Algis Budrys

Last updated

Algis Budrys
Algis Budrys 1985.jpg
Budrys at the 1985 Clarion Science Fiction Writing Workshop
BornJanuary 9, 1931
Königsberg, East Prussia
DiedJune 9, 2008(2008-06-09) (aged 77)
Evanston, Illinois, United States
OccupationNovelist, Short-story writer, editor, Critic
GenreScience fiction
Notable works The Falling Torch , Rogue Moon , Who?
Budrys's "Snail's Pace" was the cover story for the October 1953 issue of Dynamic Science Fiction Dynamic science fiction 195310.jpg
Budrys's "Snail's Pace" was the cover story for the October 1953 issue of Dynamic Science Fiction
Budrys's novelette "Shadow on the Stars" was cover-featured on the November 1954 issue of Fantastic Universe. Fantastic universe 195411.jpg
Budrys's novelette "Shadow on the Stars" was cover-featured on the November 1954 issue of Fantastic Universe .
Budrys's short story "Cage of a Thousand Wings" took the cover of the penultimate issue of Planet Stories in 1955. Planet stories 1955spr.jpg
Budrys's short story "Cage of a Thousand Wings" took the cover of the penultimate issue of Planet Stories in 1955.
Budrys's novelette "The Strangers" was the cover story for the June 1955 issue of If. If 195506.jpg
Budrys's novelette "The Strangers" was the cover story for the June 1955 issue of If .
Budrys's novelette "Why Should I Stop?" took the cover of the February 1956 issue of Science Fiction Quarterly. Science fiction quarterly 195602.jpg
Budrys's novelette "Why Should I Stop?" took the cover of the February 1956 issue of Science Fiction Quarterly .
Budrys wrote "Resurrection on Fifth Avenue" for Fantastic under his pseudonym "Gordon Jaulyn". Fantastic 195712.jpg
Budrys wrote "Resurrection on Fifth Avenue" for Fantastic under his pseudonym "Gordon Jaulyn".

Algirdas Jonas "Algis" Budrys (January 9, 1931 – June 9, 2008) was a Lithuanian-American science fiction author, editor, and critic. He was also known under the pen names Frank Mason, Alger Rome (in collaboration with Jerome Bixby), John A. Sentry, William Scarff, and Paul Janvier.

Lithuania republic in Northeastern Europe

Lithuania, officially the Republic of Lithuania, is a country in the Baltic region of Europe. Lithuania is considered to be one of the Baltic states. It is situated along the southeastern shore of the Baltic Sea, to the east of Sweden and Denmark. It is bordered by Latvia to the north, Belarus to the east and south, Poland to the south, and Kaliningrad Oblast to the southwest. Lithuania has an estimated population of 2.8 million people as of 2019, and its capital and largest city is Vilnius. Other major cities are Kaunas and Klaipėda. Lithuanians are Baltic people. The official language, Lithuanian, along with Latvian, is one of only two living languages in the Baltic branch of the Indo-European language family.

Copy editing is the process of reviewing and correcting written material to improve accuracy, readability, and fitness for its purpose, and to ensure that it is free of error, omission, inconsistency, and repetition. In the context of publication in print, copy editing is done before typesetting and again before proofreading, the final step in the editorial cycle.

Jerome Bixby American short story writer, editor and scriptwriter

Drexel Jerome Lewis Bixby was an American short story writer and scriptwriter. He wrote the 1953 story "It's a Good Life" which was the basis for a 1961 episode of The Twilight Zone and which was included in Twilight Zone: The Movie (1983). He also wrote four episodes for the Star Trek series: "Mirror, Mirror", "Day of the Dove", "Requiem for Methuselah", and "By Any Other Name". With Otto Klement, he co-wrote the story upon which the science fiction movie Fantastic Voyage (1966), television series, and novel by Isaac Asimov were based. Bixby's final produced or published work so far was the screenplay for the 2007 science fiction film The Man from Earth.



