Tribute to Ray Bradbury
By Jennifer Kiley
Fahrenheit 451 Author Ray Bradbury Dies at 91
(BBC News-first part only & edited)
6 June 2012
Author Ray Bradbury died on Tuesday night in Southern California at the age of 91.
Ray Bradbury told Terry Wogan his writing talent came from his prolific memory and “voices inside my head.”
Bradbury wrote hundreds of novels, short stories, plays and television and film scripts in a career dating back to the 1940s. His most famous novels include Fahrenheit 451 and Something Wicked This Way Comes.
The writer’s grandson said: “He influenced so many artists, writers, teachers, scientists, and it’s always really touching and comforting to hear their stories.
“His legacy lives on in his monumental body of books, film, television and theatre, but more importantly, in the minds and hearts of anyone who read him, because to read him was to know him”.
He was one of those few people who actually exceeds your expectations”
“another amazing sci-fi visionary gone”.
Bradbury was born in Illinois, and as a teenager moved with his family to Los Angeles.
For three years after leaving school he earned a living selling newspapers, writing in his spare time.
From the early 1940s, his short stories started to appear in magazines like Weird Tales, Astounding Science Fiction and Captain Future.
In 1947, he married and published his first book, Dark Carnival.
Three years later, Bradbury began to establish his reputation with The Martian Chronicles, a collection of stories about materialistic Earthmen colonising and ruinously exploiting Mars.
His most celebrated novel, Fahrenheit 451, published in 1953, depicts a future society in which books are banned.
The story, which gets its title from the temperature at which paper supposedly ignites, proved to be uncannily prophetic – the characters are addicted to television soap operas, while miniature headphones, known as “ear thimbles”, provide a constant stream of music and news.
Bradbury preferred his work to be called “fantasy” rather than “science fiction”
A film version, directed by Francois Truffaut, was released in 1966.
For years, Bradbury tried to prevent the publication of Fahrenheit 451 as an e-book. He told the New York times that electronic books “smell like burned fuel” and called the internet “a big distraction”.
“It’s meaningless; it’s not real. It’s in the air somewhere,” he said.
But he relented in 2011, when his publishing deal was renewed. His agent said: “We explained the situation to him, that a new contract wouldn’t be possible without e-book rights. He understood and gave us the right to go ahead.” Fahrenheit 451 e-book published November 2011
Bradbury also wrote several works for film and television. He wrote the screenplay for John Huston’s film Moby Dick and scripts for many TV series, including Suspense, The Alfred Hitchcock Show and The Twilight Zone.
Bradbury was passionate about literature. In 2008, he told The National Endowment for the Arts: “If you know how to read, you have a complete education about life, then you know how to vote within a democracy.
“But if you don’t know how to read, you don’t know how to decide. That’s the great thing about our country – we’re a democracy of readers, and we should keep it that way.”
Fahrenheit 451 was one of my favortie books and films when I was a teenager. It is such a disturbing story. The thought of one book being banned is enough to get a petition going but when more and more books start appearing on banned book lists then it’s time for a movement to be created. The ending to the book and the film starring Julie Christie and Oscar Werner (he played one of the fireman.) A fireman in this book does not put out fires but he is part of a group of firemen whose responsibility is to follow leads to where books might be hidden and to seek them out. Once found, the books are piled up and burned. The entire book and film has twists and turns. Surprises, that you do not expect and the ending is amazing, It makes reading the book and viewig the film come to a most inventive conclusion. by Jennifer Kiley
Memorable Ray Bradbury Quotes:
“Insanity is relative. It depends on who has who locked in what cage.”
“People ask me to predict the future, when all I want to do is prevent it. Better yet, build it. Predicting the future is much too easy, anyway. You look at the people around you, the street you stand on, the visible air you breathe, and predict more of the same. To hell with more. I want better.” ~Beyond 1984~
“Stuff your eyes with wonder. Live as if you’d drop dead in ten seconds. See the world. It’s more fantastic than any dream made up or paid for in factories.” ~Fahrenheit 451~
“Don’t think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity. It’s self-conscious, and anything self-conscious is lousy. You can’t try to do things. You simply must do things.”
“I wonder how many men, hiding their youngness, rise as I do, Saturday mornings, filled with the hope that Bugs Bunny, Yosemite Sam and Daffy Duck will be there waiting as our one true always and forever salvation?” ~Why Cartoons Are Forever~ (1989)
“If you hide your ignorance, no one will hit you and you’ll never learn.” ~Faber in Fahrenheit 451~
“Without libraries what have we? We have no past and no future.” ~Ray Bradbury~
“There is no future for e-books, because they are not books. E-books smell like burned fuel.” ~Bradbury~ at BookExpo America, Los Angeles (May 2008)
“My job is to help you fall in love.” ~Bradbury~ in Speech at Brown University (1995)
“Science-fiction is the law-abiding citizen of imaginative literature, obeying the rules, be they physical, social, or psychological, keeping regular hours, eating punctual meals; predictable, certain, sure.” ~Bradbury~ Introduction to The Circus of Dr. Lao
“We are anthill men upon an anthill world.” ~Bradbury~
“You must live life at the top of your voice! At the top of your lungs shout and listen to the echoes.” ~Bradbury~
“Do you know why teachers use me? Because I speak in tongues. I write metaphors. Every one of my stories is a metaphor you can remember.” ~Bradbury~
“I’m not afraid of machines. I don’t think the robots are taking over. I think the men who play with toys have taken over. And if we don’t take the toys out of their hands, we’re fools.” ~Bradbury~
“I sometimes get up at night when I can’t sleep and walk down into my library and open one of my books and read a paragraph and say, ‘My God, did I write that?’” ~Bradbury~
“Do what you love and love what you do.” ~Bradbury~
“I don’t need an alarm clock. My ideas wake me.” ~Bradbury~
“I’ve often been accused of being too emotional and sentimental, but I believe in honest sentiment, and the need to purge ourselves at certain times, which is ancient. Men would live at least five or six more years and not have ulcers if they could cry better.”
“I don’t believe in being serious about anything. I think life is too serious to be taken seriously.” ~Bradbury~
“Don’t talk about it; write.” ~Bradbury~
“Go to the edge of the cliff and jump off. Build your wings on the way down.” ~Bradbury~
“The women in my life have all been librarians, English teachers, or booksellers. If they couldn’t speak pidgin Tolstoy, articulate Henry James, or give me directions to Usher and Ox, it was no go. I have always longed for education, and pillow talk’s the best.” ~Bradbury~
“We must move into the universe. Mankind must save itself. We must escape the danger of war and politics. We must become astronauts and go out into the universe and discover the God in ourselves.” ~Bradbury~
Fahrennheit 451 Trailer (2010)
Go to this link for a great sampling of the film – unable to post
NEA Big Read – Ray Bradbury: absolutely wonderful & delightful
Ray Bradbury “Fahrenheit 451″ Authorized Graphic Novel Adaptation Review
Give it to the 2 minute mark when Review for Fahrenheit 451 really kicks in
Ray Bradbury’s “Fahrenheit 451″ Book Review
It’s interesting to hear a High School Student’s perspective on a Classic Novel
Ray Bradbury – Icarus Montgolfier Wright – Format Films 1962
Discussion with Ray Bradbury
A Conversation with Ray Bradbury
An Evening With Ray Bradbury