Norman Spinrad: Wikis

  
  
  

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Norman Spinrad

Norman Richard Spinrad (born September 15, 1940) is an American science fiction author.

Norman Spinrad, born in New York City, is a graduate of the Bronx High School of Science. In 1957 he entered City College of New York and graduated in 1961 with a Bachelor of Science degree as a pre-law major. In 1966 he moved to San Francisco, then to Los Angeles, and now lives in Paris. He married fellow novelist N. Lee Wood in 1990; they divorced in 2005. They had no children. Spinrad served as President of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) from 1980 to 1982 and again from 2001 to 2002.

Contents

Selected works

The Iron Dream

The Iron Dream is an alternate history novel, the bulk of which consists of a fictional fantasy classic entitled Lord of the Swastika, written by one Adolf Hitler, who in the novel is a writer rather than a demagogue. The remainder of the book is critical commentary on the text. According to an article attributed to Spinrad [1] the book was banned for eight years in Germany, but was finally exonerated after appeals. More accurately, the sale of the book was permitted but the public display of the book or its covers was prohibited although there was no swastika symbol on the cover of the indexed first German edition.

Child of Fortune

Child of Fortune deals with the adventures of a young woman, Moussa, in her search for her true calling. In Moussa's culture, young people of her age and class undertake a wanderjahr during which they wander from planet to planet, free to go wherever and do whatever they wish. While on their travels they are known as Children of Fortune, and are treated with indulgence and kindness by most in memory of their own wanderjahr. The Children of Fortune blend elements of gypsies, hippies of 1960s America, and other groups and legends, including Peter Pan. While some parents give their children a great deal of money for the trip, Moussa's parents believe that she will learn more with a true wanderjahr rather than a subsidized tour, so they give her nothing but a voucher for a one-way ticket home. Moussa becomes a "ruespieler" or storyteller, and takes the name "Wendy" in honor of Pater Pan, the man she meets, loves, and loses during her wanderjahr.

The wanderjahr bears a superficial resemblance to the Grand Tour which many upper-class young men undertook after finishing school, the difference being that Children of Fortune are expected to have explored themselves as well as the world during their travels, and to come home knowing who they are and what place they want for themselves.

Bug Jack Barron

Bug Jack Barron (1969), a pre-cyberpunk tale of a cynical, exploitative talk-show host who gradually uncovers a conspiracy concerning an immortality treatment and the methods used in that treatment, was serialised in the British magazine New Worlds during Michael Moorcock's editorship. With its explicit language and cynical attitude to politicians, it roused one British Member of Parliament's ire at the magazine's partial funding by the British Arts Council. A memorable quote from this novel is, "The saddest day of your life isn't when you decide to sell out. The saddest day of your life is when you decide to sell out and nobody wants to buy."

Star Trek

Spinrad wrote the script for an episode of the original Star Trek entitled "The Doomsday Machine".

Bibliography

Novels

  • The Solarians (1966)
  • Agent of Chaos (1967)
  • The Men in the Jungle (1967)
  • Bug Jack Barron (1969)
  • The Iron Dream (1972)
  • Passing through the Flame (1975)
  • Riding the Torch (1978)
  • A World Between (1979)
  • Songs from the Stars (1980)
  • The Mind Game (1980)
  • The Void Captain's Tale (1983)
  • Child of Fortune (1985)
  • Little Heroes (1987)
  • Children of Hamelin (1991)
  • Russian Spring (1991)
  • Deus X (1993)
  • Pictures at 11 (1994)
  • Journals of the Plague Years (1995)
  • Greenhouse Summer (1999)
  • He walked among us (2003)
  • The Druid King (2003)
  • Mexica (2005)

Collections

  • The Last Hurrah of the Golden Horde (1970)
  • No Direction Home (May 1975)
  • The Star-Spangled Future (1979)
  • Other Americas (1988)
  • Vampire Junkies (1994)

His short story "Down the Rabbit Hole" (1966) was published in the anthology The War Book (edited by James Sallis, 1969).

Teleplays

Non-fiction

  • Science Fiction in the Real World. Carbondale, IL: Southern Illinois University Press, 1990.

External links








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