Remembering Ray Bradbury
Saturday, June 16, 2012 (Listed under Observations)
As a co-founder of Inkubate.com, I'm deeply saddened by the passing of our friend, Ray Bradbury, the National Medal of Arts recipient, best known for such seminal works as Fahrenheit 451 and The Martian Chronicles. Remarkably, some of Ray's last public commentary about the status of the publishing industry focused on Inkubate and its goal of helping writers build their careers:
“Inkubate is giving voice to new writers as well as resurrecting those that should not be forgotten. They have posted three of Dolph Sharp's published but out of print works. Dolph began the writers' group that I was in for over 35 years. Inkubate is the place to go for talent.”
Bradbury heard about Inkubate through Dolph's daughter and my friend, E.E. (Evie) King, also a writer and Bradbury's protégé. Bradbury was delighted to learn that Evie's short stories were discovered on Inkubate. Talking together recently, Evie commented, “Ray knew that The Illustrated Man inspired me to connect several of my new shorts into a novel and I wish that he knew that I just received a serialization deal for this work. He would have been so excited for me.”
Recalling Bradbury's career, Evie explained, “What was so special about Ray was that he regularly took an interest in talented, up-and-coming writers and was always so generous with his time. For many years, Ray wanted me to read him only my stuff. Recently, though, he asked me to pick my favorite books of his and then he'd say, smiling, “Read me the Table of Contents!” and make his request. I loved reading to Ray and losing him is like losing my father all over again.”
Bradbury, of course, insisted that he was a science fantasy writer, not a science fiction writer. Reflecting on his essays, King added, “Unlike his fiction, they were written in a thick, scholarly style and the depth and breadth of Ray's knowledge came through. Science fantasy has many social implications and it was the analysis of society and social systems that captivated Ray the most.”
It goes without saying that Inkubate is very humbled and proud to have received notice from this literary giant. His was a life well done. Our condolences go out to Evie and her family, as well as Ray's four daughters.
King will be paying tribute to Bradbury, on Saturday, June 23rd, at the Ojai, CA Library (2-5 p.m.), a literary event that is part of the Ojai Writers Conference & Workshops. Evie will be traveling to Ojai with literary legend, Connie Martinson, who, on the same day, is receiving an honorary award at a Library Book Tea for her “Outstanding Volunteerism in Literary Arts.” Connie's website links to her YouTube videos of author interviews.
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