My friend Andrew handed me a book nearly six years ago. He said, “Here, this is by one of my favorite authors, you should read it,” (or something like that). It was titled Fahrenheit 451 written by Ray Bradbury.
I am a person who tends to view science fiction or fantasy in an unfriendly light. It is Ironic because that is what I love and write. However, I believe the reason is one in the same with my aversion to anything self published, because it tends to be poor. There are many authors “published” on Smashwords, but that does not mean they are good, though I’m sure there are some very good ones.
Another reason I struggle with fantasy is because I don’t find the main plots and drivers to be culturally relevant.
I’m not saying it has to have a financial crisis or political gridlock as plot lines, sometimes you need something to aspire to and Bradbury with his forward thinking mind provided this. He wrote of far flung places like Mars, other galaxies, and dystopian earth, however he, could not have been more prophetic about our society and our technological dependence. He wrote, mastered, and solidified Science Fiction as an art form.
One beautifully penned article said this about Mr Bradbury,
Ray Bradbury anticipated iPods, interactive television, electronic surveillance and live, sensational media events, including televised police pursuits — and not necessarily as good things
The man wrote feverishly. What I mean by that is he wrote every day for nearly his entire life. He died at ninety one so I suspect he wrote every day for about seventy years and his desire to write burned bright even unto death. Can you imagine that? Based on what I have read, he never had a day off, he merely plunged again and again in the well of his creativity as if he had his own private ocean of it.
What would happen if you and I wrote like he did? What would happen if we wrote every day? I am sure I would have a lot more than one novel finished.
To Ray Bradbury though, writing was never about the money. He was about the craft and if there is any advice he would echo from the grave it would be to write and burn bright and long as you do so.
Goodbye Mr. Bradbury, and thanks.