Ray Bradbury

Ray Bradbury
Ray Bradbury

Ray Douglas Bradbury (born August 22, 1920) is a science fiction and fantasy writer of Swedish descent. (Many people incorrectly assume his first name is short for "Raymond".)


Early life

Ray Bradbury was born in Waukegan, Illinois to a Swedish mother. His family moved several times, eventually settling in Los Angeles in 1934. In his family were many publishers of books and not surprisingly, Bradbury was a reader and writer throughout his youth. He graduated high school in Los Angeles but chose not to attend college. To make a living, he sold newspapers. He educated himself at the library and, having been influenced by science fiction heroes like Flash Gordon and Buck Rogers, Bradbury soon began to successfully publish science fiction stories. He sold his first stories to pulp magazines in the early 1940s. His first book, the collection Dark Carnival, was published in 1947.

He has also worked on screenplays, including Moby Dick (1956) and King of Kings (1961), directed by John Huston and Nicholas Ray, respectively. Bradbury wrote the voice-over narration for King of Kings, notably Christ's final monologue, but did not receive screen credit.

Bradbury wrote several scripts for the original Twilight Zone (1959), though the only one produced was an adaptation of his own short story "I Sing the Body Electric!".

His short story "The Foghorn", in which a sea monster mistakes a foghorn for the mating cry of a female, was adapted into the film The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms in 1953. Several of his stories were adapted by EC Comics in the 1950s, and later, a number of his novels were made into films. The Martian Chronicles was made into a miniseries starring Rock Hudson in 1979. Adaptations of his short stories were used as the basis for a television series, the Ray Bradbury Theater, along with his own screenplays, in the mid 1980s. A film adaptation of A Sound of Thunder is due to be released in 2005.

In between his fiction work Bradbury has written many short essays on serious subjects concerning the Arts and Culture, attracting the attention of serious critics in this field.

Bradbury was also a consultant for the American Pavilion at the 1964 New York World's Fair, and he designed the exhibit housed in EPCOT's Spaceship Earth geosphere at Disney World.


Note that for Bradbury, there is some blurring of categories, and the distinctions below are somewhat subjective, for he frequently has written multiple short stories about a set of characters or a subject, making minor edits or adding supplemental material, and calling the results a "novel".

Although he is often described as a science fiction writer, Bradbury does not box himself into any particular categorization:

"First of all, I don't write science fiction. I've only done one science fiction book and that's Fahrenheit 451, based on reality. Science fiction is a depiction of the real. Fantasy is a depiction of the unreal. So Martian Chronicles is not science fiction, it's fantasy. It couldn't happen, you see? That's the reason it's going to be around a long time -- because it's a Greek myth, and myths have staying power." [1] (http://weeklywire.com/ww/09-27-99/alibi_feat1.html)


  • One well known irony is that Bradbury, despite writing about spaceships and interplanetary travel, has never driven a car. He attributes this to having seen a gruesome car accident when he was young.
  • Ray Bradbury also never rode on a plane until the age of 63.


Short story collections

In addition to these collections, many of the stories have been recollected into several "Best Of" style volumes.



Honors and Awards

For his contribution to the motion picture industry, Ray Bradbury has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6644 Hollywood Blvd.

There is an asteroid named in his honor called (9766) Bradbury, along with a crater on the moon called "Dandelion Crater" (named after his novel, Dandelion Wine).

On November 17, 2004, Bradbury was the recipient of the National Medal of Arts, presented by President George W. Bush and Laura Bush.

He has also received the World Fantasy Award life achievement, Stoker Award life achievement, SFWA Grand Master, SF Hall of Fame Living Inductee, and First Fandom Award.

The "About the Author" sections in several of his published works claim that he has been nominated for an Academy Award. A search of the Academy's awards database [2] (http://awardsdatabase.oscars.org/ampas_awards/BasicSearchInput.jsp) proves this to be incorrect. Two films he has worked on, Icarus Montgolfier Wright and Moby Dick have been nominated for Oscars, but Bradbury himself has not.

Further reading

  • Sam Weller, The Bradbury Chronicles : The Life of Ray Bradbury, HarperCollins (April 5, 2005), hardcover, 384 pages, ISBN 006054581X

External links


cs:Ray Bradbury da:Ray Bradbury de:Ray Bradbury et:Ray Bradbury es:Ray Bradbury eo:Ray BRADBURY fr:Ray Bradbury it:Ray Bradbury he:ריי ברדבורי nl:Ray Bradbury ja:レイ・ブラッドベリ pl:Ray Bradbury ru:Брэдбери, Рэй sk:Ray Bradbury sv:Ray Bradbury th:เรย์ เบรดบิวรี่


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