Thursday, June 20, 2013

R.I.P. Jack Vance

On May 26, 2013, sci-fi and fantasy author Jack Vance died at the age of 96. He won the Hugo Award in 1963, 1967, and 2010, and the Nebula Award in 1967. A 2009 profile in The New York Times Magazine described Vance as "one of American literature’s most distinctive and undervalued voices."

He was best-known for his fantasy/scifi series, collectively called the Dying Earth series, comprising four books originally published 1950 to 1984. The Dying Earth series is set in the distant future on a barren and frigid Earth, where the sun is on the verge of dying out. Magic and monsters have returned as a dominant force. 

His work created an entire post-apocalyptic subgenre of scifi, set in the final days of the Earth, also called the Dying Earth subgenre. A short list of authors influenced by his work: Michael Chabon, Frank Herbert, Michael Moorcock, Roger Zelazny, Gene Wolfe, Terry Pratchett, Gardner Dozois, Neil Gaiman,George R. R. Martin, Terry Dowling, Poul Anderson, Robin Hobb, Dan Simmons, Kage Baker, Robert Silverberg, Dean Koontz, Ursula K. Le Guin, and Jeff Vandermeer.

Did you ever read Jack Vance's work? Has his work influenced you? Let me know in the comments.

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