Budrys was born in Königsberg in the then East Prussia. His father Jonas Budrys was the consul general of Lithuania; as a child he saw Adolf Hitler in a parade in the city. In 1936, when Budrys was five years old, Jonas was appointed as the consul general in New York, instead of Paris as he had hoped. [1] [2] After the Soviet Union's occupation of Lithuania the Budrys family ran a chicken farm in New Jersey [2] while Jonas remained part of the exile Lithuanian Diplomatic Service, since the United States continued to recognize the pre-World War II Lithuanian government-in-exile and subsidized the service. During most of his adult life, Budrys held a captain's commission in the Free Lithuanian Army.

Königsberg capital city in Prussia

Königsberg is the name for a former German city that is now Kaliningrad, Russia. Originally a Sambian or Old Prussian city, it later belonged to the State of the Teutonic Order, the Duchy of Prussia, the Kingdom of Prussia, the German Empire, the Weimar Republic and Nazi Germany until 1945. After being largely destroyed in World War II by Allied bombing and Soviet forces and annexed by the Soviet Union thereafter, the city was renamed Kaliningrad. Few traces of the former Königsberg remain today.

East Prussia province of Prussia

East Prussia was a province of the Kingdom of Prussia from 1773 to 1829 and again from 1878 ; following World War I it formed part of the Weimar Republic's Free State of Prussia, until 1945. Its capital city was Königsberg. East Prussia was the main part of the region of Prussia along the southeastern Baltic Coast.

Adolf Hitler Leader of Germany from 1934 to 1945

Adolf Hitler was a German politician and leader of the Nazi Party. He rose to power as Chancellor of Germany in 1933 and later Führer in 1934. During his dictatorship from 1933 to 1945, he initiated World War II in Europe by invading Poland in September 1939. He was closely involved in military operations throughout the war and was central to the perpetration of the Holocaust.

Incorporating his family's experience, Budrys's fiction depicts isolated and damaged people and themes of identity, survival, and legacy. He taught himself English at the age of six by reading Robinson Crusoe . From Flash Gordon comic strips, Budrys read H. G. Wells's The Time Machine ; Astounding Science Fiction caused him at the age of 11 to want to become a science fiction writer. [2] Budrys was educated at the University of Miami, and later at Columbia University in New York. His first published science fiction story was "The High Purpose", which appeared in Astounding in 1952. Beginning in 1952 Budrys worked as editor and manager for such science fiction publishers as Gnome Press and Galaxy Science Fiction. Some of Budrys's science fiction in the 1950s was published under the pen name "John A. Sentry", a reconfigured Anglification of his Lithuanian name. Among his other pseudonyms in the SF magazines of the 1950s and elsewhere, several revived as bylines for vignettes in his magazine Tomorrow Speculative Fiction , is "William Scarff". Budrys also wrote several stories under the names "Ivan Janvier" or "Paul Janvier", and used "Alger Rome" in his collaborations with Jerome Bixby.

<i>Robinson Crusoe</i> 1719 novel by Daniel Defoe

Robinson Crusoe is a novel by Daniel Defoe, first published on 25 April 1719. The first edition credited the work's protagonist Robinson Crusoe as its author, leading many readers to believe he was a real person and the book a travelogue of true incidents.

Flash Gordon hero of a science fiction adventure comic strip

Flash Gordon is the hero of a space opera adventure comic strip created by and originally drawn by Alex Raymond. First published January 7, 1934, the strip was inspired by, and created to compete with the already established Buck Rogers adventure strip.

H. G. Wells Science fiction writer from England

Herbert George Wells was an English writer. He was prolific in many genres, writing dozens of novels, short stories, and works of social commentary, satire, biography, and autobiography, and even including two books on recreational war games. He is now best remembered for his science fiction novels and is often called a "father of science fiction", along with Jules Verne and Hugo Gernsback.

