Sunday, April 29, 2018

Five stories that celebrate the everyday in science fiction

Jack McDevitt is the Nebula Award–winning author of The Academy series, including The Long Sunset. He went to La Salle University, then joined the Navy, drove a cab, became an English teacher, took a customs inspector’s job on the northern border, and didn’t write another word for a quarter-century. He received a master’s degree in literature from Wesleyan University in 1971. He returned to writing when his wife, Maureen, encouraged him to try his hand at it in 1980. Along with winning the Nebula Award in 2006, he has also been nominated for the Hugo Award, the Nebula Award, the Arthur C. Clarke Award, the John W. Campbell Memorial Award, and the Philip K. Dick Award. In 2015 he was awarded the Robert A. Heinlein Award for Lifetime Achievement.

At McDevitt tagged "five stories, from the heart, about science fiction and everyday life," including:
I’ve had a passion for space ships since I was four years old, when my father took me to our local movie theater to watch the Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon serials. I’ve also had an intense interest in archeology all my life. I don’t know where it came from, but I suspect it arrived on the day I read Ray Bradbury’s “The Million-Year Picnic,” in which a family living on Mars approach the edge of one of the canals. The kids want to know where the Martians are. Mom and Dad had promised they’d see Martians.

Dad points at the water. “There they are,” he says. The kids look down but see only their own reflections. And then they realize they are the Martians.

After that I was never able to walk away from the glories of lost civilizations.
Read about the other entries on the list.

Writers Read: Jack McDevitt (April 2018).

--Marshal Zeringue