Arthur Conan Doyle
(May 22, 1859 – July 7, 1930)
Sir Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle, a late 19th- and early 20th-century English writer principally famous for his stories of the eccentric detective Sherlock Holmes, also wrote science fiction, notably the Professor Challenger stories, and fantasy and weird fiction.
Other genre works by Doyle included The Doings of Raffles Haw (which might be considered ur-steampunk), as well as such stories as "The Horror of the Heights," "The Leather Funnel," "The New Catacomb," "The Case of Lady Sannox," "The Terror of Blue John Gap" and "The Brazilian Cat." These and other tales of science fiction/fantasy/horror were collected in Tales of Terror and Mystery, published by Doubleday in 1977. The Best Science Fiction of Arthur Conan Doyle, edited by Charles G. Waugh and Martin H. Greenberg, was published in 1981 by Southern Illinois University Press. Fourteen of Doyle's SF stories are included in this collection.
George Edward Challenger is a fictional character in a series of SF stories by Doyle. Professor Challenger is a dominating figure. He was based on a real person, a professor of physiology named William Rutherford, who had lectured at The University of Edinburgh while Doyle studied medicine there.
Doyle's Professor Challenger stories are The Lost World (1912), The Poison Belt (1913), The Land of Mist (1926), The Disintegration Machine (1928), and When the World Screamed (1929).
Doyle’s London-based consulting detective Sherlock Holmes might have been a fan if fandom had existed then. While Doyle’s stories about him and his sidekick Dr. John H. Watson aren’t stfnal, they are favorites of many fen and a strong influence on the steampunk genre.
Holmes has featured in the sf of other writers, such as appears in these anthologies:
- The Science-Fictional Sherlock Holmes (1960), edited by Robert C. Peterson and featuring works by Poul Anderson, Tony Boucher, August Derleth, Gordon R. Dickson, H. Beam Piper and Mack Reynolds;
- Sherlock Holmes Through Time and Space (1984), edited by Isaac Asimov, Martin Harry Greenberg and Charles G. Waugh, with stories by Asimov, Poul Anderson, Gordon R. Dickson, Philip José Farmer, Mack Reynolds, Fred Saberhagen, Gene Wolfe and others;
- Sherlock Holmes in Orbit (1995), edited by Mike Resnick and including Holmes stories by Resnick, George Alec Effinger, David Gerrold, Barry Malzberg, Vonda N. McIntyre, Frank M. Robinson, Leah A. Zeldes and others.
- Sherlock Holmes Entry in The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction.
- “5 Speculative Fiction Takes on Sherlock Holmes,” Book Riot, May 22, 2018.
- “10 Times Science Fiction & Fantasy Reinvented Sherlock Holmes,” Barnes & Noble Sci-Fi & Fantasy Blog, July 26, 2019.
- “22 Cases of Sherlock Holmes in Science Fiction,” I09, March 22, 2009.
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