Budrys's 1960 novella Rogue Moon was nominated for a Hugo Award, and was later anthologized in The Science Fiction Hall of Fame, Volume Two (1973). His Cold War science fiction novel Who? was adapted for the screen in 1973. In addition to numerous Hugo Award and Nebula Award nominations, Budrys won the Science Fiction Research Association's 2007 Pilgrim Award for lifetime contributions to speculative fiction scholarship. In 2009, he was the recipient of one of the first three Solstice Awards presented by the SFWA in recognition of his contributions to the field of science fiction. [3]

Hugo Award Literary awards for science fiction or fantasy

The Hugo Awards are a set of literary awards given annually for the best science fiction or fantasy works and achievements of the previous year. The awards are named after Hugo Gernsback, the founder of the pioneering science fiction magazine Amazing Stories, and were officially named the Science Fiction Achievement Awards until 1992. Organized and overseen by the World Science Fiction Society, the awards are given each year at the annual World Science Fiction Convention as the central focus of the event. They were first given in 1953, at the 11th World Science Fiction Convention, and have been awarded every year since 1955. Over the years that the award has been given, the categories presented have changed; currently Hugo Awards are given in more than a dozen categories, and include both written and dramatic works of various types.

The Science Fiction Hall of Fame, Volume Two is an English language science fiction two-volume anthology edited by Ben Bova and published in the U.S. by Doubleday in 1973, distinguished as volumes "Two A" and "Two B". In the U.K. they were published by Gollancz as Volume Two (1973) and Volume Three (1974). The original U.S. subtitle was The Greatest Science Fiction Novellas of All Time.

Cold War State of geopolitical tension after World War II between powers in the Eastern Bloc and the Western Bloc

The Cold War was a period of geopolitical tension between the Soviet Union with its satellite states, and the United States with its allies after World War II. A common historiography of the conflict begins between 1946, the year U.S. diplomat George F. Kennan's "Long Telegram" from Moscow cemented a U.S. foreign policy of containment of Soviet expansionism threatening strategically vital regions, and the Truman Doctrine of 1947, and ending between the Revolutions of 1989, which ended communism in Eastern Europe, and the 1991 collapse of the USSR, when nations of the Soviet Union abolished communism and restored their independence. The term "cold" is used because there was no large-scale fighting directly between the two sides, but they each supported major regional conflicts known as proxy wars. The conflict split the temporary wartime alliance against Nazi Germany and its allies, leaving the USSR and the US as two superpowers with profound economic and political differences.

Having published about 100 stories and a half-dozen novels, with a wife and children to support, after 1960 Budrys wrote less fiction and worked in publishing, editing, and advertising. He became better known as among science fiction's best critics than as writer, [2] reviewing for Galaxy Science Fiction [4] and The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction , a book editor for Playboy , a longtime teacher at the Clarion Writers Workshop and an organizer and judge for the Writers of the Future awards. In addition, he worked as a publicist; in a famous publicity stunt, he erected a giant pickle on the proposed site of the Chicago Picasso during the time the newly arriving sculpture was embroiled in controversy. [5]

<i>Galaxy Science Fiction</i> American magazine

Galaxy Science Fiction was an American digest-size science fiction magazine, published from 1950 to 1980. It was founded by a French-Italian company, World Editions, which was looking to break into the American market. World Editions hired as editor H. L. Gold, who rapidly made Galaxy the leading science fiction (sf) magazine of its time, focusing on stories about social issues rather than technology.

<i>Playboy</i> Mens lifestyle and entertainment magazine based in Chicago

Playboy is an American men's lifestyle and entertainment magazine. It was founded in Chicago in 1953, by Hugh Hefner and his associates, and funded in part by a $1,000 loan from Hefner's mother. Notable for its centerfolds of nude and semi-nude models (Playmates), Playboy played an important role in the sexual revolution and remains one of the world's best-known brands, having grown into Playboy Enterprises, Inc. (PEI), with a presence in nearly every medium. In addition to the flagship magazine in the United States, special nation-specific versions of Playboy are published worldwide.

Writers of the Future (WOTF) is a science fiction and fantasy story contest that was established by L. Ron Hubbard in the early 1980s. A sister contest, Illustrators of the Future, presents awards for science fiction art. Hubbard characterized the contest as a way of "giving back" to the field that had defined his professional writing life. The contest has no entry fee and is the highest-paying contest for amateur science-fiction and fantasy writers. Notable past winners of WOTF include Stephen Baxter, Karen Joy Fowler, James Alan Gardner, Nina Kiriki Hoffman, Jay Lake, Michael H. Payne, Patrick Rothfuss, Robert Reed, Dean Wesley Smith, Sean Williams, Dave Wolverton, Nancy Farmer, and David Zindell. The winning stories are published in the yearly anthology L. Ron Hubbard Presents Writers of Future. The contest enjoys a favorable reputation in the science fiction community, although its connection with the Church of Scientology has caused some controversy.

