Author Jack Williamson dead at 98

Nov. 14, 2006 at 4:07 PM

PORTALES, N.M., Nov. 14 (UPI) -- Pioneer science fiction author Jack Williamson has died at the age of 98 at his home in Portales, N.M., of natural causes.

"Jack Williamson was one of the great science-fiction writers," writer Ray Bradbury told The Los Angeles Times Monday. "He did a series of novels which affected me as a young writer with dreams. I met him at 19, and he became my best friend and teacher."

Bradbury talked about showing Williamson some "awful stories" he had written "and he was very kind and didn't mention how terrible they were. He shaped my life; he was very quiet and unassuming and respected my dream and let me be awful for a long time until I got to be good."

The author of "2001: A Space Odyssey," Arthur C. Clarke, said, "I have no hesitation in placing Jack Williamson on a plane with two other American giants, Isaac Asimov and Robert Heinlein."

Williamson believed that "science is the door to the future and science fiction is the golden key," he wrote over 50 sci-fi novels, including "The Humanoids," "Darker Than You Think" and "Legion of Time."

Williamson is survived by his brother Jim and stepdaughter Adele Lovorn.

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