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NASA Appreciation of Bradbury
NASA hosted a televised news briefing at 11:30 a.m. PDT, August 22nd..
Ray Bradbury – An Appreciation by Fred Patten
I entered junior high school just as Ballantine Books started publishing original s-f paperbacks. While my teachers looked down on most paperbacks as cheap trash, they approved of Ballantine’s as Literature. One of Ballantine’s first s-f titles, and one of the first “adult” books that I bought for myself, was Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451.
I thrilled to find comic-book adaptations of many of his best stories in the “EC horror comics” (many of which were straight s-f, not horror) of the early 1950s. Throughout my teens, Bradbury was there with a new book, most of them weirdly/wonderfully illustrated by Joe Mugnaini. The October Country. Dandelion Wine. A Medicine for Melancholy. Something Wicked This Way Comes.
Bradbury published four issues of his own spirit-duplicated fanzine in the 1930’s, “Futuria Fantasia”, and later tried to destroy all copies because he was embarrassed at how bad his earliest s-f was. (I got a couple of the issues, now part of the Eaton Collection of Science Fiction and Fantasy at the UCRiverside research library. Yeah, ‘pretty bad” doesn’t begin to describe it.) How he hitchhiked cross-country to attend the First World Science-Fiction Convention in New York in 1939, and was not going to go to the $1.00 “banquet” because he couldn’t afford the buck. (Fellow LASFS member Forrest J Ackerman loaned it to him. There is a photograph of the L.A. fans cavorting together at Coney Island before returning home after the convention; Bradbury is grinning in the front row.)
How proud he was of one of his first professional sales, about how the Earth is invaded by invulnerable aliens who are going to kill all humans, and how the humans trick them by surgically transplanting all their brains into their pet dogs & cats. (“Subterfuge”, Astonishing Stories, April 1943.) Bradbury boasted about it until another fan replied, “Yeah, and then we get to drink out of toilets for the rest of our lives.” Bradbury stopped talking about it. (I was going to say that that’s one story that you won’t find in Bradbury’s collections of his short fiction, but I see that he finally put it into, or agreed to its inclusion in, Collected Stories of Ray Bradbury: A Critical Edition; Volume 1: 1938-1943; Kent State Univ. Press, April 2011.)
West Hollywood Library Panel on Bradbury
Back on Saturday, April 28, 2012 The Los Angeles Science Fantasy Society Hosted a panel at the West Hollywood Library. This panel was part of a lecture series on Ray Bradbury. Our panel was called "Science Fiction and the Enduring Influence of Ray Bradbury". Our guest speakers were: Jerry Pournelle, Larry Niven, John DeChancie and Harry Turtledove.
The West Hollywood Library has provided a video of this panel discussion .
The city of Los Angeles named an intersection for Ray Bradbury. As of December 6, 2012, the intersection of 5th and Flower Streets (near the LA Central Library) is now officially Ray Bradbury Square. The photo to the right shows LASFS members Michelle Pincus and David Brin at the dedication ceremony.
|Last Updated ( Sunday, 09 December 2012 )|