Budrys was married to Edna Duna; they had four sons. He last resided in Evanston, Illinois. He died at home, from metastatic malignant melanoma on June 9, 2008. [6]

Evanston, Illinois City in Illinois, United States

Evanston is a city in Cook County, Illinois, United States, 12 miles (19 km) north of downtown Chicago, bordered by Chicago to the south, Skokie to the west, and Wilmette to the north. It had a population of 74,486 as of 2010. It is one of the North Shore communities that adjoin Lake Michigan and is the home of Northwestern University. The boundaries of the city of Evanston are coterminous with those of the former Evanston Township, which was dissolved in 2014 by voters with its functions being absorbed by the city of Evanston.



Collections (fiction, essays, and mixed)

Short stories

Audio recording




Related Research Articles

Damon Knight American science fiction writer, editor and critic

Damon Francis Knight was an American science fiction author, editor and critic. He is the author of "To Serve Man", a 1950 short story adapted for The Twilight Zone. He was married to fellow writer Kate Wilhelm.

Lester del Rey Novelist, short story writer, editor

Lester del Rey was an American science fiction author and editor. He was the author of many books in the juvenile Winston Science Fiction series, and the editor at Del Rey Books, the fantasy and science fiction imprint of Ballantine Books, along with his fourth wife Judy-Lynn del Rey.

Robert Silverberg American speculative fiction writer and editor

Robert Silverberg is an American author and editor, best known for writing science fiction. He is a multiple winner of both Hugo and Nebula Awards, a member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame, and a Grand Master of SF. He has attended every Hugo Awards ceremony since the inaugural event in 1953.

The first Golden Age of Science Fiction, often recognized in the United States as the period from 1938 to 1946, was an era during which the science fiction genre gained wide public attention and many classic science fiction stories were published. In the history of science fiction, the Golden Age follows the "pulp era" of the 1920s and 1930s, and precedes New Wave science fiction of the 1960s and 1970s. The 1950s are a transitional period in this scheme; however, Robert Silverberg, who came of age in the 1950s, saw that decade as the true Golden Age.

Karen Joy Fowler American novelist, short story writer, editor

Karen Joy Fowler is an American author of science fiction, fantasy, and literary fiction. Her work often centers on the nineteenth century, the lives of women, and alienation.

Thomas L. Sherred was an American science fiction writer.

<i>Star Science Fiction Stories No.2</i> book by Frederik Pohl

Star Science Fiction Stories No.2 is the second book in the anthology series, Star Science Fiction Stories, edited by Frederik Pohl. It was first published in 1953 by Ballantine Books.

Dan'l Danehy-Oakes is an American writer of science fiction and fantasy, born in New York City in 1958. In high school in Los Altos, California, Danehy-Oakes was a major contributor to a student-published science fiction magazine. His published work includes "Outside the Walls" ; "Shaara and the Sarlacc, the Skiff Guard's Tale" ; "The Wallet and Maudie," co-written with Alan Wexelblat ; and "The Deconstructed Barbarian," which was the first piece of original fiction to be published in the New York Review of Science Fiction.

<i>Great Science Fiction Stories About Mars</i> book by T. E. Dikty

Great Science Fiction Stories About Mars is a 1966 anthology of science fiction short stories edited by T. E. Dikty and published by Fredrick Fell. Most of the stories had originally appeared in the magazines Startling Stories, Argosy, Thrilling Wonder Stories, Amazing Stories, Super Science Stories and Astounding SF.

Simon McCaffery is an American author of speculative fiction. Trained as a journalist and magazine editor, he was an Honorable Mention recipient in the L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future contest twice before he began publishing short fiction in a variety of professional science fiction, horror and mystery publications in the 1990s, including Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine, Tomorrow SF, and Space and Time. He was a contributor in the anthology, Other Worlds Than These, edited by John Joseph Adams, alongside authors Stephen King and Ian McDonald. His fiction has also been collected in anthologies including the "Book of the Dead" series edited by Splatterpunk authors John Mason Skipp and Craig Spector, 100 Wicked Little Witch Stories, ''Mondo Zombie", and The Haunted Hour.

