Fredric William Brown – USA (1906 – 1972)

One of the most ingenious American crime and mystery writers, who published science fiction to overcome – as he said – the too real aspect of detective fiction. Brown also wrote television plays for Alfred Hitchcock series. Brown’s plots were inventive, he used often humour and paradoxes, and his sex scenes were gleefully provocative … (full long text).

He said: “Base your villain on someone you like. That’ll give him some sympathetic traits and make him much more believable”. Mouse, by Fredric Brown: Bill Wheeler was, as it happened, looking out of the window of his bachelor apartment on the fifth floor on the corner of 83rd Street and Central Park West when the spaceship from Somewhere landed … (full short story).

SOLIPSIST, a 5 minutes video, based on a Fredric Brown’s short story.

A Homepage dedicated to Fredric Brown’s life and work.

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Fredric William Brown – USA (1906 – 1972)

His writing career.

He said also: “There are no rules. You can write a story, if you wish, with no conflict, no suspense, no beginning, middle or end. Of course, you have to be regarded as a genius to get away with it, and that’s the hardest part – convincing everybody you’re a genius”. (thrillingdetective.com).

Books from 1955 with US copyright not renewed. (KingKongDemon).

… For anyone who only knows Brown’s writings by his vast number of humorous stories and novels, The Lights in the Sky Are Stars may come as a shock, for although optimistic, it is a serious novel, although a moment of levity occurs when Max describes an old science fiction novel which he is sure is now out of print and which turns out to be Brown’s own What Mad Universe, sadly currently, temporarily we can only hope, out of print. Although The Lights in the Sky Are Stars may not be as fun a read as What Mad Universe or Martians, Go Home, it does present a different side to Fredric Brown and should be more widely read than it is.
(SFsite.com).

The story is “Answer”, from Angels and Spaceships, by FredricBrown (Dutton, 1954).

… Fredric Brown’s work continued in print after his death in1972. A decade later, his many stories written for magazines and anthologies earlier in his career were collected for the first time in a definitive edition. It ran to 16 volumes.

Book/Film: Martians, Go Home:

Fredric Brown’s “Answer”:

  • Dwan Ev ceremoniously soldered the final connection with gold.
  • The eyes of a dozen television cameras watched him and the subether bore throughout the universe a dozen pictures of what he was doing.
  • He straightened and nodded to Dwar Reyn, then moved to a position beside the switch that would complete the contact when he threw it. The switch that would connect, all at once, all of the monster computing machines of all the populated planets in the universe – ninety-six billion planets – into the supercircuit that would connect them all into one supercalculator, one cybernetics machine that would combine all the knowledge of all the galaxies.
  • Dwar Reyn spoke briefly to the watching and listening trillions.
  • Then after a moment’s silence he said, “Now, Dwar Ev.”
  • Dwar Ev threw the switch. There was a mighty hum, the surge of power from ninety-six billion planets. Lights flashed and quieted along the miles-long panel.
  • Dwar Ev stepped back and drew a deep breath. “The honor of asking the first question is yours, Dwar Reyn.”
  • “Thank you,” said Dwar Reyn. “It shall be a question which no single cybernetics machine has been able to answer.”
  • He turned to face the machine. “Is there a God?”
  • The mighty voice answered without hesitation, without the clicking of a single relay.
  • “Yes, now there is a God.”
  • Sudden fear flashed on the face of Dwar Ev. He leaped to grab the switch. A bolt of lightning from the cloudless sky struck him down and fused the switch shut.

(on Instituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare, Italia).

What Mad Universe, links to information on Frederic Brown, and afew short short novels in French.

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One of the strange things about it was that Aubrey Walters wasn’t at all a strange little girl. She was quite as ordinary as her father and mother, who lived in an apartment on Otis Street, and who played bridge one night a week, went out somewhere another night, and spent the other evenings quietly at home. Aubrey was nine, and had rather stringy hair and freckles, but at nine one never worries about such things. She got along quite well in the not-too-expensive private school to which her parents sent her, she made friends easily and readily with other children, and she took lessons on a three-quarter-size violin and played it abominably. Her greatest fault, possibly, was her predeliction for staying up late of nights, and that was the fault of her parents, really, for letting her stay up and dressed until she felt sleepy and wanted to go to bed. Even at five and six, she seldom went to bed before ten o’clock in the evening. And if, during a period of maternal concern, she was put to bed earlier, she never went to sleep anyway. So why not let the child stay up? … (full short story).

Fredric Brown’s The Weapon, Mind Webs, WHA radio, 1977.

Find him and his publications: on the Fredric Brown Index; on Fredric Brown, Summary Bibliography on ISFDB; on some of FB’s short stories, as audios, videos or texts on SQUIDOO; on fantastic fiction; on wikipedia/Bibliography; on amazon; on CyberSpace Spinner; on e-bay.co.uk; on Google Book-search; on Google Inauthor-search; on Google Blog-search.

Finde ihn auch auf wikipedia; auf Lesekost; auf Phantastik-Couch.de; in Die grünen Teufel vom Mars;

Le cafard cosmique;

A short bio of his parents.

Fredric Brown (October 29, 1906, Cincinnati – March 11, 1972) was an American science fiction and mystery writer. He was one of the boldest early writers in genre fiction in his use of narrative experimentation. While never in the front rank of popularity in his lifetime, Brown has developed a considerable cult following in the almost half century since he last wrote. His works have been periodically reprinted and he has a worldwide fan base, most notably in the U.S. and Europe, and especially in France, where there have been several recent movie adaptations of his work. He also remains popular in Japan. Never financially secure, Brown—like many other pulp writers—often wrote at a furious pace in order to pay bills. This accounts, at least in part, for the uneven quality of his work. A newspaperman by profession, Brown was only able to devote 14 years of his life as a full-time fiction writer. Brown was also a heavy drinker, and this at times doubtless affected his productivity. A cultured man and omnivorous reader whose interests ranged far beyond those of most pulp writers, Brown had a lifelong interest in the flute, chess, poker, and the works of Lewis Carroll. (full long text).

Brown married twice and was the father of two sons … (full long text).

links:

Colossus: The Forbin Project, 16-05-2008;

Martians and Misplaced Clues: The Life and Work of Fredric Brown, By Jack Seabrook, 1993, 312 pages;

Stories listed by Authors, Miscellaneous Anthologies, Galactic Central;

Fredric William Brown op de boekenplank.

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