon's Folon's (1990)
- Zen in the Art of Writing: Essays on Creativity (1991)
- A Chrestomathy of Ray Bradbury: A Dramatic Selection (1991)
- Let's All Kill Constance (2002)
- One More for the Road (2002)
- The Homecoming (2006)
Bradbury wrote and/or produced:
- The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms (1953 film, from Bradbury's The Fog Horn short story of 1951)
- It Came from Outer Space (1953 film in 3D from a Bradbury treatment)
- Fahrenheit 451 (1966 film)
- The Illustrated Man (1969 film)
- Something Wicked This Way Comes (1983 film)
His Ray Bradbury Theater cable TV show (HBO 1985-86 and USA 1988-92) won awards.
- Scripts for the television shows Alfred Hitchcock Presents and The Twilight Zone
- two musicals
- dramatic presentations of some of his novels
- the screenplay for Moby Dick (1953)
Bradbury consulted on the 1963 World's Fair. He helped design the Spaceship Earth ride at Disney World's EPCOT Center.
Bradbury also wrote works of horror, fantasy and mystery.
He received numerous awards:
Ray Bradbury was one of the preeminent science fiction writers of his generation. Others of his time in the 20th century included Isaac Asimov (1920-1992), Arthur C. Clarke (1917-2008) and Robert A. Heinlein (1907-1988).
- the O. Henry Memorial Award
- the Benjamin Franklin Award
- the Aviation-Space Writer's Association Award
- the World Fantasy Lifetime Achievement Award
- the Science Fiction Writers of America Grand Master Award
- The National Book Foundation recognized him with its medal for his Distinguished Contribution to American Letters (2000)
- The National Medal of Arts (2004)
- The Pulitzer Prize Special Citation (2007)
- The Dandelion Crater on the Moon was named after Bradbury's novel Dandelion Wine.
Learn more about Ray Bradbury:
- Ray Bradbury - Wikipedia »
- Official Ray Bradbury Site »
- Ray Bradbury - IMDb »
- Ray Bradbury Online »
- Ray Bradbury Quotes »
- New York Times: Resources about Ray Bradbury »
- USA Today: 'Fahrenheit' author reshaped sci-fi genre »
- Washington Post: Bradbury's literary themes gave glimpse into the future »
- Ray Bradbury bibliography - Wikipedia »
- Fahrenheit 451 - Wikipedia »
- Martian Chronicles - Wikipedia »
- It Came from Outer Space - Wikipedia »
- The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms - Wikipedia »
- The Illustrated Man - Wikipedia »
- Something Wicked This Way Comes - Wikipedia »
- The Golden Apples of the Sun - Wikipedia »
- The Twilight Zone - Wikipedia »
- Ray Bradbury Theater - Wikipedia »
- Alfred Hitchcock Presents - Wikipedia »
- Weird Tales - Wikipedia »
- Isaac Asimov - Wikipedia »
- Arthur C. Clarke - Wikipedia »
- Robert A. Heinlein - Wikipedia »
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© 2012 Dr. Anthony Curtis, Mass Communication Dept., University of North Carolina at Pembroke 910.521.6616 e-mail home page