Isaac Asimov Presents The Great SF Stories 17 (1955) is the seventeenth volume of Isaac Asimov Presents The Great SF Stories, which is a series of short story collections, edited by Isaac Asimov and Martin H. Greenberg, which attempts to list the great science fiction stories from the Golden Age of Science Fiction. They date the Golden Age as beginning in 1939 and lasting until 1963.

Isaac Asimov Presents The Great SF Stories 23 (1961) is an American collection of science fiction short stories, the twenty-third volume of Isaac Asimov Presents The Great SF Stories, a series of short story collections, edited by Isaac Asimov and Martin H. Greenberg, which attempts to list the great science fiction stories from the Golden Age of Science Fiction. They date the Golden Age as beginning in 1939 and lasting until 1963. This volume was originally published by DAW books in July 1991.

<i>Worlds Best Science Fiction: 1966</i> book by Donald A. Wollheim

World's Best Science Fiction: 1966 is an anthology of science fiction short stories edited by Donald A. Wollheim and Terry Carr, the second volume in a series of seven. It was first published in paperback by Ace Books in 1966. It was reprinted by the same publisher in 1970 under the alternate title World's Best Science Fiction: Second Series. An Italian edition appeared in December 1966 under the title Il vento del sole.

<i>Assignment in Tomorrow</i> book by Frederik Pohl

Assignment in Tomorrow is an anthology of science fiction stories edited by American writer Frederik Pohl. Originally published in hardcover by Hanover House in 1954 with jacket art by Richard Powers, it was reprinted in paperback by Lancer Books in 1972.

<i>Seekers of Tomorrow</i> book by Sam Moskowitz

Seekers of Tomorrow: Masters of Modern Science Fiction is a work of collective biography on the formative authors of the science fiction genre by Sam Moskowitz, first published in hardcover by the World Publishing Company in 1965. The first paperback edition was issued by Ballantine Books in October, 1967. A photographic reprint of the original edition was issued in both hardcover and trade paperback by Hyperion Press in 1974. Most of its chapters are revised versions of articles that initially appeared in the magazine Amazing Stories from 1961-1964.

<i>Neutron Star</i> (short story collection)

Neutron Star is a collection of science fiction short stories by American writer Larry Niven, published in April 1968. The individual stories were published in If and Galaxy Science Fiction in 1966–1967, under Frederik Pohl as editor.

<i>Alpha 2</i> (Robert Silverberg anthology) 1971 anthology edited by Robert Silverberg

Alpha 2 is a science fiction anthology edited by Robert Silverberg, first published as a paperback original by Ballantine Books in November 1977. No further editions have been issued. .

"Nobody Bothers Gus" is a 1955 science fiction short story by Algis Budrys. It was first published in Astounding Science-Fiction.


  1. Clute, John. "Obituaries Algis Budrys: Science-fiction writer and editor". The Independent. Independent Co. UK. Retrieved 13 April 2015.
  2. 1 2 3 4 Pontin, Mark Williams (November–December 2008). "The Alien Novelist". MIT Technology Review.
  3. Nebula Awards Ceremony 2009. Los Angeles, CA: SFWA. 2009. p. 13.
  4. Pohl, Frederik. (2010-05-12). "Robert A. Heinlein, Algis Budrys and me". The Way the Future Blogs. Archived from the original on August 15, 2010. Retrieved 2010-08-01.
  5. Zeldes, Leah A. (2010-07-26). "The Picasso put Chicago in a pickle". Dining Chicago. Chicago's Restaurant & Entertainment Guide, Inc. Retrieved 2010-08-01.
  6. Jensen, Trevor (June 11, 2008). "Tapped human side of science fiction". Chicago Tribune. Archived from the original on June 12, 2008. Retrieved 2008-06-11.
  7. "Stories, Listed by Author". Locus. Archived from the original on February 25, 2010. Retrieved February 24, 2010.

6. Williams, Mark. "The Alien Novelist." Technology Review 111, 6. (Nov/Dec 2008). pp. 80–84