Gene Wolfe, author of more than 30 books including classics like The Book of The New Sun, has died at the age of 87.
Wolfe was kind enough to give me a blurb for my third novel, Someone Comes to Town, Someone Leaves Town, and to make references to it in his later work, something that thrills me even to this day when I think of it. I met him on a few occasions and shared a meal or two with him and found him to be the proverbial jolly old elf, full of wit and charm and mischief, the kind of person who looked and acted exactly as you'd expect he would, based on his marvellous body of work (this is a rarity as most of us writers are mundane introverts who put all of our wildness on the page).
I'm so sad to hear that he's gone. Although he lived a long and wonderful and varied life (he invented the Pringles machine!) and left behind a staggering and brilliant literary corpus, the world was a better place with him in it. I'll miss him.
Wolfe’s fans include Michael Swanwick, Neil Gaiman, Patrick O’Leary, Ursula K. Le Guin, and many, many more, and he was praised for his exciting prose and depth of character. Asked by editor Damon Knight to name his biggest influences, he replied: “G. K. Chesterton and Marks’ [Standard] Handbook for [Mechanical] Engineers.” In 2015 The New Yorker published this profile of Wolfe by Peter Bebergal, in which the two discussed his decades-long career—it’s well worth a read.
Wolfe won the Edward E. Smith Memorial Award in 1989, the World Fantasy Award for Life Achievement in 1996, and was inducted into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame in 2007. In 2012, The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America named him its 29th SFWA Grand Master.
Author and Grand Master Gene Wolfe, 1931-2019 [Tor.com]
From her groundbreaking first album Switched-On Bach (1968) to the unforgettable soundtracks for A Clockwork Orange (1971), The Shining (1980), and Tron (1982), Wendy Carlos is a living legend of electronic music. In March, Oxford University Press will publish Wendy Carlos: A Biography, written by musicologist Amanda Sewel, musical director of Interlochen Public Radio. From […]
Our cities’ sewers are some of the most incredible structures in the built environment. In a new book, “An Underground Guide to Sewers: or: Down, Through and Out in Paris, London, New York, &c.” historian Stephen Halliday explores the systems (and people) that deal with our shit so we don’t have to. From the book […]
Gregory Priore -- former archivist for Pittsburgh's Carnegie Library -- has pleaded guilty of stealing $8m worth of rare texts from the collection over a 25 year period, fencing them through John Schulman's Caliban Book Shop (Schulman has also pleaded guilty, and admitted to forgery as well).
Photoshop is one of the most widely used photo editing tools out there, to the point that it’s the default program designers think of whenever they need work done. Small wonder, too: The flagship software in Adobe’s creative suite is very powerful — if you know how to use it. There is a lot to […]
Bamboo fiber is a relatively new thing in luxury fabrics, but it’s no surprise it’s this snuggly. After all, pandas eat bamboo, and they constantly look comfortable. But seriously: To understand the benefits of real bamboo sheets, you have to spend a night on them. This 4-Piece Luxury 100% Rayon Bamboo Sheet Set is a […]
No chef’s arsenal is complete without a good set of knives. In fact, it’s the first big sign that you’re ready to start cooking meals as opposed to just warming them up. Here are 20 knife sets that any chef would be proud to own, from visually stunning old-world metallurgy to sleek modern cutlery. Mini […]